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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Eeky Geeky: Weekly Peeky at the Freaky – 5/13/04

This week EGWPATF is a solemn hurrah, a fond goodbye to the brand spanking new Campus Center offices I have come to, if not love, at least adapt to, after the fashion of the Boston Harbor lobster. Fed to the enjailed and the inducted on the gloomy prison ships of Boston’s past, the succulent, articulated nephropidae were soon a part of swanky dinner tables throughout the area, and then, upon the startling discovery that the harbor was approximately as poisonous and hostile to human life as the surface of Venus, the humble harbor lobster was left to flourish in the sludge, happily corrupted with dioxins, dining on the occasional toxic metal it bumbled across, until, rumor has it, some of the dirty decapods have ingested so much mercury that they have developed the startling ability to morph, ala T2, into whatever shape is necessary to camofluage themselves or slip into an especially rich and tasty drum of thermometers and tanning solution.

Thus I have foraged among the bright new halls of the Campus Center, oblivious to all, adapting, changing with the times. I have learned much over the semester. I have learned that in the spacious arena of the open office configuration, as we return to the Dickensian model of clerks on high stools, scratching away at our phones and computers, a sense of inviolate personal space and good manners do, in fact, arise, and there is a definite time and place to pick your nose.

In other news, this is the last hardcopy of EGWPATF to be seen for sometime. Read the wonderfulness online at eekygeeky.hostrocket.com; updated weekly, and roughly the same format as seen between the proud covers of The Mass Media, though there will likely be the occasional dirty word.

It’s been a long, geeky semester, with trials that would daunt the toughest of technology reporters or virtua-epiphenomological philosophers: The world is being divided like a split of firewood over Microsoft. The wedge went in at the EU earlier this year- listen for a sharp crack from China later on. Computer technology continues to stagnate, even as reliable old x86 gets left behind; we still haven’t done anything serious to the PC in years, except make them simultaneously smaller and hotter than toaster ovens. Furry websites that display an almost satanic disregard for human sanity continue to proliferate, and online political campaigning has almost reached the point where people care. Will wonders never cease.

Proof positive that the geek has gone pitifully, horribly mainstream is the Computer Museum of America, a roadside gimmick that purports to honor the heroes of the Age of Information. It houses the Computer Hall of Fame, a hall within which at least 7 or 8 people will gape at such luminaries as Charles Babbage, who can be said to have invented the computer as much as Leonardo DaVinci invented the Concorde, and Sid Meier, who more or less invented the “playing God because I have time to waste but calling it educational” game genre.

For all those out there reading this and musing that a Computer Hall of Fame sounds like wonderfully educational fun, let me dash your hopes on the rocks of painful reality. The Computer Museum of America is a traveling roadshow that is now housed at Coleman College, La Mesa, Arizona. Greater things have happened from less auspicious beginnings, but somehow, EGWPATF cannot predict legions of enthralled children oohing and aahing over dead boxen, and unless the hall of fame has A) cloned tissue from the luminaries or B) extremely spiffy robots, this is probably a doomed venture.

Besides, Babbage was a jerk. Couldn’t field to save his life, and never went over 1.618 in his life. Have a happy, and see me online: eekygeeky.hostrocket.com

About the Contributor
Carl Brooks served as news editor for The Mass Media the following years: 2003-2004