Watch MIT Hack a Harvard-Yale Football Game in 1982

After months of work, MIT students in 1982 inflate a giant weather balloon in the middle of a Harvard-Yale football game.  They buried the balloon under 3 feet of dirt, and had the whole thing popped out of the ground with a freon-driven hydraulic piston, and inflated the balloon with a vacuum cleaner motor.  They even included instructions on how to dismantle and remove the device so the game could continue.  I love the hand-made drawings used to show how the device worked during the press conference.

via The Verge

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  1. Wantabees – it was Caltech that started the fun in the 1960s. When MIT did the ’82 stunt, Caltech had to fire back, performing the 1984 Rose Bowl stunt taking over the scoreboard to read (among other things) Caltech vs. MIT (instead of UCLA and Illinois). My classmate programmed that one with an 8 bit microprocessor if I remember right, and got class credit until the connection was made.


  2. Loved hearing Bob Lobel’s voice… he’s a Boston Legend… 🙂

  3. cmon now freon isn’t that harmless, I caught my neighbors AC repairman essentially out to lunch hanging out behind her AC unit sniffing all the freon! Seems like they left this part out when explaining freon usage =)

  4. Remember when people could have some harmless (if slightly annoying) pranks (hacks) without having swat arrest them at gunpoint, sent to Guantanamo, and not be charged with being terrorists?

    Now you can’t even wear a watch or a led without being considered the worst criminal in the US

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