Do you have adblock enabled?
If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(Some Guy)   Really cool 1972 Rolling Stone article about the worlds first vid game, "Space War". And the birth of the computer age   ( divider line
    More: Interesting  
•       •       •

15911 clicks; posted to Main » on 17 May 2007 at 11:43 PM (10 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

90 Comments     (+0 »)

Oldest | « | 1 | 2 | » | Newest | Show all

2007-05-17 09:36:40 PM  
Wow, this article actually uses the word "disestablishmentarianism."

I always thought that was just made up. Maybe just the "anti-" crowd?
2007-05-17 11:49:38 PM  
That article is way too long. Summarize anyone?
2007-05-17 11:49:38 PM  
wait, whut?

when words that long make sense, I go to bed
mmmmm...booze-fueled slumber
2007-05-17 11:50:11 PM  
Spacewar owns. Always has. Always will.

/pdp forever
2007-05-17 11:51:48 PM  
[image from too old to be available]

Not nearly as early, but still wonderful.
2007-05-17 11:52:56 PM  
Wow, and I used to play that game too along with Pong and Boot Hill.

/get off my lawn
//Is that a dude in the picture?
2007-05-17 11:53:05 PM  
[image from too old to be available]

"wow. cool."
2007-05-17 11:54:22 PM  
FTA: Stewart Brand, 33, is a graduate of Standford (biology).

He wanted to be on the West Coast, or else he would have attended Hardvard.
2007-05-17 11:54:39 PM  

Computers are coming. A neat quote...

One popular new feature on the Net is AI's Associated Press service. From anywhere on the Net you can log in and get the news that's coming live over the wire or ask for all the items on a particular subject that have come in during the last 24 hours. Plus a fortune cookie. Project that to household terminals, and so much for newspapers (in present form).
2007-05-17 11:54:40 PM  

That video game is just about my speed. I miss the HHGTTG game.
2007-05-17 11:55:09 PM  
[image from too old to be available]
2007-05-17 11:56:58 PM  
Good times. I racked up about $1000 in charges on Compuserve playing that sh*t....back in 78? 79?


/shakes cane
2007-05-17 11:57:17 PM  
The computer code at the bottom of the page was much easier to read than the first paragraph of the story. And it captured the moment just as much.

2007-05-18 12:01:58 AM  
IMHO, Spacewar was the first real advance in computer gaming beyond Pong (vector graphics versus raster).

Get off my lawn.
2007-05-18 12:04:15 AM  
Holy mother of God... and gaming was born. Thats insanely awesome, almost too awesome for words.
2007-05-18 12:08:04 AM  
stellar_wench: I miss the HHGTTG game.

A HHG2TG game?! You must tell me what it is called, so I can begin scouring the Internet for a version that works on modern computers. Like the stuff on

/It'll probably end with me cursing the world that it doesn't work on my Mac.
2007-05-18 12:08:36 AM  
Currently re-reading the book 'Hackers' (by Steven Levy), and the whole story of Spacewar is in there.

If you haven't read that book, you should - incredibly interesting book that details the history of the computer revolution, and the people behind it. It was written in the early 80s, so that's where it stops... you'll have to find another book to detail the time from then on.
2007-05-18 12:11:04 AM  
bmihura: IMHO, Spacewar was the first real advance in computer gaming beyond Pong (vector graphics versus raster).

Get off my lawn.

Spacewar was pre-pong...

/I'm on your lawn now, whattya gonna do?
2007-05-18 12:15:04 AM  
I went to an electronics show at McCormack Place in Chicago way TF back in time and saw one of the first public demonstrations of Pong. Entranced I was.

When I got home I told my friend, the millionaire's son, all about it.

So of course, when the TV version with the stick-on overlays was released, he was the first to get it. Me? Not so much.
I had to convince myself that I didn't really want one anyway.
2007-05-18 12:18:10 AM  
Wow. And I thought my Apple IIc was old...
2007-05-18 12:19:54 AM  
0Icky0: I had to convince myself that I didn't really want one anyway.

you'll get over it
2007-05-18 12:21:49 AM  
[image from too old to be available]
2007-05-18 12:22:26 AM  
stellar_wench, Fireproof

You can play the Hitchhiker game online at the BBC Website.

Also check out the Wikipedia article on interactive fiction for some similar games you can download for free.
2007-05-18 12:22:49 AM  
Shoulders of Giants

/missing the pdp-8e
//Could you imagine the Telex paper that the typical Fark thread would waste?
2007-05-18 12:22:58 AM  
five man free for all? sounds like an interesting competition for a lass to win.
2007-05-18 12:23:41 AM  
"You can shoot in FOUR directions!"
2007-05-18 12:25:23 AM  
I remember playing that with my little brother at the ISU computer labs when we were knee-high to Billy Barty.

After a good 30 minutes of blasting away we both looked at each other and said Oh, HECK YEAH!

- What can I say, that was our wildest expletive.
2007-05-18 12:25:45 AM  
One word:

2007-05-18 12:26:04 AM  
I remember reading this in RS when it first came out.

*Takes another slug of Geritol*
2007-05-18 12:27:11 AM  
2007-05-18 12:28:00 AM  
Spending $6 on hour on Compuserve back in the middle 80's playing Megawars III was actually quite fun.
2007-05-18 12:28:55 AM  
Wow, this article actually uses the word "disestablishmentarianism."

I always thought that was just made up. Maybe just the "anti-" crowd?

Nope. And both groups are both still around:

Disestablishmentarianists: Want to see church and state separate and stay separated.

Antidisestablishmentarianists: Claim the disestablishmentarianists are unamerican liberal hippie scum and thus their movement should be thwarted at all turns.

You see them here on Fark all the time.
2007-05-18 12:29:46 AM  
I know I'm showing my age, but what language is that at the end?
2007-05-18 12:31:21 AM  
_: Not nearly as early, but still wonderful.

It is dark. You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

I love reading about the birth of the industry. Thanks, submitter!
2007-05-18 12:34:09 AM  
My big brother played computer games at University of Michigan in the early 70s. The games played out move by move on green striped computer paper. I remember one was called Lunar Landing, and you had to control your ship, one move at a time to land.

He would bring home the big stack of perforated paper, covered in asterisks and other characters representing the ship and the lunar surface. A painfully slow game, but it enthralled him. Heck, I was enthralled at looking at the paper. I remember thinking how incredible it was that my brother, just a normal student, had access to an actual COMPUTER!
2007-05-18 12:38:01 AM  
This could be a watershed moment in media similar to when the Internet finally arrived in the mind of the public with this cartoon:

[image from too old to be available]

Cartoon by Peter Steiner. The New Yorker, July 5, 1993 issue (Vol.69 (LXIX) no. 20) page 61
2007-05-18 12:38:46 AM  
Is Hardvard as prestigious a school as Yaled?
2007-05-18 12:41:52 AM  
The legends say that a young hacker named Ken Thompson got a hold of a discarded PDP-1 computer and wrote an operating system for it from scratch JUST so he could play SpaceWar at home. He named the operating system UNIX and it evolved into what we call BSD, Linux, and OS X.

Of course that was before the Great Patent War destroyed the economies of the Western World and plunged half the planet into the Third Dark Age.
2007-05-18 12:41:53 AM  
Tabatha Static [TotalFark]
[Image of a Zenith/Heathkit terminal]

The first computer I ever used had six of those. And a Hazeltine 1500 terminal.

/Get off my lawn!
2007-05-18 12:42:41 AM  
Desperately seeking a Flash version of spacewars.

Surely someone has made one?
2007-05-18 01:01:20 AM  
[image from too old to be available]

This chap in the foreground was a man--a man--in 1972. And nobody would've bat an eyelash about that. Crazee gendar-bendar stuff going on while these video gamez was bein' invetizized.
2007-05-18 01:01:57 AM  
Ummm BlackBrain... Linux was written by name man named Linus.

/farking geek
2007-05-18 01:05:26 AM  
I just spent the last year learning 8bit assembler again on my Atari 800 by programming a sudoku game. I love my 8bit.
2007-05-18 01:06:51 AM  

[image from too old to be available]
2007-05-18 01:12:38 AM  
This chap in the foreground was a man--a man--in 1972.

I was almost ready to hit that. Yikes!
2007-05-18 01:18:41 AM  
ahh i was just using one of those the other day!
2007-05-18 01:19:13 AM  
Ahhh, FuzzySkinner I remember lunar lander. I also played a version of Star Trek and the mini galaxy would print out on the paper.

The one program I enjoyed from that time was an attempt at an AI type program, it was a paranoid computer. You would ask it questions and stuff and it would type answers back, usually questioning your motives and if you were a member of the mob. We had to use the 300 baud modem to connect, it sucked when it got so paranoid it would hang up.

/get off my lawn
2007-05-18 01:23:04 AM  
Stinky Pinky

He was talking about the creator of UNIX, which Linus Torvalds then used as the basis for linux.
2007-05-18 01:28:58 AM  
Stinky Pinky
/farking geek

If I was a real geek I would have called it GNU/Linux.
2007-05-18 01:29:49 AM  
Since huge quantities of information can be computer-digitalized and transmitted, music researchers could, for example, swap records over the Net with "essentially perfect fidelity." So much for record stores (in present form).

This guy was a farkin' genius. Someone please give him a cookie, kthx.

/Ottawa lied
Displayed 50 of 90 comments

Oldest | « | 1 | 2 | » | Newest | Show all

This thread is archived, and closed to new comments.

Continue Farking

On Twitter

Top Commented
Javascript is required to view headlines in widget.
  1. Links are submitted by members of the Fark community.

  2. When community members submit a link, they also write a custom headline for the story.

  3. Other Farkers comment on the links. This is the number of comments. Click here to read them.

  4. Click here to submit a link.