Terrycloth (terrycloth) wrote,

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How Equestria Was Made

When I was a little kid, I loved programming. From the time my parents bought me my first vic 20 I used to spend hours either writing little games of my own, or typing in games out of COMPUTE! magazine or the like and saving them on tapes. But I was always the only other person to ever play those games, because my parents and sister weren't really into computers, and none of my friends ever, um, really existed. At least, not in the sense that I had friends who'd come over to my house to do stuff. I had a couple where I'd go over to their house I guess? But I was never confident enough to invite them over.

But one day in school the computer teacher told us that if we wanted, we could come up during lunch and play with the computers. The intention was that we could play the educational games that were stored in the room -- typing tutors, trivia quizzes, and this weird puzzle-maze thing with a duck -- but I found it more fun to just type up a BASIC program in the shell and play around with the Apple graphics which were a lot different than the commodore graphics I had at home. You didn't need any arcane POKE and PEEK commands to make things look cool, you could talk to the (gigantic) pixels directly using built in commands! It was so cool!

So I made this silly little worm game -- you know, the sort where you're driving around a snake eating apples that make it get longer and you lose when you hit your own tail? It was dead simple since there was no data storage needed other than the last N locations of the head and the direction the snake was going next; everything else was stored as the color of the pixel. So I got fancy and made it so you steered the worm left and right by 10 degrees at a time instead of right angles.

It was actually pretty fun. And the other kids *loved* it. But I didn't have a floppy disk to save it on, so at the end of the hour when we had to turn the computers off, it got erased. But the next day, people wanted to play it again, so I just wrote the same program again, because it was so *simple* it was *easy*. And did it over and over again every day until I stopped eating lunch in the computer room for some reason or other that I don't really remember.

And that's when I didn't get my programming cutie mark because I'm not a pony. But I *would have*. And then maybe I wouldn't have wasted all that time at math camp and electrical engineering courses when it was *obvious* what my special talent was. n.n
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