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Internet Oracularities #848

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848, 848-01, 848-02, 848-03, 848-04, 848-05, 848-06, 848-07, 848-08, 848-09, 848-10


Internet Oracularities #848    (93 votes, 3.3 mean)
Compiled-By: "Steve Kinzler" <kinzler@cs.indiana.edu>
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 00:10:49 -0500 (EST)

To find out all about the Internet Oracle, including how to participate,
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:
   848
   2 1 3 4 3   5 3 3 4 1

848   93 votes alpod 3fGmb 5fvrf 4oDm4 3mxu5 7dpxf 4bDof 2etye 6bnun 4espm
848   3.3 mean  3.1   3.2   3.3   3.0   3.1   3.4   3.4   3.5   3.6   3.5


848-01    (alpod dist, 3.1 mean)
Selected-By: Mark McCafferty <markm@mincom.com>

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

> Oh great oracle, who riseth above us all like a great big pretty
> thing admiring the sunset:
>
> How many ways _are_ there to skin a cat?
>
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Benji

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} How do I skin thee? Let me count the ways.
} I skin thee to the depth and breadth and height
} My tool can reach, when feeling out of sight
} For the ends of bone and feline veins.
} I skin thee to the level of every day's
} Most quiet need, by sand and litter-bin.
} I skin thee freely, as cats strive for yarn;
} I skin thee purely, as they turn from praise.
} I skin thee with the catnip put to use
} In toy mice, and with my cat's food dish.
} I skin thee with a love I seemed to lose
} With my lost pets,--I skin thee with the
} Bites, scratches, tears, of all my life!
} And, if thou choose, I shall but skin thee
}    better after death.
}
} You owe the Oracle a saucer of milk.


848-02    (3fGmb dist, 3.2 mean)
Selected-By: Michael Nolan <nolan@tssi.com>

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

> Oh Oracle most wise,
> do questions submitted from the World Wide Web have priority
> over e-mailed questions, or vice-versa?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Dear supplicant,
} Your questions seems so simple, but, in fact, is most complex.
}
} Lets break it down into it's component parts:
}
}         World Wide Web                         Electronic Mail
}         **************                         ===============
}
}     All point and click                    User needs to have at least
}                                                 half a clue
}
}     Can get to "Cool" places               Usually doesn't type random
}         without actually knowing                to see if someone gets
}         where "here" is.                        their mail.
}
}     Doesn't need to Understand             Usually knows all too well
}         what is going on.                       what is going on.
}
}     Usually uses one of the                Usually makes their own
}         "name brand" internet                   connection.
}         providers.
}
}     Believes everything has it's Icon      Makes money from and laughs
}                                                 at those people who
}                                                 think everything should
}                                                 have it's own icon.
}
}     Thinks the Internet Oracle             Still worships the Usenet
}         Oracle is a "neat, new idea"
}
} Well, Supplicant, if that doesn't answer your question, then you didn't
} know the correct question.
}
} You owe the oracle that first guy who said,
} "I wish we at Duke could contact those folks at UNC. Kinda like some
} group thing where we could all USE the NETwork to send NEWS to GROUPS
} of folks"


848-03    (5fvrf dist, 3.3 mean)
Selected-By: David R Sewell <dsewell@GAS.UUG.Arizona.EDU>

