TweetFollow Us on Twitter

June 94 - View From the Ledge

View From the Ledge


[IMAGE 079-080_View_Ledge_rev1.GIF]

Dear Tao,

Someone at work is stealing all my pens. I know it doesn't sound like a big deal, but it's getting to the point where I'm going through dozens a week. Even more frustrating is that I'm certain it's happening during normal business hours, not at night.

I just know the Internal Revenue Service isn't going to believe a huge deduction for office supplies at the end of the year. What can I do?

Pound Wise But Pen Foolish

Dear Pound,

You are in one of those unique positions where you can not only solve the mystery of the missing pens, but also spruce your office up a bit.

The first thing you need to do is cover your walls with blacklight posters. As a minimum you should get a tiger, a Jimi Hendrix, and a flaming dirigible. What's really great is that although interior design has taken huge leaps forward since the 60s, blacklight art has remained remarkably the same. Any investment you make now is sure to be preserved for years.

Once you've got the posters, you naturally must have a blacklight to properly show them off. I would recommend the most powerful one you can get, but you should stay away from the strobes -- although rare, there are some people who experience seizures from strobe light.

At this point the trap is set. Now all you need to do is dust your pens with ultraviolet powder (available from any burglar alarm shop). Make sure that you leave the light off for the first day or two. Then turn it back on and watch the people who come back and forth from your office. The one with the glowing yellow hands is your best suspect.

Note that if you're going to spend much time working under these lamps, you should get yourself a pair of UV goggles. It's not a bad idea to have a pair anyway; they make a great fashion accessory to spice up any wardrobe.

If things ever get a bit dull around the office, you can always set up your own security desk. Imagine the thrill you'll get saying things like "Excuse me, miss, you'll need to be stamped in order to reenterthe building." Putting up a sign that reads "No bottles, cans, knives, or tape recorders" will just add to the ambiance.

Dear Tao,

Lately I've been pondering a real big question that I'm not making any headway with: what, exactly, is it that people are trying to accomplish? Sure, all these software companies are trying to change the world, make profits, and all of that, but why?


Dear Puzzled,

You're asking the question that has plagued people from time immemorial. It's been phrased lots of different ways, usually by big people thinking big thoughts and wearing strange clothes, but the crux is always the same: just what is the deal?

Different religions and philosophies will give you different answers. Buddhists will tell you about enlightenment, Christians will expound on heaven, existentialists will ask "Why do you even care?" and a ten-year-old kid will point to a candy store. Unfortunately, all of these solutions look too far forward into the future, are too imbued with concepts of the human spirit, and still are not answering the basic question as it concerns computing.

I know the answer, but as part of the fraternity of philosophers, advice columnists, and magicians, I'm not supposed to release our secrets. However, I've never been comfortable with being a part of the "in" crowd, so I'll tell you the answer: it's Pac-Man.

From Day 1 people have wanted to be entertained, but for millennia this need was never truly fulfilled. Then in the 1980s Pac-Man came along and there was a brief period of bliss. Money could actually buy happiness -- assuming you had at least a quarter and a Pac-Man machine nearby.

Of course, a person can take only so much of any given kind of happiness, especially one that goes "wokka, wokka, wokka, GOINK!" People became burned out, and the search has been on ever since. That's right: this $200 billion-a-year industry, and all those government think tanks, are actually doing nothing more than searching for the next Pac-Man. Most experts agree that the next big breakthrough will be in a driving game of some type, which explains why you've been hearing so much about the digital highway lately.

Dear Tao,

Believe it or not, I actually like wearing a suit to the office. I've tried the standard jeans and T-shirt outfit, but I just don't feel comfortable in them. My problem is that when I do dress up, my colleagues continually criticize me for it. What can I do?

Pinstriped in Pennsylvania

Dear Pinstriped,

Unfortunately, you're in a very difficult situation that probably isn't "curable." The ailment was discovered in the 1950s and is most commonly referred to today as the "Liberace Syndrome." The studies of the human genome seem to indicate that there's some sort of defect in the appearance gene that will make affected individuals want to start dressing flashier and flashier. It's not clear what causes it, although chronic exposure to jewelry, candelabra, or Las Vegas clearly will make the condition worse. You'll also find that your condition will become more severe with age.

The disease starts very mild. At first you'll shun sneakers. Then you'll start thinking that cotton has too rough of a feel. As things progress to the final and most outrageous stages, you'll find yourselfwanting to wear sequined capes and feather boas. Thousands of people have been afflicted by the Liberace Syndrome: Little Richard, Elvis Presley, Elton John, Madonna, James Brown, and Rip Taylor, to name a few.

