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From: Different use of computer

Posted by Serguei2, 22 February 2018 · 81 views

What can you do on 1970s/1980s computers beside making and playing games?


Source: Different use of computer

Kind of a broad question.  There is a vast range of capabilities from 1970s punched tape and serial terminal computers to 1980s Amigas and PCs.


Any old computer from that era allows for exploration and learning how computers really work and process information.   They can help develop an appreciation for efficiency lacking in modern languages and development environments.


The early/smaller computers are practical for fewer things.   Later computers are more practical.


Light text editing is possible on most.   Internet use is possible for the smaller, earlier systems, but honestly impractical for regular use.  More of an "I can do it!" achievement.


I have linux on modern laptops  for daily use.   But, I still have Amigas that work fine.  CygnusEd is a great text editor.   When I need to deal with real pixels in a small color palette the paint programs on the Amiga are better than modern 32-bit color, painting-with-blurred-brushes tools.   Imagine is a better, easier, 3D modeler for me than a lot of modern, highly complicated programs. 


And, there's nothing wrong with programming and playing games on the old systems.   In some ways this is new -- Atari was pretty stingy with development information for the Atari 8-bit computers back in the day.  Now that everything is known about them down to the last transistor its possible to push them to do things that were never thought possible.

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