Smooth Operator – Friday Fictioneers

It’s time for Friday Fictioneers, a weekly writers’ community that attempts to write a 100-word story in response to a photo prompt.

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for her dedication and to Ted Strutz for this week’s photo. All are welcome to give this prompt a try. It’s a lot of fun. Here are instructions.

on-on-off
PHOTO PROMPT – Copyright Ted Strutz

Genre: Sci-Fi/Humor (100 words)

Smooth Operator

The weightless package marked “fragile” arrived via express mail to Roy’s shaking, greedy hands. He extricated the metallic-grey object from hugging foam cylinders.

“It’s just like a regular monitor,” Meredith said, shrugging.

“Where’s the switch?” Roy glided his fingers along the wireless, smooth frame. “Anything?”

“Maybe there’s a remote.” The empty box contained only an invoice.

Roy pawed the screen, soothing it, begging for it to turn itself on. He nearly flung it across the room before Meredith shouted, “Easy!”

In defeat, Roy gave the screen a swift knock. The screen beamed and blinked.

“Welcome, Roy,” a cheerful voice announced.

*************************

Apparently, you can already knock on your screen to login on a Mac. Soon, computers will come to us with our profiles already uploaded. They’ll know our families, our favorite songs, what we eat. etc. Well, I guess they already know all that stuff, don’t they?

Here’s a VIDEO demonstrating the Knock login on the Mac, if you’re interested.

Just click HERE for more stories from the Friday Fictioneers.

Advertisements

97 thoughts on “Smooth Operator – Friday Fictioneers

      1. Yeah my devices rule me. I’m addicted to them. Can’t get enough. Crike, I’m on one now! Some of my friends in the world (like you) are simply static images on a screen! What if you’re not real? What if you’re a computer construct? Or some really gross eight hundred pound shut-in (I’m not denigrating shut-ins, though)? What if I’m not real???

        And back to my screen…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ha ha! Oh my gawd! Please tell you’re real, Trenty!!! I know it is wild. Already, we question how real we are out here. How long, before we just really aren’t, before as you say, we’re constructs. I wish I wasn’t addicted, but I am. Help me!!!

        And now…back to my screen…

        Liked by 1 person

  1. This post was both flash fiction and a news story for me, Amy. I was completely unaware about Apple’s knock login. Like Roy, I am too dense for this latest innovation. I cannot fully grasp why it’s necessary, even though I glanced through the explanation after watching the demo video. Thanks for embedding that link!

    Like

    1. I was too, V, until I came across an article that had this new technology in it. Isn’t it wild?! And what a goofy video! I can’t grasp why it’s necessary either except that it’s possible. Sure, glad to do it!

      Like

      1. Obviously, from that guy’s bushy beard, it’s target audience is hipsters. Not us … But I suppose we could wear Yosemite Sam-style mustaches to feel like we’re in the in crowd and knock everything in our paths left, right and center.

        Like

      2. Right! Ha ha. But I don’t have a Yosemite Sam-style mustache. Oh, well! I guess I can’t do the knock. This video is strange to me anyway. The way he knocks but it doesn’t show him knocking. Whoa, now that is cool, huh?

        Like

      3. Or, as my friend, Milton would say, “That’s so stupid, it’s cool.” Or, he might just end the statement with “That’s so stupid.” If today were April 1, I would think this knock was a prank.

        Like

      4. Or, what if you just keep your computer at home? Is this some gimmick I should use when I bring someone over to my apartment to get them to sleep with me? I thought alcohol and low lighting was supposed to serve that purpose.

        Like

      5. You mean “she’ll” think I’m a magician. Good to know! But as long as my 8-year-old MacBook is still chugging, the only knocking I’ll be doing is the usual ripping into whatever irks me at the moment, like pretentious ads starring hipsters with Civil War era facial hair.

        Like

      6. Ha! Oh, pardon me. I didn’t know. Whatever your preference, V. Very good. 🙂 Just don’t hurt yourself. Perhaps some soothing chamomile would help? Please tell me Milton says….

