Sadly, even going back 30-35 yrs, a LOT of companies I contracted R+D for, often paid big bucks for designs that just made it past
their warranty. We got bonus amounts on how close we could get it. In some service departments (who we worked with), they even
ran competitions ! The one big difference to these days was that - There was NO compromise on quality / (design) reliability !
Some of the "fixes" were ingenious :-) I occasional still get asked, but stopped doing that [email protected]
a long time ago. It still happens a lot though.
Edit: OK I have to confess.
It was the mid 70s (IIRC), someone had just come up with the idea to connect one of our Monroe calculators (nixie tubes) to a cash drawer !!
It was a gold mine, but they needed to ensure that it had a limited life. I made up the interface card to tie the systems together, which gave the
cashier - items, totals and date - and controlled the cash drawer. I then made up a separate diode logic pcb (100's of diodes from the nixie array)
and set up links to create a "date code". At this point the AND array would latch and turn off the drawer control.
The service techs simply swapped out with the next date code ! I still remember my bestowed hero status ... ahhh memories