Geek evolution

Scientists working in the computer room at Berkeley have identified a new species: Machina Programeus. This strange and enigmatic creature can easily be recognized by its somewhat diminished wardrobe selection, and the ever-present odor of coffee on its breath.

The male of the species often has a lack of interest for matching colors, while the female usually dresses for comfort rather than style. The male and female of this species rarely have a desire for the intimate company of one another, with the exception of sometimes satisfying certain primal urges. Rarely do they travel in pairs and do not function well in a time-based, scheduled environment.

They are gregarious creatures, often chattering on incessantly in a somewhat cryptic language, understood only by their own esoteric community. However, when communicating to members outside of their close-knit circle of understanding, they try to ease the usually unwilling participant into their world by incorporating various terminologies into their conversations; for example, in company meetings, you might hear, “I’ll talk to you ‘off-line’ about that, Phil.” Or, when dealing with mentally challenged individuals, you could hear, “I think the ‘FAT’ is missing from your brain.” And finally, when talking to their offspring, there’s the eternal “You march yourself right in there and ‘defrag’ your bedroom.”

Their diet is simple, yet satisfying, consisting of doughnuts, pizza, soda, hamburgers and, of course, coffee. They tend to frequent electronics stores and are usually found drooling over multi-gigabyte hard drives or Pentium motherboards, muttering to themselves, “If only I had 32 meg of memory, *then* I could keep NT from crashing.”

Their distant cousin, Machina System Managereous, can be nocturnal and is fiercely territorial, without exception. Some Machina Programeous are resentful of the Machina System Managereous because of the control they have over their functional environment. But this attitude is often destructive and only leads to feudal relationships and hours of relentless flaming.

If you ever find yourself alone in a room with a Machina Programeous, try to keep conversations limited to a subject matter unrelated to computer technologies or you may be trapped for hours, (whatever you do, do not mention Linux, compilers or mobile satellite) attempting to create an exit phrase such as, “Gee, look at the time,” or “I just remembered, I have to return that call.” However, many of these exit phrases are not new to the Machina Programeous and circumventions are readily employed when confronted with them.

Lightbulbs and forums

How many group posters does it take to change a light bulb?

1 to change the light bulb and to post that the light bulb has been changed

14 to share similar experiences of changing light bulbs and how the light bulb could have been changed differently

7 to caution about the dangers of changing light bulbs

27 to point out spelling/grammar errors in posts about changing light bulbs

53 to flame the spell checkers

41 to correct spelling/grammar flames

6 to argue over whether it’s “lightbulb” or “light bulb” …

another 6 to condemn those 6 as anal-retentive

2 industry professionals to inform the group that the proper term is “lamp”

15 know-it-alls who claim *they* were in the industry, and that “light bulb” is perfectly correct

156 to email the participant’s ISPs (even if he was a satellite internet provider) complaining that they are in violation of their “acceptable use policy

109 to post that this group is not about light bulbs and to please take this discussion to a lightbulb group

203 to demand that cross posting to hardware forum, off-topic forum, and lightbulb group about changing light bulbs be stopped

111 to defend the posting to this group saying that we all use light bulbs and therefore the posts *are* relevant to this group

306 to debate which method of changing light bulbs is superior, where to buy the best light bulbs, what brand of light bulbs work best for this technique and what brands are faulty

27 to post URL’s where one can see examples of different light bulbs

14 to post that the URL’s were posted incorrectly and then post the corrected URL’s

3 to post about links they found from the URL’s that are relevant to this group which makes light bulbs relevant to this group

33 to link all posts to date, quote them in their entirety including all headers and signatures, and add “Me too”

12 to post to the group that they will no longer post because they cannot handle the light bulb controversy

19 to quote the “Me too’s” to say “Me three”

4 to suggest that posters request the light bulb FAQ

44 to ask what is a “FAQ”

4 to say “didn’t we go through this already a short time ago?”

143 to say “do a Google search on light bulbs before posting questions about light bulbs”

1 forum lurker to respond to the original post 6 months from now and start it all over again….

What NOT to call your website

Everyone knows that if you are going to operate a business in today’s world you need a domain name. It is advisable to look at the domain name selected as other see it and not just as you think it looks. Failure to do this may result in situations such as the following (legitimate) companies who deal in everyday humdrum products and services but clearly didn’t give their domain names enough consideration:

1. A site called ‘Who Represents‘ where you can find the name of the agent that represents a celebrity. Their domain name… wait for it… is

2. Experts Exchange, a knowledge base where programmers can exchange advice and views at

3. Looking for a pen? Look no further than Pen Island at

4. Need a therapist? Try Therapist Finder at

5. Then of course, there’s the Italian Power Generator company…

6. And now, we have the Mole Station Native Nursery, based in New South Wales:

7. If you’re looking for computer software, there’s always

8. Welcome to the First Cumming Methodist Church. Their website is

9. Then, of course, there’s these brainless art designers, and their whacky website:

10. Want to holiday in Lake Tahoe? Try their brochure website at

The best way to avoid this sort of mixup is to make sure you get a professional to do the job for you. Find yourself an Orange County web design outfit or some other expert in your area. It will make a world of difference.

Fixing broken computers

An office technician got a call from a user trying to install some free seo software. The user told the tech that her computer was not working. She described the problem and the tech concluded that the computer needed to be brought in and serviced.

He told her to “Unplug the power cord and bring it up here and I will fix it.”

About fifteen minutes later she shows up at his door with the power cord in her hand.

You can never win huh?