Modern Apps on Old Machines

From: tiborj <>
Date: Fri Jun 27 23:58:06 1997

At 02:52 PM 6/27/97 -0700, you wrote:

>A different thought - I don't really buy the argument for owning a modern
>machine for the purposes of "better" games. But the Web browser thing is
>slightly different, being a VERY powerful and useful communication method.
I agree with you here, and games are fun, but that depends on what you like.
I love the internet, and I learned ALOT from it. sure a shell account with
lynx is nice, as I use it for fast FTP, but when I read about a PDP11, it is
nice to see a picture of one, rather just text.

>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
>a TCP/IP system, but we were debating the possibility of a Web browser.

I have dreamed of writing one, and I don't know if someone else has done it,
and if they did, I would grab a copy right away. The main problem that
everyone forgets is that having limited memory is a pain,
and TCP/IP alone uses 64K in ONE SOCKET ALONE as a buffer.
>The argument I and others made in its defense was, granted the stock
>hardware is incapable of SVGA-grade graphical displays, with appropriate
>decoding, you can get "close" (with sufficient processing time), and if
>you have to "scroll" around to see the entire page, so what?

You have a good point there, and it would work sorta, but patience runs thin
after awhile, as decoding images at 1 MHZ does take 1 min, times that with
10 or so inlines you will find at every web page, and waiting 10 mins for a
page to load would make it a fustrating experiance. heck, on days where
there is severe net lag (especially on fridays), it takes 10 mins for the
data to arrive even for fast machines! <G>
It is a cool idea though, and it would be interesting to see if this can be
pulled off.
>1. Am I correct in what I have heard of the C64 and Atari 8-bitters?
>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?
You dont have to spend this much to have a fast PC (or MAC), all you need is
to hunt around...
AND NEVER BUY RETAIL SYSTEMS!!! like packard smell.....
>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

its not about apps, its about efficincy, and operator comfort. VGA or SVGA
is worth it becuse it prevents eyestrain, and you can use your system for
longer amounts of time. I used color TV's before when I got started, and
serious word processing was painful to the eyes. RGB's are better, but not
by much. also its about speed. The ability to cut and paste is underrated,
as in serious work, it saves gobs of time. I love command line interfaces,
as well as GUI's, but typing long commandlines to just load a directory, its
nice just to be able to type LS -l and get the same result. and if you think
about it, these nice classic machines we love EVOLVED to be the modern ones
we got now, and I understand the resentment of microsnot, as I hate them
too, but I can't understand the resentment of the modern machines. Yes some
say they cost too much, but that can be solved. I see people go gaga over a
PCjr, and while that make a nice collectors item, it is the least usefull
home computer EVER made.
and yes most apps used for home perposes dont need the latest and greatest,
however, a modern machine is far more veratle in the power department, and
the classics are more versatle in the hardware department.
>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?
It is worth the time to develop the software when you need it only if the
results are the same if you used somthing already out there on a capable
machine. I wrote MANY small utilitys for the Commodore, simply because they
did not exist in my area. and while it is fun to do it out of love, it does
get tiring reinventing the wheel all the time. more time went into the
devleopment than in actual use when it was done. I did write a
budget/checkbook balancing program in BASIC, used it a few times, the it got
bit rot, because i never had any money left to manage :)
 all in all, if the machine you use now does all what you want, thats great!
but the day WILL come where you just need to have a feature that you have
not got now. that is just the way the computing cookie crumbles.
Received on Fri Jun 27 1997 - 23:58:06 BST

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Oct 10 2014 - 23:30:31 BST