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Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Sex Hobbit posted:

I'm 26 and I remember when 3.5" floppies were the hot new poo poo. I was probably in second or third grade and the teacher held up a 5.25:

"This one can hold only a few pages on Clarisworks..." then held up the 3.5: "...but this one can hold HUNDREDS!"

I'm 30 and remember being pissed when PC games started coming out on 3.5" disks, because my machine didn't have that type of drive.

e. behind me on a bookshelf I have a sealed box of 5.25" disks I bought at Goodwill a few months ago. Was going to use them in my C64 since I've been learning Commodore Basic, but I dunno, the novelty of owning an unopened box of those is kind of cool [and I already have a zillion already-used-but-reusable 5.25" disks I could use anyway]

Code Jockey has a new favorite as of 07:05 on Oct 12, 2012

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Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

you can call
but I seldom answer after all






Holy poo poo that's cool. Very interesting stuff, thanks for that!

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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0dB posted:



I feel bad for owning an HP classic seeing as I don't know how to use of half of the functions. But I drat well wanted one when I was kid, saw it for about $10 and it's mine. Amazingly, it works.

Once upon a time you knew that an RPN calculator was a REAL calculator, a hand held super computer that was so classy it came in a fur lined leather case.

Now to find a manual.

Hooooooly poo poo my parents used to have a calculator a lot like this! It wasn't RPN but it had that same display system [which I still think looks cool] and same general style. It was just a regular calculator, though.

I'm sure it was a regular old $5 calculator, but I totally forgot about that, until I saw this.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

you can call
but I seldom answer after all





Ron Burgundy posted:

Let me present my hobby that is comprised of 100% obsolete technology.


That is so freaking cool. Awesome post. That FP3 looks like it weighs a ton, as did any big piece of technology of the era.

The modular processor is really cool too, what a good idea.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

you can call
but I seldom answer after all





Coffee And Pie posted:

Well it's not really a problem if it falls off, I guess.

Either that or it becomes The Hulk, in dong form.

Worth the gamble, if you ask me.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

you can call
but I seldom answer after all





Despite my love for it, I would say the Famicom Disk System is rather obsolete.



Basically: it's an add-on disk drive system for the Famicom [the Japanese NES]. Something interesting about the system is how different some games for it are than their NES counterparts; for instance, Metroid for the FDS has savegames thanks to being able to write to the disk [as opposed to using a battery backup solution inside the cart, which I assume hadn't been developed yet when Metroid came out].

And one of the most famous differences, a number of titles had remarkably different music than their NES versions:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=txF7fZeOuyM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxTvoTeoBNc

One advantage that disks had over carts is that disks could be rewritten. Nintendo set up Disk Writer stations around Japan which allowed people to pop a disk in and write a game to it from a big selection of them. Kind of like a proto-Red Box kiosk, if Red Box made you provide your own DVD.

I myself have a Sharp Twin Famicom, which is a kickass little device which has a built in Famicom and FDS all in one package:


[not mine, but I have the same model/color]

Pretty awesome. Plus, it uses actual Nintendo hardware, which comes in handy when the inevitable happens: The disk drive fails.

Y'see, the FDS disk drive is belt driven. The belt is made from a material which is hard to describe; I'm sure at one point, the belt in mine was a solid, durable, flexible-yet-tight piece of rubber. However, when I bought it a year or so ago, the drive didn't work [very very common when buying FDS/Twin Famis], so I popped it open to replace the belt only to find that the belt had turned into some semi-solid semi-fluid horrific mess all over the pulleys it was attached to. Also, it stains the poo poo out of everything and is impossible to get out; I'm glad I plan to replace the carpet in my home office anyway.

I finally replaced the belt today, and come to find out I didn't align something right inside, so it still won't read disks.

So moral of the story: be glad, kids, that the BDROM in your PS3 isn't belt driven!

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

you can call
but I seldom answer after all





Mister Kingdom posted:

That looks like something you would have seen on Star Trek TOS.

Ha! I wouldn't be too surprised.

That reminds me, I've been re-watching Red Dwarf since Season 10 just came out, and early in Season 1 I spotted this:




The Commodore 64: So awesome, it's used to control spacecraft. Obviously the Jupiter Mining Corp doesn't consider it to be obsolete, even if we might.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

you can call
but I seldom answer after all





blugu64 posted:

You can still get them brand new!

http://www.pckeyboard.com/

Or refurbished.

http://www.clickykeyboards.com/

I bought a refurb a couple years ago, and have never looked back. The loudness and annoyance to others is overplayed.

