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Internet Oracularities #535

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535, 535-01, 535-02, 535-03, 535-04, 535-05, 535-06, 535-07, 535-08, 535-09, 535-10


Usenet Oracularities #535    (60 votes, 3.1 mean)
Compiled-By: "Steve Kinzler" <kinzler@cs.indiana.edu>
Date: Fri, 19 Feb 1993 00:10:44 -0500

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send mail to oracle@cs.indiana.edu with the word "help" in the subject
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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:
   535
   2 1 3 4 3   5 3 3 4 1

535   60 votes 2cu97 2bjl7 3frc3 29mi9 4jie5 3gme5 bjhb2 cjk54 49boc 37fnc
535   3.1 mean  3.1   3.3   3.0   3.4   3.0   3.0   2.6   2.5   3.5   3.6


535-01    (2cu97 dist, 3.1 mean)
Selected-By: mzintl@Plasma.ps.uci.edu

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

>       Is there any way to find out information about the location
> of a site.  Given the address, I want to find out specifically how
> to know which university runs the system.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Sure, it is very easy.
}
} 1. First "finger" the site in question to get a list of all users
}    currently logged in ("finger" is a particularly good command to
}    release frustration too: in my younger days as a student, I would
}    often "finger" my teacher while his back was turned... very
}    satisfying, but I disgress).
}
} 2. Repeat step #1 several times over a period of 1 week to get a
}    close approximation to the complete list of userids on that site.
}
} 3. Send an email message to all the users at that site (do not
}    forget to add 'root', 'postmaster', 'god' and 'BIFF') containing
}    a suitably inflamatory message. Offering anti jewish lesbian black
}    women litterature for sale should do it. Be sure to include your
}    telephone number in a visible location of the message.
}
} 4. Now wait. They'll call you. You can then (nicely) ask for the name
}    of the university running their system, they should be glad to help
}    you.
}
} You owe the Oracle a pair of arc-welding goggles, I want to enjoy
} the show.


535-02    (2bjl7 dist, 3.3 mean)
Selected-By: mzintl@Plasma.ps.uci.edu

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

> Oh Oracle Most Wise and Omniscient,
>
> Why is it that when Dan Quayle can't figure out how to spell potato(e),
> the national media jump all over him, but when Al Gore doesn't
> recognize pictures of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson,
> nobody says anything?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Give the guy a break.  He's a politician.  He hasn't seen a bill
} smaller than a fifty for several years.
}
} You owe the Oracle a pair of printing plates from the Pennsylvania
} mint.


535-03    (3frc3 dist, 3.0 mean)
Selected-By: buck@sunyit.edu (Jesse Buckley)

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

> Oh Oracle most wise,
> whose wit can reach the skies,
> whose knowledge knows no bounds,
> whose voice makes such sweet sounds.
>
> Recently, when digging in my back garden I came across a very old
> stone. It had inscriptions on it in the cuneiform Babylonian alphabet.
> I took it to the local museum, and they claim that it is at least
> 3500 years old.
>
> But they have a problem: They could decipher the letters, but not
> translate the words, which seem to be in some kind of East Babolynian
> dialect. So I though of you, all-knowing Oracle! Surely you can
> translate this for us:
>
>       Maxi waff nu max ruff. Proqoth myn UNIX la. Prowisk ussur
>       na Bill Gates hu Windows. Na xymmoshinq luffr. Marish tur
>       yumqua lu CTRL/C CTRL/C CTRL/C, an ny ha!! Ruffir! Mar nuxi
>       palash :q!

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Indeed, the runes are part of an ancient language and I will
} try to translate it for you.
}
} "Long time ago, the Great God create a very powerful operating system,
}  called Unix. User all over the world used this new thing and were
}  happy. Suddenly the evil Babylonian Bill Gates arrived from a puff
}  of smoke and spreaded his Windows Versions in the land. After that
}  the wise and old mages of Palash were trying to find a way to remove
}  the ugly Windows System from the Users' computers. One way to do this
}  was the typing of CTRL-C three times and, uh oh, it worked !
}  All users were happy and enjoyed their life again..."


