David Rabbitborough's A to Z of Australian Species



Every so often a species appears on Earth that is so unusual that it seems almost like an alien from another world. Such a creature is the Computer Programmer. This species appeared quite suddenly in the world a few years ago and has increased rapidly in numbers - which is puzzling because they seem almost totally inactive in terms of reproduction. Programmers seem to exist in almost total darkness without eating or drinking - more like plants than animals. Some scientists believe that they derive energy directly from the radiation of the video screen which is collected by their wide, staring eyes. When separated from the monitor screen the creatures move slowly around, oblivious of their surroundings.

Communication with other species seems non-existent but they are often found talking to each other in a language that has yet to be deciphered. Their main communication, however, is with computers themselves. Most Programmers cannot pass a computer without trying to make contact with it. It's almost as if they have been programmed by computers to carry messages from one terminal to another. Overall they are a phenomenon which we have scarcely begun to comprehend and one which, now we've become totally dependent on them, may not reveal its true significance for some time.

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