University to create NAFISAT & Bentonville virtual environment. ULL also enters into marketing deal with all 4,000 WalMart stores.

Building on the recent successes of NIMSAT, CBIT, LITE, and the partnerships with WalMart and James Lee Witt & Associates, ULL and the Louisiana Congressional Delegation have announced a $147 million grant to launch the National Fashion Incident Systems & Applied Technologies, or NAFISAT.

The concept originated from discussions with WalMart executives, in Lafayette for the launch of NIMSAT. The visiting WalMart officials noted that– on rare occasions– their customers were "less than sartorially correct," and that NAFISAT would provide critical support for them, and all Americans.

"A fashion crisis is a national crisis," a WalMart spokesman noted, "and deserves all the support that a great nation can give. God bless the United States of America."

The project will be a high-fashion virtual environment, appropriately named Bentonville. Conceived as a cross between Second Life, MySpace, "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy," and Donkey Kong, NAFISAT's Bentonville will utilize the supercomputing power of LITE to generate a virtual environment for the average consumer.

"It's quite simple, really," remarked NAFISAT officials. "All your average WalMart customer will have to do is download and install the LINUX operating system, a GNU run-time environment, Java Desktop, the Bentonville software, and a few other easy-to-use software applications.

"Then, users create a life-like avatar of themselves with accurate representations of bone structure, comprehensive body dimensions, cutaneous and subcutaneous skin coloring, and hair color with texture, length, refractive characteristics, and microscopic cross-sectional dimensions. Next, visitors build wire-frame models for clothing items, add CGI characteristics, and apply colors & textures.

"After they have done that for each piece of clothing, jewelry, and fashion accessory in the house, voilà! they're ready to go.  It's that easy.

"We think it will be a huge hit with your average WalMart shopper."

From the comfort of their own homes, users can then venture out into Bentonville in different clothing ensembles. There, other participants known as "WalMartians", will be able to offer completely objective fashion input. "Feedback is everything," project leaders said. "Sure, you'll have the usual spoken and written comments, but we're also including cat-calls, raspberries, epithets, spitballs, rotten cabbage, and even tar, feathers, rails & a rope.

"Let's face it, fashion's serious business."

Bentonville 1.0 is due for release in the Fall of 2010.

WalMart Adds Ragin' Cajuns Line

Taking advantage of the on-campus presence of WalMart executives for the opening of NIMSAT, ULL Marketing officials have signed an exclusive Ragin' Cajuns product line that will be offered in all 4,000 WalMart locations.

According to a press release from the ULL News Services, the first item to be produced will be a string tie. "We weren't happy with the revenue stream that Tabasco had gotten from their ties," ULL sources said, "so we wanted to go with something a little edgier, a little trendier... something that WalMart could sell in its Lower Manhattan stores.

"A string tie just seemed like the way to go."

The string tie will feature, in 50 pt. flaming letters, the phrase "Ragin' Cajuns of The University of Louisiana at Lafayette High," in a striking repeated diagonal pattern.

According to the ULL news release, however, the real eye-catcher to the ensemble will be the slide for the string tie, an inlaid metal medallion bearing the University's "Hot Wheels" logo. "It gave us a chance to completely re-think the Ragin' Cajuns logo," ULL Marketing representatives said. "Manufacturers and retailers have commented to us that ULL is the only school in the whole country with a 5-color logo. And we know they really like that, because they mention it over and over and over and over again.

"So if 5 colors is unique, we decided to go even uniquer."

The new ULL logo will comprise 37.42 colors, and will incorporate new shades such as chartreuse, persimmon, tourmaline, public school beige, toucan, paisley, air, and root grub. Absent from the palette will still be vermilion, however. The bright red-orange shade is "just too weird" according to University Marketing officials.

The second item carried by WalMart will be a ball cap, also incorporating the new ULL logo. The advantage of the new, expanded color palette, the press release notes, is that embroidering the ball caps will require the entire supercomputing capabilities of LITE, giving the research center another revenue stream.

ULL Marketing officials plan a large media blitz to promote the new items, the week after graduation. "It's perfect, because nothing else is going on at that time. So we'll have the complete attention of everyone on campus," ULL Marketing officials remarked.

Projected retail price for the high-fashion string tie is $3.99. Estimated cost for the embroidered cap is $17,429.99. 

Prices subject to change.

(This was an April's Fools Joke.  If you fell for it, well... )