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Old 01-16-2019
a9127 a9127 is offline
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Default Old PC Technology

Many of us have worked in "IT" or a related field. All of us at one time or another have been affected for better or for worse by the "offerings" from Microsoft, Apple, Cisco, Motorola, etc. or the many PC manufacturers who have come and gone through the years. Thought it might be fun and different to share experiences with some of the earliest technology that you have used. Feel free to post anything--good or bad...

I got my start with computers long before I was ever in school by helping my dad with reports and calculations for his work (Sales Executive for GM). He had a "T1" line and if I was "good" I was allowed to spend time on it. It turned out to be good experience for what I do today. One of my earliest memories is using '"Lotus 1-2-3". Perhaps the "granddaddy" of all PC-based business applications. The first version I remember ran under "DOS" and used the "CGA" graphics color scheme.

(Note to younger members... The "82" on the chart refers to "1982.")
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Old 01-16-2019
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The first computer I used was a Commodore 64. It had two 5-1/4" floppy drives. One ran the program in use and the other was used for saving files. The monitor was a portable tv. I only used a very basic word processor, but I thought it was just the greatest thing ever and much more fun to use than a typewriter.
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Last edited by ila; 01-16-2019 at 08:19 PM. Reason: Made a correction and added photos
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Old 01-17-2019
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In my office, I have an antique IBM PC/AT motherboard, 20MB Hard Drive, Paradise "EGA" card, and 1.2Mb floppy drive from my first "real" computer that was passed onto me by my Dad way back when... The "AT" used an Intel "286"processor running at a blazing 8Mhz. We added the "287" math co-processor and extra memory through an "Above Board." DOS's limit was 640K but Lotus 1-2-3 could taake advantage of it. The Hard Drive has been disassembled and has the date "1985" stamped on it. I'm going in later today, I'll take some pics. Why I kept it I'll never know. The computer is almost as old as I am... My students are amazed that that they had computers back then.

By the way, ila's "Commodore 64" with real floppies was quite advanced for it's time. My very first computer was a "Vic-20" with cassette drive my mom found on sale at K-Mart. One Christmas I got a "Microcomputer Trainer" from Radio-Shack that taught "assembly language." So that's how a career was born.

My Dad had a Compaq DeskPro 386 (about $10,000 back then) and a "T1" line paid for by General Motors. I used to help him with stuff before I was even in school. If I was "good" I was allowed to use it for fun. Not that there was much to do then (alt.binaries.erotica). The "T1" was a digital phone line and would be like the 80's and 90's "high speed Internet." They are still around.

God I feel old that I even remember what all this stuff was.

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Old 01-17-2019
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In the early '90s I was moving into a job that involved a lot of work on computers. My Commodore knowledge wasn't enough to get by in my new position. I was advised to take some courses to get me up to speed so I went on a course that was conducted on weekends only. For a long time I thought that the computers we used on the course were Atari, but I'm not so sure anymore.

The course taught DOS, a pretty basic word processor, Lotus 1-2-3, and db III+. I really hated db III+ as it was the most awkward program to be able to do anything.
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Old 01-17-2019
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These antiques should bring back memories both good and bad...

IBM "AT" motherboard. This "monster" had an Intel 286 processor running at 8mhz. Considered "blazing fast." For 1984...

Paradise "EGA" graphics card. An "upgrade" from the awful Cyan Magenta White palette of "CGA" this standard allowed 16 colors at a time (if memory serves me) from a total of 64. Enough to show "dirty pictures." Well almost...

IBM thought a "High Capacity" 5 1/4" floppy would be enough for the future. They were wrong... The date of manufacture? May, 1985.

Computer Science textbook from 1969. This was given to me by a professor who retired the year I first started teaching. It means a lot to me and occupies a special place on my bookshelf. Interestingly, the algorithms, data storage concepts, and system design principles are still valid 50 yeas later.

Anyone know what this is? There was a time that everyone had to access the Internet through a "Dial Up" connection. If you know what "RS-232" is you get an "A". Class dismissed...

How about these? Know what they are used for? No, of course not. Everything is wireless now. The date on the case says "June 2001."

