First, the response was in reference to a MS NT setup, that would
require commercial licensing fees that could easily run into hundreds
or even thousands of dollars, unless the idea was to try and get away
with operating an unlicensed setup and hope not to get sued. Of
course, a knowledgeable person could do it with open source software
as well. That just wasn't what was described.

Second, the setup required a "php-based web interface to a database",
which would require a knowledgeable person to configure for the needs
of the convention. If that skill wasn't freely available to the
convention organizers, then they would have to pay for that work.

The hardware is minor. A satisfactory server-based system could
probably be put together with hardware currently considered "obsolete"
by industry standards for even less then you quoted. It is the cost of
legal use and skilled labor that could easily push it to 100x the cost
of the original setup described. Assuming that the organizers did all
the setup themselves, they probably didn't spend anything. Probably
sprang for some new floppy disks would be about it.

On 5/28/14, Christopher Evans <aaxiomfin...@gmail.com> wrote:
> 100x the cost?  what the cost of a server ? 400. a couple of surplus
> laptops at 200 a wifi router for 150 = 750 estimate
>
> --
> -chris
> Computer Consultant & Repair Tech
> Digitalatoll Solutions Group (Tawhaki Software)
> http://digitalatoll.com/
> http://tawakisoft.com/
> Cell: 916-612-6904
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>
>
>
>
>
>
> On Wed, May 28, 2014 at 7:09 AM, <mcelha...@usnetizen.com> wrote:
>
>> A far superior arrangement for probably 100x the cost. Perhaps the
>> convention organizers preferred to spend that money on things that
>> were more meaningful to the convention attendees. Or maybe they just
>> wanted to keep the money for themselves? Who knows?
>>
>>
>> On 5/27/14, Christopher Evans <aaxiomfin...@gmail.com> wrote:
>> > I would have implemented WinNT networked laptops running a php
>> registration
>> > signin/signup form in a browser that communicates with central
>> > database.
>> > and allow badge printing by network printer.
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> > --
>> > -chris
>> > Computer Consultant & Repair Tech
>> > Digitalatoll Solutions Group (Tawhaki Software)
>> > http://digitalatoll.com/
>> > http://tawakisoft.com/
>> > Cell: 916-612-6904
>> > Webpages, Email hosting, Cloud FTP Hosting, and Custom programming
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> > On Tue, May 27, 2014 at 8:14 PM, dmccunney
>> > <dennis.mccun...@gmail.com>wrote:
>> >
>> >> On Tue, May 27, 2014 at 6:45 PM, Matej Horvat
>> >> <matej.hor...@guest.arnes.si> wrote:
>> >>
>> >> > So the fact that DOS was used is completely irrelevant, though it is
>> >> > nice
>> >> > to know it's being used. :)
>> >>
>> >> DOS pops up in odd places.  In 2006, I attended LACon IV, the 54th
>> >> annual World Science Fiction Convention, held that year in Los
>> >> Angeles, CA.  The Worldcon attracts  about 5,000 attendees.
>> >> Registration for the event was handled in DOS.  They had a batch of
>> >> ancient laptops with a 3.5" floppy drive but no HD.  They booted from
>> >> a DOS floppy, and ran DBase III.  Once DBase was running, they swapped
>> >> in a data disk where registration info was stored as people
>> >> registered.  When registration got busy, they added more registrars
>> >> and handed out more old laptops.  Once an hour or so, they'd do a
>> >> synchronization operation so everyone had a current copy of the
>> >> database.  The registration head who set up the system had been a
>> >> programmer at Ashton-Tate back when, and "wrote some of the more
>> >> annoying stuff in DBase III".
>> >>
>> >> I was tickled.  Most such conventions use networked PCs with the
>> >> database residing on a backend server, or perhaps terminals connected
>> >> to a multi-user server running Linux.  This dispensed with servers,
>> >> networks, and current PCs, using only ancient recycled hardware and
>> >> MS-DOS era software.  It did the job while eliminating several levels
>> >> of complexity and cost.  I told the guy who set it all up that it was
>> >> a perfectly valid approach, and one I would not have thought of.  I
>> >> was impressed, and said so.
>> >> ______
>> >> Dennis
>> >> https://plus.google.com/u/0/105128793974319004519
>> >>
>> >>
>> >>
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>>
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