Brian Dear - The Friendly Orange Glow: The Untold Story of the Plato System and the Dawn of Cyberculture
Cyberculture started with PLATO, the Programmed Logic for Automatic Teaching Operations system, developed in 1960 at the University of Illinois. Before it shut down in 2006, unable to compete with faster, newer programs, PLATO had worldwide distribution and had influenced modern concepts in multi-user-computing including the technologies behind flat-panel wall TVs, touch-sensitive screens, instant messaging, screen savers, multiplayer games, flight simulators, crowdsourcing, interactive fiction, and more. Dear, a tech-startup entrepreneur who worked on PLATO for five years, details PLATO’s definitive role in the Digital Age and profiles the brilliant young computer visionaries who built and ran it for four decades.
Prior to Eventful, he was founding Director of eBay Design Labs. Other gigs included: Eazel, MP3.com, FlatWorks, RealNetworks, Birdrock Media, and Coconut Computing. He started using the PLATO system in 1979, when he sent his first email.