535-04    (29mi9 dist, 3.4 mean)
Selected-By: jgm@cs.brown.edu (Jonathan Monsarrat)

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

> Mighty Oracle, whose nostril hairs are all impeccably parallell, please
> tell me:
>
> Where does /usr/spool/news go to when rn tells me
> "Can't chdir to directory /usr/spool/news"?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Thank you for the complement, I use an "ORICOMB", the electric parallel
} nose hair comb, I tried one 5 years ago, and I liked it so much I
} bought the company (Well, when I say 'bought', I actually <ZOT>'ed the
} chairman and took over).  Available *now* for only $49.95 + 5.95 P&P
} from "The Great Usenet Oracle (Electrical Appliances Division)".
} Batteries not included.  Please allow 28 eons for delivery.
}
} Now, to your question.  It is obvious that you know nothing about
} modern hard disk technology.
}
} Your system administrator has taken the disk off line, in order to
} remove all the old news from the system.  This takes several hours, as
} he has to take the disk out of the cabinet, pour the old news down the
} drain and wash the remnents off of it with warm soapy water.  Some of
} the smutty pictures in alt.binaries.pictures.filth, need scrubbing with
} a scourer to remove them.  He will also need to remove the scorch marks
} left by flame wars with methylated spirit.
}
} He will then take the disk to the Usenet feed pipe, turn on the tap,
} and carefully fill the disk with new news, put the disk back in the
} cabinet and put it on line.  (When you occasionally see the message
} "Skipping unavailable article", the is where the admin spilt a couple
} of articles, these are probably lying around on the machine room floor
} if you want to look for them.)
}
} You owe the Oracle two pints of articles from
} alt.binaries.pictures.filth, (I, erm, like to admire the quality of the
} photography and digitisation.)


535-05    (4jie5 dist, 3.0 mean)
Selected-By: Joshua.R.Poulson@cyber.Widener.EDU

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

> Hee hee hee... OK, we're back. Coming up in this half hour, Keifer
> Sutherland is here... and of course, Stupid Pet Tricks. Now -- do we
> have time for this?
>
> Huh? Do we -- Oh, OK.
>
> Ladies and gentlemen, call the kids and wake the neighbors because
> we're going to ask the Usenet Oracle a question. Can we have some
> Usenet Oracle music, Paul? Thanks... That's our Usenet Oracle theme,
> written by Henry Mancini of course. Hee hee hee... Thanks, Paul.
>
> All right... hah? Do we have time -- Two minutes? All right.
>
> Oh Almighty Omniscient Oracle, from the home office in Olympus,
> Valhalla, I beseech thee -- hee hee, I don't know what that means, I
> just like saying the word "beseech." Ha ha! -- I beseech thee to answer
> this burning question.
>
> I'm already jumping to CBS. But should I keep the show in New York, or
> move it to Los Angeles?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Hi, it's great to be on your show, I don't get on the TV as much as I
} should, Can I say hello to Lisa ? Hi Lisa!, Hello mom!
}
} I'll be back to answer your question, right after this break, don't
} touch that dial!
}
} ====
} Do you have trouble with noisy neighbours ?, well at <ZOT>'s 'R' US, we
} have the solution, call us now toll free on 1-800 Z-O-T T-H-E-M, and
} we'll quote you a rate for any job, from just a single pensioner, to a
} small nation, call us *now* on 1-800 Z-O-T T-H-E-M, and we'll sort them
} out!
}
} Another service from The Great Oracle Services Ltd.
} ====
}
} Welcome back!, yes I can answer your question, but first I'd like to
} talk about a problem, that we all have, I noticed how dull and old
} looking your car is, yet it's only 2 years old, you need "Orrie" the
} miracle car restorer, to re-create that just-left-the-factory look!, a
} snip at only $50, available from The Great Oracle Products Ltd.
}
} Why is your floor manager making those signs, that drawing the finger
} across his throat doesn't look nice, surely you arn't trying to cut off
} the great Oracle, just for trying to make a few honest dollars ?
}
} OK, OK, I'll answer the question, What you should do is ...
}
} It looks like we're out of time, if you want you're question answered,
} you'll have to invite me back next week!
}
} Have a nice day.
}
} You owe the Oracle a regular spot on your show.


