Tuesday, October 02, 2007


OK I ordered ordered Fiber Optic ISP and Cancelled AOL after just shy of 30 Years...WHOOOAAA! I didn't think I was on the web that long. It was like yesterday with my brothers trying to get a 6502 chip to respond.

Tape storage systems that stretched and you went through hell trying to retrieve the data. Using CPM80 to get systems up and running before Bill Gates bought it from the author and sold it to his mother's workplace making billions since then.

But it was cool writing your own programs and teaming up to figure out how to do things.

My brother built his own rs232 port to get peripherals linked in.

$1,000 per meg of storage on a hard drive when the price came down and memory that was $150.00 to got to 32 K of RAM!!!

My first 8088 then 286 and so fourth. I remember typing a program in to the system and after a week of typing code I jumped for joy, kicking the plug out and loosing everything I got.

My first disc drive was $300.00 from a friend with a switch he put in two read both sides of the disc...That means I had a whopping 720k of space on my drive.

going to a blazing speed of true 8 megahertz clock speed with my Evergreen chip and really flying in style.

Pentiums that broke the gate at $1000.00 per unit at 90 megHZ.

Basic - Cpm80 - Dos 1.0 - MS DOS 3.3 - Dos 5.0 (My Personal favorite) - Dos 6.0 - Windows 3.1 - Windows 3.1 - Windows 95 - Windows 95b se - windows 98 - windows Milenium (Here we went backwards) Jump now to 16 bit Windows NT - 32 bit - Win 2000 pro - windows xp - VISTA! (Now we go a bit backward.

Smart People jumped on Linux and kids that got an Apple in school had their parents by those.

My goodness I seem to remember formatting my Modified Frequency Modulation (MFM) encoding hard disc by start and end, bad sectors, etc..

Anyway it was a struggle to keep those drives up and running with voltages and bad sectors cropping up on flimsy software. Thank Heavens for Peter Norton in the early years. His was the only software that truly worked. Somewhere along he line they lost it though and others stepped up to the plate.

Then the shareware, Wow that was cool. People went to those early computer shows buying software up like junkies going to the pusher man. I was one, yes. Couldn't wait to see what each author was going to do.

Anyway I see those years were spent in the world of repairs and building and learning every software under the sun. Watching the evolution and we are still some thirty years later working on bad chunky software that is prone more now to bad clusters and viruses then it ever was.

And yes Apples have been about 8 to 12% of the computer market til they crashed and Bill Gates threw some millions there way to take the heat off him. Then they used a ton of dishonest ads like the recent ones that were forced off the air in England for violating the truth in advertising laws. We in the US don't really worry about that, lying on TV is an American way of life it seems. Anyway the should be back to 12 to 16 % about now and so they don't worry about Viral attacks because they are too small for the authors to attack. Now with their guts by LinusTorvalds [pronounced LEE-nus], Linux [Pronounced LEE-nus, he named it after himself but it is so mispronounced now I guess it doesn't matter] Kernel, they are pretty secure but still closed Architecture and twice the dough for te same speed. They run windows software because their was not enough vender's to write for them for a while with such a small market. Music is primary support for Macs but television used mostly Amiga for years and most of the larger studios I worked with, used both Mac and Windows units.

Anyway Atari would be considered the precursor to the PC crowd. Most every tech I knew over the years cut there teeth on an Atari. With their 800 computer you could actually burn 8 bit EPROMS (used for making Game cartridges). You could write your own program and put it in an EPROM.

They had user groups that flourished on the WELL and Internet. When the WWW came in thanks to Tim Lee in Cambridge (Lot of smart Guys in Cambridge, MA), People had 8086's then There 8088's, I joined with an 8086 to America online and talked with friends in Germany who where on CompuServe. I then Beta tested AOL's new venture GNN and got a lot of free time on the web. GNN had a great browser and the newest Firefox is much like it.

Anyway I am boring the pants off you so I will just say that Computers are here and they are not really going anywhere soon. Once they can get those millions of switches in a cpu to run cooler, we will be looking at multi-chip computers for a while. But once someone figures out how to make a casing that can dissipate heat super fast in a tiny footprint we will be in the true age of robots.

OK I am done rambling...


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