Microsoft's IE8 browser treats disorders you didn't know you had

Posted on Wed Jun 10 2009

You know that feeling you get that you're missing something on the Internet? If you could visualize it, it would look a lot like a pudgy Indian guy in a silver unitard. This mock PSA for Microsoft's Internet Explorer 8 browser warns that the condition known as F.O.M.S. ("Fear of Missing Something"), if left unchecked, can lead to bizarre, hallucinatory confrontations with just such a person, whose idea of a taunt is, "Oh no! You lost a bidding war on a decorative bowl!" A second parody introduces another disorder, S.H.Y.N.E.S.S. ("Sharing Heavily Yet Not Enough Sharing Still"), which the new browser can also treat. It shows a zaftig lady obsessed with forwarding LOLcat pics (every office has a woman like this), and is pretty realistic in depicting how such e-mails are received. "I hate you, Mary," says the recipient. Indiana agency Bradley and Montgomery did the spots. They also star Dean Cain, who displays Airplane-esque deadpanning ability. Who knew he was funny? Who knew Microsoft was funny?

—Posted by Todd Wasserman

Microsoft looks back fondly at that absurd creation, the Internet

Posted on Mon Mar 23 2009

It's (mock) official: Al Gore lied. In this video, comedian Dave Hill details how the Internet really came to be. "My friend Tommy puked, and puke came out of his nose, and I took this awesome picture," he recalls fondly in the ad. But how would he show everyone? "It was like—boom!—the Internet. So, I invented the Internet."
  The five-minute short-form doc, "Remembering Stuff About the Internet," was created for the Windows Internet Explorer 8 debut at Microsoft's MIX09 developer conference in Las Vegas last week. In it, various entertainment types walk us through the evolution of the Internet in classy-Ken-Burns meets shoddy-VH1 docu-style. Through their Web memories, we revisit various epochs such as The Dial-up Years with their screeching modems, the "Caviar. Llamas. Pants" period of buying stuff online, the viral videos of Contagious Content, and the social networking phenom "Friend Me?, Poke You;)".
  Janeane Garofalo, the "Ask a Ninja" ninja and a Harvard professor ponder such things as dancing hamsters and the meaning of a medium with "4 million people writing poetry and 14 people reading poetry." Just about everyone but former Sen. Ted Stevens tries to explain the Interweb's inner workings using those tried-and-true "tubes," "levers," "magic," "string," "dragons" and "kittens eating yogurt" metaphors. Of course, the final chapter suggests, "It's just going to get awesomer from here," and flogs IE8's new InPrivate Browsing mode. But won't that just make people paranoid that people can spy all the porn and debt they're accruing now on IE7? The ad was created by Bradley and Montgomery, the agency that created the Mojave Experiment for Microsoft.

—Posted by Becky Ebenkamp



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