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The WarGames IMSAI
October 26, 2007 11:35 PM   Subscribe

A (too?) in-depth article on the IMSAI 8080 featured in the movie WarGames. [more IMSAI images and info at 1000bit, the Obsolete Computer Museum, Erik Klein's Vintage Computers, and good ole' Wikipedia]
posted by jtron (12 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
UNF. UNF. UNF.

*languidly smokes, enjoying the afterglow*

(Please add "nerdporn" tag, thx.)
posted by loquacious at 11:38 PM on October 26, 2007 [1 favorite]


How again was the 8080 a step-up from the 8800? Panel switching?
posted by sourwookie at 11:42 PM on October 26, 2007


Yes, jtron, it's too. But in all the right ways.
posted by mumkin at 12:28 AM on October 27, 2007


Mister Potato Head! Mister Potato Head! Back doors are not secrets!
posted by GavinR at 12:51 AM on October 27, 2007 [1 favorite]


Bottom line is the Imsai people are producing incredibly geeky Series Two for the 80s nostalgics. From what I understand it mixes old and new hardware.
Is this the new steampunk?
posted by darkripper at 2:58 AM on October 27, 2007


Best (geekiest) part: It seems that they had forgotten the programming sequence for the keyboard and none of my people had remembered the special keyboard coding. Matthew Broderick saved the shoot by eventually recalling the sequence and experimenting with the ESCAPE key

That must have been ironic/hilarious/awesome.
posted by blacklite at 4:53 AM on October 27, 2007


Back doors are not secrets!
Larry Craig's is.

Remember when I told you to tell me when I was acting rude and insensitively?
posted by WolfDaddy at 6:44 AM on October 27, 2007


Looks like the 1000bit website's been haxxored.
posted by The White Hat at 8:53 AM on October 27, 2007


What about the WOPR? I would love one of those for the house.
posted by Joh at 3:08 PM on October 27, 2007



Is there a website that catalogs and has images of computers used in films? Or maybe there is a documentary film on the subject complete with actual footage.
Anyway I'd enjoy that if someone would do that. I don't think I have the time.
posted by PHINC at 4:41 PM on October 27, 2007 [1 favorite]



IMSAI, the company, was a cult! Yes, it was run by and mainly employed people who had gone through the EST training, that Werner Erhard business that still exists under different names. That little company had a very interesting history...
posted by njohnson23 at 7:43 AM on October 29, 2007


While looking for info on the EST/IMSAI connection I found this article on the company's history. More good reading.

As for EST...
He was a believer in the self-improvement techniques developed by Werner Erhard, called "EST," which he attempted to apply to all situations. EST convinced him that once he had made up his mind to do something it was as good as done. He surrounded himself with people who had "taken the training," and this was a big factor in the accomplishment of bringing the Imsai to market in record time. It was also a factor in the failure to test equipment before releasing it to the market, and the inability to see changes in the market as the technology advanced.
Friction from use of EST-based management techniques also seems implicated in the revolt of ComputerLand (an IMSAI spinoff) franchisees and the chain's eventual demise...
posted by jtron at 10:19 AM on October 29, 2007


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