Clearing my store room today, in preparation for relocation, I came upon a a well-sealed carton box that I had not opened for 18 years (as of 2018). Inside was this beautiful piece of rather vintage bench digital multimeter, made by Fluke Corporation of the USA.
Upon power-up, on came the brilliant cyan-colour VFD (vacuum fluorescent display….something that has been totally supplanted by LCDs today. Overall, it was a very well-made piece of precision equipment.
I bought it for around SGD2,000 in 1998, in the heyday of my small electronics assembly business. At that time, the business was good, but looking back I think it was a kinda fluke, given that I was 99% engineer and only 1% businessman.
Business failed in 2000, and I had to “lelong” most of the equipment; but I kept back this one.
*lelong = auction, in Malay
As CRT Television maxed out in size about 15 years ago (at 33″), manufacturers sought new technologies for larger screens. One of them was the Rear Projection TV.
However to me, it was at best a desperate attempt to squeeze the last drop of juice from an antiquated set of know-how. The screens were large, no doubt; with sizes going up to 60 inches diagonal (maybe even larger). But they were huge boxes. And the resolution, clarity and contrast were poor, to say the least. Perhaps there was consolation to the owners who could demonstrably and unmistakably prove to their neighbours and visitors that they were people who could see the big picture….LOL.
I contemplated buying a set before, but the thought of having an Incredible Bulk of a box eating up half my living room was simply unbearable.
Not about couples engaging in smoldering hugs and kisses at the airport – but just an old man here fondly reminiscing with affection this day 18 years ago.
28 March 1998 : my tiny crew of workers and I set out to test and commission the Public Information Displays at the spanking new KLIA at Sepang. It was only with 200% passion and dedication that my team (including my HM) managed to design, develop, manufacture and commission in record time the total of 157 displays boards. And saved my client – the main contractor – a ruinous penalty of RM15,000 per day.
Just in time for a site inspection by the YAB Dr M the following week.
I wonder if the displays are still there at KLIA.