Register a SA Forums Account here!
JOINING THE SA FORUMS WILL REMOVE THIS BIG AD, THE ANNOYING UNDERLINED ADS, AND STUPID INTERSTITIAL ADS!!!

You can: log in, read the tech support FAQ, or request your lost password. This dumb message (and those ads) will appear on every screen until you register! Get rid of this crap by registering your own SA Forums Account and joining roughly 150,000 Goons, for the one-time price of $9.95! We charge money because it costs us money per month for bills, and since we don't believe in showing ads to our users, we try to make the money back through forum registrations.
 
  • Post
  • Reply
Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Ladies and goons, the Alphasmart.
A tough little device that solves one problem: word-processing on the go. It boots up instantaneously, runs for days on 2 (later 3) AA batteries, and you have 4 lines to type in. You can't get to the Internet. You can't play Minecraft. You can't even obsess about that paragraph you wrote 10 lines ago. All you can do is move forward. I used mine on the train for years before I got my first netbook.

You could have precisely 8 files on an Alphasmart, each of which had 12.5 pages. Then you synced them, deleted them, and moved on. I had the bright and shiny Alphasmart Dana, which ran PalmOS . (note Palm stylus)


They're still sold (although I suspect not very often) to schools. I couldn't bear to throw mine away; it's still in my Graveyard of Computing. Just thinking about it gives me a rush of affection. I should find it and give it a spin. In fact, if I ever commute by mass transit again, I may rely on it again: it doesn't let you do anything but write, and that's a good thing. $30 on Ebay.

e:okay, okay, fix the blinkenlights

Arsenic Lupin has a new favorite as of 19:14 on May 8, 2013

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





yaoi prophet posted:

I remember having one of those! IIRC you sent files to your computer by plugging it in and hitting a 'send' button, and it would then essentially act as a keyboard 'typing' out the document very quickly.

I'd completely forgotten that! I think I actually opened a Notepad window before hitting send -- I don't remember an accompanying PC/Mac app that listened.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





The Alphasmart 3K (in sizzling Bondi blue) had a mighty 200K. The Dana had 16M.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Split-flap displays. Did you ever watch Groundhog Day and wonder what was with that weird clock? Well, before LEDs came down in price, digital clocks rotated cards against a ratchet: each time a minute passed, the card slipped in front of the ratchet and a new card was displayed. Since minutes move in an ascending sequence, this worked just fine.

However, sometimes you need a bigass display that's alphabetic -- say, for instance, you're a train station and you need to show the next ten trains leaving and where they're leaving for.


Every single letter there is one flap on a 26-flap wheel. (Note that there are also specialized flaps for things like train lines.) Now imagine that the train at the top of the list departs. That means that the list needs to move up and a new train has to be displayed at the bottom. That, in turn, means that every single one of those wheels has to rotate from its current position to the new letter. When you're sitting next to one of these boards, it sounds like a thousand pigeons took off next to a chain-link fence with playing cards clipped to their wings.

Mechanical stuff is awesome.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





There was a time when all the indexing and filing done in libraries was manual. Actual people needed to keep track of where a book was, what it was about, who had checked it out, and when it was due. This took a lot of intellectual and manual work. Originally books' metainformation was tracked in handwriting in books, later by typing on cards.

The game-changing mechanical device was the Gaylord Model C Book Charger, introduced in 1930. This device made a mighty ker-chunk that anybody who used it has never forgotten.


In the Gaylord Model C system, every book had a charge card in an attached pocket. The charge card had the book's author, title, and call number. Every patron had a library card that had a metal (later plastic) charge plate. The charge plate usually had a number; somewhere else in the library's filing system was a list of numbers and the corresponding patron name/address.

To check out a book, you put the patron's library card in the front slot of the charger. Then you pushed the charge card down into the back slot. There was a ker-chunk (this was the important part) while the machine simultaneously bit a chunk out of the edge of the card and impressed the current date and the library card on the charge card in purple ink. The librarian then stamped the date the book was due on the date itself and filed the stamped charge card under the due date.

Working librarians breathed a sigh of relief when this process was automated. To keep it running required a lot of hand-filing and hand-searching, not to mention typing replacement cards, repairing cards and pockets, and replacing the ribbon in the charge machine. I miss the whole system, although I don't miss the work it took to keep it running.


