The dying art of computer viruses

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From Gramam Cluley [1]: In those days, it was often hard not to be aware that you had a virus. The New Zealand virus declared ‘Your PC is now Stoned!’, the Italian virus bounced a ping-pong ball across your screen, and the Maltese Casino virus played Russian Roulette with your file allocation table.

Sure, all of these viruses were irritating – they spread without your consent, and ate up system resources – but only some of them were deliberately destructive. In many ways, a lot of the malware could justly be compared to an electronic form of graffiti – the Green Caterpillar, for instance, which crawled across your screen, eating up letters and pooping them out in a shade of brown.

Even as malware turned nastier and more destructive, there was still some art to be seen. Virus-writing gangs like Phalcon/SKISM used colourful ANSI-style art to declare that they had infected your computer. Viruses like Phantom, with its use of 256-colour palette cycling and displaying a large skull, and Spanska, with its simulated flight across the Mars landscape, probably demonstrated a high point for art in viruses.

Working of a Virus


Setting up the lab environment

A virus in processing

It is even possible to write a virus in processing. See an example in the WdKA Github, but remember, for educational purposes only. Use with care!