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September 22, 2003 11:00 AM

Broken: ATM buttons

Rui Patrício writes from Portugal:

Here's a nice picture of an ATM in Portugal with the buttons in the wrong order.
Update Oct 2: Bruno Figueiredo writes from Portugal that this is "not an error in design. Vandals take off the buttons with a knife and glue them back on in a different order."


Groovy! I remember we used to do this at school, to the BBC micros! Good times! :-)

Posted by: Chunder at November 6, 2003 11:38 AM

That's a really clever trick. *bows*

Posted by: Senso at March 30, 2004 11:03 PM

At my dorm in college, a similar incedent would involve the elevator buttons on each floor. They were placed beside each other, instead of above and below each other. The buttons would also rotate easily. It was not hard to grip the buttons if you have slightly long fingernails and rotate them in the housing so the arrows were pointing in different directions. Thus this confused people and they would press the wrong direction frequently.

For someone who lived there long enough, they remembered the left button was for up, and the right button for down. The solution to this obviously would be to install the elevator buttons vertically, so even if the buttons themselves were rotated out of position, it was still intuitive as to what direction they went to.

Posted by: Steven W at July 1, 2004 10:07 PM

I can't believe nobody mentioned that the *design* of the machine is "broken" if the buttons are able to be removed and replaced in this way!

On the same topic, I've heard of (but, thankfully, not experienced first hand) people swapping the signs on rest room doors. Pure evil, but pretty funny (when it doesn't happen to you...)

Posted by: Amos at June 13, 2006 12:16 AM

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