The Fish
for 12 June 1997. Updated every WEEKDAY.
 
 
Suck Staff
 

Joey Anuff
Joey Anuff
Producer

 

Terry Colon
Terry Colon
Art Director

 

Ana Marie Cox
Ana Marie Cox
Executive Editor

 

T. Jay (the man) Fowler
T. Jay Fowler
Production Manager
& Ass Kicker

 

Heather Havrilesky
Heather Havrilesky
Senior Editor









	
Suck Alumni
Suck Alumni Text
 

Carl Steadman
Carl Steadman
Co-Founder

 

Sean (Duuuuude) Welch
Sean Welch
Suckgineer

 

Owen Thomas
Owen Thomas
Copy Editor

 

Matt Beer
Matt Beer
Development Manager

Where Do You Want to Eat
Today?

What you may not have known
when you ran "Where Do You
Want to Eat Today?" is that
McDonald's did hit that
way-new consumer model before
launching the most recent
crusade.

Every manager under the Golden
Arches issued detailed
survey-as-tray-liners last
year. If you gave up your
opinion and some
demographics, you got free
food. Brilliant.

They crunched the numbers and
found out exactly what people
wanted most. In the Beltway,
it was a quick drive-through,
over in Hawaii, it was good
fries, down South, it was a
clean place to eat - all this
data was rolled into the
first wave of "My McDonald's"
saturation bombing. That's my
grand conspiracy theory
anyway.

The folks at your parent
mega.corp knew that the folks
at the McDonald's mega.corp
would be the winners of the
food-service war. Just go
back and read that special
issue of Wired called
Scenarios. In one of the
longer, more interesting,
future-farces, they suggested
that a global cure for a
yet-to-be-invented disease be
stuck in the mix with "My Big
Mac." This gave everyone the
health care they needed along
with the two all-beef
patties, special sauce,
lettuce, cheese, and onion on
a sesame-seed bun.

Damn fine idea.

Westy

Speaking of damn fine ideas,
screw Wired! From now on,
we're getting all our
information on The Future
from the Golden Arches.

The clown has seen the future,
and it's got little onion
cubes!

 
Fish With Letter Icon
 

Heidi Roizen

Don't know if you caught the
Heidi Roizen interview in the
latest issue of Business
Week
,
but I think the passage
below merits your scrutiny.
Roizen basically bemoans her
previous life as a workaholic
and, seemingly, is very
pleased with her decision to
spend more time with her
children. I had to chuckle
when I read how much she
enjoys watching the nanny
give her kids a bath. What an
elitist idiot. If you ever do
a Heidi Roizen Net.Moguls
card (I should probably check
the archives before making
this request), the following
quotation would be a gem for
the back of her card.

Quotation from interview: "But
the best thing about this new
role is, it allows me to be
at home for the serendipitous
part of my home life. The
other day, my kids were
playing out in the yard, and
they got really dirty. I
asked my nanny to take them
for a bath. In the old days,
I would have snuck off to
look at some email, but I
decided to go and watch them
splash around in the tub
instead. That's the kind of
thing I wanted to be able to
do."

Word to ya mutha,

Al Thomas
<thomasab@acq.osd.mil>

Ooo, nice. We live for such
good quotage. Thank you.

Off to watch the gardener
watch the butler watch the
nanny bathe the dog....

 
Fish With Letter Icon
 

Suck World Tour?

Hello all -

I can't believe you haven't
cashed in on the opportunity
to branch out and take Suck
on the road. Just imagine,
"Suck:Seattle" or
"Suck:Virginia Beach"!
Unleash your poison wit at
the local level! Bash local
news anchors, lame art
scenes, cocktail nation bars,
and homogenizing
bookstores.... Then move on
to the next strip mall for
more! Bust out of those SOMA
offices and become a
traveling circus!

Think of all the globetripping
you could do - at HotWired's
expense!

Matthew Manley
<mmanle@luc.edu>

We don't like spending long
periods of time together, we
don't perform well live, and
most of us aren't allowed out
of the state, let alone the
country. On the other hand,
maybe we could hire some
"Suck girls" to pass out
T-shirts and plastic beer
mugs on Daytona beach next
spring....

 
Fish With Letter Icon
 

Machine to the Slave

You're right about the
elimination of tedious tasks
being the so-called "killer"
Internet app. The trouble
with the Net now is that it
is itself a tedious task. In
fact I think it virtually (no
pun intended) epitomizes
tedium: For every minute I
spend engaged by it, I spend
10 bored out of my skull,
reading insipid emails or
loading pages from a site
that ends up being completely
off the mark.

P.S. Speaking of "push"
technology, subscribing to
Suck is cool.

By God, what we really need is
an AI to browse for us. It'd
spend six hours a day
randomly cruising sites,
collecting an enormous cache
of data, and then delete it
all and go home.

- An Entirely Other Greg

 
Fish With Letter Icon
 

I just read your Suck piece on
AI, and you seem to think
that humanity's gonna be run
over by their own invention.
Hardly.

The minute "the boys in the
lab" use those millions and
billions of venture-capital
dollars to finally come up
with a machine that can think
like a human is the minute
that you've got a
multimillion dollar machine
that hangs out at the water
cooler and takes three-hour
lunches like the rest of us.

To wax philosophical, if the
computer is at least as smart
as the human, then it knows
it is intelligent. If it
looks like Pamela and sorts
socks to boot, as you say, it
would realize that it's being
wasted and go off and - in a
fit of mocking irony - join
Earth First!.

Sean Cearley
<Sean.Cearley
@corporate.ge.com>

My major point was supposed to
be that people are naturally
afraid of things they don't
understand, one of which will
eventually be AI. That said,
people are more than happy to
have machines - scary or not -
do things they don't like
to do, and as spooky as AI
might be, that's the crack
through which it's going to
emerge to snuggle up against
us.

By the time we finally
understand human intelligence
enough to reproduce it in
silicon, presumably we'll
understand it enough to
short-circuit parts. AI isn't
just going to spring, wholly
formed, out of the forehead
of some garage-bound geek,
it's going to be a long,
slow, arduous process of
discovery. And during that
discovery, we're presumably
going to learn how to unplug
the bits we don't like,
water-cooler conversation
included.

A more interesting question
is, how do we know what parts
to unplug? If you give a
banking program a sense of
greed (so it will be a better
banker), will it have the
potential to embezzle from
its owner/employer?

- An Entirely Other Greg

 
Fish With Letter Icon
 

Subject: Kasparov - loser?
Nah, try sellout

The best theory I've heard
thus far re Kasparov's recent
defeat is that he represents
the modern equivalent of
1919's Black Sox; that is, he
sold out to the Russian mafia
for so many rubles (or
perhaps a currency that
doesn't suffer from
four-digit annual inflation).
C'mon - how could Kasparov
miss a draw an amateur chess
weenie saw? In this light,
the supposedly
flambéed corpses of
Kasparov and his pet ego are
strictly red herrings for the
coroner's office.

Robert L. McMillin
<rlm@syseca-us.com>

Nice theory, except that chess
players are known for their
pomposity and/or pride. Would
you sell your dignity and
your raison d'être for
a price? Probably, but
Kasparov probably wouldn't.

 
Fish With Letter Icon
 

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