.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





bunnielab posted:

I mean, I am a traditionalist so the only drugs I take are aspirin, tums, Benadryl, and opium derivatives. Usually with red wine and a nice jazz album.

Where do you stand on strychnine-based tonics, found in the U.S.pharmacopeia as late as 1925? See also the many exciting uses, both internal and external, for "Oleum Terebinthinae (Ol. Tereb.), Oil of Turpentine".

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





I wonder what happens when those hot-water-meltable plates resolidify in the drains?

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.






Known, for obvious reasons, as "the million-dollar loveseat".

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Pham Nuwen posted:



Holy poo poo I just opened the lid on this washing machine-looking bastard! Check out the disk platters in there. Those are entirely replaceable.
That form factor of disk drive had more than you'd think in common with a washing machine. If the disks became unbalanced -- as, for instance, when part of the disk broke off -- the drives would walk across the room, very noisily indeed, until they came to the length of their cables. Merriment, by which I mean cursing, ensued. Head crashes were also quite audible.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Delivery McGee posted:

Yeah, like the Cray-1, it was cutting-edge real life tech that was glorified in the book. Crichton would cry if he could read this thread. He always picked the awesome tech that eventually lost.
It's the computer industry. Every technology loses sooner or later.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Germstore posted:

Having a desktop doesn't mean you won't have a laptop, and having a laptop doesn't mean you won't have a tablet.

This. Our four-person household has four smartphones, 3 tablets, 4 laptops, and 2 desktops. Each serves a different purpose. That said, the adults share one desktop and use the laptops as primary computers.

I think the desktop will continue to survive as long as wired is appreciably faster than wireless and as long as big monitors are a thing.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





All of this comes from the site http://www.sewalot.com, which I heartily recommend.

In the 1800s there was insanely fierce competition among sewing machine inventors, known as (no lie) the Sewing Machine War. People remember Elias Howe and Isaac Singer, but the truth is that those two men won the patent wars (check out the legal term patent thicket) and the legal battles, but were not the first to demonstrate machines. There were functional sewing machines before either man sat down at a workbench. In particular, an Englishman named John Fisher demonstrated the first "modern" sewing machine in 1844... but unfortunately his patent filing was screwed up. As a result, Howe's and Singer's machines got the first patents; Fisher died broke. Eventually, the "Sewing Machine Combination" was formed; this was a patent pool between the major players, so that the best features of each design could be combined -- if you were part of, or paid a royalty to, the cartel.

Modern sewing machines use two threads, one fed up from the bottom from a bobbin, and one thrust down through the fabric by a needle. The two threads wrap around one another, making a seam called a "lockstitch". Wikipedia has a great animated diagram, if you're curious.

But, you say, that's not obsolete! Quite right. But in 1855, a man named James Allen Edward Gibbs saw a single woodcut of a lockstitch sewing machine, then started messing around to see if he could puzzle out the mechanism. His solution, although he didn't realize it at first, was entirely original.

James Gibbs posted:

"I first discovered that the needle was attached to the needle arm, and consequently could not pass entirely through the material, but must retreat through the same hole by which it had entered. From this I saw that it could not make a stitch similar to handwork, but must have some other mode of fastening the underside and, among other possible ideas of doing this, the chain stitch occurred to me."


The nifty thing about the chain stitch is that it uses one thread instead of two; as a result, a chainstitch machine is much simpler mechanically (and also quieter) than a lockstitch machine. The not-so-nifty thing about the chain stitch is that if you pull that one thread, the seam unravels. If you've ever opened a bag of onions or potatoes or rice by pulling a string through a piece of paper, you've encountered a machine chainstitch. Unravelling when you pull the thread is ideal for a potato sack, but somewhat less optimal for a dress, at least if you aren't a stripper. Seamstresses had to tie off the thread by hand as soon as they completed a seam to keep their work intact.

Because of their mechanical simplicity, chainstitch machines could be produced much more cheaply than lockstitch: lockstitch machines sold for about $100, Willcox and Gibbs chainstitch machines sold for $50. As https://www.sewalot.com points out, even $50 in 1857 is approximately $3000 today; any sewing machine was a hefty investment. Long-term, however, chainstitch was at a practical disadvantage. If you need to alter the middle of a lockstitch seam, you can pick out only a few stitches and resew them; the remainder of the seam remains sturdy. If the middle of a chainstitch seam needs repair, without very careful management the whole drat thing will fall apart. Home chainstitch machines continued to be competitive well in the 20th century, but eventually the lockstitch machines took over the ecological niche. Nowadays, chainstitch machines are sold as children's toys and for industrial uses.

