December 22nd, 2010


Unusual failure mode

The problem with this cold weather is it has led my mouse to become horribly twitchy - sometimes not responding to movements, sometimes moving perfectly normally.

Why is this the cold weather? After all, it's perfectly warm at my desk.


Because it's cold, I'm wearing a nice Aran jumper, as well as my usual polo shirt.

The jumper produces tiny amounts of lint.

One of those tiny pieces of lint worked its way into the recess through which the mouse light shines onto the underlying surface.

And those fine little fibres were causing the optical problems - because the lens could see them, and they weren't moving.

(Of course, I didn't look closely enough to see this until after I'd retrieved a new mouse from our support guy. I had to have time to consider possible failure modes in an optical mouse, and to come to the conclusion that even if the light appeared as bright as usual, something had to be affecting it.)

ETA: And now I check this one at home, it too had a little bit of clumped fibre in the same place.

Ups and downs

The last 5 months of this year have been a mixed bag.

I've now had yet another bad bit of news this evening - my ex-mother-in-law (a woman who I respected greatly - it's far from easy to cope with triplets when you are literally single handed) died on Monday.

The funeral isn't till early January.

I'm going to remember some highlights from this year - we did greatly enjoy our trip down under - but the good things were almost all pre-planned (the exception being that lunch last Friday), whereas everything seems to have broken down (we've had to replace both the toaster and the oven this month), and there's been a number of deaths.

I've got at least one more bad thing coming, though how bad it will be, I don't know yet.

Here's to a better 2011
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