• that guy over there (unregistered)

    its all smoke & mirrors :(

  • Warren (unregistered)

    Could it have been fixed over a web interface?

  • Inhibeo (unregistered)

    TRWTF is the laser sensor. Surely the weighbridge can detect the presence of a large truck...by its weight?

  • snoofle (cs)

    Since those scales are usually for fairly large trucks, instead of using a laser beam, why just let the thing be activated only if a certain minimum amount of weight is on the scale? It's unlikely that creepy crawlies, or even a couple of grizzly bears joy riding in a pickup would fool that.

  • Dave (unregistered)

    Shouldn't the company developing the mirror have tested it in different environmental conditions before installing a production version. With trucks going by this sensor it will probably undergo some severe conditions.

  • Dave (unregistered) in reply to snoofle

    Grizzly bears in a pick up truck would fool me.

  • Justice (cs)

    I want to believe that picture has been faked somehow. Otherwise, I can only conclude that the child is some sort of Spider Shaman who will one day conjure an army of the beasts and destroy us all.

    Also, why wasn't the operator trained to perform these basic maintenance tasks? It really shouldn't be necessary to call the support guy for things like dirt and spiders. The one with the sunlight I can understand though; that's kind of cool as oddball errors go.

  • jgoewert (cs)

    The Huntsman spider is one of the reasons my wife won't let us move to NZ or Australia. She said that if we find a spider like that in our house, we have to just leave and burn the house as it is a total loss.

  • KEv (unregistered) in reply to Warren

    Nice

  • Anon (unregistered) in reply to Warren
    Warren:
    Could it have been fixed over a web interface?

    Nice!

  • evilspoons (cs)

    I work for an automation company. We build stuff like this.

    The first time this happened (ok, maybe second), I'd have the damned laser replaced with a competitor's product or a housing redesigned so friggin' bugs can't infest it.

    As for condensation, that too should've been solved by the laser manufacturer or whoever selected the laser part in the first place. They have environmental specs for this kind of thing for a reason. I know of a large number of optical through-beam devices (laser, LED, etc) that have integrated lens warmers to prevent condensation.

  • SR (unregistered) in reply to that guy over there
    Comment held for moderation.
  • blindman (unregistered)

    I lived in Australia as a kid, and we had a Huntsman spider that lived in the house with us the entire year. We made a game of trying to find it every morning. We never, ever, had any flies in our house!

  • Eevee (unregistered)

    Jesus tapdancing christ. Was it really necessary to show me a giant spider at 8 in the morning? Turns out some people are really creeped out by those!

  • Harrow (unregistered) in reply to SR
    SR:
    I don't often do CAPTCHAs but "appellatio"?
    It's a perfectly cromulent word. It's derived from "appellation" and "fellatio", and means "the art of calling someone a c*cks*cker, especially in a non-obvious way".

    -Harrow.

  • Wizou (unregistered)

    You can't fight nature :)

  • pjt33 (cs) in reply to Inhibeo
    Inhibeo:
    TRWTF is the laser sensor. Surely the weighbridge can detect the presence of a large truck...by its weight?
    That's one half of what I was planning to post. The other hasn't been posted yet: how does a weighbridge work with "no movin' parts"?
  • OzPeter (cs) in reply to jgoewert
    jgoewert:
    The Huntsman spider is one of the reasons my wife won't let us move to NZ or Australia. She said that if we find a spider like that in our house, we have to just leave and burn the house as it is a total loss.
    I take it she doesn't know about the *poisonous* spiders that make a huntsman look like a pussy. Or the snakes .. you know .. the deadly ones?
  • Zylon (cs)

    It's always fun when the picture for an article spoils the punchline.

  • OzPeter (cs) in reply to pjt33
    pjt33:
    Inhibeo:
    TRWTF is the laser sensor. Surely the weighbridge can detect the presence of a large truck...by its weight?
    That's one half of what I was planning to post. The other hasn't been posted yet: how does a weighbridge work with "no movin' parts"?
    Technically not moving parts as in Load Cells that report weight based on deformation.
  • bramster (unregistered) in reply to pjt33
    pjt33:
    Inhibeo:
    TRWTF is the laser sensor. Surely the weighbridge can detect the presence of a large truck...by its weight?
    That's one half of what I was planning to post. The other hasn't been posted yet: how does a weighbridge work with "no movin' parts"?

    Strain Gauges?

  • Mel (cs) in reply to jgoewert
    jgoewert:
    The Huntsman spider is one of the reasons my wife won't let us move to NZ or Australia. She said that if we find a spider like that in our house, we have to just leave and burn the house as it is a total loss.
    There aren't many huntsman spiders in NZ - I never saw one in 27 years of living there. There's also only the odd whitetail and redback (both imported from Aussie, afaik), and katipo. Oh, we also have the spiders used in the movie Arachnophobia. Avondale spiders - scary-looking, but completely harmless.

    You'd be better looking out for a giant weta (again, mostly harmless)...

