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Re: [midatlanticretro] They Don't Make Computer Manuals Like They Used To

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  • Jim Scheef
    So can we do a better job of collecting documentation? (rhetorical question) The fact that Bitsavers has so much is no excuse for us to not make every effort
    Message 1 of 21 , Mar 7, 2010
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      So can we do a better job of collecting documentation? (rhetorical question) The fact that Bitsavers has so much is no excuse for us to not make every effort to collect and preserve original copies of manuals. Such a library should make the museum a destination for historians and collectors to do research. Plug and Play was the worst thing that ever happened to documentation. Manufacturers think they can just say "plug it in and it will work" and when it does, everyone is happy. But when it doesn't, there to no way to debug.

      Jim

      On 2/25/2010 7:59 PM, Evan Koblentz wrote:
       

      Yeesh .... I kept reading and Bob A.'s name comes up, including the answer to my question.  Amazing.

      ------------ --------- --------- --------- ------

      Ha .... You read my mind!  I was just about to reply and say, "Let's see if we can get either The Bobs to comment on this."

      Do you know who wrote the manuals?

      ------------ --------- --------- --------- ------
      Glad you enjoyed them :)

      A lot of people focus on the hardware and software of the early days, but most of the stories behind the scenes go untold.  The stories are the best part!  The early 80s was a very exciting time in the personal computer world and a few of us were fortunate enough to work for personal computer companies back then.

      Bob


      On Feb 25, 2010, at 6:36 PM, ysgdhio wrote:

       

      http://www.ironicsa ns.com/2010/ 02/they_dont_ make_computer_ manual.html

      (Wouldn't have been half as good without the added commentary by Bob!)

      Cheers,
      Andy

       
  • Bob Applegate
    Since this is of personal interest to me, keep in mind that there is documentation and then there are the things that went on behind the scenes. Docs are
    Message 2 of 21 , Mar 7, 2010
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      Since this is of personal interest to me, keep in mind that there is documentation and then there are the things that went on behind the scenes.  Docs are important, but a lot of the docs have stuff that nobody notices until the "inside story" gets told, as was the case with the web page that started this whole discussion.  I can probably find copies of the Franklin ACE-1000 documentation at a number of computer museums, but how many curators know what all the pictures mean?  100 years from now there will still be vintage computers sitting in collections along with the docs, but little of the history or inside stories.  Believe me, a LOT of interesting things went on at the time that never got documented :)

      I remember one of the first episodes of Futurama when Fry and Leela go to the moon and watch a stage presentation about the early space program, none of which is told correctly.  Is the same fate awaiting the early days of personal computers?  Only Microsoft, IBM and Apple will have any legacy?

      Bob


      On Mar 7, 2010, at 1:40 PM, Jim Scheef wrote:

       

      So can we do a better job of collecting documentation? (rhetorical question) The fact that Bitsavers has so much is no excuse for us to not make every effort to collect and preserve original copies of manuals. Such a library should make the museum a destination for historians and collectors to do research. Plug and Play was the worst thing that ever happened to documentation. Manufacturers think they can just say "plug it in and it will work" and when it does, everyone is happy. But when it doesn't, there to no way to debug.

      Jim

      On 2/25/2010 7:59 PM, Evan Koblentz wrote:

       

      Yeesh .... I kept reading and Bob A.'s name comes up, including the answer to my question.  Amazing.

      ------------ --------- --------- --------- ------

      Ha .... You read my mind!  I was just about to reply and say, "Let's see if we can get either The Bobs to comment on this."

      Do you know who wrote the manuals?

      ------------ --------- --------- --------- ------
      Glad you enjoyed them :)

      A lot of people focus on the hardware and software of the early days, but most of the stories behind the scenes go untold.  The stories are the best part!  The early 80s was a very exciting time in the personal computer world and a few of us were fortunate enough to work for personal computer companies back then.

      Bob


      On Feb 25, 2010, at 6:36 PM, ysgdhio wrote:

       

      http://www.ironicsa ns.com/2010/ 02/they_dont_ make_computer_ manual.html

      (Wouldn't have been half as good without the added commentary by Bob!)

