Monday, February 13, 2012

Barney the Evil Dinosaur

This is an old story from before I had a blog, but one of my favorite on when technology goes bad.

In the late 90's, the undergraduate CS coordinator at the time, Don Crabb, also wrote a column on technology for the Chicago Sun-Times and would get tons of tech stuff to review. One of these items was a robotic Barney the Dinosaur that interacted with the Barney and Friends show on PBS. I took Barney home and tried him out with my then 3-year old daughter Annie.

He worked as advertised, singing along with the characters on TV. But at one point Annie said "Let's read a book Barney". Barney replied "Let's watch TV". Annie said "OK". Definitely sending the wrong message here.

Later Annie was playing with Barney in the kitchen. Annie, who was toilet training, said to Barney "I have to go wee-wee". Barney said "Let's play a game". Annie said "OK". Soon I had a mess to clean up.

That was the end of Barney.


  1. are parents contractually obligated to tell embarrassing stories about their children?

    do they really need to tell them on the Internet too?

  2. Lighten up, Anonymous, it was a cute, funny story. Are blog posters obligated to be such Debbie Downers?

    1. no, he can write all he wants about embarrassing things that happened to him without me saying a word against it

    2. Ha ha, thanks for making the world a better place, one blog at a time.