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Internet Oracularities #1151

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1151, 1151-01, 1151-02, 1151-03, 1151-04, 1151-05, 1151-06, 1151-07, 1151-08, 1151-09, 1151-10


Internet Oracularities #1151    (73 votes, 3.2 mean)
Compiled-By: Steve Kinzler <kinzler@cs.indiana.edu>
Date: Thu, 24 Feb 2000 16:30:49 -0500 (EST)

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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:
   1151
   2 1 3 4 3   5 3 3 4 1

1151  73 votes dmlc5 3iuf7 7dpl7 chod7 3ghmf 68ps6 2blil 47rpa 4emmb 6fgdn
1151  3.2 mean  2.6   3.1   3.1   2.8   3.4   3.3   3.6   3.4   3.3   3.4


1151-01    (dmlc5 dist, 2.6 mean)
Selected-By: krc@erythrea.wellesley.edu

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

> Wise Oracle most parsimonious and contributive,
>
> Why does the media care if I didn't give that little gal a tip?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Because you would have been the first person living in Iowa who
} didn't think it was fun to knock ol' Bessie over and listen to her moo.
}
} Congrats.
}
} You owe the Oracle some corn.


1151-02    (3iuf7 dist, 3.1 mean)
Selected-By: Ross Clement <R.P.Clement@westminster.ac.uk>

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

> Is it true there's no such thing as a bad question?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Yup, quite true. The Oracle firmly believes that people need
} to feel free to ask what they are perplexed about. They ask
} to learn, what could be wrong with that?
}
} Let's look at your query supplicant.
}
} You have a reason to doubt that questions are intrinsically
} bad or good. This has been a pressing question about all
} questions from the start of questioning, no question about
} that.
}
} Let's look at what some of your great thinkers have said:
}
} Buddha: *All* questions strive to leave the endless cycling queue
}         of inquiry, once they do so they achieved Nod'oh, a state
}         of not needing to be asked.
}
} Jesus: Let the bad questions come unto me. For I say to you
}        the baffled shall inherit the climate adjusted spanner.
}        I bring you good questions. Like; Where is all this
}        bread coming from? More wine? No problemo. Fish? Sure,
}        I will make you fish-mongers of the Good Question.
}
} Marx: Cast off those bad questions! They are chains tying
}       you to the queues you produce. But who gets the
}       credit? Those overlords of Knowledge, the damn Pr...[0]
}
} Sartre: Bad, good? Bah, they're just questions.
}
} Camus: We're all guilty of asking bad question unless we're
}        obstinate in living as good questions.
}
} Genet: No one can ask a perfectly good question, so why live
}        a doomed existence trying? On the other hand one can
}        ask bad one question in one's sleep, or in the sleep
}        of others whether they're at home or not.
}
} Alan Greenspan: Look we need bad questions to keep the
}        good questions in line. In fact if the rate of
}        interest in bad question drops. I'm going to
}        flood the queue with these crossover questions
}        I got in reserve on my Imac.
}
} You owe the Oracle a really bad question so The Oracle can
} straighten it out with love and some big hugs. Dang it
} supplicants, I love you all! <BIG HUG>
}
} [0] Marx's theory was proven nuts by a think tank in Indiana.
}     Now a free-market in which good and bad question vie on
}     a level queuing field reigns. In fact as far as bad
}     questions go we're knee-deep in the deepest 'bunch of
}     bull' market in digested history. Ain't Life Grand?


1151-03    (7dpl7 dist, 3.1 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce M. Wilson" <awilson@uplink.net>

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

> Oh great and mighty Oracle, who knows a kernel from a colonel, please
> tell me...
>
> Bill Gates says that Windows 2000 will be "dramatically more reliable
> than previous Microsoft products." Now, I was just wondering, what new
> additions are there that make Windows 2000 such a better product?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Well, I don't know about it being a better product. Sounds like ol'
} Billy is blowing smoke again. There are, however, some surprises in
} store for Microsoft users:
}
} TOP TEN SURPRISES IN THE NEW "WINDOWS 2000"
}
} 10. Handy expiration date lets user know when operating system has
}     gone bad.
}
}  9. Peppy Randy Newman song, "I Love P.C.s," takes the edge off
}     system crashes.
}
}  8. Taskbar items now include "laundry" and "dusting."
}
}  7. If you feed them after midnight, they replicate at an exponential
}     rate.
}
}  6. Utilities now include a jellybean dispenser and a grappling hook.
}
}  5. Besides having a startup image and a shutdown image, now has a
}     shutup image.
}
}  4. 100% biodegradable.
}
}  3. Screens telephone calls by simply repeating "Hello? Hello?" over
}     and over.
}
}  2. Only operating system to be elected mayor of Down Falls, IA.
}
}  1. If you put an Altoid in the Zip Drive, you'll never have to
}     download porn off the internet ever again.
}
} You owe the Oracle a tin of Altoids.


1151-04    (chod7 dist, 2.8 mean)
Selected-By: MVSOPEN@aol.com

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

> /* question.c: Ask a question */
> #include "grovel.h"
> #include "oracle.h"
> #include "geek.h" /* Usefulness determined by runtime option -g */
>
> int main(int argc, *char argv[])
> {
>     int geek, resub;
>     *char ques, ans; /* XXX XXX XXX Of unknown size, but in TRUIX, we
>                      don't have to worry about buffer overflows.*/
>     while(argc)
>         {
>         if argv[argc] == "-g" || "--geek" {geek=1};
>         if argv[argc] == "-r" || "--resubmit" {resub=1};
>         argc--;
>         }
>     printf("Input base question. (Note that geek ");
>     printf("questions require the -g flag\n");
>     fgets(STDIN, ques);
>     addgrovel(ques);
>     repoint: /* Where we start over in resub mode. */
>     sendo(ques);
>     while (!ans)
>         {
>         sleep(DAY); /* Only wake up once a day */
>                     /**//**//**//**//**//**//**//**//**//**/
>                     /* FIXME: DAY is defined in oracle.h  */
>                     /* A new function (waitday(void)) in  */
>                     /* oracle.h may be called for, but    */
>                     /* oracle.h is already too complex    */
>                     /* as is.                             */
>                     /**//**//**//**//**//**//**//**//**//**/
>         checko(*ans);
>         }
>     printf(*ans);
>     if (resub)
>         {
>         if (unfunny(ans)) goto repoint;
>         if (geek && ungeeky(ans)) goto repoint;
>         /* XXX There are cleaner ways of doing this, yes,
>         but they involve a bigass while loop.*/
>         }
>     return 0;
> }

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} The Internet Oracle has compiled your question deeply.
}
} And in response, thus spake the Oracle:
} You are trying to get me to do your CS 101 homework.  So I
} say, fget about it!  While my internal Ori-C compiler has
} been able to use the READMIND macro to blithly ignore the
} syntax errors and failure to precondition variables, since
} before FORTRAN was ONETRAN, the systems on which you mere
} mortals rely don't offer this option.  So, you know where you
} can GOTO.  Or, to put it in a language you may someday
} understand:
}
} MOV    SUPPLICANT, R1
} AND    ZOT, R1
} END    SUPPLICANT
}
} You owe the Oracle a 500Mhz PDP-8/S.


1151-05    (3ghmf dist, 3.4 mean)
Selected-By: "Leo L. Schwab" <ewhac@best.com>

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

> I don't know if I'm alive or dead.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} So much for Descartes.


