Nobody expects the borkish bank-wisition: When I said I wanted some notes from the ATM, I never thought I'd see...

...the vast emptiness of Notepad


Bork!Bork!Bork! A novel way of entering your PIN features in today's entry into the pantheon of problem-hit computers as a veteran Windows application makes its presence felt in the modern world.

It is common knowledge that Microsoft's Windows operating system lurks behind many an ATM nowadays. Nagging about upgrades and the odd screen of purest blue are not uncommon. However, Notepad showing its face is a new one on us.

Spotted by Register reader Ed at a well-known UK retailer one Saturday morning, we suspect that somebody at the mothership has opened a quick Notepad session for some text editing and forgotten that his or her antics can be seen on the screen of the ATM.

Thankfully, nothing appeared on the pristine white canvas that would send the security world into a panic and, unsurprisingly, our reader elected not to slot in a bank card to see what would happen. "I obviously had to have a go at all the buttons," Ed admitted, "just in case they let me do anything interesting, but unfortunately not!"

Let those among us who have never been tempted to jab a button or two when the opportunity arose cast the first stone.

bork sainsburys bank

Click to enlarge

Windows Notepad is approaching its 40th birthday, having been a fixture of the operating system since the first version. Microsoft has recently taken to tinkering with the poor thing and shoved it into the moribund Microsoft Store in order to make it updateable outside of Windows updates.

Why perfection needs polishing is anyone's guess. Heck, even the classic icon has received a beating at the hands of Fluent-wielding marketeers. Because, lets face it, why test updates when there are bitmaps that need bothering?

Still, even if the modern version continues to suffer at the hands of Microsoft's programmers it is a relief to know that the original clearly lives on thanks to the ubiquity of Windows. And with modern ATMs adopting ever more gaudy screens to flog services to punters, the simplicity of an empty Notepad page is both pleasing to the eye and soothing for the soul.

Just don't go copying and pasting your PIN to remove the formatting, ok? ®

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