I think I am going to ask MY WIFE for one of those beautiful Unicomps for christmas. I had no idea what I wanted until you just reminded me they exist, so thanks!

Also, some of the keyboards on the clickykeyboards site are so nice looking. Maybe it's just fondness for what I grew up on, but they just have such a nice, professional, clean aesthetic appeal. Way better than the cheapo mass produced Dell pack-in media keyboard I'm typing on now.

I can't wait to get a proper mechanical keyboard. I have long threatened my developers that I'd get one and drive them all nuts [I type fast and I type a lot].

e. I love the gently caress out of the fact that I can order a Unicomp without Windows keys. I hate Windows keys. I am that guy.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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blugu64 posted:



If you order new, make sure you get one with control in the right place too.



Oh whoa, what? Is this how they used to be? Because drat I don't ever remember that, and I've been using PCs since the 8088 era.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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blugu64 posted:

It was always more of a unix thing, I think. Why put a key you rarely use in a easy to hit place on the home row, and a key you use all the time all the way in the corner?

This is true!

Huh, I kind of like that, pretending my keyboard is set up that way. More ergonomic for, like you said, a key that gets used a lot more than caps lock does.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Gregslo posted:


To be fair, Windows 8 has those sweet live tiles while the user interface of these computers looks more like this:



I absolutely love this, and stuff like this is why I wish I'd been born a few decades earlier and could've come up during this period in computer science. I mean yeah, coming up in it during the internet era is incredible, but that just looks awesome. I imagine it'd be far less fascinating if I had, though.

Blows my mind what early CS did with equipment like that. Programmers these days have it way easy. I'm a C# developer, and I never take the advantages of .Net for granted.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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^^ Going to go ahead and guess "scram" means "oh gently caress" mode?

0toShifty posted:

You might be interested in visiting your local nuclear power plant when they open up on their community information night.

That's a neat idea! Unfortunately my closest one is Hanford [I'm in NW Washington], and... they've... had their share of issues, lately. I don't think it's open to the public.

Hmmm. Definitely something to keep in mind, I'd love to tour a nuclear plant. Not something I ever thought about. Thanks!

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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HOLY poo poo THESE BOTTLES! I haven't seen one in ages! I totally remember the thick as hell bottoms on these. Whoa, nostalgia rush.

quote:

And I mourn the obsolete technology of instant-win contests that don't require you to go to the company website and register to enter the number on the cap.

Ugh, this. I miss just... knowing I'd won. Fast food still does these kinds of contests, but yeah, most of the soda/other food item ones are ENTER THIS CODE AT OUR WEBSITE TO SEE IF YOU'VE WON drat it game I just want to know now!

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Smoke posted:

I'm a Super Advantage owner myself:


Same here. Had one as a kid, and bought one a couple of months ago as part of my retro collecting binge. It really is built like a tank, and a great stick, even if fighting game enthusiasts sometimes complain about the L / R button positions [the gray buttons] since the buttons aren't in two rows of three like a normal arcade stick.

Now then, its daddy:



This thing is indestructible. I should know - I had one as a kid, and was prone to gettin' mad at video games. This thing took all the pounding I gave it and kept on truckin'. It's a truly great stick.

Also, I totally love the style of both sticks.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Athenry posted:

I actually cracked the plastic on my NES advantage around the joystick from pushing right too hard. Still works fine.

Are you the Hulk

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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I would be scared to cut my finger on that, or is it not sharp?

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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leidend posted:

But I also liked the original xbox controller and am one of those weirdos who uses both my middle and index fingers on modern controller triggers.

I like you. Let's be friends.

I have giant loving hands, and the original massive xbox controller feels great to me. I have a pile of them, since I use an xbox for an emulation station now. Feels good, man.

I didn't have any fun controllers for my C64 though, just a standard ol' flight stick style joystick. I feel like I was missing out.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Ron Burgundy posted:


Before electronically generated colour patterns like the Philips were invented, cards like the classic BBC Test Card F were produced by literally pointing a camera at a card.

This is how I thought it was done all the time!

Thank you Ron Burgundy, you have expanded my mind. This thread continues to be awesome.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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einTier posted:

Indestructible was this monster.



I had a couple of those and they worked no matter how many times my brother threw them. They were also so stiffly sprung that using them for more than an hour or so left your hands sore.

Got one of these babies in a lot of C64 stuff I bought a few months ago. Definitely a tough little stick!

