Go Ahead Kick Your Computer

Back in India a few years back I was at a friend’s house when suddenly the lights went out. Initially we thought it was a power failure but soon noticed that the lights in the next house were still on. The friend’s mother said

“Oh, I will be right back”.

I saw her walk into the kitchen (this was during the day time) and she came out with a heavy stick in her hand. She walked to the fuse box and WHAAAACK. She hit the box as hard as she could. Nothing happened. WHAAAACK. And the light was back on!!!

My friend said this is what she does with everything. If the TV is giving her trouble, she whacks it with a newspaper and it usually works, If the refrigarator is giving her trouble she whacks it with the broom.

It was the funniest thing I ever saw and have not thought much about the woman who whacks electronics into starting again. But, it looks like she was on to something :

For the first time, you can hit your computer and get a meaningful response! Using Linux® and the Hard Drive Active Protection System (HDAPS) kernel drivers, you can access the embedded accelerometers on Lenovo (formerly IBM®) ThinkPads, then process the accelerometer data to read specific sequences of “knocking” events — literally rapping on the laptop case with your knuckles — and run commands based on those knocks. Double tap to lock the screen, and knock in your secret code to unlock. Tap the display lid once to move your mp3 player to the next track. The possibilities are endless.

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