Friday, August 15, 2008

Must have been designed by a man

On Thursday it was time for the second most dreaded check up by women, the mammogram. Its recommended that all women over 45 have a bi-annual mammogram which the government pays for and I'll be eligible for those come November, but as I've had a lump removed (benign), Its recommended that I have one annually.
As I have medical insurance I get to to the pleasant surrounding of St Marks breast clinic rather than the back of a mobile clinic (i.e. modified container) but the experience of placing one's delicate bits in a vice to be xrayed is never pleasant.

The good news was that everything was OK, expect that I have lymph nodes the size of golfballs in my armpits. They look normal and this is probably the result of a virus I have, but they may want me to come back and have a needle biopsy just to be sure.

Thursday was a long day as I did a DR test for one of my clients. It was what they call a confidence test which means that we switched over to using the backup system, ran it for an hour and switched it back. As we were proving the system still worked (it hasn't been tested since the last upgrade), we did it in the wee hours when they weren't busy so I'm have plenty of time to iron out any bugs. There were a few things to look into, but over all the test was successful and I got to bed around 2am. Next Wednesday, we will do the real thing, where they actually ship the staff off during the day to spend a whole shift working at the DR call centre just to check its all going.

For those readers wondering what DR is, it stands for Disaster Recovery and it basically translates in this case where the company is question has a whole spare call centre that they can use should something happen to stop the main call centre working. Its very important to ensure that the spare call centre works and most importantly can pick up exactly where the main centre left off as they have staff out at various locations doing work and they don't want to lost track of where they are, or lose any jobs that have been called in but not done yet.

In my years I've known 7 cases where we've needed to go to DR. One was due to a murder on the doorstep of the call centre so the next shift couldn't get in, one due to air conditioning failure (you still can't run large rooms of comouters without air conditioning to keep them cool), one due to an important computer dying and the other 4 were all cases where the phone system has gone down as a result of a man with a digger.

On Thursday Vik printed and fitted a belt tensioner to the RepRap which has improved the quality further and printed a couple of spare opto flags which look really good.
The RepRap is now having another go at a new Y motor bracket. this is third. The first was trashed by the bug that resulted in the head trying to go through the build (I've added a photo of that to Wednesday's blog); the second was printing last night when the RepRap just stopped for no reason. Below is a photo of it printing with the stalled build next to it, followed by an image of the belt tensioner in place.

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