hard-sector 5 1/4 disk

From: Richard Erlacher <edick_at_idcomm.com>
Date: Wed Oct 31 16:29:50 2001

The way I seem to remember it is that, back then, we were amazed when things
worked, rather than being irked when they didn't. Apple's attitude was clearl,
though, and that was that if your data really mattered, you'd certainly use a
computer and not an Apple. The Apple wasn't designed from the ground up as a
computing machine, but rather as a video toy (not in the disparaging sense) on
the order of the several other video games of the time, which, coincidentally
could also do some computing. Apple's approach was that if people were willing
to buy an Apple and then use it for useful work, they'd try to charge as much as
they possibly could, since the overall cost ostensibly would be low initially,
and then they'd make their money on the disk drives, (where they had some real
margin) and other add-ons that it took to convert the Apple into a computer
capable of doing useful work.

What makes all this crystal clear is that if I fire up an Apple today, it still
does all the stupid disk-subsystem-related crap it did back then, only, by now,
nobody would even think of putting up with that. Back then, it was about par
for the course, but it wouldn't last a week in today's environment.

----- Original Message -----
From: "Sellam Ismail" <foo_at_siconic.com>
To: <classiccmp_at_classiccmp.org>
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2001 9:34 AM
Subject: Re: hard-sector 5 1/4 disk

> On Wed, 31 Oct 2001, Richard Erlacher wrote:
> > It's not pilot error that causes the Apple disk subsystem to fall
> > apart whenever there's the slightest error, it's the "we've got your
> > money now, so we've got you by the short and curly" attitude that
> > Apple has always had with respet to their customers' data. That
> > design of WOZ's was clever and cheap, ... REALLY cheap ... , but not
> > terribly reliable. Back in the early '80's I didn't know a single
> > user of the genuine Apple disk subsystem that didn't have a data loss
> > per hour in steady use. The guy I mentioned initially had phone-order
> You must have had some very unlucky friends. If everyone had this same
> experience then there probably would not have been millions of Apple disk
> systems sold.
> > business, and, because his environment was not perfectly clean, he was
> > constantly having to reboot his Apple, since it couldn't recover from
> > a disk read error, and this was before he had a toll-free number.
> Sounds like shitty software to me.
> > I remember how people whined about the PC's <abort, retry, fail> error
> > message for disk errors, yet Apple didn't even have one. It just went
> > TILT.
> No it didn't.
> > Even back in those days we'd all come to expect better than that, and,
> > by the way, the whole problem was exxentially gone if one used 8"
> > FDD's with the SVA controller.
> How did that fix bad software with poorly designed error recovery?
> Sellam Ismail Vintage Computer Festival
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> International Man of Intrigue and Danger http://www.vintage.org
Received on Wed Oct 31 2001 - 16:29:50 GMT

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