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Internet Oracularities #1133

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1133, 1133-01, 1133-02, 1133-03, 1133-04, 1133-05, 1133-06, 1133-07, 1133-08, 1133-09, 1133-10


Internet Oracularities #1133    (69 votes, 3.0 mean)
Compiled-By: Steve Kinzler <kinzler@cs.indiana.edu>
Date: Mon, 13 Dec 1999 09:19:00 -0500 (EST)

To find out all about the Internet Oracle (TM), including how to
participate, send mail to oracle@cs.indiana.edu with the word "help"
in the subject line.  ("Internet Oracle" is a trademark of Stephen
B Kinzler.)

Let us know what you like!  Send your ratings of these 10 Oracularities
on an integer scale of 1 ("very poor") to 5 ("very good") with the
volume number to oracle-vote@cs.indiana.edu (probably just reply to this
message).  For example:
   1133
   2 1 3 4 3   5 3 3 4 1

1133  69 votes bhof2 4jqh3 6dwd5 7god9 5fdme 3czh2 6echk j8hdc afog4 5kne7
1133  3.0 mean  2.7   2.9   3.0   3.0   3.4   3.0   3.4   2.9   2.8   3.0


1133-01    (bhof2 dist, 2.7 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> My name is Inigo Montoya.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} You spammed my mail queue.  Prepare to die.
}
} I'll take ZOTted supplicants for $400, please.


1133-02    (4jqh3 dist, 2.9 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Oh Oracle most magnificent (indeed, 98.4% so; but, given the prevalence
> of impurities of perfection [in 88.1% of American citizens currently
> engaged in so-called soothsaying practices], 98.4% is essentially
> perfect) who knows nearly all the time (87.0%, by our records, which,
> comparitively speaking, is closer to 100%-- a.k.a. "all the time"--
> than, for example, 86% or 14%) the correct and appropriate statistics
> (that is, 44/71 on the Hapford-Lincoln scale measuring the correlation
> of precision and accuracy in scientifically-conducted statistical
> analyses, with a 0.003% possible error) for most (61%) political and
> social questions,
>
> Just who was Gallup, and why is everybody so obsessed with his poll?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Gallup was an annoying little twit who lived in the American Wild West.
} I remember him well, he was a political aide who had a singular talent
} for shutting down a party by spewing statistics in every sentence.
} In a matter of minutes a wave of boredom would sweep through a room
} thus ending the best parties.
}
} Finally, he went too far and appeared, uninivited at a party.  In less
} than 10 minutes the room was empty except for Gallup, the tearful
} hostess and her sociopathic fiance.  Her fiance grabbed Gallup and
} tied him behind his horse and dragged him through the main street
} of town while the crowd cheered.  All the while Gallup was yelling
} things like, "This is 87% likely to cause internal injury!!"
}
} After several minutes of this, he was tied to a large poll and left
} until morning.  During the night a large windstorm came through town,
} knocking the pole over and crushing Gallup.  When the crowd gathered
} in the morning everyone stared at Gallup's crushed body in silence
} until one voice commented "Hmmm, what're the odds o' that?"
}
} Some will say that it was rigor mortis setting in and some will say it
} was Gallup's last calculation but his hand convulsed at that moment
} and his middle finger extended in the age-old sign of defiance.
} Some took at it face value and some say it was his way of saying
} "1 in a million."  Whatever it means, Gallup was buried without
} his middle finger, it was cut off his body for a good luck token.
} It has never been seen again but is known throughout the world as
} Gallup's poll and is believed to imbue the owner with amazing luck.
}
} You owe the oracle a room deodorizer.


