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Internet Oracularities #932

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Internet Oracularities #932    (90 votes, 3.1 mean)
Compiled-By: Steve Kinzler <kinzler@cs.indiana.edu>
Date: Mon, 18 Aug 1997 00:10:33 -0500 (EST)

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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:
   932
   2 1 3 4 3   5 3 3 4 1

932   90 votes 0csyg 2domt 6fnth dopm6 6syl1 arze4 hqok3 efpjh diuo5 7gnya
932   3.1 mean  3.6   3.7   3.4   2.8   2.8   2.7   2.6   3.1   2.9   3.3


932-01    (0csyg dist, 3.6 mean)
Selected-By: kirsten@spike.wellesley.edu (Kirsten Chevalier)

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

> Oh, ever-expanding, Oracle, who can travel faster than the speed of
> light, please answer this more-or-less humble supplicant's question:
>
> If the universe is infinite in size, does this mean that any point in
> the universe is technically its center?  If this is the case, does this
> mean that I'm the center of the universe?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Yes Supplicant, you have stumbled on a fundamental property.  You are
} the center of the Universe.  Which explains why the Universe looks like
} it is expanding, everything is repulsed by you, and is trying to get
} away from you as fast as possible.


932-02    (2domt dist, 3.7 mean)
Selected-By: "Carole S. Fungaroli" <carole@email.unc.edu>

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

> Greatest Oracle, may you never find the floor to be sticky, please help
> me with this problem.
>
> When I visit the cinema, I like to have some popcorn to munch. (I get
> the child-size container, because the small one is nearly the size of
> the large one, but that's a question for another day.) The popcorn is
> especially tasty with a topping of imitation butter-flavored lipids
> (usually just called "butter"). The trouble is, I never seem to get the
> correct amount of butter. No matter how carefully I choose my words, I
> get a different amount than I wish. Here are some examples from recent
> weeks.
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   I'd like a child-sized popcorn with more than a little
>       butter.
>
> (Result: I get a lot of butter.)
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   Could I get a child-sized popcorn?
>
> Clerk:        Would you like butter on that?
>
> Me:   Yes, I'd like a little butter. Thanks.
>
> (Result: I get three drops of butter.)
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   I'd also like a child-sized popcorn. And I need to get
>       more than a little butter, but not a lot.
>
> Clerk:        Let me check with the manager.
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   I'd like a child-sized popcorn with twelve milliliters of
>       butter, please.
>
> Clerk:        Huh?
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   Could I get a child-sized popcorn? And when you put
>       butter on it, imagine the most butter anyone has ever
>       wanted, and give me 60% of that.
>
> Clerk:        You want butter up to _here_? (Pointing three-quarters
>       of the way up the side of the popcorn cup.)
>
> Me:   No, just a little butter will be fine.
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   I need just some butter on that. Not like a lot,
>       you understand, but just a few squirts.
>
> Clerk:        No problem.
>
> (Result: Texaco wants drilling rights in the cup.)
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   I'd like a child-sized popcorn with five squirts of
>       butter, please.
>
> Clerk:        How much is a squirt?
>
> Me:   You know, one press of the plunger on the butter
>       machine.
>
> Clerk:        What's a plunger?
>
> Me:   That knob on top of the butter machine.
>
> Clerk:        That doesn't come off.
>
> Me:   I don't want the plunger. I want you to push it
>       five times.
>
> Clerk:        I have to charge extra for that much butter.
>
> Me:   How much butter can I get without paying extra?
>
> Clerk:        A lot. An awful lot.
>
> Me:   Well, I don't want that much. Just five squirts.
>
> Clerk:        I don't think we have that much butter.
>
> Me:   Can I have it just a medium amount of butter, then?
>
> Clerk:        Okay.
>
> (Result: I get seven squirts of butter. But the clerk forgot to
> charge me for my drink, so that's a plus.)
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   Could you fill the cup about one-third full, then
>       put half a squirt of butter into it? Then do the next
>       third the same way, then the top third.
>
> Clerk:        I can't put butter onto only part of the cup. It gets
>       onto all the rest of the popcorn. I can sell you two
>       cups, though, and only put butter into one of them.
>
> Me:   How about if you make two cups that are half full.
>       Put a lot of butter into one cup, and no butter in
>       the other. Then mix the two together into one cup
>       and give it to me.
>
> Clerk:        I'll have to charge you extra for two cups.
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   How about if I come back there and show you exactly
>       how much butter I want?
>
> Clerk:        Sorry, sir, but it's dangerous back here.
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   On a scale of one to ten, the amount of butter I
>       want is a six.
>
> Clerk:        Gotcha.
>
> (Result: I get more butter than I've ever seen in my life.)
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   Just this much butter. [Holding my thumb and forefinger
>       one centimeter apart.]
>
> (Result: At the bottom of the cup is a one-centimeter layer
> of butter.)
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   Is there some kind of scale I can use to specify how
>       much butter I want? You know, like the Beaufort scale
>       or the Richter scale?
>
> Clerk:        I don't think so.
>
> Me:   Dang. Well, just give me a light hailstorm of butter
>       with no crop damage.
>
> Clerk:        Huh?
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   I don't want to get too much butter, but I want
>       a lot. How about if I tell you when to stop?
>
> Clerk:        Okay. Tell me when it's enough. [Fills a cup about
>       one-third full of popcorn, starts pumping butter.]
>
> Me:   Stop! That's enough!
>
> Clerk:        Don't you want more popcorn than that?
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   Could I get just a medium amount of butter?
>
> Clerk:        You mean, on some popcorn?
>
> Me:   Yes. I want a child-sized cup, please.
>
> Clerk:        We don't have butter.
>
> Me:   You don't?
>
> Clerk:        It's this artificially butter-flavored coconut oil.
>
> Me:   That's what I want.
>
> Clerk:        It's not good for you, you know.
>
> Me:   Butter's not very good for you, either.
>
> Clerk:        But we don't have butter.
>
> Me:   Okay, I'll have just a little of whatever you call it, then.
>
> Clerk:        But it's not really butter.
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
> Me:   Box of Junior Mints, please.
>
> Clerk:        That'll be $3.75. Do you want butter?
> * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
>
> So, great Oracle, please help me! How can I get the right amount of
> butter every time?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

