At the time Bill Gates was so obsessed with Minesweeper’s high scores that Microsoft staff had to imagine one he couldn’t beat

Reporter Kyle Orland writes an entire book on the history of Minesweeper (opens in new tab), which I suspect is a much more fascinating topic than it first appears. Minesweeper is one of those games that feels somewhat ubiquitous, always there on whatever computer you’re on, even though it has its roots in Microsoft’s early 90s, specifically the Windows 3.0 era. As part of the book release campaign Ars Technica includes a chapter on those early days (opens in new tab)and a particularly big fan of the game.

Minesweeper first appeared on Microsoft’s internal network in 1990, where various employees were quickly infected (understandably). “It was, needless to say, a very well-tested piece of software around Microsoft,” said Charles Fitzgerald, product manager for the first Windows Entertainment Pack that would contain Minesweeper.

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