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Old 01-17-2019
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It looks like I get an A. Make that an A+ as I not only know what an RS-232 cable is, but I used them and repaired them.

I know the tools in the tool case quite well as I've used them for work and not just at home for my own purposes.

To go back a really long ways (for the computer age) I remember when base 2 arithmetic was introduced in the primary grades at school. We were told it was because we were now in the space age and not the iron age. At the time no one (teachers and pupils) knew that the arithmetic was to be the basis on which we were to learn all about computers and computing. Of course at the time computers weighed a few tons, occupied complete rooms, and were only used by big corporations and utility companies.
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Old 01-20-2019
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ila View Post
The first computer I used was a Commodore 64. It had two 5-1/4" floppy drives. One ran the program in use and the other was used for saving files. The monitor was a portable tv. I only used a very basic word processor, but I thought it was just the greatest thing ever and much more fun to use than a typewriter.
My first computer was also a c64, but with a tape drive still...
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Old 01-20-2019
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Originally Posted by ila View Post
It looks like I get an A. Make that an A+ as I not only know what an RS-232 cable is, but I used them and repaired them.

I know the tools in the tool case quite well as I've used them for work and not just at home for my own purposes.

To go back a really long ways (for the computer age) I remember when base 2 arithmetic was introduced in the primary grades at school. We were told it was because we were now in the space age and not the iron age. At the time no one (teachers and pupils) knew that the arithmetic was to be the basis on which we were to learn all about computers and computing. Of course at the time computers weighed a few tons, occupied complete rooms, and were only used by big corporations and utility companies.
Ila gets an "A+." Well done.

My own students (college) don't know "Base 2." They also don't think we landed on the moon. I help my nieces (8 and 10) with their homework. They are both very smart. But the math problems are like "circle the picture with five cats." Or "count to 100." The 10 year old is starting to do multiplication and division.

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Old 01-20-2019
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Originally Posted by liesjeversteven View Post
My first computer was also a c64, but with a tape drive still...
You and ila both have me beat. My "first" was just a lowly "Vic-20" hooked up to an old color TV via an adapter that attached to the antenna. Like you, I had the "tape drive." I am jealous of ila that he had an actual disk drive.

Did either of you have the "VIC-Modem"?

The "oldest" computer I have ever used was a "NorthStar" running "CP/M." Its case was made of wood (Hehe..hehe...hehe he said "wood"). It belonged to one of my professors in grad school. He said he bought it in 1979. It was still running after all those years! He let me try using "WordStar." I wrote a memo to him updating my research proposal then printed it off on an equally ancient "dot matrix" printer.

(Fun fact: WordStar used the S, E, X, and D keys for "cursor movement." )
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Old 01-20-2019
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Originally Posted by liesjeversteven View Post
My first computer was also a c64, but with a tape drive still...
Quote:
Originally Posted by a9127 View Post
You and ila both have me beat. My "first" was just a lowly "Vic-20" hooked up to an old color TV via an adapter that attached to the antenna. Like you, I had the "tape drive." I am jealous of ila that he had an actual disk drive.

Did either of you have the "VIC-Modem"?

The "oldest" computer I have ever used was a "NorthStar" running "CP/M." Its case was made of wood (Hehe..hehe...hehe he said "wood"). It belonged to one of my professors in grad school. He said he bought it in 1979. It was still running after all those years! He let me try using "WordStar." I wrote a memo to him updating my research proposal then printed it off on an equally ancient "dot matrix" printer.

(Fun fact: WordStar used the S, E, X, and D keys for "cursor movement." )
I didn't own the C64 that I used. It belonged to my boss. I asked so many questions about it that he told me to learn how to use it.

I've seen a couple of old tape drives, but I've never used any.

The first computer I ever bought was a Gateway 2000 486 33Mhz. I almost bought a 286 from someone I knew that was selling it, but then I saw an advertisement for a new 486 and it was cheaper than the used 286.

The first modem I ever used was on radio teletype circuits. At a guess I would say it was 15 inches wide by 10 inches high by 18 inches deep and weighed around 20 pounds. It wasn't a digital modem as radio teletype back then was analogue.

