Sunday, May 23, 2004

Windows Error Code -- ID:10-T

So I just got back from my friend's house, and I'm now over forty hours into Xenosaga, with still no end in sight. Hence, I'm postponing that post, as I postpone all of my future-posts, as I recount what I've just done in the past hour.

There is a prank that absolutely must be played on all young persons who own computers but have no concept of how to properly maintain or use them. My friend's cousin Matt is one of those types of people, and thus is deserving of this truly dastardly electronic shenanigan. Furthermore, since he is lacking a broadband internet connection at his girlfriend's house, where he is currently residing, he's decided to play Dark Age of Camelot, to which he is insufferably addicted, at my friend's house, leaving the computer in the room next to where I've been playing Xenosaga. And everyone on earth should know never to leave their computer unattended anywhere near me. But I can't resist an easy mark.

I thought everyone would know that, after that high school prank of dropping the Shut Down icon into the Startup folder in Mac OS 8. A rather harmless prank that's easily remedied. Which is what the following is:

When Matt shows up tomorrow to play his Dark Age, he'll boot up his computer to find that nothing has particularly changed, but the mouse-pointer has been changed to the hourglass symbol, so as to make him believe that his computer is still booting well after it's already finished getting itself into Windows. This should slow him down for a minute or two before he just decides to start double-clicking on the desktop.

Mind you, there are no icons on the desktop. Oh, it looks like there are icons on the desktop, but that's because I took a screenshot of the desktop, using the PrintScreen button on the upper-right corner of the keyboard, opened up Microsoft Paint, hit Ctrl-V to paste the screenshot, saved the screenshot, and then turned that screenshot into his new desktop wallpaper. The next task is to take the desktop icons and move them somewhere else, preferably into a sub-folder within the My Documents folder, for when you inevitably have to fix the chump's computer.

So you now have a desktop that, by all rights, looks exactly like it did before, but click away at all of those icons, and you get absolutely no response.

What next? Take the taskbar and drag it down, so it no longer shows on the screen, and is therefore unclickable. Mind you, it still looks like there's a taskbar there, which is the result of the screenshot and wallpaper job.

This is a classic prank, and I really wish I could be there to see it, preferably with a video camera, but that would be too obvious. Sadly, I'll have to report on the ensuing mayhem second-hand. But it should be entertaining, because I don't think the boy has any idea to use the Windows key to bring up the Start menu, taskbar or not.

And, when it comes down to explaining the computer's problem with the desktop, my friend is going to say, "Uh-oh, it looks like you've got the ID-10-T virus," which will make Matt flip out some more. And, of course, we all know that ID10T looks like... well, just look. It's a sub-set of the EBUAK errors we used to get in tech-support; EBUAK, of course, standing for Error Between User And Keyboard.

AIM: therbmcc71

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