  • bsaksida (cs) in reply to Inhibeo
    Inhibeo:
    TRWTF is the laser sensor. Surely the weighbridge can detect the presence of a large truck...by its weight?

    If you put 4 cars on that bridge, they will say it is a truck

  • Protector one (unregistered)

    I want me some of that 'battled water'. Sounds tough. Has it been on a tour of duty, or something?

  • Forumtroll (unregistered) in reply to pjt33
    That's one half of what I was planning to post. The other hasn't been posted yet: how does a weighbridge work with "no movin' parts"?

    Wel, it is obvious that you don't know how the flightstick in an F-16 works. The F-16 integrated flightstick is mounted without movable parts inside the cockpit, and does not register movement displacement, but rather the force applied to the central axis of the stick. I guess this "low-tech" weightbridge works from the same principal.

  • SR (unregistered) in reply to Harrow
    Harrow:
    SR:
    I don't often do CAPTCHAs but "appellatio"?
    It's a perfectly cromulent word. It's derived from "appellation" and "fellatio", and means "the art of calling someone a c*cks*cker, especially in a non-obvious way".

    -Harrow.

    I love the way this site's users continually embiggen my vocabulary.

  • RBoy (unregistered) in reply to Eevee
    Eevee:
    Jesus tapdancing christ. Was it really necessary to show me a giant spider at 8 in the morning? Turns out some people are really creeped out by those!

    Move to a different timezone, that should fix the problem.

  • RBoy (unregistered)

    Ok, so if I read this correctly, there's an operator on site, but they cannot be bothered to physically inspect two sensors?

  • Brandon (unregistered) in reply to Mel
    Comment held for moderation.
  • BigG (unregistered) in reply to Justice
    Justice:
    Also, why wasn't the operator trained to perform these basic maintenance tasks? It really shouldn't be necessary to call the support guy for things like dirt and spiders. The one with the sunlight I can understand though; that's kind of cool as oddball errors go.

    When the boss is paying for 24x7 support, the operator is going to be trained to call the support number for ANYTHING. After all, we'd better get our money's worth, right?

  • Me (unregistered) in reply to snoofle
    snoofle:
    Since those scales are usually for fairly large trucks, instead of using a laser beam, why just let the thing be activated only if a certain minimum amount of weight is on the scale? It's unlikely that creepy crawlies, or even a couple of grizzly bears joy riding in a pickup would fool that.

    I would assume the scale itself isn't actually active until the operator presses a button. Once that button was pressed, it would likely kick off a process that weighs the truck for a short period of time (to average fluctuations in weight), then automatically print whatever slip needed printing.

    If the scale is constantly running, even in wait state, you end up wasting a good deal of power. Also, you could run into a situation where that process is getting inadvertantly kicked off everytime something of significant weight (deer, bear, whatever) happens upon the platform.

  • jnareb (cs)
    "Support ain't gonna be no big deal," ...
    Way to taunt Murphy!
  • Helix (cs)

    Oh yeah a real WTF at at last.

    Didn't scott know about microsofts staic anal-ysis tool for SQL injections. When you use this, microsoft garantees that you will not get attacked from intruders.. including spiders.

    http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=58a7c46e-a599-4fcb-9ab4-a4334146b6ba&DisplayLang=en

  • Wyatt (unregistered) in reply to Forumtroll
    Forumtroll:
    That's one half of what I was planning to post. The other hasn't been posted yet: how does a weighbridge work with "no movin' parts"?

    Wel, it is obvious that you don't know how the flightstick in an F-16 works. The F-16 integrated flightstick is mounted without movable parts inside the cockpit, and does not register movement displacement, but rather the force applied to the central axis of the stick. I guess this "low-tech" weightbridge works from the same principal.

    That's exactly how they work. You have a load bar, or a series of them, that can electronically measure the stress placed on them. That's actually the high-tech version. The low-tech version has a series of weights and balances of unequal length (a much larger version of the old doctor's scale with the weights you slide).

  • Wyatt (unregistered) in reply to Me
    Me:
    snoofle:
    Since those scales are usually for fairly large trucks, instead of using a laser beam, why just let the thing be activated only if a certain minimum amount of weight is on the scale? It's unlikely that creepy crawlies, or even a couple of grizzly bears joy riding in a pickup would fool that.

    I would assume the scale itself isn't actually active until the operator presses a button. Once that button was pressed, it would likely kick off a process that weighs the truck for a short period of time (to average fluctuations in weight), then automatically print whatever slip needed printing.

    If the scale is constantly running, even in wait state, you end up wasting a good deal of power. Also, you could run into a situation where that process is getting inadvertantly kicked off everytime something of significant weight (deer, bear, whatever) happens upon the platform.

    That scale can run for days of a 12v car battery. The power costs are insignicant compared to the cost of the scale & the operator to run it.