The first digital modem I had was when I got my internet connection. It weighted a couple of pounds (if that much) and was about the size of my two hands together. I've been through a few more versions since then with my current one being the size of one of my palms and weighing just a few ounces.

I've heard of Word Star, but never used it. My first printer was a wide carriage dot matrix and I had a 24 pin cable that connected it to my computer.
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Old 02-05-2019
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Back in 1954 this was one possible "vision" of what home computers of the future might look like.

Made by RAND Corporation, it was expected to be in use by 2004! According to the caption, it was "easy to use" with its Teletype interface and Fortran language.

My favorite part is the "wall mounted display."
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Old 02-05-2019
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Originally Posted by a9127 View Post
Back in 1954 this was one possible "vision" of what home computers of the future might look like.

Made by RAND Corporation, it was expected to be in use by 2004! According to the caption, it was "easy to use" with its Teletype interface and Fortran language.

My favorite part is the "wall mounted display."
That "wall mounted display" looks like an old tv that I once had.

I got a laugh from what looks like a ship's wheel on the computer. I wonder if RAND thought their computer had to be steered.

I'll bet the energy consumption of that was measured in MWh.
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Old 02-06-2019
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I remember of seeing pictures of computers in the 50's. They were as big as a room.
My brother used a computer in the late 60's. He put in a program , punched in a long code of numbers and letters for what seemed like twenty minutes. Then pushed one more button and the screen went totally red for 3 seconds. That was the program !
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Old 02-07-2019
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ila View Post
That "wall mounted display" looks like an old tv that I once had.

I got a laugh from what looks like a ship's wheel on the computer. I wonder if RAND thought their computer had to be steered.

I'll bet the energy consumption of that was measured in MWh.

Somehow the prospect of watching Internet porn on that doesn't seem so appealing. Wait, there wasn't any "Internet" back then!

I wondered about the "ship's wheel" as well. It kind of reminds me of an old movie I once saw about submarines. Looks sort of like the "control room."

Thinking the same thing. Wonder how much power "one in every household" would consume?

(Also Fortran isn't exactly "user friendly" and was mostly used in engineering applications. I can see entire families sitting around this thing at night writing code together... Mom: "Andy what are you doing in your room with the door locked?" Me: Trying to generate a picture of Marilyn Monroe. "Just 1057 more lines of code left, mom!")

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Old 02-14-2019
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Default My Very First Computer

My very first computer was a sliderule. They were quite good and fast for multiplying, dividing, and trigonometry. The C and D scales were especially useful. I'm quite sure I could find that when I was proficient in using one that I could multiply or divide two numbers faster than someone using a calculator.

I've attached 3 sample pictures so that those that are unfamiliar with a sliderule know what one looks like.
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Old 03-01-2019
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Cisco 2500 series router. Have one similar to this sitting on a shelf in my office. Some company donated several to our school. I earned a CCNA years ago. Don't really work with this stuff anymore. Kept one just for fun. Who remembers "token ring"?
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Old 03-02-2019
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Cisco 2500 series router. Have one similar to this sitting on a shelf in my office. Some company donated several to our school. I earned a CCNA years ago. Don't really work with this stuff anymore. Kept one just for fun. Who remembers "token ring"?
Token ring - now there was a flashback to a nightmare of trying to understand what was meant by token ring when the person explaining had no clue himself. 'And, by the way, there's a test on this tomorrow.' Talk about having to hit the books.
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Old 03-02-2019
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Simple "token ring" example from 2001.

(My students find it amazing that computers once were connected with wires... )
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Old 03-02-2019
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I remember those diagrams (not those particular ones, but similar).
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Old 03-05-2019
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Not a PC, but certainly "older" technology. In 2004-05, the phone to have was the Motorola "Razr" V3. I had the standard "silver" one but my "ex" had to have a "pink" one. Just like Paris. That's either "cute" or "ick" depending on how you see it. Fifteen years later I'm strongly leaning towards "ick."

