July 11th, 2006


Fire Pretty...

Ooh! A Dell laptop suffers "a thermal incident." At least, that's what their what VP for corporate communications called it.


Cindy Shaw, a securities analyst with Moors & Cabot, notified her clients about the publicity. Last Thursday, citing reports of a second smoking laptop, this one in Pennsylvania, she advised them that "should this story also hit the mainstream press, we believe there is headline risk and potentially negative demand ramifications for Dell."

"Potentially negative demand ramifications for Dell." What an obtuse way of saying folks won't buy their products because they catch fire. I do like the phrase "smoking laptop," although I'm not sure if it's hers or the reporter's.

Another thing to think about from the story is that the exact same thing could happen if the laptop were, say, on an airplane tray table at 35,000 feet. Wouldn't that be fun? I wonder how long it will be before the TSA gets around to banning their use on flights.

All of which reminds me that a friend of mine was one of the first people to point out that portable computers and the like could interfere with aircraft avionics. He was even invited to be on the Today Show to talk about it. He declined.

Man, am I ever stiff this morning. This morning I got up, and tried to turn off the alarm clock when it went off, but it refused to turn off, no matter how many times I flipped the switch. This went on for a few frustrating minutes until I actually woke up. Turns out to be much easier to turn off an alarm clock if you're not just trying to do it in a dream.