535-06    (3gme5 dist, 3.0 mean)
Selected-By: David Sewell <dsew@troi.cc.rochester.edu>

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

> > The Usenet Oracle has pondered your question deeply.
>
> My question, iridescent Oracle, is this:  Why do you bother to ponder
> deeply questions from *other* supplicants, hmmm?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} "Iridescent" -- nice word. I like that word. Not often you get to use
} the word "iridescent" in conversation. "The rum daiquiri was
} iridescent." "My, Lisa, you look particularily iridescent today." "He
} fell through the haunted house and had an iridescent."
}
} Having inflicted that pun upon you, I shall now be kind and answer your
} question.
}
} Most supplicants' questions, I don't even bother to ponder. I feed them
} into the Oraclematic 2000 (thank goodness for modern technology!) which
} randomly assembles stolen Hitchhiker's quotes, fragments of UNIX
} scripts and Lisa jokes into the answer and sends it back in no time
} flat. This is why there aren't so many Oracularities.
}
} However, if the Oraclematic were to send back an answer pretending to
} be the *real* omniscient Usenet Oracle, boy would we be in trouble! The
} federal government would be on my back in a nanosecond for violating
} product labeling laws and even if you're omnipotent it's no mean feat
} dealing with the FTC. So replies from the Oraclematic come out under
} the legally required header:
}
} > The Usenet Oracle, having better things to do, fed your question to
} > the Oraclematic 2000. Here is its answer. Please be forewarned that
} > the Oraclematic 2000 is neither omniscient nor omnipotent and all
} > answers have a margin of error of 86.4%.
}
} Most supplicants just get answers under this header. In fact, I have to
} admit (heh heh) that it's just so EASY to feed questions into the
} Oraclematic rather than wasting time answering them myself (time that
} could be better spent watching the new Space Cruiser Yamato TV series
} or other activities) that, quite frankly, I now send all supplicants'
} questions into the machine, and live a life of ease and luxury as the
} machine does all the work.
}
} Well, this isn't quite true. I do personally answer all questions
} submitted by ONE particular supplicant.
}
} And that supplicant is YOU. Yes, YOU, the one reading this answer right
} now. You and you alone get personalized quality service from the Usenet
} Oracle, easily identified by the Pondering Deeply (tm) header. I spend
} nearly ten minutes on some of those questions, so you bet you're
} getting quality!
}
} You owe the Oracle a wave-motion gun, a nominee for Attorney General
} and a pair of introspectacles.


535-07    (bjhb2 dist, 2.6 mean)
Selected-By: David Sewell <dsew@troi.cc.rochester.edu>

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

>  one side of the river to the other when you can only take one at a
> time, remeber the chicken will eat the feed, and the fox will eat the
> chicken if the are left

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} The way I heard it was like this:
}
} You're walking along with a sheep, a cabbage, and a wolf, and you
} come to a stream with a small boat tied up on your side of the
} bank, and you've got to cross the stream.  The boat, of course,
} only has room for two passengers, and you've got some work on your
} hands to figure out how to get across.  You can't take the cabbage
} across and leave the sheep and the wolf behind, because the wolf
} would eat the sheep.  You can't take the wolf across and leave the
} sheep and the cabbage behind, because the sheep would eat the
} cabbage.  I don't remember for sure how it went after that.  I
} think there was something about not taking the sheep across and
} leaving the cabbage and the wolf behind because the cabbage and
} the wolf would plot against you while your back was turned.
}
} You owe the Oracle a copy of Machiavelli's "The Prince."


535-08    (cjk54 dist, 2.5 mean)
Selected-By: Joshua.R.Poulson@cyber.Widener.EDU

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

> tell me why some guys are dorky and stupid with no common sense?
> tell me why do birds fall in love?
> tell me why teachers have assign papers?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Set Theory 101 - Assignment
}
} Q1 : Why are some guys dorky and stupid with no common sense?
}
}  Given P, the set of all people, there exists a  non-empty subset P
}                                                                    m
}  of P, such that P ={p:p=male}      [*]
}                   m
}  There also exists a mapping T:C->D, where C , D are subsets of P
}
}  with C ^ D  != {} ,    C={c:(c in P) and (c != commonsensical)},
}
}      and D={d:(d in P) and (d = dork)}
}
}  Prove that (C ^ D ^ P ) is a finite subset of P by application of R,
}                       m
}  and go on to show that dom(R') = {} where R':(PxP)->P
}
}  with R' is the mapping ((mother)x(father))->(child) where
}
}  father is in (C ^ D ^ P ), and mother is in P .
}                         m                     f
}
} [*] It is trivial to show that P  v  P  = P, and P  ^  P = {},
}                                 m     f           m     f
}  by applying the function R:(PxP)->P inductively to
}
}  P, where R is the mapping ((mother)x(father))->(child), and
}
}  mother is in P , father is in P .
}                f                m
}
} Q2 : Why do birds fall in love?
}
}  Given the set B of all avian life, prove that L is not a null function
}
}  where L:B->B, by reference to your answer to Q1.
}
} You owe the Oracle _and_ your teacher the solutions to this assignment.


