VB and TVAlthough this post's title is VB and TV, we'll talk about BASIC and movies, too.
This is a tiny list of BASIC's/VB's appearances in TV series or theater movies.
The first one is the relation between Disney's TRON and BASIC.
You may not know, but TRON is a BASIC command. It stands for TRace ON. (There was a TROFF, too.)
When trace was on, BASIC would display which line numbers were being executed.
Tron, the movie, was released in 1982 and was one of the first ones to not only use CGI but heavily relied on it.
It had a sequel in 2011 titled Tron: Legacy.
During my research to this post, I stumbled upon a movie I did not watch: From Beyond (1986).
According to IMDb: "A group of scientists have developed the Resonator, a machine which allows whoever is within range to see beyond normal perceptible reality. But when the experiment succeeds, they are immediately attacked by terrible life forms."
The program that opens a portal to another dimension was written in BASIC.
Moving to TV series, CSI: New York's season 4, episode 20: Taxi has a mention to Visual Basic. Unfortunately, it's not a good one...
Cops are monitoring a chat conversation where the killer is taking part.
Realizing it is an online chat, a (supposedly) tech-savvy cop says "I'll create a GUI interface in Visual Basic, see if I can track an IP address."
This is so wrong in so many levels that it has been mocked endlessly in the interwebs since then...
Even so, I'll give you my two cents about it:
- GUI stands for Graphic User Interface, meaning the things one sees on a display that one can interact with, like text fields, buttons, etc.
So, basically, she said, "I'll create a graphic user interface interface (...)".
- Although a GUI would make things better for the end-user, there's no need for it. A command-line utility probably would fit better the bill.
- There are command-line utilities and sites available to do such a thing. You don't need to create one from scratch.
Here is one project, and here some GUIs: 1, 2.
By the way, as it was 2008, they're referring to Visual Basic.NET, not classical Visual Basic.
My last reference comes from Stranger Things' season 2, episode 8: The Mind Flayer.
Our heroes are locked, so Bob sits down and saves the day with his knowledge of BASIC. He whips up a program to find out what's the password to unlock the lab's doors.
This is a nod from the producers to the era the show portraits: BASIC was big during the 1980s.