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

> Where and how can I get some files which descibe the economists
> resources in Internet or finance or banking resources in Internet.
> Thanks.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Thank you for your question, please sit down and make yourself
} uncomfortable. I am only here to help you, please remember that. Now,
} before I answer your question, perhaps you could clear up a few points
} that have arisen.
}
} What information are you willing to give to me in order for me to have
} confidence in your ability to handle this large amount of data? It is
} our policy for potential customers of CitiOracle to deposit at least as
} much information as you are requesting from us. Deposited information
} must be new and original, no copies or rehashes are allowed, that would
} be boring and, let's face it, what we're after has to contain a lot of
} interest.
}
} To cover ourselves we must be sure that you are able to meet our need
} for information. It may seem to you that you can manage the regular
} questions, but what if you start to fall behind in your answers?
} Without careful planning you end up deeply in confusion and this may
} even lead you to filing for perplexity to protect yourself from your
} interrogators.
}
} Please answer the following and supply the names and addresses of three
} librarians as references:
}
} 1) How much information do you require?
} 2) How long do you want it for?
} 3) What will it be used for?
} 4) Over what period will you supply us with information in return?
} 5) Are you married? if no, go to question 6.
} 6) Why not?
} 7) Will you die during the length of this agreement?
} 8) Is your soul currently assigned to any supernatural beings? If yes,
}    goto question 11.
} 9) Have you been assigned to eternal damnation by any deities that you
}    consider to have dominion over you?
} 10) Do you think Barney the dinosaur is cool, or have any other mental
}     instabilities?
} 11) What is the gross asset value of your internal organs if sold as
}     seperate parts? (Remember to apply depreciation costs due to
}     substance abuse. Use the enclosed ReDiOrganiser(tm) tables if
}     stupid).
} 12) Are you frightened yet? If no, congratulations, we look forward to
}     dealing with you on a regular basis!
}
} You owe CitiOracle EVERYTHING, and it was due YESTERDAY!!


848-04    (4oDm4 dist, 3.0 mean)
Selected-By: David R Sewell <dsewell@GAS.UUG.Arizona.EDU>

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

> Master of puppets and all things great!!!!
>
> What is a Woodchuck??
>
> References thus far found for me are :-
>
> Walt Disneys Ducktales - it was a camping group.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Actually, a woodchuck is an obscure drill bit that is geometrically
} shaped (i.e. either a star, a pentagon, a square, or a dodecagon) to
} cut beautiful shapes and patterns in wood.
}
} Unfortunately, the inventor of the "woodchuck", a certain Mr. Chuck
} DuBois, didn't realize that a drill bit spins when it's used.  He owned
} a power drill, but his home in the woods didn't have an electrical
} outlet. As a result, the brilliant inventor would put the woodchuck on
} the drill and pound it into the wood with a big rock.
}
} As a result, the woodchuck fell into obscurity, and some biologist
} (maybe Darwin) thought it would make a cool name for a furry woodland
} animal. Actually, it isn't a cool name, but what do I know--I'm just
} the Oracle.
}
} You owe the Oracle a brand-new Black and Decker cordless drill with the
} woodchuck attachment.


848-05    (3mxu5 dist, 3.1 mean)
Selected-By: David R Sewell <dsewell@GAS.UUG.Arizona.EDU>