Word is now they are coming out with a "foldable" Razr V4 smartphone. Estimated price: $1,500 USD. Must have one... Must have one... Must have one...
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Old 03-06-2019
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Before smartphones there were smart pagers. RIM kicked off the revolution in texting and mobile email access with their 900 series pagers with full text capability. My job at the time required me to carry a 950 model shortly after its introduction.
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Old 03-10-2019
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Before smartphones there were smart pagers. RIM kicked off the revolution in texting and mobile email access with their 900 series pagers with full text capability. My job at the time required me to carry a 950 model shortly after its introduction.
I never wore a pager but I know many people who did. "RIM" would go on to make the "Blackberry" line of smartphones until they were beaten out by Apple and of course the "Androids." I had a Blackberry 9800 at one point. Everything I've owned since then has been a Samsung Galaxy.

But I think this guy has surpassed everyone for collecting old technology.
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Old 03-12-2019
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I never wore a pager but I know many people who did. "RIM" would go on to make the "Blackberry" line of smartphones until they were beaten out by Apple and of course the "Androids." I had a Blackberry 9800 at one point. Everything I've owned since then has been a Samsung Galaxy.
I had an alphanumeric pager before I had the RIM. The advantage to having a rim was that it could send messages instead of just receiving them. RIM's innovation led to texting and email capabilities on phones and eventually to the smart phone as we now know it. The advances in portable computing (smart phones) were extremely rapid during this period.

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That's quite the collection of boat anchors that he has.
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Old 05-05-2019
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Default Dec pdp 11

the Digital PDP 11s were a hoot. The paper feed DEC Writers gave you a hard copy of all your keyboard interaction. Now where did I put those logs from the early 80s.
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Old 06-05-2019
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Default Technology Flops?

From PC Magazine. “The Biggest Software Flops of All Time.” How many of you remember any of these?

I remember some of them. Netscape and Joost for example. And I had a Palm Pilot. Mine was the color m505 from 2001. Before “smartphones” that was what you had to do. The most useful thing about it was when I drove across the United States with my first wife in 2004, we were able to download all maps to it and plan our routes. We didn’t have a “navigation” system in our vehicle back then. But the Palm could take advantage of GPS. I paid a lot for it.

Even worse, I remember and actually used “Mosaic.” That was in the earliest days of the “Web.” Maybe 1993? A graphical browser! Awesome! Younger members might like to see what a “Web Page” in 1997 looked like. There is an example of one in Netscape 6. My first “Web Site” was designed in grade school and called “Andyz Home Page” I had a lot of stuff on me and school and sports activities plus pictures of my family on vacation. Also a section on exotic “carz.” Remember this WAS “social media” back then!!!

Of course I remember upgrading to Windows Vista in early 2007 (at major expense). I had just started my “technology” blog then. One of my first articles was a review of Vista. I wasn’t kind. I documented that it had “crashed” necessitating a total restart (and losing everything) no less than 23 times…

Here’s the link:

https://www.pcmag.com/feature/345740...m_medium=title

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I remember when Netscape came out and it was the best there was at the time. It was easy to use. I never had a problem with it. The MS started bundling IE with Windows and before anyone realized it Netscape was gone. I also remember the big uproar caused by MS when IE became a basically free program. The world was going to end, but obviously it hasn't.

There was a lot of hype around Vista when it came out. I had friends who jumped right on it and then started complaining about it. By the time I got Vista a lot of the problems had been fixed plus computers had advanced enough that Vista worked quite good. I used Vista until the computer I had broke down due to hardware failure. I think ME was a much worse version of Windows than was Vista.

Harvard Graphics wasn't mentioned and I don't consider it a flop. I do wonder what happened to it as it was easy to use and had features that PowerPoint wouldn't have for many years.
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Default CueCat

I will see that list of flopped software and raise it by a muted meow from the widely panned CueCat!

The Wikipedia article is kind compared to the comments I remember in the day:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CueCat
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I will see that list of flopped software and raise it by a muted meow from the widely panned CueCat!

The Wikipedia article is kind compared to the comments I remember in the day:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CueCat
I remember these! We had one. Think it came to my Dad in the mail. Probably because he subscribed to Forbes.

The "nose" scanned the code. Never used it. We have it somewhere... probably in a box in the garage.

"QR" codes and smartphones have made this obsolete. Besides it used a wire. Even in 2000 it was clear the next thing was to eliminate that. Never knew they invested $185 million in it.
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I think ME was a much worse version of Windows than was Vista.