}       The counter clerks are Pod People, raised in a secret greenhouse
} at Knott's Berry Farm.  Their average IQ is 83.  This, supplicant, is
} why they are not capable of getting it right.
}       Your only hope is to stay home,  rent a video, and prepare your
} own popcorn.  Sorry 'bout that.  You can't even bring in your own
} popcorn--it'd get cold and congealed before you got to the theater.
}       There's nothing you can do about it; for other types of problems,
} I'd try to help you out by selling you the Staff-O'-Zot Jr., for those
} _small_ problems; but you'd still end up just disintegrating the clerk
} and making your own popcorn.
}       Sorry 'bout that.
}       You owe the Oracle a copy of "Stop, or my Mom will Shoot" on
} Betamax and some popcorn with a little butter.  No, more than that.
} Aargh, that's too much!


932-03    (6fnth dist, 3.4 mean)
Selected-By: Christophe <xof@chanticleer.com>

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

> how to find love on the internet

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} [IMAGE]
} Looking for love in all the wrong places?
} Click here now for red hot strumpets.
} (All major credit cards accepted via a secure connection.)
} ---------------------------------------------------
}
} You searched for: +love
}
} There are approximately  5,918,666,972  matches to your request.
}
}  Love is a mini splendid thing: My thoughts on love and why you should
} believe them even though I haven't been laid since 1982....
} http://www.world_of_wankers.com/~pathetica
}
}  Navratilova wins in straight sets: 6-2, 6-love, 6-4. In today's
} thrilling if somewhat lopsided match, Czech tennis star Martina
} navratilova handily def.... More tennis results|Links to other tennis
} sites|Game, Set, and Ma....
} http://www.freeverse.frost.com/tennis/court/results
}
}  Love and Death. International symposium on the interconnections
} between romance and mortality in literature, music, psychology, and
} STDs. Invited speakers include J. Capulet-Montague, University of Fair
} Verona; Sigismond Lejoyeux, RJ Reynolds Institute of Cigar Studies; I.
} Solde, Trinity College Dublin. In Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont., Feb. 14,
} 1992. http://www2.notl.overintellectualization.ca/liebestod
}
}  All's Fair in Love and War. Startling new book reveals the dating
} secrets of Niccolo Macchiavelli, Sun Tzu, Genghis Khan, Napoleon
} Bonaparte, and other master tacticians and strategists. Plus:
} Absolutely divine pickup lines revealed to Joan of Arc by the angels.
} To order.... http://www.no_holds_bard_publishing_company/love&war
}
}  I LUVE YUO DADY. Jessica, my 4-year-old daughter, just made me this
} beautiful valentine. I knew you'd all want to see it, so I scanned it
} in immediately. Isn't it just adorable? Links to photographs: Jessica's
} first birthday|Jesssica's second birthday|jessica's third
} birthday|Jessica's fourth birthday|Family Vacation - Lake Tahoe,
} 1964|Fa... http://www.middleamericaonline.com/~cutestfamilyontheweb
}
}  Ammo, amas, amat, amare. If you love to conjugate Latin verbs, this
} site might interest you. If you love to conjugate other people who are
} conjugating Latin verbs, in the damp chill of a medieval dungeon, clad
} only in a torn and dirty hairshirt, while burly executioners stretch
} you on the rack and poke you with quill pens, this is the site of your
} DREAMS! Experience the pain and pleasure of mastering a dead language
} under extreme physical stress....
