} Yes, they bend or shrink. Oh hell, I guess I can't get away that
} easily, can I? (Well, I _can_, I'm the Oracle, but my reputation is at
} stake here. I guess I'll have to call up my old friend, Aristotle.)
} (sound of touch tones)
} Hi, it's Del, yeah, it's been a few centuries, we really ought
} to do lunch soon, by the way, I have one of those trivia
} questions for you; remember that taxonomy you did about
} turtles, where they have spines, and I asked you what did you
} need a spine for in a turtle ...
} Oh, _Zeno_, sorry, I was calling for Art. No, I don't care
} about who won the race. I always thought that little scam was
} a bit contrived, but as you've pointed out, I should stick with
} the prophecy and leave the mathematics to the philosophers.
} Forget about lunch. Sorry, I have to ring off, I have an
} important call to make, bye ....
} (sound of hookswitch and more touch tones)
} Hello, I'd like to speak with Aristotle, please? Yes, I'll
} (drumming fingers, more drumming fingers, envelopes opening,
} pretzels munching, more drumming fingers...)
} Art, this is Del, thanks, fine, you sound busy. Oh, they found
} out about those genetic stubs that got away? I _told_ you not
} to try out that auto-installation scheme, the host organizms
} would really rather be able to choose which organ gets infected
} instead of always having to put the patches in their ...
} sorry, I know, not my job. Anyway, here's one from the net
} that I couldn't find in the FAQ. When the turtles retract
} their heads, what goes on with the spine? Sure they have a
} spine; you told me that the reptiles were vertebrates and that
} all vertebrates have spines, so the turtles must have spines,
} right? No, I'm not going to call Zeno about my logic, you know
} how I get when I talk to him. Besides, we've got a user in the
} field whose taken the cover off of one of these things. No, I
} don't know what he was trying to do inside, and I don't want
} to. He just wants to know about the retraction mechanism on
} the neck. Sure, I'll hang on.
} (scribbling on pad, drumming fingers, spilled coffee, sounds of
} minor panic, sighing)
} Took you long enough. So you were still documenting back then,
} eh? Ok, neck retraction mechanism. What do you mean, it's
} gone? The whole section? You probably didn't document it.
} Come on, I know you better than that. How do you think they
} ended up putting teats on a beast that has a beak? Don't you
} remember how hard it was to jury-rig that interface before the
} second generation came along? Took us all summer, and a good
} thing that the first batch of eggs got eaten. Listen, just
} make a guess, will you? Yeah, maybe they'll swallow that.
} Sure, I'll remind them. Say, thanks, and give me a call
} sometime about lunch, will ya? Bye.
} Okay, here's the answer. The turtle's neck retracts like a crab's eyes
} do. In fact, the crab-eye mechanism was modified and incorporated into
} the new design. Take the cover off of a crab and have a look.
} You owe the Oracle the missing section in the turtle document, with
} redlines and new graphics. (actually, a copy of the crab-eye document
} will do in a pinch :-).