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Old 07-09-2013, 01:30 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by vmccord View Post
Rotary telephones.
A local antiques shop reconditions them: they still work in Britain. Only £145!
Old 07-09-2013, 01:49 PM   #17
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The sound of a teletype machine.
Old 07-09-2013, 02:29 PM   #18
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old rotary phone
This was 10 years ago
Back in 2003
" The Great North East Blackout" in the USA ( and part of Canada )

an OLD green rotary Phone i had spliced into the line in the laundry room . had a dial tone all the rime during the 3 to 4 days of no power in SE Michigan
Old 07-09-2013, 03:20 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by DavidMcCann View Post
A local antiques shop reconditions them: they still work in Britain. Only £145!
They are not quite that expensive in the US, maybe $100, but we've gone cellular only. No phone service in the house. Although seriously, part of me thinks it would be awesome if people could only reach me if I happened to be home. But the part of me labeled "Mom" would like to implant communication and tracking chips in my kids.
Old 07-10-2013, 10:08 AM   #20
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Member Response


Memories, no way I wish to use a dial-up or any form that reverts to yesteryear.

While the wired phone system is phasing out for optics & wireless;

I still use my DSL but for how long?

Love to get Fiber but who is going to run it out here in the country? Obama said that rural America would be getting access to the Internet. Another failed statement!

Personally, I do not miss the sound of ASR-33 or even punch machines. Too loud and cumbersome! Keying in code by hand was too time consuming on the front panel.

I still have several antique systems, some home-brew: S-100 systems, TRS-80 w/home brew expansion unit and several home-brew single board systems. Multiple home-brew interfaces for various I/O interfaces. I built my first modem from scratch because the cost was to great for such a simple device. Strip readers for tape and several other I/O interfaces. My wife says that I have a museum in the shop storage. I've kept most of the prototypes, some for contract reasons.

Card readers were a pain and to punch was even worse. Every thing was manual and very tedious whenever you had a card error. I do still chart when writing but libs are wider available then in past. I am spoiled with today's technology! Love every minute for ease of use as compared to yesteryear. No way I want to go back!
I will say that era was a true learning and experimenting period building to today's technology.

My toolbox has grown and will be kept close to the chest. My current laptop has more power than I had in my entire laboratory with multitude of systems. Memory's are good to reminiscence but not stepping back.

I just purchased a external USB 3.0 1 TB external drive for <$70.00 USA, my very first hard drive cost me over $1K for 10 MB back in the early 80's. Ground breaking and ever improving.

Talk about Sci-FY coming true.

Last edited by onebuck; 07-10-2013 at 02:16 PM. Reason: typo
Old 07-10-2013, 12:02 PM   #21
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Excellent documentary on how computers and related technologies evolved from the beginning

Computer History Museum Part 1

Computer History Museum Part 2
Computer History Museum Part 3
Computer History Museum Part 4

Last edited by T.Boyle; 07-10-2013 at 12:42 PM.
Old 07-26-2013, 06:15 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by JWJones View Post
Commodore 64/Amiga, BBSes (had a great time on the WELL), and Usenet.
*crosses arms*

You stole all my answers.

We've (along with my brother) really missed our old C64, so we bought a 'new' one last year. The only other two hardware items we've gotten rid off in order to buy something newer were our A500 and a PS1. Everything else we've kept - apart from the older PC motherboards which we also now regret having discarded. We want to get in DOS stuff for the kicks.

Older hardware we've retained: Amiga 1200, 4000, 600, NOS A500, Amiga CD32 (perfect for Agony on a projector), original Xbox. A couple of older x86 motherboards (with RAM and CPU). Also retained a 52k baud modem - we also intensely miss the BBS scene. Only IRC which we got heavily in to was on an Amiga related one for a couple of years. I never got in to the facebook thing (tried it for nearly three months).

We also miss playing on our older cousin's Vectrex. Now that was a great console

We've been heavily enthused by the personal computer retro scene for ages.

However, for over a year now, I've been reading up on a fair bit of computing history and have discovered the Univacs, the IBM 360s, the PDP10s, and I see a few of you have actually used them in the past in a professional setting! Please, I implore those of you who have worked on those systems to write of your experiences using the old machines! What were your frustrations with them? How much harder or easier to administer than today's behemoths? Any further sharing of your experiences with them would be most warmly welcomed!
Old 07-26-2013, 03:49 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by linuxCode View Post

I love technology because things are faster today than yesteryear. The same goes for computers, servers, laptops, tablets, smartphones and the Internet.

But deep down in me I sometimes missed old technologies and how things were done. For example, I missed the sound of a modem connecting to a server or ISP.

Also missed using modem commands like AT and sz and rz to transfer files and telnet to hop from computer to computer.

I also missed bulletin boards and other old school hacks. Do you have any favorite old technologies?
I wish I missed the sound of dial up... but I just can't seem to.
Old 07-26-2013, 04:23 PM   #24
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I was a late-starter, only got interested in computing in 2002. I really regret missing out on all that old-school stuff.
Old 07-26-2013, 05:07 PM   #25
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Do you sometimes miss the old school geek factor?


My first computer was a Timex/Sinclair 1000 w/Z80 CPU and 2K RAM. lol. In '84 I upgraded to the Commodore 64. My first PC was a Tandy 1200 w/DOS 2.11 on floppy; my second was a Commodore Colt w/DOS 3.25 on a SeaGate 20 HDD; my third was a MicroSys 286 w/DOS 5.0, and my fourth was an Acer 386 w/DOS6.0. It was with the 386 that I got my first look at Windows. It was v3.1... I wasn't impressed. It had far fewer capabilities than GEOS for the C64. lol

What I miss the most is that you could edit startup files (which was faster and easier than running "Wizards" when adding or changing hardware), and what one could do with so few resources.

What I regret the most is not getting into Unix or Linux until after I became spoiled by Windows (my first was Ubuntu 6.06 as a dual boot with WinXP).

Last edited by Mr. Bill; 07-26-2013 at 05:15 PM.
Old 07-26-2013, 07:54 PM   #26
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I don't miss the old technologies. I need speed. I need to get things done fast. I want to have the fastest internet connections and I want the fastest most powerful computer I could afford.
Old 07-27-2013, 07:20 AM   #27
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I miss offline-readers. Although online forums are more immediate, the offline-readers you used to get with conferencing systems like CIX or BBSes were much nicer than working in a browser window, and the workflow suited me better.
Old 07-27-2013, 11:55 AM   #28
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Smile Yeah...

Originally Posted by frankbell View Post
Ah, the old days, when persons who used computers had to know what they were doing . . . .
...and you could actually talk to other users about interesting sophisticated IT stuff. Unlike today, when it feels like 50% of questions computer owners ask are those related to facebook and instagram.

I miss 90s, with DOS, Motif and OS/2, with lots of CLI, with heavy, high quality hardware and complicated brain-charged software, with computer magazines that provided us with lots of information, compiled programming languages being popular and in use, multimedia being used off of local drives and not from Web, Websites being hand-written in HTML3, sound of 6 GB HDD loading and high quality optical drives, with fellows running around with floppy drives and CDs... Ahhhhhh... Miss that so much.
Old 07-27-2013, 11:55 AM   #29
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I think that those of us who were into computers in the 70's and 80's had the very special and unique experience of watching a technology grow (unexpectedly quickly ...) from its nascent beginnings. I do not, per se, "miss" the computers that were "the amazingly fast devices" of those days, but I certainly count myself fortunate for having been there. And I also count myself fortunate that I still find the machines as amazing and engaging, today, as I did then. It's a great thing to be making a (good!) living at what is (still ...) your hobby.


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