Search this site:


March 15, 2004 12:30 AM

Broken: Flight arrival monitor

Amaury Jacquot writes:

I took a picture of this flight arrival monitor at the Las Vegas McCarran airport. You'd expect these to be pretty simple systems, with some sort of embedded OS. Think again! They use Windows 2000 Professional, and thus crash every now and then.


that isn't a crash.

Posted by: sirshannon at March 15, 2004 12:46 AM

It's still broken.

Posted by: Ummagumma at March 15, 2004 07:55 AM

Its pretty funny watching the screens the day after Daylight Savings Time takes effect - they all have the windows notification popup on the screen.

Posted by: Andy at March 15, 2004 03:37 PM

It is not broken. It is just an information message.

Posted by: Anand at March 15, 2004 11:43 PM

It IS broken because the "information message" obscures real information (like flight numbers and times) that would have been displayed if it were not there. The "information message" is of absolutely no help to the main users of this system - the passengers, who just want their flight details.

So you can't argue that this is "just an information message" because it's not information, it's information pollution.

Add the fact the the normal user of this system doesn't have access to a keyboard or mouse and can't do anything to get rid of the pollutant and you have pretty serious breakage.

Definitely broken, broken, broken.

Posted by: Another Mouse at March 16, 2004 12:24 AM

I went on a cruise one time and our cabin's tv got the infamous blue screen of death when I tried to order a movie... figures

Posted by: Shawn Liu at March 30, 2004 03:26 PM

Actually that's windows NT. Surprising they haven't turned off alerts altogether.

Posted by: Some Geek at March 30, 2004 07:46 PM

i once pulled up to the JetBlue terminal at Kennedy airport to find the flight arrivals screen largely obscured by an instant messaging window. it was a riot!

i wish i had had a camera with me.

Posted by: josh hodas at April 1, 2004 01:19 PM

Don't mean to be too anal-rententive, but reguardless of whether it's Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000 or even Windows XP, all of these operating systems are Windows NT. Windows 2k is NT 5.0, and XP is NT 5.1. Don't believe me? Google it or go under the command prompt and type "ver" w/o the quotes.

It is "broken", but it's *probably* not crashed. The operating system is appearently not crashed, but if the application being used to display flights is no longer responding, it has essentially crashed. Even then, the statement "They use Windows 2000 Professional, and thus crash every now and then" implies that BECAUSE it's Windows 200 that it is prone to crashing, which I disagree with. Poor configuration and usage are the most common reasons for Windows NT to crash. With windows 9x though that is a different matter all together. I've seen people look at a Win9x machine the wrong way and get hit with a blue screen of death.

Posted by: etM at July 14, 2004 11:44 AM

Oops... corrections:

Windows 2000*

probably the most common reasons*

Windows 9x*

If it's not a fact, it's an opinion :D

Posted by: etM at July 14, 2004 11:47 AM

we've established its not 2000, and not a crash, but shame on you for saying that! 2k is the most stable os to date!

Posted by: Eric at July 18, 2004 01:02 AM

The most stable OS to date is Mac OS X 10.3 Panther. :P

Posted by: vista904 at August 11, 2004 11:43 AM

XP is better.

Posted by: thedarklord22 at September 6, 2004 08:21 PM

XP Stinks!!!!!!!!!!!

Mac Rules!

Posted by: Johnsmith34 at October 23, 2004 12:26 PM

WindowsXP is the Devil.... almost as bad as WindowsME. Windows 2000 is the only way to go.

Try getting spyware out of a Windows XP computer!!!!! If you dont hold you tongue just the right way while trying to fix will just get worse.

My experience anyways!!

Posted by: armelind at February 13, 2005 04:21 AM

Nah. Just use Spyware Doctor. Works great.

Posted by: Ben at March 16, 2005 03:45 PM


Posted by: hi at April 12, 2005 03:54 PM

Stable OS? Why pay that kind of cash for Mac when you can have a PC running Linux like Kubuntu outperform Vista.

Yes, Vista. Linux has gotten this good.

For years now I've told my local PC vendor just to put the parts together I tell him, like 1Gig memory, 120Gig hard drive, low range gra card from ATI or Nvidia which is supported by Linux or even a cheaper on board type, but then you don't get 3D support, Celeron 2.4, LG CD burner, cheap keyboard, optical mouse for 299 Euro complete. That's a little over 300 $US. Slap Kubuntu on and download all needed applications for free. Off you go, virus free, stable and open with a system that was designed for you, not against you.

I have nothing against Mac, I would buy it if I could afford it, but why spend all that money when all the functionality is there for you under Linux? Because you're a brand slave? If you *must* buy software, you can buy Linux too, which will get you support and printed documentation.

I personally love Kubuntu LTS (the newest version), because you can start the live CD and then install directly from there. If you got Windows installed, you can choose to shrink its partition to make space for linux so you will have two systems on your PC. Once you start your computer a menu will appear where you can select which OS you want to start. This is called a dual boot. However, always make sure to have a backup of all your data before partitioning, incl. emails, bookmarks and so on.

If you're unsure about dual booting, get the live CD, this starts the entire operating system from CD and doesn't touch your harddrive. Once you reboot your PC, everything is just the way it was before. The only drawback in liveCDs is that they are a bit slower since everything has to be loaded off the CD, nothing beats a hard drive installation.

For someone who is used to Windows, Kubuntu is better than Ubuntu, since KDE is not too alien and your culture shock will not be as huge as if you take Gnome. In case you're wondering what I'm talking about, in Windows, what you see, your desktop, is your GUI, your graphical user interface. Windows has only one GUI. Linux based OSs have many different GUI's that sit on top of the window manager, some of them really slim to run on computers with very little memory, some of them elaborate like KDE. You can download a LiveCD with either Ubuntu with Gnome or Kubuntu with KDE and play around to see which one you like better. LiveCDs are also great as rescue tools if your hard drive is infected with viruses (plural = virii?), since they allow you to boot a running system from CD, thus not being affected by the virus.

You can run Linux even *inside* Windows with the help of VMPlayer, VM standing for virtual machine. This makes the guest operating system appear like an application, and you can actually minimize the window of say PCBSD (a free UNIX based operating system based again on FreeBSD which is what's really under the hood of Mac) and do stuff as normal in Windows, and use the virtual (guest) operating system for save web browsing.

But start with the Live CD, I think that is the least complicated way to fumble Linux, which we should be calling GNU/Linux actually. Why? Go to or and let him explain it to you;-)

Posted by: Someone at June 14, 2006 07:35 PM

Comments on this entry are closed

Previous Posts: