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Microsoft Announces Improved Bsod
By: Thad Phetteplace

Microsoft Announces Improved BSOD

In a surprise announcement today, Microsoft President Steve Ballmer

revealed that the Redmond based company will allow computer resellers and

end-users to customize the appearance of the Blue Screen of Death

(abbreviated BSOD), the screen that displays when the Windows operating

system crashes.

The move comes as the result of numerous focus groups and customer surveys

done by Microsoft. Thousands of Microsoft customers were asked, "What do

you spend the most time doing on your computer?"

A surprising number of respondents said, "Staring at a Blue Screen of

Death". At 54 percent, it was the top answer, beating the second place

answer "Downloading XXXScans" by an easy 12 points.

"We immediately recognized this as a great opportunity for ourselves, our

channel partners, and especially our customers." explained the excited

Ballmer to a room full of reporters.

Immense video displays were used to show images of the new customizable

BSOD screen side-by-side with the older static version. Users can select

from a collection of "BSOD Themes", allowing them to instead have a Mauve

Screen of Death or even a Paisley Screen of Death. Graphics and multimedia

content can now be incorporated into the screen, making the BSOD the

perfect conduit for delivering product information and entertainment to

Windows users.

The Blue Screen of Death is by far the most recognized feature of the

Windows (tm) operating system, and as a result, Microsoft has historically

insisted on total control over its look-and-feel. This recent departure

from that policy reflects Microsoft's recognition of the Windows desktop

itself as the "ultimate information portal." By default, the new BSOD will

be configured to show a random selection of Microsoft product information

whenever the system crashes. Microsoft channel partners can negotiate with

Microsoft for the right to customize the BSOD on systems they ship.

Major computer resellers such as Compaq, Gateway, and Dell are already

lining up for premier placement on the new and improved BSOD.

Balmer concluded by getting a dig in against the Open Source community.

"This just goes to show that Microsoft continues to innovate at a much

faster pace than open source. I have yet to see any evidence that Linux

even has a BSOD, let alone a customizable one."

Coming soon - Options for the Hour Glass of Doom!

      -- Jim Rosenbaum's Humor Page (
Bill Gates Meets Satan.

Bill Gates meets Satan.

"Wiiiiilliam Gaaaates..."

"Oh, hi, Satan. What's up downstairs?"

"It's tiiiiime..."

"Yeah, but we're still debugging Memphis, and Ballmer swears

he'll wipe out Adobe before lunch, and Melinda wants to change

the tile in the third-floor kitchen again, and..."

"Sorry, Bill. I've given you too many extensions already, not

to mention the Oracle8 launch event disaster, not to mention

Steve Jobs' head on a platter."

"Yeah, that was a good one. I think you enjoy this as much as


"Regardless, a deal's a deal. Your soul is mine, Bill Gates.

And today is the day you pay your eternal debt to me."

"Now, let's be reasonable here, Satan..."

"Reasonable?!? You want reasonable?!? You're the richest man

in the world! You've got a beautiful wife and daughter!

Microsoft is the most powerful company on the planet! We're even

using NT to run hell's WAN server! And frankly, it sucks.

That's one of the reasons I've come to collect. If you can't get

my network to run right, you'll spend the afterlife writing

Windows applications that run on doorbells..."

"What's your alternative, Satan? Netware? AppleTalk? OS/2?

You're a funny guy for someone who breathes fire."

"Well, God is porting all his heaven-critical applications to


"Java?!? Stop it, Satan. You're going to make me wet my pants

again like that time you told me to buy Novell for $50 a share."

"Yes, Java, running on Sun servers, IBM plumbing and Oracle

databases with thin clients accessing the apps via the web

through Netscape Navigator."

"That's not a solution, that's one of those Grimm's fairy tales

that scare children to death. I have yet to see an NC actually

being used to do anything except crash during demonstrations.

