Sunday, May 3, 2009

How Well Does Computer Humor Age? Decade Check.

Hello again,

I lost a bit of sleep last night but am slowly realizing (as I type, which is scary) that it's time to write this week's Sunday (bloody Sunday ;) post.

On this week's humor search, I tripped over this piece of work, copywrite 1998, at They host more than antiquated humor there, of course, and in more categories than I had time to fully check out. Lots of good stuff, though :)

At first I was going to let this one go, but when I noticed the copywrite date and checked out some of the fake definitions, it dawned on me that it might be worth posting. Even if some of it isn't funny, or relevant, anymore, it makes for an interest sociological experiment in humor over the ages.

The only downside is, I'll never know "for sure" how many of the people who read this post actually remember having to choose between VHS and BetaMax at the video rental store. Hell, in 10 years, many people may not even remember the VHS video tape, much less the "store" ;)

Kind of sad, actually. Hopefully, in 10 years, people will still be leaving their houses every once in a while. You can meet lots of interesting people just by going out to buy a bag of potato chips. You can meet a lot of psycho's, too. And, of course, it's always hard to tell if people are really who they say they are and somewhat difficult to judge the veracity of any of their statements, based solely on their say-so. It's kind of like meeting people online, except you don't have to ask what they look like or what they're wearing ;) ...that last joke was a little perverse. If you're too young to understand it, I apologize :)

Enjoy the trip down memory lane :)

Geek Office Slang: New Office Slang Incorporating Geek

404: Someone who is clueless. From the Web error message, "404
Not Found," which means the document requested couldn't be located. "Don't
bother asking John. He's 404."

Adminisphere: The rarified organizational layers above the
rank and file that makes decisions that are often profoundly inappropriate or

Alpha Geek: The most knowledgeable, technically proficient
person in an office or work group. "I dunno, ask Rick. He's our alpha geek."

Assmosis: Remember "Osmosis" The process by which some people
seem to absorb success and advancement by kissing up to the boss rather than
working hard.

Batmobiling: putting up emotional shields. Refers to the
retracting armor that covers the Batmobile as in "she started talking marriage
and he started batmobiling"

Beepilepsy: The brief seizure people sometimes suffer when
their beepers go off, especially in vibrator mode. Characterized by physical
spasms, goofy facial expressions, and stopping speech in mid- sentence.

Betamaxed: When a technology is overtaken in the market by
inferior but better marketed competition as in "Microsoft betamaxed Apple right
out of the market"

Blamestorming: A group discussion of why a deadline was missed
or a project failed and who was responsible.

Blowing Your Buffer: Losing one's train of thought. Occurs
when the person you are speaking with won't let you get a word in edgewise or
has just said something so astonishing that your train gets derailed. "Damn, I
just blew my buffer!" (Synonym: "Head Crash")

Body Nazis: Hard-core exercise and weight-lifting fanatics who
look down on anyone who doesn't work out obsessively.

Bookmark: To take note of a person for future reference.
"After seeing his cool demo at Siggraph, I bookmarked him."

Brain Fart: A byproduct of a bloated mind producing
information effortlessly; a burst of useful information. "I know you're busy on
the Microsoft story, but can you give us a brain fart on the Mitnik bust?"
Variation of old hacker slang that had more negative connotations.

CGI Joe: A hard-core CGI script programmer with all the social
skills and charisma of a plastic action figure.

Chainsaw Consultant: An outside expert brought in to reduce
the employee head count, leaving the top brass with clean hands.

Chip Jewelry: Old computers destined to be scrapped or turned
into decoration. "I paid three grand for that Mac and now it's nothing but chip

Chips and Salsa: Chips = hardware, salsa = software. "First we
gotta figure out if the problem's in your chips or your salsa."

CLM (Career Limiting Move)- Used by microserfs to describe an
ill- advised activity. "Trashing your boss while he or she is within earshot is
a serious CLM."

Cobweb: A WWW site that never changes.

Crapplet: A badly written or profoundly useless Java applet.
"I just wasted 30 minutes downloading that crapplet!"

CROP DUSTING: Surreptitiously farting while passing thru a
cube farm, then enjoying the sounds of dismay and disgust; leads to PRAIRIE

Cube Farm: An office filled with cubicles.

Dead Tree Edition: The paper version of a publication
available in both paper and electronic forms.

Dilberted: To be exploited and oppressed by your boss, as is
Dilbert, the comic strip character. "Damn, I've been dilberted again! The old
man revised the specs for the fourth time this week."

