The PC's Soviet?

From: Aaron Christopher Finney <>
Date: Thu Apr 16 14:10:54 1998

My step-father is a Hungarian who left in 1956 to get away from the
Russians. Before that, though, he attended a Russian technical school for
engineering and has some amazing stories about it. They were sent to
the school because of high scores in math and science. When told they
were being sent to the "special" school, they were lined up and were
picked randomly for occupations like "duck-duck-goose" for engineering
fields. My step father was chosen for mechanical engineering. The first
day of school, everyone was issued one pencil and told that they were
going to have to accomplish with that one pencil what their contemporaries
in the west were accomplishing with sophisticated, modern engineering
equipment. The funny thing is that we would probably tend to think of
them as being inferior for that, and way behind. However, when he came
here in 1956 and learned some English, he was able to write his own ticket
as an engineer because he knew so much about mechanics at the most basic
levels. Learning how to use the modern tools was a snap.

I think as computer collectors, we have a little better understanding of
how much money was pumped into computer technology in the west, at a time
when people in the east were waiting in line for bread. The techno-history
of the Soviets isn't just interesting, it's astounding.

Does anyone on the list have any Soviet-manufactured systems? This might
be a good thing to look for when (whoever it was that wrote the list that
he was going to Hungary soon) goes over there.


> All right, I have taken this for a while, but no more. This ignorance
> about Soviet technology and abilities is ridiculous. I think you
> people have kept your anti-communist opinions along with you IBM
> 704s.
> Although the USSR certainly had ridiculous administration, and its
> technology was not very modern, there were many advances by the
> soviet union, and it now has just as much technology as the US.
Received on Thu Apr 16 1998 - 14:10:54 BST

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