This Week In Geek History: Steve Jobs Demos the First Mac, Mythbusters Hits the Airwaves, and Dr. Strangelove Invades Popular Culture
It was quite a wild ride for this week in Geek History: Steve Jobs gave a demonstration of the first Macintosh computer, beloved geek show MythBusters took to the air, and iconic movie Dr. Strangelove appeared in theatres and our collective consciousness.
Steve Jobs Gives a Demonstration of the First Macintosh
In the video above a young and bow-tied Steve Jobs gives a live demonstration of the first Macintosh computer. We insist you watch the video and listen to the crowd. The cheering! They’re totally blown away by what we now look at as downright primitive. Why were they so blown away? Because the Macintosh heralded the availability of a functional and consumer friendly GUI on a personal computer. Whatever Apple fans or detractors could say then or now, it’s undeniable that the first Mac represented a way for non-technical users to interact with a computer without the burden of having command line-fu.
Mythbusters Takes to the Airwaves
This week in 2003 MythBusters premiered on the Discovery Channel. The premise of MythBusters is simple: people have all sorts of beliefs about the physical world around them that often sound ridiculous, outlandish, or dubious as best. MythBusters set out, and continues, to take on a handful of myths every episode and put them through various tests. The show is dramatic, the explosions over the top, and the fun Adam Savage, Jamie Hyneman, and their assorted cohorts have is infectious. It’s impossible to watch the show and not want to turn your garage into a mad scientist’s laboratory.
Dr. Strangelove Invades Popular Culture
This week in 1964 saw the release of iconic film Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb. The dark comedy paints a satiric picture of Cold War-era America and pokes fun at everything from the nationwide networks of hamster-tunnel-like fallout shelters proposed by prominent businessmen of the time to the absurdity of Doomsday Machines. Robert Ebert, the fame movie critic, argued that it was the best political satire of the 20th century, the film has been recognized by the American Film Institute four different times, and it has been deemed culturally significant and preserved by the US Congress in the National Film Registry. Most telling about the impact and popularity of the movie is how often it is alluded to or directly quoted in popular culture ranging from children’s cartoons to movies and music. Even if you’ve never seen the movie you’ve, through the widespread influence of the film, seen its hand in hundreds of other films.
Have an interesting bit of geek trivia to share? Shoot us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with “history” in the subject line and we’ll be sure to add it to our list of trivia.
Jason Fitzpatrick is warranty-voiding DIYer and all around geek. When he's not documenting mods and hacks he's doing his best to make sure a generation of college students graduate knowing they should put their pants on one leg at a time and go on to greatness, just like Bruce Dickinson. You can follow him on Google+ if you'd like.
- Published 01/27/11