I’m in the Computer Science building at the University.
You might wonder what’s a chemistry professor doing here.
And the answer is that 30 years ago,
I had a mad idea.
My children had just started playing computer games
And I suddenly thought
why don’t we make computer games for chemistry.
I hired two schoolboys during the summer.
They made a floppy disk
with the games on it.
Just after that,
there was a conference of science teachers at Nottingham.
So I set up a little store,
selling the computer disks.
My children were sitting in my office,
duplicating the disks as fast as they could.
And I was selling them for two pounds each
and I got so much money in my pockets
that the pockets gave way.
Money poured out down my trouser legs.
It’s the only time I’ve owned real cash for the University.
And for 30 years,
I had the disks in my filing cabinet.
And every so often, I looked at it nostalgically,
convinced I would never see the games again.
And then a few weeks ago,
Steve Bagley from the Computer Science
came to my office.
And I showed him this disk.
And he said, “I might be able to make it work.
I have an old computer.”
So now I’m here, in Computer Science,
to go to Steve’s office,
to see if I can play the games from this disk on the computer.
I‘m now in Steve Begley’s office,
in our Computer Science department,
here is a BBC Micro,
or BBC Master.
I got this computer I spend too much money on the eBay?
Probably is… the best of it.
Now I like collecting old computers
those of you who’ve seen me on Computerphile
will probably see in my collection.
I can say so.
Are these like a rarity, like hen’s teeth,
or are operating BBCs pretty common still?
So I think most BBC Micros are pretty common.
These… still these days they’re in a lot of schools.
So still a lot that survived, people collect them.
They were still in use controlling that sort of timetable displays
on British railway stations until a few years ago.
Steve, when someone gives you an old disk,
what were you thinking like? You’ve got no chance.
Well the disk like this, it depends how it’s been stored.
The photo that Martin gave me looking pretty……
But it’s in his filing cabinets. It’s all right.
I’m pretty hopeful that it would work.
The dangers really are that it’s been too hard to spit in a magnetic field
or something that is wiped, the information.
Sometimes the disk degraded, or you get mold growing on them,
but generally as long as you still got the media
and can find a drive that still works to play it in
you can usually try and get something off
for ease you will be able to see the damage if not.
How do you… I’ve forgotten, how to start it?
Ok, so um… the first is to put it into the disk drive,
which is… just put it in drive 0.
– 把它推进去……- 然后用小按钮关上
-So you push it in….-And then close with the little flap.
Ok, something like this. The usual way is you hold down shift and
press the break key and then let go break.
– 哇- 它启动了
-Wow!-And it starts up.
– 太令人兴奋了- 听听它的声音
-This is really exciting.-That sound.
Computer was a lot more visceral in those days.
They made noises and they sort of you heard them going.
So it’s not quite centered on the screen.
是的 BBC Micro 的显示屏坏了
Yeah… They… the monitor for the BBC Micro died,
so I had to wire up a little circuit to plug into my Atari one put in.
So it isn’t quite centered.
This is the welcome screen from our video games.
The disk that you’ve actually got
was they’ve got here was sponsored by the pharmaceutical company.
That pharmaceutical company’s Glaxo
who made enough disks,
so that we could send one to every school in the country.
And the picture shows a stylized picture of the University campus.
This is meant to be the chemistry department
and some people boating on the lake,
and this is the tower where the Computer Science used to be.
Though when this was written
there wasn’t a Computer Science department.
It was still taught in maths.
Martyn, what was your…
你很久没看到它了 看到它出现在屏幕上 你有什么感觉？
you haven’t seen this for a while, what was the feel like seeing it pop up the screen?
I mean it’s like going back to my youth.
Nearly 30 years.
Steve, more critical eye.
– 这个……- 第一印象是？
-Well, that’s…-First… first impressions?
I think I was going back to my youth
as being a school kid and getting software like this to play.
I don’t think I would use this when I was doing my chemistry a-level.
But I certainly saw things similar to this,
so yeah, it brought back memories for me as well.
You have to press the any key.
So we have three games here,
周期表 选择题 诺丁汉大学化学系
Periodic Table, Multiple Choice and Chemistry at Nottingham.
The information on the courses.
I don’t think we need to look at the Chemistry at Nottingham at the moment.
You know what one I want.
– 不是！是周期表- 哈哈哈……
-No! Periodic Table.-Hahaha…
Okay. Let’s go.
Which should we try?
Perhaps we begin by displaying the full Periodic Table,
just to see what happens.
Those were the days.
– 要不要进去看看？- 好啊
-So should we try and see it?-Yeah.
Let’s have a look at silicon.
Yeah, of course.
And then hit the question mark.
Oh, yeah, look at that.
Well, it’s quite technical, isn’t it?
– 还有……- 再看看金吧
-And……-Let’s check up the gold.
You can set information in this, don’t you?
I think, I think they’ve cheated.
I think they’ve got the same thing for quite a few elements here.
Perhaps they were running out of storage space.
I want to see what it says for francium.
Doesn’t have very much on francium, but it has something.
There’s a game where you get to fill in the blanks on the periodic table.
Maybe number two, I think.
So, three User Defined Tables
we’d have a randomly blank table.
Go on four.
what percentage do you think?
Well, I think we’ve got too high,
we’ll take forever to……
-Yes. -So in the video we’ll go on longer than Dave Brailsford.
– 是的- 我们来尝试大概5%吧
-Yeah.-So let’s get for about five percent or so.
– 6%会有点难度- 好的
-Six would be adventurous.-Okay.
Six percent with blank.
– 多少……- 120秒 也就是2分钟
-And what…-120 seconds that’s given 2 minutes.
Well there’s a blank in the first row.
If I can find the cursor,
so that should be quite easy. That’s carbon.
Alright, you got one.
And then under tin is lead,
antimony is bismuth,
to technetium, ruthenium,
the Russian element,
and then osmium and then…
– 这个是……- 这个有点难
-This is…-That’s hard.
I think that one is rutherfordium.
Was it rutherfordium there?
There’ve got a Lw there, isn’t that? Is that?
– 铹- 我以为那个是Lr
-Lawrencium.-I thought that was Lr.
It may have changed since then.
What number is that? What number’s einsteinium?
– 是99 对吧？- 99
-That’s at 99, isn’t it? -99.
– 100 102- 还有30秒
-100, 102.-There’s 30 seconds left.
It’s not curium.
Seaborgium, I think.
No. What happened?
You’ve got five out of seven in 111 seconds.
You scored 232.
This is the best part.
So I didn’t, I didn’t make it.
You’re not in the Periodicity Hall of Fame, professor.
– 真是无缘- 是啊
If you are not in the Periodicity Hall of Fame, who is?
I don’t know.
The reason I’ve had this chance to play these games
is because I was talking to Steve,
who is a star of one of our other channels,
Computerphile, about computing.
And he had the computer.
I had the disk and bingo.
But he can’t do the games.
And if you want to watch Computerphile
there’ll be links on screen
and there are links in the video description as well.
And there are opportunities
to try and play this game online as well,
if you really want to.
I then copied them via a floppy disk onto my Mac,
using the floppy drive over here.
And then, I can use a BBC emulator.
How many emulators can be run at the same time?
嗯 很多个 其实……
Em… quite a lot, in fact that…