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

> Oh Oracle most wise,
> sorry, but I have groveled so much, my walkways are empty
> now (or was that gr..?).
>
> The MicroSoftSerfs, in their infinite wisdom, are considering
> "Explorer" (of "let's scramble Netscape" fame) as a front
> end to Win95.
>
> Since BOB was their last greaaaaaat attempt, I'm really
> concerned that they're missing good opportunities to puree
> user brains with gooey GUIs.
>
> I thought good alternatives would be the Magic Eye concept
> (3D visualizations), or XXX slideshows (soooo popular on
> the net), a Mandala generator, or a personalized paradigm
> generator (based on a Rorschach analysis of the user's
> system). For football fans, a football field with lines
> representing programs, for auto mechanics, a (virtual?)
> car where the pedals give input possibilities, would be
> think-able.
>
> Before I submit these demonic dementicisms to the richest
> man on (and under the) earth, I thought I better check with
> you, Oracle, specialist in input-output-putup things.
> Any applicable alternatives articulatable?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Unfortunately, Microsoft's continued development of alternative
} GUIs for Windows 95 has been stalled until the Windows 95
} development team can figure out how to fix the bug that prevents
} the user from being able to drag My Computer icon into the
} Recycle Bin.
}
} As for Microsoft Bob, his seeming beneficence belies his true
} nature.  Once the unsuspecting user is lured into this trap,
} the Windows 95 thunk layer begins snapping mercilessly at the
} user's heels until the system GPFs all over the place.  Not a
} pretty sight at all, if you ask me.
}
} However, a few ideas have been hashed around and hopefully will
} be out soon:
}
}      THE AUTO SHOP:  Similar to the idea you suggested,
}      this fanciful interface resembles an auto shop,
}      complete with shop tools, automobiles, and grease
}      spots.  Accomplishing any useful work in this
}      environment, however will be just a tad tricky,
}      considering the car has no engine or tires, and
}      the gas tank is empty.  The user could attempt to
}      use the shop tools to remedy the situation, but
}      they are notoriously buggy and may compromise
}      the system integrity, and set the garage on fire.
}
}      BULL IN A CHINA SHOP:  Specially designed inteface
}      for the illiterate user who usually ends up trashing
}      the system configuration so disastrously that the
}      PC no longer knows the difference between a CD-ROM
}      drive and a bologna sandwich.  Everything in this
}      specially designed GUI, including the Start button
}      is labeled "Do not touch."
}
}      32-BIT GRIDLOCK:  This GUI is filled with promises
}      of improved system performance, but the technicians
}      are still haggling over the coding details.  The
}      result is a GUI that initially looks promising, but
}      looks and feels very much like Old Windows.
}
}      SOLOMON GRUNDY:  A GUI specially designed for the
}      organizationally challenged.  Nothing is properly
}      categorized or neatly placed.  Want to use the
}      phone?  No problem, if you can figure out which
}      pile of dirty laundry it's buried under.  Looking
}      for that important sales document?  Well it must
}      be buried somewhere in that two-ton stack of
}      papers on the desk (or is it under the bed?)  In
}      any case, if you're a slob, you should feel right
}      at home in this pigsty of a GUI.
}
} And there you have it for the latest developments in the dystopia
} of Windows 95.  Enjoy yourself, and remember:  You asked for it!
}
} You owe the Oracle a beta copy of Microsoft Boob, the specially
} designed GUI for the computer luser.


848-06    (7dpxf dist, 3.4 mean)
Selected-By: David R Sewell <dsewell@GAS.UUG.Arizona.EDU>

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

> I need to know what product or service I should manufacture or sell.
> It's gotta fill an unfulfilled need for half the population on the
> planet (or more).  What are your top three or five ideas?
>
> (I've already invented a grovulator, but there seems to be only one
> customer for its output.  And the damned thing squirts dirty oil and
> excrement all over me every time I use it.  Watch the result below.)
>
> GR::gr();
>   Your supremely insipid supplicant wallows in stinking mire,
>   while whistling the praises of the Great Internet Oracle
>   through his twitching eyeballs.  Vomiting into his own nose,
>   the supplicant attempts to chant the entire Oraculad Gita from
>   Ancient Hindustan, but chokes on the distinction between
>   aspirated and unaspirated consonants.  His own aspiration
>   ceases.
>
> (See, I told you.  It was exceptionally disgusting this time.  Yucch!
> I'll try to wash up while you answer me.)
>
> Please help me get set up in a more rewarding business.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} - Lawn mowers with twin gas turbine engines
} - Banana peelers
} - Potato dispensers with reminder alarm
} - Bleached and DayGlo dyed hamsters
} - Cat washing machines
} - Goldfish deodorant
} - Portable grovulators for restaurant waiters
} - Adaptors to fit a CD onto a 12-inch turntable
} - Etch-a-Sketch for Windows(tm)
} - Aerospace Engineering for Dummies books
} - 5-year subcutaneous LSD implants
} - Metropolitan Air Shares
} - Federal metabolization permits
} - Carbon licenses
} - Polished neutronium earrings
} - Solid gold refrigerator magnets
} - Superconductor clotheslines
} - Ceramic nutcrackers
} - Tape filesystems
} - Personal Digital Adversaries
} - Web hide engines and Stupid Information Agents
} - Affordable 20-megaton thermonuclear warheads for home protection
} - Neckties reinforced with piano wire
} - Life size baby dolls that roll their eyes, snarl in demonic tongues,
}   spew phlegm, and try to claw your eyes out when you squeeze them.


