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You are working away at your computer and a little window appears in the corner of your screen -'You are a wonderful father because you always have time to listen Jimmy's problems'. Several hours later the window opens with a new message - 'Last year you saved $10,000 on the Toyota Camry'. And later
'In 1987 you saved a small child from drowning at Shelly Beach - and this year he graduated from high school.'
The program is purchased by a friend/family member/loved one etc and positive personal information about things they have done in their lives - whether work, relationship, monetary or sport related is entered into it. The program is then given to the said person or installed on their desktop without their knowledge - timed at intervals to pop up an affirming 'shameless plug' about themselves.
By Fishrat [DrBob, Dec 01 2004]
||It's a nice idea but it might come across as a bit sinister if lots of personal information started to appear on the screen for no known reason. I think it would have to acknowledge the name of the person responsible to avoid this if it was installed anonymously.
||A lot of [ben]'s best ideas have a bit of freakiness in them. Just try to go limp. [+]
||Not keen on secretly installed software, regardless of good intent. I like the concept though. Perhaps you could install the software on your own machine which would send e-mails, rather than have pop-ups. Clearly not as glamorous as a sudden surprise message but a bit more practical.
I also wondered about creating a web service that could do this for you and then that set me thinking that, if you got enough subscribers, it could tie up nicely with ... [rummage, rummage]... Fishrat's 'Thought Bubbles' idea (see link). You could build up a web based database detailing the history of the ordinary which would issue daily bulletins by e-mail as an antidote to all those 'On this Day' columns that you get in newspapers.
||Would the UI feature a picture of Stuart Smalley?