Left Hand, Meet Right Hand (5/14/03)

We'd like to apologize in advance if today's episode turns out subpar, but it seems there's some sort of bug making the rounds down here at the compound. At first we figured it was just seasonal allergies kicking us around as per the usual, but then we reached for a thermometer, and, well, we're pretty sure that hayfever doesn't raise one's core temperature a few degrees. So we're looking at mild fevers, chills, stuffy and achy heads, scratchy throats-- pretty much all the earmarks of your basic spring cold. However, we usually like to assume the worst, so we figure we'll just give in now and accept the fact that we all have SARS. (In addition to SARS, we also suffer from hypochondria down here at the AtAT compound. We think we probably got it from a dirty toilet seat.)

And speaking of dirty toilets (how's that for a masterful segue? And from sick people, no less!), faithful viewer caz filled us in on the latest development in the iLoo saga. Yes, people, it's now officially a saga. The story so far: Microsoft announces that its UK division is working on the iLoo, a porta-potty with built-in 'net access so people can surf and poop simultaneously. Then Microsoft corporate goes on-record to retract the original iLoo story, claiming it was just a hoax-- despite the fact that the official press release was still sitting on the microsoft.com servers. (It has since been unceremoniously yoinked, but at production time, it was still in Google's cache.) Well, here's the final (we hope) word on the subject: the Associated Press now reports that Microsoft has-- yes, you guessed it-- retracted its retraction.

Can we call 'em, or what? Mere hours after we surmised that the iLoo was indeed real and Microsoft was claiming it was a joke in an effort to save face, an MSN product manager was forced to admit that the company had "jumped the gun basically yesterday in confirming that it was a hoax, and in fact it was not." Yes, despite the fact that multiple company spokespersons had stated in no uncertain terms that the iLoo press release was an April Fool's joke (a month late, but hey, this is Microsoft), eventually "the company determined it was a real project, after all."

So now that Microsoft is reasonably sure that it was developing the iLoo, does this mean that UK-dwelling festival-goers will indeed get to experience the magic of MSN while perched on the potty as part of the most effective proposed method of spreading coliform bacteria since the tongue-operated flushing mechanism? Not so fast, folks; it seems that MSN's executive team decided that the iLoo "wasn't the best extension of our brand" and flushed the project earlier in the week. What a shame, right? But at least it's not a total loss; we figure all that research into toilets ought to come in handy in the next version of Windows.

SceneLink (3949)
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From the writer/creator of AtAT, a Pandemic Dad Joke taken WAYYYYYY too far


The above scene was taken from the 5/14/03 episode:

May 14, 2003: Wouldja believe Microsoft changed its mind again? Apparently now it's decided that the iLoo is real after all. Meanwhile, Apple announces that the iTunes Music Store just sold its 2,000,000th song, and things are starting to get vaguely nasty in the world of PowerPC 970 rumors...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 3950: It's Million Number Two (5/14/03)   You know, we're always a teensy bit leery of those immediate post-launch press releases that companies like to trot out in hopes of persuading Wall Street that a particular product or service is a smashing success...

  • 3951: Rumors Steel Cage Match (5/14/03)   Lordy help us, our heads are a-spinnin'! And yes, it's probably just because of the fever and nausea, but there's always a chance that it was actually brought on by trying to stay on top of the latest crop of PowerPC 970 rumors...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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