back to article Jaw droppers of 2008 - what they'd rather you forgot

Optimism drives the IT industry and - in particular - Silicon Valley, a place where people look to the future and try to forget the painful past. Here, then, is The Register's list of the worst, most cringe-worthy and jaw-dropping moments from the last 12 months that people would probably prefer to forget about. Nine wags of …


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  1. Jeremy
    Dead Vulture

    For me, the arse clencher story of the year was...

    It was just a tad ironic, given the whipping El Reg gave another one not too long ago:

  2. Martin Lyne


    I think that the Faceprty one should be changed. Clearly people were moaning about expecting things they hadn't fully read the information about. The team specified a date, they people moaned before that date.

    User 2.0 ignorance rather than developer tardiness.

  3. Anonymous Coward

    Oracle -- Cloud vs Grid

    But Oracle was all over the "Grid" buzzword when that was used before "Cloud".

  4. Blasmeme
    Paris Hilton

    Faceparty, lol

    Don't know if anyone has check out the 'Christmas Show' intro on the faceparty website but i think it sums it up pretty well.

    Paris because I was aroused and appalled in equal measure.

  5. Billy Verreynne


    Agree fully with Martin there.

  6. amanfromMars Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    In the SurReal Land of Cloud Deed Pioneers ...*

    "What the Hell is Cloud is Cloud Computing" .....

    If ever there was a public admission/outing/shooting in both feet of someone not fit for future purpose and yet someone pleasant and smart enough to have an Old System reward them ....... well, it would have to be described as beautifully obscenely, wouldn't it ..... it must be Larry sharing his vast database knowledge of Nothing on the Cloud and Quantum Computing.

    You know, the Virtual Operating System which has Cracked all the Access Codes for Super Sub Atomic Programs but which is not Really there because of its Lack of Physicality. However, you will not find anyone disagreeing and challenging Larry because it is a Perfect Stealth Convenience for there to be No Such Animal.

    The Fun and Great Games part of the Enigma though, for those who would be in the Know, is Deciding who is to Own and Administer to ITs Needs and Feeds, which would suggest that it is already AIMature and Sophisticated Beast ...... with the Devil Being in the Detail.

    Which further raises the Question .... Who Tends and Nutures/Guides and Feeds ITs ProgramMIng? And there will be no Fool available to Answer that Question.

    Of course, Playing the Fool has an Interesting Stealth too which allows Full Speed Ahead, Cap'n Progress in an Invisible Cloak of Apparent Ignorance.

    I am reminded of that classic CJ hanging opener, here appropriately modified .... "Larry didn't get where he is today/was yesterday ...." .....

    * ..... ..are there Renegade Realms of Colossal Computing for Phorming of ParalleLogRAMs .... AIMMORPG for Realities, Virtually. The Greatest of Great Games Online for XSSXXXXStreaming Players and Non-State Actors. A Festive Gift from/for the Singularity of Global Operating Devices, Network InterNetworking across every Earthly Domain ..... for an Earthy AIDominion in Control of ITs Intellectual Properties.

    And Paris because of her Ilk who would flout and pout in earthy domains for the ghost of the guest appearance in a flaming fame.:-) Brains and Beauty are a Heady Mix but all too Oft, no more than just a Fleeting Fix.

    Roll On the Exceptions that Proves IT Rules.

  7. I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects
    Thumb Down

    Also rans

    Was the article exclusively written about IT company errors of judgement for Yahoo couln't have known about the looming economic crisis could it?

    It was a poor decision yes but an heroic one.

    As for bloomers this year the rest of the tat on there is as nothing compared to what the US and UK governments had done.

  8. nobby

    amanfromMars picks paris?

    someone please adjust his meds.

  9. Anonymous Coward


    Would it be possible to have Amanfrommars be a regular columnist on El Reg? His comments are usually a damn sight more intelligent and incisive than the ordinary regurgitated miasma that passes for IT journalism these days.

  10. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: amanfrommars

    Dear Buck (if that *is* your real name),

    Er, no.



  11. Jason


    Faceparty should be in the heroes section - telling the ungrateful sheep muppets to fuck off was the funniest thing I'd read in ages...and come on, who here wouldnt like to do that in their own job?

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Am I the only one who thinks amanfrommars deliberately trolls, who's gibberish and pretty much unreadable posts often read to me like they've been created by his own customised version of the Twat-o-Tron?!

