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Kangaroo Squadron

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The Australian armed forces use simulators to train their helicopter pilots.

Because of some of the unique features of Oz, basic simulation packages need to be tweeked to represent the unique flora and fauna of down under. One specific case is that herds of Kangaroos react in a very specific was to helicopters (they run ... err ... bounce directly away from the noise), so helicopter pilots require to remember this since it gives away their position and angle of approach.

A junior programmer was given the task of creating herds of Kangaroos for a helicopter simulator. However the code monkey was a lazy sort so rather than create a Roo from scratch, he used a basic infantryman package as a starting point. He altered the speed of movement, graphic, reaction to helicopter noise and then went down the pub safe in the knowledge that no-one would guess he had cut corners.

First time the simulator was used with the Roo code, the chopper pilots were surprised as this was a new feature they had never seen. For a laff they decided to buzz the poor beasts. The Kangaroos did as their programming told them to and fled directly away from the helicopter behind a small hill.

The pilots were still grinning about giving skippy and his family a fright when the Kangaroos appeared on the other side of the hill, stopped and launched some portable Surface to Air Missles. The programmer had forgot to remove the weapons from the original template. Needless to say he was given an interview without coffee BUT the armed kangaroos were left in the program to make sure that helicopter pilots in Oz remember to stay away from Kangaroos.

This may be an urban myth but who cares, makes me laugh!