848-07    (4bDof dist, 3.4 mean)
Selected-By: David R Sewell <dsewell@GAS.UUG.Arizona.EDU>

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

> Dear Oracle, Oh Oracle, Wise Oracle, Oracle of the farthest sight and
> the keenest hearing. Oracle whose wise sayings are quoted even in such
> far-off places as Oslo, Ontario and Orpington. Hear me now, great
> oracle, and solve my mystery:
>
> A fellow supplicant came to me and said that all new supplicants had to
>
> a) Put "Tell Me" in the subject line,
>
> b) Give a really great grovel, and
>
> c) ask a question that begins "How much".
>
> Now I can only think of one such question, and I'm sure you don't
> really want to waste your valuable time and effort letting me know the
> final quantity. So could you point me towards a web-site that shows the
> mathematical calculations of how much wood a wood chuck might be able
> to chuck if, perchance, a woodchuck could chuck wood?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Oh, if only there were such a web site, then people might bother to
} consult it instead of bothering me (then again...).  I did mention in
} Oracularity 841-03 that this question was available on the web, but
} then I didn't mention where the answer was located...
}
} However, since that's the nicest version of the question that I've
} received all afternoon, I'll see if I can help you towards the answer.
}
} Consider this.  You have twelve similar balls, but one of them is
} heavier or lighter than the others.  Three of them have written on them
} common English words ending with "gry".  Then Monty Hall opens a door
} in one of the balls and reveals that it contains the next number in the
} sequence 1, 11, 21, 1211, ... . He gives you the opportunity to switch
} envelopes, giving you a higher expected value of your winnings.  He
} might be always telling the truth or always lying, but you have only
} one question in which to find out on which day the prisoner is going to
} be executed, given that the execution has to be carried out by Friday
} and it must be a complete surprise to him that there are several
} English words each with two opposing meanings.  If you can work out
} what colour the bear is and find the probability that my other child is
} a girl then I think the answer to your question is clear - don't you?
}
} You owe the Oracle a copy of Winning Ways by Martin Gardner.


848-08    (2etye dist, 3.5 mean)
Selected-By: Darkmage <IDDAVIS@vms.cis.pitt.edu>

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

> Oh Proud Oracle who dictated sections of the Magna Carta as a practical
> joke, I abase myself before your magnificence and beg of you to answer
> my question.
>
> How can I tell if my dog has been replaced with an alien spy?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

}   Its not easy, but there are some telltale signs. Just have a little
} conversation with your dog and casually slip in these questions and see
} how close your "current" dog comes to the "real dog" responses.
}
}     Question:
}     What do you put on top of a house to keep the rain out?
}
}      Real dog:  Rooof
} Alien spy dog:  XccYclz
}
}     Question:
}     When I don't hit my drive as straight as I'd hoped, where does it
}     wind up?
}
}      Real dog:  Ruff
} Alien spy dog:  Zzyzzch
}
}     Question:
}     What would you suggest I use as a material for a landscape garden
}     mulch?
}
}      Real dog:  Bark
} Alien spy dog:  Newspaper
}
}   Of course the best way to find out for sure would be to just ASK me.
}
}   You owe the Oracle 25% of the movie rights.


848-09    (6bnun dist, 3.6 mean)
Selected-By: Darkmage <IDDAVIS@vms.cis.pitt.edu>

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

> quit
> exit
> ^C
> ^X
> exit
> logout
> ^Q

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} You computer junkies are all the same.  All you need to do is turn the
} handle and it will open.  Sheeeesh!  Have you never used a door before?


848-10    (4espm dist, 3.5 mean)
Selected-By: Michael Nolan <nolan@tssi.com>

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

> O mysterious, wondrous and downright amazing Oracle:
>
> How come we never see baby pigeons?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} You do, but you only see them before they go into their cocoons
} and grow wings.  Baby pigeons are usually called "squirrels"


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