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Author Topic: Static Initiated Fail?  (Read 4575 times)

Jonathan Johnson

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Re: Static Initiated Fail?
« Reply #20 on: October 31, 2014, 12:27:32 am »

I'm a huge proponent of using the logic of Occam's Razor to help determine failure mechanisms. The simplest explanation is usually the correct one, and highly complex theories a generally BS. As noted earlier, there's not a high likelihood that Martian's in a spaceship actually landed in my yard and ate my homework. More likely I just lost it or didn't do it at all. Yes, at times there's the perfect storm of problems that comes together. But that's pretty rare.

This same idea of simple explanations happens in the medical health field all the time. For instance, before Pasteur discovered that bacteria caused spoilage there were dozens of theories as to why things rotted. But once you understand bacteria and the fact that you can kill them with heat, then you understand the process of canning. However, there were illnesses that didn't seem to be caused by bacteria, which had to wait until the invention of the electron microscopes to discover viruses. And so it goes with most fails. You have to force yourself to stand back from the problem and see the big picture, then find the seemingly unimportant detail that turns out to be the lynchpin of the problem. That's the really fun part.

As a general rule, I find that the problems that have the biggest impact often have the simplest solutions, and the problems that are mere annoyances are often the most difficult to solve.

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Stop confusing the issue with facts and logic!

Scott Holtzman

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Re: Static Initiated Fail?
« Reply #21 on: October 31, 2014, 01:30:36 am »

I was a contract engineer for Sprint PCS. In 99 as lead network engineer for the Motorola CDMA FoA (fist outside application).

Digital radio was new to cellular and not well understood by management.  As a CDMA expert I had wide latitude as a contractor. 

We had a pack of software guys from India analyzing stack traces and core dumps,to say this 50 million dollar switch was less than stable would be an understatement. 

However we had a test cell at the MTSO and several adjacent for basic functionality testing.  This however didn't stop corporate from parading visitors through my facility that was not inspection ready.  The engineers were not very presentable and some of the staff had deferred personal hygiene. 

So one afternoon a parade of suits were in the facility when we had the switch go offline.  Some guy in a cheap suit runs into the control room wanting to know what's wrong. I am standing by the alarm printer trying to find the root cause in the hundreds of alarms so I reply "it's broke" hoping he will apply.  He asks what O am going to do about it. I replied "fix it".  Instead of going away he asked me what kind of idiot I was and who I reported to.  When he saw my contractor badge he thought I was with the vendor.  He took my badge and had me escorted off the property.

My boss called a little while later, I thing I was already half lit up at the bar with a some key folks from the project.  After an exchange of expletives I asked if he had a better idea.  He suggested I make up a technical explanation. 

The moral is Mike is right.  This guy was a senior VP.  I could have explained real process issues, vendors forced into deadlines that doomed them to failure then blamed for the companies failure to plan.  They didn't want to hear that.

Sometimes plausible deniability requires daily bathing in ignorance.

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Scott AKA "Skyking" Holtzman
River Delta Audio is now:

Ghost Audio Visual Solutions, LLC
Cleveland OH
www.ghostav.rocks

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Re: Static Initiated Fail?
« Reply #21 on: October 31, 2014, 01:30:36 am »


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