From: Mike Loewen <>
Date: Thu Feb 17 12:59:16 2005

On Thu, 17 Feb 2005, Vintage Computer Festival wrote:

> Pong Story has a new bit of information I've never seen before.
> Apparently, in 1952 a PhD candidate wrote his thesis on human-computer
> interaction and used the EDSAC's memory tubes to display a tic-tac-toe
> game:

    I don't see any mention on the Pong site about the video (oops,
COMPUTER, he,he) games on the old SAGE (AN/FSQ-7) system. We had a
baseball game, which would display a baseball diamond on the large display

    The pitcher would "pitch" by pressing a button on the scope
console, which would start a spot of light (the ball) moving towards the
batter. At the right time, the batter would press another button at the
end of a cord to swing the bat. If the batter connected, the ball would
fly out and the men would run around the bases.

    I don't know when the baseball program was written, but the SAGE
systems started going into place in 1958. Anecdote: in 1983, some months
before our AN/FSQ-7 was decommissioned at McChord AFB, a couple of techs
were playing baseball on the standby system. In the middle of the game,
the "hot line" rang (from the Senior Director upstairs in the display
room). Fearing a computer problem, they answered the phone, to hear the
SD ask "Who's winning?" It seems one of the scope dopes upstairs had
selected their console over to the standby system, and saw the game
running. The SD thought it was funny.

Mike Loewen
The Dixie Lion Jazz Band
The B9 Robot Builders Club B9-0014
Old Technology
Received on Thu Feb 17 2005 - 12:59:16 GMT

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