Harvard Graphics wasn't mentioned and I don't consider it a flop. I do wonder what happened to it as it was easy to use and had features that PowerPoint wouldn't have for many years.
Windows ME always puzzled me. There was of course 95, then 98, then ME. I remember "98" as a worthwhile upgrade. But I always wondered if "ME" was only released to take advantage of the hype surrounding "Y2K." It was supposed to stand for "Millennium Edition." No one I know knew whether it should be pronounced "M E" or "mee." I never used it, instead installing "Windows 2000" which was based on the more robust "Windows NT." It's funny that "XP" would come out shortly after in 2001 and be around for so many years. I know businesses that still rely on it.

Harvard Graphics was awesome. The company was probably late in porting it to "Windows" in the 90's or people were just too easily satisfied with PowerPoint. I have found in Business, in general, it's hard to get away from the "Office" suite. That may change in the future.

But do you remember the "Paper Clip"? Maybe one day the "digital assistant" will look like the "Real Doll" I configured in the "Dating" thread.
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Windows ME always puzzled me. There was of course 95, then 98, then ME. I remember "98" as a worthwhile upgrade. But I always wondered if "ME" was only released to take advantage of the hype surrounding "Y2K." It was supposed to stand for "Millennium Edition." No one I know knew whether it should be pronounced "M E" or "mee." I never used it, instead installing "Windows 2000" which was based on the more robust "Windows NT." It's funny that "XP" would come out shortly after in 2001 and be around for so many years. I know businesses that still rely on it.
I always pronounced ME as the two separate letters. I liked XP a lot. It worked so well that many people I know would not give it up until their computer died and they had to upgrade because their new computer came win an OS other than XP. Yes, I was one of them.

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Harvard Graphics was awesome. The company was probably late in porting it to "Windows" in the 90's or people were just too easily satisfied with PowerPoint. I have found in Business, in general, it's hard to get away from the "Office" suite. That may change in the future.
Harvard Graphics was slow to go to a Windows version, but even after it did PowerPoint in any version would not convert HG Windows to PowerPoint.

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But do you remember the "Paper Clip"? Maybe one day the "digital assistant" will look like the "Real Doll" I configured in the "Dating" thread.
I remember that annoying paperclip all too well. Like BOB, it always popped up at the most inconvenient time and far too often. I was glad to see that paperclip finally disappear.
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Old 06-13-2019
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Default IBM Reinvents the Z Mainframe—Again

Not everything is “in the cloud.” “Mainframe”? Remember those? They’re still around…

This was in my inbox this morning. From “eWeek”:

Quote:
“In essence, the reason that the mainframe has thrived for well over a half century is because IBM has reinvented it time and again to support the evolving needs and business requirements of its enterprise customers. That ability to evolve in order to support the evolution of others is clear in the Tailored Fit Pricing for IBM Z offerings that the company announced this past week.

So how exactly has IBM altered the mainframe over the years? For the first three decades, the company’s path was fairly conventional. The mainframe, after all, began as a digital complement to the mechanical calculators and other transaction-focused business machines that were central to IBM’s success. Over time, new technologies, including increasingly powerful database and middleware offerings, were used to extend the mainframe’s ability to support and extend emerging business applications.

Then in the mid- to late-1990s, IBM began exploring uncharted territory with its decision to formally and financially support Linux and other open source technologies, beginning with its (then named) zSeries mainframes. The decision was not universally popular—in fact, some IBM board members believed Linux would destroy the mainframe’s value. History proved those naysayers to be as utterly wrong as they were shortsighted.”
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Old 07-14-2019
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This was in my Twitter feed this morning. Party like it's 1985! Fuck yeah. Riiight. More like "gag me with a spoon."

This is "Windows 1.01." If you used a PC back then, you either ran "DOS" by itself or "Windows" that acted as a shell providing a "user friendly" interface.

That "game" is called "Reversi" and appeared on several later versions of windows well into the 90's. I used to be really good at it. How many remember playing it?

