The side door opened and in walked Zyx, the world’s most controversial technology blogger. His posts always caused fierce outrage and heavy floods of hate mail and death threats. As a result he was forced to forever conceal his identity by changing his name and hiding his face underneath a black faceless mask when venturing out in public. Little wonder then he always used the side door to enter the building where he worked.
Zyx walked up to the receptionist’s desk where she greeted him with a startled gasp. “Sorry, Zyx,” she apologized. “That mask always scares me. Oh, this came for you.” She produced a small narrow box wrapped in plain paper. “It’s already been screened so it should be safe.”
Without saying a word Zyx took the box and walked to the stairs that took him to his office on the third floor. He couldn’t help wonder what death threats and hatemail he was going to get from his latest post entitled “Linux and Beach Balls”.
When he reached the third floor, Zyx pushed open the door to leave the stairwell and enter the office, walking silently past the cubicles and ignoring the startled faces of his co-workers as they watched him make his entrance. He soon walked up to the locked door of his windowless office, unlocked it and walked inside.
After closing and locking the door behind him, Zyx pulled off his mask and heaved a sigh of relief. He placed the small box on his desk and logged on his computer. When he pulled up his e-mail, sure enough, there were 38,512 messages with subject lines such as “DIE YOU SCUM” and “YOU SUCK”. Zyx skimmed the subjects of the e-mails until his eyes caught one that read “Your column”, which usually hinted at constructive criticism instead of the usual insults and death threats. Opening it, he read:
Zyx, you should be in receipt of a small box that was mailed to you last night. This box contains the viewing glasses needed to view the attached video clip.
Curious, Zyx unwrapped the box and pulled out a pair of what appeared to be sunglasses. He put them on and opened the video clip that was attached to the e-mail. On the screen was someone wearing a scary clown mask and facing the camera. Through the viewing glasses the image appeared incredibly lifelike.
Then the clown spoke. “Hello, Zyx, I just read your latest post entitled ‘Linux and Beach Balls’ and as usual it was anything but meaningful and informative. That’s typical of your blog which serves no purpose other than spreading lies and paranoia. This has gone on too long. I intend to stop it.”
Suddenly a pair of hands shot out from the screen and clamped tightly around Zyx’s neck. Zyx struggled but the hands’ grip was too powerful, and soon he took his last breath. His lifeless body slid off the chair and landed on the floor with a thud.
As if on cue, the computer suddenly went dead as the motherboard overheated and melted the computer, forever concealing the video and the identity of the killer who sent it. His murder remains one of technology’s most notorious unsolved mysteries.