Wayback Wednesday: “Spacewar!” – the first space shooter, circa 1961

Here’s a video (and a linked story) for a space shooter created in 1961 on a PDP-1.

Don’t get your hopes up to play Spacewar! on it’s original home, as only 3 PDP-1′s are known to exist at this time.  However, if you make it down to the Computer History Museum, you can watch someone else play it ;)

It would have been pretty cool to work as a programmer in those days, although the paper tape/punchcards would have sucked…ah, never mind that I said that. I remember my dad regaling me with stories of how just one misplaced card could ruin a whole program if you weren’t careful.

Story comes via: [The Verge] (read it, the story is pretty cool)

“What idiot keeps a permanent marker near his whiteboard?”

The funny part of this story isn’t actually computer related, but the backstory leading up to it was…

The year was 2003 – I was at my previous job, and before we had a really robust AV solution on our systems, we would routinely get infected with viruses. Our company layout was basically a North American hub, connected remotely via 56K (in some locations) all the way up to 512K IP enabled frame-relay…i.e. SLOW. However, most access at the remote plants were basically relegated to Citrix, AS/400 connectivity, with some minor domain replication going on with their AD Domain Controllers, so speed wasn’t needed, but with the very nature of IP enabled frame-relay, it made virus propagation very easy.

Anyway – one day, we had one of our epic virus infections and I was working late to try and clean up systems and view router connection stats. My manager comes in, grabs a marker from his pocket and start hashing out a response plan on my freshly installed whiteboard behind my desk.

We get a hefty bit of info/plan on the whiteboard and my boss puts the marker down on my desk – - I look at it closer – he just used a permanent Sharpie marker on my whiteboard. He immediately realized what he had done and said “What kind of idiot keeps a permanent marker on his whiteboard?” and walks out.

Not that it couldn’t be removed, but didn’t I have enough things to clean up already?

Picture source: [Blitzen the Demoralizer (CC)]

Speaking of being robbed, I want my 5 minutes back.

Just occurred a few minutes ago.

One of my users (one of the big money makers here) walks up and said…”So, I play this game ‘Crime City’ on my iPhone. I can’t seem to play it on our WiFi, so then I have to switch to my cellular connection to play it. If I keep it open, then I won’t get robbed, if I keep having to switch networks, then I get robbed.”

Thinking to myself: “Here it comes…”

“I’d like you to open up the network web-filter thing so I can play my game…I mean, it’s not porn or anything.”

are you kidding me