02 January 2004

In the “Nobody ever tells me anything” department...

Okay. That’d be one graduate degree, two postdocs, and two years on the job that I’ve been working with electronics. And today I discover I've been doing soldering all wrong all this time. D’oh! Three supervisors, and none ever gave me a hint about the subtleties of joining two wires together. Yeah, the stuff I did before worked somehow, but I did it the wrong way. I learned today (through the wonders of a Google search with the keywords, “how to solder”) that you’re never supposed to pick up a bit of solder on the tip and “paint” the wires, which is something I'd done many times...

C'est la guerre.

And to make matters even more annoying, I’m trying to solder wires into a 6-pin mini DIN plug, which is extremely annoying, because you can barely get that soldering iron in around the wire cups. One of the more irritating connections known to man. Must be a British engineer involved in their creation somewhere.

(Old joke: “Why was there never a mass-market British computer? Because they couldn’t figure out how to make it leak oil.” Current and former MG owners like myself find that joke hysterical.)

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