Look, Java is a nice little language for animating web sites, but

Shockwave after too many espressos isn't going to displace

Windows as an applications platform on hundreds of millions of


"Nevertheless, Java is the future of computing, and I'll be

damned if

I'm going to give God a strategic technology advantage!"

"Satan, what if I told you I could kill off Java with a single


"Interesting. Tell me more."

"Wait a minute. What's in it for me?"

"I promise I won't turn you into Larry Ellison's bidet right

this second."

"Okay, that works for me. Here's the word...disable."

"Disable what?"

"Disable Java support in Internet Explorer."

"You mean Microsoft's web browser won't run Java anymore?"

"That's right, brimstone breath. You want to run Java, give

Netscape 50 bucks per seat and pray that IBM doesn't buy the

company to merge Communicator with Lotus Notes."

"The Department of Justice will..."

"Will what? Punish me because I won't support a product my

enemies want to use to destroy my company? Chevrolet dealers

don't have to sell Fords. Pepsi's restaurants don't have to

offer Coke. Why does Microsoft have to support Java?"

"It's an industry standard..."

"It's an industry hallucination."

"There will be a public outcry..."

"From who? Network managers? MIS? The CIO? They're up to

their nosehairs in Cobol getting ready for January 1, 2000. To

them, Java is still a cute word for coffee."

"What about all those spiffy applets on thousands of web sites?"

"Microsoft owns 100 percent of the Apple and Windows preload

market for browsers, and our overall share has gone from zero to

half in two years. It's a safe bet most people will soon use IE

for web access. If they come to a site that doesn't work because

of Java, they'll simply jump to the next one. Trust me,

developers will switch to ActiveX faster than you can say


"What about other platforms..."

"Like Intel has competition?"

"Interactive TV..."

"We call it WebTV in Redmond."

"Venture capitalists have invested billions..."

"To get a date with Kim Polese."

"Sun will write a plug-in..."

"Not without the hidden APIs."

"Of all my minions, you are my very favorite, Bill. You may


"Thanks, Satan. Now, about that Exchange license agreement..."

      -- Jim Rosenbaum's Humor Page (
The Zen Of Windows

Behold, the Zen of Windows...


Imagine if, instead of incomprehensible text strings, your

computer produced error messages in "Haiku" ...
First snow, then silence.

This thousand dollar screen dies

so beautifully.
* * * * *
With searching comes loss

and the presence of absence

"My Novel" not found.
* * * * *
A file that big?

It might be very useful.

But now it is gone.
* * * * *
The Web site you seek

just cannot be located.

But endless others exist.

* * * * *
Chaos reigns within.

Reflect, repent, and reboot.

Order shall return.
* * * * *
Aborted effort.

Close all that you have.

You ask far too much.
* * * * *
The Tao that is seen

Is not the true Tao, until

You bring fresh toner.
* * * * *
Windows NT crashed.

I am the Blue Screen of Death.

No one hears your screams.
* * * * *
Stay the patient course.

Of little worth is your ire

The network is down.
* * * * *
A crash reduces

your expensive computer

to a simple stone.
* * * * *
Yesterday it worked.

Today it is not working.

Windows is like that.
* * * * *
Three things are certain

Death, taxes, and lost data.

Guess which has occurred.
* * * * * *
You step in the stream,

but the water has moved on.

This page is not here.
* * * * *
Out of memory.

We wish to hold the whole sky,

But we never will.
* * * * *
Having been erased,

The document you're seeking

Must now be retyped.

* * * * *
Rather than a beep

Or a rude error message,

These words "File not found."

* * * * *
Serious error.

All shortcuts have disappeared.

Screen. Mind. Both are blank.

      -- Jim Rosenbaum's Humor Page (
Deep South Edition Of Windows 98

Dear Microsoft Customer:

It has come to our attention that a few copies of the Deep South

edition of Windows 98 may have accidentally been shipped to the

northern USA. If you have

one of the Deep South editions you may need some help understanding

the commands.

The Deep South edition may be recognized by looking at the opening

screen. It reads WINDERS 98 with a background picture of the General

Lee superimposed on a Confederate flag.

It is shipped with a Daisy Duke screen saver. Also note the Recycle

Bin is labeled Outhouse, My Computer is called This Infernal

Contraption, Dialup Networking is called Good Ol' Boys, Control Panel

is known as the Dern Dashboard, Hard Drive is referred to as 4 wheel

drive, and floppies are them little ole plastic disc thangs.

Some name changes exclusive to winders 98

Word processor = tiperiter

Graphics viewer = colorin book

Graphics file = pichers

Calculator = addin mershene

Notepad = scratch paper

CD Player = juke-box

Internet Explorer = coondog

OK = ats aww-right

cancel = nosir

yes = yess'm

no = naaaa

error = a fine mess

find = hunt-fer it

go to = over yonder

please wait = fixin to do sumthin

back = back yonder

help = hep

start = crank it up

shut down = ternit off

settings = sittins

programs = stuff at does stuff

documents = stuff I done done

Other features: Instead of an error message you get a winder covered

with a garbage bag and duct tape.

Also note that winders 98 does not recognize capital letters or

punctuation marks.

Contents of My Documents: National Rifle Association mailing list;

Remington Arms price list; Winchester price list; Smith & Wesson

price list; Ford&Chevrolet dealers in GA by zip; Mobile home repair

service by telephone number; Kmart locations by address and telephone

number; family information (a 3 gig file); cuzzins I have slept with

(see family tree); list of Bud dealers by zip code; NASCAR racing

schedule; TV fishin show schedule; family dentist (empty file);

family doctor (see listing for family vet).

We regret any inconvenience it may have caused if you received a

copy of the Deep South edition. You may return it to Microsoft for a

replacement version.

      -- Jim Rosenbaum's Humor Page (
Microsoft Patents Zeros And Ones

-Microsoft Patents Zeros and Ones-

REDMOND, WA--In what CEO Bill Gates called "an unfortunate but necessary

step to protect our intellectual property from theft and exploitation by

competitors," the Microsoft Corporation patented

the numbers one and zero Monday.

With the patent, Microsoft's rivals are prohibited from manufacturing

or selling products containing zeroes and ones--the mathematical building

blocks of all computer languages and programs--unless a royalty fee of 10

cents per digit used is paid to the software giant.

"Microsoft has been using the binary system of ones and zeroes ever

since its inception in 1975," Gates told reporters. "For years, in the

interest of the overall health of the computer industry, we permitted the

free and unfettered use of our proprietary numeric systems. However,

changing marketplace conditions and the increasingly predatory practices of

certain competitors now leave us with no choice but to seek compensation

for the use of our numerals."

A number of major Silicon Valley players, including Apple Computer,

Netscape and Sun Microsystems, said they will challenge the Microsoft

patent as monopolistic and anti-competitive, claiming that the

10-cent-per-digit licensing fee would bankrupt them instantly.

"While, technically, Java is a complex system of algorithms used to

create a platform-independent programming environment, it is, at its core,

just a string of trillions of ones and zeroes," said Sun Microsystems CEO

Scott McNealy, whose company created the Java programming environment used

in many Internet applications. "The licensing fees we'd have to pay

Microsoft every day would be approximately 327,000 times the total net

worth of this company."

"If this patent holds up in federal court, Apple will have no choice

but to convert to analog," said Apple interim CEO Steve Jobs, "and I have

serious doubts whether this company would be able to remain competitive

selling pedal-operated computers running software off vinyl LPs."

As a result of the Microsoft patent, many other companies have begun

radically revising their product lines: Database manufacturer Oracle

has embarked on a crash program to develop "an abacus for the next

millennium." Novell, whose communications and networking systems are

also subject to Microsoft licensing fees, is working with top animal

trainers on a chimpanzee-based message-transmission system.

Hewlett-Packard is developing a revolutionary new steam-powered printer.