      Cheers,
      Andy

       


    • B Degnan
      One of the best ways to document beyond a manual is to create a well-written web page that is facing the public internet on the subject. There are a few
      Message 3 of 21 , Mar 7, 2010
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        One of the best ways to document beyond a manual is to create a well-written web page that is facing the public internet on the subject.   There are a few groups collecting every page on the public facing internet, helping insure that this and all information is preserved.
        bd

          Bob Applegate wrote:
        Since this is of personal interest to me, keep in mind that there is documentation and then there are the things that went on behind the scenes.  Docs are important, but a lot of the docs have stuff that nobody notices until the "inside story" gets told, as was the case with the web page that started this whole discussion.  I can probably find copies of the Franklin ACE-1000 documentation at a number of computer museums, but how many curators know what all the pictures mean?  100 years from now there will still be vintage computers sitting in collections along with the docs, but little of the history or inside stories.  Believe me, a LOT of interesting things went on at the time that never got documented :)

        I remember one of the first episodes of Futurama when Fry and Leela go to the moon and watch a stage presentation about the early space program, none of which is told correctly.  Is the same fate awaiting the early days of personal computers?  Only Microsoft, IBM and Apple will have any legacy?

        Bob


        On Mar 7, 2010, at 1:40 PM, Jim Scheef wrote:

         

        So can we do a better job of collecting documentation? (rhetorical question) The fact that Bitsavers has so much is no excuse for us to not make every effort to collect and preserve original copies of manuals. Such a library should make the museum a destination for historians and collectors to do research. Plug and Play was the worst thing that ever happened to documentation. Manufacturers think they can just say "plug it in and it will work" and when it does, everyone is happy. But when it doesn't, there to no way to debug.

        Jim


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      • Bob Applegate
        ... Well, that was completely my fault, not Evan s. He called to ask if I d have something together for VCF but I was really focused on too many things and
        Message 4 of 21 , Mar 8, 2010
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          Jack99rubin <jack.rubin@...> wrote :

          >Which is exactly why I urged you to do a "Franklin Panel" for VCF a few years ago! I probably should have just attached Evan to your ankle. You and Franklin are an integral part of the "revolution" and you/we should be interviewing and documenting (in the historical, not "user manual" sense) the work that you did. Same with some of the other club resources such as Claude, Herb, Bob Kushnier, and several others.

          Well, that was completely my fault, not Evan's. He called to ask if I'd have something together for VCF but I was really focused on too many things and completely let the exhibit slip. It also happened around the start of the school year so I was busy with kid stuff.

          FWIW, one of the three founders and original President of Franklin, Joel Shusterman, said he'd be very interested in participating in something like this. He's a very funny guy with tons of drive and lots of good stories. Joel recently gave me a ton of early Franklin stuff, including framed photos of early products that used to hang in his office, early marketing give-aways, along with 7 or 8 boxes of software, the master copies of some of the documents associated with the Apple lawsuit (ie, the OFFICIAL ones given to Franklin), a Laser 128 personally given to him by the president of Laser, etc. I've got Franklin mugs, pen/pencil sets, screwdrivers, stationary, pins, buttons, faceplates, balloons, kites, posters, and more things than I can think of.

          My wife and kids complain about the piles of stuff in the basement.


          ___________________________________
          NOCC, http://nocc.sourceforge.net
        • jack99rubin
          Which is exactly why I urged you to do a Franklin Panel for VCF a few years ago! I probably should have just attached Evan to your ankle. You and Franklin
          Message 5 of 21 , Mar 8, 2010
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            Which is exactly why I urged you to do a "Franklin Panel" for VCF a few years ago! I probably should have just attached Evan to your ankle. You and Franklin are an integral part of the "revolution" and you/we should be interviewing and documenting (in the historical, not "user manual" sense) the work that you did. Same with some of the other club resources such as Claude, Herb, Bob Kushnier, and several others.

            Sheesh!

