Many things

From: Tony Duell <>
Date: Fri Jan 28 18:49:15 2005

> >>>> who actually _USE_ our classic computers for our day-to-day work
> Do you mean you use a classic computer as your ** primary ** machine, or just
> that you happen to use it ** once in a while ** for your current work?

The former. The only non-classic computing device that I own is an HP49G
calculator (over 4 years old now). And before you tell me to get an HP41
or somethimg, I'll jsut say that i have a dozen of those, a good few 71s,
4 HP67s, 2 HP97s, and some even older calculators, all of which get used...

> RE: people who use classic computers as their primary machine, not including
> those of you on the list who work for computer museums -- I'm very curious how
> many of you exist. And, do you use classic computers by 1.) choice, 2.) lack
> of budget, or 3.) technological need (that is, legacy connectivity)...?

Partly (1), Partly (2), and mainly because I am not clever enough to repair
a modern computer, I don't have a good enough logic analyser to diagnose
fualts in a modern computer (which comes back to (2) I guess), I don't
have a BGA rework station at home (yet! (2) again), and anyway spares are
hell to obtain anyway. But for my 20-odd-year-old PC/AT, much hacked, but
wtill with the original motherboard with extra chips and kludgewires
soldered to it, I have the schematics, the chips are ones I can
understand (and are pin-through-hole, so they're easy to replace), my
classic Gould logic analyser is easily enough to sort it out, and so on.

And classic computers seem to be so much better built and more reliable
than modern ones. I cringe when I get an ATX PSU in for repair -- cheap
SRBP circuit boards, marginally rated components, and so on. Comparing
that to the PSUs in my PERQs, PDPs, etc, well, there is no comparison.

> I love my vintage computer collection as much as anyone, or else I wouldn't be
> on this list and producing my newsletter, and once in a while it is fun to
> actually use them for modern purposes. Just ask the guy who was startled last
> week when I started taking meeting notes an Apple Newton. But in day-to-day

That's modern! I take notes on a TRS-80 Model 100 or an HP110....

> 'real life', I can't fathom using anything other than a modern system running
> some equally modern version of Unix or Windows. (It's one thing to request the
> PostScript file here in the classiccmp list, but how do you handle it in the
> real world, where people may tell you "Sorry, our company only does business in
> Microsoft"...?

Say 'Sorry, I'll find somebody who actually has a clue, you've lost my
business'. Anyway, I have little desire to be part of the 'real world'.

Received on Fri Jan 28 2005 - 18:49:15 GMT

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