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A Programmer and an Electrical Engineer are sitting next to each other on a long flight from LA to NY. The Programmer leans over to the Engineer and asks if he would like to play a fun game. The Engineer just wants to take a nap, so he politely declines and rolls over to the window to catch a few winks.

The Programmer persists and explains that the game is really easy and a lot of fun. He explains “I ask you a question and if you don’t know the answer, you pay me $5.” Again, the Engineer politely declines and tries to get some sleep.

The Programmer, now somewhat agitated, says “Okay, if you don’t know the answer you pay me $5, and if I don’t know the answer, I will pay you $50.” This gets the Engineer’s complete attention, and he sees no end to this torment unless he plays, so he agrees to the game.

The Programmer asks the first question. “What’s the distance from the earth to the moon?”

The Engineer doesn’t say a word, reaches in to his wallet, pulls out a five-dollar bill and hands it to the Programmer. Now, it’s the Engineer’s turn.

He asks the Programmer, “What goes up a hill with three legs, and comes down with four?”

The Programmer looks at him with a puzzled look. He takes out his laptop computer and searches all his references. He taps into the Airphone with his modem and searches the Net and the Library of Congress. Frustrated, he sends emails to all his co-workers and friends. All to no avail.

After over an hour, he wakes the Engineer and hands him $50. The Engineer politely takes the $50 and turns away to get back to sleep.

The Programmer, more than a little miffed, shakes the Engineer and asks, “Well, so what is the answer?”

Without a word, the Engineer reaches into his wallet, hands the Programmer $5 and goes back to sleep.”

Every time you bought a loaf of bread, you would have to buy a toaster.

You wouldn’t have to take the toaster, but you’d still have to pay for it anyway.

Toaster’95 would weigh 15000 pounds (hence requiring a reinforced steel countertop), draw enough electricity to power a small city, take up 95% of the space in your kitchen, would claim to be the first toaster that let’s you control how light or dark you want your toast to be, and would secretly interrogate your other appliances to find out who made them.

Everyone would hate Microsoft toasters, but nonetheless would buy them since most of the good bread only works with their toasters.

My computer crashed and died today
And I thought, “oh well what the hey”
Now I’d have time to clean my house
And see if I still had a spouse

It started out with weird frustrations
Combined with mild heart palpitations
And then my ankles began to swell
Withdrawal symptoms from no AOL

Chills ran up and down my spine
Oh, God I had to get on-line
To greet my buds and check my mail
I began to feel helpless and frail

Then I remembered the Good Guy’s Store
And all those computers by the door
I’d go there and when alone
With no one looking I’d sign-on

I stepped up to a computer, clicked on AOL
The Sign-On screen came up, man it sure looked swell
I clicked on the Guest name, then came the modem sound
I was having cold-sweats, as my heart began to pound

Then I typed my password, and the computer said, “Goodbye”
And that’s what I kept hearing each time that I would try.
This was just an evil plot, the store was playing tricks
If only they had known how bad I need my AOL fix

I …slowly… typed… my… password… then…I… stood….and…waited
The darned thing said , “Goodbye” again and I got real frustrated
That’s when I shoved the keyboard thru the monitor screen
And the last thing I remember is my loud shrieking scream

When I woke I was handcuffed being booked
I think I asked the data entry cop, if he’d get me a drink
Now I’m sitting in his chair, and I know I can get well
If I can just use his computer to sign on AOL.

The legendary search for a stable version of windows

In October 1999, three student filmmakers disappeared in a building in Redmond, Washington, while shooting a documentary. A week later, their footage was found. What follows is an edited transcript of that footage. Fortunately, I was able to cut the transcript, which was 385 pages, down to a half page by removing the profanity.

The would-be filmmakers are Heather, Josh, and Mike. They are attempting to document the Rare Glitch Project, a legendary version of Microsoft Windows designed to be compact and stable. As the film begins, Heather describes the first landmark, Coffee Rock, to the camera.

Heather says, “The way the legend goes, seven men were found sleeping in this break room, all the caffeine having been sucked out of their brains. They had markings on them that were made by a tiny piercing instrument that penetrated their skin while they were still alive. One symbol looked like a heart. Another was a hula girl that danced when he flexed his muscles.

“The next day, employees could see managers hovering nearby where the bodies once lay, but the men were nowhere to be found. But don’t be frightened, Mike — this story has nothing whatsoever to do with the rest of the film.”

The team makes a futile search for a graveyard called the Quality Assurance Labs. Instead, they find themselves surrounded by several piles of shredded paper. Mike looks suspiciously at the mounds, careful not to touch anything. “It looks like an e-mail evidence burial ground,” he says.

