back to article BOFH: Axe handles - occasionally quite slippery

12:34:56am. Company Stores Wakeup trigger. . . 9 ... 8 ... 7 ... 6 ... 5 ... 4 ... 3 ... SELFTEST: OK 2 ... 1 Peripheral test ... USB Boot Media ... OK Panel ... OK Cameras ... Std:OK,Infra:OK,UV:OK 3D Directional Mic OK Hi Speed Steppers 1:OK,2:OK,3:OK,4:OK SERVOS 1:OK,2:OK,3:OK,4:OK Battery OK, level 67% Servo Saw OK …


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  1. ExRLCBod


    Its the return of BOT WARS!!

  2. Trygve Henriksen


    No, not the BOFH or PFY, but the guys sending the robot.

    It should have been made to look like a piece of expensive networking kit, then sent using a mistyped shipping address to the office. (It's not that difficult to set up a company with a similar-sounding name and easily mistaken address)

    Would the BOFH or PFY return a package with expensive kit if they could blame the loss on the shipper?

    And the receiving company actually calls around to ask if it showed up there instead?

    Also, there's a lot of room in some of the larger networking boxes...

    (Enough for a small robot, or possibly some Thermite... )

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      re: Amateurs!

      Maybe I am suspicious, but with the trigger word - I suspect the guy sending robot was there is person

      1. Trygve Henriksen

        You may be on to something...

        At no time in the past have the BOFH and PFY returned anything that could still contain that kind of data, so either there's another as of yet undetected device, or someone has been doing some oldfashioned spying.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Makes me pause and think back

          A while ago, we received a mystery package. It sat on a trolley for a couple of months, before I noticed it in our store-room. Several large, very heavy-duty aluminium boxes, sprouting masses of different sizes round military-grade multi-pin connectors. Sitting on shock-absorbing mountings too. I googled the manufacturers name, and found that it was a certain German company, making electronics for the military. I e-mailed the Germans, and they e-mailed back saying something along the lines of: "Oh gosh, thanks for notifying us, that thing is top secret and we have accidentally broken several laws regarding shipping of restricted technology, please keep the thing safe, and we'll arrange a pick-up very shortly."

          That was 6 months ago, and it is still sitting on a trolley in a corner of our store room.

          I believe it is a kind of inertial navigation system. Probably for a submarine. Wonder why they don't want it back?

          1. Yag

            come on...

            Just EBay the thing, I dare you.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward


              Haha, tempting. But I genuinely daren't do that. Are inertial navigation systems still top secret? Getting a bit mainstream now, aren't they?

              1. Trygve Henriksen

                The ones for Subs, yes...

                The accuracy needed to maneuver a sub in narrow straits or even a fjord is quite high, and the equipment for it is pretty advanced.

                Just mentioning that you have it sitting in a storeroom probably broke a few regs...

                (Even if you're anonymous. Someone at El Reg might be logging IPs... )

                Frankly, if I was you, I'd be calling the Navy about now.

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Good advice

                  Thanks for that. And I'm not TOO worried about being rumbled, I haven't actually done anything particularly wrong. I have to admit, I WAS tempted to pop the thing open and have a good look at the gubbins inside. I haven't done that though. What I have done is: I took several pictures of one of the junior engineers fumbeling with the various bits of kit, I recon that should be enough to keep the heat off me, if it all goes pear-shaped. And also: What country's navy should I alert? I live and work in the UK, but am not a native. The Germans failed to get in touch, Trygve; Would you like a bit of navy memorabilia?

  3. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge

    Really nice

    What will the revenge be?

  4. Craig Vaughton

    Lesson Learnt


    Lesson learnt? Read BOFH without food or drink in hand/mouth to avoid ruining another keyboard!

    Must be Friday as well. Cheers Simon.

  5. Asiren


    So, disconnected phone, they're trying to hide!

    First they've got to find them, and *then* make them sorry...

  6. Valerion

    Reminded me

    of the Polymorph in Red Dwarf where it could be anything - great stuff!

  7. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge


    Best BOFH in yonks :D

  8. Bill Gould

    What's this then?

    Looks a bit like continuity in the story line... Nice.

  9. Richard Jukes


    Quite a good BOFH, but lets be honest - just like bad sex, a bad bofh is still appreciated.

    1. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge

      Cannot resist asking

      which occurs more often?


      I'll get me coat

  10. Swedish Chef

    BOFH and PFY must be getting old

    Why take out the robot instead of watching it on CCTV doing its thing in the boss's office?

  11. Anonymous Coward

    Who could have known?

    I figured out the password early on. Not hard.

  12. Tony Barnes
    Thumb Up


    Awesome :D

  13. Anonymous Coward

    Much appreciated

    Thank you.

  14. Anonymous Coward

    Which side is first to build a TOK?

    Enquiring cyborgs need to know.

    Will it be the BOFH & PFY who build her to send to the others or will they themselves be on the receiving end of a pretty girl who can smash doors?

    Is this conflict actually how Skynet starts?

  15. David Haig


    Been waiting for Simon to get back to the Robot Wars!

  16. IsJustabloke

    I refuse to enoble a simple forum post!


    Could someone please tell me what BOFH and PFY stand for?

    I'm sure I'd find this all much funnier if I knew.


    1. Justin S.

      BOFH Glossary of Terms

      BOFH - Bastard Operator From Hell

      PFY - Pimply Faced Youth

    2. mkmaster78

      RE: I refuse to enoble a simple forum post!

      BOFH-Bastard Operator From Hell

      PFY-Pimply-Faced Youth

      We all have to learn it the first time sometime :)

    3. Marky W


      You posted that, when the top 3 responses to my googling 'BOFH' had the answer in the google summary?

      Yes, I'm aware of the irony of my wasting a post to point this out. It's Friday and I'm bored.

  17. Maty

    no, no

    Who says just the chair was in the box.

    The only way to be sure is to nuke the site from orbit.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You must be new here...

  19. EL Vark

    Upping the ante

    I suppose it's only a matter of time before "bring your lad to work day" arrives, but no one can determine to whom the winsome, young David belongs...

    1. stucs201

      Or bring your daughter to work day

      Hmm, BOFH with a portal gun. That could be fun.

  20. Uniquitous

    Again with the robots?

    It's starting to get a bit stale.

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