Own The 8080 That Hacked SAC

WarGames came out 30 years ago this month, the movie where Matthew Broderick’s character thought he’d hacked his way into a game and nearly set off World War III.

IT World reporter Phil Johnson wondered whatever happened to the old computer hardware used in the film, which consisted of these components —

As I wrote last week, [Broderick’s] room featured an IMSAI 8080 microcomputer, with an IMSAI FDC-2 dual 8-inch floppy drive, an IMSAI IKB-1 intelligent keyboard and an IMSAI (in actuality a Cermetek) 212A modem.

He discovered that the fellow who supplied the system for the movie, Todd Fischer, still has nearly all the pieces. There’d been a plan to auction it in London at Christie’s two years ago, but Fischer pulled out for various reasons. However, he wouldn’t mind selling it now for five or six figures.

Fischer also has created an extensive website and written thousands of words of technical neepery about the WarGames computers. Lots of pictures there, too. And for the rest of you internet connoisseurs, he’s included a chunk of verbal abuse from a Hollywood type who disliked being publicly corrected by Fischer about some details of the film’s history.

[Thanks to Steven H Silver for the story.]

7 thoughts on “Own The 8080 That Hacked SAC

  1. I never saw the movie and hardly remember its coming and going. Was it such a big splash in popular culture that anyone cares what became of its prehistoric hardware? I’m astonished. Me, I’d rather have the prop revolver that deputy Barney Fife carried in the Andy Griffith Show. Now, *that’s* a pop cult icon!

  2. Did he have a gun? I remember he had a bullet he carried buttoned in his uniform pocket. THAT would be the icon….

  3. Barney had a gun in a holster, but although Andy owned at least one pistol and is shown carrying it or a rifle or shotgun several times, Andy didn’t normally wear a gun at his waist (though he is shown so accoutered three times during the first season).

    Wouldn’t you rather have one of the two bicycle horns that Clarabell the Clown wore on his waist box?

  4. I met Matthew Broderick around the time he made the movie, as he was working off broadway on TORCH SONG TRILOGY with Harvey Fierstein, My wife worked the box office for over a year, and I met a few of people people involved. Estelle Getty played Harvey’s Mother (and she was tiny next to Harvey). Matthrew was replaced by Fisher Stevens, and he left the play some time later to make MY SCIENCE PROJECT.

    The computer? If I own an antique, I like it to be able to work. I should be such to talk, as my Mac sits on top of a 1910 Singer Sewing machine frame.
    One time Matthew offered me to smoke a joint. I turned him down.

    The movie? Still good. To me that is. I dunno if it was ever released in Canada.

  5. Barney carried a gun, but wasn’t usually allowed to load it … which is why he carried a bullet in his shirt pocket. Andy might give him permission to load. Andy didn’t usually carry a gun, but when need arose he had a rack of shotguns near his desk. Locked with a chain. He even handed them out to other towns folk in one episode when it looked as though someone might bust into the jailhouse to free friends. Can you imaging Gomer and Floyd with shotguns? Shudder…

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