The Rare Glitch Project


by Nicholas Petreley

              (IDG) -- In October 1999, three student
              filmmakers disappeared in a building in
              Redmond, Wash., while shooting a
              documentary. A week later, their
              footage was found. What follows is an
              edited transcript of that footage.
              Fortunately, I was able to cut the
              transcript, which was 385 pages, down
              to a half page by removing the

              The would-be filmmakers are Heather,
              Josh, and Mike. They are attempting to
              document the Rare Glitch Project, a
              legendary version of Microsoft
              Windows designed to be compact and
              stable. As the film begins, Heather
              describes the first landmark, Coffee Rock, to the camera.

              Heather says, "The way the legend goes, seven men were found sleeping in
              this break room, all the caffeine having been sucked out of their brains. They
              had markings on them that were made by a tiny piercing instrument that
              penetrated their skin while they were still alive. One symbol looked like a
              heart. Another was a hula girl that danced when he flexed his muscles.

              The next day, employees could see managers hovering nearby where the
              bodies once lay, but the men were nowhere to be found. But don't be
              frightened, Mike -- this story has nothing whatsoever to do with the rest of the

              The team makes a futile search for a graveyard
              called the Quality Assurance Labs. Instead, they
              find themselves surrounded by several piles of
              shredded paper. Mike looks suspiciously at the
              mounds, careful not to touch anything. "It looks
              like an e-mail evidence burial ground," he says.

              The trio is convinced that they are lost. They
              stumble across an abandoned programming
              laboratory filled with voodoo artifacts, one of
              which looks like a bespectacled Basic
              programmer, another like a bald guy holding a
              soup can. Josh logs in to one of the Windows NT
              workstations. He installs an application designed to hack into the network and
              find a map of the building. But the application won't run.

              Heather checks her FAQ. "It says to try installing Service Pack 5," she says.
              Josh inserts a CD, installs the service pack, and reboots.

              No luck. Heather adds, "It also says that if Service Pack 5 doesn't fix the
              problem, then remove it, install these seven hot fixes, and then reinstall the
              app." Josh clicks on the option to remove the service pack when he suddenly
              turns pale, overcome with fear. He looks around and sees the same thing
              everywhere. "What is this all over the monitors? It looks like blue ... "

              "Blue slime?" Heather asks.

              "Blue screens," Josh answers.

              Heather grabs the keyboard and reboots. But Windows NT simply boots to
              another blue screen of death. Heather reaches to her back pocket and grasps
              thin air. "Where's the FAQ? Who took the FAQ?"

              Mike squeals with evil laughter, "I shredded it! It was useless! NT is useless!
              The only thing more useless is this plot! This whole wing isn't more than
              10,000 square feet, and the audience is supposed to believe we can't find our
              way out?"

              Heather insists, "If we keep going south, we'll get out. That has to be it. After
              all, the quality of Windows NT keeps going south, and that never stops it from
              getting out of the building."

              But after what seems like several years of slogging through the curved halls,
              Josh shouts, "I don't believe it. Even though we've gone in a complete circle,
              we're mysteriously back where we started."

              Mike adds, "Admit it. It's Windows NT all over again."

              Heather insists, "No. No, it can't be. This is Windows 2000. Honest. It's ... it's
              ... I don't believe it. It is. It's the same damned product." Mike films a few
              hours of Heather sobbing uncontrollably.

              The next day, Josh vanishes into a black hole -- presumably the same one that
              consumed MS-DOS 7, Cairo, Zero Administration Windows, Windows
              security, your IT budget, Jimmy Hoffa, and the real killers of Nicole
              Brown-Simpson. Mike chases a specter of Josh into a broken-down corridor.
              Heather chases Mike until she finds him facing a corner of the room. She
              whimpers, "What are you looking for, Mike?"

              "A way to end this film," he replies.

              Heather places a dunce hat on Mike, then stares into the lens and sobs, "I am
              so, so sorry," and then drops the camera.

              You don't know the half of it, Heather.

O p a l C a t

Wow. A simultaneous parody of Microsoft and The BWP. Very nice.

You say “cheesy” like that’s a BAD thing.