off topic: new car advice for senior

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through

had

into

It's hard to believe that MS, Intel and ARPA both thought we would all be one big happy family of computer users and security wasn't really necessary. Hence the net and PCs have been insecure from the ground up for a long time.
--
Bobby G.



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On 10/4/2015 7:54 PM, Robert Green wrote:

The 'net was initially an elitist tool. Effectively "invitation only"; you counted on someone ELSE to get you *onto* it so "behaved responsibly". You always had someone who was effectively your benefactor (remember "bang" routing for mail??)
The PC's problem was that it was underpowered to start with. It was just a fancy CP/M machine -- single user, etc. Security was commonplace in bigger systems (MULTICS, etc.) but too troublesome to implement on a tiny dog like a PC (XT).
And, of course, MS was never an innovator. So, they just looked at CP/M and figured "good enough"...
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On 10/04/2015 09:27 PM, Don Y wrote:

Too bad IBM didn't go with CP/M-86. Another sad story.
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On 09/30/2015 03:48 AM, Robert Green wrote:

I never owned a genuine IBM PC and didn't have compatibility problems. Some were hotter than PCs, in more ways than one.
I'm always amused when people I consider to be toward the left end of the political spectrum favor Apple products. I guess they like the 'my way or the highway' approach Apple has always used.
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On Wed, 30 Sep 2015 08:25:27 -0700 (PDT), Uncle Monster

They drive Bimmers ans Audballs too.
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was

It really depended on the clone and what you were doing with it. I have seen compatibility issues and have worked through some of them, mostly with high-end graphics and with HW manufacturers deciding to cleverly make use of areas of memory IBM had marked as "resevered" in their tech manuals. Remember the days of EMS and expanded memory and programs like 386 to the Max?

I've purchased and seen some pretty wild looking CPU coolers. Big copper pad coolers that look like the Guggenheim museum. Coolers with thin fins spread out like a card-sharp's show-off deal. Never did get into overclocking in a big way so I never got into water-cooled rigs. Although I never saw much point in overclocking, a PC design engineer I talked to said that overclockers provided excellent feedback about PC designs and limitations because they were right on the bleeding edge.

Hey, even I am considering getting an iPhone because I was unimpressed by the Android "industry's" reaction to the StageFright bug. It also torques me up to see that every damn version of Android is slightly different.
Apple controls their whole eco-system and generally delivers a more uniform experience. When the StageFright bug was found, Google, Samsung and others appeared to stall, pointing fingers at others while trying to decide who should fix what. Apple just mostly fixes the stuff without the corporate drama.
I've read a number of case studies that ask why Apple makes virtually all the profit in the cell phone industry. (Really, only Samsung makes a profit - the rest operate at a loss).
http://nyti.ms/1Qp3ipy
The reason is partly snob appeal but it's also because Apples seem to be very well-liked by the people that use them. Far more so than Android users like their phones.
As for politics, my wife, a retired Army colonel somewhere to the right of Atilla the Hun, loves her iPhone. I've always been on the PC/clone side of the Apple/Wintel war, but I will probably end up getting an iPhone. If it's going to become the hub of my computer operations, I want it to come from a company that's on the ball.
--
Bobby G.



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On 10/1/2015 11:30 AM, Robert Green wrote:

I use an I6 *(the previous smaller I4GS was just as good and an easier fit in your pocket) and will say its a nice 'phone/tablet/clock/radio/gamer/whatever gadget'.
But then again I am still working.
When I retire a *much less expensive* 'phone/tablet/clock/radio/gamer/whatever gadget' will be my choice.
John
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<stuff snipped>

Just the reverse here. I am getting into telemedicine and the iPhone has a lot of features that will be very useful.
--
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On 10/01/2015 09:30 AM, Robert Green wrote:

We had a few with the old AT form factor that had a few embellishments. You definitely didn't want to put the tin back on.
Vapor phase cooling, that's where it's at. It wasn't a computer but the first company I worked for made industrial dielectric preheaters for the plastics industry. The largest model was 15KW. Then there was the chief engineer's pet project. He wanted to squeeze 50KW out of a big Eimac triode and figured vapor phase was the way to go. The condenser had a striking resemblance to a Falcon radiator. What could go wrong with a 50KW Colpitts oscillator / steam kettle?

I wasn't even thinking about the iPhones, just the Apple desktop/laptops. My phone technology is stuck at the $19.95 LG flip phone level.
I did get an Android tablet when the company decided we needed a tablet product. As a developer I can attest Google throws a few curves with every new release. Fortunately I can still build and run the app on my old 4.0 and it mostly works. From our viewpoint, Android is much handier since we can just load up the apk and never go anywhere near the Google store.

That definitely helps.

They do have a dedicated customer base. The only Apple product I've ever owned is an iShuffle my boss gave out on Christmas. I didn't really appreciate the iTunes part of it. I have nothing against Apple but nobody ever wanted to pay me to develop Apple software. The closest I ever got was one DoD project where there were some of the 1st gen Macs. They were crap but they did meet the TEMPEST requirements.\

I pretty much hate phones in general. I guess an iPhone could be okay if I never had to talk on it.
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On 10/1/2015 7:32 PM, rbowman wrote:

Apple products remind me too much of B&O. Too much emphasis on "glitz" over function. My iPods are tedious to use -- a *mechanical* wheel (or even a four way navigation bar) would be far more reliable as an input device than the capacitive "dial" that it employs. Try using it without WATCHING what you are doing! Ditto for every other Apple product.

Ditto for hating phones. I don't think I would use an iPhone for anything that I can't already do with a PDA -- just more horses under the hood!
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On 10/01/2015 09:16 PM, Don Y wrote:

The iShuffle is so simple it isn't difficult to use. However the MP3 players I use most often are Sansas. Plug them into the USB port and they look like any other mass storage device. iirc I had to use iTunes to load the iShuffle and iTunes has to be the most complicated, counter-intuitive software I've ever used.
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On 10/2/2015 6:51 AM, rbowman wrote:

Yes, the iShuffle is the one that looks like a glorified "tie tack"? (no display, USB connection is made through the *earphone* connector?)

I have two Sansa's. IIRC, one of them needed a "music converter" to get the tunes into the correct format (?). They also have an entertaining animation when they power up/down (?)

Look into Floola (free) to maintain your iPod(s). iTunes is more of the "everything Apple" mentality -- make you feel like you are ALWAYS in a store! MS did something similar with the Zune -- which *could* have been an interesting device (but for being locked into MS's little world).
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On 10/02/2015 10:59 AM, Don Y wrote:

That's the one.

I never ran into that. I'm a dinosaur so I buy CDs mostly and rip them. I just copy the mp3 files over. I've got an old Creative Zen Nano that is the same.
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Dunno if you ever watch "Robot Chicken" but they spoofed Zune in a segment about how Steve Jobs made so much preceding technology obsolete. In the end, the Zune Man begs Steve to make his execution quick but Jobs replies "I wouldn't waste a bullet on you."
The Zune lingered on for an embarrassing long time. At least when Amazon's "Fire Phone" tanked, they dragged the corpse off the battlefield pretty quickly.
--
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Amazon was selling a whole busload of refurbed Sansa Clips. What a great deal and they do flawless voice recording, too. I think they top out with a 32Gb TF card (some have 4 some have 8GB of internal memory). Great audio quality, built-in FM radio, good search and sort capabilities and only one fatal flaw. The batteries are soldered in and HELL to replace when they day. All but one of the refurbs have performed as well as new and I was paying only $20 each for them.
While lots of people piss and moan about how "bad" things are, when I look at my wall of CDs and realize that it all fits on one little Sansa Clip I think "wow" - what a brave new world we live in. Same with phones and tablets that take instant movies and photos, some with amazing quality (new iPhones do 4K video). For a guy that ran a color darkroom for decades, it's an unbelievable leap forward.
Same with TVs where you can now get resolution that looks just like a projected Kodachrome 25 slide. We've lived through some amazing times and progress. My old LTD with a 429 got 7 miles to the gallon but it was worth every drop when you floored it.
--
Bobby G.



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Robert Green wrote:

Yes, indeed we're. From vacuum tubes to Nano-tech. Living thru with them yet.
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worth

I really can't remember the world before Google and the Internet. Where did we look things up? I know I used to go to the library at least once a week before the Internet and I haven't been back in years.
Today I bought a little body cam. It's a clip on camera that records in HD to a 32Gb micro SD card that makes very professional looking videos and it's no bigger than my thumb. I remember the summer I interned for WABC TV that the cameras we used were the size of cinder blocks and weighed nearly as much and they couldn't even record in HD.
That's progress in my book!
--
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On 10/10/2015 06:02 PM, Robert Green wrote:

I still hit the library regularly to pick up mind rot but I haven't done any serious researching there in years unless I was bumming the wifi.
I take that back. Last week I was looking for a book by Celine. I was having a senior moment and couldn't come up with a first name. A search of the catalog turned up about 40 pages of Celine Dion who I was pretty sure wasn't who I was looking for. So I wandered over to the reference section and eventually found an encyclopedia of literature that soon informed me I was looking for Louis-Ferdinand, the pen name of Louis Destouches. Back to the catalog search. No Louis-Ferdinand in the entire system so I bought the damn thing from Amazon. They only had the one I wanted in paperback, not Kindle, so I had to wait two days for it.
It's not only looking things up, it's getting things. I try to buy local but this town isn't a huge market and the merchants can't afford to have every odd gadget in stock. I've even had people tell me 'No we don't have so and so but we can order it. Or you probably can use your computer just as well as we can.' In one case, I was trying to buy a car radio for a new model. They couldn't come up with a dash kit even after I gave them the part number. Back to Amazon, and I had the dash kit and radio in a couple of days. Then there was the web site with photos and detailed instructions on how to rip apart a Toyota dash to install the radio.
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On 10/10/2015 7:40 PM, rbowman wrote:

I use the public library: - as a source for "free" rental DVD's (we don't watch broadcast/CATV; just "movies" or "series" off DVD) - reference city/county data (researching property taxes, etc.) - reference texts available via ILL (some titles: _Pai Gow Poker_, _From text to speech: The MITalk System_) - research papers usually only available through "subscription" services ("A Simple Method of Computing the Input Quantization and Multiplication Roundoff Errors in a Digital Filter") - scant few titles that I'd never want to have to keep on my own shelves (we've been actively ridding ourselves of books/paper for the past 20 years -- let the *library* keep a copy of the latest NEC, CRC, etc.)
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<stuff snipped>

Reminds me of a few years ago if you ran a search for "soprano" you'd get Tony and not any singers.

Even in places with lots of brick and mortar stores AND things in stock I still prefer Amazon for lots of reasons. I've never had anyone rear-end me on the way to the mailbox to pick up a package from Amazon but it did happen in the Home Depot parking lot. Let UPS take the risk.

Kinda sad, in a way. They know their days are probably numbered. What I have found is that local merchants see slowing sales and then reduce the inventory they are holding. That's a classic death spiral.

I always look at the ratings and read them in detail (lots of idiots who give it 5 stars and then write "I haven't actually used the product yet." <sigh>
However, I see some bad consequences for all this in the not-to-distant future. Who could really be a competitor to Amazon? Wal-mart is faced with the dilemma of their on-line business cannibalizing their retail stores so they treat on-line sales as a poor relation. Other big general-item merchants have died like flies. What happens when only Amazon remains?
Yet those concerns haven't stopped me from running up quite a tab there. (-: Now they offer same-day delivery on many items. What's not to like?
--
Bobby G.



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