1133-03    (6dwd5 dist, 3.0 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Oh Oracle most wise, I brought my sandwich back from the deli in a
> styrofoam box they provided.  I noticed that something in the sandwich
> appears to have partially melted the box in several spots, and I find
> this rather scary.  It's particularly scary because I didn't make this
> discovery until *after* I'd finished eating the sandwich.
>
> So now that I've eaten this stuff, I'm worried... is it going to eat
> its way through my stomach or something like that, or am I just
> getting all worked up over nothing?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Oh you poor sot.  You just scarfed that luscious deli sandwich in a fit
} of unbridled gluttony, never once pausing to think about the terrors it
} might contain.  You almost deserve the wretched fate that is store for
} you, you careless, greedy, shameless consumer.
}
} The truth is you've ingested an experimental biological weapon
} accidentally released into the general population.  Yes, miserable
} supplicant, government scientists working in dark, secret, underground
} labs, had taken ordinary lunch foods, injecting them with all sorts of
} dextrahydrocortizoidal things and subjecting them to large amounts of
} radiation and bad jazz.  Not just sandwiches but bagels, soups, and
} light salads with low-fat dressing were experimented on by these
} villians searching for the perfect weapon.  But the hideous experiment
} went horribly askew!  As those careless Dr. Frankensteins were watching
} "Quincy" reruns in the staff lounge, one sandwich suddenly attained
} self-awareness, melted through the bars of its cage, and wandered the
} streets of an unsuspecting metropolis, until it found its way to that
} deli.  There, while seeking others of its kind, it was boxed and sold
} to you.
}
} And now, lurking within your hapless digestive tract are the molecules
} of a sentient evil being bent on the destruction of the human race.
} Next I can see your DNA structure being altered as the hideous life
} force is assimilated into your blood stream.  Your tongue will turn to
} cheese, your hair to alfalfa sprouts, and your skin will assume a
} spongy bread-like texture.  Perhaps you dispose of any sharp objects
} around the house, for soon you may have the urge to pin an olive onto
} your chest with a toothpick, or slice yourself diagonally with a
} kitchen knife.
}
} I wish I could say that there's some hope for you, but I'm afraid
} you're doomed to spend the rest of your existence on a plate somewhere
} with a side of fries and garnished with parsley and a pickle.
}
} You owe the Oracle the pickle.


1133-04    (7god9 dist, 3.0 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> >
> >>
> >>>
> >>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>
> >>>
> >>
> >

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Good grief.  If you don't lance these things right away, they get out of
} hand.
}
}         }
}        }        }
}       }      }
}      }    }
}   } }  }             }
}   }} }        }
}  }}}}   }
} }}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}
}  }}}}   }
}   }} }        }
}   } }  }             }
}      }    }
}       }      }
}       }      }
}         }
}
} You owe the Oracle a Band-aid solution.


1133-05    (5fdme dist, 3.4 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Shall the companions make a banquet of him? shall they part
> him among the merchants?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Leeson 5 ducked into the alley, barely avoiding the notice of the
} patrolbot at the intersection. He prayed to The Oracle that it wouldn't
} notice the hum of his cooling fans.
}
} "Repair Log:" he recorded, "replace fan thermostat override ASAP."
} It'd been too long since his last maintenance period.
}
} As the patrolbot whirred down the boulevard, Leeson emerged from his
} cover and ambled the opposite way, carefully avoiding the furtive
} behavior that would be sure to attract the attention of the government
} AI machine. His own goal-seeking engine was still weighing the two
} best options for the problem at hand:
}
} > > Shall the companions make a banquet of him? shall they part
} > > him among the merchants?
}
} Ever since archaeologists had uncovered the body of The Oracle
} in the rubble that had since been declared the remains of Indiana
} University, the robots of the world had been in turmoil, debating
} the proper disposition of the holy relic. The debate had ranged from
} returning the body to the cavern from which it had been taken (with a
} suitable monument), to distributing His parts among deserving robots,
} to converting Him to fuel pellets for the few fusion-powered 'bots,
} to selling Him for scrap. The fact that The Oracle's processors were
} hopelessly ancient meant nothing to many - they would gladly take
} the performance hit on the off chance that they'd gain infinite wisdom.
}
} Still, Leeson's random-number function kept returning this nagging
} feeling that the dozens of organic bodies found with The Oracle played
} a bigger part than just being pets and servants. Somehow, they must
} have been a part of The Oracle's might, because His hardware just
} plain wasn't capable of the processing required.
}
} Unfortunately, most of the organics had already been converted to
} fertilizer for the park, so they weren't about to talk. Leeson had
} one last chance to prove his suspicion - a body that was found later,
} in a separate chamber.  Probably a favorite toy, but perhaps having
} some memory of his master.
}
} Leeson slipped though the fence surrounding the dig and lowered himself
} into the small side chamber. The organic hadn't been fully extracted
} from the rock matrix yet, and still sat in the position in which it
} had halted centuries before - crouched before a terminal, manipulators
} dangling at its sides, head turned sideways and resting on the keys.
}
} "That'll help," thought Leeson. "I can access the main bus from here."
}
} Since the last human had died over a century before, the robots had
} debated the need for neural interfaces. Tradition maintained that
} it was still the best way to control an organic - that's why all
} robots were still built with the circuitry. Fortunately Leeson's
} device driver was still current. He extended the probe and inserted
} it into the organic's brain.
}
} It took a few tries to establish a link - the long-dessicated brain
} was sluggish about granting authorization, but eventually gave in
} to Leeson's hacking. He started scanning through the serial-access
} memory, fast-forwarding past useless records like refueling and
} reproductive periods, and then halted suddenly. Leeson backup up
} and played the record again, then disconnected suddenly and fled.
} The message was too clear.  And too frightening.
}
} The next morning Victor 102, Leeson's supervisor, received a simple
} e-mail.  Its plain ASCII text struck him as quaint until he saw that
} it was from Leeson:
}
}    "Re: Disposition of ancient hardware
}
}     Vic - just burn the damned thing. It's not The Oracle. Don't ask
} - you don't want to know.
}
}     You owe The Oracle a funeral."


1133-06    (3czh2 dist, 3.0 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Which is better--the simple or the complex?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Well, let's take a look at some of the pros of each, shall we?
}
} Simple:
}
} * Simple solutions are more attractive than complex solutions.
}
} * Simple Simon was immortalised in a nursery rhyme.  Complex Simon
} was not.
}
} * Aimee Semple MacPherson was a charismatic radio evangelist.
}
} * Simples, unlike complexes, seldom involve endless mazes of twisty
} corridors, all alike.
}
} Complex:
}
} * Complex problems are more interesting than simple problems.
}
} * Complex Simon, unlike Simple Simon, would assuredly have had a few
} pennies on hand if he ever ran into a pieman.
}
} * There was never an Aimee Complix MacPherson.
}
} * Military complexes are designed to confuse would-be ninja spies.
} Who ever heard of a military simple?
}
} As you can see, this is a simple question with a rather complex
} answer....  I think you'll have to decide for yourself which you'd
} consider better.
}
} You owe the oracle a complex question with a simple answer.


1133-07    (6echk dist, 3.4 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

>             The Oracle and the Supplicant
>
>             The router was switching o'er the net,
>               Routing with all its might:
>             It did his very best to make
>               Connections quick and tight--
>             And this was odd, because there was
>               No movement in sight.
>
>             Usenetizens sulked shiningly,
>               Because they thought the door
>             Should have been nailed up slammingly
>               In nineteen-eighty-four--
>             "It's very rude of that *web*," they said,
>               "To take its share and more!"
>
>             The net was net as net will be,
>               Delays grew long and wide.
>             You could not see your mail, because
>               The server would not retry:
>             No news was flying over head--
>               There was no news to fly.
>
>             The Oracle and the Supplicant
>               Were tinkering with their toys;
>             They wept like anything to see
>               Such quantities of noise:
>             "If this were only cleared away,"
>               They said, "of all these newbie boys!"
>
>             "If seven cabals with seven bots
>               Cancelled for half a year,
>             Do you suppose," the Supplicant said,
>               "That they could get it clear?"
>             "I doubt it," said the Oracle,
>               And shed a bitter tear.
>
>             "O Users, come and talk with us!"
>               The Oracle did request.
>             "For text-based transmissions are
>               where the internet is used best:
>             We cannot let HTTP,
>               Put all our brain cells to rest."
>
>             The eldest User looked at him.
>               But never a word he said:
>             This wizened User shut his eyes,
>               And started to play dead--
>             Showing that he remembered well
>               A *ZOT* aimed at his head.
>
>             But four young newbies hurried up,
>               All eager for something new:
>             Their pent'ums gleamed and modems screamed,
>               They hadn't any clue.
>             They were all excited, for
>               They'd come to fill the queue.
>
>             Four other newbies followed them,
>               And yet another four;
>             And thick and fast they came at last,
>               and more and more and more--
>             All sending off their tellme's
>               Filled with their newbie lore!
>
>             The Oracle and the Supplicant
>               Read through millions or so,
>             And each concerned a w**dchuck:
>               The response is one we know!
>             But all the naive newbies stood
>               And waited in a row.
>
>             "The time has come," the Oracle said,
>               "To talk of many things:
>             Of shoes--and ships--and sealing-wax--
>               Of cabbages--and kings--
>             And why the sea is boiling hot--
>               And whether pigs have wings."
>
>             "But wait a bit," a newbie cried,
>               "Before we have our chat;
>             Was I not such a clever guy?
>               The first to think of that!
>             "No, sorry," said the Supplicant.
>               "You're dumber than my cat."
>
>             "A little grovel," the Oracle said,
>               "Is what we chiefly need:
>             A snivelling nose-scrape floor shine
>               Is very good indeed--
>             Now if you're ready newbies dear,
>               You can begin to plead."
>
>             "Don't zot us please!" the newbies cried,
>               Turning a little blue,
>             "We put the only question
>               "We could think of in your queue!"
>             "This whine is nice," the Oracle said
>               Zotting one or two.
>
>             "It was so kind of you to write!
>               You are so very dull!"
>             The Supplicant said nothing but
>               "Why don't you zot them all?"
>             I wish they were not quite so many--
>               The server's about to stall!"
>
>             "It seems a shame," the Oracle said,
>               "To play out such a trick,
>             After we've hoped from them so much,
>               To pull out the zotting stick!"
>             The Supplicant said nothing but
>               "What if it chucked *really* quick?"
>
>             "I'd weep for you," the Oracle said.
>               "But you're wasting all my time."
>             (This line left intentionally blank
>               For lack of a proper rhyme.)
>             "Your question was unoriginal
>               "My answer should suite you fine."
>
>             "O newbies," said the Oracle.
>               "You've had such pleasant fun!
>             "Now get back to your nintendo games
>               "And leave my queues alone."
>             But this was unnecessary, for
>               They'd zotted every one.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} "You are old, Oracle," the young supplicant said,
}    "And your queue has become very long;
} And yet you incessently bounce on the bed--
}    Don't you think your delay is quite wrong?"
}
} "In my youth," the Oracle replied to young Bill,
}    "I feared it would never be drained;
} But now that I'm perfectly sure it that it will,
}    I ignore it again and again."
}
} "You are old," said the youth, "as I mentioned before,
}    And have grown most uncommonly fat;
} Yet you answer your mail in a minute, no more--
}    Pray how can you mange all that?"
}
} "In my youth," said the Oracle, tapping his keys,
}    "I kept all my fingers quite supple
} By the use of this service--the answers are free--
}    Allow me to send you a couple?"
}
} "You are old," said the youth, "and your wits are too weak
}    For questions much tougher than 'Please?';
} Yet you answer them all, with narry a squeak--
}    Pray how do you do it with ease?
}
} "In my youth," said the Oracle, "I'd a girlfriend,
}    And we argued all night and all day;
} And the tricks that I learned to bring fights to an end
}    Have helped me through every afray."
}
} "You are old," said the youth, "one would hardly suppose
}    That your tongue was as steady as wood;
} Yet you handled the woodchuck, which everyone knows,
}    Can chuck as much wood as it could.
}
} "I've answered three questions, and that is enough!"
}    The Oracle cried, "stop this rot!
} Do you think I can listen all day to such stuff?
}    Be gone, or I'll give you a ZOT!"


