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On Poor Engineering Decisions

We got a little 8-port 10-gigabit Ethernet switch to act as the (temporary) hub for our statewide dark fiber network. It's from one of our usual vendors, but this thing is... different. I'm pretty sure they OEM'ed it from another company. The CLI is different, the hardware architecture is different, and the lights... well, let's just say that a frantic flashing pattern alternating yellow and green wouldn't be my first choice to indicate a disabled port. You flash things to indicate a PROBLEM, not to highlight that something is not in use.


A short movie showing this phenomenon. It doesn't show up nearly as dramatically on my phone camera as it looks to the eye, unfortunately.

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( 3 comments — Comment )
zarfmouse
Dec. 15th, 2006 05:53 am (UTC)
That's terrible.

I'm constantly amazed at the poor design of LED indicators (and lack of standardization for the indicators) on network switches. Your example is by far the worst I've seen but I'm also annoyed when there's a RED (red means bad) light labeled "collision" that when on means "link" but when flashing means "collision". Or when there are two lights for "traffic" and "collision" so close to each other that when one is illuminated it looks like the other one is too. Or when a light flashes either yellow/orange or green for two different states but the colors are so close to each other that you can't tell.
jlindquist
Dec. 15th, 2006 06:28 pm (UTC)
Perhaps it was designed by an ex-postal worker, who longs for his days in a metropolitan distribution center, with its endless row of truck docks, each with its blinking dock latch light.

(Okay, I got stuck in traffic on IL-53 a few times passing the Palatine PDC...)
recursive
Dec. 15th, 2006 06:50 pm (UTC)
If it was hard to design, it should be hard to use!

(Not.)
( 3 comments — Comment )

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