Neal Sheeran

Rants, Raves, and Geekery

Maybe One of These Was Copland?


As I’ve watched countless movies and TV shows over the years, when some character sits down at a computer and furiously types away to access the all-knowing database, crack a computer network in 6.9 seconds, or zooms a digital image eleventy billion percent and then hits the magic “unpixelate” button, I have always wondered (besides the obvious):

What in the hell operating system are you running?

Seriously, you’re some government minion and that’s not Windows on your machine? I don’t think I have ever seen a character on film or in the movies that worked for the government read an email using Outlook.

I have always thought there was some cabal of Hollywood creative types that sat around and created these multitude of fictional user interfaces. Well, I guess I wasn’t the only one. Via Smashing Magazine on Twitter, I came across Access Main Computer File, an awesome website that is a “visual study of computer GUI in cinema.” A single page that scrolls forever with screenshots of computer screens in movies over the years. And no two are the same, except for the rare examples where an actual Windows or Mac screen is shown.

A version for TV shows would be great too. I’m pretty sure the sixteen different flavors of Law and Order and CSI:Wherever all use some some superkickass, and completely different, operating system to track down the bad guys.