1151-06    (68ps6 dist, 3.3 mean)
Selected-By: "Michael A. Atkinson" <chaos@suespammers.org>

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

> Please help me -- FOR THE LOVE OF GOD -- HELP!!!
>
> It all started the other day.  I was watching the TV with my
> significant other, when on came a show with the seemingly innocent
> title "Martha Stewart Living".  I started to change the channel, but
> she said "Oh, let's watch just a few minutes..." in a cutesy way,
> so I put down the remote, and we watched.  After about 3 minutes,
> I fell asleep.  When I awoke some 10 minutes later, her eyes were
> glazed over.  She was making a list of things to buy like hot glue
> guns, ceramic glaze, cinnamon sticks, and something called "Chinze".
>
> Over the next few days, she has transformed our one bedroom apartment
> into something resembling a country house in Connecticut.  There is
> handmade stuff on every flat surface, and if I go near a hand towel,
> she snaps at me.
>
> What's more, the place is now littered with Martha Stewart magazines,
> Martha Stewart cookbooks, and Martha Stewart videos.
>
> The clincher came last night.  I overheard her calling the "Martha
> Stewart Hotline" (3.95/minute).  In the course of the conversation,
> I distinctly heard her use the word "assimilate".  Now she wants me
> to help her make a pinecone wreath AND IT IS FEBRUARY.
>
> What can I do?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Oh, this is easy.  Even you, a mere supplicant, should have thought of
} the answer.
}
} Yes, you'll help her make a pine cone wreath.  And lots of other
} projects, too.  But to do that, you'll need TOOLS!  You should start
} with the small, portable gizmo that's a combination lathe, milling
} machine and drill press.  It takes hardly any space, and can be put
} under the TV table when you're not using it, so she can hardly object.
} You'll also need a bench grinder and a vise, and a bench to put them
} on.  Think small, because you're in an apartment.
}
} When you bring home an oxy-acetylene torch, she'll start thinking how
} there used to be more room in the apartment, and the two of you will go
} house hunting.  Don't get anything less than six acres.  Ten or fifty
} would be better.  She'll fall in love with the idea of reconstructing
} an old house, but you could build a new one instead if you would
} rather. Either route is a Real Trip.  Martha will, of course, be there
} guiding her in every step, so it's a good idea for you to have your own
} plans for your part of your Wonderful Life Together.  Plan on putting
} in the World's Best Workshop.  A two-car garage with an attic might be
} a good choice here, or perhaps one of those quonset-hut type steel
} buildings.
}
} Get a good John Deere tractor, between 28 and 45 horsepower, with a
} bucket on the front, and get a strong full-sized 3/4 ton pickup truck,
} preferably with a diesel engine.  You'll wonder how you ever got along
} without these marvelous tools.
}
} When the house is being built or remodeled, have LAN cable installed
} along with the other wiring so you can have all your computers talking
} to each other.
}
} As you go on, you'll need to put in stables for the horses, and
} probably a riding arena, either open or enclosed, depending upon where
} your property is located.  You may think of putting in a pond, if there
} wasn't one on the property, but don't try to do it with your tractor!
} Hire a man with a bulldozer.
}
} There's lots of other stuff you can find to do that'll keep you in
} control of at least part of your life.  What I've sketched here is only
} a start.
}
} You owe the Oracle, incarnated via Peter Neilson (neilson@pagesz.net)
} in North Carolina, some kids and lambs from your farm.  No CAE, no CL.


