Western Decrepit strikes again


Amazing. This newer Western Digital notebook HD has its paper thin logic board secured to the HDA chassis by means of rivet-like studs that are part of the chassis itself. Cheap as hell, but now a broken sata connector or logic board fault will definitely be harder to deal with. I’ve done board swaps on hard disks before to recover data… good times but I guess that ship has sailed.

Quest Diagnostics or Why this blog has a fail tag

Quest Diagnostics is the least professional corporation I have ever had the misfortune to deal with. Oh, by the way, quest.. I want you to read this post, and I will not remove it.

I had to make an appointment for a drug screening as part of an employment application. Once requested, the test needed to be completed within 24 hours. I immediately attempted to make an appointment but was told by their online scheduling system that none were available in the Miami area that day. The system gladly let me set an appointment for 2:40 pm the next day (today, as I write this) at a testing center on 41st street on Miami Beach.

I arrive at the testing center to find it closed with a note on the door indicating they shut down for training at 1 PM. The note had an 800 number, the location of another testing center at 170th street, and a pencilled note “most unprofessional lab ever”. Buuuuuuurn.

Pic attached.


I called the 800 number only to be given a line for a BROKEN IVR scheduling service. This IVR had no option to connect to an operator and simply referred me to questdiagnostics.cok. While waiting for another bus*, I checked my previous appointment in their web based scheduler. Gone without a trace. Poof.

It was, however, able to give me a new appointment for a testing center near Dadeland South station, so I requested that. The confirmation page gave me a different 800 number so I hammered its IVR until it gave me an OPERATOR QUEUE! Advertisements rattled off for test services that’d only make sense to medical specialists until I got a person on the line. I asked if it was possible to call ahead to the testing center since this was my last shot at being able to piss in their Magical Science Cup within the allotted time period and was informed that this is impossible.


They literally don’t have a phone. I even found a big clinic list that was posted on an HMO’s website and that had the 800 number for all of them.

I very politely confirmed my appointment with her, she said it’d be fine as long as I can get in by 3:30 pm. The hours listed say until 3, I don’t know who to believe. She confirmed they are one of the few centers in the Miami area that can do the drug test.

I politely asked that she register my complaints. She said the local office was supposed to post a note on their door, which they had, but that doesn’t help anyone who scheduled through the Quest web site.

In summary, Fuck you, Quest Diagnostics. Go jump off the floating piss cup you came in here on. DIAF. Fail fail fail. I really hope you do not cost me the opportunity at what will probably be the best job I’ve ever had.

Telecom secrets revealed – A Sprint PCS cell site!!

What you can't see in this photo is that it's over 100 degrees in the room, lolz
The Now -- Failing --Network

This is what a particular Sprint PCS cell site in southwestern Miami-Dade County, Florida, looks like inside.

Shield your eyes, it’s horrible. No, actually, you will want to shield your eyes because the batteries were installed so badly that I felt the need to place some cut-up pieces of a plastic container in between the battery terminals and some aluminum-cased monitoring widgets that were sitting on top of them to avoid an electrical fire. (Upon testing the batteries I found then to be at about 10.1 volts DC. FAIL.)

And this kind of thing is why I trust ham radio for communications more than anything I pay a mystery team for “service” on. 🙂

Xantrex sounds like it should be the name of a drug anyway

Xantrex Technologies, now Schneider Electric Renewable Energy, has some of the worst customer service policies and procedures in place that I’ve ever had the misfortune to experience. One new development from them is complete and immediate discontinuation of warranty support and service for any product that has been discontinued. Say you just bought a whole wall full of XW6048’s at around $3K each … Well, too bad, if they go out of production tomorrow, they’re totally orphaned and you’re stuck with them, working or not — and I have been seeing major quality fade on their products as of late!!

Their new charge controllers, the XW MPPT 80 600, just look like a hot mess. A demo unit that arrived at work came to us with internal cables unplugged; I can’t be sure if they just didn’t connect them at the factory or if they came loose in shipping. When the sun comes up over your pv array and puts up to 600 volts onto the controller, do you REALLY want to find out there are loose parts rattling around in there? Reeeeally? (DC arcs get really mad.)

OutBack Power has some new 8000 grid interactive watt inverters with split phase output out now. Let us all rid ourselves of the stupid Xantrex XW system. Pleeeeease.

Also, just fyi, 54vdc kinda stings like a mother*?+!er. It feels like a fire ant sting.

pic related.

pic related.