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A Little Computer Humor Goes a Long Way

A Little Computer Humor Goes a Long Way
By Reid Goldsborough

We laugh, but there’s always some truth lurking behind humor, insights that can be illuminating. That’s why the best humor is self-deprecating. By poking fun at ourselves we reveal our humanity. Other jokes poke fun at those we collectively deem deserve it. If they don’t, it’s just not funny.

Computer users have long made fun of themselves, and they have generously shared these jokes with others. Telling a joke around the water cooler, or on the Internet around the virtual water cooler, is a tradition.

If you share jokes via e-mail, though, it’s always best to make sure recipients are receptive. Too many e-mailed jokes begin to look like spam — unwelcome in-box intrusions.

The jokes below circulate widely. You may have seen some of them, or not. But more importantly, do you see yourself?

• Three of Murphy’s Laws of Information Technology: 1. When computing, whatever happens, behave as though you meant it to happen. 2. When you get to the point where you really understand your computer, then it’s probably obsolete. 3. To err is human. To really screw things up royally requires a computer.

• Signs that technology has taken over your life: Off the top of your head, you can think of 19 keystroke symbols that are far more clever than :-). You back up your data every day.

• Among the 12 commandments of online flaming: Make things up about your opponent (It’s important to make your lies sound true). Preface your argument with the word “clearly.” Tell ’em how smart you are (Why use intelligent arguments to convince them you’re smart when all you have to do is tell them?). When in doubt, insult.

• Overheard a woman in a computer store saying to the sales assistant: “I want a game capable of holding the interest of my 6-year-old, but it’s got to be simple enough for his father to play, too.”

• Q. There are two shift keys — which should I use? A. Avoid unnecessary wear on either shift key by alternating between the two. Keep track of your usage of each key so that you press them in equal amounts. Your keyboard may be equipped with a small notepad; you should use this to make little tally marks in two columns for each time you shift. Remember, it’s better to go to a little trouble than wind up with a broken shift key.

• Signs that you’re a Net addict: You kiss your girlfriend’s home page. You step out of your room and realize that your parents have moved and you don’t have a clue when it happened. All of your friends have an @ in their names. Your dog has its own home page. Your husband tells you he’s had the beard for two months.

• Two signs that your son is a hacker: Your phone bill lists 1,987 household phone lines. Your son tells you that his private interview with the Secret Service agent was for a social studies class essay.

• Two signs that you’ve been on the computer too long: You’re reading a book and look for the space bar to get to the next page. You get in an elevator and double-press the button for the floor you want.

• A doctor, an engineer, and a computer scientist were discussing the oldest profession. The doctor says, “God created Eve from Adam’s rib, which obviously required surgery, so surgery must be the oldest profession.” The engineer, referring to an even earlier passage in the Bible, says, “God created order from chaos, a tremendous engineering feat, so engineering must be the oldest profession.” The computer scientist shoots back, “Yes, but who do you think created the chaos?”

• One of Microsoft’s finest technicians was drafted and sent to boot camp. At the rifle range, he was given some instructions, a rifle and bullets. He fired several shots at the target. The report came from the target area that all attempts had completely missed the target.

The technician looked at his rifle, and then at the target. He looked at the rifle again, and then at the target again. He put his finger over the end of the rifle barrel and squeezed the trigger with his other hand. The end of his finger was blown off, whereupon he yelled toward the target area, “It’s leaving here just fine. The trouble must be at your end!”

You can find more of the same at the following Web sites:

• Computer Humor

• Tina’s Humor Archives

• All Computer Humor


• Omri’s Computer Humor Page


Reid Goldsborough is a syndicated columnist and author of the book Straight Talk About the Information Superhighway. He can be reached at [email protected] or gold/column>.

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