Despite the swarm of protest, Gates is standing his ground,

maintaining that ones and zeroes are the undisputed property of Microsoft.

"We will vigorously enforce our patents of these numbers, as they are

legally ours," Gates said. "Among Microsoft's vast historical archives are

Sanskrit cuneiform tablets from 1800 B.C. clearly showing ones and a symbol

known as 'sunya,' or nothing. We also own: papyrus scrolls written by

Pythagoras himself in which he explains the idea of singular notation, or

'one'; early tracts by Mohammed ibn Musa al Kwarizimi explaining the

concept of al-sifr, or 'the cipher'; original mathematical

manuscripts by Heisenberg, Einstein and Planck; and a signed first-edition

copy of Jean-Paul Sartre's Being And Nothingness. Should the need arise,

Microsoft will have no difficulty proving to the Justice Department or

anyone else that we own the rights to these numbers."

Added Gates: "My salary also has lots of zeroes. I'm the richest man

in the world."

According to experts, the full ramifications of Microsoft's patenting

of one and zero have yet to be realized.

"Because all integers and natural numbers derive from one and zero,

Microsoft may, by extension, lay claim to ownership of all mathematics and

logic systems, including Euclidean geometry, pulleys and levers, gravity,

and the basic Newtonian principles of motion, as well as the concepts of

existence and nonexistence," Yale University theoretical mathematics

professor J. Edmund Lattimore said. "In other words, pretty much


Lattimore said that the only mathematical constructs of which

Microsoft may not be able to claim ownership are infinity and

transcendental numbers like pi. Microsoft lawyers are expected to file

liens on infinity and pi this week.

Microsoft has not yet announced whether it will charge a user fee to

individuals who wish to engage in such mathematically rooted motions

as walking, stretching and smiling.

In an address beamed live to billions of people around the globe

Monday, Gates expressed confidence that his company's latest move will,

ultimately, benefit all humankind.

"Think of this as a partnership," Gates said. "Like the ones and

zeroes of the binary code itself, we must all work together to make the

promise of the computer revolution a reality. As the world's richest, most

powerful software company, Microsoft is number one. And you, the millions

of consumers who use our products, are the zeroes."


      -- Jim Rosenbaum's Humor Page (
Abbot And Costello Meet Windows 95


3) Abbot and Costello Meet Windows 95


Costello: Hey, Abbot!

Abbot: Yes, Lou?

Costello: I just got my first computer.

Abbot: That's great Lou. What did you get?

Costello: A Pentium II-266, with 40 Megs of RAM, a 2.1 Gig hard drive,

and a 24X CD-ROM.

Abbot: That's terrific, Lou.

Costello: But I don't know what any of it means!

Abbot: You will in time.

Costello: That's exactly why I am here to see you.

Abbot: Oh?

Costello: I heard that you are a real computer expert.

Abbot: Well, I don't know-

Costello: Yes-sir-ee. You know your stuff. And you're going to train me.

Abbot: Really?

Costello: Uh huh. And I am here for my first lesson.

Abbot: O.K. Lou. What do want to know?

Costello: I am having no problem turning it on, but I heard that you

should be very careful how you turn it off.

Abbot: That's true.

Costello: So, here I am working on my new computer and I want to turn

it off. What do I do?

Abbot: Well, first you press the Start button, and then-

Costello: No, I told you, I want to turn it off.

Abbot: I know, you press the Start button-

Costello: Wait a second. I want to turn it Off. I know how to start

it. So tell me what to do.

Abbot: I did.

Costello: When?

Abbot: When I told you to press the Start button.

Costello: Why should I press the Start button?

Abbot: To shut off the computer.

Costello: I press Start to stop.

Abbot: Well Start doesn't actually stop the computer.

Costello: I knew it! So what do I press?

Abbot: Start.

Costello: Start what?

Abbot: Start button.

Costello: Start button to do what?

Abbot: Shut down.

Costello: You don't have to get rude!

Abbot: No, no, no! That's not what I meant.

