Modern Apps on Old Machines

From: Sam Ismail <>
Date: Fri Jun 27 17:20:13 1997

On Fri, 27 Jun 1997, DAVID L. ORMAND wrote:

> I have heard that the C64 and Atari 8-bit machines now have graphical Web
> browsers and PPP clients running on them. The TI community is working on
> 1. Am I correct in what I have heard of the C64 and Atari 8-bitters?

A guy named Andre Fachat created a simple TCP/IP implementation on the 6502
and a simple Web server.

> 2. Is this a reasonable argument for "home computers" being fit out for
> browsing? Or is it silly when $2000 (maybe even below $1000) can get you
> a Web-capable peecee?

I would love for my Apple ][ (not //gs) to be able to browse graphical web
pages, but a) the machine is barely fast enough for a TCP/IP
implementation and b) the graphics are very low resolution and would not
look nearly as pretty, plus they would eat away more CPU time that the
TCP/IP driver would need. However, this has not stopped me from seriously
considering writing a graphical web browser for the non-GS Apple ][s, if
I only had the time. :)

> 3. What other apps are there that are REALLY useful for home use that
> modern machines have and "home computers" don't? And is is really
> impossible to do these tasks on "home computers"? Is it worth the time
> and effort (even out of love) to write the software, or even create the
> new peripherals, to enable the old iron to do the job?

None really. Even speech recognition, which will take the world by storm
in a years time was capable on some early home computers. I have a speech
recognition card for my Apple //e that could recognize a simple
vocabulary, although nowhere near the scale that the new recognizers can
do (ie. continuous speech recognition).

Basically, there is no application today that computers 10 years ago
couldn't do. Its just that today they do them (mostly) better and
(mostly) faster (I say "mostly" because, for instance, it takes longer for
MS-Word to boot on my pentium 100 with 32megs RAM than a word processor
did on my Apple ][).

Computer Historian, Programmer, Musician, Philosopher, Athlete, Writer, Jackass
Received on Fri Jun 27 1997 - 17:20:13 BST

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