Programming nostalgia

The war between wetware and hardware.
User avatar
Witness
Posts: 17183
Joined: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:50 pm
Has thanked: 2115 times
Been thanked: 2883 times

Programming nostalgia

Post by Witness » Tue Oct 09, 2018 11:59 pm

Usborne books out of the 80ies:

Image

Perhaps somebody will shed a tear and download: https://usborne.com/browse-books/featur ... ing-books/

:P

User avatar
Abdul Alhazred
Posts: 71731
Joined: Mon Jun 07, 2004 1:33 pm
Title: Yes, that one.
Location: Chicago
Has thanked: 3411 times
Been thanked: 1257 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by Abdul Alhazred » Wed Oct 10, 2018 12:06 am

FORTRAN in technical school. No nostalgia there for me.

A bit of self taught BASIC. Fun at the time but now meh.

But when I finally went to a real college ... Pascal :coolspecs:
Image "If I turn in a sicko, will I get a reward?"

"Yes! A BIG REWARD!" ====> Click here to turn in a sicko
Any man writes a mission statement spends a night in the box.
-- our mission statement plappendale

User avatar
ceptimus
Posts: 1080
Joined: Wed Jun 02, 2004 11:04 pm
Location: UK
Has thanked: 55 times
Been thanked: 37 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by ceptimus » Wed Oct 10, 2018 4:26 pm

I got an old PC down from the loft yesterday and powered it up. CMOS/clock battery dead, of course so it booted into the BIOS, It had the number of cylinders/sectors etc. for each of the two hard drives written inside the case so I was able to configure those in the BIOS (remember when we had to do that?) and default everything else. One of the hard drives was not spinning up, but a bit of shaking/twisting freed it up and then the PC booted into Windows 95. It's a 486DX with a whopping 8MB of RAM plus a 2MB graphics card. The two hard disks are 244 MB and 540 MB, and that's actually plenty of room with lots of free space - even though nowadays a Raspberry Pi has more RAM, than the total storage fitted in this PC! I think the processor is running at 66MHz, but I've forgotten how you check the processor speed on Windows 95 - maybe it's only a 33MHz chip.

So I checked the CMOS battery and, as expected, it was leaking and eating away the PCB - but not too bad. I stripped the thing down, removed the battery and cleaned up the PCB, then fitted an external battery (right now it has a 2200 mAh single LiPo cell, though I'll fit something more appropriate eventually).

It boots up surprisingly quickly and doesn't seem slow at all. It beat me handily at a couple of games of Scrabble, and I also played Doom 2 - both games were installed on one of the HDs. Then I found it has Borland Turbo C++ installed and spent a happy couple of hours writing some simple programs. Compile and link time is plenty fast - it makes you wonder how much we've really gained from multiple gigabytes of RAM, multi-core processors, solid state disk drives and such: modern PCs have hundreds of times the computing power and thousands of times the storage - but you wouldn't think that based on a simple comparison of what they can do compared to this 25+ year old tech.

It also has some Forth language thing installed - but I never got on all that well with Forth so I'm not going to look at that.

It doesn't have a network card, but I have a few of those somewhere. Problem with getting it on the internet would be finding a browser that can run under Windows 95 but still access modern web pages that will work with so little RAM. Maybe some tiny Linux distro would work okay, but I don't really want to sink much more time into it.

User avatar
Doctor X
Posts: 67853
Joined: Fri Jun 04, 2004 8:09 pm
Title: Collective Messiah
Location: Your Mom
Has thanked: 3469 times
Been thanked: 2195 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by Doctor X » Wed Oct 10, 2018 6:49 pm

I have this Timex Sinclair but I cannot find my cassette deck.

What I get for upgrading my stereo.

--J.D.
Mob of the Mean: Free beanie, cattle-prod and Charley Fan Club!
"Doctor X is just treating you the way he treats everyone--as subhuman crap too dumb to breathe in after you breathe out."--Don
DocX: FTW.--sparks
"Doctor X wins again."--Pyrrho
"Never sorry to make a racist Fucktard cry."--His Humble MagNIfIcence
"It was the criticisms of Doc X, actually, that let me see more clearly how far the hypocrisy had gone."--clarsct
"I'd leave it up to Doctor X who has been a benevolent tyrant so far."--Grammatron
"Indeed you are a river to your people.
Shit. That's going to end up in your sig."--Pyrrho
"Try a twelve step program and accept Doctor X as your High Power."--asthmatic camel
"just like Doc X said." --gnome

WS CHAMPIONS X4!!!! NBA CHAMPIONS!! Stanley Cup! SB CHAMPIONS X5!!!!!

User avatar
Witness
Posts: 17183
Joined: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:50 pm
Has thanked: 2115 times
Been thanked: 2883 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by Witness » Thu Oct 11, 2018 1:39 am

Abdul Alhazred wrote:
Wed Oct 10, 2018 12:06 am
FORTRAN in technical school. No nostalgia there for me.

A bit of self taught BASIC. Fun at the time but now meh.

But when I finally went to a real college ... Pascal :coolspecs:
All these languages have now largely converged, apart from idiosyncrasies. Even Fortran (or, as you write to prove you're an old hand: FORTRAN) is now quite slick.