} http://www.torturechamber.edu/amor/vincit/insomnia
}
} Click here for the next  20  links.


932-04    (dopm6 dist, 2.8 mean)
Selected-By: Mark Lawrence <lawrence.4@osu.edu>

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

> There are three buttons on the wall in my cage. One is red, one is
> green, and one is blue. The red one opens a slot in the wall and a
> banana falls out of it. The green one gives me an electric shock. I'm
> afraid to touch the blue one... could you tell me what it does?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} It registers a "Yes" vote on Hard Copy's Viewer Confidence Poll.


932-05    (6syl1 dist, 2.8 mean)
Selected-By: Mark Lawrence <lawrence.4@osu.edu>

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

> Oh mighty Oracle, whose something is really something great, please
> tell me...
>
> I'm wanting to get in to domestic terrorism, and I heard that the
> Internet is the best place to find all sorts of fringe groups.  Can you
> tell me which ones are the best?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Probably the best of all the fringe groups is alt.sewing.fringe.
} In this group, you can learn how to make yourself a Daniel Boone
} deerskin jacket, or a 70's era dancin' suit, with rhinestones and
} flashing fringes, for the disco fool inside of us all!
}
} You owe the Oracle 19.95.  But wait! There's more...


932-06    (arze4 dist, 2.7 mean)
Selected-By: kirsten@spike.wellesley.edu (Kirsten Chevalier)

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

> O Illustrious Oracle, the sublime of the magnificent:
> Canst thou tell me the resolution if this quizzical conundrum?
> Thy humble peasant asks this question of thee:
> Good sir, Patrick Henry, that great orator, spake himself a speech on
> March the 23rd,
> in the Virginia House of Burgesses that ended with these patriotic
> words: "Give me liberty, or give me death!"
> But, alas, thy humble serf has not the entire copy of this great
> speech. Wouldst thou provide thy servant with the remainder of this
> articulation? I remain thy grateful and obedient retainer.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Well, You certainly nailed 10 of ten for the Grovel, so I guess I could
} tell you about that speech.  You see, way back when, Pat and I were
} pretty good friends.  I was taking a break from being an Oracle for a
} few years and made my money by selling woodchuck hides to the French.
} One day Pat came up to me telling me about this problem with his
} government; They were doing things like arresting people for little
} things like stockpiling guns, tar and feathering governors, and
} boarding ships at high seas. Any way so Pat comes up to me and go
} "Oreie, what can I say to make people rally to kick these fat,
} insensitive bastards out?" So I pull out a piece of paper and start
} writing down all about how children were starving and just how far just
} 70 shillings a day would go when he says "Can't we have some war in
} this? Readers love violence?"
} I said "What if I include a part about you challenge them?"
} "OK, what would I say? Maybe 'I can take you all my self'?"
} "No, it needs more of a ring to it..."
} "I could sing it.."*Whack*
} "Not that type of a ring, what about 'Give me liberty or give me
} death'?" "That works...  But about that death thing.."
} "Don't worry, nobody expects a politician to keep his word."
} "Good..."
}
} You owe the Oracle an original copy of the U.S. Constitution and a
} CD-ROM of gopher://wiretap.spies.com.


