One of 'em, R., a part-timer, asked about LEDs, and it turned out that he did a few projects with LEDs himself. He said that he had a few transistors lying around that he didn't use anymore -- would I be interested? Sure, bring it on, if you have to get rid of it!
This morning, after I got out of a meeting, I found a post-it on my desk with his name and internal phone number. Yesterday he was working on the helpdesk and I helped him with a question from a client -- so I thought there was a follow-up question that he needed assistance with.
But it turned out that he had brought all of his electronics with him to give to me.
There were the transistors: BC547s, about 80 of 'em. And about as many green bright LEDs. And six 7-segment displays. And 50 16-pin IC feet. And 42 pieces of the Philips PCF8574AP, an I2C I/O expander -- a bi-directional shift register that can be individually adressed through the I2C bus. And an ultrasonic range finder. He didn't want anything in return -- it was taking up room in his home, and he wanted to get rid of it.
This evening, I've looked around at datasheets, and it turns out that a single PCF8574AP costs USD 2.50 at Futurlec (which is not the webshop with the highest prices...) And the rangefinder costs GBP 26. Which means it totals to more than EUR 100...
I'm not sure he realises the value of what he gave me, so I will ask him again next time I see him if he really doesn't want any compensation for this treasure trove.