Vintage Computer Equipment

There From the Start

Twenty-three years ago, I spent my days and nights avoiding the drudgery of sitting in my college classes, but becoming educated nonetheless. Sitting in my room on the seventh floor of Willham Hall South at Oklahoma State University, I discovered the commercial web at the dawn of its existence. It just so happened two months into the start of my sophomore year, Netscape was released and the computing world would never be the same.

To be sure, I had already spent thousands of hours in the “online” world, just nothing like what the web brought to the table. Earlier in the 1990s, my room at home filled with virtual visitors from the two bulletin board systems (BBS’s) I ran from a hand-built 286 PC. While most high schoolers were excited to get a separate phone line for chatting with friends, mine was occupied 24/7 by anonymous Okies dialing in to The Slaughterhouse over our 9600bps modem.

By 1994, I was ensconced at OSU and we had what was considered “high-speed” internet access at the time. I can’t remember what the performance was, but it was certainly much better than anything available at home. Having given up on the Windows PC by this point, I helped three fellow dorm residents find used Macs – all compact black and white models, all we could afford – and get connected to the school network.

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Continue Reading "In Search of the Early Web"
chip cards

Chip Card, or Watching Paint Dry? By most accounts, the switch to EMV, or “chip” credit cards here in the US hasn’t worked out so well. Right now the roll-out is uneven at best. I make at least half a dozen payments a day with my credit and debit cards and the experience is pretty random. Will I insert the card into the reader, or slide it? Will there be a crumpled, hand-written note on the card machine that tells me what to do, or…Continue Reading “Will EMV Slowness Make Apple Pay More Appealing?”

iCloud for Windows Control Panel

It’s Possible to Sync Between Byword on iOS and Your Favorite Windows Markdown Editor I’m way late to the game, but I just started to create my blog posts with Markdown instead of plain text or directly in WordPress (what’s Markdown?). Working with Markdown is great, frankly. My main problem was to come up with a workflow that… worked. I Want Simple, Not Complex I want to be able to create my posts on my iPhone and my Windows PC and have the files completely in…Continue Reading “How to Create a Blogging Workflow from Byword to Windows and Back”

Attention to detail sometimes makes all the difference, whether you are designing the next great mobile phone or laptop, or putting together a new email and landing page for an online marketing campaign. Regardless, one must pay attention to all facets including presentation, ease of use and the overall customer experience. Let’s look at some illustrative examples: Consider the design of the laptop power adapter above. A generic PC experience that is familiar and comfortable – everyone has seen and knows how to use one…Continue Reading “Elegance Counts – in Marketing As Well As Product Design”

Use of Internet Explorer 8 has been falling in most quarters pretty quickly quarter over quarter as users decide to move on to more modern and robust browsers (or update their OS and no longer have IE 8 available). Unfortunately, one group of users are laggards as might be expected – those on corporate PCs. Enterprise users, especially those in organizations that employ custom developed software or are subject to security or other standards that make the upgrade process slower, are going to be stuck…Continue Reading “Declining Support for Internet Explorer 8 Spells Trouble for Enterprise Users”