13 March 2012

How not to replace a memory card

Long ago in the days when floppy disks actually were floppy, and a black and white golf game was considered the height of PC cool, I was interested in technology and would rush to keep up to date with the latest gadgets and developments.

In time however, the interest waned as technology changed faster than Julia Gillard changes her mind. Eventually all I wanted was a phone that acted like a - phone. As in, make and receive phone calls.

A year or so ago I replaced my outdated and more than slightly broken phone with a relatively simple, basic model. Even that had a camera, a very good music player, easy access to email and the internet, and even YouTube and social media. All for under $50.

The other day I wanted to transfer some music from my PC to my phone, using the phone's micro SD card and a card reader. All went well until I tried to put the card back in the phone. That's when the problems began.

I dropped it.

No problem, I was sitting at my desk at the time, so I would just lean down and pick it up.

It was nowhere to be seen!

I have taken everything out of the PC desk, opened and shaken containers, scoured the carpet, turned my jeans and jeans pockets inside out and shaken them thoroughly. I have checked the soles of my shoes and shook those out too. I have even turned my office chair upside down and sideways, just in case it had become trapped in any of the numerous grooves and attachments. To be on the safe side, I also checked the card reader, in case I'd had a lapse of concentration and put the card back by mistake.


The card has not been seen since.

No problem, I will just buy a new one, which I did today.

I sat at my desk, opened the plastic container - and dropped the card! Luckily this time it was clear to see, but it had given me an idea. I would do a reconstruction. As any police officer will tell you, reconstructions are very useful when trying to solve a mystery, so I staged my own. The card dropped straight down. I tried again - same thing happened.I decided not to try any more, a decision based on the concept known as, "pushing one's luck".

I analyzed all the evidence gathered from the reconstruction and came to a cutting edge decision. "Stuff this for a game of tin soldiers, I'll just put the card in the reader and transfer files.

Not quite so easy.

I had forgotten that while checking to see if I had put the original card back in the reader, I thought I could actually see the card. So being technically minded, I had used a butter knife to poke around a bit. Apparently - a bit too much.

The new card slid right inside.

I shook it, rattled it and rolled it. It now became stuck fast. No problems - I had a plan!

During my earlier run-in with the card reader, I had decided I would get no further with the butter knife, so replaced it with a pair of tweezers in an attempt to prize the non-existent card out of its slot. I would do the same again. Once I had found the tweezers!

I Could not find the darn things anywhere, until after about 20 minutes they were located in a little box I use to keep various cables in.

Guess what - the tweezers did not work either.

I then noticed some little screws on the silver casing and carefully removed both the screws and the casing. Underneath it was solid with no apparent means of getting to the card. By this time I was getting fed up with the whole thing. I decided to prize the bloody thing open with a small screw driver. All was going well until...

...the screwdriver snapped!

So for the sake of a memory card, I now have a broken screw driver, a broken card reader...

And no memory card!

Wherever you may be - be safe
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