535-09    (49boc dist, 3.5 mean)
Selected-By: Carole Susan Fungaroli <csf7m@faraday.clas.virginia.edu>

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

> Oh Oracle most wise...
>
> please tell me how to rid my cat of fleas.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} There are several tried and true methods of de-fleaing one's domestic
} feline. You may wish to review the procedures involved and choose the
} one that's right for you.
}
} 1) Flea Shampoo
}       Nothing very surprising about this.  A shampoo-chemical mix which
}       treats your cat to a bubbly bath while at the same time giving
}       his or her fur a coating of a chemical toxic to fleas.  The wash
}       in itself should remove all fleas.  If it doesn't, the chemical
}       coating will take care of the rest.
}       Cost: $19.99 - $49.99 per bottle
}
} 2) Duct Tape
}       For very low cost, you can remove those fleas with relative ease.
}       Merely take a stretch of tape approximately the length of your
}       cat and attach it lengthwise over the cat's body.  Ensure the
}       tape is secure and bonded well.  With a firm grip of the cat's
}       tail in one hand and the tape in the other, seperate the two in
}       one fluid motion.  All fleas, including those attached to the
}       furr, and the fur itself will be removed cleanly from the cat's
}       body.
}       Cost: $2.99 per roll
}
} 2) Vaccuum
}       A different approach to be sure.  Using your standard hand held
}       Dustbuster (or similar model), thoroughly run the device over
}       your cat's fur making sure to cover all areas of the body.  If
}       fleas persist, you can step up to a common shop-vac or, if still
}       not clean, an upright Hoover with a rotating bristle-head and
}       carpet lamp should do the trick.  Note that the carpet lamp
}       effectively blinds the cat, making him or her an easy target for
}       the Hoover. Cost: Free (if you don't own any item above, costs
}       can be found in your local Sears catalogue)
}
} 4) Sand Blasting
}       A more radical method which involves staking your cat to the wall
}       of a limestone facade, such as a government building or bank.
}       When cleaning crews arrive, they will blast all traces of fleas
}       from the skin of your cat.  Of course, the skin of your cat will
}       also more than likely be gone as well.  Be advised that a pail is
}       recommended for taking your cat home in.
}       Cost: Free (pockets can be used in place of the pail)
}
} 5) Sulpher Bath
}       Fairly self-explanitory.  Be sure to use earmuffs as the wails of
}       your cat may grow to fairly intense ranges.  Heavy work clothes
}       and leather gloves are also recommended.
}       Cost: (the price of the chemicals and burial fees)
}
} You owe the Oracle some catnip.


535-10    (37fnc dist, 3.6 mean)
Selected-By: nolan@helios.unl.edu (Harold the Foot)

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

> Oh mighty Oracle, whos ignorance knows no bounds,
>
> Who is Lisa?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Yes.
}
} [The supplicant does a double take.]
}
} S: Who is?
} O: Absolutely.  That's her last name.
} S: What's her last name?
} O: No, what's her middle name.
} S: I don't know!
} O: Ida know is her mother.
} S: I'm not _talking_ about her mother!
} O: Well you mentioned her name.
} S: Whose name?
} O: No, who is Lisa.
} S: Hey, I'm asking YOU the questions here!
}    Look, let's make this simple.  You know Lisa, right?
} O: Yes.
} S: You kiss Lisa, right?
} O: Of course!
} S: Good, then when you're kissing Lisa, you're kissing _whose_ lips?
} O: Absolutely!  And her neck, and...
} S: WHOSE neck!?!?
} O: Yes.  Are you ok?
} S: FINE!!!  I'm feeling fine!
} O: Good for you!  Lisa's sister has been needing some cuddling lately.
} S: Urk...
}
} [At which point the supplicant passes out.]
}
} You owe the Oracle a trip to first base.


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