Predictions For A Perfect World
f an alternate universe with a different set of physics merged with ours, and if suddenly only the Right Thingtm ever happened in all situations, these then are the events I would predict for the future:
April 1st, 1998
- 9:30am: Homer Simpson wakes to the sound of a buzzer and a flashing light, and looking down on his console he notices the OS/2 MARKET SHARE dial has dropped into the red zone. With a squawk of panic he leaps up, scattering his stale donuts everywhere and proceeds to run around in circles and scream. Five minutes later he calms down to only a blithering mess and stares at the console, wondering what to do. With a meaty paw over his eyes he blindly reaches out and jabs a button at random. The flashing lights go out.
- 9:35am: Padlocks snap open and chains rattle free from the iron shackles of the IBM marketing division. Monitors glow again, lights shine, phones warm up and the money chugs in like an express train.
- 9:40am: Shutters and garage doors go flying up at the warehouses while the truck engines purr to life and the drivers study the maps of the old trade and distribution routes again. Palette upon palette upon palette of shiny shrink-wrapped boxes get loaded onto the trucks as they ready to pull out.
- 10:00am: IBMSAT-1, in geostationary orbit, swivels its big dish antenna around and prepares to relay the live press conference coast to coast.
- 10:10am: Steve Balmer, while monitoring Reuters, spits his Double-Whip Latte Mocha all over the keyboard and trips over his fax machine cord on the way to the phone. A resulting electrical short wipes out all communications at Redmond Campus Building A for six hours.
- 11:00am: The scheduled press conference is broadcast as planned, coast to coast, nation to nation, on CNN, C-SPAN, ABC, NBC, CBS, SkyTel and "Auntie Beeb."
- 12:00pm: Warp 5 hits the shelves, having been kept in secret beta and manufacturing since September, displacing the cloud-covered boxes until they topple onto the floor and get crushed under the stampede.
- 4:10pm: Communications in Redmond Campus Building A come back online. MSN promptly enters an eight-hour email outage.
- 7:00pm: Prime time, and the first in a series of 5-minute commercials from the newly awakened marketing UberJuggernaut hits the air. "Start Me Up" by the Stones drops to 4,981,721,323rd place on Billboard's Top 40.
April 2nd, 1998
- 2:00am: Top Secret Crack Stealth Squad "Blue Seals" break into Redmond Campus Building G and sabotage the mind control ray transmitter. Thousands of implanted receivers in the brains of trade journalists everywhere suddenly go dead.
- 9:00am: Ziff Davis online publishes an article with the headline; "No wait! It was all a horrible typo! We meant 'OS/2 is [a] DEAL!' "
- 9:50am: NBC is acquired. MSNBC is discontinued while IBMBC takes to the air for the first time.
- 12:00pm: Trevor gives me a pay raise.
April 4th, 1998
- Bill Gates is caught stuffing a blank check into Janet Reno's purse. Jim Barksdale thinks twice, loosens the rope and steps down from the block of ice. Lou Gerstner acquires the Hershey Corporation as an apology gift for Esther Schindler.
April 6th, 1998
- Heavy Monday trading leaves MSOFT at an all time low of three and a half shirt-buttons and a fleck of pocket lint as the financial community overreact to the news that, "Windows sucks".
- Larry Ellison starts spreading rumors that he might buy Microsoft.
- Trevor gives me another raise.
April 14th, 1998
- Matt Drudge breaks the story that the Gates Mansion was mortgaged to cover taxes; the indoor basketball court being rented to local youth league.
- Trevor gives me a promotion and another raise.
May 12th, 1998
- WarpCast subscription count hits 18 million, Guy Kawasaki asks for a job on the moderating staff.
- Lou G. appears on giant video screen behind Steve Jobs at a press conference and announces their $1.5 billion investment in Apple stock while doing a good job of not smirking when he stresses the "non voting" part.
May 13th, 1998
- Apple's corporate board votes unanimously to fire Steve Jobs.
May 27th, 1998
- In a last stab for immortality, William H. Gates the IIIrd spends the last of his fortune on renting the NASA Space Telescope array to beam his personal memoirs and "The Road Ahead" out to the stars.
June 1st, 1998
- Haligonian Media acquires Ziff Davis, Trevor gives me another promotion just before changing his name to Charles Foster Kane and getting caught in a love-nest scandal.
- Larry Ellison reveals on a French TV interview that he's on the new board of Microsoft Corp.
June 8th, 1998
- Crippled alien spaceship lands and requests help to repair a computer system riddled with the Word Macro Virus.
July 4th, 1998
- Godzilla opens at theatres, and the heavily guarded, computer generated image of the big lizard himself bears a striking resemblance to the ActiMates Barney.
November 3rd, 1998
- The Beatles get back together to record "Free As A (Blue) Bird"
June 31st, 2000:
- 9:30am: Homer Simpson, at his new job working for SPG, wakes up to the sound of a buzzer and a flashing light. With a meaty paw over his eyes he blindly reaches out and jabs a button at random, leveling Miami Lakes in the wake of an 80 Megaton nuclear explosion.
So, you think you're Nostradamus and can predict the future better than me, eh? Well prove it, in our Hypernews talkback forum.
Chris Wenham is the Senior Editor of OS/2 e-Zine! -- a promotion from Assistant Editor which means his parking spot will now be wide enough to keep his bicycle and a trailer.