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Author Topic: Ever feel you spend more time dealing with buggy stuff than using it?  (Read 1663 times)
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Magnox
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« on: July 16, 2019, 04:09:52 16:09 »

Do you ever feel that you spend (waste!) more time dealing with bugs in other people's documents, software and silicon than actually getting useful work done?

I do, all the time.

Just in the last two days:

  • Installed Internet Download Manager from here to try it out for some files I wanted. Didn't like it, so uninstalled it properly from control panel. No browser could subsequently download anything, not even the latest Firefox to try reinstalling it. Took 30 minutes to fix the mess that IDM's uninstaller left.
  • Spent an hour figuring out why a program in CCS C wasn't compiling, only to discover a typo in CCS's own include file.
  • Never mind the terrible grammar and simply impossible to understand pages in the above's 'help' documents. Although 'The result is stored in the bugger' tickled me.
  • Using 12 bit ADC on a dsPIC with the CTMU and wondering why it wasn't giving sensible results... eventually determined that my silicon revision had a bug that prevented use of 12 bit with the CTMU even though it wasn't in the errata. Several hours wasted.
  • The CTMU still didn't work as described. After another several hours, I thought of just swapping the inputs around and swapping them in the register too. It worked. It seems that the CTMU can only handle detecting first rising edge from one pin despite supposedly having the ability to swap them. Another silicon bug not in the errata? This has really buggered up my plans in this case with no easy workaround*. No wonder the CTMU is only on a few chips; I think they gave it up as a joke. Shame, it's really (potentially) useful.
  • Outlook 2010 has just trashed my mail profile and needs clean reinstalling. Again.

/rant  Grin

*Well, I can add external logic, but I've run out of pins on the PIC to control it. So now I need logic plus a bigger PIC.
« Last Edit: July 16, 2019, 04:12:25 16:12 by Magnox » Logged
dennis78
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« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2019, 08:34:55 08:34 »

You work too much.

Please, just slow down and you will have proportionally less problems Cheesy
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Magnox
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« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2019, 09:00:36 09:00 »

I can't slow down - I have new kit to play with and more on the way and I'm all excited about it...

Runs around in circles waving hands in air while waiting for the FPGA project to finish placing

...besides, that CTMU issue came back - the CTMU is basically crap and so unstable and out of whack that it's almost useless!


ETA: oh, and this is play, not work. I'm more relaxed when someone else is paying for my time  Tongue

« Last Edit: July 18, 2019, 09:07:48 09:07 by Magnox » Logged
zac
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« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2019, 02:02:38 14:02 »

Yeah, a lot of stuff is buggy these days.   I've avoided outlook though and use thunderbird instead.  When I had a client who insisted on using an exchange server, I ran outlook in a virtual machine since it's susceptible to virii that can infect the computer without even opening an attachment.  Microsoft supposedly fixed this in 2017 though. 

I had a toshiba usb drive (the type powered by the usb port) that developed a problem while in storage such that it became very slow also bogged down pc running windows 7 that was attempting to access it.  Oddly, the computer slowed to a crawl though the CPU usage was still only 12%.  Opening a small word file could take 30 seconds and would word would sometimes just freeze.  Just for curiosity, I left the drive formatting all night and there was even an visible progress on the format window progress bar though the drive access light was blinking away. 

Nearly 20 years ago, I used a dallas semiconductor (now maxim) digital temperature sensor in a design to find after we had deployed thousands of them that it had a weird bug that caused a random bit flip in the temperature reading.  The flipped bit was one of the more significant bits so skewed the temperature reading enough to cause problems, but occurred very infrequently.   Fortunately, the oven (for PCR to amplify dna) had enough thermal mass so losing a single reading didn't destabilize the PID loop.  My temporary fix was a firmware change that disregarded temperature readings that were too large of a change from the previous few readings.  In our testing, the distorted readings never persisted for more than 2 consecutively.  We got 50K free replacement parts, but they didn't pay for the cost of servicing all the machines or for time spent diagnosing the problem.  Oddly, they didn't even ask for the defective parts that we still had in inventory to be returned.  I'm not sure whether my client actually replaced all the parts installed in machines already in the field since the problem wasn't noticeable after my firmware patch. 
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metal
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« Reply #4 on: July 18, 2019, 02:22:48 14:22 »

sounds like F-35 project...
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dennis78
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« Reply #5 on: July 19, 2019, 04:31:14 04:31 »