932-07    (hqok3 dist, 2.6 mean)
Selected-By: kirsten@spike.wellesley.edu (Kirsten Chevalier)

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

> ***************Better Treatment For Woodchucks Notice*****************
>
> Attention Internet Oracle. We, the Better Treatment For Woodchucks
> Organization (BTFWO), are tired of your woodchuck jokes. We, hereby,
> officially demand, that you remove all woodchuck jokes, or any
> references to woodchucks from your mailing list. If you do not, you
> will be subject to the following:
> 1. Woodchucks shall eat your home.
> 2. Woodchucks will take over your mailing list.
> 3. Your browser will permanently pointed to our website,
>    www.woodchuck.com.
> 4. Woodchuck 95 will be installed on your computer.
> Please, do not think this a joke. We are very serious about protecting
> the moral health of our woodchucks. We hope you are too.
> End Woodchuck notice
>
> "How Much Wood Could A Woodchuck Chuck, If A Woodchuck Could Chuck
> Wood?" "As Much As It Wants."

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Attention Samsung:
}
} Recently the Internet Oracle was spammed with the above legal notice
} purporting to be from the Better Treatment for Woodchucks Organization
} (BTFWO), accusing Oracle Industries, Inc. with Internet terrorism
} against woodchucks.  The notice continued by threatening legal and
} other terrorist actions if Oracle Industries, Inc. fails to comply with
} their demands.
}
} Upon examining the headers, we discovered that this spam had been
} routed through your server to give it an appearance of legitimacy.
} However, a quick search of InterNIC provided the true BTFWO domain,
} which is not in any way associated with Samsung.
}
} The Oracle can only presume that the spammer who has been utilizing
} your server in order to ferment retaliatory spam against both BTFWO and
} Samsung.  Please address this security hole immediately so as to
} prevent this spammer from striking again.
}
} Regards,
}
} T. I. Oracle
} President, Oracle Industries, Inc.
}
} P.S. You owe the Oracle as much wood as a woodchuck could chuck.


932-08    (efpjh dist, 3.1 mean)
Selected-By: kirsten@spike.wellesley.edu (Kirsten Chevalier)

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

> gzip -d woodchuck.tar.gz
> tar -xf woodchuck.tar
> cd woodchuck
> xmkmf
> make all
> make install
> man 1 woodchuck
> /usr/bin/woodchuck

