back to article BOFH: Judge us not by the size of our database, but the size of our augmented reality

BOFH logo telephone with devil's horns The Director is an idiot – that goes without saying – though the Peter principle doesn't even begin to describe him. He's got the sort of attention span that most people take a regimen of prescription pharmaceuticals to address, he has the business savvy of a bacon sandwich and no …

  1. Dave K

    Happy Friday!

    "There's been a lot of cheap imported blockchain on the market and apparently there are rust issues because of the poor quality galvanising."

    Absolutely outstanding!

  2. Michael H.F. Wilkinson

    Performance a little choppy ...

    I had almost (but not quite) forgotten about the robot lurking in the basement.

    Sheer genius. I will raise a glass to that once beer o'clock arrives

    1. baud

      Re: Performance a little choppy ...

      Well, anytime there's robots, they end up being killer robots, so the end wasn't unexpected. Still comedy gold, though

    2. Pirate Dave Silver badge

      Re: Performance a little choppy ...

      Wasn't the robot part of the BoFH vs PFY Wars from a few years ago?

      1. Peter2 Silver badge

        Re: Performance a little choppy ...

        I think it was more BOFH versus supplier wars. But was that really 2010? It doesn't seem like that long ago! :/

        1. baud

          Re: Performance a little choppy ...

          For me I would have say it's a remnant of a robot-building competition, where the goal was to traverse a maze, but the BOFH had a very liberal reading of the rules, like traversing the maze meant that going through the wall and over the other robot was compliant.

          1. KieranTully

            Re: Performance a little choppy ...

            BOFH being prescient as always:


        2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Performance a little choppy ...


          Episode 15. So good they did it twice! :-)

    3. Dr. Mouse

      Re: Performance a little choppy ...

      "I had almost (but not quite) forgotten about the robot lurking in the basement."

      Yeah, the BOFH & PFY vs Supplier (I think) war with the killer robots was highly amusing for a while. Good to dig up the past every now and again...

      ...Actually, this is BOFH, maybe that's not the best idea. May find a roll of carpet with something unpleasant inside!

      1. Stoneshop

        Re: Performance a little choppy ...

        ...Actually, this is BOFH, maybe that's not the best idea. May find a roll of carpet with something unpleasant inside!

        Only if you added too little quicklime.

        1. veti Silver badge

          Re: Performance a little choppy ...

          Fun thing about quicklime - if you slake it with water, it actually becomes a preservative, which is the opposite of the effect you wanted. So keep it nice and dry.

          1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

            Re: Performance a little choppy ...

            It doesn't have the effect that most people, ahem, "want", in this sort of context. It's a pretty good preservative whether slaked or not. The main "advantage" is of absorbing odours, not of aiding decomposition. Apparently.

    4. stiine Silver badge

      Re: Performance a little choppy ...

      How could you?

      When robots were mentioned...I thought "aren't there...". And when he said basement...I was already laughing.

      Congrats Simon, another stunning episode.

    5. Danny 5

      Re: Performance a little choppy ...

      It had to come back round at some point! hahaha

    6. Sir Runcible Spoon

      Re: Performance a little choppy ...

      "Performance was a little 'choppy'," the PFY warns."

      Kind of red-flagged that one immediately....RUN!!!!

  3. diver_dave

    Happy Friday

    I regret I only have one beer to pay down for the author!

    1. Korev Silver badge

      Re: Happy Friday

      Simon can have one from me too

      1. Venerable and Fragrant Wind of Change

        Re: Happy Friday

        But you're only a lager!

  4. Blockchain commentard

    Have to add Cole's Law to my list of excuses....

    1. Ordinary Donkey

      It is a broad-spectrum threat. Roombas also tend to turn evil when cole's law comes into effect.

      1. J. Cook Silver badge

        Paging Ambassador Stabby to the main airlock. Ambassador Stabby, please report to the main airlock.

        ( there are numerous posts on tumblr and other places about the adventures of Stabby the space roomba. galactic is the originator of them.)

      2. stiine Silver badge

        a rooomba and an incontinent dog....comedy at the expense of others.

    2. Alan J. Wylie is a firm of solicitors in North Yorkshire

    3. Giles C Silver badge

      Well in my last week before moving on I woke up a quiet office with laughing when I got to the Cole’s law reference.

      Thank you Simon for brightening up a very dull afternoon

  5. brotherelf

    Almost pint o'clock,

    so hop to it, chop chop, attabot!

