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posted by chromas on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:20AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the weekend-chuckle dept.

Last September, I asked the SoylentNews community for help in choosing an UHD (Ultra High Definition) 4K television to use as a computer monitor. I was amazed at all the helpful and informative replies! I'm please to report that I got a TCL Roku 43S515 on sale at Best Buy and it has been working great! I so enjoy having more pixels to arrange even more info on my screen.

But something funny happened a couple days ago. I powered up the TV using the remote as I would normally do. Then I selected the input coming from my laptop, again as I usually do. And then, for a few moments, I saw a message displayed at the bottom of my screen:

Hamster wheel engaged

After I stopped laughing, I wondered if I had inadvertently stumbled upon an Easter Egg. What other messages, if any, lurked in my TV?

It seems the developers at Roku have a sense of humor. Some searching around the web (Roku's forum (all 4 pages) as well as on Amazon forum) revealed quite a few messages. I've gathered them here in alphabetical order:

Aligning Solar Panels
Boosting entertainment channels
Engaging warp drive
Hamster wheel engaged
Installing solar panels
Maximizing Fun Factor
Opening the gateway
Opening Stream Gates
Releasing the stream
Supercharging your system
Tuning Hyperdrive

What strange, silly, or whimsical messages have you seen?


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  • (Score: 3, Informative) by Gaaark on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:25AM (1 child)

    by Gaaark (41) on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:25AM (#822223) Journal

    Reminds me of Kerbal Space Program with it's funny loading messages.

    --
    --- Please remind me if I haven't been civil to you: I'm channeling MDC. ---Gaaark 2.0 ---
    • (Score: 2) by richtopia on Saturday March 30 2019, @05:41PM

      by richtopia (3160) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 30 2019, @05:41PM (#822417) Homepage Journal

      Reticulating splines is a classic. I'm not sure if KSP has it, but I know the phrase has been used beyond the original Sim City 2000.

  • (Score: 2) by Whoever on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:25AM

    by Whoever (4524) on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:25AM (#822224) Journal

    Two of them just gave a bland message. The other one gave me "Maximizing fun factor" the first time, then the bland message.

  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:51AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:51AM (#822232)

    The Linux kernel has some odd ones. The one that most people would see is probably "yama becoming mindful" or the error when it doesn't load. I remember an article I read years ago, which I think was on LWN, where they talked about the different messages. One of the developers said they use oddly phrased messages so they stick out and are only really only meant for those who know what they are doing. Plus, they have the benefit of if someone running into them who shouldn't, they are basically forced to look it up, which cuts down on the support time for the team because they can easily weed out people who haven't even taken the basic steps.

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by sjames on Saturday March 30 2019, @07:52AM

      by sjames (2882) on Saturday March 30 2019, @07:52AM (#822261) Journal

      I always liked "lp0 is on fire".

      The ASCII art of the Hitchhiker's Guide in the oops message from the Sparc port of Linux was also good.

  • (Score: 3, Funny) by f4r on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:56AM (3 children)

    by f4r (4515) on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:56AM (#822234)
    Our in-house steel-tracking software has "Installing North African Roborovski hamster" as a quick message in the startup splash. I never understood why they had to be so specific with the species. It's strange since they don't seem to be native to anywhere near Africa.
    --
    Do not use as directed.
    • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Saturday March 30 2019, @09:04AM (2 children)

      by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 30 2019, @09:04AM (#822272) Journal

      If memory serves me well, this species used to be widespread in N Africa, but it seems that they have been part of the illegal wild hamster trade and are now nearing extinction. Apparently, they are much in demand by software developers.....

      --
      It's always my fault...
      • (Score: 3, Funny) by driverless on Sunday March 31 2019, @07:42AM (1 child)

        by driverless (4770) on Sunday March 31 2019, @07:42AM (#822663)

        They aren't even native to there, originally they were Siberian Hamsters that were introduced by Russian settlers fleeing persecution during Stalin's Borscht Purge in the 1930s.

