Overheard on CNN.com: This is your braaaaaaiiiins on zombies
In "The Zombie Autopsies," Dr. Steven Schlozman imagines a virus that strips the brain down to its basest levels.
April 25th, 2011
08:13 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: This is your braaaaaaiiiins on zombies

If and when a zombie apocalypse ever does come to pass, rest assured: Tons and tons of your fellow living humans already have a plan in mind.

Today's comment of the day comes from Stejo, who addressed the political implications of the zombie brain: "For those of you thinking you'll browse the comments, I'll save you some time: Right: 'Democrats are zombies.' Left: 'Republicans/Tea Party members are zombies.' Serious Scientists: 'This article is full of errors.' Sci-Fi Fans: 'Lighten up, Serious Scientist.' I think that pretty much sums it up. I hope I've saved you some valuable time."

Between a blissfully geeky story about the undead and Friday's article on Mac and PC users' stereotypes, we saw a major revenge of the nerds on CNN.com in the best possible way. We also received lots of thoughtful postings on airline overbooking. Our readers are churning many ideas on how to improve the airlines' workflow. Read on and check out what they had to say.

Inside zombie brains: Sci-fi teaches science

The new novel "The Zombie Autopsies" includes an apocalyptic scenario in which an airborne virus is rapidly turning people into zombies and wiping out humanity. Writer Dr. Steven Schlozman says the undead are a great way to explore real-world health issues, and commenters jumped at the chance to have a big ol' Internet-powered chat about zombies. Most seemed eager to have found people who think like them.

Maybe HolyMoley summed up the response best: "You know what is beautiful about this story and all these posts? I have just discovered I am not alone in my obsession about a pending zombie apocalypse."

Others found odd solace in this world. thinctanc wrote, "I think a world of 7 billion flesh-and-blood, living, thinking, scheming, warring, fearful, and ignorant human beings is infinitely more frightening and compelling than a zombie apocalypse. We're living in one or the other. Not really sure which."

Still others made jokes. lonewolf4001 said, "Trick story, you don't need to know how their brains work when they're splattered on your front door." psjdad wrote, "I'm not worried, Dwight Schrute says the most effective and satisfying way to kill a zombie is to just stab them in the brain with a wooden stick. Can do."

Interestingly, many characterized themselves or their co-workers as possible undead. lenswife noted, "I feel like a zombie...here at work. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz" The most popular comment came from geekanator, who wrote, "7 zombie kills gets you a harrier so we shall do fine."

Getting bumped gets more lucrative

Columnist Brett Snyder's article about changes to airlines' "getting bumped" policies got people talking about possible fare increases that may come as a result, as well as the practice of overbooking flights. Commenters seemed divided on whether overbooking is a good idea; compelling arguments came from both sides.

ImRarelyNice wrote, "If I purchase a ticket to the movies or the theater and I don't show up, the seat remains empty and the show goes on. The same thing should apply to a flight. Airlines and doctor's offices seem to be getting away with overbooking in the name of greed and getting away with it."

GramPam asked, "Why not just start penalizong the people who make reservations and then don't show up? Seems simple enough."

But NoBaggerHere suggested, "Why penalize them? If they paid for the flight, what difference does it make if the seat is empty? In fact the airline will save 2 minutes and 17 cents for peanuts and that partial can of Coke by not having to serve the absent person."

Codepwned asserted, "I have a better idea. Lets stop the no-shows. Tickets are non-refundable at 7 days prior to flight and can only be exchanged for their face value. If you don't show up for your flight you lose your money. Wow... simple concept here."

jschmurr suggested, "For those of you saying 'just make tickets unrefundable': you are ignoring one of the largest reasons that people miss flights: because they are scheduled to make a connection from a different flight that ends up arriving late. You wouldn't be too happy if your plane arrived too late to make your connecting flight and yet you had to buy a fresh ticket!"

NKTC2121 said, "Its greedy to not be wasteful? Empty seats on the plane waste a commodity and valuable resources. Not profiting from the opportunity only increases the cost to those that use the service."

Mac vs. PC: The stereotypes may be true

An innocent story Friday about Mac and PC user stereotypes got more than 5,000 fiery/nerdy responses. (We say that with love.) The commenting battle continues in this story published today in CNN's Tech section.

Perhaps not surprisingly, C130Vet generated hundreds of likes and responses with this provocative gem: "Trying to do anything with a Mac is like having sex with all your clothes on. They're for people who don't know anything about computers and don't want to. My homebuilt PC is like an F-22 Raptor compared to a Mac Piper Cub."

randumbguy said, "The PC guy also looks like someone who does what he's told, will never advance beyond lower echelons of middle level management, and the most creative thing that will ever come from him is chosing something other than Times New Roman as a font; a solid team anchor. The kind of guy who will keep your team from going anywhere! The Mac guy will try to change the world - he may fail, but he'll try." AmericanSam said, "I'm a Mac user and I use it because it's better and more reliable than a PC in my experience, especially with the recording I do. I may use a Mac, but I don't treat PC users like jerks."

Can't we all just get along? Many played to the center. mista123 said, "I use both ... Macs and PCs (which ive built) ... each one has their advantages and disadvantages ... people should step up and recognize this instead of blindly bashing each other."

An interesting thread emerged about who wears the suits in this pantheon. Josef72 said, "The thing I've always taken away from these ads is that the PC guy looks like he has a job and pays his taxes an the Mac guy looks the sort who would crash on your sofa for a week without paying rent, drink all your good beer, and make fun of your taste in music." p0st3r then said, "Nah, he looks more like one of those startup Internet billionaires. where they have pool tables and video games all over their office before their startup crashes and burns and they're back to working at Starbucks."