    Excellent classic BOFH this week.

  6. Terje

    I forsee the nice gardening robot chopping off some of the corporate deadwood!

  7. Anonymous Coward

    Wind shear

    > Well, there's been several wind shear warnings this year which affects the cloud, probably due to global warming

    There's also Helmholtz-Kelvin instability in the cloud boundary layer to consider.

    [Blinded with science icon ->]

    1. TRT Silver badge

      Re: Wind shear

      I was going to move our data centre into the cloud, one with a direct clean, green hydro power source but...

      have you SEEN the planning restrictions for the top of Mount Snowdon? The cost of bribes alone makes it prohibitive.

      1. HelpfulJohn

        Re: Wind shear

        "Snowdon"? Really?

        Not a good choice if you're trying to instil confidence in computer security.

    2. skeptical i

      Re: Wind shear

      "wind shear in the cloud" reminded me of this oldie but goodie --

  8. Maverick

    "No, I mean have we got any artificial intelligence?"

    "Outside of senior management? No."

    genius and VERY accurate

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

  9. DailyLlama

    It worries me...

    That I clearly read too many of these, and I fear I am turning into the BofH...

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: It worries me...


    2. theOtherJT Silver badge

      Re: It worries me...

      I like to think of it as a life goal.

    3. Mark 85

      Re: It worries me...

      Congratulations then. The rewards are well worth the effort.

      1. Luiz Abdala

        Re: It worries me...

        You just need a whisky bottle stashed on a fake fire extinguisher to finish the process. And get Doom installed on any machine in the office.

        1. Giraffe67

          Re: It worries me...

          I'm confused, Doom has been installed on every computer in the school for years, is that wrong?

    4. FozzyBear

      Re: It worries me...

      Your training is almost complete then, Embrace the power of the dark side and join us!!!

  10. Chronos

    You know when you predict the ending in the first sentence...

    ...but it's still massively entertaining when you're right? That. Just one little hole:

    "Self driving vehicles?" The director burbles.

    "Already taken care of. Your Lexus is the test case and it's trundling down the road as we speak. Who knew it was as easy as painting double yellow lines and alerting a passing traffic warden?"

  11. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    "We have a substantial amount of resource already hosted in the cloud as it is,"

    Would that be a cloud not run by the usual suspects but by a small company with only one customer? And having very small latency because of it being on previously written-off servers in the DC?

  12. Fatman

    RE: "stack of ideas"

    <quote>"Well, I've given you a stack of ideas and you've shot down every one. How about YOU suggest something to bring this company out of the dark ages?!"</quote>

    BOFH: "Hand in your resignation, today!"

    Hey ElReg, why isn't there a `boot in the ass` icon?

  13. SVV

    Cole's Law

    Hmmm, this just sounds like a special case to me of the more general theory which jointly won the Nobel prize for professors Sod and Murphy. A BOFH should be well acquainted with their work, even though it is too difficult to understand for laymen such as management.

  14. Muscleguy

    In the field

    I have used a robot IRL* to good effect. It was a benchtop model and it sucked samples and reactant out of 2ml tubes (barcoded, it read barcodes) and aliquoted them in required amounts into 96 up to 386 well plates. You could aliquot your samples, seal the plates and keep them in the freezer for reactant aliquoting at a later date.

    It had a macro language programming interface with drag and drop routines or custom or customised routines which you could save. It was much more accurate than even a hand held motorised pipette so you got more consistent results.

    It was bought to handle population level samples from blood samples in a big study but the rest of us could also use it.

    I built a FileMaker relational database for the big project which handled barcodes and printed them in sheets for affixing to the tubes. It was still working just fine when I left the lab.

    *A working head which could pick up and discard pipette tips and move in X,Y and Z dimensions constrained by a frame. There was another one which took bundles of the plates and dipped them into different hot water pools for defined periods. A PCR robot using the original PCR method before the Peltier block killed the three water baths and a timer setup. But the specific heat capacity of water is hard to beat and the ramp times are steeper for the robot. A Back to the Future robot if you will.

    1. Shooter


      I was almost certain that was a misspelling of allocate. Then I thought "Nah, he's too smart for that".

      So I looked it up.

      You learn something new every day!

      1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

        Re: Aliquot

        yup, Gilson is also nnot a mispelling of Gibson, although one or two of those in the lab might make the day go quicker...

  15. Aladdin Sane

    "What about Internet of Things?"

    "That's what our users call eBay."