        Like

    1. Exactly, Carrie. I think about that all the time. I can’t even begin to know. My kids already think above and beyond what I am capable at their tender ages. I think a lot of good things are in store for science, hopefully. But with that…the scary.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Do you know the story about Pres. Eisenhower. Reportedly, When Ike was introduced in the 1950’s to this giant Univac computer that was in some US Army Silo he was told he could ask the computer any question. He asked “Is there a God?” The answer: “Now there is”.

    Like

    1. I don’t know that story. Now I’m curious. I’ll look it up! Now that is…ooh, a bit creepy. Was that it’s programmed answer? And what a question to ask?! I bet he had no idea what he was in for? We probably don’t either.

      Like

  3. The only problem I see is that, someday, it will get so easy that it will be just that easy to hack. There is already so much breaking into computers now that I do more work preventing that at times than I do things productively on it.
    Just a thought.
    Scott

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I totally agree with you, and it’s already here really. Not quite like my story. But, I see potential problems with this Knock App. What’s to stop some passerby from gaining access to an account if all they have to do is knock on the screen? This seems to only make it all the more easier. Thanks for comments, Scott.

      Like

      1. I only watched the ad once on your site, but it seemed that the knocking was “fake” and what you really had to do was call on the phone. Check it again. However, still spooks me.

        Like

  4. Amy, this is great. It reminds me of the scene from Zoolander, where they’re pawing at the computer, trying to get the information inside. 🙂 Luckily for him he stumbled across the on switch before he destroyed his new toy. 🙂
    -David

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s funny. I saw that movie, and now I want to go back to watch that part! Thank you, David. I know I have had that feeling of just wanting something to switch on. Have you? It’s beyond frustrating.

      Like

  5. We need more gadgets,
    or do we? I guess everyone
    is either twiddling with an
    iphone-6 or chuckling away
    on a laptop, PC, tablet or
    some other form of wickedness 🙂
    The truth is we are smitten
    with technology and there is
    no letting up in the market.

    Okay I will finish this one here
    and maybe power up my Playstation,
    I have cars to pinch and villains to
    shoot, ahhh the awesomeness of
    the 21st century, tomorrow we will
    be chatting to our personal robotic
    pals and flying shopping trollies to
    the supermarket, or Mars 🙂 lol

    Have a great start to your Friday Amy 🙂

    Andro xxx

    Like

    1. I don’t think there will be any let up! It will change and evolve. Who knows what it will be twenty years from now. I could never imagine what we have now could have existed when I was a kid.

      Have fun pinching off villains! Our personal robots are next. I think you’re quite right about that. Flying shopping trollies. Wow! That sounds exciting. Grocery shopping will be so much fun.

      Have a great Friday and weekend. Thanks, Andro! xoxo

      Like

  6. We’ve already had movies where computers sound like Scarlett Johansson and people fall in love with them. What does the voice sound like that says “Hello, Roy?” Maybe I’ll get me one of them too! No doubt about it, we’re moving fast from the dreams of the post to a brave new world!

    Like

    1. Did you see that movie, “Her”? I heard it was really good. I still haven’t seen it. Who wouldn’t fall in love with Scarlett Johansson’s voice? I think you would be able to program whatever voice you like, Perry, even Scarlett Johansson’s. The brave new world will be here before we know it. Thanks!

      Like

  7. I would have flung it across the room. Oh how I long for printed instructions. I suppose the monitor knew who Roy was from all the information he had to provide when ordering. Didn’t it? You leave just enough doubt for the paranoid amongst us 🙂

    Like

    1. I would have little patience in this situation, too. I get frustrated when I can’t find the “On/Off” button. I imagine all the instructions are online. 🙂 It’s funny…lately I’ve been struggling with simply being referred to a link instead of actual communication with people. You have trouble, just refer to this link. It’s becoming the norm.

      Like

    1. Right! It’s wireless just the clapper. I can’t imagine knocking on my iPhone either. I stay logged into apps for a while, but I guess it’s better if you aren’t. I guess I break all the rules! Thanks for your comments, Cathy.