        • (Score: 2) by gawdonblue on Monday April 01 2019, @03:34AM

          by gawdonblue (412) on Monday April 01 2019, @03:34AM (#822958)

          Well, let's have a little Basil hunt, shall we? And then we'll deal with the sackings later on.

          --
          My Phone, My Choice
  • (Score: 5, Touché) by lentilla on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:57AM (7 children)

    by lentilla (1770) on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:57AM (#822235)

    I confess that; back in the day; I was fond of messing with people's unattended desktops. It was the work of a few moments: Alt+PrtScn, Win+R, mspaint, enter, Ctrl+V, F11 and they would return to a fake desktop and they would sit there clicking uselessly at a picture of their desktop.

    I also rather liked the now ancient "Water detected on drive C".

    I doubt I would engage in those kind of shenanigans today. Partly to do with age but probably more because we live in a different; less innocent; era. A couple of decades ago "we have taken your files hostage!" would have been funny. Today it is a sad reality.

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by coolgopher on Saturday March 30 2019, @06:09AM

      by coolgopher (1157) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 30 2019, @06:09AM (#822245)

      The version of that prank we used was to printscreen, paste into mspaint, save, set desktop background to saved screenshot, then move all the actual desktop icons off the desktop...

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by hemocyanin on Saturday March 30 2019, @06:16AM (1 child)

      by hemocyanin (186) on Saturday March 30 2019, @06:16AM (#822247) Journal

      Did that. To my boss.

      • (Score: 2) by Some call me Tim on Saturday March 30 2019, @06:41AM

        by Some call me Tim (5819) on Saturday March 30 2019, @06:41AM (#822248)

        Boss pranks are the best! Well done!

        --
        Covid mRNA shot Control Group member. Enjoy your short life long side effects, the rest of us will inherit the earth.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @06:41AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @06:41AM (#822249)

      I took a screenshot, put it in correl and deformed it, and then put it as the background...
      and I once switched my brother's display to mirrored.

    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @02:42PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @02:42PM (#822357)

      Invert the screen with Ctrl Alt Down if it has nvidia drivers :)

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by mcgrew on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:49PM

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Saturday March 30 2019, @04:49PM (#822403) Homepage Journal

      W98 had the "It's OK to shut off your computer". I changed it to "It's not OK to shut off your computer.

      I had a boss named Dave. I thought about changing all the windows sounds to HAL brom 2001, like "I'm sorry, Dave, I can;t let you do that". It never got farther than thinking about, though.

      --
      Free Martian whores! [mcgrewbooks.com]
    • (Score: 1) by DECbot on Saturday March 30 2019, @06:12PM

      by DECbot (832) on Saturday March 30 2019, @06:12PM (#822431) Journal

      I've used the on screen controls of my colleague's monitor to rotate the screen 90 or 180 degrees (multiple instances) and then switched the controls language to Russian or Japanese. I think he's finally resorted to just rotating the desktop in Windows to get back to the correct orientation because he can't be bothered to figure out changing the language back into something he can read.

      --
      cats~$ sudo chown -R us /home/base
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by epitaxial on Saturday March 30 2019, @05:48AM

    by epitaxial (3165) on Saturday March 30 2019, @05:48AM (#822242)

    One special model of Apex DVD player (AD-600A) had a hidden menu you could get to by pressing a few buttons on the remote. The menu said "you should not be here". Oh but being there was great. You could disable MacroVision and other features and even set the region code to whatever you wanted.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @12:18PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @12:18PM (#822315)

    Long ago, friends lived in a warehouse space, the clothes dryer had two settings:
                Normal and Lemur Abuse

  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Roo_Boy on Saturday March 30 2019, @01:13PM (1 child)

    by Roo_Boy (1762) on Saturday March 30 2019, @01:13PM (#822326)

    At work I have a few cron jobs to transfer data between systems. If it runs but there was nothing to transfer it emails an "excuse" based off the list in the BOFH excuse generator. Makes checking of all the housekeeping jobs somewhat entertaining.

    --
    --- The S.I. prototype "Average Punter" is kept in a tube of inert gas in Geneva.
    • (Score: 0, Troll) by Ethanol-fueled on Saturday March 30 2019, @03:33PM

      by Ethanol-fueled (2792) on Saturday March 30 2019, @03:33PM (#822382) Homepage

      I have a Samsung smart TV that says,"please dont steal me, Tyrone" whenever you say "muthafucka" around it.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Rich on Saturday March 30 2019, @01:28PM (2 children)

    by Rich (945) on Saturday March 30 2019, @01:28PM (#822331) Journal

    A while ago, I was porting embedded firmware from (Microware) OS/9 to (Microblaze, unrelated) Linux for a customer. Reports came in that about once in every two operating weeks, the machine would freeze, but in many cases would also resume operation after a few minutes. From looking at the logs of a controlling PC, I could figure out that the embedded board was completely passive during the freeze. We did have hardware access into the embedded controller, and I extended the Linux kernel debugger with a few commands to dump state, but none of the testers was remotely capable of operating a debugger or even an ICE. So I wrote a small utility to ping the machine that, once the response died, would play an 8-bit LoFi rendering of Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries". The testers were sternly advised to immediately call someone from the hardware department if that happened. For two weeks, nothing happened, but then, one morning I got rung out and greeted with the words:

    "The music has played."

    I scrambled, headed to the site, saw the frozen machine in debugging state, could somehow deduce that the issue was caused by a bug where an overflow of the Kernel's tick timer for the architecture might stall the scheduler, and fixed it. A single Kernel release newer than ours (around 3.13), the faulty code was rewritten upstream, also without the bug, but we hadn't tried that, because it broke other places.

    I can't remember how I came up with 8-bit Wagner; I guess I wanted some clearly unique signal that stood out in the middle of beeps, bleeps, and other distractions in the environment.

    • (Score: 2) by driverless on Sunday March 31 2019, @07:45AM (1 child)

      by driverless (4770) on Sunday March 31 2019, @07:45AM (#822664)

      I can't remember how I came up with 8-bit Wagner

      Because Wagner, more than most other opera, typically involves a fat lady singing?

      • (Score: 2) by Rich on Sunday March 31 2019, @02:00PM

        by Rich (945) on Sunday March 31 2019, @02:00PM (#822714) Journal

        fat lady singing?

        Now that I think of it, she (or rather her corporate owners) would want royalties (therefore the 8-bit version). As would the owners of more modern score. This was in a corporate environment, I needed something that was royalty free, so I could copy it onto the customer's computer and stay clean license-wise. Also, the "ride" goes through the octaves with a 9/8 beat (effectively 3/4 with every beat broken down in 6 16ths). I must have assumed this would stand out not only by covering the frequency spectrum, but also with a rhythm that runs against that of machinery chugging along.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @03:12PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @03:12PM (#822372)

    Just

    echo "fortune -s" >> ~/.bashrc

    for the lulz when you pop open a terminal. (Shows you short funny adages.)

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @05:45PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @05:45PM (#822421)

    Mine just says:
    They're all against you, they all must DIE.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @09:03PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @09:03PM (#822469)

    every 10 months or so, plus or minus a few, my iPAD will quickly auto type the 4 digit start-screen code by itself when I open the cover - it's always unsettling when machines are not perfectly consistent

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @09:12PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 30 2019, @09:12PM (#822473)

    If my memory is correct, in the 80's I found a boot-up key combination on the Atari 600xl that let me copy a borrowed cartridge copy of a Star Trek game to cassette tape

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by linkdude64 on Sunday March 31 2019, @12:35PM

    by linkdude64 (5482) Subscriber Badge on Sunday March 31 2019, @12:35PM (#822701)

    N/A

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