Tell us another story from the old days, Grandpa.
Nadine, who also could not resist ;-)
Jeremy H. Griffith wrote:
> On Fri, 17 Apr 2009 10:32:12 -0600, Patrick Fortino <pxforti at gmail.com>
>> But imagine it's 1986 and you are in a computer store looking at
> I can't resist. ;-) In 1986, I was working at a company that
> had pretty much standardized on Macs. People loved them. I had
> one of the older DOS boxes, with a special drive that allowed
> it to read and write Mac disks (for conversion purposes). Macs
> were so "special" other machines couldn't read the disks at all,
> even at the record level, much less write to them.
>> One the hand, you have DOS with it's blinking cursor waiting for
>> instructions from you. If only you knew what those instructions were.
> Yes, it did call for knowing what you were doing. ;-) But
> so did the Mac. How long did it take *you* to figure out that
> the way to eject a floppy, other than the paperclip taped to
> every Mac, was to drag it to the Trash??? This was intuitive? <bg>
>> On the other hand, you have a Mac Plus, it's friendly face and graphic
>> interface inviting you to experiment. Both computers will pretty much
>> do what you want, the big difference being ease of use and cost. Macs
>> were easier to use and cost a LOT more (I'm not trying to start a
>> windows v mac battle here: I use both and think they are now pretty
>> even on ease of use).
> Back then, Macs had another interesting feature. If anything
> went wrong during a write to the floppy, a daily event, the
> entire disk became unusable. You discovered this the next time
> you inserted your wonderful project, and the Mac offered to
> format the "damaged" disk for you. You could literally hear
> the screams from one end of the office to the other.
> So on that DOS box, I studied the Mac filesystem on the disks.
> After a while I worked out the rules for it (Apple wouldn't
> tell you, unlike, say, IBM), and wrote a simple program to
> fix up a very common (and harmless) error made by the Mac if
> it wasn't totally done with the disk before it was removed.
> (It wasn't updating the free list until then, so a block just
> written would be in both the used and free lists, and the Mac
> threw up its hands. I just removed any used blocks from the
> free list and updated it.)
> After a while there was a steady stream of folks with tearstained
> faces gingerly clutching a floppy coming to my desk. It took a
> few seconds for my program to fix them up. They went back to
> work on the easier-to-use system... much happier. <vbg>
> My point? It's *not* that easier is worse. It's that every
> tool has its use, and if you master them all, you are better
> off than those who limit themselves to one. Even if you think
> it's the easiest. ;-)
> And what did you expect, on Friday afternoon? <g>
> -- Jeremy H. Griffith, at Omni Systems Inc.
> <jeremy at omsys.com> http://www.omsys.com/
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