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Before my oldschool Trackball Explorer died, I LOVED IT for doing stuff with my old laptop. Not gaming, but like taking my laptop around and doing network management with it [it was my only laptop with a serial port, and I didn't have a USB->Serial thingy yet]. Trackballs require only their footprint worth of space, which is nice when space is limited. You can use it against your leg, even! A good device.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Qotile Swirl posted:


Although it's not much wider than 8mm film, the picture area is nearly the same size (and thus potentially the same quality) as 16mm. It manages this by moving the perforations to the center of the film, allowing the picture to stretch all the way from edge to edge, but that wasn't 9.5mm's main claim to fame: In silent films, you have intertitles for dialogue and narration and such. A ten second title might take anywhere from 160 to 200 frames of film (or in other words, 4 to 5 feet for 9.5mm), but those titles add up and film is expensive. To combat this, Pathé introduced the notch system. The projector would have a little arm that would feel along the side of the film. If it found a notch, it would pause on a single frame for around five seconds. That way, a title that before took 200 frames now only needed 2.

Is this the first ever video compression technology?

That's genius.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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BattleMaster posted:

That's when you enter your password. I use the fingerprint scanner on my phone to unlock it but I can also enter a PIN.

Yeah, I have one of those USB fingerprint scanners that works with XP [doesn't work for anything past XP, it seems] and you either use your fingerprint or ctrl-alt-del and enter a password as usual.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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spog posted:

And I guarantee that you can get through it by walking up to it with a handfull of papers just after someone opened it and smiling helplessly.

Yeah, this works a lot. I don't work in an especially high security job, but the upper floor of my building, where most of the corporate offices are - and where I work - is secured by swipe card. I've seen so many people let total strangers in, who I've never seen before, because they simply wait by the door and give a vv kind of look. I don't do it anymore but did a few times. I imagine it's mostly vendors taking tours or maintenance people for our lousy HVAC system, but they need to go through the front desk, drat it!

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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treiz01 posted:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rHlRmKAPFt0
This crazy poo poo. I played one of these for years. It had a plethora of synth crap but I usually left it on plain piano. I bought it from another kid at school for $50 and it came with a Sega Genesis AC adapter! This was the best part of the whole keyboard though, I drove my mother crazy mashing the demo button over and over again.

Ha! I had this exact same keyboard, and yep, drove the parents nuts with it.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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I paid about $2000 for my Pentium 200 upgrade when I did it.

I paid extra so I could get MMX.

Welp.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Nathan Explosion posted:

The best thing for locking your keys in your car is having a friend who is a locksmith. I lost $5 when I bet him he couldn't get into my car in under a minute. He got in. Still couldn't start it though

That said, I wish I had a keypad or a secret button that activates the lock solenoid. Then again the newer cars with the NFC keyfob and button system is pretty bad rear end.

I've got a brand new CX-5, and having an NFC key is really awesome. It's weird, since I'm so used to using a key to start and not a push button, but it's pretty cool.

It still does have a key, which slides out of the NFC fob, so I can give the fob to a valet and keep the key for myself. I believe it opens the hatch and glovebox, that kinda thing.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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minato posted:


See also the speech in C64's Impossible Mission: "Destwoy him, my wobots!"

"AAAAAAAA-AAAAaa-aaaa-aaaa-aaaghhhh..."

Fond memories of the falling-in-a-hole scream echoing through my house.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Suzuran posted:


The tapes are still readable. The reader uses a serial interface, so with a USB-to-serial converter you can read them. Here's one of them copied to my desktop PC.


That is so cool. I love that you can get that working on a modern PC.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Someone remind me what the Win95 demo was like. It was mostly functional just time limited right?

I remember being all MAN gently caress THAT WIN3.1 FOR LIFE 95 LOOKS DUMB but as soon as I fired up that demo I was in love.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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If this gamepad didn't define your 90s PC gaming experience, you missed out. Best pad ever.

The second I saw that, I thought "Jazz Jackrabbit, Commander Keen, Jill of the Jungle".

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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DrBouvenstein posted:

That looks really uncomfortable to hold. Why does it curve up on the left? Just so Nintendo didn't sue them?

Did Nintendo ever freak out about the Gravis pad? I never thought about it before, though the similarity to the Super Famicom controller [those colored buttons ] is undeniable. The Gravis pad didn't have shoulder buttons, if that counts for anything.

Also, the Microsoft pad you posted Dr. Ohnoman was one of my favorites of all time. Sooooo nice. It had a port in the back you could daisy chain controllers together with. That was my go-to emulation controller for a long, long time, until I finally got a Dualshock 2 adapter and used my PS2 controller when the MS pad died.

