The Son of Stupid Answers to Smart Questions

Posted by: Rea Maor In: Computers and Technology - Thursday, October 4th, 2007

Of course, after civilization collapses and I’ve been frozen in carbonite for 1000 years and thawed out and asked what the blazes happened, and after the scientists get done with me, the reporters will want a lot of interviews. They’ll want to know more about the IT industry. I’ll have to be sure to be ready for their questions, too.

How was software produced? – Usually with computers. We tried it with chiseling them on clay tablets, but we’d get all done chiseling and we’d stand back and watch and then, all of a sudden, nothing happened. We tried more clay, deeper chiseling, sharper chisels, sacrificing more virgins to the volcano, and then eventually we discovered that sand was sort of like clay and we could chisel the programs on silicon which was in the sand. And we put the virgins to work chiseling them.

How did Microsoft come about? – Microsoftness was what we were trying to combat with all of that Viagra. But Microsoft came about from the discovery that people would still buy silicon regardless of whether the program chiseled into it worked or not. So they invented closed source. This worked in the clay tablet days, too; you’d sell a clay tablet and they’d come back and say “This thing is blank!” and they’d just go, “No, that’s closed source chiseling!” and the customer would be confused, so they’d just go “Oh, I see.” and walked away. It worked for centuries!

Couldn’t people just write their own programs? – Well, yeah, but who would make any money that way? So the way to stop them was, don’t show them the program. We’d keep the source closed and hide what we were doing and eventually people forgot what a program looked like. Then we could go on and on, and they’d be convinced that this perfectly ordinary thing, writing, was actually very, very difficult stuff that only witches and warlocks could do with toad’s blood and bat teeth and black candles and pentagrams. The same thing with reading, after a while.

Didn’t they eventually run out of customers? – Well, we discovered that the less reading you let people do, the worse they get at it. But the more sex you let them do, the better they got at that. And sex makes more babies. So you take away code and literature and substitute lots of Viagra, so that you get lots of people can’t read and have no skills. You never run out of customers that way. The only downside is that the volcano gods starved to death, because with all the Viagra laying around, there weren’t any more virgins left.

Where did they get more programmers? – It turns out that programmers aren’t actually born. Instead, you have to conjure them. The recipe was so secret, even we didn’t know it, but it definitely involved some dice with more than six sides, a joystick, a model of the Starship Enterprise, a Monty Python tape, and gallons and gallons of caffeine. After you conjure them, you have to take special care of them. There’s these screwy rules, like never expose them to sunlight, keep them in a cubicle, make sure they had access to porn at all hours, and so on. Then they’d work like cave trolls.

I’ve had enough of this! We’re putting you back in the carbonite! – What, alone???


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