User avatar
Rob Lister
Posts: 20014
Joined: Sun Jul 18, 2004 7:15 pm
Title: Incipient toppler
Location: Swimming in Lake Ed
Has thanked: 607 times
Been thanked: 604 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by Rob Lister » Thu Oct 11, 2018 9:32 am

In fortran, god is real unless otherwise declared as integer.

User avatar
Witness
Posts: 17183
Joined: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:50 pm
Has thanked: 2115 times
Been thanked: 2883 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by Witness » Wed Nov 21, 2018 1:32 am

Abdul Alhazred wrote:
Wed Oct 10, 2018 12:06 am
But when I finally went to a real college ... Pascal :coolspecs:
From 2013:
Photoshop 1.0 source code released

The Computer History Museum is offering the source code to the original version of Adobe Photoshop for download

Version 1.0.1 dates from 1990, and is written in a combination of Pascal and 68000 assembler language, the museum said in a blog post. It's identical to what originally went on sale at the time, with the exception of the MacApp applications library, which was licensed from Apple for the retail version.

The ubiquitous image editing software began life as "Display" in 1987. It was the brainchild of University of Michigan grad student Thomas Knoll, whose brother, John, worked at well-known special effects company Industrial Light and Magic. John and Thomas eventually developed "Display" into its eventual commercial "Photoshop" form. Adobe bought a distribution license in April 1989, though the first company to distribute the software was actually Barneyscan, a maker of slide scanners, the museum says.
https://www.digitalartsonline.co.uk/new ... -released/

Image

User avatar
ed
Posts: 33425
Joined: Tue Jun 08, 2004 11:52 pm
Title: Rhino of the Florida swamp
Has thanked: 459 times
Been thanked: 788 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by ed » Wed Nov 21, 2018 2:07 am

God.

Self taught
Basic then Algol then the next basic thing that I used to program the crap in my company.

Many many hours.....
Wenn ich Kultur höre, entsichere ich meinen Browning!

User avatar
xouper
Posts: 8961
Joined: Fri Jun 11, 2004 4:52 am
Location: HockeyTown USA
Has thanked: 235 times
Been thanked: 143 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by xouper » Wed Nov 21, 2018 9:54 pm

Another free kindle book I picked up today, from a reputable publisher:

The Apollo Guidance Computer: Architecture and Operation
https://www.amazon.com/dp/1441908765/

On the publisher's website the pdf is $39.99
https://www.springer.com/us/book/9781441908766

People often ask me, do you plan to read any of those free kindle books? My standard answer has always been, no, I just collect them, similar to how some people collect bottle caps.

But I can't say that anymore, since this is a book I actually want to read.

User avatar
Witness
Posts: 17183
Joined: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:50 pm
Has thanked: 2115 times
Been thanked: 2883 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by Witness » Wed Nov 21, 2018 10:23 pm

xouper wrote:
Wed Nov 21, 2018 9:54 pm
this is a book I actually want to read.
Be careful, that's a slippery slope… :mrgreen:

User avatar
xouper
Posts: 8961
Joined: Fri Jun 11, 2004 4:52 am
Location: HockeyTown USA
Has thanked: 235 times
Been thanked: 143 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by xouper » Thu Nov 22, 2018 12:59 am

Witness wrote:
Wed Nov 21, 2018 10:23 pm
xouper wrote:
Wed Nov 21, 2018 9:54 pm
this is a book I actually want to read.
Be careful, that's a slippery slope… :mrgreen:
Too late, I already have more ebooks that I want to read than I will ever have time for.

User avatar
Witness
Posts: 17183
Joined: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:50 pm
Has thanked: 2115 times
Been thanked: 2883 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by Witness » Fri Nov 23, 2018 12:01 am

ISS astronaut finds NASA floppy disks in space

The International Space Station just celebrated its 20th anniversary, and European Space Agency astronaut and current ISS resident Alexander Gerst discovered one small reminder of that long history: a folder full of old floppy disks.
[…]
Gerst says he found a locker on the ISS that probably hadn't been opened for some time. One of the floppies is labeled as containing Norton Utilities for Windows 95/98. Some have NASA symbols on the labels.

A couple of the disks are titled "Crew Personal Support Data Disk" with the names Shep and Sergei on them. These were likely for NASA astronaut William Shepherd and Russian cosmonaut Sergei Krikalev, who were both part of the Expedition 1 crew in 2000.
https://www.cnet.com/news/iss-astronaut ... -in-space/

Image

User avatar
Abdul Alhazred
Posts: 71731
Joined: Mon Jun 07, 2004 1:33 pm
Title: Yes, that one.
Location: Chicago
Has thanked: 3411 times
Been thanked: 1257 times

Re: Programming nostalgia

Post by Abdul Alhazred » Fri Nov 23, 2018 12:27 am

Archaeology aboard a space station.

Now THAT'S living in the future. :)
Image "If I turn in a sicko, will I get a reward?"

"Yes! A BIG REWARD!" ====> Click here to turn in a sicko
Any man writes a mission statement spends a night in the box.
-- our mission statement plappendale