            Jack

            --- In midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com, Bob Applegate <bob@...> wrote:
            >
            > Since this is of personal interest to me, keep in mind that there is documentation and then there are the things that went on behind the scenes. Docs are important, but a lot of the docs have stuff that nobody notices until the "inside story" gets told, as was the case with the web page that started this whole discussion. I can probably find copies of the Franklin ACE-1000 documentation at a number of computer museums, but how many curators know what all the pictures mean? 100 years from now there will still be vintage computers sitting in collections along with the docs, but little of the history or inside stories. Believe me, a LOT of interesting things went on at the time that never got documented :)
            >
            > I remember one of the first episodes of Futurama when Fry and Leela go to the moon and watch a stage presentation about the early space program, none of which is told correctly. Is the same fate awaiting the early days of personal computers? Only Microsoft, IBM and Apple will have any legacy?
            >
            > Bob
            >
            <snip>
          • Christian Liendo
            http://8bitnyc.com/
            Message 6 of 21 , Mar 8, 2010
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              http://8bitnyc.com/

            • Bryan Pope
              ... Sounds interesting, but the website is down/real slow. But this seems like more history rewriting because it makes it look like 8-bit started with the
              Message 7 of 21 , Mar 8, 2010
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                On 3/8/2010 1:20 PM, Christian Liendo wrote:

                http://8bitnyc.com/


                Sounds interesting, but the website is down/real slow.  But this seems like more history rewriting because it makes it look like 8-bit started with the NES. :-(

                Cheers,

                Bryan

              • Dan Roganti
                Bryan Pope wrote: On 3/8/2010 1:20 PM, Christian Liendo wrote: http://8bitnyc.com/ Sounds interesting, but the website is down/real slow. But this seems like
                Message 8 of 21 , Mar 8, 2010
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                  Bryan Pope wrote:
                  On 3/8/2010 1:20 PM, Christian Liendo wrote:

                  http://8bitnyc.com/


                  Sounds interesting, but the website is down/real slow.  But this seems like more history rewriting because it makes it look like 8-bit started with the NES. :-(


                  slow on this end too

                  =Dan

                • Evan Koblentz
                  ... Sounds painful.
                  Message 9 of 21 , Mar 8, 2010
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                    > Which is exactly why I urged you to do a "Franklin Panel" for VCF a few years ago! I probably should have just attached Evan to your ankle.
                    >

                    Sounds painful.
                  • Evan Koblentz
                    ... Plenty of time to prepare all that before VCF East 7.0, sometime in May 2011 ...... or it could be part of a museum exhibit before then.
                    Message 10 of 21 , Mar 8, 2010
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                      > Well, that was completely my fault, not Evan's. He called to ask if I'd have something together for VCF but I was really focused on too many things and completely let the exhibit slip. It also happened around the start of the school year so I was busy with kid stuff.
                      >
                      > FWIW, one of the three founders and original President of Franklin, Joel Shusterman, said he'd be very interested in participating in something like this. He's a very funny guy with tons of drive and lots of good stories. Joel recently gave me a ton of early Franklin stuff, including framed photos of early products that used to hang in his office, early marketing give-aways, along with 7 or 8 boxes of software, the master copies of some of the documents associated with the Apple lawsuit (ie, the OFFICIAL ones given to Franklin), a Laser 128 personally given to him by the president of Laser, etc. I've got Franklin mugs, pen/pencil sets, screwdrivers, stationary, pins, buttons, faceplates, balloons, kites, posters, and more things than I can think of.

                      Plenty of time to prepare all that before VCF East 7.0, sometime in May
                      2011 ...... or it could be part of a museum exhibit before then.
                    • Dan Roganti
                      Dan Roganti wrote: Bryan Pope wrote: On 3/8/2010 1:20 PM, Christian Liendo wrote: http://8bitnyc.com/ Sounds interesting, but the website is down/real slow.
                      Message 11 of 21 , Mar 9, 2010
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                        Dan Roganti wrote:
                        Bryan Pope wrote:
                        On 3/8/2010 1:20 PM, Christian Liendo wrote:

                        http://8bitnyc.com/


                        Sounds interesting, but the website is down/real slow.  But this seems like more history rewriting because it makes it look like 8-bit started with the NES. :-(


                        slow on this end too


                        it's loading a lot faster this morning
                        looks great.

