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The Voice of the DBA

Steve Jones is the editor of SQLServerCentral.com and visits a wide variety of data related topics in his daily editorial. Steve has spent years working as a DBA and general purpose Windows administrator, primarily working with SQL Server since it was ported from Sybase in 1990. You can follow Steve on Twitter at twitter.com/way0utwest

DIY

Last month the LCD screen on our treadmill went out. We bought it last Christmas (06) as a present for my wife and I and with all the snow in 07, it was a nice addition to the household, letting us work out with bad weather outside. However the LCD dropped, nothing at all on it, and so my wife is on me to get it fixed. She could do it, but she's as busy as I am, perhaps more so, and tends to leave the physical stuff to me (she has enough of it with horses), and I like moving things around.

I've been slow to get started, but today I decided to call and see what could be done. The guy on the other end from Reebok was nice, had me disassemble a few parts, which had me sweating at 10am as I had to tip things over work out screws, lift things, etc. Eventually we diagnosed a bad controlled board, ordered a new one for $150n and thing should be working in 2 weeks. Well before the first snow (I hope)!!

To me it's no big deal to replace the board myself, messing with the connections and stuff. It will cost me time and $150 and the trip out from the store for professionals was $120 + parts, and perhaps a charge for the second trip. So I save money. It's no different than me replacing the blades or even the tie rod on our mower, or sharpening the bush hog blades myself. I get to mess with something, learn about it, develop a new skill, and save money.

I consider myself a software guy. I don't necessarily want to do it for a living, but I've enjoyed working on software, tinkering here and there, building my own website, including blog software, and learning about computers. I also replaced my own video card this weekend, not a big deal, but something not everyone does.

I think that many IT people are natually DIY'ers, and curious how things work. They like to mess with things and I'm always amazed how many IT people I know dive in and do things themselves.

This probably should be an editorial by itself. Maybe someday. 

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