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Discussion in 'Computers and Gaming' started by Gramaisc, Oct 25, 2018.

  1. Gramaisc

    Gramaisc Forum O. G.

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    I was reminded of these pictures recently.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    A 're-enactment' of delivering a device with the same capacity as the 1957 one in the B/W picture...


    I recently bought a couple of 1TB USB sticks to use as cyclic off-site back-ups. It occurred to me that you could easily fit four of them in a matchbox.

    To replicate their capacity using multiple versions of the first hard-drive that I had - and still run - would need a pile of units that would fill the entire internal capacity of my house, including the attic - just for one stick, not both.
     
    darben, BobClay, age'd parent and 6 others like this.
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  3. Gramaisc

    Gramaisc Forum O. G.

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    In Ireland, there were no postal codes at all until three years ago - you often had to invent some random sequence to keep an online address form happy. - but, then they instituted a system that defines each single premises. For the first year, it wasn't usable through Google Maps, you had to use the Eircode site directly, and I rather forgot about it, until just now, when I discovered that you can search on Google Maps with it now and get a marker on the actual house and a Street View of the front - no more trying to read the numbers on the wheelie bins, as you often have to do here, with the UK's block system.

    The Irish system is vaguely area-based, but not sequential, so you can always slip a new code for a new building in between two existing ones.
     
  4. Gramaisc

    Gramaisc Forum O. G.

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    Here's an interesting Eircode - V95 RP0E.

    Difficult to be sure how far it is from the road...
     
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  5. Thehooperman

    Thehooperman Well-Known Forumite

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    Its about 100m according to Google maps.

    They do afternoon tea by appointment as well. I wonder if Mrs Doyle serves it to you.
     
  6. Gramaisc

    Gramaisc Forum O. G.

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    But, can you be sure?

     
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  7. Cue

    Cue Well-Known Forumite

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    Woah woah woah. Hang on.

    Did you buy sticks or portable hard drives? Because you don’t strike me as the type to spend £300 on a USB stick.

    (This isn’t a jab, if you got a 1TB USB stick for a two digit price whatever you do don’t use it for backups)
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2018
  8. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    Makes you wonder at the progress when I think back to the early 90's when I worked at a place where if you were on the night watch, you changed out the backup drives just after midnight each night. The hard drives were about the size of a washing machine. You opened them from the top and heaved out a large pack of Winchester disks, each disk about the size of an LP. These were heavy but delicate. You then carried them down to the storage area where you did the old 'Grandfather,' 'Father,' 'Son' shuffle and carried a disk pack back for re-loading. If I remember right the capacity for each pack was about 700 Mbytes !! … small beer these days … :o
    In 1996 all this was upgraded to small machines about the size of a modern tower PC and you didn't replace disks as such, but simply switched between towers (there was plenty of room in the building because it was built to suit that older technology.) I often wonder what it's like now (20 years on.) Probably all of it is squeezed into a broom cupboard at the backend of the toilet block, while the large building has been converted to squash courts (no put intended.) :hmm:
     
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  9. Noah

    Noah Well-Known Forumite

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    When I was a volunteer at the Cambridge Museum of Technology there was buried in the lower basement a hard disc drive from one of the early computers in the City. The disc was about 2' 6" in diameter and 2" thick, the read heads looked like large headphones and the cast iron beam holding the motor and electrical gubbins was about 6' long. Always gave the impression that it dated from an era when the local blacksmith doubled up as your computer engineer and nowadays it would look great in a steampunk setting. If I remember correctly the storage capacity was around 360 bytes - and yes I do mean bytes.
     
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  10. Gramaisc

    Gramaisc Forum O. G.

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    This was my first hard disc - 20 MB and still running happily, thirty years on.

    About a foot square and two inches thick.

    [​IMG]
     
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  11. c0tt0nt0p

    c0tt0nt0p Well-Known Forumite

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    As 16/17 year old growing up in West Yorkshire I saved enough money for my first PC, a Packard Bell 386SX running at 16Mhz...It didn't even run Windows 3.0.
    It came with 1 or 2 MB of Ram but there was space to upgrade and add more. Unfortunately for me at the time I went to get some more there was a worldwide RAM shortage caused by a massive fire stopping the largest producer of memory chips. I ended up paying £120 for a 1MB stick of RAM !! :mad:
     
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  12. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    This new model of Alexa the Amazon Echo has got me a bit worried though ….. :heyhey:

    HALexa.jpg
     
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  13. Gramaisc

    Gramaisc Forum O. G.

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    I am currently sitting in a shed, a good way from the house, listening to a You Tube video on a better connection than I get in Stafford - in a 'town' with a population of about thirteen hundred, where, forty years ago, there were single figure phone numbers and no dials on the wind-up phones.



    To hear this here, back then when it was current, I would have had to transport the LP over...
     
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  14. RobUSA

    RobUSA Well-Known Forumite

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    When I was a lad our town phone system was just old cans with bits of string attached.....they don't know they're born today!
     
  15. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    String ???? ……………. LUXURY !!!
     
  16. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    This is the working replica of the Colossus Computer in the Computer Museum alongside Bletchley Park. This was originally built by a young Post Office engineer by the name of Tommy Flowers to help dig out the intelligence from the Lorenz Cypher Machine. The working of the Lorenz coding had been brilliantly worked out by master code breaker Bill Tutte, but because this was a binary based coding system, to get the data out quickly for it to be of use (this was German High Command Intelligence) they needed something new. So they came up with a 'digital computer' using valves !!!
    And it worked.
    Took this pix a couple of years ago during a Sparky's reunion do.
    Colossus.jpg
     
  17. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    I don't want you to think I'm anti-valve, I'm not. I've worked all valve radio stations and radars and other things. One thing however I've learned with valves which doesn't apply to modern day solid state electronics engineers (pansies :heyhey:) is that you need to be very careful what you touch.

    Tommy Flowers persuaded the resident sceptics of that day that valves would be reliable, as long as you didn't keep switching them on and off. Turn them on, and leave them on was his formula. (He was after all a Post Office engineer, working on the biggest machines in the world .. telephone networks.)

    I've still got HT burn marks on my arm and a wobbly gyro from touching the wrong things on valve circuits. The upside is once that lesson is learned, it's learned forever.
    :buddy:
     
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  18. Noah

    Noah Well-Known Forumite

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    Fascinating person, Tommy Flowers, really ought to be better known as one of the founders of the British computing industry.
     
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