In Pictures: Developer divide, 19 generations of computer programmers

From punch cards to JavaScript, computing history owes everything to those who've programmed the machines

Space Shuttle programmers This crew worked with 8086 chips and kept the shuttles running by searching eBay for replacement hardware. The computers may not have had much memory, but they traveled farther than the biggest mainframes and fanciest racks.

Language of choice: Assembly code Special skill: Remembering which register is already swapped to RAM Social media strategy: Logged into Facebook once to friend spouse and neighbor Other career choice: Disco lighting designer Clothing: Leisure suits Rhetorical tic: "If we don't do it, the Russians will win." Car: Cadillac Eldorado Song: Frank Sinatra's "Fly Me to the Moon" Favorite artifact: 8086 chip

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