Arsenic Lupin has a new favorite as of 22:50 on Sep 15, 2014

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





I really love mechanical stuff. It's magic, man. Moving parts, interlocking, and running for years and years and years if treated right. (glares at laptop)

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Christmas Present posted:

So I get what you're saying and agree for the most part- but I've worked in computer repair, and the most likely components to fail in a laptop are ironically the only mechanical parts, the HDD disk or the optical drive.
True. In fact, when the hard drive crashes or the printer jams, I have been known to mutter "Moving parts, man." I don't actually want to live in Steampunkonia where everything's run by Babbage computers. Because I used to work in the software industry, things having to do with computers aren't magic to me; I know where (some of) the purple smoke comes from. I've never looked into gears and cams and such, so things like mechanical zigzaggers for the Singer Featherweight, a straight-stitch machine, are fascinating.

Spoiler: How the zigzag attachment works. Because Featherweights are designed and machined to drive the needle straight down, you can't move the needle back and forth. Instead, the attachment moves the fabric from side to side.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Exit Strategy posted:

I knew someone who pronounced it as "sexy". We just thought he was weird.
IIRC either the standards committee or Apple, one of the first consumer-facing adopters, wanted it to be pronounced "sexy". Everybody else laughed and went right on saying "scuzzy".

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Pham Nuwen posted:

This, perhaps?


During the Loma Prieta quake (which was posted live on USENET) somebody at DECWRL commented that his entire 10-foot shelf of DEC manuals nearly fell on his head, and he was thinking "God, I'm going to be the first person ever killed by documentation."

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Delivery McGee posted:


With that and a USGS topographic map at one of those scales, I can, for example, call in artillery fire to close enough.

Why, so can I, and so can any man, but will it come when you do call for it?

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





spog posted:

Not nearly old enough, but I did learn to program in FORTRAN where we had columns based on the width of punch cards.

I still try out the "God is real unless declared integer" joke, but nobody laughs any more.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Root Bear posted:

Stumbled across some artifacts while cleaning out an old cabinet at my parent's house:



Oh, God, I remember those manuals. I worked tech support at the MBA school of my university and they had like 20 PCs, each of which came (no option to admit) with the full set of those manuals, and IIRC we wound up having an entire shelf of manuals that nobody looked at even once.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





flosofl posted:

Why was everything brown, orange, golden-rod, or avocado in the 70s? I've never understood even though I spent my childhood in them.

Why was everything teal, mauve, and purple in the 1990s? Color groups go into and out of fashion.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





I highly, HIGHLY (warning, terrible Web 2.0 website) Light Dims. Lets you dim out every single drat LED on your equipment. Now my fricking TV doesn't announce its brand all night, nor do my chargers happily inform me that they are plugged in.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Collateral Damage posted:

$16 for some stickers? I'll just keep using electrical tape.

Also I can't wait for this interior design trend of everything being various shades of bright white to die off. Some color please!

Hmm. They're $8.50 on Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/LightDims-Ori...g/dp/B00CLVEQCO The thing that makes them better than electrical tape is that you can still see the LED. This means that if you really want to, you can check whether the TV/sound system/DVD player actually is on.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





See previous post; I actually don't want to block all the light, but to dim it. Things like power indicators are useful.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





I loved my (HP, I think?) netbook because I could tuck it into my purse and take it with. All I wanted the netbook to do was run a browser, Scrivener, and OpenOffice. It was great for that. It was lightweight, reliable, and fun. Until it broke. And I bought another one. Which broke.

Then I tried a Chromebook and was happy for a bit, but thanks to this year's ballooning Chrome memory leaks, it became next to useless. I was running the task manager and killing processes, but it flat-out would not run acceptably with any ad-blocker installed and yes, I was using uBlock. Great, being captive to a single app that way; I also got heartily sick of not being able to set anything on the system unless Google thought I ought to be able to. (See: telling it never to hibernate so I could run things all night.)

Now I'm on a 13" Macbook Pro, and the freedom to actually *install software* is unbelievable. You don't know what you'll miss until you give it up.

