I heart Lisa Computers
This is my computer.
There are many like it,
but this one is mine.
My computer is my best friend.
It is my life.
I must master it, as I must master my life.
Without me, my computer is useless.
Without my computer, I am useless.
I must use my computer true.
I must compute faster than my enemy who is trying to kill me.
I must outcompute him before he outcomputes me.
Before God, I swear this creed.
My computer and myself are defenders of this country.
We are the masters of our enemy.
We are the saviours of my life.
So be it until there is no enemy,
Douglas Coupland's Microserfs, besides being a
beautiful and incredibly accurate portrayal of "geek culture" that every Everythingian should read, is beloved
for interspersing the story with pages full of seemingly random words and phrases ("FORTRAN... Safeway... SkyTel Paging... I am an empath... IKEA"). Pages 104-105, however, contain nothing but 1's and 0's; binary code. When I first read the book in 1995 I wrote it off as noise, but some geek cleverer than I decided to OCR it and convert it to 7-bit ASCII. The text above was the result.
This poem is an adaptation of the poem "My Rifle" by Major General William H. Rupertus, USMC, famously repeated by the Marines during bootcamp in the movie Full Metal Jacket. Substituting the word "computer" for "rifle" highlights the way computers have become as essential to the digerati and a rifle is to a soldier.
Douglas Coupland was schooled as a graphic artist (actually, a sculpter), and the formating in this writeup is my attempt to match his style in Microserfs, with words italicized or written in larger fonts and justified in alternating directions to keep things visually interesting.