Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Transformed from working to smoking...

I've found recently that I have been taking more notes than usual at the moment during meetings.  And the amount of meetings I have in the short term is about to sky rocket.

So, time to get the tablet out and charge it - otherwise I'll be spending more time retyping notes than I will actually acting on them!

I've not used it in a while, so the first thing I did was charge it overnight.  Then this morning before work I tried to turn it on.  Nothing.

Well, not nothing exactly.  The backlight came on, but no loading screen.  No error text.  Nothing.

OK, turn it off and try again.

Er, no.  It won't turn off, either.

Soft reset!  Nope, it goes buzz, turns off and then turns on again

Hard reset!  Damn, how do you do that again?

So I left it in that state and went to work.

When I came home it was still the same.  Yup, it hadn't gone into sleep mode in 10 hours!

So, Google how to do a hard reset.  There are two methods.

The first is simple, power an volume down button for 10 seconds.

Click from the speaker
Screen off
Screen on


Lather, rinse and repeat as needed

OK.  Nothing is working.  Method two!

There is a pinhole between the HDMI and SD slot on the side of the tablet.  Put a paper clip in the hole and...

It goes off, immediately!

Let go...

*&^% it comes back on again.

Lather, rinse and repeat as needed

Still nothing doing.

(Did I mention that I hate IT sometimes)

So a post in a transformer (no, not the Mattel one!  I hope!) forum to ask if there is any other method that I may have missed, a mail to Asus (I expect them to say send it back, it's not yet 2 years old) and it's a waiting game.


If I put my nose to the speaker grill I can smell roasting electronics (Yes, it's dead...) And it has a rather large Lithium Ion battery in it.  And it sells of burning.  And I can't turn it off...

I think I need to keep a good eye on it until the battery runs out...


  1. I am guessing you can't just add water ?

    1. I think that may be bad for the guarantee :)

      On the bright side, I think the risk of fire has been averted. If you stop poking it and wait 5 or 10 minutes then it does turn on and off. Still no screen, it's just the backlight that turns on and off, but this is at least a known problem.

      Still has to go back to Asus, and it sucks that I have to be without it, but at least I no longer worry it's going to burn the house down :)


  2. Ahhh I can see that they may not to be too keen to repair a soggy tablet ....

    I thought you might be an Apple lady ....

    1. Wash your mouth out!

      (Though I do have the dead iPhone 3G, and the dust gathering MacBook Pro in the study...)

      The Apple is just way to locked down to be useful to me. I use the Asus as a note taking machine in meetings, and as an RDP machine for managing servers without having to carry an expensive laptop with me.

      With a 14 hour battery life, full HD screen and detachable keyboard it's a wonderful hybrid.

      I hope Asus at least do the guarantee work quickly enough...

  3. Lol ...sorry just couldn't resist that ....

    You know most people would have ebayed that MacDuster - clearly geekery is more profitable in the Netherlands:-) I know what you mean about lock downs though .... I have been eyeing up the nexus 10. Just need some 3G/4G added.

    Thanks for the thoughts on the server .... Going to get some use of all that Cat6 snaking around the house!

    1. Honestly, it's one of those things that I need to get around too! Managing my life outside of work is kind of like a building having an incomplete house. I can manage the projects I need at work, but managing the things I need to do at home just doesn't happen.

      I just collapse on the sofa in the evenings and try to keep things ticking over in the weekend. It means that the non-essential things don't happen as well as I they should :)


      PS No problem - that was one of the projects. It was about 10 months from 'I need to do that' until I actually bought the parts for the server and built it. There are still bits that I want to do for it (adding a virtual machine for a DLNA server for music and videos etc). Who knows when it's going to be finished :)

  4. Hi Stace!

    Sorry to hear about your tablet woes. Hope it works out for the best. At least it didn't go down just before a deadline!

    This seems to be contagious, if it makes you feel better. The writers who worked on my project (and have since left the company) were, well, technically-challenged. We'll leave it at that. :c)

    I got a request to re-compile a Help project I own for an emergency patch for our biggest client. I knew this project was troubled, but in the past I'd been able to figure out a workaround.

