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Does anyone else find this disturbing?

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Agent Orange

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I never did this with my parents car. But when I would stay over my buddies house we would do it with his parents car when we were 14 and 15,,, Man what a rush.
First time I did it my parents were out with another couple. Myself and a friend waited until the street lights came on and then took it around the block. Every time a car would come toward us, we'd pull over to the curb, turn the headlights out and duck down low. You're right about the rush. BTW it was '53 Plymouth Cambridge with a stick shift.
 

tradde

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Give me WinWord 2 back !

When I started Uni (late as I went to work first) we were originally not allowed to submit printed Lab work and reports and had to write everything out by hand, but in year two they finally relented. Started on WordPerfect 5.1 but the equation editor was blown away by WinWord 2. Suddenly everything was so easy :)

Makes me think, I'm getting old.

When I started work, I had to clock in and out on a proper punch card clock (millennials would probably faint at the injustice), there were no PC's on everyone's desk and led's were fancy 'new technology stuff'

I know to some on here, computers probably only just existed when they started, but I think back to working on thermionic valves, pneumatic control systems, clockwork boiler controls and all sorts of mechanical methods of measuring pressure, flow and level I can't believe how much the digital revolution has taken over.

But, I'm so grateful to have been a kid in the early 70's. We could do anything we wanted, go anywhere we wanted, climb anything we wanted, burn and blow up (almost) anything we wanted. It was a charmed time for those of us who survived relatively unharmed.
My parents often likely didn't even know where we were or doing what. Did they worry? Probably not as things were different back then. Did we do stupid things? Sure, but most kids do. That's how you learn. Do you do really dangerous things? Some might. I think most knew the difference. It was a good time to be a kid and grow up then.
 

tradde

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To this day I still sorely miss WordPerfect's Reveal Code function; to this day you can still run into stupid situations where some formatting "thing" gets submerged in a document and it turns into a circus trying to root it out. I was a pretty rabid WP 5.1 hacker back in the day; did actual "desktop publishing" with it, wrote stationary and label generation macros, mail merges... it's kind of depressing, actually, because I inevitably end up feeling kind of stupid and lost every time I sit down in front of Microsoft Word and need to do something even remotely advanced with it.
That was such a useful feature. I too have gotten caught by some "formatting" issue and spend hours trying to fix it.
 

vwestlife

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IBM Symphony = Lotus Symphony after IBM gobbled up Lotus Development.
It has nothing to do with the DOS application suite other than the name. Basically it was created because IBM thought it would be cheaper for them to create their own application suite for their workforce rather than paying Microsoft to license 400,000 copies of Office.

 

Chuck(G)

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It has nothing to do with the DOS application suite other than the name. Basically it was created because IBM thought it would be cheaper for them to create their own application suite for their workforce rather than paying Microsoft to license 400,000 copies of Office.


Ah, so Lotus Symphony != IBM Lotus Symphony. Ooookay. Sort of like "our Cole Porter", huh? :) (Doesn't everything eventually deteriorate to a Monty Python reference?)
 

kerr

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“The children now love luxury; they have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise. Children are now tyrants, not the servants of their households. They no longer rise when elders enter the room. They contradict their parents, chatter before company, gobble up dainties at the table, cross their legs, and tyrannize their teachers.” - Socrates (Ancient Greek Philosopher, 470 BC-399 BC)
But going back to the article:
  • Heaps of schools use chromebooks now, with cloud integration (aka not real PCs, not many folders/files concepts)
  • Many of us grew up with PCs and learned to use them out of necessity, so we could chat/email/webcam/music/movies (I know plenty of people became experts at torrenting once they heard about all the stuff that could be downloaded!)
  • These days, you don't need a computer for many things - especially "consumption" of media. Dumb tablets and phones can do "enough". PCs are only needed if you want to do serious/business work
  • I remember MS was gonna make folders less-important and instead emphasize metadata. Still hasn't taken off that well but for photography at least, heirachy, folders and filenames are usually meaningless (unless you have a system and stick with it)
  • "fixing" or upgrading tech used to be a big deal, people like us learned to do it ourselves for free. Most tech nowadays is throwaway
Many people I know don't even have a computer any more, they just use tablets and phones. So the article does not really surprise me to be honest.
 

whartung

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you say that with pride kerr..
Computers are awful for human beings. They've always been awful. 50 years in to this, and they're still awful.

At least we have a small subset of their capability in the hands of the masses who have to fumble through crummy software and experiences just to achieve mundane things.

There's a select few of us that actual grok computers, and, perhaps, even enjoy working with them. But we are the few.

Wife having to fly back east, but the flight is "touchless" and you have to register a credit card with them or you can't use any of the in flight services.

After it refused the 3rd Credit Card we tried, we gave up. The lady at the counter couldn't help us either when we checked in. "Download the app!" The app is 500MB(!!!). For an 8G phone? Is that the computers fault? No, it's the systems fault, and the system is made up of the entirety of the people, processes, policies and software. But you know what? It sure looks like the computers fault. Obviously the folks making the system missed some edge case that rose up and conspired against us.

And THAT is "computings" fault.

Because computers are, still, demonstrably, very, very difficult. "Couple NAND gates, what can go wrong?"

It's a good thing that folks can do more with "simpler" (to them) systems. It's not "wrong" for them to not know about CPUs, caches, memory, storage, clocks, I/O, any of it. It's not wrong for them to not know how a diesel motor works when they take a bus. How a kernel of corn is plucked from a field and taken through who knows what process become corn oil, or a corn flake, or a corn muffin, or a taco. It's enough that they can go get the taco, learn the like tacos, created a demand for tacos, and facilitate the long chain it takes to go from kernel to taco for those folks that indeed enjoy any of the steps involved in turning a corn in to a taco.

