Reply to post: Re: One, OK, hundred, I have my doubts

Are you sure you've got a floppy disk stuck in the drive? Or is it 100 lodged in the chassis?

Rol Silver badge

Re: One, OK, hundred, I have my doubts

It is totally believable.

I went from a secondary school with no computers, to an A level computer studies course at my local college.

Prior to starting the course I wandered into the computer room during lunch, where several students were busily engaging with some of the dozen or so Commodore PETs, scattered about the room.

I tentatively sat in front of one of the idle machines and stared expectantly at the flashing cursor under the "Ready" text and wondered "What now?"

So I typed in "What is today's date?"

The response was an instant "Syntax error"

Thinking I'd somehow upset it, I quietly got up and wandered off.

Fast forward some 6 months and nearly every idle computer was running my "idiot" program, which perfectly reproduced the welcome screen, complete with flashing cursor. The program itself went on to capture all keyboard input, reproducing it as expected on the screen while scanning an ever growing list of responses to an ever growing list of "dumb things people type into computers"

And yes, noobies would come in and type "what is today's date" and the program would give the correct answer, hence reinforcing their sci-fi sourced level of computer understanding - that they truly are intelligent machines, which, basically, was the default setting for 99% of the population back then.

Actually. Now I think about it, I recall most noobies walked away from the "playful" interaction with these infected machines grimacing, vowing revenge for the horrid manner in which they had been "talked" to.

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