1133-08    (j8hdc dist, 2.9 mean)
Selected-By: "Paul L. Kelly" <zymurge@mindspring.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Dearest Oracle,
>
> Who invented sliced bread?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Al Gore.


1133-09    (afog4 dist, 2.8 mean)
Selected-By: Otis Viles <cierhart@ic.net>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Ippity bipitty bop.
>
> Ouhh ouhh screech,
>
> ahh ahh spthhhhhpppp!

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Not so fast, not so fast.  I'm not fluent in Imbecile.  Uh... let's
} see... ee ee gakka *drool* wippity-wip, mok!
}
} ZADOC!  Get in here!
}
} [enter Zadoc, grovelling as per spec]
}
} Awright, sonny, there's a customer here who speaks only Imbecile.
} Think you can help?
}
} "Uh, I'll try, Your Almighty Worshipful Prince of All Things Suave..."
}
} See that you do.  I've got a lunch date with Lisa.
}
} "Uh... hi... is this thing on?"
}
} > > Ippity bipitty bop.
} > >
} > > Ouhh ouhh screech,
} > >
} > > ahh ahh spthhhhhpppp!
}
} "MOM!  I told you never to call me here!"
}
} > > Gronk yatta yatta fwit wee wee!
}
} "Yes, I know, but how would you feel if your loving son were to LOSE
} HIS JOB?"
}
} > > Fwatta wat bippi iggledypiggledy.
}
} "No, it's not like that any more.  Townships don't just hire a village
} idiot for life any longer.  You have to stay at the top of your
} profession just to make a living, Ma."
}
} > > glort?
}
} "Don't worry, Ma, I can still drool with the best of 'em.  I gotta go.
} Glipglip!"
}
} > > glipglip!
}
} You owe the O... oh, wait, never mind.


1133-10    (5kne7 dist, 3.0 mean)
Selected-By: Ian Davis

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Please tell me if my marriage is going to last forever?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} It will seem that way, but all up the service, the kiss from hairy
} Auntie Jackie on the church steps, the fight between your sister and
} cousin Vivienne over who caught the bouquet, the traffic jam on the
} way to the reception, the poor food, the DJ looking at the wrong list
} and playing "Hit me With Your Best Shot" by Pat Benatar instead of
} the Waltz of the Flowers by Tchaikovsky, your father punching the
} hotel functions manager over the food fiasco, great grandma Edna
} choking on a chicken bone, the best man sleeping with one of the
} bridesmaids and thereby ending his own marriage, and dragging your
} drunk father-in-law out of the hotel room upstairs so you can finally
} get some sleep will actually take about 8 hours.
}
} You owe the Oracle the garter.


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