I actually sort of like the colors. I think to get this color scheme you had to have an "EGA" card or else it would appear in B/W. Both at an "amazing" 640X480 pixel resolution. My current "desktop" back home uses a "4K" display.

My first real interaction with Windows would not come until 1990 with the "much improved" Windows 3.0. By then, it was posible to get a "VGA" display and have resolutions up to 1024X768, still OK for some applications today. But most monitors of the time were only 14" or 15".

NEC offered a 17" Multisync that I (with money earned from doing computer projects for other people) paid over $1,500 USD for in 1995. Think of what you could get today for that. When we moved out of our old offices last year our university's "IT" department had to call a "recycling" service to dispose of it safely. All monitors back then were "CRT" design. Think "Die Hard" where Bruce Willis uses a monitor strapped to a chair to detonate the explosive in the elevator scene. I'm sure my university would not have appreciated me tossing it down one of our elevators. Although the thought did cross my mind.

Finally, my "favorite" Windows 3.0 theme. This was called "Flourescent" and what I used most of the time. There is also a bright red and yellow theme called "Hot Dog Stand" that still has fans today. I've seen versions for "Windows 10" even. Buy really, why would you want that?
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Old 07-16-2019
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In the earliest days of PC’s, long before YouTube, Twitter, and “Social Media” ever existed, everybody knew that personal computing technology wasn’t ever going to be used for anything “good.”

“Astrotit” was a popular “shareware” PC game from 1987. Especially revealing of just how “primitive” graphics were back then is that each of these screenshots is 320x200 resolution, common for many monitors of the time. Compare it to the screen you’re currently using. Amazing isn’t it?

Note the “Cyan Magenta White” color palette. Unless you owned an “EGA” graphics card, that was it. Until “VGA” became standard a few years later. Offering up to 1024x768 resolution and “unlimited” colors, VGA was the first to be able to show real pictures. Most of them dirty…
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In 1992 I had a state of the art 14 inch monitor with a 640 x 480 resolution. My VGA card would display 16 colours.
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Had to think about what the "oldest" working piece of technology I own is. I think it is a Casio fx-11 "Scientific" calculator from 1974.

This belonged to my dad. I last "fired it up" sometime last year. It takes 4 AA type batteries. Power switch is "iffy" but if you wiggle it enough it will turn on.

One of the most interesting features is the green flourescent tube display and the "little" zeroes. So "ninety" looks like "9o."

(Pictures courtesy of Casio)

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Had to think about what the "oldest" working piece of technology I own is. I think it is a Casio fx-11 "Scientific" calculator from 1974.

This belonged to my dad. I last "fired it up" sometime last year. It takes 4 AA type batteries. Power switch is "iffy" but if you wiggle it enough it will turn on.

One of the most interesting features is the green flourescent tube display and the "little" zeroes. So "ninety" looks like "9o."

(Pictures courtesy of Casio)
I couldn't help but notice the ℼ key. I checked my handheld calculators and none of them, including the scientific versions, has that key. The various calculators on my computer do. Even my old slide rules had ℼ marked on them. It's so much faster to do a lot of calculations if the key/mark is there rather than having to remember 3.1416 or divide 22 by 7.
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Old 07-28-2019
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I couldn't help but notice the ℼ key. I checked my handheld calculators and none of them, including the scientific versions, has that key. The various calculators on my computer do. Even my old slide rules had ℼ marked on them. It's so much faster to do a lot of calculations if the key/mark is there rather than having to remember 3.1416 or divide 22 by 7.
I never paid attention to that before but you are right. I have a "TI-84" in a drawer in my office that I never use. Think you have to press the "2nd" key to get ℼ.

Anyway, here's the "real deal." It still works. Hardest part was finding 4 "AA" batteries around the house. All our remotes take "AAA." Came to life right away. Not bad for 45...

On this calculator, ℼ is 3.141592.

The instructions are yellowed and crumbling. Hope I don't forget how to use it.

And you can see the "little zeroes" I was talking about.


To put this all in perspective. In 1974:

Skylab was still active. It would fall back to Earth in 1979.

The US speed limit was 55 MPH (about 88 kph).

Nixon (US President) was embroiled in the "Watergate" scandal and facing impeachment. He would resign in August.

