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Jan 26 2008

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My Geeky Good Deed

The Grey Ghost was slightly overdue for it’s 40K mile scheduled maintenance. So I took advantage of the downtime at work (yes, it’s Saturday … but I’m on a high profile, under-resourced, project with a tight deadline.   I’ll be in tomorrow) to take my car in to the Food dealership and get the work done.

All that had to be done was an oil & filter change and tire rotation… so I had an hour to kill.

Obviously I took my laptop so I could kill the time (mostly playing solitaire, but checking some email using my phone’s network access).

There was another guy with a very similar Dell Latitude laptop … I casually asked him if there was any WiFi access. He indicated that he didn’t know … but he couldn’t use it anyways, because his wireless card wasn’t working.

I indicated that I was pretty handy with computers (especially the Dell Latitudes, since it was a similar model to mine) and offered to take a look. Turns out someone had disabled the wireless card in the device manager. I enabled the device and verified it was working by plugging in my portable access point just to see if the card could find a signal. I also showed him how to use the ‘WiFi Catcher‘ switch (when you push the switch, the a light will indicate if there is a Wireless signal in the area, without even having to turn on the computer).

Sadly, there was no WiFi access in the waiting area. I’m going to send an email to the Ford dealership to suggest they provide it. Sure would make waiting for your car a lot less boring.

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