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It's That Time Once Again

Yes, that lovely time of year, when University of Chicago music students engage in the hair-raising, soul-searing, students-in-other-departments-terrifying ritual of Comps. Technically, they started on Friday with the handing out of the first set of analysis exams, but I'm not taking those.

Instead, I get the joy of re-taking my history exam (1800 - Present) tomorrow morning at 9:00. Joy of joys. I feel much better prepared for it than I was last year, though. I have a better grasp of the greater narratives of music history, and I can match the name of some scholars to the ideas that they wrote about. I'm pretty sure I'll pass thi time, but still . . . the caterpillars in my tummy are busily turning into butterflies . . .

And now for something completely different. Does anyone know any tricks for making a recalcitrant "s" key actually work again? Using copy-paste for a single letter gets irritating very quickly, especially since the modern keyboard doesn't really have the old-fashioned long s.

Comments

( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
meggins
Sep. 16th, 2008 02:37 am (UTC)
Best of luck on the exam. I think you'll do well.

Can't help with the "s" key; sorry.
frenchpony
Sep. 16th, 2008 11:31 am (UTC)
Thank you! I'm just going to go over my notes one last time this morning, and I should be all set.

The "s" key decided to start working again on its own. This is a good sign.
dot_o_choillmor
Sep. 16th, 2008 07:04 am (UTC)
Good luck!

frenchpony
Sep. 16th, 2008 11:32 am (UTC)
Thank you!
elliska
Sep. 16th, 2008 12:19 pm (UTC)
Is it a laptop or a computer keyboard? In either case, get a can of compressed air (from a hardware store or autoparts store) and blow it between your keys all along each row of keys on your keyboard to blow out anything that got in there (you'll be amazed). Blow in just short little bursts though (about 5 seconds) because compressed air is very cold and can condense water out of the air onto your keyboard and that would be Bad.

If it is a regular computer keyboard and blowing it out doesn't work, then pry that s key off gently with a screw driver and stick it back on. That sometimes helps. If that doesn't work, the circuit board under it is is probably bad, so just buy another keyboard (cheap ones are under $15).

If it is a laptop keyboard and blowing it out doesn't work, you are basically screwed. You can pry off those keys too, but I've never once in 15 years of IT work seen that work on a laptop. Laptop keyboards fry out pretty easily and fixing it cost little less than a new laptop. If its under warranty still, that is covered. If not, and you don't want a new laptop, you can buy a regular keyboard (USB) and attach it (but that kind of makes it less portable, I know).

In Word (and other Office products), you can program another key combination to be 's.' I can tell you how to do that if blowing out the keyboard doesn't work.

Good luck on your exam!
frenchpony
Sep. 16th, 2008 08:21 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the idea! My "s" key was working again today, but I went and bought a can of compressed air anyway. I'll probably spritz it on the keyboard sometime today or tomorrow and see what comes up.

The exam went . . . not bad. There were a variety of questions that I felt qualified to answer, so I didn't really feel pushed into answering anything I didn't know how to answer. I could make arguments and cite major sources from memory, and I had much less of a feeling that I was bullshitting my way through it than I did last year. I hope these are all signs that I will pass the test!
perelleth
Sep. 17th, 2008 06:44 pm (UTC)
I hope the exams go perferct.. and the rest of students survive the shock!
Regarding the s key, I'm sorry I cannot be of help. Seems like replacing it for a new one would be a new option ( at least that is what our ICT officer did with my obnoxious "n" a few months ago...:-)
frenchpony
Sep. 17th, 2008 07:53 pm (UTC)
The exam went well, I think. I felt like I was in control of it, that I had a choice of questions to answer, and that I could make cogent arguments and back them up without bullshitting my way through the exam like I did last year. We'll find out in October, I suppose.
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )

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