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Pentium Humor

Engineering Humor - RF CafeTake a break from the drudgery with some of these jokes, song parodies, anecdotes and assorted humor that has been collected from friends & from websites across the Internet. This humor is light-hearted and sometimes slightly offensive to the easily-offended, so you are forewarned. I have taken care to censor "humor" with reproductive function innuendo and hateful tirades, so it is all workplace-safe. I have also tried to warn of any links that will result in audio clips so you can take appropriate precautions. Please send any potential candidates for this humor page to the e-mail link above.

Humor #1 | Humor #2 | Humor #3

Good humor is timeless, and even though the Intel Pentium floating point bug problem is two decades old, this is still funny - especially if you were around during the time.

In case you hadn't heard, Intel's top-of-the-line chip has a bug with its floating-point divide being imprecise. For example:

5505001/294911 = 18.666651973 (powerpc) 5505001/294911 = 18.66600093 (pentium) 5505001/294911 = 18.666651 (cheap $5 calculator bought at Thrifty's)

The Net's response:

  • Q: How many Pentium designers does it take to screw in a light bulb?
    A: 1.99904274017, but that's close enough for non-technical people.
  • Q: What do you get when you cross a Pentium PC with a research grant?
    A: A mad scientist.
  • Q: What's another name for the "Intel Inside" sticker they put on Pentiums?
    A: Warning label.
  • Q: What do you call a series of FDIV instructions on a Pentium?
    A: Successive approximations.
  • Q: Complete the following word analogy: Add is to Subtract as Multiply is to 1) Divide 2) ROUND 3) RANDOM 4) On a Pentium, all of the above
    A: Number 4.
  • Q: What algorithm did Intel use in the Pentium's floating point divider?
    A: "Life is like a box of chocolates." (Source: F. Gump of Intel)
  • Q: Why didn't Intel call the Pentium the 586?
    A: Because they added 486 and 100 on the first Pentium and got 585.999983605.
  • Q: According to Intel, the Pentium conforms to the IEEE standards 754 and 854 for floating point arithmetic. If you fly in aircraft designed using a Pentium, what is the correct pronunciation of "IEEE"?
    A: Aaaaaaaiiiiiiiiieeeeeeeeeeeee!


    9.9999973251 (≈ 10)     It's a FLAW, Dammit, not a Bug

   8.9999163362  (≈ 9)       It's Close Enough, We Say So

   7.9999414610  (≈ 8)       Nearly 300 Correct Opcodes (you mean, 299.9999831538?)

   6.9999831538  (≈ 7)       You Don't Need to Know What's Inside

   5.9999835137  (≈ 6)       Redefining the PC--and Mathematics As Well

   4.9999999021  (≈ 5)       We Fixed It, Really

   3.9998245917  (≈ 4)       Division Considered Harmful

   2.9991523619  (≈ 3)       Why Do You Think They Call It *Floating* Point?

   1.9999103517  (≈ 2)       We're Looking for a Few Good Flaws

   And...   0.9999999998  (≈ 1)       The Errata Inside

When the most recent Pentium math problem was revealed, National Public Radio's Marketplace™ radio show did a contest to rename the chip. Based on Intel's classic response of flat denial, or at least plausible deniability, the winner was "The UnrePentium," so dubbed by Bob Kemp, of Barrington, RI. Bob’s award for the winning entry was a Marketplace™ coffee mug and -- what else? --a bag of chips (potato chips, not computer chips). (thanks to Joe T. for this one, and to Bob K. himself for contacting me to complete the story)

---from the Interstice website
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Webmaster:  Kirt Blattenberger, BSEE - KB3UON

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