Linked by Howard Fosdick on Thu 13th Oct 2011 22:14 UTC
Humor Last month we discussed how computers are portrayed in cultural icons like Lost in Space, Star Trek, The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show, and -- of course! -- that lost gem, The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes. This article continues this essential exploration of American culture with more probing profiles of computers on TV and in the movies.
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RE: IMSAI 8080
by zima on Fri 14th Oct 2011 00:37 UTC in reply to "IMSAI 8080"
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The scale of other sets and props(?) in them - missile bunker for example or, most notably, the command centre - make such budget crunch rather unlikely?

I think IMSAI was chosen largely because it was very "photogenic" - a prominent object, with lots of lights and switches to toggle. Also "niche" & "legendary" & suggesting an "'old' school hacker" ...or maybe also partly because the nerds at hand, among the crew, were able to quickly come up - specifically for this machine - with the required "typing application" (showing the proper, scripted commands and sentences whichever key was hit by the actors; this was used during the filming of Wargames)

Remember, it's a film - so whatever is in it, is not strictly a tool of [the real-life purpose of object], but of cinematography. A film prop meant to look good, be impressive for the audiences, that's its role. A way for actors to... act, to depict the story in a way conductive to mass-consumed, pop-cultural video medium.

Heck, some of the "upgrades" (whichever machine is used) could easily be non-functional - not surplus, but broken trash. There were also less expensive computers at the time, VIC-20 or C-64 for example - but this leads to another possible reason: why would they make free product placement for big companies of the era? (not only Commodore) IMSAI was convenient, it was virtually gone by then already. And much less familiar, much more mysterious.

Edited 2011-10-14 00:50 UTC

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