GBU

Good

Sysadmin gets a wireless-enabled handheld computer with lots of cool features. "I find out how to use a voice recording as the alert tone when I'm paged, and record a message that says, 'Wake up, @#$*% when I'm paged by the servers," he reports. "I promptly forget about it. Until I'm in a meeting. And get paged." Red-faced sysadmin can only mumble, "My server is paging me" -- and beat a hasty retreat.

My PC says "boot device failure" when I start it, remote user tells IT. "I asked the user to find and send me the service tag of the machine," IT says. "That is, to e-mail me the number. A few days went by and I hadn't heard a thing. Then the mail arrived: Sure enough, in an overnight FedEx envelope was the physical tag peeled from the system, sent right to me!"

Bad

Developer team is working on a large financial system, so they decide to do a use-case study. "The idea was that users could give us the inside scoop on what they're inputting and what it means," IT reports. "We went to our first user and asked him to explain the screen to us. He said, 'Look. I take this number here on this paper and type it into the little box on this screen.' What is the number used for? we asked. 'Like I said, I take this number from this paper . . .' "

Ugly

Twenty people were arrested last week on charges of illegally shipping controlled substances, including narcotics and anabolic steroids, to people around the world, according to a statement by the US Drug Enforcement Administration. Dubbed Operation Cyber Chase, the investigation targeted international Internet pharmaceutical traffickers across the globe. Using more than 200 Web sites, the drug traffickers allegedly shipped controlled substances such as amphetamines directly to buyers of all ages. "For too long, the Internet has been an open medicine cabinet with cyber drug dealers illegally doling out a vast array of narcotics, amphetamines and steroids," DEA administrator Karen Tandy said. Criminal indictments against those arrested contain charges seeking forfeiture of 41 bank accounts valued at more than $6 million.

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