In April, tornadoes caused many fatalities in the mid-west United States during what was known as the "Superoutbreak." It wouldn't be surpassed until 2011.

"California Jam" took place featuring many hard rock bands of the era. Black Sabbath featuring Ozzy was one of the headliners. You can find the entire thing on YouTube.

"Streaking" was popular around the world.

ABBA was very popular. "Waterloo" was #1 in the UK (Agnetha ).
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A little bit of calculator humour.
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The reason why if you've ever tried to sort numbers on your computer and got a string that went like this:

1, 10, 11, 100, 101, 2, 20

is because Bill Gates and, by extension, Microsoft don't know how to count.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ila View Post
A little bit of calculator humour.
Well, that has always worked for me...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ila View Post
The reason why if you've ever tried to sort numbers on your computer and got a string that went like this:

1, 10, 11, 100, 101, 2, 20

is because Bill Gates and, by extension, Microsoft don't know how to count.
Good one! Forgot there was a "Windows 2.0." I included some screenshots. Especially like the "floppy disk" icon. The early version of Excel: "Fiscal Year 1986." And is that chart not impressive? Um... No. And of course "Miami Vice." I think it was the #1 show on TV back then. Fast cars and women.
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Well, that has always worked for me...
If all else fails that what I also do.


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Originally Posted by a9127 View Post
Good one! Forgot there was a "Windows 2.0." I included some screenshots. Especially like the "floppy disk" icon. The early version of Excel: "Fiscal Year 1986." And is that chart not impressive? Um... No. And of course "Miami Vice." I think it was the #1 show on TV back then. Fast cars and women.
Those are some good screenshots.

I think the floppy icon is a 5 1/4" disc; when floppies really were floppy.

I'm thankful for the early versions of Excel. They showed me that working with a spreadsheet program was very easy. As the programs got more complex I easily adapted to the changes because of the background knowledge I had.
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Old 09-02-2019
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From computer antiquity. These disks are older than many of my friends. Older than my wife… Older than me? Well almost… Sadly, no.

Ila, yes that is a 5¼” floppy icon on the Windows 2.0 screen. Here’s a couple of rare “finds.” Knew these were around somewhere. Had to go digging in our garage this morning. Might take these in to show my students. They, like me now, store everything “in the cloud.” I still use a USB drive for backup but almost everything I do for school or work is stored on-line so I can get it anywhere, anytime.

Except for that stuff… Sorry, no “early porn.” I’m sure if I did have it my mom or my “ex” threw it away long ago.

The first two disks are a “promo copy” of Excel that was sent to my dad. Copyright 1988.

I remember installing this for him. On a “Compaq 386.” He didn’t know how. Sorry dad... One of my earliest experiences with “Business” software. The “Computer Whiz Kid” certificate I posted a long time ago (also from 1988) was from our principal. I helped him with a project. That was back in Kindergarten. Who knew these would mark the beginning of a career? Academics and sports are the only two things I’ve ever been any good at.

The other is an original copy of Tetris. Copyright 1987. In Russian! Will have to play it with my friend Aleksandra sometime. She needs to visit the USA.

Published by Spectrum HoloByte. Russia was known as the USSR (CCCP) back then. The box even featured the “hammer and sickle” logo. Sorry, don’t have it anymore. Very historical. As I remember, it was much more fun to play than any of the “modern” versions. Like what's on my phone.

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On thing that stood out for me on the Excel discs was "Copy Freely." That used to be normal. Now users are threatened with legal action if they copy some things. Times sure change.

One time back in the early days of PCs I took a 2 day word processing course. Sitting in a corner of the classroom was an old computer that was no longer used. This computer stood out for me because it used 8" floppy discs for storage as compared to the (at that time) ultra-modern 3-1/2" discs.

I've attached a picture to compare the 8, 5-1/4, and 3-1/2 inch discs.
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ila and others might enjoy these "old" computer books I found in my office today. The "77"on the Fortran Book means "1977." Older than me by several years but looks to be in much better shape. Another text I "inherited."

"Hacking Exposed." Don't get your hopes up the title is much more intriguing than the text. Got it free at a conference. Around 2007.

