RE: Old PC Technology (too long, sorry)

Subject: RE: Old PC Technology (too long, sorry)
From: "Evans, Diane L (Rosetta)" <diane_evans -at- merck -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Thu, 8 Mar 2007 08:45:33 -0800

"The last time I was here, I rented a manual typewriter over *there*
for something like 50 cents an hour..."

I remember those days. At the University of Washington, we had electric
typewriters that cost 10 cents for 10 minutes. You would take a roll of
dimes, put one in, and type furiously until it turned off. I learned to
type really, really, fast there.

The first home computer that I programmed was a VIC-20. From Wikipedia:
The VIC-20 is an 8-bit home computer. It was made by Commodore Business
Machines, with 5 KB RAM and a MOS 6502 CPU. The machine's external
design was later used by the Commodore 64 and C16. The VIC-20 was
released in Japan in 1980, and in the U.S. and Europe in 1981, roughly
three years after Commodore's first personal computer, the PET. The
VIC-20 was the first microcomputer to sell one million units.

I could make those 5 KB RAM fly! My largest program was used for
close-captioning church services for the deaf. In a church service, a
lot of liturgy is the same week to week. I made a series of one-, two-,
and three-letter abbreviations that represented these phrases and showed
the entire phrase on the screen. So, instead of typing "In the name of
Jesus Christ, Amen" the typist simply typed "Q" (for quit). The program
was stored on a tape drive, and took about 15 minutes to load.

The first user manual I wrote, in 1986, was produced with an IBM
DisplayWriter. A 9-inch disk could hold about 15 or 20 documents; when
our disks became full, we had to select which documents to print and
save in our file cabinets instead of keeping on disc. (If we hadn't
opened the document for three months, we didn't need it on disk).

Now, we have three adults living at home, and 5 computers counting my
laptop. I carry over $1000 of electronics in my purse -- camera,
Nintendo DS Lite (love Brain Age), PDA, phone, and my Zune!

Diane Evans
Requirements Analyst
Rosetta Inpharmatics

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Re: Old PC Technology (too long, sorry): From: Nancy Allison

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