Wackyd History

WACKYD, A SHORT HISTORY

I used to work for an “astute” businessman whose attention to detail served to eventually run his business into bankruptcy. In an effort to avoid losing money, he would institute policies designed to catch errors that took a toll on company dollars. These policies were created without loopholes so that nothing would fall through the cracks. They added an enormous burden to the company bureaucracy. Essentially he would spend a thousand dollars to catch a hundred dollar mistake.

Like Mac Weenies the world over, the Mac Weenies in that company loved gizmos. I showed them a program called Wacky Lights. It caused the keyboard LED lights to blink from NUM LOCK to CAPS LOCK to SCROLL LOCK and back again. Soon it was on every Macintosh in the company. Since no detail was too small for the astute business owner who “ran” the company, he was soon immersed in the details of the blinking lights. He demanded that they be removed from all the Macintoshes. The Mac Weenies revolted. Nobody was going to take the blinking lights away. They didn’t have a strong affection for the lights; frankly they may have found them slightly annoying. But the owner was the kind of person who could instill hatred in an entire workforce. That hatred manifested in an employee revolt over blinking keyboard lights.

Meetings were held in which the effects of Wacky Lights were discussed. The costs associated with unproductive salary time continued to mount. When the series of meetings came to a close, the lights continued to blink, countless hours had been wasted and paid overtime was necessary to recoup lost time. The employees had won the “right” to let their extended keyboards blink from NUM LOCK to CAPS LOCK to SCROLL LOCK and back again. As new Macintoshes replaced older ones, Wacky Lights was quietly phased out of the company. A few years later, the business filed for bankruptcy and closed its doors forever.

It is in the spirit of unproductive time and an unhealthy attention to detail that I’ve written a version of Wacky Lights for UNIX. Enjoy.

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