Say April Fools' with five OpenOffice.org pranks. Open source has a sense of humor too!
Pick someone who isn't your boss, and it's best not to pick anyone under pressure such as that of a tight schedule on a big project.
Exploit the AutoCorrect feature to mess with your unsuspecting coworkers. It just takes a few minutes on the victim's computer:
- Start OpenOffice.org Writer.
- Click Tools - AutoCorrect.
- In the Replace field type a common word spelled correctly.
- In the With field write a subtle typo or obvious blooper.
- Click OK.
Here are a few ideas to get you started.
|and||Andrew is cool|
|I||I have gas|
|report||My Little Pony|
|Why||Why do birds suddenly appear every time you are near?|
When the fun is over, click on the new entries and delete them.
This article was inspired by Amy Bennett's "5 DIY pranks for the enterprising geek".
Disappearing menu bar
Make the Writer menu bar disappear.
- Close OpenOffice.org completely (including the quickstarter, if it is running).
- On Windowss, open up the folder c:\Program Files\OpenOffice.org 3\Basis\share\config\soffice.cfg\modules\swriter. On Linux, look in /opt/openoffice.org/basis3.0/share/config/soffice.cfg/modules/swriter/menubar/.
Tip: To modify Calc instead of Writer, substitute scalc for swriter.
Tip: The path varies for OpenOffice.org version 2 and on many Linux systems, so if you can't find it, do file search for swriter.
- Rename the file menubar.xml to menubar.xml.bak.
- Start OpenOffice.org back up (if it was already started, so as not to arouse suspicion prematurely).
When the fun is over, rename the file to the original name.
Thanks to Mr. Excel for this idea.
Scary Splash Screen
Strike fear into the hearts of your colleagues when they start OpenOffice.org to find Microsoft Office branding: just switch out the splash screen.
I Love Ponies
Sure, who doesn't love ponies. In fact, ponies are so great that every time the victim presses the left arrow, it will conveniently open up his favourite web page www.ILovePonies.com. What a time saver!
This prank is trickier to implement, so practice on your own system and give yourself extra time.
- Start OpenOffice.org
- Click Tools - Macros - Organize Macros - OpenOffice.org Basic.
- Click the Edit button.
- Paste in this code:
Sub ILovePonies ' Use this line for Microsoft Windows Shell( "cmd.exe /cStart http://www.ILovePonies.com " ) ' Use this line for Linux Shell( "xdg-open http://www.ILovePonies.com " ) End Sub
- Delete the line of code (starting with "Shell") not applicable to your operating system.
- Click File - Close.
- Click Tools - Customize.
- Click the Keyboard tab.
- Click on the shortcut key you want to change. I suggest Left.
- Under Category, click OpenOffice.org Macros to open it up.
- Open the "folders" user, Standard, and Module1.
- Click the Function ILovePonies.
- Click the Modify button.
- Click OK.
When nobody is laughing anymore, go back to Tools - Customize and click the Reset button.
If you prefer the 1987 musical stylings and energetic dance performance of Internet meme star Rick Astley, replace the ponies URL in the above joke with the URL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oHg5SJYRHA0 for a Rickroll.
Don't forget to turn the speakers up so everyone can enjoy!
What about you?
Share your favourite, work-safe April Fool's Pranks in the comments. Be sure to credit the source (preferably by name and URL).