    Not this time. Of course not, since everyone was waiting for it. Sigh.

    When I investigated this project with my friend and fellow writer B, we were astonished at all of the problems we found. As B noted, it was only a matter of time until it blew up, and a miracle it lasted as long as it did.

    We managed to do a one-time build held together with chewing gum and duct tape. We called our manager to explain how we did it, and she started singing "La-la-la-la..." Plausible deniability, you see. :c) Anyway, I can see myself rebuilding this entire project in my future. Double sigh.

    Anyway, hope we both have better luck next time!

    == Cass

    P.S. I must confess something, btw. My name is Cass... and I'm a Mac gal. Sorry, Stace! I hope my budding Muse fixation can overcome this mortal sin! lol

    1. Hopefully it'll be sorted when I send it back (just need to find the receipt for it!)

      I have had jobs where I needed to do those type of crisis control. It wasn't pat of the job description, just something that I actually enjoy doing (I find my neurons fire so much better in those situations than other ones!). Of course it can come back to bite you. I lost a job once by fixing something that the director and architect said was impossible to fix and we should just accept. Oops, apparently! Personally I think that something is impossible and someone manages to fix it then I think it's a good thing, not something to hate the person for :)


      PS I'll forgive you on the Mac :) You have to use what works for you - it's just that they don't work for me! I tinker too much - both on an OS level and on a hardware level. And that is just something that doesn't work with a Mac I found...

    2. You *lost* a job for fixing something?!? You are better off not working at a company like that, Stace!

      I, too, like being in those situations. At my first job in high tech they called me "Mr. Readme" because they would dump a huge stack of bugs on my desk and say "Is it possible to create a readme from this? Say, by end of today?" And for some weird reason... I would get calmer! I guess my attitude was either I can't do it, which is what they expect, or I can, and they'll be happy. It seemed to work then... at my current job, not so much. Sigh. Oh well.. every day is a day closer to escaping to my next, and hopefully better, job, right?

      == Cass

      Thank you for your understanding, btw. I think Macs appeal to my inner free spirit. Wherever she is. lol

    3. The problem with that company stemmed from the fact all the senior people had been there for years and enjoyed being 'god' to the rest of the developers. I've never respected people because they demanded it, only when someone earns it. And expect no less in return in my role as team lead now. I have to lead by example - when I do something wrong I'll hold my hands up and let people know something went wrong and work with people on fixing it.

      I've been told I'm insane as I could hide my mistakes quite easily and no one would know. But if I did that it would undermine my position more than letting people know that I am human, and I do make mistakes.

      In that company it was exactly the opposite. The directors were infallible, and so when I found hundreds of serious bugs in the architects code it was not taken as a "Oh, wow - we'd better get on with fixing those!", it was taken as a direct attack in the architect himself - and from that point my career there was doomed - even though my team lead gave me glowing reviews and always commented that when she went on vacation I was the only person she didn't give a detailed work list to because she knew she could count on me to be productive on the right things whilst she was away.

      I think the worst was the way they ended my contract. In Holland you can have three temporary contracts before they must either let you go, or take you on permanently. I only found out that I was not going to be kept when I pushed for information and my team lead defied the directors in telling me with enough time to find a new job. The directors were going to tell me at 17:00 on the last day (something they did more often - they were really evil people on a major power trip).

      To be fair I knew that one of the directors was a git when I interviewed for the job. It was the only interview where I left, after being told I got the job, and thought 'Damn'. If it wasn't for my current company going bankrupt, and it being a bad time to be a non Dutch developer in Holland I would never have taken the job! But the rent needed paying :) I've never had a job as bad, and I hope I never do!


  5. Give it a week and Microsoft will be giving the Surface tabs away with a packet of cornflakes. It's the only way they're going to shift them :-)

    Bad news on the tech front though :-(

    1. I got confirmation that it has to go back to Asus... Another thing to organise!

      As for the Surface, I would love to get a Surface Pro (but I think that we have enough tech toys in the house for now ;p)