"Disaster Recovery." Younger members, the cover picture is of the remains of the World Trade Center on 9/11/2001. Jon Toigo is a friend of mine. Got this at a seminar I attended years ago. Good reading.

Back in the days when I was still trying to learn more about the "IT" thing. From 2003. Was still listenening to "nu-metal." See the post of my "flexible" friend in the "Dream Girls" thread. She was part of an "ad campaign" I did with our Marketing majors. We placed #1 in the nation. When I was still very young, I learned the big money was in using technology to create something, or make a business run more efficently, or pull valuable information out of the tons and tons of data generated with every transaction... Not in fixing the damn stuff. It becomes obsolete and you are best off throwing it away and replacing it. It's not the 70's anymore.

Well then again... Some skills never "grow old." This book is titled "Mathematics For Data Processing." Another "inherited" book but I am old enough to remember the term "Data Processing." Long before the Internet, Social Media, "Smartphones," "apps," "wi-fi," and free porn.

And this antique... The first "web server" I ever set up. It was for a class project. Ran an early version of Red Hat Linux. If I remember correctly our "team" named it "fight club." Of course we did. I've hung onto it for years for sentimental reasons. Even carrying it through the snow to my new office on campus. It's older than my students.

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Originally Posted by a9127 View Post
ila and others might enjoy these "old" computer books I found in my office today. The "77"on the Fortran Book means "1977." Older than me by several years but looks to be in much better shape. Another text I "inherited."...

...And this antique... The first "web server" I ever set up. It was for a class project. Ran an early version of Red Hat Linux. If I remember correctly our "team" named it "fight club." Of course we did. I've hung onto it for years for sentimental reasons. Even carrying it through the snow to my new office on campus. It's older than my students.
Speaking of old computer books I still have Peter Norton's Inside the PC 5th Edition. It was published in 1993. There are 3 chapters on DOS and another one on Windows (which was still very new at that time). I've hung onto it for sentimental reasons as well as the odd snippet of information that is still relevant today.

I got my network administrator qualifications in what now seems like another lifetime. Back then network operating systems were all DOS based (my qualification isn't from Novell). I actually enjoyed typing all instructions on the command line.

I remember one instructor telling us that passwords were buried deep in the system and that no one would ever find them. That sounded like a challenge so I went exploring. It was interesting what I found in the file system, but I never did find where the passwords were stored.
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Old 10-13-2019
MistressStevie MistressStevie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ila View Post
I remember one instructor telling us that passwords were buried deep in the system and that no one would ever find them. That sounded like a challenge so I went exploring. It was interesting what I found in the file system, but I never did find where the passwords were stored.
In 1983 on Digital PDPs that we had at college the password and permissions file was findable in the rudimentary network we used at the time.
I edited the permissions file preferences for myself to have a much wider view. Then I remember changing peoples passwords when they forgot theirs. The CS instructor kept saying that it was not possible. But in many ways we all knew very little then compared to today.
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Old 10-13-2019
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Default Old computers!

Like most of you guys, I have been cutting my teeth back in the 1980's. Back then, I used all sort of machines. Like C64, Amiga and early Dos PC's. I still use C64, Amiga and Dos PC's today, as they are my hobby. I have like 4 Amiga's and a couple of C64's and then 6 AT machines and 2 ATX machines. (286, 486's, Pentium, Pentium3 and Pentium 4) Then tons of spare hardware in boxes and so on.
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Old 10-14-2019
a9127 a9127 is offline
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The Norton Utilities “Disk Editor.” This was Version 7.0.
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Old 10-14-2019
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I am of the belief that anything can be found. A simple "deep scan" of my PC this morning turned up the following. Wonder why this would be on my computer?
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Old 11-17-2019
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Don't ask me why I was browsing for stuff like this as a 14 year old.

http://www.jeff-goldsmith.org/amusingrefs.html

Or why I came across it today... Guess I was just curious to see if the page was still out there. Had been talking about "search engines" with a friend and somehow remembered this and wanted to see if it was still around. It was.

Here's a screenshot of "Alta Vista" from 1997. You know, before there was Google. I used this a lot for school (and other things obviously ). Anyone else remember it?
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