Visit from a sad and hot R2D2

Debugging is a crucial skill in the world of software engineering. It is far more common to read code than to write it. Knowing how to approach a problem systematically is what makes a good developer, an even better one. The best part? You can transfer this skill to any problem you try to solve.

Let me tell you a story, where I facepalmed so hard, that I still had the mark the next day. Denkanstoss (thought-provoking impulse). This is how my wife called it. Pretty accurate, if you ask me.

The Initial Symptoms

So what exactly happened? A sad R2D2. Every time I unlocked my phone it played this strange "failure" sound. I've never heard it before.

Another feature that I unlocked: Pocketwarmer. My phone became constantly hot. Even worse, the battery life plummeted from 100% to 35% in just two hours. Something was definitely wrong.

This is fine

The Obvious first

The first question you should always ask is: What changed? The system was running just fine before, so what are the recent changes made to the system that might have caused this behaviour?

Well, the most obvious change was the installation of some new apps. New apps are often the culprits, right? Sure! So like with code, let's remove these changes and see if that fixes the issue here.

Some deinstallations later...

I've won more space, but my phone was still a sad and hot R2D2.

The Energy Consumption Investigation

Alright, since that didn't work, it is time for a deeper dive. Maybe an update on an app is causing this issue. Time to look into the energy consumption of the remaining apps. Look at that! Nothing...
Everything seemed normal, nothing that spiked persisted. Clearly, I needed to look deeper.

Ol' Reliable

A simple restart can solve many tech issues. Especially hardware-related. So, let's go! Phone restarting, booting, some apps are launching and then the sad noise. But this time it popped up a notification: "This chip couldn't be read". Huh?! Chip, what chip?

The Eureka Moment

After a little bit of thinking it struck me: my identity card! It is my ID card! The day before I went out and just wanted to take my ID card which is usually in my wallet, so I tucked it inside my phone case. This was causing the chaos. Positioned directly behind the phone, it triggered the NFC reader constantly. Thus creating this hot sad R2D2.

The Resolution

Once known I've got a simple solution for this problem. I just put my ID card in an RFID-blocking case. I could also remove it, but where is the fun in that?!

The Lesson Learned

This experience showed me the value of applying structured debugging skills to everyday problems. Solutions often hide in the details, waiting to be discovered with a bit of patience and persistence. The journey was frustrating, but the triumph was sweet and satisfying.

Goodbye, you sad and hot R2D2, I hope to never see you again.

*sad beep*

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