< Video Roundup: January 2013
Constellation Games Interview in Bookslut >

[Comments] (1) Spacewar! The Interview: Went to the museum last night not for a movie, but to meet Peter Samson and (via poor-quality videoconferencing) Steve Russell, for a conversation about the second video game ever made, Spacewar!.

I asked Russell the question that's been burning in my mind for years: why does Spacewar! have an exclamation mark in its name? His answer: "Once I got it working, I thought it deserved an exclamation point!" I also asked Russell if he considered any other names for the game. "Nope."

No one asked the obvious final question, so I got that one in too: what games are they playing now? Both Russell and Samson are fans of solitaire card games. Russell also said he likes the Android game Tiny Village.

Some other tidbits from the conversation, which I found especially interesting and/or which I don't think are on the net already:

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Posted by Eric Fischer at Sat Feb 02 2013 14:56

Thanks for asking the questions and posting the answers!

It is kind of interesting that J. M. Graetz's 1981 Spacewar piece in Creative Computing mentions photons and torpedos but never together. From Google Books the only early "photon torpedo" reference I can find is the name of a piece of photography equipment, a successor to the "electron torpedo." The first topical usage seems to be Star Trek novelizations in 1972.


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