Destructive Labs


Brian W. Antoine

January 16, 1993

"Shit! God damned piece of junk!" I yelled as the mouse slammed off the desk. "If I ever get my hands on the clown that designed that thing I'll turn him into a Newt!"

Off to one side of my den, the holotank that was busy running simulations froze for a moment. "Oh oh... Now what's wrong? You having problems with your PC again?"

"Yup," I said in disgust. "Here, see what you make of this," and I reached over to the mixing console and threw a switch. With the poor abused mouse, I restarted the playback of the latest piece I'd been working on. From the speakers attached to my PC, a low crackle began to be heard.

"Hummm.... Is it suppose to be background static from a radio or have you tied into a radio telescope again?"

"That's the problem! I had all the input's shutoff! That noise is being generated by the card itself. How am I suppose to add the soundtrack to this animation I'm doing with that crap present in the signal." The soundbite finished playing and the speakers went quite once again. "That card is worthless for any serious work. If Jeff doesn't get my that GUS card soon, I'm gonna go nuts."

"Short trip... <snicker>"

"Huh? What did you say?"

"I said its a short trip to Jeff's place. Look, why won't you let me help you?"

"Because, I want to do this myself and I don't think I could dumb you down to the point where it would look like the work had been done on a PC. No, this is between me and this stupid machine. I want to animate the scene where I fired the solar laser at the moon. I talked to Bob, and he agreed that it would make one hell of a short animated flick."

"Pardon me if I don't get too interested in that particular bit of history. I'd just as soon forget it, if it was possible. I'm still finding small bits of damaged memory records where that SOB blundered around in my mind."

"Sorry about that. Anyway, there is one thing you can help me with." I turned around and began to rummage around on my desk.

"Oh, and what might that be?"

My desk was a mess as usual. "Now where is that damned card... Ah, here we go." I had found the warranty card for the audio board I was using. "Here, call up the link-virus we designed and place a call to this number." Turning back around to my computer, I fired up the H-link to Penny and entered the phone number for the Creative Labs BBS system.

"Link open," and a new window opened on the screen.

"I still like the way that Logo turned out." I switched to another window and fired the raytracer up again. "I might as well start on the next frame, let me know when your into their network."


In the corner, the holotank began another simulation run and I could hear Penny humming to herself as she attempted to gain access to the computer systems at Creative Labs. On the screen in front of me, the next frame of the animation I was working on began to appear. If I ever got this to look the way I wanted, it was going to be something to be proud of.

"Ok boss, I'm in. The even made it easy for me, they used a Novell lan for their network. What did you want to do?"

"See if you can locate the machine that they use to cut their release disk sets from. I want to make a few alterations to the next batch of software they send out." I chuckled to myself, this was going to cause quite a riot when it got out.

"Hummm... Source files... This must be the secretary's system... More source... Ah, here we go. I think I found it. They have a machine with some mass duplicator software installed and a set of directories that hold disk images. What next?"

"See if you can pick out the audio files that go with a program called SBAITSO2 and PARROT. I want to make a few custom alterations to the files they ship."

"Oh oh... I can see where this is headed. <snicker>"

I fired up the recorder on the PC and began to sample in the new versions of the sounds I wanted to change. I turned the mixer down low, I wanted the noise to be as loud as it could get. These samples had to sound TERRIBLE!

"Ok, I've found the sampled audio files for those programs and I heard that last thing you recorded. You can't be serious!"

"Very, now here's the first file. Insert it into SBAITSO2 in place of the sample used when you cuss at the doctor." The file being inserted would change the phrase 'Please don't use that kind of language' to 'Stop being so anal-retentive dipshit!'.

"The second file goes into the PARROT program. Replace the sample that gets played when the program doesn't detect any input for awhile." This file would change the phrase 'Did you say something?' to 'Polly wants a piece-of-ass NOW!'.

"And last but not least, when the PARROT exits insert this sample." This one would change 'Good-bye' into 'About damned time. Now go buy a better sound card!'.

A few minutes when by before I heard from Penny again. "Ok, they're inserted. I had to shuffle things around a little because the new files were bigger then the originals."

"Just so they go out. Now back out of their network and cleanup behind you. When you get a chance, call up the switching computer at US West and wipe all traces of the call also. They shouldn't be able to backtrack it, but why take the chance."

"Ok, will do."

I sat back in my chair and watched the frame being created on the screen. The more I thought about the chaos about to hit, the better I felt. I might have gotten screwed by their hardware department, but their management was going to be awful busy shortly. Next time they just might take customer complaints a bit more seriously.

After all... I could have always sent BatSmurf or the Smurf Rangers to teach them the evils of screwing with a Wizard. <snicker>