So it's bad news and good news about your affliction. The good news is that it's possible to live a full, relatively happy life. The bad news is that you'll never be able to do so in the computer industry. My recommendation is to start singing every morning in the shower, find an agent, and figure out which colors best match your hair and complexion.


  • The Official Scrabble Players Dictionary by Selchow & Righter. Great words from aa to zyzzyva.
  • Pop Art Book of 30 Postcards by Magna Books. High time to send your friend a Lichtenstein.
  • School's Out by Alice Cooper (Warner Bros. Records). Try to find a used copy of the LP, which includes paper panties that were banned as a "fire hazard."

TAO JONES paid his way through college by volunteering as a subject for psychology experiments. He became obsessed with trying to figure out what the experiments he was participating in were trying to determine and then defeating them. One day he was told to go to the testing room down the hall and on the right. He went down the hall and entered a room that was completely dark. Figuring it was an experiment in sensory deprivation, he went in and sat down. Two days later, he emerged, nearly dead from dehydration. It was then that he discovered he'd gone down the hall and turnedleft only to end up in the janitor's closet. *

Tao Index: A person's belief in the truth of a particular argument is inversely proportional to their emotional fury in delivering it. *

You can determine the future of Tao Jones. Simply put, this may be Tao's last column. If he receives no more questions, we will put him in a job better suited to his skills: repairing Lisas and Apple IIIs. Will Tao be saved? Only if enough of you AppleLink DEVELOP with a question on office survival. *


Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

AirPort Utility 6.3.6 - Set up and manag...
Note: Most recent release available only within OS X 10.11 El Capitan update. Use AirPort Utility to set up and manage your Wi-Fi network and AirPort base stations, including AirPort Express, AirPort... Read more
Quicksilver 1.3.1 - Application launcher...
Quicksilver is a light, fast and free Mac application that gives you the power to control your Mac with keystrokes alone. Quicksilver allows you to find what you need quickly and easily, then act... Read more
Tidy Up (Five Users) 4.1.5 - Find duplic...
Tidy Up is a complete duplicate finder and disk-tidiness utility. With Tidy Up you can search for duplicate files and packages by the owner application, content, type, creator, extension, time... Read more
Mellel 3.4.3 - The word processor of cho...
Mellel is the leading word processor for OS X and has been widely considered the industry standard since its inception. Mellel focuses on writers and scholars for technical writing and multilingual... Read more
Skype - Voice-over-internet p...
Skype allows you to talk to friends, family and co-workers across the Internet without the inconvenience of long distance telephone charges. Using peer-to-peer data transmission technology, Skype... Read more
Bookends 12.6.0 - Reference management a...
Bookends is a full-featured bibliography/reference and information-management system for students and professionals. Access the power of Bookends directly from Mellel, Nisus Writer Pro, or MS Word (... Read more
Apple iBooks Author 2.4 - Create and pub...
Apple iBooks Author helps you create and publish amazing Multi-Touch books for iPad. Now anyone can create stunning iBooks textbooks, cookbooks, history books, picture books, and more for iPad. All... Read more
Web Snapper 3.3.9 - Capture entire Web p...
Web Snapper lets you capture Web pages exactly as they appear in your browser. You can send them to a file as images or vector-based, multi-page PDFs. It captures the whole Web page - eliminating the... Read more
Tunnelblick 3.6beta10 - GUI for OpenVPN...
Tunnelblick is a free, open source graphic user interface for OpenVPN on OS X. It provides easy control of OpenVPN client and/or server connections. It comes as a ready-to-use application with all... Read more
EtreCheck 2.5.1 - For troubleshooting yo...
EtreCheck is a simple little app to display the important details of your system configuration and allow you to copy that information to the Clipboard. It is meant to be used with Apple Support... Read more