    1. Chris G

      Re: "What about Internet of Things?"

      This episode had more laughs than most while poking accurate fun at upper manglement.

      1. stiine Silver badge

        Re: "What about Internet of Things?"

        And your point is???

  16. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Parallel Travel into Other Times and Outer Spaces with AIMaster Piloting Control

    in Presumed Assumed Absolute Command*

    "Risk? What risk?"

    :-0) Spoken like a Native of the Genre. Bravo, El Reg ...... Welcome to the Asylum that Commends and Commands our Virtual Madness in Live Operational Virtual Environments.

    Some would tell you not to deny they are Heavenly Spaces for Such Follies are Insanities ‽ .

    And all of that would certainly really showcase the company's technical excellence.

    Can you imagine the reactions elsewhere?

    * .... :-) MOD would pay most generously to be able to provide program input into that as a Present Current Unfolding Augmented Virtual Reality Show for Virtually Free Global Information Broad Band Casting. And as an Open Secret , easily Policed and Peer Reviewed for Evidence of the Appearance of Malfeasance in any Unseemly Set Courses of Action .... delivering clashes in either joust or jest with an AIs NEUKlearer HyperRadioProACTive IT Facilities and Utilities from a Virtually Almighty Immaculate Space Place.

    There's a lot to consider there, El Reg, and none of it is bad ........ therefore everything is good ... which is great too. If that aint Win Win, it would be Most Surprising.

  17. Alistair

    Ahh gotta love it when the

    Buzzword bingo bullshit baffling bastards band together in the board room.

    This is very appropos use of the robot Simon.

  18. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge

    And there goes

    another keyboard

    Oh well off to get another...... chop chop

    1. stiine Silver badge

      Re: And there goes

      If you don't already know not to drink sugary liquids whilst read BOFH...

      1. Stoneshop

        Re: And there goes

        Or, if you won't stop ...

  19. karlnapf

    My Boss asking me for shiny new hightech we are using?

    Feeling like this two guys:

  20. Mr Sceptical

    Hurr Hurr Hurr

    Bravo Simon, perfect end to the week!

    This as well --->

  21. imanidiot Silver badge

    I should know better by now

    Drinking tea and reading BOFH doesn't mix. Another classic this one!

  22. chivo243 Silver badge

    "You can't make an omelette without breaking a few eggs!"

    Just like the Directors eggshell head! Mr. Know-it-all pffft. Second liar doesn't stand a chance in that room! Once again, if you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit!

    I wish my meetings went as smoothly!

    Thanks Simon!

    1. Black Betty

      Re: "You can't make an omelette without breaking a few eggs!"

      More like batter them with fire axes.

      1. Psmo

        Re: "You can't make an omelette without breaking a few eggs!"

        You could also batter them with eggs.

        Just to keep our metaphors scrambled.

  23. Claptrap314 Silver badge

    Just last time

    I was thinking about the robot in the basement. Excellent timing!

  24. cob2018

    This is why I don't drink when using the computer

    This is the Bastard that we all know and love. So glad to see him back in full form, especially in this ridiculous age of "non-offensive" nonsense.

    BRAVO !!!

  25. bpfh

    Oh Hell Yes!

    The battle bot is back!

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Would love to do that

    I've got a Director that is a complete wanker. I would love to do this to him. It is actually a goal of mine to get him fired this year. Posting anonymously for obvious reasons.

    1. My-Handle

      Re: Would love to do that

      The BOFH's got you covered there as well. Just ensure that you "find" a folder on his computer with one or all of the three Ps in it :)

  27. Andytug

    "Wind shear in the cloud"

    I am definitely going to try and shoe horn that one into a meeting at some point.....just to see if anyone notices!

    A true coffee/keyboard interface moment!

    1. TRT Silver badge

      Re: "Wind shear in the cloud"

      Given the state of the State of California at the moment...

  28. FeRDNYC

    Robot playing a power axe? Think I saw that at Coachella!

    He was no Jimi Hendrix, but then again neither is Jimi Hendrix these days.

  29. earl grey

    Many thanks

    Many laughs (as an old retired fart).

  30. Unicornpiss

    "Cole's Law"

    That is brilliant. I may have to use that one.

  31. Roxor

    At the mention of a robot, I expected the PFY to back away having flashbacks of the exchange with the robotics company. Really wasn't expecting the even older battle-bot to make a reappearance. Can't object to its usage, though. Then again, probably the only people who would are the type who would need it sent after them.

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