The MS pad was programmable with macros too [what the center bottom gray button was for, if I recall, and the "Mode" button I think] but I never used 'em.

e. and honestly the Gravis pad wasn't too uncomfortable, at least for my tiny rear end kid hands. My monstrous man-hands might have a problem, though.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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My brother had one of those giant rear-projection TVs when I was growing up, and while looking back the picture was awful, at the time my young mind fixated on HOLY gently caress GIANT NES LOOKS AWESOME

I think that's what established my love for giant displays. First thing I bought when I moved into my house [and thus had the room] was my projector. No other furniture was in the home theater room, just the projector and my PC and me sitting on the ground next to it.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Ha! I've heard the ICQ Uh Oh! in NW Washington and NW Oregon too. I couldn't remember where I'd heard it, but I remember thinking "holy poo poo, that sound!"

Also I've been to a few stations that play the Sonic "pick up a ring" sound when the register processes an order. It's awesome.

And I was in college in early 2000s [graduated 2006] and I remember buying piles of scantron packets at the bookstore.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Krispy Kareem posted:

Getting in on scantron-chat, all the big standardized tests use them. Our neighboring school district got in big trouble for erasing incorrect marks and replacing them with correct answers. Like get fired and go to jail kind of trouble.

Slight derail but is this part of the massive investigation going on with this in Atlanta? I heard on NPR the other day that a bunch of schools got nailed for changing test scores, erasing bad ones and entering good ones.

If I recall, erasing a scantron answer bubble still left quite a mark on it, dark enough that I used to worry that it'd still get picked up as my answer instead of the one I changed it to.

I also always wondered about those mystery bubbles that weren't part of the main answer grid. Never did fill any in, but I always wondered what they controlled.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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UltimoDragonQuest posted:

I've heard the Sonic ring sound. I think it was Virginia.


Wired remote control car.
This technology must have been obsolete when I got it in ~1989. The cable was too short and you had to walk around and follow the car. It was terrible.

Ughhhhhhh this. I had a really awesome monster truck as a kid... which was wired, meaning I had to chase it everywhere. It only had like a 3-4' cord.


Phanatic posted:

The big problem was that the engines weren't designed for a pusher configuration.

In a normal, traction configuration, where the engines are mounted so that the props are in front of the wings, the intakes are behind the cylinders. So the incoming air has passed over the cylinders, cooling them and warming the air, before being ingested by the carburetors. But in the pusher configuration, it's the air intake that's out in front of the wing, so the carbs are ingesting cold, high-altitude air. So the carbs would slowly ice over, and as their intake got more and more restricted, the fuel/air mixture entering the cylinders would become more and more rich, and eventually there'd be so much unburned fuel leaving the cylinder that the engine exhaust would catch fire. Which is Bad.


This is totally awesome, thanks for the info. I never really knew how engines iced over/caught fire, but this makes total sense.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Whoa, that is seriously neat. I love interesting old hardware like that.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Oh man I want one of these so bad.

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Yeah, I beat the living gently caress out of my Galaxy S [first gen] and it kept working until the day I got a Galaxy S3, except the touch screen sometimes registered phantom touches. Skidded that thing across a parking lot and all that happened was the back popped off, and the plastic got a little scuffed on the back, but the screen is still pristine. I use it for an alarm clock still.

My GS3 is shaping up to be pretty good too, not counting Samsung's god-awful built in software [but who doesn't flash something better over the top of carrier provided Android?]

Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

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Pilsner posted:

Maybe I'm wrong, I just see cracked smartphones way more often than I remember seeing cracked regular old phones. I'd be terrified if I dropped my iPhone on asphalt - has anyone tried?

I'm pretty sure my GS3 uses the same glass the iPhone does [Gorilla Glass 2] and I have dropped mine on tile, asphalt, metal from 4-5 feet and it's turned out a-okay. I can't advocate going out and throwing your phone everywhere, but mine seems pretty tough.

e. I destroyed my wife's Vibrant by crushing it between the trunk lid and edge of her trunk though, so high pressure does tend to do them in.

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Code Jockey
Jan 24, 2006

you can call
but I seldom answer after all





Post pictures of it! Reel to reels always seemed really cool to me.

Speaking of media which comes on reels, somewhere in my garage I have my old 8mm and a box full of old cartoon reels. I wonder if they're worth anything? The reels are in great shape, last I checked.

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