Let the taco eaters focus on what they enjoy doing and to help move the world along the best way they can without learning meaningless trivia and arcana about the systems they use. Everyone's little world is complicated enough.
 

Agent Orange

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One thing in the computer's favor, is that I can look something up in seconds, whereas when I was a kid in school, it meant a trip to the library or over to one of my friend's house whose family had an encyclopedia. I have to give a thumbs up to computers. (y)
 

Gary C

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One things for sure, I couldn't do as much as I do with vintage computers without the modern internet.

That reminds me, does anyone have a circuit diagram for a IBM PS/1 model 2121 monitor ?
 

Chuck(G)

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Goes back to "thinking like an engineer". For those not similarly inclined, that mindset can be quite a jolt. The issue is that for the pre-internet days, the TLAE crowd made up much of the user community. Now, not even IT people seem to be of that mindset.

In the meantime, keep off my lawn! :)
 

Chuck(G)

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TLAE can be a curse, for certain; when coupled with other similar mindsets it can be really upsetting. I thank my lovely wife for enduring me for all these years.
Example of crossed-minsets: I'm lying under the business end of an IMRT machine. The beam goes on and I hear a whine. I think: "That's a 360 Hz tone because this thing is supplied with 3-phase 60 Hz current and uses a full-wave rectifier. And, that's an annoyingly flat F-sharp, there..."
 

Slob

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I tried to help a friend whose laptop is running Windows 10 and I could not figure out how to do even the most menial task.

Joe
Windows 10 is just awful. The enormous flaw in it is tthat they tried to make it usable on a tablet AND on a laptop, and they failed miserably at both.

On top of that, the designers of it and all of the other Microsoft components obviously fell to the "leave your mark on the fire hydrant" phenomenon; changes were made to the UI for no good reason other than it put a feather in their caps and they were getting paid for it. They should have fired all of the UI developers after about Office 2003. There's a good reason that most Linux UI's feel a lot like Windows 7. It was pretty good. Why change it?
 

VERAULT

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TLAE can be a curse, for certain; when coupled with other similar mindsets it can be really upsetting. I thank my lovely wife for enduring me for all these years.
Example of crossed-minsets: I'm lying under the business end of an IMRT machine. The beam goes on and I hear a whine. I think: "That's a 360 Hz tone because this thing is supplied with 3-phase 60 Hz current and uses a full-wave rectifier. And, that's an annoyingly flat F-sharp, there..."
what linear accelerator are you getting treatmwnt from? Varian or Elekta? (Siemens seems really unlikely) .. is it a truebeam?
 

Grandcheapskate

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When I worked in the IBM mainframe field, there was one thing I always felt was true...whatever program worked on day 1 continued to work through all the upgrades to the hardware and software for the 20+ years I spent in the field. Granted it couldn't take advantage of any more powerful features but that wasn't the point...the point was it still worked and did the job it was designed to do.

I have a lot of older computers starting from the 386 on up. The only reason I ever need a "modern" machine is to access the internet, and I only use one machine for that purpose.

Now that I have the house all to myself, I took one bedroom to use as an office/computer room. There are a number of machines in the room but I use switch boxes so there are only four work stations (three on one desk) and two desks. All are either 386, 486 or Pentium with one "newer" machine running XP.

My sister is constantly on my case about why I keep these older machines. She is constantly asking "What do you do with these machines?", "What good is this old software?", "Get one new machine and you can get rid of all these old machines", "No one uses or would want this stuff", and the one which I am sure is everyone's favorite..."The new programs are easier to use and can do so much more".

I can not tell you how sick I am of people who do not understand why we keep the old stuff. Just leave us alone and don't come to me when the new technology pisses you off. I don't want to hear it.

Joe
 

Chuck(G)

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what linear accelerator are you getting treatmwnt from? Varian or Elekta? (Siemens seems really unlikely) .. is it a truebeam?
It appears to be a Varian Trilogy IGRT, definitely not TrueBeam. Kind of fascinating to observe from the inside. Just finished week 7, with 2 to go. Kind of rough with ADT, but I'm holding up. Guy who runs the place is anti-hypofractionation and gets a little upset when asked about it.
 
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VERAULT

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ok. i worked jn a clinic witha trilogy system but didnt have too much access with it. i knew it was a solid platform. on all the linacs the most common failure point was the mlc motor. these are the small steppet motors which extwnd the tungsten plates which altogether form the shape of the tumor so the irradiatin kills less healthy cells. the bombardment inevitably cooks the mlc motors frequently so the biomed engineers replace them frequently. i suplose you can think of the mlc as a much morw.advanced camera aperature. and from what i remember the trilogy system maps the tumor in 3d more than any systsm before it.

these linacs are a nerds science fair wet dream.

My avatar is what is created if you disable the lockouts on a Linac and bombard plexar with enough electeon radiation and then ground the panel causing an " electron tree"

Chuck i wish you a a healthy recovery but assume the engineer in you is still impressed with the tech. i know i am.
 

Chuck(G)

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Yeah, I find the technology fascinating--and in flux. Now the big thing is aggressive SBRT - 5 treatments over 10 days and you're done, although prep is a little more involved. I looked into it (it's available in the area) but it's new enough that I thought I'd rather be cautious than impatient. Then there are the proton accelerators... Things have come a long way from 20 years ago when the standard treatment was the knife.

On topic, where would all this stuff be without computers?

About 40 years ago, I briefly participated in an MRI startup--the idea was a small MRI system suitable for cardiac use. I recall when we finally tested things out (used a Moto 68K system) and got an image of a probe stuck in an orange. Didn't fly though--investors thought there wasn't a price-perfomance advantage over standard MRI stuff. I think they had a point.
 
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