Dell + Broken DVD Drive = My Life – (1 hour 9 minutes)

So my DVD burner broke this weekend. It would stick half-way out when the machine would reboot, and when I was able to get a disc in it, it wouldn’t recognize the disc. Also, when I would press the tray-eject button, either it wouldn’t work at all or would be delayed several minutes. I gave Dell tech support a ring, as the machine is still under warranty. It took me an hour and nine minutes to convice them that the DVD Drive was physically broken (not just a software issue). They still have to call me back with a service number. So, that completely ate my morning. To add to it, because the call was so long, I had to bike to school rather than walk (I had planned on walking today). I got all geared up, only to discover that my bike lock was full of ice, which I had to melt before I could unlock my bike so that I could bike to school. Ugh.

So on the weekend (Saturday) I did get a little programming done. I can roll in 3D, but there are a few things that still need fixing. For example:

  • Sometimes the keyboard input gets reversed, particularly after going upside down
  • When rolling, you roll until you are upside down, then the roll reverses itself and you roll back upright
  • Keyboard movement isn’t based on frame deltas yet (so depending on how fast your machine runs it, you move faster/slower
  • When moving up/down, the rate of movement isn’t quite right – when you pitch slightly up or down, you move quite fast up and down, when you really shouldn’t be moving that fast up/down
  • Probably some other stuff I can’t think of right now…

So yeah, I got my work cut out for me.

Oh, here’s a preliminary in-engine shot of the P.O.N.Y. spacecraft for my 4 Elements 6 contest entry. I started whipping up the model Friday during my lunch break, and put in a bit of work after school on Friday and today. This is in a different project – one I had set up to load models in XNA and display them, so this isn’t anything like what the final game will be like (at least I hope not!). That, and I haven’t done any texturing or working with materials yet. Consider it a teaser, or a reward for visiting my blog:

EDIT: I guess I should mention: the blue funny looking thing near the “engines” is a custom mouse cursor (in engine).



  1. Todd


    My name is Todd and I’m with Dell’s online outreach program. We saw your post about your DVD drive and I wanted to stop in and see whether you had gotten everything resolved. If not, feel free to email me at and I’ll see what I can do to help. Please include my first name (Todd) in the subject line of the message so it can quickly be routed through to me.

    Thank you,


    Customer Advocate
    Dell, Inc.

  2. Joel

    Yes, everything has been resolved. It was replaced with an identical drive, which seems to be working as it should. I appreciate the concern.

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