Monday, July 19, 2010

Mystery Object Found in York

Lots of strange objects have been found in York over the years, many of them of Roman origin.

Here's one that is a bit more modern but nevertheless strange.

You can't tell the scale from this but actually it's quite large: perhaps a couple of yards across.

It's in a communal area outside the Ladies' and Gents' toilets at the Roger Kirk Building, University of York.

So you come out and realise hey, that must be the sink.

It doesn't come with any kind of instructions though. So I watched with interest as everyone came out, gazed at it for a bit, looked for some way to turn it on - - and then the act of waving your arms near it makes it pour out hot water, like a sprinkler fountain.

There are little teats that are supposed to dispense soap, too, but not one person managed to get them to work whilst I was there. Everyone just pulled and tugged and pushed and finally gave up. I'm sure there's a knack to it, but it's not one that is easily discovered.

But if you want - - say - - a drink of cold water, you can forget it. The water comes in just one temperature: Vey Hot. Indeed, the only instructions anywhere on it warn of the hotness of the water.

All very stylish, maybe, but it needs instructions. Oh, and call me old-fashioned if you like - yes, go on, do it, for I just don't care! - I'd prefer a hot tap that you can turn on and off, and a cold tap that you can turn on and off. And some soap that works. Ahhh, technology, eh?


Anonymous Shooting Parrots said...

Any item designed for general use that needs instructions is probably poorly designed.

Sometimes designers get so carried away with their own cleverness that you are only considered worthy if you can work out how clever they've been. Like Indiana Jones and the leap of faith.

11:54 am  

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