"Toy" computers (was Re: Micro$oft Biz'droid Lusers)

From: Christopher Smith <csmith_at_amdocs.com>
Date: Thu Apr 25 16:41:41 2002

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Richard Erlacher [mailto:edick_at_idcomm.com]

> They are toys, since they didn't have a disk interface in
> them. They, in
> fact, if your description is correct, needed a toy interface
> to talk to
> another toy interface that talked to what was probably a
> smarter computer that
> had a disk interface in it.

That pretty much describes commodore disk drives, yep. The
point, though, is that they plug directly into an interface
that's already on the machine, so we would get into the sticky
discussion of how "directly" a drive must be handled. Require
too much of the logic to be in the computer, and suddenly an
external IDE disk wouldn't count.

As an aside, I've heard of interesting things being done with
the disk drive "computers," though I can't think of any off hand.

They spoke a pretty simple serial protocol, too, such that you
can basically plug them into other systems (Intel Linux machines,
at least) and build simple applications to talk to them, and they
handled all of the complexities of disk I/O, so that the CPU didn't
need to -- so there are good points to them.

That being said, if I understand your other post properly, once
the drive is there, you would possibly not consider it a toy
any more, whether the drive is external or not, and regardless
of how it's driven. Or am I way off?

Would you also have considered 9-track tape "mass storage" for the


Christopher Smith, Perl Developer
Amdocs - Champaign, IL

/usr/bin/perl -e '
print((~"\x95\xc4\xe3"^"Just Another Perl Hacker.")."\x08!\n");
Received on Thu Apr 25 2002 - 16:41:41 BST

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