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Technological Difficulties

The Editor writes:

Messages pouring in overnight via the worldwide interweb messaging portal, bear testimony to the widespread disappointment felt by many at the non-appearance of yesterday's scheduled communication. It is a feeling shared by all of us here, tasked as we are to bring up-to-the-minute content to a dispirited and demoralised self-isolating, socially-distanced, locked-down public, for whom communication of any sort in these troubled times is a balm and a benediction. A word of apology and of explanation may, therefore, be in order.

Such is the consummate skill with which news, articles and a regular diet of fascinating stories are processed and passed to our readers, that it would be easy to assume that these exemplary communications emanate from a large, well-staffed and well-resourced office typical of those which generally operate within the giant and frankly somewhat impersonal multi-national conglomerate that is the thrupieceorganisation / Threadbone Corporation. From such an assumption, there might also arise a suspicion of distant hauteur and even callous disregard for the feelings of our clients, customers and non-paying content-consumers. Nothing could be further from the truth. For all of us here, a day without a post is a day without meaning. On that point if no other, we can surely all agree.

ARSE: The machine responsible for the rendering of all communications from since the late 1970s.

Turning then to the proposed explanation for this unusual - nay unprecedented - hiatus in our normally well-ordered affairs, it should be noted that for many years, production of postings has depended upon the efforts of a small dedicated team [the Ed] clustered around what is referred to in journalistic and literary circles as a "word processor". Once at the cutting edge of technology [c1974] this machine [ARSE or Automated Random Sentence Engine] has served its purpose and served it well, although, as it has aged, it has become increasingly dependent upon a series of fixes, repairs and [more recently] "bodges" as parts have become worn, original spares have been exhausted and substitute replacement parts more difficult to source. On Monday 5th October, the only technician capable of keeping the machine in action - Mr Sol Dringiyrne - retired; a happy event in several respects [office hygiene being amongst the most immediate beneficiaries] though one which necessarily sounded the death-knell for our flagging ARSE. Lest it be misunderstood and for the avoidance of abuse aimed at both man and machine, it should be recorded that "neither owed us anything", having been cheap to run, pretty nearly silent on the complaints front and, broadly speaking, satisfactory in general terms. But, as the Bard memorably said: "Tempus fugit" or in the Thomas Bowdler rendering: "Age is a bugger and it f**ks us all over in the end".

Professor Thrupiece on one of his occasional visits to the office encourages a new recruit to make good use her ARSE.

Fortunately, the simultaneous demise of Sol and ARSE was, to a degree, anticipated and though Sol will not be replaced, securing a more powerful ARSE has been high on the forward planning agenda. Unhappily, the frustrating and frankly inexplicable popularity of JIT [Just in Time] supply-chains amongst the electronic device retailers together with a series of CONTRIK-69 measures designed to be as dis-buggerous* as possible, seriously frustrated our efforts to ensure a smooth transition from old to new, with the result that ARSE's de-commissioning did not coincide as precisely as we would have liked with the arrival and installation of its shiny new replacement - a very smart contraption with a separate keyboard, screen and something called a "mouse".

* a favourite phrase of Professor Thrupiece's as in "Don't be so disbuggerous and pass me the sterilised fluff".

PISS-FLAPS: The Office's new state-of-the-art word processor is good to go.

Readers are, therefore, assured that yesterday's interruption is unlikely to be repeated and they should take collective comfort in the fact that once we have come to grips with the intricacies of our new PISS-FLAPS [Partially Integrated Semi-Secure [and] Fast Locally Activated Production Server] the daily flow of verbose nonsense will be properly assured [though not quality assured - a different concept for another day]. [Make a note of that - we'll run one on QA when news is slack [Ed]]

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