File Under: Humor, JavaScript

It Looks Like You’re Trying to Visit a Webpage. Would You Like Help?

Image: Microsoft

Clippy may be dead, but it’s going to be a long time before Microsoft lives him down.

Clippy, whose real name was actually Office Assistant, made his debut in Microsoft Office 97 and quickly became famous for such clever quips as, “It looks like you’re writing a letter, would you like help?”

Since Clippy is long gone — he was removed when Office 2007 shipped — it only makes sense to resurrect him on the web, which is exactly what Clippy.js does. Yes, Clippy.js is “a full JavaScript implementation of Microsoft Agent (aka Clippy and friends), ready to be embedded in any website.”

Technically Clippy was not the only help agent and Clippy.js also supports Merlin (a wizard), Rover (a dog) and Links (cat), though sadly not our favorite, Will (a caricature of William Shakespeare, because inane, intrusive help is so much better when it comes from a poorly drawn Shakespeare).

The Clippy.js script is a “weekend project” by the developers behind Smore. As the Clippy.js website puts it, “our research shows that people love two things: failed Microsoft technologies and obscure JavaScript libraries. Naturally, we decided to combine the two.”

If you want to subject your visitors to Clippy, grab the script from GitHub and scroll through the mock Word document that is the Clippy.js site for details on how to use it. Bonus points if you use some conditional loading to only serve Clippy.js to IE 6 users.