21st Challenge No. 22

Draft a memo from the Gates home planet.

By Charlie Varon - Jim Rosenau
May 22, 1999 8:00PM (UTC)
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Three existential questions remain: How did the universe begin? Is it
possible for human beings to move beyond aggression? And should we allow the
cloning of Republicans?

To these riddles another must now be added: Is Bill Gates human?
Or is he, as some observers are now cautiously suggesting, an
extraterrestrial inhabiting a human body?


In this Challenge, we will explore the latter possibility.

Salon readers are invited to assume the role of Bill Gates' supervisor,
located on the distant planet Ep^3. Each year at this time, you send a
single, encrypted communiqui to Mr. Gates. You can use this opportunity
to evaluate his performance, update his mission or report on news from home.

Write the report in Ep^3-chat, and then translate it into exactly 18 English
words. (The Ep^3-to-Earth transmission software will garble anything shorter
or longer.)


Good luck! Or, as they say on Ep^3, Bizkay umvbr~!


Send your submissions via e-mail only to
Please include your
full name and an accurate e-mail address so we can
contact you if you're a winner. By submitting your
entry you give Salon Technology permission to
publish it. Deadline for entries is May 31, 1999.



The winning response will receive a copy of Salon
Technology senior correspondent Andrew Leonard's
book, "Bots: The Origin of New Species."

In two weeks we'll publish a winner and some selected
entries -- then start over a couple weeks after that with
a whole new challenge.

Charlie Varon

Charlie Varon is a humorist and playwright. His works include "Ralph Nader Is Missing" and "Rush Limbaugh in Night School."

MORE FROM Charlie Varon

Jim Rosenau

Jim Rosenau is a writer, editor and software designer in Berkeley, Calif. Jim and Charlie are also co-founders of the citizens group Californians for Earthquake Prevention and partners in Mockingbird Media, which offers a full line of comic services.

MORE FROM Jim Rosenau

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