An experiment I conducted at age 13, drunk on my mastery of the box in the basement and hungry to display my supremacy I was encouraging my own friends in computer-equipped households to make themselves learned regarding the capabilities and potentials of the hardware, partially from a practical reason and partially because your ignorance could be used against you in a most mortifying way:

"So, what kind of processor does it have?"

    "I think it's a 386."
"How much RAM?"
    "Hold on, I'll ask my dad...(tromp tromp tromp)
    (tromp tromp tromp)
    ... four megs!"
"What kind of display?"
"How many colours does it show? More than 16?"
    "Yeah. Well, I think so."
"Okay, then it's probably VGA. Does it have a CD-ROM?"
    "Hold on, I'll ask... (tromp tromp tromp)
    (tromp tromp tromp)
"What operating system are you using?"
    "Oh, I know that one. Windows!"
(snort) "Okay. What kind of sound card does it have?"
    "Hold on, I'll see if my dad knows again... (tromp tromp tromp)
    (tromp tromp tromp)
    A Sound Blaster Pro!"
"Ooh... ... does it have a monkey fondulator drive in it?"
    "A what?!"
"(ahem) Does your computer come equipped with a monkey fondulator drive?"
    "I don't know. I'll go ask my dad. ...(tromp tromp tromp)

    ... (tromp tromp tromp)
    You bastard!"

Some time later, when he ran our first dialup BBS, under the system statistics he noted that the computer the bulletin board ran off of featured, among other things, a monkey fondulator drive. The victim was a good sport and made fun of the fun I had got at his expense. Them was the days... that brand of ignorance is too endemic and too commonplace to remain entertaining anymore, and I like to think that I've matured a bit in any event.

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