Clearing her throat in front of the lecture hall of 150 students, computer science professor Vida Weisblum appeared determined to ignore the fact that her PowerPoint presentation was clearly malfunctioning.
“Who can tell me the runtime of this algorithm?” said Weisblum, whose PhD in linguistic digital models seemed unable to prevent the spinning rainbow cursor icon from being frozen on screen for the past five minutes. “Come on, I know someone here did the reading.”
“Just a normal day in my class,” an increasingly sweaty Weisblum continued, shuffling her feet below the projector screen on which her thoroughly researched presentation on instance variables was beginning to cycle through window menus unprompted.
Students seemed puzzled by their professor’s refusal to acknowledge her glitchy software. “She could probably just force quit, to be honest,” said Dana Rooney ’19. “Maybe it’s some kind of weird pride thing. But it couldn’t hurt to call someone from IT.”
“Computers are my thing, and I’m good at them,” Weisblum reminded her students as her eyes darted in panic up towards the screen. “Would I be a fully tenured professor at this university if I didn’t know how to write flawless code, program complicated software, and figure out why this goddamn thing keeps fucking freezing?”
At press time, Weisblum was using the textbook she wrote to fan away smoke that had begun emanating from the projector.