A man from Augher has applied for an advanced software engineering degree at Queen’s University in Belfast after having learned how to ‘cut and paste’ on a basic computer skills course at Dungannon Public Library.
“There’s no stopping me now, boys!” said an enthusiastic Hugh McSorley, 23, an unemployed decorator from outside the village. “I’ve been on the ‘Understanding My Computer’ course at the library every Wednesday morning for three weeks and I kid you not it’s taught me a lock of things. This cuttin and pasting is amazing. I thought I already knew about pasting because I’m a decorator by trade. But nope, instead of typing out all the words and sentences and stuff you just move the mouse yoke over the bit you want to copy, press a few buttons, and that’s the job done. You might think it sounds complicated, and it is. Very”.
The intensive 3-year course at the Belfast University covers software construction, theory and algorithms, functional programming, and systems architecture. McSorley so far has also learned how to save a document, how to print, and how to use the Caps Lock. “If you want to learn how to put something from wee letters into thon big letters, come and talk to me. You won’t believe your eyes”, exclaimed McSorley.
“We’re keen to encourage people’s passion, but we’re really not sure he’s ready” said an un-named source at Dungannon Library. “Last Wednesday we were teaching the class how to access the Task Manager and Hugh said that pressing ‘Ctrl Alt Delete’ at the same time was “feckin’ impossible” and that holding down three keys at once was “ridiculous unless you’re a buckin’ six-fingered freak”. He also spent an entire afternoon copying and pasting the phrase ‘deadly wemen’ onto 50 pages on a Word document, and then pressed the print button. And he usually starts sniggering every time we talk about ‘inserting an item or ‘increasing the size of a column’. He’s really quite disruptive”.
McSorley is adamant he has the skills already to survive at Queen’s:
“Listen”, said an aggressive McSorley, “What do I want with a task manager? I’ve a wee piece of paper here with all the tasks I need to manage. Look: ‘Sign on. Buy mince. Watch Loose Women. Register for computer course’. Task manager my arse. As soon as I get my degree I’m going to write a programme for space ships that will let them go into hyperspace and get to other planets really fast. I already know all about hyperlinks, so I’m halfway there. Name one other man or woman from Augher who can do what I do? Them Clogher ones still think a PC drives a Landrover”.
This coming Wednesday the library course will cover how to change words into italics.
Bonfires blazed well into the night in Caledon as news spread regarding the purchase of a computer by someone near the Iron Bridge. The little plantation village, which is still inhabited by some of the Pictish tribe from northern Scotland, had until now resisted all forms of modern communication including mobile phones, electric showers and kettles.
Recently, though, tribe leader Cecil McCreight expressed fears that Caledon might be wiped off the face of the earth if they didn’t promote it or even make people aware of its existence, especially those “middle-class fcukers” in Dungannon and Armagh.
“Yea, it was a tough decision but the majority of the tribe as well as a few natives agreed that it was time to buy a computer. Sometimes I head into Clogher or Dungannon (spit) and I’d say to people on the streets ‘hi I’m Chief McCreight from Caledon’ and all I’d get is a blank face or sometimes a punch in the bake. It’s time to put Caledon on the map.”
Thousands descended on the home of the person near the Iron Bridge as the delivery van arrived shortly after noon, the first such vehicle to drive through Caledon safely. Previous transport companies had lost fleets of lorries by taking a wrong turn through the village only to be torched and destroyed by the suspicious locals. Local juggler Barney Norris told us:
“Jaysus I’m deadly excited about this. I’d heard that you can see bare women from all over the world. I’ve never seen a bare woman before apart from the streaker at the Caledon Heathen Carnival in 1988. She was my aunt so I sorta didn’t look.”
Excitement levels are expected to reach a crescendo today when someone works out how to turn it on.