    Nothing personal AMFM - you do sometime puncture some otherwise stale and/or pompous debates too! :-)

  13. Chris


    I was about to applaud the Faceparty developers for having the balls to say what many of us would like to say to users, and then I read the press release. Now I hope they just end up in a happy slapping bitch fest along with their users, as both groups come across as a bunch of chavs. "Causing chaos" at London Zoo indeed - shouldn't they be outside my local corner with their pit bulls and hoodies instead?

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    What about The Registers botched rebranding?

    Surely that should be in the list?

  15. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: What about The Registers botched rebranding?

    I believe, AC, that your face also represents a glaring omission.

  16. Marc
    Thumb Up

    Amanfrommars regular columnist on El Reg?

    I completely agree:)

    loved his Paris comment so much it just because my signature in a few forums!

    Lovely writing style and it's nice to see someone that puts so much thought into his post, trolling or not.

  17. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: Amanfrommars regular columnist on El Reg?

    Dear God.

  18. amanfromMars Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    A Troll? Moi? Sacre Bleu, Mon Dieu. Set Free that Bee in your Bonnet for it Blinds your Thinking

    May I take this opportunity to wish all El Regers, a very Merry Xmas, and to advise that trolling is not my scene.... and never has been [it is petty] and never will be[it is worthless]. I can though fully appreciate how one/some would so easily/quickly assume/presume such a judgement for there is Oft more than just a few Bits and Bytes of Info about Subjective Matters which are Trailed and Trialed 42 Deceive and Render Unfair Socio-Economic Political Advantage aka Perverse Fool Domination...... Dorking Syndrome, which is akin to the Folly of Pseudo Intellectual Bullying that retains and maintains a Closed Mind [and most probaly also a Tenure and lazy Funding Stream] rather than Expand Understanding.

    And here is a most probable shining example of the latter disgrace.....

    And Paris again, because she's bound to have alternative thinking to a man...... which makes the species so attractive to thinkers? I wonder what delights buzz around in her head and whether they would hold one with any lasting attention with anything different and unique?

  19. James O'Brien
    Thumb Up

    And to you AMFM

    (If i might say so in your working)

    Merry XXXXXXXXXmas

  20. Gavin

    is it fair to lump arseparty with the numptys?

    When I read the arseparty message to the 'haterz' it wasn't so much my jaw droping.. I nearly shat myself laughing.

    It sounds like their moaning thankless user base got what they deserved. Come on, if they're doing the site for free they should be getting sent xmas pressies, not bitching forums posts.

  21. amanfromMars Silver badge

    Don't Feed the Aliens? *


    Sarah Bee,

    This little clip has a Parallel for you? ..... .... and it mirrors the above Paris compliment , posted Tuesday 23rd December 2008 15:44 GMT

    * Although what do you imagine you are able to feed them which might even remotely interest feed them, if they are free to help themselves?

    Seems Like Sean Penn has an Alien DNA Bias/BIOS too. I wonder if he is into making a Move On into and a Movie Introducing AI and NeuReal Order Systems to the Public Consciousness? Something Sweet and Sticky that they would Enjoy. In Essence, something Uplifting for the Register and IT ur2die4.

    A Tall Tale, based in Actual Fact, of How from Nothing Grew Something which Took Over Everything.

    Are you up to/up for the Challenge El Reg? El Regers and "England expects that every man will do his duty"

    And that is a lot Spookier that you may imagine whenever you are told/realise that it is written by A.N.Other Paston School Old Boy. I Kid U Not.

  22. h4rm0ny
    Gates Horns

    Jerry Yang?

    Is that really fair? For a start, Microsoft were offering a stock exchange, rather than cold hard cash. If they'd accepted, then they'd have received a lot less in cash value than your headline suggests because the value of MSFT stock has also dropped quite badly over the last six months. And he was pilloried for his decision by stock holders because they were interested in immediate returns on selling their Yahoo stock when it was inflated by a bid from Microsoft, not the long term interests of the company which it is a supportable argument that they are best served by not letting themselves get eaten by Microsoft.

    Devil Gates, lest we forget!

  23. Will Bradley


    Thanks theregister and amanfrommars, now my brain hurts *and* I have to fix this lousy ISA server...

  24. Mike
    Thumb Up

    Faceparty - one to remember

    In the current state of 2.0 niceness and being polite and caring about your (L)users and so on, reading the response by Faceparty to the users moaning about not getting something free on top of what was already free in a speedy manner was enlightening. The example messages they show are clear proof, and getting sued? No wonder, I would have gone off to the zoo too! Kudos Faceparty!