Tablets are a different niche from laptops. I type blindingly fast on a physical keyboard, and painfully slowly on a popup screen keyboard. If you do a lot of writing (or flaming), you want something with a keyboard.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Coffee And Pie posted:

It's more online gambling than anything else. Oh, and it's a place sad people go when they're drunk.
My son, who volunteers in the computer area of the local library, says he spends a lot of time showing people how to fill in web forms, how to print PDFs, and how to format resumes. (And, alas for him, trying to mediate fights between everybody else and one little old lady who thinks she owns the space to the extent of telling other people not to move chairs.)

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





My local library checks out CDs and DVDs for free. It offers a way to check out E-books, both for free and for pay. It also offers, for free, a substantial computer area. Many of my low-income friends depend on libraries for Internet access, because ISP fees are an expense many people can't afford. The library does a boom business in helping people print downloaded IRS forms now that you can't get them on paper. My son volunteers to staff the computer area and (most of) his patrons are really grateful, because they don't have basic computer skills. Nobody cares if the patrons watch porn; jacking off is another issue. Library manners have changed, too. In my local library, there's no "be quiet" rule, and any patron, including homeless and mentally ill people, is welcome until he/she threatens others or makes a scene.

Your mental image of "a library" is different from what they actually do nowadays.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





thespaceinvader posted:

This all over. My local libraries have been using RFID systems to check out books for years, and I'm pretty sure they don't actually HAVE any date stamps any more, but all the new books still get date stamp cards put in them.
Back when I worked in library automation (a loooong time ago) most librarian groups insisted that any computer system they bought deleted checkout records after a book had been returned. They wanted to make sure that nobody could come in and demand to see everybody who'd checked out $suspiciousbook. No idea if this is still true. This is an actual advantage automated circulation systems have over physical cards.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





twistedmentat posted:

Yep. My friend who used to be a Dominatrix has one, and they were really popular with her female clients. Sex toys are nether obsolete nor failed.
Violet Wands didn't start out as sex toys, though. They started out as a quack therapy for things like hair loss. They were rediscovered by the BDSM crowd in the late 20th century, and for awhile you could make good money by rewiring originals. Then they started being remanufactured.

quote:

Is there any tech right now anyone thinks that may be seen and failed/obsolete in the near future? The only thing I can think of is controllerless motion controls. The fact Xbone sales went up when it was sold without Kinect implies that people don't want it. Even controller based ones I feel are going to be relegated to specific types of games, and not being the main way games are controlled in the future.
Dedicated word processors. There's still one brand being sold (the AlphaSmart, for educational use), but it's on its last legs. Along the same lines, dedicated personal medical computation for things like communication for nonverbal people. The newer generation of that sort of stuff is using iPads or the equivalent instead of specialized hardware. In general, single-purpose personal computer-task hardware is going to go the way of the calculator, the nonsmart cellphone, the dedicated recipe computer (somebody, somewhere must have bought those, right?), and so on. I think the Kindle will be an exception for awhile because, like the iPod, it's actually a façade for selling media content.

I'd like to think that smartphones as we know them now are on their last legs, but that's just optimism.

I liked the clit mouse, too, because I couldn't hit it with my wrist the way I do the damned trackpad.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





twistedmentat posted:

No man, you're supposed to hear the cracks and pops and the sound needs to be muffled and wear out after 3 plays. That's how you know the musics real!

BTW, I always see "beta tapes failed because you couldn't put a 2 hour movie on one" all the time, and gently caress that. I grew up with a beta player and i had a huge collection of movies I recorded off TV.

I did, too, but I think you could only get two-hour tapes when they first came out. If you're recording off the TV, you have to be there to stop the VCR every time a commercial comes on, which kind of defeats the point of "set it and forget it" recording.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Horace posted:

Why couldn't they have just shipped CDs in cardboard sleeves like miniature LPs?

Protection against shoplifting. Seriously.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





We used to rent CED players and discs from Blockbuster because they were cheap. The thing about CED is that there's an actual needle in contact with the disk, so they succumb to all the problems that LP records do. Lasers are (duh) much less destructive of the data source. A CED that's been through the rental process is a crapshoot.

e: We're major into ancient (i.e. 1970s) British shows. When you see them on a wide-screen hi-def scene, you see a lot of details that were invisible on the original small-screen format. That means the heavy makeup is way visible, as are the visual shortcuts in costuming and sets. Those tradeoffs were completely appropriate when you were looking at a small TV screen and needed to pick up some details and overlook others. Movies fare a lot better than TV shows because the former were always intended to be seen on a big screen.

