Find The Spam

Find The Spam is an internet legend at this point, like zombo.com and Homestar Runner, although it’s much less well-known. It is a game, sort of. It is fun to play, for a couple of seconds at least. I won’t spoil any more, go see it now.

You could see it as a riff on hidden object games, although it predates them by two decades. While the Wayback Machine‘s earliest archive of the site is from 2001, it already had over 1.3 million views by that point. My own recollection is of seeing the site on a Windows 3.1 installation, meaning it may go as far back as 1994.

A recreation showing how the site would have been presented at the time.

The joke is slightly ruined on current machines. Viewed on older graphics cards (with resolutions of 800×600 or even less) the user would have to scroll down a little to see the image, and so would have time to read the intro text before it is revealed. Weirdly, on my Samsung tablet even more of the page is visible on first load, the screen seems positively anxious to spoil the joke for me.

By the way, can you tell I’ve been on an early web binge lately? You can expect more old-timey game sites in the near future….

Find The Spam

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