Wednesday, 6 December 2006

On The Trail Of The Blue Tooth Dongle

I can't really imagine Elvis singing "Don't step on my Blue Tooth Dongle" - it simply doesn't have the same ring to it.

Equally I cannot fathom where IT people dredge up the generic names for perfectly simple pieces of equipment.

At my last place of employment we had a server labelled "Black Lettuce". I am still uncertain as to how IT came up with this name. Certainly the box was black, but "lettuce"....?

The dictionary defines a Dongle thus " A hardware device that serves as copy protection for certain software by rendering the software inoperable when the device is not plugged into a printer port"

Clearly there is nothing worse than an inoperable dongle - think how exposed one might be to the possibility of being rendered inoperable.

The one I seek however is the of the "Blue Tooth" genus. To put it simply, a small device that I can plug in to the USB port of my PC which allows my blue tooth-enabled telephone and iPAQ to 'talk' to each other in a soothing manner.

Singapore is well endowed with Dongles of various behaviours. There are dongles for storage, dongles for infrared and I am delighted to report, blue tooth dongles.

As with other electronic equipment, it is probably best to head to Sim Lim Square where a good bargain can be had if one is prepared to bargain. It is near the Bugis MRT station and has surplanted the Funnan Centre as the place to buy such equipment

I would not however buy a camera from Sim Lim Square as I much prefer the reliability of my favourite camera shop - Lords Camera who are at #01-79 in Lucky Plaza. Ask for James for a good deal and friendly service.

Our small staff went to Tiong Bahru for lunch and a spot of stationery shopping. The shop's catalogue listed a dongle device. However as it wasn't described in such terms I spent a good few minutes gesticulating with my hands and attempting to explain to a bemused older sales lady, the dimensions of a blue tooth dongle.

Both the terminology and my gestures no doubt reinforced in her mind what strange and obessive people Expat males are! She did take one or two steps back during my explanation and assured me as she scurried away that they didn't have any such thing in stock.

Just as we were leaving the shop however I spied one in a lower rack and the purchase was made. This just goes to show that persistance pays off.

"Mind me Dongle!"

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