I just got back from spending some time in cottage country ... decompressing. Not watching TV or computer screens, just hiking, canoeing and wading through 4 real paper books. I did make a new friend though, and thought I would give her a little air time on my blog so all readers can have a few moments of unexpected respite from immersion in tech talk:

Brandi the chipmunk here. A few days ago I came across a gigantic scary monster about one thousand times bigger than me. My network had rumors of these huge human beasts chopping down trees, but I had never seen one. I called the one I found Doug the human. He didn't seem interested in chopping down trees, he mostly just sat there slowly flipping through this stack of square leaves. I was curious about what this monster was doing in my territory so I set out to figure it out. It was pretty tricky to get him to do anything, I had to get pretty close before he even started watching me. I discovered he had enormous amounts of food but it didn't look too edible.

I decided to see if I could get him to collect some nuts for me, and discovered that if I hopped around like I was looking for food in front of him, (where I knew there was no food), he would actually pull out some nuts and put them where I was looking. It took another half hour to train this slow beast that the hopping around wasn't needed, he could just hold the nuts and I could get them directly.

The trick to getting what I wanted from the human beast of course was to let him think he was in control, that it was all his idea and that he was training me…. What a gullible fool ….. even when sitting in his hand I could be long gone before he was even half way to closing his hand on me. At one point he pulls out this big black thing, with a giant eye, that made scary clicking and beeping sounds. I don't know who he was trying to fool hiding behind that thing – it didn't even hide more than half his face.

It all turned out pretty well – I think I'll coin a phrase for manipulating scary monsters who are a lot slower than they think ... it is “like taking nuts from a human”.

I have to say it was very rewarding to take on this massive challenge, despite having to think way outside of the box, take enormous risks and synthesize whole new methods of operating to get results.


Doug the human here...... I'm thinking.... Brandi the engineer.