Dead Pod

Worrying times here at Chez 6000. I took Colin to the vet yesterday evening, and when I got back into the car at the surgery, we were (Colin was) so busy chatting about how good it was to be out of the vet with everything apparently still intact that I quite forgot to restart the soothing music which had accompanied our journey there. And then when we got back to the house, we were (Colin was) so excited to be back home with all four legs and a tail that I quite forgot to take my iPod out of my car.

This morning, when I came to play some music on the way to work, I no longer had an iPod.
I had a Dead Pod. RIP SnoopyToo.

My first thought was that I had left it playing through the extensive collection of tunes and that the battery had given up. I have done that before, but it usually saves just enough battery power to tell me that it has no battery power. This time it was completely dead.

My second thought was that I was going to have to listen to 5fm.

I shed a tear, which immediately froze on my cheek. I may have mentioned that the current climatic conditions in Cape Town are somewhat chilly.
“Hmm,” I thought. “I wonder if that has something to do with it?”

Once at work, I plugged the iPod in, but there was still no sign of life. And so, while I left it plugged in, I did some extensive research (I googled), and apparently, chilly iPod problems are a thing:

When I got in my car on Saturday morning there was still ice all over my car and the iPod was dead, as if the battery was zilch. I put it near a heater vent to warm up while I drove, and still nothing when hooked up to the charger adapter.

I should point out here that my iPod was in a car, in a garage, on a night that only really got down to about 4.5ºC, so we were some distance off the “ice all over my car” scenario. But the symptoms were exactly the same.

Apple says that the operating temperature range of its iPod Classic is -20°C to 45°C. At no point is Cape Town going to trouble the lower end of that scale, although summer will easily top the high end. However, last night did neither.

The good news is that my iPod now seems to be fine. It wasn’t a battery issue (it’s come back to life with a near full battery), so I’m guessing that it was temperature related, despite Apple’s claims.

There’s some good advice on that thread I linked to:

Think back to those warnings you used to see on the back of 5.25″ floppy disks. “If it’s comfortable enough for you, then it’s good enough for your disk,” or something like that. Your iPod just needs to warm up, most likely.

And no. I wouldn’t have wanted to have spent last night in my car.

Welcome back, Snoopy Too.

We Put This Thermometer In The Sun In Cape Town. You Won’t Believe What Happened Next.

It’s a hot day in Cape Town. This happens fairly regularly around this time of year, this being Cape Town and it being summer. Today was meant to get to 38 or 39ºC, depending on whom you chose to believe. But when we hung a calibrated and certified thermometer out of our lab window, we got a temperature of 41.1ºC.

This was in the shade, but it was obviously not in a Stevenson Screen – the official vented white box, 1.5m from the ground, which provides the standard conditions (in the shade, out of the wind, away from surfaces radiating heat etc) for measuring weather. But we don’t have a Stevenson Screen. We were just messing around hanging a thermometer out of a second floor window while we should have been working eating our lunch.

And then we hung it in the sun. Now, to be in the sun, it did have to be a bit closer (within 30cm, perhaps) to a wall which had also been in the sun, but still – if you were where the thermometer was at 12:46pm this afternoon, this is what you would have been experiencing:

IMG_20150303_124816

Blimey.

So no, despite my scientific leanings, this wasn’t scientific.
But our quick and dirty experiment does seem to indicate that Cape Town is bloody hot today.

Drink much, stay safe.

Temperatures scales explained

A temperature-related conversation on Twitter earlier today reminded me that I’ve been meaning to post this helpful guide to the differences between the three main temperature scales:

image

On that note, the rest of the week in Cape Town is looking dangerously hot whichever scale you choose, with Friday baking us all and Saturday melting us with some sickeningly Durbanesque humidity.

Power cut

Just a quick quota photo effort from me this evening.

We had a power cut at work this afternoon which left all of us playing catch up – due to a fault at the Koeberg Switching Station, apparently. Someone evidently switched it off.
 
Add to that the oppressive heat (43°C when I left work), the need to swim lots and a wonderful Porterhouse Steak braai, couple them up to a teething daughter and what do you get?

A quota photo of my collegue trying to look cool in the doorway of the darkened lab, that’s what.
The photo, like this post, was quick and dirty.

The power cut continued at least as long is it took the residual effect of the air-con to give up, at which point and we went home to sweat there instead.

Tomorrow we are promised a far more reasonable (chilly, even) 22°C.