Cursor: Apple OSX; Okmail; Python song

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The Independent Online

It's nice to know you can rely on some things. Microsoft rewrote millions of lines of code for its new version of Office for Apple's new OSX operating system, to take advantage of its super Unix stability. As the pictures from one user at http://homepage.mac.com/jwjwj/officeX.html demonstrate, however, Microsoft's coding techniques still apply. The page is a screen grab showing a series of dialog boxes for Excel, Entourage, Word, Internet Explorer and PowerPoint. And each says, "The application... has unexpectedly quit." Now that's consistency.

PERHAPS YOU received a mass e-mail recently pointing out that you were missing out on Freeserve's unlimited Net access package. Perhaps, like one of my colleagues, you wondered why Freeserve would have anything to do with folk who spam. Ah, but it was not spam, according to the nice man at London-based Okmail, which buys in e-mail lists with which to sp... er, send e-mail to lots of people at once. Everyone contacted had "opted in" to the list, he claimed. The audit trail showed my colleague had signed up at a site called email4prizes.com on 2 August, he said. The colleague insists he never had and never would, and that it was far more likely email4prizes just bought a spam list including his e-mail. "But you must have received an e-mail from them on 4 August," continued the man. "So what?" replied the colleague. "One gets lots of spam and just deletes it." "But it had an option to reply to unsubscribe from the list," continued Okmail's man. Again, so what? Spammers are notorious for offering "unsubscribe" addresses, where replying validates your e-mail and means you get even more spam. "But by not replying," the Okmail man explained patiently, "you opted in to the list." Got that? Wow. If that's opting in, we'll opt in the whole UK population to reading Network. "Congratulations!!! YOU have been chosen to receive this paper for ever!"

"WHAT DO you get if you cross my favourite toy as a child with one of my favourite films as a teenager?" asks a friend. Answer: a Lego rendition of the "Camelot" song from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. It's at http://www.lego.com/studios/screening/movie.asp?title=montypython, by Spite Your Face, an animation company from Newport, South Wales. But come on, guys: if you're really so clever, where's your Life of Brian Lego?

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