Costello: Then say what you mean.

Abbot: To shut down the computer, press-

Costello: Don't say, "Start!"

Abbot: Then what do you want me to say?

Costello: Look, if I want to turn off the computer, I am willing to

press the Stop button, the End button and Cease and Desist button, but

no one in their right mind presses the Start to Stop.

Abbot: But that's what you do.

Costello: And you probably Go at Stop signs, and Stop at green lights.

Abbot: Don't be ridiculous.

Costello: I'm being ridiculous? Well. I think it's about time we

started this conversation.

Abbot: What are you talking about?

Costello: I am starting this conversation right now. Good-bye.

      -- Jim Rosenbaum's Humor Page (
I Have A Cousin Who Works For Microsoft
Dear Abby,

I am writing to your advice-column because of a serious problem I am

facing. I am a Vietnam-era deserter from the U.S. Marines,

and I have a cousin who works for Microsoft. My mother peddles Nazi

literature to Girl Scouts and my father (a former dentist) is in jail

for 30 years for raping most of his patients while they were under

anesthesia. The sole supports of our large family, including myself

and my $500-a-week heroine habit, are my uncle (master pick pocket

Benny "The Fingers") and my aunt and kid sisters, who are well-known


My problem is this: I have just gotten engaged to the most beautiful,

sweetest girl in the world. She is just sweet sixteen, and we are

going to marry as soon as she can escape from reform school. To

support ourselves, we are going to move to Mexico and start a fake

Aztec souvenir factory staffed by child labor. We look forward to

bringing our kids into the family business. But-I am worried that

my family will not make a good impression on hers, once she has had a

chance to meet them.

In your opinion Abby: Should I-or shouldn't I-let her know about

my cousin who works for Microsoft?

      -- Jim Rosenbaum's Humor Page (
In The Fog.
There was a pilot flying a small single engine charter plane, with a

couple of very important executives on board. He was coming into the

Seattle airport through thick fog with less than 10 miles visibility when

his instruments went out. So, he began circling around looking for a

landmark. After an hour or so, he starts running pretty low on fuel and

the passengers are getting very nervous.

Finally, a small opening in the fog appears and he sees a tall building

with one guy working alone on the fifth floor. The pilot banks the plane

around, rolls down the window and shouts to the guy, "Hey where am I?" To

this, the solitary office worker replies, "You're in a plane." The pilot

rolls up the window, executes a 275 degree turn and proceeds to execute a

perfect blind landing on the runway of the airport 5 miles away. Just as

the plane stops, so does the engine as the fuel has run out.

The passengers are amazed and one asks how he did it. "Simple," replies

the pilot, "I asked the guy in that building a simple question. The

answer he gave me was 100 percent correct but absolutely useless, therefore,

that must be Microsoft's support office and from there the airport is just

five miles due East."

      -- Jim Rosenbaum's Humor Page (
Jennifer Katharine Gates
P.S. Some fun stuff to make your day:


For the first time in, oh, a decade, I think, something

from Microsoft shipped on time: Jennifer Katharine Gates,

weighted 8 pounds, 6 ounces when she was downloaded, er,

born, on Friday, April 26 at 6:11 p.m.. And what do Baby

Gates and Daddy's products have in common?

1.Neither can stand on its own two feet without a lot of third party


2.Both barf all over themselves--regularly!

3.Regardless of the problem, calling Microsoft Tech Support won't


4.As they mature, we pray that they will be better than that which

preceeded them.

5.At first release, they are relatively compact, but they seem to grow

and grow with each passing year.

6.Although announced with great fanfare, pretty much anyone could have

produced one.

7.They arrive in shaky condition with inadequate documentation.

8.No matter what, it takes several months between the announcement and

the actual release.

9.Bill gets the credit, but someone else did most of the work.

10.For at least the next year, they'll suck!


      -- Jim Rosenbaum's Humor Page (
Nashville Sourcecode

      -- Jim Rosenbaum's Humor Page (

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