Chad Perrin: SOB

2 June 2006

the glorious IBM Model M keyboard

Filed under: Geek,Humor — apotheon @ 04:05

The IBM Model M keyboard, introduced circa 1984, was the very pinnacle of keyboard construction technology. They are characterized by buckling-spring switch keys with swappable keycaps, a satisfying clicky sound and easily recognizable-by-touch contact threshold, a heavy steel backplate, and enough heft to fell an ox with a single blow coupled with the durability to be used as normal immediately after slaying the beast. They have reportedly been used as weapons, bats in indoor cricket competitions, doorstops, chock blocks while jacking up the car, and grappling hooks, all without deleterious effects on the keyboard’s operation. Due to their superior design characteristics, the vast majority of those Model M keyboards manufactured in the mid-’80s are still in service today, or operational but neglected by the young philistines who now rule the workplace and utterly fail to recognize their splendid quality. While new replicas retail for around $50, used 1984 Model M keyboards complete with twenty year old cookie crumbs under the keys often go for upwards of $150, and they’re worth every penny. No kidding. Meanwhile, the dome-membrane switch keyboards manufactured this century have been hauled away to the landfill by the thousands, already failing and broken. The only vulnerability of the Model M keyboard is liquids: don’t get it wet while it’s plugged in.

The next time some sniveling whiner tells you his ergonomic Microsoft Natural keyboard is better, and it can even be put in the dishwasher (not that the Model M can’t, but don’t plug it in while wet), take your IBM Model M keyboard by one end firmly in both hands and proceed to beat his metacarpals (the longish, thin bones in the back of the hand) into powder. When your supervisor asks what happened, and why the brat is screaming, inform him calmly that that he’s had an attack of carpal tunnel syndrome and should probably be seen by a physical therapist. To prove your innocence, and that of your precious eight-pound (I kid you not) IBM Model M keyboard, you will be typing away comfortably at 120wpm, the very picture of tranquil productivity, the ultimate team player. It will, of course, be in perfect working order, as long as you were careful to not strike the soft, fleshy parts of your victim so that he did not bleed into it.

There were later variants of IBM Model M keyboard that featured drainage channels (we call them “blood grooves”) to protect them against just such a mishap, but the incomparable quality of the keyboard design was slightly compromised. One does not screw with perfection.

[reprinted from another venue]

Sometimes, I just slay me.

Filed under: Geek,Humor,Metalog — apotheon @ 03:18

In another online venue (TechRepublic, to be exact), I often get embroiled in technical discussions gone wonderfully awry. I’m a common counteractant to FUD there, and there are a few others with whom I regularly interact who stalk the discussions to provide the same public service. Then, of course, there are the trolls with whom we regularly find ourselves contending.

I’m reposting here something I’ve posted there recently, because I was just highly amused. I’ll also post the text of an email sent to me by another member of the community there (anonymized, of course) who appreciated my stylish wit.

First, a response to a troll:

I bow to your well-reasoned, cool-headed, professional and mature manner. Yes, you have won the day by rigorous logic and rational rhetoric. There’s no response to arguments like yours that can possibly hope to stand up to scrutiny. Insinuating I suffer a neurochemical imbalance certainly proves your case with regards to the comparative advantages of various technologies we use in our professional lives. Disparaging commentary about the personal characteristics of Linux users as a class of people, and someone you’ve never met in particular, makes a watertight case for the impenetrability of your system configuration despite the lack of anti-malware security software.

How could I have imagined there was room to ask for more hard evidence than that? Clearly, my attempts to address the fact of the Microsoft security model and the sad necessity of antivirus software for we mere mortals when we make use of Microsoft’s operating systems and applications was misguided and failed to bring any relevant focus to salient points in this discussion. I will cease and desist in my attempts to measure up to your towering intellect and mature integrity, as wanton insults have carried the day.

You are truly a giant among men, and you get laid more than me too.

I think that one ended the subthread of the discussion. Only time will tell. Here’s that email I mentioned, from another member of that online community:

Dear Apotheon;

I just had to write to say”WELL DONE INDEED”. I’ve never read anythig put so properly and so appropriately stated in my life. This scum is obviously a low life who want’s nothing better than to fight.

Better to just dump him ,but man, I’ve got to give it to you, you did it with grace,style and class. And every word a slap in the kisser.

I repeat, Well Done my friend this rabble you don’t need.

He can’t come anywhere near you although obviousy he’d like to.

I congratulate you on your ablity to maintain your own integrity while telling where to go in such a fashion.

I close in saying thank you, not only for defending yourself, but it made us feel better too.

All original content Copyright Chad Perrin: Distributed under the terms of the Open Works License