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[humorix] Archeaologists Unearth "Ooga!" Document

Archeaologists Unearth "Ooga!" Document
Written by Dave Finton (dfinton@d.umn.edu)
November 12, 1998

It was made public today that a 30,000 year old stone
tablet titled the "Ooga!" Document had been unearthed along
with many other stone tablets from the same era. The Ooga!
Document outlines the plans of the then-powerful
corporation known as MoogaSooga (to be referred in this
article as MS) to challenge and undermine the then-growing
hobbyist wheel-making industry.  MS at that time owned a
virtual monopoly on wheel production, and consumers of that
era were clamoring for alternatives to the MS Wheel.

The stone tablet was leaked to one such wheel-making
hobbyist referred to as "Eega S. Rooga", or ESR for short. 
The tablet outlines and researches a wheel-making method
where wheel-makers share ideas and contribute their work to
make better wheels, and create better tools from those
wheels.  The tablet also outlines possible actions that MS
could take against the wheel-making hobbyists in order to
maintain its market share.

The document, authored by MS employee and wheel expert
Vooga Voogavoogavoogavooga, talks about the process by how
these new wheels were made, and how much better the
hobbyists' wheels were than MS's own commercial wheel.

The MS Wheel was a large unwieldly structure approximately
30 feet tall.  Users of the wheel would have to climb on
top of the wheel and have 75 people behind him or her push
the wheel down the hill.  The MS Wheel was prone to
stalling in mid-transit, causing the passenger to be flung
off the top of the wheel to his death on the ground below. 
In worst case scenarios the MS Wheels were also known to
veer off course, often into crowded villages where everyone
in the wheel's path would be run down, causing a lot of
damage and heartache.  In addition to all this the wheel
would often break apart into several pieces whenever it hit
even the slightest bump.  Of course once the wheel reached
a valley or the bottom of the hill, it would be impossible
to push it back up the hill again because it was way too
heavy.  Thus, users of the MS Wheel were often forced to
"upgrade" to a new wheel, most likely even larger and less
stable than the previous one.

Despite these and other problems, the MS Wheel was
immensely popular. However, it sparked a populist movement
by amature wheel makers to share ideas and come up with a
better solution.

In the "Ooga!" Tablet, Vooga says, "After trying out these
hobbyists' wheels, I am surprised to learn that their
quality surpasses the quality of commercial-grade wheels,
particularly the MS Wheel."  He goes on to say, "These
wheels are only a couple of feet in diameter, weigh only 30
pounds, and are much sturdier than our heavyweight
counterparts.  Even worse, the hobbyists are using these
wheels to create even more complicated yet useful
structures, such as carts and wagons.  Our wheels couldn't
even hope to compete in that market!"

In one of the other stone tablets found during the dig, a
pundit and long-time MS supporter named Jooba Berst wrote
down "These new wheels will never be taken seriously in the
marketplace.  Who are you going to sue or hold accountable
when the wheel breaks down and kills several hundred

Vooga himself refuted those claims within the "Ooga!"
Document itself: "Since these wheels are small, the chances
of them running over and killing helpless villagers are
extremely low.  In addition to this, the wheels are skinny
enough to allow what is known as 'steering' to avoid
veering off course to begin with.  And in the unlikely
possibility of a wheel breakdown, the wheel can be easily
fixed or replaced with a new one relatively cheaply."

Since MS was a large and powerful corporation, surely it
must have had some kind of strategy against the hobbyist
wheel-makers.  Indeed, Vooga stated, "These hobbyists are
unabashedly cream-skinning the best features of MS Wheel,
such as the fact that it is round and is capable of rolling
down hills."  The solution?  "The possibilities of clubbing
the hobbyists to death or simply stealing their wheels have
yet to be looked at."


James S. Baughn

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