To lie or keep in hiding, as for some evil reason.  To move or go in a mean, stealthy manner.

Monday November 8, 1999

WebSkulker Newsletter
Skulking in the rain, web skulking in the rain

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Robot skulker for only $2,500

Act quickly, today is the last day to place an order for the Sony Aibo robot dog.  The price is a mere $2,500 plus $450 for the optional programming kit, so surely all you jr. skulkers will want one.  Sony manufactured 5,000 of these and sold them earlier this year for $2,500 each and was amazed that they sold out in four days with thousands of people clambering for more.  They just manufactured another 10,000 and are taking orders only from November 1 through 8.  If more than 10,000 orders are received, they will have a random drawing to see who gets them.

Now why would anyone want to pay $2,500 for a little robot dog, and why are people on eBay bidding up to $5,000 for one of the original set?  WebSkulker and several jr. skulkers. went to a party over the weekend at the home of a Silicon Valley multi-millionaire who had one.  We all played with it for a couple of hours and would have loved to take it home, but not for $5,000 and not for $2,500.  $500 maybe.

Aibo is a lot more than the average toy robot for kids.  Read the specifications:
and realize that it has a 64-bit RISK processor, 16 MB of RAM, 8MB of program memory, a TV camera, infrared distance sensor, etc.  It can walk, sit, kneel, lie down on its side, get up again, wag its tail, and move its head in all directions.  It learns behaviors over time with feedback from the owner.  WebSkulker thinks he would get bored with it in several hours, but the owner told us he has spent at least 60 hours with it and still plays with it.

WebSkulker's cat is concerned with the rumor that Sony's next project is a robotic cat.

Remote skulking

Jr. skulkers may be familiar with the X10 system of low-priced remote control devices that can be used to turn lights and appliances on and off by remote control, including several models of wireless remotes and PC interfaces.  If you never heard of them, look at the second link which introduces the system and has discount prices for starter systems.  If you have seen X10 products in stores, you will be amazed at the low prices on their web site for direct sales.

But the prices are even lower than they appear because they always have specials going on where they take off maybe 12% and/or give free accessories with every order.  They publish a daily email newsletter which is quite annoying because it is daily and doesn't change much from day to day, but is invaluable because it tells you the specials which are often amazing.  You would not believe how much X10 stuff WebSkulker has bought just because it was practically free on a particular day!  Ignore the expiration dates in the newsletter.  They will often say that you must respond immediately because the offer expires midnight that night, but the next day and the next etc. they will keep saying that they extended the offer because of the great demand, etc.

Add motion detectors: and have lights turn on automatically when someone walks into an area or a car pulls into the driveway or garage.  Dial your phone number and turn lights and appliances on and off with the Telephone Responder (the web page describing this isn't working at this time, but try it).

X10 also has a line of alarm and security products and wireless remote video and audio senders.

Skulking the truth

This site was submitted by Jr. Skulker Uncle Brucie.  "The Smoking Gun brings you exclusive documents -- cool, confidential, quirky -- that can't be found elsewhere on the Web. Using material obtained from government and law enforcement sources, via Freedom of Information requests, and from court files nationwide, we guarantee everything here is 100% authentic."

See, for example, material about Bill Gates: the police report of a 1977 car crash and a mug shot:

The archive of all past items is at:


Skulking Brazilian internet?  Not.

WebSkulker has no idea why this site is here.  The top says "Ad campaign for a Brazilian internet company", but let WebSkulker tell you something, that is NOT what this page is about.

There should be seven pictures.  This loads very slowly, even in the middle of the night, so be patient and try again later if you can't get through or not all of the pictures load.  The pictures are worth the trouble!

This made WebSkulker laugh

Submitted by Jr. Skulker Stuart Shostak

A man complained to his friend, "my elbow hurts.  I better go to the doctor."  "Don't do that, " volunteered his friend, "there's a new computer at the drugstore that can diagnose any problem quicker and cheaper than a doctor.  All you have to do is put in a urine sample, deposit $10.00, then the computer will give you your diagnosis and plan of treatment."

The man figured he had nothing to lose, so he took a sample of urine down to the drugstore.  Finding the machine, he poured in the urine and deposited $10.00.  The machine began to buzz and various lights flashed on and off.  After a short pause, a slip of paper popped out on which was printed: "You have tennis elbow.  Soak your arm in warm water twice a day.  Avoid heavy labor.  Your elbow will be better in two weeks."

That evening as the man contemplated this breakthrough in medical science, he began to suspect fraud.  To test his theory he mixed together some tap water, stool sample from his dog, and urine samples from his wife and teenage daughter.  To top it all off, he masturbated into the jar.  He took this concoction down to the drugstore, poured it in the machine and deposited $10.00.  The machine went through the same buzzing and flashing routine as before then printed out the following message:  "Your tap water has lead.  Get a filter.  Your dog has worms.  Give him vitamins.  Your daughter is on drugs.  Get her in rehab.  Your wife is pregnant.  It's not your baby.  Get a lawyer.  And, if you don't stop jerking off, your tennis elbow will never get better."


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