24 Things You Learn About Computers From the Movies
1. Word processors never display a cursor.
2. You never have to use the spacebar when typing long sentences.
3. All monitors display 2 inch high letters.
4. High-tech computers, such as those used by NASA, the CIA, or some
such governmental institution, have easy-to-understand graphical
5. Those that don't will have incredibly powerful text-based command
shells that can correctly understand and execute commands typed in
6. Corollary: You can gain access to any information you want by
simply typing "ACCESS ALL OF THE SECRET FILES" on any keyboard.
7. Likewise, you can infect a computer with a destructive virus by
simply typing "UPLOAD VIRUS." Viruses cause temperatures in
computers, just like they do in humans. After a while, smoke
billows out of disk drives and monitors.
8. All computers are connected. You can access the information on
the villain's desktop computer, even if it's turned off.
9. Powerful computers beep whenever you press a key or whenever the
screen changes. Some computers also slow down the output on the
screen so that it doesn't go faster than you can read. The *really*
advanced ones also emulate the sound of a dot-matrix printer as
the characters come across the screen.
10. All computer panels have thousands of volts and flash pots just
underneath the surface. Malfunctions are indicated by a bright
flash, a puff of smoke, a shower of sparks, and an explosion that
forces you backward. (See #7, above)
11. People typing away on a computer will turn it off without saving
12. A hacker can get into the most sensitive computer in the world
before intermission and guess the secret password in two tries.
13. Any PERMISSION DENIED has an OVERRIDE function.
14. Complex calculations and loading of huge amounts of data will be
accomplished in under three seconds. In the movies, modems transmit
data at two gigabytes per second.
15. When the power plant/missile site/whatever overheats, all the
control panels will explode, as will the entire building.
16. If you display a file on the screen and someone deletes the file,
it also disappears from the screen. There are no ways to copy a
backup file -- and there are no undelete utilities.
17. If a disk has got encrypted files, you are automatically asked
for a password when you try to access it.
18. No matter what kind of computer disk it is, it'll be readable by
any system you put it into. All application software is usable by
all computer platforms.
19. The more high-tech the equipment, the more buttons it has. However,
everyone must have been highly trained, because the buttons aren't
20. Most computers, no matter how small, have reality-defying
three-dimensional, real-time, photo-realistic animated graphics
21. Laptops, for some strange reason, always seem to have amazing
real-time video phone capabilities and the performance of a
22. Whenever a character looks at a VDU, the image is so bright that
it projects itself onto his/her face.
23. Computers never crash during key, high-intensity activities.
Humans operating computers never make mistakes under stress.
24. Programs are fiendishly perfect and never have bugs that slow