Tuesday, February 24, 2009

John Cleese's Friendly Advice Machine

I rarely use this blog to highlight commercial products or advertisements, but every now and then I stumble across something that archivists or records managers might find interesting. The following site isn't new, but I came across it a couple of days ago when doing some general research. It made my day.

About a year ago, Iron Mountain Digital engaged comedian John Cleese, who has long history of making training films, to create a series of film clips highlighting its data backup and recovery, e-discovery, and other services. The result: John Cleese's Friendly Advice Machine, in which "Dr. Harold Twainweck" and other characters dispense not-so-friendly but memorable advice.

The Friendly Advice Machine is targeted to IT professionals, but electronic records managers and electronic records archivists who love Cleese and Monty Python will also find it eminently rewarding.

Be warned: if you visit the Friendly Advice Machine, watch the intro, and then wait for more than a few seconds to choose a video or click on a link, "Dr. Twainweck" will start to badger you: "If this were a game show, you'd have lost by now." "Look, I'm going to go read a book -- something you may never have experienced -- and you can click whenever you figure it out, okay?"

And, yes, there is a video about spam-spam-spam-spam-SPAM!

One last thing: my relationship with Iron Mountain consists of chatting with its reps at SAA and other conferences and receiving the occasional blanket sales call. I simply find the Friendly Advice Machine entertaining, and I hope you do, too.

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