Monday, June 8, 2015

Key Problems

I don't know what it is with me and broken computer keyboards but this is the second one that has failed me and required emergency repair so I can continue to expose my emotionally traumatic past.
I really suspected it was the power wire.

I don't abuse this keyboard at all although if it had eyes I'm sure it would be in therapy. Maybe it's trying to kill itself so it doesn't have to watch me torture myself anymore. I don't know. I'm not a doctor. But it was connecting and disconnecting randomly and I dreaded a BIOS update and all the keyboards in Latin America are not the same so I would have trouble I don't want. Spanish keyboards have bizarre symbols and if I told you want I have to do to make the @ symbol on a Spanish Keyboard you would laugh in my face. It requires two people. And simply making " quotation marks involves three different key shortcuts, and then the quotation marks do not appear until you type a letter. There are upside down question marks that begin a question. Ctrl+A doesn't do shit to select all the text. No. And Ctrl+T (todos) also doesn't do shit.  a comma is where the period normally is. In short, I had to fix this fucking keyboard that I bought in a pawn store in Maine many moons ago. I manipulated the cable and it seemed that either the software was dropping the keyboard exactly when I twisted the cable or else the cable had broken inside the housing, which has never happened to my keyboard before. This was a trip down memory lane into shielded cable, ground wires, data, power, neutral, strain relief, dsub pins, engineer drawing, sweating vodka while I fucked up a semi-conductor cable harness. God, the awful things I've done to survive. Bunch of bullshit but it helped me avoid buying a new keyboard and learning the Latin American layout.

That plastic block is called a strain relief and you can see how well it worked because only one wire broke.

Well, I took the keyboard to an internet shop where I print out my Flintstones Theme Jazz charts and plugged it in and it didn't work there either. Then I tug on the wires and the red one pulls right out. So that's a clue. And it broke right next to the strain relief and for a week or two it was hanging on by a thread and if I held the keyboard perfectly it would power up, but that thread broke finally and would only reconnect when I twisted the wires. Even though it's like .7mA of current the red power wire does succumb to heat over time and also the strain of repeatedly typing "Cheerleader Porn" could have been too much to tolerate. I feel bad for the keyboard, but the world is full of grief these days and we all have to deal with bullshit.
Don't cut the shield or the ground wire that surround the main wires. Split the shield in half and then pull the metallic-wrapped 4 wires out. Take the wrapping off and check for continuity. Cutting the ground wires won't kill the power but it will allow a short to ground to kill your computer.

The lesson is that things can be fixed but at this point it doesn't matter if you buy another brand new keyboard.
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Man in the Van by Oggy Bleacher is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.