Tim Stryker

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Tim Stryker
Tim Stryker from Galacticomm newsletter circa 1996
Born Timothy J. Stryker
(1954-12-09)December 9, 1954
Died August 6, 1996(1996-08-06) (aged 41)
Nationality American
Occupation Computer programmer
Known for

Timothy J. Stryker, better known as Tim Stryker or Stryker (9 December 1954 – 6 August 1996) was a computer programmer, best known as the creator of MajorBBS, a computer bulletin board software package.

Education[edit]

Stryker graduated from Northfield Mount Hermon School in 1972, and received his bachelors degree in physics from Brown University in 1977.

Flash Attack[edit]

Stryker and Ken Wasserman wrote the game Flash Attack for the Commodore PET computer, and developed a cable so that two PET computers could be linked to play against each other.[1] One of the earliest real-time strategy computer games, it was later rewritten for MS-DOS machines, and allowed up to four players in realtime, interconnected modems dialed into MajorBBS.

Aztarac[edit]

Stryker authored the Centuri arcade vector game Aztarac in 1983. Although not a huge commercial success and not produced in large numbers, this arcade game is highly prized by collectors not only for its rarity, but for its graphics. During the attract mode of the game, quickly spinning the spinner control reveals a hidden message in the starfield: "Designed by T. Stryker".

MajorBBS / Galacticomm[edit]

Stryker founded Galacticomm in 1985, and created MajorBBS which supported real-time teleconference, gaming, discussion forums, user profiles (registry), and file transfer sections.

Later in Galacticomm's development, Stryker hired Scott Brinker, originally of Moonshae Isles BBS, who created many of the early games available for MajorBBS, including the original game Kyrandia. The two of them were the heart of Galacticomm.

Electronic Democracy[edit]

Tim Stryker was a staunch advocate of electronic democracy, and began a movement called Superdemocracy to computerize voting and help people follow politics in cyberspace. He dreamed of creating the "perfect society based on compassion and love".[2]

Death[edit]

Stryker suffered from severe depression, and was found dead of a self-inflicted shotgun wound in the mountains of Colorado on August 6, 1996 at the age of 41.

Published works[edit]

  • Stryker, Tim (1993). Think a little (1 ed.). Boca Raton, FL: Cool Hand Communications. ISBN 1-56790-025-9. 

Unpublished works[edit]

  • What Goes Around (1995 - preliminary copy available)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Wasserman, Ken; Stryker, Tim (December 1980). "Multimachine Games". BYTE. p. 24. Retrieved 18 October 2013. 
  2. ^ Short obituary piece including some notes about Stryker's vision for an Electronic Democracy