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OT: Anyone remember this?

Daddy Dee

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Our first home computer was a Commodore Pet 16k. What a hunk of steel that was! Monitor connected to the top of the computer. Dad paid $750 or so and that was probably 1980/1981. I bought my first PC in 1990/1991 for about $1500. 386Sx20; 2 megs of ram and probably VGA graphics along with a dot matrix printer to boot. I added another two megs of ram about a year later for $85. Contrast that to the 500gig EHDD I just picked up for $120. Amazing.


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Oh crap, when I think of that first machine - good grief, I am running a full bandwidth fiber optic broadband, dual core SLI rig with a little better than a terabyte in multiple striped RAID array, dual flat panel monitor on floating arm, blue-ray/DVD sweetness, 4gb overclocked ram, with water cooled Zalman lusciousness, two POS music and (family) picture servers (doing double duty as a game server), with wireless repeaters all over the house, 3 printers, two scanners, dedicated digital camera for light box photos, and that is just in my man cave! It is all just too crazy. No wonder I just buy old worn out used big box heritage speakers, I can't afford the *really* good stuff...

Just kidding!


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Yep, its crazy isn't it?? I remember finding the very first issue of Computer Shopper magazine at my local library a while back. It was ridiculous what the prices for everything in there were.

Years ago my uncle ordered a 386 computer that came with 1 megabyte of RAM, he upgraded the RAM to 2 megabytes and it cost him an extra $1000!

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Right then:

1976 School - 2 mainframes one of which was an enormous ICL. Reel to reel tape machines, ticker tape, programs on cards the whole bit.

The best part was shutting it down. This was a process that took about an hour as you had to shut down each piece of software separately (and they wouldn't always). Anyway if it worked the last command was "Die" and the whole thing would power down with all the fans and bits coming to idle. I'd guess the background noise level dropped from over 95 dB to about 40 dB in about 10 seconds - really cool.

Anyway - that got upgraded a year or so later with 2 removable 20 Mb drives. Each drive unit was about the size of a laundromat waching machine and the disks weighted about 15 lbs each. By 1978 or so it was one of the most powerful computers in England supposedly. I think it had 64 or 128 Kb of RAM and supported upto 300 users on terminals and the programming language was ALGOL (what happened to that??)

When I came to Greece I bought a new server for our office (1993). If memory serves the 1 GB SCSI disk for the server was about $7,500 in a mirrored configuration.

In comparison - I am about to get a new portable for my wife - it has a 250 Gb disk as standard and 2 Gb of RAM (upto 4).

Come to that I have a 4 Gb SD card in my phone that cost about $90 or something. The card is the size of my thumbnail as it is the oldest version of the SD cards. Newer Versions (Mini SD's) are half the size and the latest version (MicroSD) is half that size again. Frankly those are too small - I would lose them in seconds - but you can get 20 of them in a matchbox I am told.

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10 INPUT "How many cards do you have "; N
20 PRINT "Jeez, you really have "; N;
30 PRINT " cards?"
40 REM
50 FOR I = 1 TO N
90 A$ = LEFT$(A$,1)
100 IF A$ = "Y" OR A$ = "y" THEN 120
110 GOTO 10

What passed for computer programming in 1979...

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Wrote my first computer program in '69 on this NCR 315 model. (The women really dressed up for work in those days, huh?).

The computer room was chilled to 65ºF at all times, and was really noisy.

In the late '70s, I used to date a girl who did data entry. Whenever she and her co-workers complained that their fingers were cold, they were just told to work faster...

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