Classic Computer Rescue Squad

From: Lawrence Walker <>
Date: Sun Nov 9 04:26:08 1997

On 8 Nov 97 at 10:27, Sam Ismail wrote:

> On Sat, 8 Nov 1997, William Donzelli wrote:
> > Well, Carl beat me with this point - history is _far_ more than just
> > numbers. For example, how many ARPANET machines were ever in service? How
> > many NSFnet machines? (About 40 for the curious ones out there). Yet look
> > what THEY did - somehow I think that 500 years from now people are still
> > going to talk about the start and explosion of the public global network.
> > I would think that would certainly qualify as "socially significant".
> 500 years from now, if what I am trying to accomplish with the Vintage
> Computer Festival succeeds, the machines which were truly significant from
> a social context, meaning the ones which ran the banking system, the
> airline system, government, etc. (in other words, the computers which were
> the foundation of modern society), will be the ones which we remember, and
> the Altair and others of its ilk will be merely novelties.
 Oh say it isn't so. Hopefully the machines that are remembered will
be those that were socially significant and architectually
innovative, not those whose influence was popularity re: the
accumulation of corporate lucre.
> But that's 500 years from now. Or perhaps not that long. I say less than
> 50...perhaps even less than 20.
 Hmmm . Have you ever read Jack London's "Iron Heel" in which he
predicts 500 years of fascist rule ?

> > > Whether Novas are "wanted" is immaterial to the argument. Folks are
> > > now virtually unaware of a piece of history, and an important one at
> > > that. It's also a piece of history that's fast disappearing, which is
> > > a rotten shame.
> >
> > If something is not wanted now, it may be wanted later (almost for sure,
> > with bits of history, when they are "rediscovered"). All to many times, it
> > is too late - did I just here someone mention Univac?
> The only thing I disagree with about your statement is that it "may" be
> wanted later. That's wrong. It WILL be wanted later. It is important to
> hang onto EVERY bit of hardware, software and documentation, no matter how
> obscure, how uninspiring, how prevalent, how inspiring, etc.
> The fact is, some of us are providing a very imporant service to future
> historians. Some of us are having fun with a hobby. Some of us are doing
> both. There are no requirements.
> Sam Alternate e-mail:

Right On !!!

ciao larry
Received on Sun Nov 09 1997 - 04:26:08 GMT

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