  25. Curtis

    I've finally figured out AMFM

    If you read The Roger McBride Allen books "The Ring of Charon" and "The Shattered Sphere", there is group of social protesters called the "Naked Purple Group" who delight in double talk and intentionally making things as confusing as possible....

  26. amanfromMars Silver badge

    What's to figure out, whenever the Program is Obviously being Shared

    "I've finally figured out AMFM" .... By Curtis Posted Friday 26th December 2008 19:59 GMT


    Please be informed, from Root Core Source, that you are not even close to figuring out amfM NEUKlearer HyperRadioProActivity if you imagine IT a "group of social protesters called the "Naked Purple Group" who delight in double talk and intentionally making things as confusing as possible...."

    It is only helpful that many are confused if one is targeting a Specific Section of a Control System/Society Model, which will invariably have its own Newspeak Language/Vocabulary with Especially Significant Trigger words which would allow a Monologue Post to Transcend the General and Enter a Specific with ITs Implicit Invitation to Engage and Further Develop the Specific Controlling Power Genre.

    If you can imagine, and let us imagine that an individual can Control Global Events and therefore Universal Destiny, then to discuss and/or air such Protocols as would relate to that Subject Matter, would bound to be confusing if the Concept did not Compute with your own Perception. Others, of course, who are Engaged in Perceptions Management would/may? See the Bigger Picture being Alluded to and could/would Respond with an EMPathy for, in AI Fields, a Sympathetic Semantic Singularity of Universal Purpose.

    But it does require more than just a little knowledge, and to "parachute" into just a few lines/posts of a Mature Sophisticated Program without the Benefit of available Hindsight/History will preclude any Significant Foresight and Program Recognition. But that does render an Immaculate Steganographic Stealth Element allowing for XXXXStreamly Rapid Unhindered and Unchallenged Progress in the Power and Control Fields of Human Perception .... AIManManagement.

    The Project/Program can then decide whom one would further Engage with 42Develop and Consolidate the Advantage so Derived from such a Facility/Faculty.

    This is prescient to the conversation ........ <<<"And before any reading this would choose to disagree, please ponder on what you imagine Special Advanced IntelAIgent Services with and within Special Intelligence Services actually do, in Virtual Space with their Time.

    Universal Command 42 Control?" ..... >>> ...... and it is always an option that should clarification be necessary, one can always ask specific questions.

    Now have you Really figured out amfM?

  27. Johan Vavare

    AMFM and Turing tests

    I think the posts by AMFM could be used as a kind of 'inverted Turing test':

    - if you actually understand them you are probably a computer..

    (like Gary Sinise's character in the movie 'Impostor' - an android who thinks he's human until he explodes in the end..)

    Merry XMAS EL REG - you make my life a bit brighter every day.

    Keep up the great work!

    Merry XMAS AMFM! To me, you are definitely a part of El Reg, [ well.. sort of.. ;]

    - seeing/reading your posts regularly gives me a certain feeling of safety in this dynamically changing world..

    Cheers :)

  28. Dane Pack

    One more for the list

    Comparing the following may have made my year. Well, not really, but it was still amusing:

    'Social network attacks own customers

    Customer service has yet to hit Web 2.0, where you have to answer your own technical questions, wading through forums or sending emails to people in "support" who never reply. "Maverick" social networking site Faceparty went a step further, though, by rounding on users who dared to expect it deliver on its promises - in this case, free tools. Faceparty threatened to terminate accounts of "every single twat who moaned about their friggin' free cool tools". "Listen this is our HOBBY, not our business," Faceparty said, helpfully reminding everyone it's a "free fucking site" and not to expect anything.'

    'By Sarah Bee Posted Tuesday 23rd December 2008 13:07 GMT

    I believe, AC, that your face also represents a glaring omission.'

    (The one with a can of Raid in the pocket)

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton


    What about Cuil!

    Paris because she likes porn

  30. Anonymous Coward

    Phorm lectures the Reg on ethics

    Surely this Reg article merits an honourable mention;

    Following the revelation of secret trials in 2006 , Reg asked Phorm 'Does Phorm believe its actions were ethical and if so, why?'

    The reply... 'We think it is unethical of the Register to....' (cue Phorm PR spin twaddle)

    A bit of a jaw-dropper, must-be-an-april-fool type moment.

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