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Dilbert hands the Boss a card and says, "It's called a 'Smart Card,' and we should build our next product to handle this sort of payment technology." Dilbert and Wally watch as the card jumps out of the Boss's hand. Dilbert says, "I've never seen that happen." Wally says, "His body rejected the 'Smart Card.'"
Wally sits at his desk thinking, "Whoa . . . I found a huge bug in our new software product." Wally thinks, "I could alert the development team and work many hours of overtime to fix it . . ." Wally thinks, "Or I could surf over to my online brokerage service and buy stock in our competition." Dilbert asks, "Are you going to lunch?" Wally replies, "No, I have to do an analysis." Dilbert walks away thinking, "When Wally works through lunch . . . It's time to buy stock in our competition." Dilbert tells Alice, "Wally's working through lunch!" Alice says, "Quick! To the online brokerage service!" The Boss reads the newspaper and thinks, "Our competition is up ten points on no news. We're up two, maybe from the industry halo effect." The Boss tells Alice and Wally, ". . . Or maybe our new compensation plan is motivating smarter behavior." Wally says, "I think you nailed it."
The Boss tells Dilbert, "I want you to work with our marketing people to design a product brochure." Dilbert thinks, "Groan." Dilbert sits at a conference table with a man from marketing. The man says, "Remember, what we do here might seem like criminal fraud but it's not. It's marketing!" Dilbert says, "Okay, as long as it's not wrong . . ." The man says, "Here's a jar to keep your conscience in. I'll put it in the closet with mine."
The caption says, "Designing a brochure." Dilbert sits at a conference table with a man from marketing. Dilbert says, "We'll want to emphasize the things that make our product unique." The man says, "Good good." Dilbert says, "Let's see . . . We have higher prices . . . Stale technology . . . Fewer features . . . And it's hard to use." Dilbert asks, "Can you work with that?" The man replies, "Suddenly I don't feel so bad that we won't be using 100 percent recycled paper."
The Boss says, "Wally, we don't have time to gather the product requirements ahead of time." The Boss continues, "I want you to start designing the product anyway. Otherwise it will look like we aren't accomplishing anything." Wally sits with his feet up on the desk. He reads the newspaper and thinks, "Of all my projects, I like the doomed ones best."
The Boss says, "Dilbert, you'll work with 'Kenny the sales-weasel' on our biggest prospect." Dilbert and Kenny get into a car. Kenny says, "Tell me all of our product's technical specs on the way. I like to be prepared." They ride in the car. Dilbert says, "Our product is beige. It uses electricity." Kenny says, "Whoa! Brain overload!"
Kenny and Dilbert sit at a conference table with a customer. Kenny tells the man, "I brought Dilbert to explain what makes our product special." Dilbert says, "It's exactly like our competitor's product except we charge more to cover the cost of our deceptive advertising." The man gets up and leaves the room. Dilbert says, "While you're up, could you get me a cup of coffee?" Kenny looks angry.
Dilbert and Kenny sit at a conference table. Kenny tells a customer, "No one has ever been fired for buying our product!" Dilbert adds, "That's true." Dilbert says, "There IS the occasional savage beating . . . and more than our share of suicides . . ." Kenny looks angry. Dilbert continues, "But that has 'statistical clustering' written all over it."
Dilbert stands across from the Boss's desk. He says, "We've identified the people who will create the system to develop a product process." Dilbert points at a newspaper and continues, "While we were doing that, our competitor created a new Internet product that added a billion dollars to their stock value." Dilbert says, "Experts attribute the company's success to their 'employee of the week' program." The Boss says, "Quick! Hire those experts!"
The Boss walks up to Dilbert who is sitting at his computer. The Boss says, "Great news! Our strongest competitor offered to sell us their product line." Dilbert says, "Obviously they think their products are not viable. We'd have to be amazingly stupid..." The Boss interputs, "And you'll be in charge of integrating their product line with ours." Dilbert finishes, "...to work here."