  • Anonymous (unregistered) in reply to Inhibeo
    Inhibeo:
    TRWTF is the laser sensor. Surely the weighbridge can detect the presence of a large truck...by its weight?
    They're not just for weighing trucks. If you're weighing a car, or an empty container, you can't rely on a weight limit to detect its presence.
  • Helix (cs) in reply to Wyatt

    which weightscale operator would even think of asking for 24/7 on-site support.

    I mean I wouldn't even bother asking a bout tech support becuase it is such a simple device, microcontroller, 4 strain guages embedded into the load holding rails and a screen/standard output.

  • ChiefDanGeorge (unregistered) in reply to SR

    I think you have to be in Appalachia to get appellatio.

  • ChiefDanGeorge (unregistered) in reply to ChiefDanGeorge

    Ack, supposed to have quoted someones captcha above.

    My spider in equipment story was finding a black widow in a hoffman box that housed some of our equipment. Startling to open it up preparing to stick my hand in to tune a frequency card.

    ChiefDanGeorge:
    I think you have to be in Appalachia to get appellatio.
  • rohypnol (cs)

    OMFG, I wet my pants!

  • amischiefr (cs) in reply to bsaksida
    bsaksida:
    Inhibeo:
    TRWTF is the laser sensor. Surely the weighbridge can detect the presence of a large truck...by its weight?

    If you put 4 cars on that bridge, they will say it is a truck

    Who the fuck cares? It's a manned weigh station, what's the worst that is going to happen: a receipt is printed with the weight of 4 cars?

  • Code Dependent (cs) in reply to ChiefDanGeorge
    ChiefDanGeorge:
    I think you have to be in Appalachia to get appellatio.
    Just imagine an apple necklace instead:

    http://www.radioparadise.com/graphics/covers/l/B000002ITU.jpg

  • Ole Christian Tvedt (unregistered)

    Darn. I had to adblock that image and un-whitelist TDWTF. See what you've done?

  • Americium (unregistered) in reply to pjt33
    Comment held for moderation.
  • al (unregistered) in reply to amischiefr

    Sensors can be used to make sure that the driver (and/or operator) isn't trying to cheat - keeps the truck fully on the scale. Leaving an axle off the scale will result in a low weight reading.

  • Jeremy Friesner (unregistered) in reply to Eevee
    Eevee:
    Jesus tapdancing christ. Was it really necessary to show me a giant spider at 8 in the morning? Turns out some people are really creeped out by those!

    Easy cure for arachnophobia: every time you see a spider, think to yourself how cute and cuddly it is, and that it will be your friend if you are nice to it. Repeat until you no longer see spiders as a threat.

    YMMV, of course...

  • AndyL (unregistered) in reply to Anonymous
    Anonymous:
    Inhibeo:
    TRWTF is the laser sensor. Surely the weighbridge can detect the presence of a large truck...by its weight?
    They're not just for weighing trucks. If you're weighing a car, or an empty container, you can't rely on a weight limit to detect its presence.
    So what? Put a red button next to the platform so that you can trigger a measurement if the automatic system doesn't catch it.
  • Weng (cs) in reply to Helix

    Me. My vendors. These scales are the chokepoint of operations for a company that operates based on weight. They fail, you make no money until it's fixed. If this were one of the ones at the side-of-highway weigh stations, sure, you can get away without having support on those because you can just close them (and they're closed half the damn time anyway), but when the billable or payable amount is ({Truck full weight - truck empty weight} * some rate) you absolutely positively can not afford to have downtime. Yes, it's a simple system, but yes, they do break.

  • ChiefDanGeorge (unregistered) in reply to AndyL

    The laser could have been at the very front of the scale to verify that the truck is completely on the measurement pad. They want to catch overloaded trucks so if the trailer wheels aren't on the pad, the reading would be less.

  • Code Dependent (cs) in reply to al
    al:
    Sensors can be used to make sure that the driver (and/or operator) isn't trying to cheat - keeps the truck fully on the scale. Leaving an axle off the scale will result in a low weight reading.
    In a different life, I drove a concrete truck. One day we had a pour inside a Louisiana-Pacific lumber mill, and they weighed our trucks going in (full) and coming out (empty). After I left the first time, someone at the mill called our dispatcher and told him that based on my truck's weight, I wasn't empty. This proved true on subsequent visits as well; my weight was substantially more than the other trucks. The reason, it turned out, was that I had a "log" in my drum. That's concrete terminology for a buildup of dried concrete on the fins inside the drum.

    Later that week, they rented a big air compressor and a small, hand-held jackhammer and had me get down inside the drum to break it loose. It was hot, nasty work... no air movement and lots of dust (loud as hell, too). I was wearing a mask, but it didn't stop all of the dust. After a while I got a nosebleed. I was going to get out right away, but then inspiration struck. I stayed in the truck for a few more minutes and let the white mask get thoroughly soaked with blood. Then I went in to the dispatcher.

    He took one look and ordered me to clean up and call my wife to come get me. One of the other guys had to get in my drum and finish up, and I got to go home. Hehehe!

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