What hacking AOL taught a generation of programmers #AOL #Hacking

Back in the 1990s, ith a bit of Visual Basic one could make add-ons—or “progs” for the America Online (AOL) service which could be helpful or malicious. And a program called “FateX” could automate punting people offline and more.

Just as a generation of programmers got their start writing BASIC on the Commodore 64, or today’s devs might start by building mobile apps, in the 1990s a generation of programmers got their start by building AOL progs. “If it wasn’t for the AOL prog scene, I probably wouldn’t have become a programmer,” says software developer Patrick Gillespie. “It’s how I discovered that I enjoyed programming and that I was good at it. It changed the whole direction of my life.”

Open source collaboration is the norm today, but the prog community had to learn open source principles on their own. A thriving community emerged where developers shared code, collaborated on projects, and helped each other learn. Though most progs weren’t technically open source—they were often released with no license at all and sometimes included pirated software—the community demonstrated an open source ethos, building on each other’s work or teaming up to create software they wouldn’t have been able to build on their own.

Learn more in the in-depth in the article here.

Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.

Join 35,000+ makers on Adafruit’s Discord channels and be part of the community! http://adafru.it/discord

Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.

Join us every Wednesday night at 8pm ET for Ask an Engineer!

Follow Adafruit on Instagram for top secret new products, behinds the scenes and more https://www.instagram.com/adafruit/

CircuitPython – The easiest way to program microcontrollers – CircuitPython.org

Maker Business — Chip inventories rise as demand falls

Wearables — Go insane with a membrane (button or keypad)

Electronics — Shift away from basic arithmetic

Python for Microcontrollers — Python on Microcontrollers Newsletter: CircuitPython 8.0 RC 1 Out, Board Guides, and Much More! #CircuitPython #Python @ThePSF @micropython @Raspberry_Pi

Adafruit IoT Monthly — Cat Doorbell, Deep Algae Bloom Detector, and more!

Microsoft MakeCode — MakeCode Thank You!

EYE on NPI — Maxim’s Himalaya uSLIC Step-Down Power Module #EyeOnNPI @maximintegrated @digikey

New Products – Adafruit Industries – Makers, hackers, artists, designers and engineers! — JP’s Product Pick of the Week 1/31/23 Feather RP2040 Scorpio NeoPXL8 Driver @adafruit @johnedgarpark

Get the only spam-free daily newsletter about wearables, running a "maker business", electronic tips and more! Subscribe at AdafruitDaily.com !

No Comments

No comments yet.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.