Saturday, May 25, 2019

Powerless Surfectant

     I was flying a desk at work -- the kind of desk with controls and computers on it, a thing that needs a couple of minutes of full attention out of every fifteen -- and had my Surface parked off to one side, charging, with a story I'm working on up in the text editor.  If I had time to type a line or two, great, and if I didn't, it would be charged up later.

     Turned to it, rested my hands on the keyboard, the phone rang and I pushed the little computer to one side.  Picked up the phone and did the work-type work, thinking, Gee, the side of the Surface felt warm.  Hot, even.

     Finished with the task and reached over to the Surface.  The power connection, an oddball little magnetic thing that's been as trouble-free as anyone could ask, was quite warm.  And the tiny white LED in the end of it was flickering.

     Pulled it free and the face of the connector was loose.  It wasn't holding the little spring-loaded connector pins in contact with their opposite numbers on the side of the Surface.  So it was making poor contact and heating up while trying to charge the computer's battery.

     Microsoft didn't have any Surface Pro-no-number chargers on their site; as far as they're concerned, hardware that old needs to sit quietly in back, an unwanted realtive, as welcome as a week-old bowl of congealed oatmeal.  But aftermarket suppliers still offer them.  Prices were such that I bought a couple different ones, and I'll see which I prefer when they arrive in the next couple of days.

     Meanwhile, I'll transition to a backup, probably the inexpensive little Acer I named "Skinny Brainbox."*    It's on its second battery and I just had it out to update Windows and the web browser.  Fortuitous, hey?
* It's traditional.  In homage to a particularly disturbing H. P. Lovecraft story, my desktops have been named "Brainbox n" for years; the Surface Pro is "Brainbox Junior," the Surface RT is "Baby Brainbox," and so on

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