Arsenic Lupin has a new favorite as of 20:48 on Feb 9, 2016

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Jedit posted:

If I bought it as a single issue why does it make sense that I should pay for it again?

Take a look at your BluRay (or, if you're older, DVD or CD) collection and answer that question again.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





The TSA-approved locks for your luggage.

quote:

In a spectacular failure of a “back door” designed to give law enforcement exclusive access to private places, hackers have made the “master keys” for Transportation Security Administration-recognized luggage locks available to anyone with a 3D printer.

The TSA-recognized luggage locks were a much-vaunted solution to a post-9/11 conundrum: how to let people lock their luggage, on the one hand, but let the TSA inspect it without resorting to bolt cutters, on the other.

When the locks were first introduced in 2003, TSA official Ken Lauterstein described them as part of the agency’s efforts to develop “practical solutions that contribute toward our goal of providing world-class security and world-class customer service.”

Now that they’ve been hacked, however, TSA says it doesn’t really care one way or another.

“The reported ability to create keys for TSA-approved suitcase locks from a digital image does not create a threat to aviation security,” wrote TSA spokesperson Mike England in an email to The Intercept.

“These consumer products are ‘peace of mind’ devices, not part of TSA’s aviation security regime,” England wrote.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Tunicate posted:

Yeah, 3d printing doesn't change much because the criminals already had the keys.

True, but the TSA's public statement that they don't care at all is new to me. Not that they think it, but that they're dumb enough to say it.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Wanamingo posted:

I still torrent all my shows, is that an obsolete technology yet?
More and more so; one of my favorite membership-only magnet sites is having to cope with not only DDOS attacks but with having to change ISPs because of threats of copyright enforcement. I said for years that when seeing shows legally became easier than torrenting, I'd ante up with joy. For instance, the BBC is moving toward producing a for-pay streaming site that will include much of the programming they never sell abroad; I'm psyched.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





GWBBQ posted:

Major first world problems here, but where Windows 7 would change the color scheme to basic, Windows 8 would disconnect 4 of my 6 monitors without warning. It's even more annoying when one of them is the Cintiq tablet I'm using at the time.

What kind of work do you do? Sounds cool.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Phanatic posted:

Uber to airport:
Nice clean car
Functional air conditioning
Check engine light not illuminated
Free bottle of water
Driver didn't have to ask me for directions
Easy payment
Didn't get raped
$15
The last Uber I took: Got so lost that I spent 15 minutes asking her what landmarks she could see and wound up walking a block down to the closest major street and waving frantically. Started to drive through a red light until I stopped her, and explained that the light at the next block was green. Was about to miss the turnoff to the DMV (which she said she knew how to get to, so no need for Uber map) when I said "Turn here!"

My anecdote does not trump your anecdote, but data trumps both of us.

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Jedit posted:

Look on the bright side - you still didn't get raped.

She probably couldn't have found the vulva anyway

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





Phanatic posted:

In the US, graduating high school used to mean that you were sufficiently competent at written English to communicate with others, good enough at math to pay your bills and balance a checkbook, and could get along well enough with others that you went 12 years without being imprisoned or dropping out. And hence were presumably employable.
In the U.S., kids who were learning-disabled, autistic, behavior problems, or just slow to learn were pushed out of the system as soon as possible, and/or dropped out at sixteen. Minority and poor kids were, just as today, in terrible schools without adequate resources. You can't compare some education golden age today without making sure that the populations are comparable. Those (accurate) stories about the curriculum in 1912 containing much more difficult courses have to be coupled with "but most kids didn't graduate anyway."

Yes, there are behavior problems today, but in the Good Old Days teachers were expected to beat unruly students. Yes, there are indifferent parents and drug abuse today, but there were indifferent parents and drunks then. Yes, there are teen pregnancies, but in the Good Old Days pregnant students weren't allowed even to attend high school. In my high school in 1977, you were expected to drop out once the pregnancy started showing.

We are turning out a lot fewer educated students, but we have a different student base than we did in the past, there are no factory jobs for high-school dropouts, and on and on.

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

Arsenic Lupin
Apr 11, 2012

This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn't generally heard, and if it is, it doesn't matter.





TinTower posted:

1994, actually.

It was seen as such a common domestic skill it took EU legislation to change the British attitude.

IIRC Douglas Adams had a joke about men only being needed to put the plugs on cords. I had to get that one explained to me.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • Post
  • Reply