Computers: Flying the User-Friendly Skies

Walter Mitty pilots pack up their programs and take off

Actor John Travolta was in the middle of a business meeting with a computer software publisher when someone mentioned Flight Simulator II, a program that puts Walter Mitty pilots into the cockpit of a single-engine airplane. An amateur aviator who flies a small jet out of his ranch in Santa Barbara, Calif., Travolta could not resist taking the disc out for a quick spin. Much to the publisher's dismay, Travolta was still at the computer two hours later, doing daredevil stunts 5,000 feet above Los Angeles in an imaginary Piper 181 Cherokee...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!