The trio is convinced that they are lost. They stumble across an abandoned programming laboratory filled with voodoo artifacts, one of which looks like a bespectacled Basic programmer, another like a bald guy holding a soup can. Josh logs in to one of the Windows NT workstations. He installs an application designed to hack into the network and find a map of the building. But the application won’t run.

Heather checks her FAQ. “It says to try installing Service Pack 5,” she says. Josh inserts a CD, installs the service pack, and reboots.

No luck. Heather adds, “It also says that if Service Pack 5 doesn’t fix the problem, then remove it, install these seven hot fixes, and then reinstall the app.” Josh clicks on the option to remove the service pack when he suddenly turns pale, overcome with fear. He looks around and sees the same thing everywhere. “What is this all over the monitors? It looks like blue … ”

“Blue slime?” Heather asks.

“Blue screens,” Josh answers.

Heather grabs the keyboard and reboots. But Windows NT simply boots to another blue screen of death. Heather reaches to her back pocket and grasps thin air. “Where’s the FAQ? Who took the FAQ?”

Mike squeals with evil laughter, “I shredded it! It was useless! NT is useless! The only thing more useless is this plot! This whole wing isn’t more than 10,000 square feet, and the audience is supposed to believe we can’t find our way out?”

Heather insists, “If we keep going south, we’ll get out. That has to be it. After all, the quality of Windows NT keeps going south, and that never stops it from getting out of the building.”

But after what seems like several years of slogging through the curved halls, Josh shouts, “I don’t believe it. Even though we’ve gone in a complete circle, we’re mysteriously back where we started.”

Mike adds, “Admit it. It’s Windows NT all over again.”

Heather insists, “No. No, it can’t be. This is Windows 2000. Honest. It’s … it’s … I don’t believe it. It is. It’s the same darned product.” Mike films a few hours of Heather sobbing uncontrollably.

The next day, Josh vanishes into a black hole — presumably the same one that consumed MS-DOS 7, Cairo, Zero Administration Windows, Windows security, your IT budget, Jimmy Hoffa, and the real killers of Nicole Brown-Simpson. Mike chases a specter of Josh into a broken-down corridor. Heather chases Mike until she finds him facing a corner of the room. She whimpers, “What are you looking for, Mike?”

“A way to end this film,” he replies.

Heather places a dunce hat on Mike, then stares into the lens and sobs, “I am so, so sorry,” and then drops the camera.

You don’t know the half of it, Heather.

The annual internet clean up campaign will take place on the evening of March 31st beginning at 9pm EST and continue until April 1st 9am EST. This annual event occurs to remove the trash that forms on the internet throughout the year. Without this annual cleanup campaign the Internet would become so overrun with trash that its ability to pass information back and forth would become severely restricted.

All internet users are advised to take the following precautions to prevent damage or loss of information:

1. Back-up all “bookmarks” or “favorites” – these will be essential to your ability to find your favorite sites once the internet has been cleaned.

2. Clean out your history folder on your internet browser…details can be found at the following website: www.clean.your/browser/history/files.html.

3. Clean our your history cache…details can be found at the following website: www.clean.your/browser/cache/files.html.

4. AOL users should request form # 843.02.00 by using keyword “Cleanup”. Please do not try to use form # 843.01.00 as it is long out of date.

5. Prior to the shut down of the internet at 9pm EST on March 31st all internet users are advised to disconnect their computers from their internet access lines (modem or cable connection)..inexperienced users are requested to contact their ISP for information on the disconnection procedure.

6. Remain off-line and disconnected from the internet until after 9am on April 1st.

7. Upon reconnecting to the internet direct your web browser to the following website: www.first/start/up/empty.html … this should correct all your bookmarks.

This annual campaign removes all outdated links, old abandoned web pages, and extinct email addresses. This frees up millions of gigabytes of space each year. If people would learn to surf responsibly, without leaving dead and outdated links, this annual campaign would no longer be necessary. John Gutzen, President of Free Old Outdated Links (FOOL), the governing body of the cleanup campaign is quoted “I see the day when the campaign will no longer be required, when no one is a newbie, and when every one follows FOOL’s philosophy. That day is a long way off, but I hope to see it in my life time.”

Please note: If you attempt to connect to the internet during the shut-down time, serious damage to your computer and internet connection could occur.

All users are advised to contact their ISP prior to March 31st 6:00pm EST in the event that they do not understand any of the above.

This notice was prepared by Free Old Outdated Links (Fool) and space was provided free of charge in this Internet publication through a joint internet community effort.



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