Dorito Syndrome: The feeling of emptiness and dissatisfaction
triggered by addictive substances that lack nutritional content. "I just spent
six hours surfing the Web, and now I've got a bad case of Dorito Syndrome."

Egosurfing: Scanning the Net, databases, etc., for one's own

Elvis Year: The peak year of popularity as in "1993 was Barney
the dinosaur's Elvis year"

Flight Risk: Used to describe employees who are suspected of
planning to leave a company or department soon.

Generica: Fast food joints, strip malls, sub-divisions as in
"we were so lost in generica that I couldn't remember what city it was"

Glazing: Corporate-speak for sleeping with your eyes open; a
popular pastime at conferences and early-morning meetings. "Didn't he notice
that by the second session half the room was glazing?"

Going Postal: Totally stressed out and losing it like postal
employees who went on shooting rampages

GOOD job: A "Get-Out-Of-Debt" job. A well-paying job people
take in order to pay off their debts, one that they will quit as soon as they
are solvent again.

Gray Matter: Older, experienced business people hired by young
entrepreneurial firms trying to appear more professional and established.

Graybar Land: The place you go while you're staring at a
computer that's processing something very slowly (while you watch the gray bar
creep across the screen). "That CAD rendering put me in graybar land for like an

High Dome: Egghead, scientist, PhD

Idea Hamsters: People whose idea generators are always

Irritainment: Entertainment and media spectacles that are
annoying, but you find yourself unable to stop watching them. The O.J. trials
were a prime example.

It's a Feature: From the old adage, "It's not a bug, it's a
feature." Used sarcastically to describe an unpleasant problem you wish to gloss

Keyboard Plaque: The disgusting buildup of dirt and crud found
on some people's computer keyboards.

Link Rot: The process by which web page's links become
obsolete as the sites they're connected to change or die.

Meatspace: The physical world (as opposed to the virtual) also
"carbon community" "facetime" "F2F" "RL"

Mouse Potato: The online generation's answer to the couch

Ohnosecond: That minuscule fraction of time during which you
realize you've just made a terrible error.

Open-Collar Workers: People who work at home or telecommute.

Percussive Maintenance: The fine art of whacking the crap out
of an electronic device to get it to work again.

Perot: To quit unexpectedly. "My cellular phone just

Plug-and-Play: A new hire who doesn't require training. "That
new guy is totally plug-and-play."

Prairie Dogging: When something loud happens in a cube farm,
causing heads to pop up over the walls trying to see what's going on.

Ribs 'N' Dick: A budget with no fat as in "we've got ribs 'n'
dick and we're supposed to find 20K for memory upgrades"

Salmon Day: The experience of spending an entire day swimming
upstream only to get screwed in the end. "God, today was a total salmon day!"

Seagull Manager: A manager who flies in, makes a lot of noise,
****s over everything and then leaves.

Siliwood: The coming convergence of movies, interactive TV and
computers; also "Hollywired"

SITCOMs: What yuppies turn into when they have children and
one of them stops working to stay home with the kids. "Single Income, Two
Children, Oppressive Mortgage"

Square-Headed Spouse: Computer

Squirt the Bird: To transmit a signal up to a satellite. "Crew
and talent are ready...what time do we squirt the bird?"

Starter Marriage: A short-lived first marriage that ends in
divorce with no kids, no property and no regrets.

Stress Puppy: A person who thrives on being stressed-out and

Swiped Out: An ATM or credit card that has been used so much
its magnetic strip is worn away.

Tourists: Those who take training classes just to take a
vacation from their jobs. "There were only three serious students in the class;
the rest were just tourists."

Treeware: Hacker slang for documentation or other printed

Umfriend: One with whom one has a sexual relationship; as in,
"this is Dale,"

Under Mouse Arrest: Getting busted for violating an online
service's rule of conduct. "Sorry I couldn't get back to you. AOL put me under
mouse arrest."

Uninstalled: Euphemism for being fired. Also: decruitment.

Vulcan Nerve Pinch: The taxing hand position required to reach
all the appropriate keys for certain commands. For instance, the warm re- boot
for a Mac II computer involves simultaneously pressing the Control key, the
Command key, the Return key and the Power On key.

WOOFYS: Well Off Older Folks.

World Wide Wait: The real meaning of WWW.

Xerox Subsidy: Euphemism for swiping free photocopies from
one's workplace.

Yuppie Food Coupons: Twenty dollar bills from an ATM

, Mike

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