Re: Getting High and Writing

Subject: Re: Getting High and Writing
From: "Elna Tymes" <etymes -at- lts -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 24 Oct 2000 13:04:51 -0700

Xenophane Xenophane wrote:

> Long before Microsoft came into existence and before HP shoved their
> politically correct agenda down our throats, writers and engineers would
> often attend parties where a table was full of coke and the room was filled
> with smoke.
> Free expression ruled and writers and engineers worked together to produce
> an array of products....yes, in their drug-induced state they produced some
> of the best things that we now take for granted....or have you never heard
> that Silicon Valley's Cocaine culture produced some of the best ideas?

I hope that the rest of this board realized that the person who wrote this had
to have his/her foot so far in the speaking orifice that they were choking.
"Long before Microsoft came into existence" would have been prior to 1980.
PC's didn't really amount to much of the marketplace, and HP wasn't paying
attention to that corner of the world. Nor, for that matter, did they require
drug tests.

"Free expression" most assuredly did NOT rule in the computer industry. By
today's standards, it was almost military in structure, and writers got almost
no respect whatsoever. Design sessions tended to be top-down, with very little
freedom of innovation. As for writers and engineers working together to
produce products - the writer had to have seen that happen in a dream, because
it sure didn't happen in real life. As for being in a "drug-induced state,"
there were probably some programmers who worked that way, but in the early
1980's there were far more penalties for showing up stoned than there are now.
And as for "tables filled with coke and rooms filled with smoke," that usually
only happened at Comdex or selected other trade shows.

"Silicon Valley's Cocaine Culture" is purely a figment of this writer's
imagination. While cocaine was available in the early 1980's, it was certainly
not popular and openly available among Silicon Valley developers. If there was
a "Cocaine Culture," it existed largely in the minds of the marketeers with
more exaggerated lifestyles. Granted, some programmers and some writers had
individual access to drugs, but it was not the norm.

I know. I was there.

Elna Tymes
Los Trancos Systems

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