Customer: "I'm running Windows '95."
Customer: "My computer isn't working now."
Tech: "Yes, you said that."
Microsoft TimeTraveller 1.0
Microsoft has just released it's update to TimeTraveler
1.0, the popular computer application that turns Pentium-based PCs into
The first version of TimeTraveler; , Microsoft
now concedes, was not without problems. Unhappy users from around the world
flooded the support line with calls. "My son was trying to go back a week
earlier to do his history final a second time," one unhappy father from
Johannesburg reportedly complained, "and he ended smack dab in the middle
of the Boer War. What key do I push do get him back?" A caller from Bristol
grumbled that his wife had got stuck a few hours in the past. "Me an' the
missus can't agree on tea-time anymore," he grumbled, "an' she throws out
the Guardian before it even arrives. "
TimeTraveler 1.02 addresses the glitches that
plagued the first release. The legions of women who lost technogeek partners
to distant eras have been promised complementary copies of Widows '95.
But in addition to angry consumers, Microsoft
has also received criticism from politicians and pundits for the effect
of TimeTraveler on history books. At Senate hearings on Microsoft's domination
of the time travel market, a photograph was produced showing a beer hall
putsch in 1930s Munich, with what appears to be a grinning Bill Gates at
the foot of Hitler. A Microsoft representative countered that employees
and executives of the Seattle-based firm are free to time-travel like anyone
else with the software. "To suggest this is some nefarious world-controlling
thing on Bill's part is crazy," the Micromouthpiece testified. "Besides,
he couldn't work with Goebbels."
In response to criticism, Microsoft has issued
some tips with TimeTraveler 1.02. Here they are, from the release notes:
CHECK THE TIME. When installing TimeTraveler , make
sure your computer clock is correctly set. Failure to do this will result
in your immediately ending up a few seconds or minutes in the past or future,
in a state of perpetual confusion like Jim from Taxi. WATCH YOUR MOUTH.
TimeTraveler uses Billzebub, an occult algorithm developed in a Microsoft-IBM-Satan
partnership. Do not grumble, cuss, or otherwise invoke the powers and principalities
when installing Timetravleler. You'll be smoked like a gnat on a bugzapper
if you do.
MEMORIZE YOUR PASSWORD. When working with large intervals
of time, remember that there may not be much of an information age at your
destination. It's important to memorize the PowerWord, your registered
incantation that will speed you back to the present. You don't want to
end up running around a tar pit, hopelessly yelling your mother's maiden
name with a velociraptor in hot pursuit.
DO NOT PESTER THE BABY JESUS. A popular destination
for many Time travelers is Bethlehem, and it is not appropriate to make
a scene around the manger. We suggest you pay some token amount in Roman
currency to the innkeeper, and dress appropriately. There are some alarming
passages showing up in the Bible regarding "the strange visitors from beyond
Galilee, their heads anointed with visors, and possessed of much loudness
BE CAREFUL WITH YOUR CAMCORDERS. Remember that these
devices may look like weapons to people of the past, and a gentle request
to 'say cheese' may result in a broadsword to the head.
CLEAN UP AFTER YOURSELF. Archaeologists will resent
digging up the can of Pepsi you brought back in time. Particularly if the
can became the religious centerpiece of a newly unearthed Mayan temple.
DO NOT USE TimeTraveler TO CHANGE HISTORY, even if
it's just to travel back with a witty rejoinder for someone's cutting remark
a few days before. Do not use TimeTraveler to cheat death, taxes, or Bill.
Attempts to do any of the above will result in the termination of the TimeTraveler
license agreement. And Microsoft will tell Satan to give you a hotfoot.