Haha. F-35 is good example what is long effect when big corporations play dirty games with people due to cost reduction, exporting jobs in Asia, when use incompetent managers, play budget drain games...

Posted on: July 19, 2019, 04:28:34 04:28 - Automerged

...
ETA: oh, and this is play, not work. I'm more relaxed when someone else is paying for my time  Tongue


Then play less Cheesy
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sphinx
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« Reply #6 on: July 19, 2019, 05:45:24 05:45 »

I bought a Nokia 7.1 mobile phone i think i did deleted the home page clock, when trying to get it back i can not get it to the 3x1 size as it was before i deleted
it not even a master reset fixes it. When i click the date on home page i get preferences that does not go anywhere. These are the recent ones i can remember.
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the more you learn, the lesser you get to understand. is it then good know alot but not understand what you know or.......
fpgaguy
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« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2019, 12:00:47 12:00 »

I was fairly convinced that bugs are somehow attracted to me via some EMF-like force
Now I do know that I create a lot of my own bugs, but not all by far.
It's a good first step to learning how to fix them.

I'm glad to know I'm not only one
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Magnox
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« Reply #8 on: July 19, 2019, 03:17:37 15:17 »

No, you're definitely not the only one fpgaguy.

My latest? I just went to do some more testing and noticed an odd signal on my 'scope. My bench PSU must have just popped something today, and is giving out a big, fat 60kHz switching spike at 2Vpp on all outputs!

Now I have to fix that before I can continue. One step forward, two steps back...

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bobcat1
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« Reply #9 on: July 21, 2019, 10:26:38 10:26 »

Today every company is rushing to market, and on the way providing semi-baked-products
Some company do it more often and some Less but no one is perfect.
 
I like working with Linear-Tech(Analog device) components although more expensive then other but mostly worked on first round of design.

This one of the reason why I don't work with new and hot components specially new micro-controllers :

"shaving on a new components might get you lot's of cuts.... Sad"

All the best

Bobi
 

 
« Last Edit: July 21, 2019, 10:32:27 10:32 by bobcat1 » Logged
token0
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« Reply #10 on: August 30, 2019, 01:05:29 13:05 »

Here's mine, from what I've remember:

ESI Audiotechnik Prodigy 7.1 HiFi on Envy24HT: had nice sound, but abysmally unstable ASIO drivers on win7 x64 and loud POP on powering off. And stupid braided adapter from DB15HD to 3.5 mm jacks, which had bad contact. Also in 75% of cases it could not start after PC waked from sleep(it could start after another sleep-wake cycle).

Lenovo S12 ION netbook with atom N270. Was too slow, even GT9400 didn't help, battery time under 2h 30m.

Galaxy Note N7000. Looked very good on paper. had very hot and slow 45nm CPU, huge and not energy-efficient pentile amoled (also it lacked first levels of gray, in reality displayed 0,6-255), wacom-licensed tech stylus had awful precision and false-clicks, awful GPS precision, awful battery time  under 7 hours on original ROM. Samsung never polished it.

Logitech MX3200 keyboard and MX600 mouse combo on 24 MHz and MX610 mouse on 2.4 GHz (or any peripheral with nRF2401) very bad connection.

Logitech K800 keyboard  keys falling off (awful design and quality of clear plastic fixation notches).

Logitech F710 gamepad had no power switch, drained batteries, soft-touch became sticky (EWW!). I've removed that ugly soft-touch coating with help of dimethylsulfoxide and added a power switch.



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