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Disappointments in Classic Computing -- (Your stories here)

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#76 JamesD OFFLINE  



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Posted Thu Aug 21, 2014 5:43 PM

My biggest dissapointment in computing was the Aquarius,I have already posted in this thread saying the same thing but-it was so dissapointing it deserves to be mentioned twice. ;-)

Just think how Mattel felt

#77 Nebulon OFFLINE  



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Posted Fri Aug 22, 2014 11:32 AM



The Amiga signified inefficiency and seemed to be ushering in the era of bloatware. The Apple just used it's storage resources so much better. From power on to playing a game could happen in as little as 10 seconds if the disk had a fast loader. It took a million times longer for the Amiga to drag its ass up through the Kickstart screen and then load god knows how much shit before you could even begin to load your program - which sometimes required swapping disks 2x or 3x times.


Regarding the operating system, everything that was on disk should have been included in ROM somehow. The Amiga tried to do too much at the cost of making doing what it did so much less efficient.


Everything was just a waiting experience. About as exciting as watching a .Zip archive do its thing. And if progress bars ever needed advertising and glorification, the Amiga would be the poster child.


Well I tried Defender through Win UAE 2.8.1 and couldn't get it going, all it did was give me vertical bars. I tried enough options till I got sick and tired of the damned thing. I got the Defender II image working, it was dumb, and stupid. Sloppy programming indeed.


I'm not sure you're trying the version of Defender that I'm thinking of. The one I had in mind is located here:



Your comment about 'power-on to playing a game in 10 seconds' tells me that you haven't even tried loading Blood Money on a real A500 yet. The time it takes from power-on to significant stuff happening on screen is pretty astounding. Seriously... take a look at it. And consider how much more data is being loaded and processed than in an Apple II game. Or consider that the music and animation is happening while the game data is loading.


The time taken for the Kickstart screen on the Amiga is not wasted time. It's doing a series of diagnostics on boot-up. You use PCs and I don't see you complaining about the wait time for the BIOS to finish its job.


Putting everything in ROM would make things faster. However, you'd also be forcing the end-user to have to upgrade ROMs for even minor OS upgrades. Fixing bugs in the OS would also have to involve ROM upgrades. More costly than a simple re-issue on diskette and more difficult for the user. I think you can see why that wouldn't be implemented.


Then there's the comment about inefficiency. The Amiga saves data on disk as one byte of data for one byte of disk space. It doesn't suffer from the cluster size issues of FAT and NTFS. 1-byte data for 1-byte on disk is about as efficient as it gets.  Of course, the trade-off is speed for large drives. And on the topic of speed...


...some real numbers as a point of comparison:


You mention a LockSmith Fast Copy disk copy procedure on the Apple II as 30 seconds. That's 30 seconds for 140K of disk space.


Now over to the Amiga running the Nib 2.0 disk copier. The copy procedure takes 2 minutes and 3 seconds (and there are faster Amiga copiers out there).

That's 880K in about 2 minutes and 2 seconds or 220K in 31 seconds.


Again, I think your perception of things might be skewing your take on the Amiga's real-world performance.

#78 Keatah OFFLINE  


    Missile Commander

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Posted Fri Aug 22, 2014 4:14 PM

Again maybe so. I just tried BM out on emulation and it did seem to bypass a lot of the bs and get right down to it. Too bad the many other experiences I had weren't as "efficient". It's a cute game, the little orange helicopter and all.


With PCs I've long learned to throw away about 30% of the performance and storage to nonsense or just plain inefficiencies. I can understand that happening because thousands upon thousands of people have their hand in the pot. But with the Amiga I expected better from a small design team

#79 bobotech OFFLINE  



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Posted Sun Aug 24, 2014 2:03 AM

I think that the biggest disappointment that i remember in classic computing days was the TRS-80's lack of high res graphics.  And also maybe Apple's super weird way of handling screen memory.  My mind is fuzzy about this because that is going back 30+ years ago but I remember that Apples had a weird way with screen memory.  Like a section of memory would write to the top 1/8th of the screen, then the next section of memory would write to the 3rd 1/8 section, and then next section would write to the 6th 1/8 section and so on until it started doing the 2nd section.  it wasn't like the Atari which its continuous screen memory which made scrolling a snap.  I didn't own either system, I just remember being disappointed that each one had their respective limitations.  Also i was always disappointed that i didn't get an Ohio Scientific Challenger 4P.  I remember thinking that screen resolution was king and that the 4P had higher resolution than other computers so i wanted one.  Screen resolution was one of the reasons why I was drawn to the Atari computers, 320x192 was higher than other computes including the Apple 2.  

#80 Nebulon OFFLINE  



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Posted Mon Aug 25, 2014 1:31 PM

I was disappointed that the Atari 520ST came with a single-sided drive. Too many software houses released their stuff on single-sided disks because of that. Pretty unfair for the 1040ST owners. An unfortunate side-effect of the 'lowest common denominator'.   Of course, we still see this support the lowest standard type of thing happening today  :(


The second thing that irked me was initially reading that the Coleco Adam would have disk drives, only to find out that they decided to go with tape drives instead. Even though they were random-access tape, that was still a disappointment.

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