Digital Culture Personal

And the fun goes on…

I throw myself at the tech help knowledge of the readership of the blog. Here’s the situation:

Unpack laptop, plug laptop in, laptop works fine.
Listen to music on laptop all night, since it’s the only entertainment we have.
Thunderstorms all night.
Next day, laptop won’t stay booted: it boots, and lets you do somethings, then after 3-10 minutes of running, freezes, the screen goes wonky (typically a bunch of horizontal flickering lines) and it dies. Just powers down…no warning, nothin’.

My rough diagnosis: it acts like it’s overheating. I’m not sure why that would be the case suddenly (is there any chance of elevation effecting it??). I removed the fans and heatsink, and there’s practically no heatsink paste left. My brother in law is bringing a tube for me to use over the weekend, so I’ll clean and reapply that. The really strange thing is that when it works, it’s perfect…nothing seems wrong. Then BOOM, dead.

Ideas? It’s a Sager laptop, Pentium 4 1.5GhZ. ANY ideas/help would be appreciated.

By griffey

Jason Griffey is the Director of Strategic Initiatives at NISO, where he works to identify new areas of the information ecosystem where standards expertise is useful and needed. Prior to joining NISO in 2019, Jason ran his own technology consulting company for libraries, has been both an Affiliate at metaLAB and a Fellow and Affiliate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University, and was an academic librarian in roles ranging from reference and instruction to Head of IT at the University of TN at Chattanooga.

Jason has written extensively on technology and libraries, including multiple books and a series of full-periodical issues on technology topics, most recently AI & Machine Learning in Libraries and Library Spaces and Smart Buildings: Technology, Metrics, and Iterative Design from 2018. His newest book, co-authored with Jeffery Pomerantz, will be published by MIT Press in 2024.

He has spoken internationally on topics such as artificial intelligence & machine learning, the future of technology and libraries, decentralization and the Blockchain, privacy, copyright, and intellectual property. A full list of his publications and presentations can be found on his CV.
He is one of eight winners of the Knight Foundation News Challenge for Libraries for the Measure the Future project (, an open hardware project designed to provide actionable use metrics for library spaces. He is also the creator and director of The LibraryBox Project (, an open source portable digital file distribution system.

Jason can be stalked obsessively online, and spends his free time with his daughter Eliza, reading, obsessing over gadgets, and preparing for the inevitable zombie uprising.

5 replies on “And the fun goes on…”

Elevation: Alright, if your laptop is like mine, it’s an air-cooled system, which means that as you get higher up in the atmospthere, the air gets thinner, which means less movement of air by the fan, and this, less cooling.

Here’s some advice: put the laptop over a vent and turn on the AC. Turn it on and see how long it lasts.

My best bet is that Tennessee’s atmosphere isn’t used to any type of current technology and some type of interstate defense system is in place to shutdown anything more advanced than a toaster. However, at night, their system is in “sleep” mode.

That’s my best guess.

Is your battery charged? The only time I’ve ever experienced that kind of shutdown is when the battery was just totally dead. Perhaps your battery pack was damaged by a surge and now fails to adequately charge your battery? I dunno, good luck!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *