SPACEWAR

Computing Dictionary

SPACEWAR definition

games
A space-combat simulation game for the PDP-1 written in 1960-61 by Steve Russell, an employee at MIT. SPACEWAR was inspired by E. E. "Doc" Smith's "Lensman" books, in which two spaceships duel around a central sun, shooting torpedoes at each other and jumping through hyperspace. MIT were wondering what to do with a new vector video display so Steve wrote the world's first video game. Steve now lives in California and still writes software for HC12 emulators.
SPACEWAR aficionados formed the core of the early hacker culture at MIT. Nine years later, a descendant of the game motivated Ken Thompson to build, in his spare time on a scavenged PDP-7, the operating system that became Unix. Less than nine years after that, SPACEWAR was commercialised as one of the first video games; descendants are still feeping in video arcades everywhere.
["SPACEWAR" or "Space Travel"?]
[Jargon File]
(2004-07-19)
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
Cite This Source
Explore Dictionary.com
Previous Definition: spacewalk
Next Definition: spacewoman
Words Near: SPACEWAR
More from Thesaurus.com
Synonyms and Antonyms for SPACEWAR
More from Reference.com
Search for articles containing SPACEWAR
More from Dictionary.com Translator
Dictionary.com Word FAQs

Dictionary.com presents 366 FAQs, incorporating some of the frequently asked questions from the past with newer queries.

Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature