mike.h on Tue, 8 Jul 2003 23:52:13 -0400

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Re: [PLUG] Tech jobs and politics, and IT diploma mills

On Tue, 2003-07-08 at 22:34, Magnus wrote:
> On Tuesday, July 8, 2003, at 10:12 PM, William H. Magill wrote:
> > Keeping old machines running for "historical" or "fond memories" 
> > reasons is a far cry from passing them off to others as "computers." 
> > (I have enough of them in the basement myself.)
> What do you think pays for parts for the toys?  I've restored & resold 
> literally hundreds of old PC's in my spare time, PC's that would be 
> thrown out by most people (which is how I got them) but embraced by 
> someone who only had $50-$75 to spend on the family computer.
> --
> C. Magnus Hedemark
> http://trilug.org/~chrish
> PGP Key fingerprint = 984D 9A88 3D60 016F BE01 1506 60FB 85E1 9ABD 96F6

Go Magnus! Sometime in the 1980's I bought an IBM PC XT (8088) for $125.
Elitist geeks of my acquaintance scoffed. The 386 was then the dominant
machine, the 486 was introduced a few months later. Although I gave the
machine to a thrift shop about a year later, today I consider that $125
investment (which was all I could afford at the time) one of the
smartest investments that I ever made.

My purpose in buying that machine was for typing contracts for my
business. Although large parts of every contract were identical
(legalese), up until then I'd typed each one by hand on a typewriter.

When I upgraded my word processor to Word Perfect, I was astonished to
discover that the spell checker performed about 100 times faster than
the previous word processor's had on the same hardware.

Thus began a fascination with algorithms that continues to this day. I
learned to program on that machine, and eventually returned to college
to get my comp sci degree. Although I outgrew that machine quite
quickly, when I donated it, it could still do everything that it had
done when it was new and cost $3999. It could certainly do for another
what it done for me, which was plenty. It solved a business need, it
entertained and fascinated me, and it launched me into a new career in
which I'm still gainfully employed.

So someone like Magnus sold me a computer that some folk already
considered obsolete. He did me quite a favor.

It serves no one to judge ourselves superior.

GnuPG public key:

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