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} > man 1 woodchuck
}
} WOODCHUCK(1)
}
} NAME
}         woodchuck - chuck wood
}
} SYNOPSIS
}         woodchuck [options] source [destination]
}         Options:
}         [-rlb]
}
} DESCRIPTION
}         This manual page documents the GNU version of woodchuck. GNU
}         woodchuck will chuck wood  from the source  directory to the
}         destination directory.  If no destination is  specified, the
}         wood is chucked into the user's current working directory.
}
}         It is  necessary  to remove wood  from an inode in  order to
}         make full use of it (exceptions: hike, sparrow, lemur, etc),
}         however the presence of too much chucked wood in a directory
}         can render it equally unusable. Hence it is recommended that
}         woodchuck be used in tandem  with sawmill(1), a  GNU project
}         replacement for the standard UNIX(tm) burn(1).
}
} OPTIONS
}         -r, --resilient
}                 Ignore  standard requests to  terminate. Will  only
}                 terminate on the use of ZOT -9.
}         -l, --lemur
}                 Lemur compatibility mode. Will not attempt to chuck
}                 wood already in use by the lemur program.
}         -b, --background
}                 Continue running, after the invoking user logs out.
}                 The same  result  can be  achieved  with  the nohup
}                 program.
}         -a, --all
}                 Chuck wood  from all directories  available  to the
}                 user. Use in conjunction with -br with caution.
}         -R n
}                 Specifies the  rate at  which wood will be  chucked.
}                 High values of n can increase system load markedly.
}         -h, --help
}                 Prints usage information.
}         -v, --version
}                 Prints version information.
}
} SEE ALSO
}         lemur(6), ZOT(1), sawmill(1), burn(1)
}
} AUTHOR
}         Joel Furr did most of  the work in porting  woodchuck from
}         the original Microsoft(tm) version. The Microsoft(tm) copy
}         is no longer distributed,  however  many of the key  ideas
}         are incorporated in Microsoft Windows(tm).
}
}                       17 August, 1997
}
} > /usr/bin/woodchuck
}
} Syntax: woodchuck [options] source [destination]
}
} > /usr/bin/woodchuck /tmp
}
} Felling wood in /tmp . . . Done.
} Chucking wood into /home/oracle . . . Done.
}
} > cd /tmp
} > ls -al
}
} drwxrwxrwt   4 root     root         1024 Aug 18 01:03 ./
} drwxr-xr-x  18 root     root         1024 Aug 18 00:59 ../
}
} > cd
} > ls -al
}
} drwxrwxr-x   3 jrl      jrl          1024 Aug 18 01:03 ./
} drwxr-xr-x   5 root     root         1024 Aug 18 00:59 ../
} -rw-r--r--   1 jrl      jrl           124 Jun 29 00:14 .bashrc
} -rw-r--r--   1 jrl      jrl           307 Jun 27 03:03 .profile
} -rw-r--r--   1 jrl      jrl          4096 Aug 17 02:01 wood0001
} -rw-r--r--   1 jrl      jrl          4096 Aug 17 02:01 wood0002
} -rw-r--r--   1 jrl      jrl          4096 Aug 17 02:02 wood0003
} -rw-r--r--   1 jrl      jrl          4096 Aug 17 02:03 wood0004
} -rw-r--r--   1 jrl      jrl          4096 Aug 17 02:01 wood0005
} -rw-r--r--   1 jrl      jrl          4096 Aug 17 02:04 wood0006
} -rw-r--r--   1 jrl      jrl          4096 Aug 17 02:01 wood0007
} -rw-r--r--   1 jrl      jrl          4096 Aug 17 02:05 wood0008
} [truncated for sanity]
}
} There you go, supplicant. All your data neatly stacked in blocks of
} 4kb.
}
} You owe the oracle woodchuck -arb run on your system as root.


932-09    (diuo5 dist, 2.9 mean)
Selected-By: Christophe <xof@chanticleer.com>

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

> Groovellie-grovellie
> Internet Oracle
> Answer my question so
> Carefully wrought.
>
> What is the quantity
> Xyloballisticly
> Launched by a marmot be-
> Fore You go ZOT?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Supplicant, Replicant
} Questioned repeatedly.
} Here is the answer
} For which you have sought:
}
} Cleverly phrased, but with
} Brazen audacity!
} You and your woodchuck
} will both get a "ZOT!"
}
} You owe the Oracle some lumber, marmot-laid.


932-10    (7gnya dist, 3.3 mean)
Selected-By: "Dr. Noe" <drnoe@cts.com>

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

> Oh magnificent and wise oracle who is greater than Stonehenge, Elvis,
> and processed cheese, more apt with words than Ed Gruberman, and
> better-looking than contac paper, tell me...
>
> What is the IQ of my toaster?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} It is a little-known corollary of the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle
} that an observer will slowly transfer intelligence to the object being
} observed; in other words, the more a thing is watched, the smarter it
} becomes. Einstein was on the brink of making this discovery just before
} his death, but it slipped away from him:  His chalkboard had became
} smarter than he was, and cleverly changed the equations to lead him
} away from the truth.
}
} This phenomenon explains many things in our everyday life, from
} computers to women to college professors -- but, in general, those "in
} the know" (if you'll pardon the pun) are in no hurry to tell anyone
} else.  Knowledge is power, after all.
}
} However, while your toaster has managed to leech a few points away from
} you as you wait for the toast to pop up every morning, it hasn't
} managed to achieve sentience or even get out of the single digit range.
}  I wouldn't worry about it, although you might want to just put the
} bread in and then do something else, like dance naked in front of the
} kitchen window -- that'll get other people staring at *you*, and put
} your IQ right back up there.
}
} You owe the Oracle an explanation of why TV programs are still dumb.


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