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Notes from the field: Okie calls cops, Dell's Ditty flops

Notes from the field: Okie calls cops, Dell's Ditty flops

It seems the joke's on us. Apple's 30th birthday passed without fanfare - no 4-inch video iPod, iTunes movie service or music-enabled iPhone was unveiled. And technical difficulties may delay the Apple handset (http://thinksecret.com/news/0603iphone.html) until next year. Maybe Apple's getting mellow in its old age.

The Right Tool for the Job: Tuttle, Oklahoma (population 4294), calls itself The Place Where People Grow - Friendly! Not too friendly, apparently, because city manager, Jerry Taylor, almost called the Feds on an innocent Linux distributor. It started when Taylor tried to view cityoftuttle.org and encountered an Apache error page (http://mirror.centos.org/mirrorscripts/noindex_new.html). He assumed the site was under attack and fired off an email to the Webmaster at CentOS, the Linux-based operating system (http://www.centos.org/modules/news/article.php?storyid=127) that is used by the city's Web host. CentOS developer, Johnny Hughes, explained the error was caused by a misconfigured server, but Taylor thought this was just a clever ruse by fiendish hackers and threatened to call the FBI. Many unintentionally hilarious emails ensued, which Hughes posted to the Web (http://infoworld.com/4025), making Taylor an international celebrity. The unrepentant Taylor (http://home.swbell.net/the-griz/drjerry.jpg) still believes his valiant actions saved the day. He also believes Martians are living in his coffee mug.

DooWah Ditty: Cringester, Dannie M, is singing a sad song after Dell declined to replace his $US99 DJ Ditty MP3 player, because he returned the dead Ditty a few days after its 90-day warranty expired. Judging by the volume of complaints on Dell's support forums (http://forums.us.dell.com/supportforums/board/message?board.id=djditty&message.id=603), he's not alone. Dell's response? "At this time, we are not seeing issues with the DJ Ditty in the way you have described." Reason No. 346 why Steve Jobs isn't losing sleep over Dell.

I'm Feeling Lucky: Recently, Google accidentally misplaced its own blog, allowing a 19-year-old college student to borrow it (http://blogs.siliconvalley.com/.shared/image.html?/photos/uncategorized/googledumbass.jpg) for an hour. Oops. Now it's hoping Netizens will lose their hearts to Google Romance, its new "contextual dating" service (also known as Google's annual April Fools' joke). Even I didn't fall for that one, and I'm desperate. I must be mellowing, too.

Send hot tips or funny practical jokes to cringe@infoworld.com, and you may get a foolish yellow bag in return.


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