Can things get any worse(r)?

My earlier attempt to try to post something every week went into a disastrous and epic fail when I suffered multiple hardware failures ... who knows where all this bad karma is coming from.

First thing to die was my iPhone which was only ~5 weeks old. It was a slow death starting with no early indications other than the cell reception dying first. I initially thought it was due to the nearby cell tower was under maintenance so I didn't think much about it. It was only about 12 hours later when the WiFi then proceeded to die and wouldn't connect to any access points at work or home. Going online to do troubleshooting, the apple website suggested to do a network reset - tried it and failed. The phone then proceeded to act weird and then went south of the border by displaying the dreaded screen asking me to plugin to iTunes to restore. iTunes didn't work and I kept getting the 1611 error which supposedly meant liquid damage. After an on-the-phone diagnosis, I was asked to bring in the phone to a service centre. Since Malaysia has no Genius bars, I had to go to an authorized service centre instead and lucky for me it was in 1Utama behind MacCity. Two weeks later, I get a new (possibly refurbished??) iPhone but I lost all the content from the previous phone ... which was nothing since it was close to new anyways.

Next to die was my PC workstation .... with a flaky motherboard. It still runs but I have lost all PCI bus lanes and thus no graphic expansion slots are available. Luckily, the board still had an onboard GPU and I used that to boot and continue work. I tried to buy a replacement motherboard from China but unfortunately, while the replacement arrived safely and installed OK it just wouldn't boot. Luckily I managed to get a refund for the faulty board and I am currently looking for a similar board to replace in the future.

The problem with branded PCs like the Acer I have is that the boards are so customised that I can't find any other replacement without sacrificing the features - the original motherboard has 4 USB headers (plus 4 onboard USB ports) which is really rare on commercial motherboards. Additionally, it has a firewire header for the IEEE1394 800 front port AND the case switches (on/reset/lights/) are all on a single plug instead of multiple individual plugs for OEM boards. Using a normal motherboard would required quite a lot of work to rewire the case to work ... that's a future project for now if I can't find another replacement board.

Everything has settled down for now (fingers crossed) and I hope it stays that way.