1151-07    (2blil dist, 3.6 mean)
Selected-By: Ian Davis

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

> 5000' feet of dungeon, and not a single interesting monster. *sigh*

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} 5000' feet? As in 5000-feet feet? You just walked through a dungeon
} made of 5000 foot-tall feet and you say there's nothing interesting?
}
} Geez. Role players today. They expect everything to be like the movies.
}
} What ever happened to "Keep on the Border" and the "Tower of
} Inverness?"
}
} In my day, we had ogres and dragons and rust monsters, and that was it,
} and we liked it! If our cleric got ate by a bog beast, we didn't
} resurrect him. No! We just searched his dead body for gold and threw it
} in the river and that's how we liked it! And we didn't have these
} fancy-shmansy swords of plus this and bonus against that. If you had an
} arquebus you were powerful! Sure they blew up in your face nine times
} out of ten, but the noise scared the critters, and that's how we liked
} it! And this "planes" nonsense. We were all limited to one plane and we
} were too stupid to realize there were more, but that's how we liked it!
} And none of us ever made demi-god! We were lucky if our character
} sheets lasted three gaming sessions before getting destroyed by
} someone's spilled 7-up! We didn't keep anything on computers! No! We
} wrote everything down on paper and played with *real dice* and that's
} how we liked it! We were lucky if our computers ran "Hunt the Wumpus"
} without crashing!
}
} And if we all died, which we frequently did because our Dungeon Master
} ... that's right! I said Dungeon Master! We didn't have these fruity
} foo-foo "Game Masters" in my day! That's how we liked it!
}
} If we all died because our Dungeon Master got bored and threw Tiamat at
} us ... well then ... we would just make up new characters and we'd all
} accidentally meet at the Inn. We didn't have no complex plots and these
} sissy "story lines!" And that's how we liked it! Hack and slash!
}
} You owe the Oracle Gary Gygax's home phone number.


1151-08    (47rpa dist, 3.4 mean)
Selected-By: "Forbes, Michael Scott (Scott)" <trans@lucent.com>

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

> Okay. So I'm dead. So what happens next?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} My favorite part.
}
} <cue flickering lights as a screen comes down and the projector begins>
}
} Here we see young supplicant at the tender age of 2 months. You see
} there that your mother is bottle feeding you, perhaps causes for
} later mental peculiarities? Hmm, a debate better left to the mortals.
}
} Ah, here's an interesting part. Potty training. Can everyone in the
} back see this? Yes, that's right, the supplicant is confused about
} using the potty. Should the supplicant stand? Should the supplicant
} sit? No, I'm afraid this one doesn't get answered, it confuses the
} supplicant for the remainder of life. Yes, the supplicant uses the
} correct lavatory, but thankfully there are doors on the stalls and
} nobody learned this secret ... until now! ha ha!
}
} Ok, here's the first day of school. Notice the small wet spot on the
} rear of the supplicant's pants. Yes, nerves.
}
} Ah, here's a good one! We're now in the first year of secondary school.
} The first kiss! Yes! Behind the school, nobody looking, here it comes,
} wait, wait, and ... yes! A bucket of dirty water dumped by the janitor
} out the window! Right on their heads!
}
} Here's the supplicant in college. Yes. All alone. If you listen,
} you can hear a party across the hall. But alas, our supplicant was
} too homely to be invited. Oh, the supplicant put on a good face,
} but here you can see plainly ... bawling like a baby. The supplicant
} thought nobody would ever find out about that too! Ha ha!
}
} Oh! First sexual exper... and that's over.
}
} And here's the supplicant looking at naughty web pages, thinking
} nobody was looking ... we were!
}
} And we have nose picking ... butt scratching ... ahem ... well ... Oh!
} Here's the death scene. No, wait, watching, keep watching, keep
} watching, and ... ow! Bet that hurt! Never saw that moped coming.
} Little old ladies can be so dangerous, can't they? Well, that's the
} end of the film, folks.  Hope you enjoyed it. Up next we have a male
} australian who died while fishing off ...
}
} What's that supplicant?
}
} Heaven?
}
} No, I'm afraid not. What? Where do you go now? Well, you're still under
} at 12 picture contract with our studio, and you've only done three,
} so it's reincarnation for you! This time you're going back as a young
} man in Des Moines and... oh, only 23 years. I'm afraid there's some
} glue huffing and an unfortunate paper bag accident involved, but,
} we'll don't want to ruin the end of the next picture, do we?
}
} Have fun!
}
} You owe the Oracle a blockbuster!


