Why computers and printers fail when needed most
By Rebecca Peterson, Humour Editor
A recent study conducted out of the Useless Research Association has proved what many have suspected for years: Our technology can sense our stress and panic.
“I decided to run this study after the 15th time our photocopier jammed minutes before a deadline,” Dr. Inser T. Clevername told the Other Press last week. “It couldn’t just be coincidence. It was definitely something far more sinister.”
The tests were run with two groups of college students. Their task: To print out 22 copies of an essay and turn it in to their teachers on time. Group A was told to print their essays out an hour before class. Group B, however, was given only five minutes, and told that their teachers would not accept late work under any circumstances.
“The differences were extraordinary,” said Dr. Clevername. “Group A completed the task on time and with few, if any, technical issues. Group B was a complete disaster.”
Incidents reported during Group B’s exercise include one printer running out of paper, another running out of ink, one jamming completely, a computer freezing, three essays being completely erased from existence, two incidents of viruses infecting the host computers, and most impressively, the a computer monitor spontaneously combusting. Only one essay was ultimately turned in on time, but as the printer somehow managed to print the document in invisible ink, it was not counted for marks.
“The implications are incredible… and alarming,” said Dr. Clevername. “Does this mean that there is, in fact, a ‘Ghost in the Machine,’ as Asimov once theorized? Does even the most mundane technology possess some form of sentience? If so, why is it that their intentions seem to be so incredibly vindictive towards human life?”
Critics of this study have pointed out that human error is likely to blame for the mishaps, but Dr. Clevername only scoffed when asked to comment on the matter.
“Some ‘scientists’ out there would blame human beings for all of humanity’s problems,” Dr. Clevername said. “It glosses over the real issues. Technology is out to get us. The people should be warned.”