Posted December 9, 1999 at 5:25 pm | No Comments

Since I set up my merchandise page about a year ago, I’ve received several orders from people who don’t seem to realize that the page is entirely tongue-in-cheek.  I’ve also received numerous letters from people who realize that the page is a joke, but who still have an honest desire for articles of paraphernalia.  For the benefit of these somewhat frighteningly overzealous fans, I’ve set up a store though Cafe Press that sells shirts, mugs, and mouse pads.  Seeing someone wearing a t-shirt would make my day, so why not take care of some holiday shopping today at the newly legitimate on-line store?

Marriage Proposal

Posted December 8, 1999 at 5:24 pm | No Comments

Everyone’s favorite Carnegie Mellon landmark.
The Fence currently reads:
“Ethan Bold, you studly, mouth-watering OS hunk:
Will you marry me?  Meet me at the porch.”

No sooner had Ethan Bold been voted the “Sexiest Man in OS” than he received a marriage proposal — and in quite a dramatic fashion.  Last night some mysterious admirer proclaimed her love for Ethan in green and white paint on the Fence.

It just goes to show you: men who write kernels get all the chicks.

Voting Scandal

Posted December 5, 1999 at 5:24 pm | No Comments

News flash!  This just in:


Recent investigations have uncovered a shocking ballot-stuffing scam that unfairly skewed the results of a recent online poll on the popular humor website, federal agents revealed Friday.  Two college students at Carnegie Mellon University have already been implicated in the scandal, and it is expected that more accusations will follow as the investigation is pursued further.  Yishan Wong, 21-year-old computer science major, was accused of heading the underground conspiracy that biased the results of the survey.  Also accused was Shawn Quinlan, 21, allegedly Wong’s leading accomplice.

Yishan Wong

Shawn Quinlan

The goal of the online survey was to establish which of the “incredibly sexy” male students in a certain Operating Systems course was the “studliest, most mouth-watering hunk”.  The survey proceeded for several days without incident, but suspicions of foul play began to surface when Chris Allwein, an underdog candidate, began gaining votes at an unnaturally rapid pace.  Soon, he had outdistanced both Jeff Hoel and Ethan Bold, two of the leading contenders for the title of “sexiest man in OS”.

“I mean, Allwein’s one sexy mother fucker, there’s no doubt about that,” commented Ian Nieves, another survey contestant, “but to outstrip Ethan [Bold] that quickly?  Simply ridiculous.”

Many of the votes for Allwein were legitimate; he managed to pull a large proportion of votes from the powerful “graffiti” contingent, an influential group of students heavily involved in electronic bulletin boards.  However, analysis of the server logs indicates that many of Allwein’s votes came from students who made unfair use of entire computer labs, moving rapidly from one computer to another to defeat the survey’s built-in mechanisms for preventing ballot stuffing.

The electronic web of deceit did not end there, however.  Soon after Chris Allwein took the lead, another competitor, John Stulz, began his own meteoric rise, garnering more than one hundred votes over the course of only three days.  Soon the tide had turned in his favor.  At first, it would seem that Stultz’s spectacular rise to the top was simply the reaction of voters incensed at Allwein’s initial dramatic upset, but suspicions of unfair voting practices soon mounted once again.

“Although John Stultz is undeniably an extremely sexy man,” remarked male fashion authority William Hein, “many of us found it hard to believe that he could have earned that many votes through honest means.”

Concerns such as these eventually prompted the recent investigation, which uncovered shocking levels of corruption among the followers of both Stultz and Allwein.

“When I scanned the voting logs I couldn’t believe my eyes,” said site administrator Dan Maynes-Aminzade.  “When a vote is cast from a given IP address, voting privileges from that address are suspended for one hour to prevent repeat votes.  However, I found repeated instances of voting from two students who had returned to the site hour after hour to cast new votes for Stultz.  One of these students, Yishan Wong, had voted nearly 70 times from the same computer!”  Further evidence was uncovered after a visit to Wong’s personal website, on which he had gone so far as to post a message bragging about the fact that he had “single-handedly voted [John Stultz] the hottest man in OS.”

“I was utterly shocked and dismayed when I heard the news,” exclaimed poll entrant Jeff Hoel, 21.  “This survey wasn’t supposed to be about who had the most dedicated friends or the most free time.  It was supposed to be about which of our amazingly hot bodies was the most exquisitely chiseled.  But some people just didn’t understand this, and they had to ruin it for everybody.”

Chris Allwein and John Stultz have both been disqualified from the competition in light of the unfair voting practices perpetrated their by fans, leaving the title of “Sexiest Man in OS” to junior computer science major Ethan Bold.  Bold was the next leading contender with 31 votes.

Ethan T Bold, the Sexiest Man in OS.

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