      Like

  8. Do you know what freaks me out? My iTouch. I was walking through Times Square and my iTouch was on shuffle. First it played On Broadway by The Drifters, then Bummed Out City by Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros and THEN it played New York, New York by Ryan Adams. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Do you know how many songs are in my iTouch?! What are the odds? Fantastic.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. i don’t want that. i don’t want computers arriving with all of my “info” on them already. i can’t imagine it ever happening. but if it does – i blame YOU for predicting it. nyah!

    Like

  10. I certainly know how it feels to want to fling an electrical gadget against the wall. I had no idea a person could knock their Mac monitor on these days.

    If my next laptop comes loaded with my personal info, I certainly hope it won’t keep showing me different kinds of coconut oil ads:( I looked at coconut oil – on Amazon – ONCE and keep getting ads for it.

    Ellespeth

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I didn’t know about the Mac and iPhone Knock app until just a day before the prompt. It was fresh on mind.

      Ha ha! I know what you mean about those ads. If you look at them just once, they haunt you forever! Maybe they’ll start showing you island vacation packages. That wouldn’t be so bad to look at, although a bit depressing if you couldn’t go. Thanks, Ellespeth.

      Like

  11. Dear Amy, I think you are right – technology will surpass anything we can now imagine. I find this so disturbing but I feel sure it will exist one day! Look how far we have come since the beginning the pc. It should be an interesting time. Nan 🙂

    Like

    1. Right you are, Nan. Look at where technology has gone in such a short period of time. The speed at which things happen is only going to increase. Thanks for comments, Nan. 🙂

      Like

  12. Thanks for the story, Amy! I have an iMac and don’t even know that. Kind of cool and eye catching and selling feature I suppose. But why? I can just press a button instead of a knock with less effort I think.

    Lily

    Like

    1. Thanks for reading, Lily! Yes, “why” is the question. It would seem to create more problems than anything. I suppose it’s because it can be done? I guess the only good thing about a knock is that you can probably knock anywhere on your screen. But, ouch, if it doesn’t work. That might hurt your knuckles, knocking it over and over. 🙂

      Like

  13. Wasn’t sure where you were going, but then I had to laugh at the end.

    Off topic …(respectfully, no answer required) …. Do you live in one of these wine regions: Amador/Sierra Foothills or Lodi?

    Like

      1. Cool! They’re all really pretty areas. I especially like the Sierra Foothills, but Amador comes a very close second. Lots of very pretty wineries, too. Can you believe I still haven’t made it over to Napa? That’s not too far away, either.

        Like

  14. We ordered an iMac two years ago at Christmas. When I opened the box, there were no instructions for set-up. It was one of those figure-it-out-as-you-go situations. Connie and I experienced a substantial learning curve going from PC to Mac, but I don’t think I’m ready for the “knock, knock, who’s there?” version just yet.

    Like

    1. Oh, no! Tell me it isn’t so. The lack of instructions is convenient here, but I didn’t think too far from the truth. I’m sorry you had to experience that. My feeling is that lately since everything is online, there are less instructions. Everyone just says, “go to this link!” It’s frustrating, isn’t it? I’m with you. And, what happens if the knock doesn’t work?

      Like

  15. Great story Amy and I learnt something too. Technology has invaded our lives in so many subtle ways, that I wonder if we would ever know when it was too late.

    Like

  16. I liked your story, Amy. I was wondering how you knew my kiln was a silver-grey color. When I got to the end and read Mac I got it. Then I went into the back room and knocked on my silent silver iMac… nothing. Went back to my (silver) MacBook and watched the video. Thanks for this info, Amy.

    Like

    1. I didn’t know it was a kiln until I read a few stories…As for the Knock, yeah you need the App, Ted. Because, you know, there’s an App for everything, isn’t there? Thank you for the interesting photo that inspired so many good reads!

      Like

  17. Humorous story, Amy. I’ve often felt like throwing my laptop across the room, not to get it to turn on, but to get it to “move” once it’s turned on. It “freezes” on me. I get this message across the top of the screen that says, “Not responding.” As if I need to be told. 😦 Well done. 🙂 — Suzanne

    Like

    1. Thanks, Suzanne. Technology is progress, but not without a lot of headaches. We should all have throw your laptop across the room day. Maybe that would make us all feel better. 🙂

      Like

Take it away.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s