Rupert Goodwins' diary

Tuesday 31/7/2001End of the month coming up, which used to just mean payday and a vague feeling of dread concerning Time's winged Austin Montego. Today, though, we're all on Code Red -- the latest monstrous worm chewing its way through the Internet.

Tuesday
31/7/2001 End of the month coming up, which used to just mean payday and a vague feeling of dread concerning Time's winged Austin Montego. Today, though, we're all on Code Red -- the latest monstrous worm chewing its way through the Internet. At the stroke of midnight, it rises once more from its dormancy in the womb of Microsoft's infection-prone web server software and spews evil progeny across the Internet. However, the only things being spewed so far are untold acres of news coverage. I get roused from my slumbers at 7:05am by Emily at Radio 4's the Today programme, who pauses only to make sure I'm able to string a sentence together before putting me on the air. And so I achieve a long-held ambition, to be interviewed by Sue MacGregor while lying in bed in a state of undress (me, not her...). Naked to the nation -- believe me, as broadcast horrors go this puts Brass Eye in the shade. Sense prevails later in the day, as we pore over the reports from around the world. The old questions keep coming up: why has nobody taken Microsoft to the cleaners for shipping consistently dangerous product? Conspiracy theorists say that it's all a plan to pave the way for the Cosa Dostra to introduce a 'safer' (ie, controlled by Redmond) alternative to TCP/IP; I don't know about that. The way the world's feeling at the moment, if Bill Gates said it was a nice day they'd wait for the weather report before saying "Yup". What we have here, I fear, is a company too big to do anything right. But will there be a Web tomorrow? I go to sleep, wondering if I'll get to do John Humphries in the shower...

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