1151-09    (4emmb dist, 3.3 mean)
Selected-By: Ian Davis

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

> I don't know if I'm alive or dead.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Well, you haven't lost your Internet access, that's a start.
} Let me ask you a few questions: do you find yourself craving brains?
} Do you ever forget to breathe for several hours at a time? Does your
} bed have four walls and a lid? Do you find Regis Philbin hilarious?
} Are your conversational skills hampered by the fact that all you can
} say is "RAGH! BRAINS! RARAGHRAGH!"? When you visit your parents, do
} they lock the door and start franticly searching for a monkey's paw?
} Have you ever tried to use your death certificate as a piece of primary
} identification? Are you (male or female) sexually attracted to Cher?
} Do you suspect your fishing buddies invite you along only because
} you're a source of cheap bait? Do you keep a deluxe sewing kit with
} you at all times in case you start shedding limbs? Do you use "OFF"
} as under-arm deodourant?
}
} If you answered "Yes" to any of the above questions,... you're dead.
} Or at least undead, which is the way I can think of for a corpse to
} be emailing me.
}
} You owe the Oracle some Spam in a cabin.


1151-10    (6fgdn dist, 3.4 mean)
Selected-By: "Michael A. Atkinson" <chaos@suespammers.org>

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

> My grovel's lies are nothing like the Sun's;
> Al Gore is far more fun than its words' whine;
> If words be food, why then I get the runs;
> If verse be dead, I be its Frankenstein.
> I have seen queries witty, read and writ,
> But no such wit is here, except for half;
> And in some madhouse is there some poor git
> Who might reward its verses with one laugh.
> I hate to hear it too, and well I know,
> That flatus sounds more gratifying somehow;
> I grant that they both stink, but apropos
> My question, when it's asked, and it's asked now,
> Is how much wood could woodchucks chuck for sure,
> If woodchucks could chuck wood, my kindest Sir?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} A bunch of us priests were whooping it up in the Oracular shrine;
} The Boss was replying to questions in rhyme, and the rhyming was going
}    fine;
} Right by his side stood sweet Lisa his bride, the Oracle's lady luck,
} When through the door strode a figure bold, the supplicant known as
}    Chuck.
}
} There's men that somehow just grip your ears, and hold them hard like a
}    spell;
} And such was he, and what is more, he recited his poetry well;
} With cute rhymes like "whine" and "Frankenstein" he kept us in his
}    thrall,
} And then he threw in an "apropos" as if 'twere no effort at all.
} Transfixed, we sat as we wondered what question from the air he'd pluck
} That could match the matchless versifying of the supplicant known as
}    Chuck.
}
} His eyes went rubbering round the room, and he seemed in a kind of
}    daze,
} As if his muse were drying up under Orrie's unfaltering gaze.
} Two guys at the bar - Paul and Ian, I think - made a joke and returned
}    to their beers,
} While the strangers stood like he'd taken root, a prey to nameless
}    fears.
} He mopped his brow, he set his jaw, his tongue it came unstuck;
} Then he asked how much wood would woodchucks chuck, if woodchucks wood
}    could chuck.
}
} The room fell into a deathly hush as we priests all held our breath;
} And the lengthening silence seemed to fill with grim portents of death.
} How we wished that we could flee, could flee, from our master's wrath
}    far gone;
} But the Oracle stood still, stood still, as though he were made of
}    stone.
} And the stranger turned, and his eyes they burned with a fire like the
}    noonday sun;
} With his coat unbuttoned and open wide he waited; and we saw his gun.
}
} Then Orrie's lips twisted in a grin, and he spoke, and his voice was
}    calm;
} And, "Boys," said he, "you all know me, I'm as gentle as a lamb;
} But I want to state - and please get this straight - those who dare to
}    say woodchuck
} Will get but one answer from the Oracle ... and that's FYYFF!"
}
} We hit the floor, and the lights went out, and a gun blazed in the
}   dark;
} Then a woman screamed, and two seconds passed 'fore we saw the telltale
}    spark.
} The Zot flashed out like a lightning bolt, and we had no doubt where it
}    struck:
} The exact same spot that was occupied by the supplicant known as Chuck.
}
} These are the simple facts of the case, and I guess I ought to know;
} They say that the stranger was a hate-crazed troll, and I'm not denying
}    it's so.
} But I'm warning you, you'll end up too - were you to chance your luck -
} As a heap of ash, which was all that's left of the supplicant known as
}    Chuck.


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