More computer hacking:
Where did it begin and how did it grow?...
As the Vietnam War winds down, the first flight simulator
programs in history unfold on the Plato network. Computer graphics,
almost unheard of in that day, are displayed by touch-sensitive
vector graphics terminals. Cyberpilots all over the US pick out
their crafts: Phantoms, MIGs, F-104s, the X-15, Sopwith Camels.
Virtual pilots fly out of digital airports and try to shoot each
other down and bomb each others' airports. While flying a Phantom,
I see a chat message on the bottom of my screen. "I'm about
to shoot you down." Oh, no, a MIG on my tail. I dive and
turn hoping to get my tormentor into my sights. The screen goes
black. My terminal displays the message "You just pulled
37 Gs. You now look more like a pizza than a human being as you
slowly flutter to Earth."
One day the Starship Enterprise barges in on our simulator,
shoots everyone down and vanishes back into cyberspace. Plato
has been hacked! Even in 1973 multiuser game players have to
worry about getting "smurfed"! (When a hacker breaks
into a multiuser game on the Internet and kills players with
techniques that are not rules of the game, this is called "smurfing.")
1975. Oh blessed year! Under a Air Force contract, in
the city of Albuquerque, New Mexico, the Altair is born. Altair.
The first microcomputer. Bill Gates writes the operating system.
Then Bill's mom persuades him to move to Redmond, CA where she
has some money men who want to see what this operating system
business is all about.
Remember Hans and Gribble? They join the Home Brew Computer
club and choose Motorola microprocessors to build their own.
They begin selling their computers, which they brand name the
Apple, under their real names of Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs.
A computer religion is born.
The great Apple/Microsoft battle is joined. Us hackers
suddenly have boxes that beat the heck out of Tektronix terminals.
In 1978, Ward Christenson and Randy Suess create the
first personal computer bulletin board system. Soon, linked by
nothing more than the long distance telephone network and these
bulletin board nodes, hackers create a new, private cyberspace.
Phreaking becomes more important than ever to connect to distant
Also in 1978, The Source and Compuserve computer networks
both begin to cater to individual users. "Naked Lady"
runs rampant on Compuserve. The first cybercafe, Planet Earth,
opens in Washington, DC. X.25 networks reign supreme.
More history of hacking-->>