And sleepytime noted, "The thing I take away from Josef72's comment is that he doesn't understand that not all jobs require one to a wear a suit." GeneralTso replied, "But you can't deny that the vast majority of high-paying jobs require a nice suit. Sure there might be millionaire and billionaires whose job doesn't require wearing a suit per se, eg. Steve Jobs, but it's the exception rather than the rule."

tecsavvy noted, "I'm sick of hearing all these MAC vs PC flame wars. The cold hard fact is a MAC *IS* A PC! 'PC' is an acronym for Personal Computer and has absolutely no bearing on what brand or operating system it uses. When I started working on 'IBM-compatible' computers back in the 80s, the MAC was a glorified calculator with a 9" green monochrome screen. It's all about the software, and lack there of for the MAC that is the reason I use a Windows machine. If all you Mac trolls want to start an intelligent argument, start referring to Mac vs. Windows or Apple vs. Microsoft since that is what it is all actually about."

Editor's note: Some comments edited for length and clarity.

soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. Import

    This was awesome. The Apple vs. Microsoft thing was great too. Its funny that people are like one is better than the other. Fact is they both have something the other lacks. I just use both...omg game changer!!!

    April 25, 2011 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Dim Mak

    After reading these blogs I'm convinced zombies have learned to type.

    April 25, 2011 at 10:07 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Dim Mak

    I notice no difference between a top of the line pc or a mac other than the OS and aesthetics.

    April 25, 2011 at 10:09 pm | Report abuse |
  4. HeIsGod

    I thought the Article was going to talk about Atheists/Agnostics.....oh well.

    8 – ) JK

    April 25, 2011 at 10:37 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Joe

    My machete is sharpened and ready to go.

    April 25, 2011 at 10:39 pm | Report abuse |
  6. TvNYC

    Stupid article. Nicole Saidi you are an idiot!

    April 25, 2011 at 10:48 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Marcus

    Typically a full day within the fabric covered confines of corporate america cubicle & full menu of related pablum does it for me. I am Zombie. Who could have known.

    April 25, 2011 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Zombie Apoc Survivor

    I think its funny you all think you are going to survive. You are all going to kick some Zombie ass, guns a blazin sort of stuff. The survivors arent the heros. The Survivors are the ones that are smart, calculative. Face it most of you have the iq of a zombie, becoming a zombie is your destiny, an all around improvement in your life. As for me Im going to be stocked up Wandering the U.P.(the one place in america zombies dont go. Probably Mackinaw Island

    April 25, 2011 at 10:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • DedTV

      A cold climate? No electricity is gonna make things suck in winter. And all the bats are going to make disease a constant threat. And cold climates have a short growing season and there's little natural food vegetation on the island so your gardening choices are going to be very limited unless you bring plenty of fertile seed stock (many commercial seeds produce plants that breed sterile seeds to prevent wild growth from infesting native plant populations) and know some basic plant breeding techniques, mostly importantly being how to harvest viable seed for the future. And be sure your hunting and fishing skills are pretty well developed. And there's quite a large human population there so there'll be plenty of native zombies to deal with.

      I'd personally (depending on how much of the population survives the initial chaos and infection) choose someplace in the central US. Kansas or Oklahoma would be about perfect. There's lots of undeveloped rural areas where people still know how to survive without technology like electricity and running water and those that don't make it, will leave the tools they use behind for you to scavenge and use. There's lots of wild edible fruit and vegetable plants that would quickly overrun the area and fertile land and great growing conditions for you to cultivate them, plenty of game animals to trap or hunt, loads of farm ponds, lakes, streams and rivers with plentiful fishing and the warm, humid climate would make surviving the elements rather easy (just be sure to find someplace on high ground with a good storm shelter) for humans while being a ripe climate for quick decomposition of zombies.

      April 26, 2011 at 7:24 am | Report abuse |
  9. your BABYBOYBRADLEY

    A hero to you? NOT TO US :))))

    Obviously everyone was happy with BABY BOY... and all those other "baby Boys" and are still happy with them

    BABY BOY BRADLEY wanted to be famous and now he is: like Hollywood >

    ITS not child abuse !!! far from it ITS "business as usual" and he is just another comedy like the rest.

    No hero... just another wanna be ruler of the world.

    So then who needs democracy lessons from more such FAKE saints and clearly Hollywood $$$$ ambitions.

    BABY BOY... no one is a man in America until prison > THEN they are declared "real people"... like hiphop.

    April 25, 2011 at 11:12 pm | Report abuse |
  10. pimpull

    do zombies go *pee-pee* or poop ??

    April 25, 2011 at 11:16 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Elizabeth Donner

    I LOVE Brains, but i am not a zombie.

    April 25, 2011 at 11:23 pm | Report abuse |
  12. The Dude

    I'm tired of Obama/Tea party comments on stories that have nothing to do with them. 😐

    April 25, 2011 at 11:35 pm | Report abuse |
  13. RangerUSArmy

    Well at least I got my laughs in for the day. Very good posts.

    April 25, 2011 at 11:39 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Ariel

    So what if your a zombie that has been overbooked and you got a Mac and a Windows pc?

    First you eat the other potential passengers until you can ride. You use your easy to use Mac to order some grub online and then play games on the windows pc until your flight time starts.

    April 26, 2011 at 1:33 am | Report abuse |
  15. Ssan

    I have no clue what is going one with CNN for you guys to have some of the articles you have had lately. that picture is crazy scary. On the other hand........it is pretty awesome and funny. i guess i would be better off reading this than the super depressing news I read every day. At least there is humor in this.

    April 26, 2011 at 2:05 am | Report abuse |
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