                        =Dan
                        http://www.vintagecomputer.net/ragooman/
                        

                      • Christian Liendo
                        OK.. So who is down to take off work and go to this? http://www.fanboy.com/2010/03/tron-legacy-the-full-trailer-shows-that-disney-has-a-winner.html#more-14245
                        Message 12 of 21 , Mar 9, 2010
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                          OK.. So who is down to take off work and go to this?

                          http://www.fanboy.com/2010/03/tron-legacy-the-full-trailer-shows-that-disney-has-a-winner.html#more-14245

                        • Dan Roganti
                          Christian Liendo wrote: OK.. So who is down to take off work and go to this?
                          Message 13 of 21 , Mar 9, 2010
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                            Christian Liendo wrote:
                            OK.. So who is down to take off work and go to this?

                            http://www.fanboy.com/2010/03/tron-legacy-the-full-trailer-shows-that-disney-has-a-winner.html#more-14245

                             

                            I think there will be a midnight showing as usual, which is always on the eve of the release, that's when I'm going. Don't forget there will be a IMAX 3D release too.

                            =Dan
                            http://www.vintagecomputer.net/ragooman/
                            


                          • Justin Jernigan
                            Looks pretty cool -- I tried to access it yesterday but didn t have any luck. Looks like he is on tap to do 15 more cities, 8 of which are designated already
                            Message 14 of 21 , Mar 9, 2010
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                              Looks pretty cool -- I tried to access it yesterday but didn't have any luck.

                              Looks like he is on tap to do 15 more cities, 8 of which are designated already and another 7 to be voted on. He set up a Kickstarter project and already has 100% funding. He hit nearly $2k of his $3k goal on Day One. That is awesome.

                              At the $30 donation level he will let you designate youself on a map, it would be cool if he was doing NJ and we could get MARCH/Infoage on the map.
                            • Jeffrey Brace
                              The trailer is cool ! Look forward to seeing it. I may even have to find an IMAX 3D in New Jersey (or even NYC) to go see it I love that Bruce Boxleitner (the
                              Message 15 of 21 , Mar 10, 2010
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                                The trailer is cool !  Look forward to seeing it. I may even have to find an IMAX 3D in New Jersey (or even NYC) to go see it Smiley emoticon
                                 
                                I love that Bruce Boxleitner (the original Tron) will be in it. Any idea if Peter Jurasik will be in it or any others from the original ? Of course we know about Jeff Bridges.
                                 
                                ---- Original Message -----
                                Sent: Tuesday, March 09, 2010 8:06 AM
                                Subject: [midatlanticretro] Full Tron Legacy Trailer

                                 
                              • Bob Schwier
                                Getting the first map was easy, getting the more granular maps was hard. Anyway, would you believe that the School District of Philadelphia, in its infinite
                                Message 16 of 21 , Mar 11, 2010
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                                  Getting the first map was easy, getting the more granular maps was hard.
                                  Anyway, would you believe that the School District of Philadelphia, in its
                                  infinite wisdom, had this as a banned site?
                                  bs

                                  --- On Tue, 3/9/10, Dan Roganti <ragooman@...> wrote:

                                  From: Dan Roganti <ragooman@...>
                                  Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] OT:What if google maps were done on a 8bit?
                                  To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com
                                  Date: Tuesday, March 9, 2010, 7:43 AM

                                   



                                  Dan Roganti wrote:

                                  Bryan Pope wrote:
                                  On 3/8/2010 1:20 PM, Christian Liendo wrote:

                                  http://8bitnyc. com/


                                  Sounds interesting, but the website is down/real slow.  But this seems like more history rewriting because it makes it look like 8-bit started with the NES. :-(


                                  slow on this end too


                                  it's loading a lot faster this morning
                                  looks great.

                                  =Dan
                                  http://www.vintagec omputer.net/ ragooman/


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