Author’s Note: “Beat Brass”

For anyone wondering about the origin of this particular evocative phrase for those regrettable times when one must intervene with the hardware personally, it dates back to those wonderful round-about-the-Industrial-Revolution-equivalent days, when life was steampunk only without the punk, and when computation was done and equipment was run by twelve tons of brass cogs Рwhich is to say, Stannic cogitators, which is in turn to say, Babbage engines gone critical Рpowered by mighty pressures.

And as such, a sysadmin’s traditional debugging tools included a monkey-wrench and a 14 lb. lump hammer.