Chapter 13 

Hackers, Heroes of the Computer Revolution


The West Coast Computer Faire, organized by Jim Warren and Bob Reiling in 1977, was amongst the first signs that a new industry was about to take off and that it would take computers into the houses of ordinary people. Machines like the Commodore PET and the Radio Shack TRS-80 came into the market and sold in big numbers.

The Hacker Ethic fell to the wayside as companies started to keep their hardware and software specifications secret because of the competition. The Homebrew members started to dwindle as many hackers had either formed their own companies or had become employed and could not divulge what they knew anymore. Others were too busy to even attend the meetings. It signaled a shift in the hacker culture.