Tag Archives: war-games

War Games

I just read GeekDad’s review of the new Karate Kid. We’re looking forward to seeing it, and in preparation, we FORCED the kids to see the original, which they declared to be a waste of their precious time. The Gril, in particular, claimed that she just couldn’t relate to a movie that was set *SO LONG AGO*.


Speaking of not being able to relate, last night we watched War Games on NetFlix. Everything about it is outdated, from the technology, to the political situation, to the lack of security at NORAD, where folks can crash a Jeep through the front gate, run into the facility, and not be immediately either shot or thrown into custody, and then permitted to take the reins of a major international crisis. Nice.

I remember seeing this movie in the theater when it came out and being absolutely horrified by the language. I believe I was 12 at the time, and I believe it was the first or second movie that I had seen in a theater in the USA. I went with my parents. I can just imagine, in retrospect, how they must have wanted to crawl out of their skin as I was exposed to foul language that I had probably never heard before outside of whispered giggled conversations in the dorm room late at night.

The notion that a teenager could simply dial a phone number and enter a single-word password, and get into NORAD is … well, actually pretty plausible. Except now it’s even easier, since you don’t need a modem, and you don’t need to spend all day test-dialing numbers. It’s really a marvel that nothing of this scale has happened in real life. That we know of.

What I like about War Games, the second time around, is how the hacker aspects of it are presented realistically, and the tools of the trade aren’t over-geekified, but just presented as they actually were at the time.

Um. No. I never broke into any computers. At least, not that I’m willing to tell you about. Except that one in Australia. Once.