In his bid to corner the portable PC market, Bill Gates - or Old Custard Pie Face as we now know him - has already grabbed the letters A (for the in-car Auto PC), H (for Handheld PC) and P (for Palm PC).
The difference between the last two is so obvious I'm sure you don't need me to explain it. But engineers at Bray Enterprises have stolen a march on OCPF by patenting the remaining 23 letters of the alphabet.
To promote genuine user choice, bad-tempered users can choose between the Blaspheming PC, which swears back at you if you call it rude names, and the Courteous PC, which smiles infuriatingly and forgives you.The Deadly PC will assist in voluntary euthanasia (much kinder than using a standard laptop because it has had proper counselling), and if you're not sure you want to die, the Existentialist PC will convince you there's no point in living.
The Farmer's PC has been ruggedised to enable it to function for up to 24 hours in a wellington boot full of slurry, while the Golf PC totals your bar bill and fiddles your handicap while you play the 19th hole.
Your least favourite clients can be sold the Incendiary PC, which explodes when they look up your phone number in the address book, while the Jolly PC breaks the ice at meetings by reciting jokes recycled from old Christmas crackers.The Kareful PC (still in beta at present) adds the missing spell-checker to Word for CE 2, and the Laughable PC (also in beta) will be obsolete by the time it is launched. The Miserly PC has 1,001 excuses for not buying your own round, and can be combined with the Golf PC.
The Natural PC has a natural interface, so it doesn't understand a word you say, and the Olfactory PC communicates by smell (try not to invoke an error message in a confined space). We were working on the Quirky PC, but it seems someone got there first and called it the Newton, and we're not sure about the Rampant PC, as PCs are rampant enough already.
The Simple PC sounds like a breakthrough in natural interfaces, but actually it's for simple people, as it has no processor at all. The Talking PC is a breakthrough in natural interfaces, but please note the guarantee says nothing about listening or understanding. Honest resellers may prefer the Underspecified PC, which says it all, and can be transformed into the Versatile PC (transformed into a door-stop or paperweight, that is).
If you're fed up with worrying about sales targets or impending baldness, let the Worrying PC do it for you. The Xylophone PC is, well, we don't know, but what other words begin with X? And the Yoof PC has no manners or sense of responsibility.
But to take the market by surprise, we shall begin our product roll-out at the end of the alphabet, with the Zoological PC. This, of course, will be full of bugs.
Paul Bray is a freelance IT journalist.
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