Help My Neighbor

I am entering this post from a terminal in the Kendall public library, where I have just spent the last 30 minutes killing spam while my kids play in the local chess club.

The nice gentleman at the terminal next to mine has a technical problem neither he nor I can solve. He doesn't have a computer at home. He reads his email online (via mail.yahoo.com) at the library. As you might expect, the computers here are seriously locked down: you can't save anything to a hard disk, although you can bring in your own floppy to write to. Someone sent him an email with a zipped attachment. The computers here don't have any unzipping software and there is no way to download one. The only browser is IE, which doesn't seem to open the .zip extension automatically.

So how can he read the attachment to his mail?

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8 Responses to Help My Neighbor

  1. Brett Bellmore says:

    Can he download a shareware zip utility to the floppy, and run it from there? It should fit.

  2. Or, maybe, if it could be resent compressed with WinZip it would self extract…?

  3. P.S…

    How scary is it that you got 2 responses to this in 14 minutes….Brett, I think we’re officially sad board trolls with no lives of our own.

  4. Chuck says:

    1. Comb your hair.
    2. Eat a breath mint.
    3. Ask some nice co-ed with a wireless laptop, who naturally has win.zip installed,
    if he can borrow her computer for 5 minutes to download and unzip a file.

    What’cha think? Will that work?

  5. Michael says:

    Um, Chuck, maybe this calls for ASCII art:

    this was the line up at the library:

    XX XY XY
    |    |     |
    his him me
    wife

  6. formerstudent says:

    http://www.easiestfilesystem.com/basic-online-file-storage-features.htm

    Scroll down to “Zip Support”

    I’ve never tried it, but this may work, 15 day free trial or he may have to spend $3. He would have to download .zip to floppy and then upload to service.

    I don’t know which is more shocking, that there is an adequate public library in Kendall, or that there exists a chess club in Kendall.

  7. thomas says:

    1) “reply”
    2) “can you send that document without zipping it? i don’t have a computer and can’t read it. thanks.”
    3) “send”

  8. Andrew Lazarus says:

    In particular the old DOS-based pkzip.exe should fit onto that floppy easily.

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