In writing up the book thing yesterday, the toughest question was about which books mean a lot to me. I kept trying to think of a book that I could point to that led to my being so interested in computers. There wasn’t any book that did it, though. Rather, it was computers themselves. I remember the computers we had in school, mostly really old TRS-80s like this Model III. I was not only obsessed with using computers, I was obsessed with misusing computers. Our lab of TRS-80s was on a primitive LAN, and the main goal of my friends and I was to gain unauthorized access to something. We were never very successful, mainly because our methods were primitive.
If there is one thing that fueled my obsession with computers, it was the movie Wargames, which I was completely obsessed with. It was after watching that movie that I became obsessed with having a modem and my own phone line (my parents never let me have either) and calling BBSes. I had to satisfy myself with customizing BBS software (cnet for Commodore 64, which was the thing back in the day) in case I ever did get to run my own BBS. Anyway, I look back on that time and realize that having a career centered around Web applications was almost inevitable.