Back in the dark ages of computing, when you had to keypunch your program into cards, stand in line at the input desk to hand over your creation to the bored college student who then fed them into the card reader (and you hoped he/she didn't drop your cards), and then you waited ... and waited ... and waited for your output.
In between pouring over the FORTRAN code which computed something technical for some course, a popular past-time for some was creating ASCII art. ASCII art is creative use of the text to create an image, e.g.
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I didn't have the artistic ability to create it, but I did appreciate the achievement.
I've run across a site which presents the entire first episode of Star Wars as a ASCII Art Movie. Impressive creativity. Telnet to towel.blinkenlights.nl and watch.