Camel Up (Games)
Camel Up 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
The Martian: Bring Him Home (Games)
The Martian: Bring Him Home 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Based on the best selling novel and critically acclaimed film, THE MARTIAN tells the story of Astronaut Mark... | Read more »
This Week at 148Apps: September 21-30, 2...
Leap Into Fall With 148Apps How do you know what apps are worth your time and money? Just look to the review team at 148Apps. We sort through the chaos and find the apps you're looking for. The ones we love become Editor’s Choice, standing out above... | Read more »
Tweetbot 4 for Twitter (Social Networki...
Tweetbot 4 for Twitter 4.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Social Networking Price: $4.99, Version: 4.0 (iTunes) Description: *** 50% off for a limited time. *** | Read more »
Mori (Games)
Mori 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Stop, rewind and unwind with Mori. Time is always running, take a moment to take control. Mori is an action puzzle game about infinitely... | Read more »
100 Years' War (Games)
100 Years' War 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $3.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Tower in the Sky (Games)
Tower in the Sky 0.0.60 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 0.0.60 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
hocus. (Games)
hocus. 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: New, polished, mind-bending, minimal puzzle game with dozens of levels and extra-ordinary design Features:- Beautifully crafted... | Read more »
Mos Speedrun 2 (Games)
Mos Speedrun 2 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Mos is back, in her biggest and most exciting adventure ever! Wall-jump to victory through 30 mysterious, action packed levels... | Read more »
3D Touch could be a game-changer, but it...
Were you one of the lucky/financially secure enough ones to buy a new iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus over the weekend? Yup, me too (I’m not convinced I was either of those two things, but let’s go with lucky for now), so I thought I’d delve into just... | Read more »

Price Scanner via

Bare Bones Software Releases TextWrangler 5.0...
Bare Bones Software has announced the release and immediate availability of TextWrangler 5.0, a major upgrade to its free, high performance, general purpose text editor for Mac OS X. Built on a new,... Read more
Apple refurbished iPad Air 2s available for u...
Apple has Certified Refurbished iPad Air 2s available for up to $140 off the price of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping is free: - 128GB Wi-Fi iPad Air 2... Read more
Save up to $100 on Mac AppleCare Protection P...
Adorama has 3-Year AppleCare Warranties on sale for up to $100 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY & NJ sales tax only: - Mac Laptops 15″ and Above: $249 $100 off MSRP - Mac Laptops 13″ and... Read more
Updated Mac Price Trackers
We’ve updated our Mac Price Trackers with the latest information on prices, bundles, and availability on systems from Apple’s authorized internet/catalog resellers: - 15″ MacBook Pros - 13″ MacBook... Read more
27-inch 3.5GHz 5K iMac on sale for $81 off MS...
Adorama has the 27″ 3.5GHz 5K iMac on sale for $2218.99, $81 off MSRP, including a free copy of Apple’s 3-Year AppleCare Protection Plan, plus a free external DVD/CD drive, and a copy of Corel... Read more
12-inch MacBooks in stock for up to $120 off,...
Adorama has 12″ Retina MacBooks in stock for up to $120 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY & NJ sales tax only. For a limited time, Adorama will include a free Apple USB-C to USB Adapter,... Read more
EasyDocScan Turns your iPhone or iPad into a...
Note-Ify Apps has announced the release and immediate availability of EasyDocScan 1.0, their new business app developed for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devices. EasyDocScan is a simple application... Read more
15-inch 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for... has the 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $1799 including free shipping. Their price is $200 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this model (except for Apple’s $1699... Read more
2.8GHz Mac mini available for $988, includes...
Adorama has the 2.8GHz Mac mini available for $988, $11 off MSRP, including a free copy of Apple’s 3-Year AppleCare Protection Plan. Shipping is free, and Adorama charges sales tax in NY & NJ... Read more
iPhone 6s and 6s Plus Feature Improved Durabi...
Upgraded components in the new iPhone 6s Plus cost $16 more than the components in the earlier iPhone 6 Plus according to a preliminary estimate from IHS Inc. The bill of materials (BOM) for an... Read more

Jobs Board

Senior Payments Security Manager - *Apple*...
**Job Summary** Apple , Inc. is looking for a highly motivated, innovative and hands-on senior payments security manager to join the Apple Pay security team. You will Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - Retail Sales...
**Job Summary** As an Apple Solutions Consultant (ASC) you are the link between our customers and our products. Your role is to drive the Apple business in a retail Read more
*Apple* Site Security Manager - Apple (Unite...
**Job Summary** The Site Security Manager is a high-profile security position at Apple . The Site Manager is the face of Apple Global Security (GS) and primary point Read more
*Apple* Fulfillment Operations Execution Ana...
**Job Summary** The AMR Apple Fulfillment Operations Team is seeking a talented team player to drive the Apple Online Store (AOS) fulfillment performance to ensure a Read more
*Apple* Distinguished Educator (ADE) Communi...
**Job Summary** Apple is seeking candidates for a new position on the Apple Distinguished Educator (ADE) Program team as ADE Community Support Manager. Join a team Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.