Is feeling the pain of having to save and load data for my TI99/4A and tandy PC4 pocket computer on cassette. I imagine it will be a lot like toggling in bootstrap code to an Altair 8800: do it a couple times and you're gonna throw a rom in there....
BuckB writes: When I was a young man, I read Slashdot in order to amaze my friends with useful facts. It was even my homepage for awhile. Sure, there was time when I cheated and went to cnet or wired. With Slashdot, I could count on high quality debate on controversial topics, even though I knew in my heart that most of the readers were Apple fans, while I am a closeted Microsofterian. Now the stories are mainly non-tech — no, that's the real reason — the stories are now mainly fake or click-bait or alarmist, and the discussions are completely uninformed, insulting, to the point of being indistinguishable from an MSNBC forum.
I'll still remember you fondly. And I'll check back now and then. You'll do fine without me, find more people who enjoy insulting contributions and upvoting rumors and gossip. But maybe, just maybe, you'll think back to when you were a leader and attracted the kinds of people like me.
teacher. The actual computer teacher in 4th grade told me to just play quietly with the computer and don't break it after he challenged me for not paying attention and noticed I'd already programmed a brick out game....
theodp writes: "In 5th grade," Syambra Moitozo fondly recalls in Steve Wozniak Was My Computer Teacher in 1995, "we’d stay after school so my friend Sara’s dad could teach us about computers. Sara's dad happens to be Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple." By Moitozo's account, Woz was one cool teacher. Not only did he purchase Macintosh PowerBook laptops for the kids (those who mastered the concepts got to keep theirs), get them online with AOL accounts, and equip them with gadgets like laser pens, Woz would even occasionally treat the kids to McDonald’s Happy Meals, which Moitozo notes felt rebelliously exciting for kids who were regularly force-fed granola by their health conscious parents. "It was less important to me what you teach, and more important to motivate people by making things as fun as you can," Wozniak told Moitozo when she reconnected with him nearly 22 years later. “I had that liberty because I was sponsoring the class myself and wasn’t under the guidance of a principal. My intent was not to train people to become computer specialists or work for computer companies. We don’t need everyone in life to be computer experts." Of the 30 kids in her class, Moitozo notes that at least eight went into careers in technology, including a vision-impaired student (who now works at Apple) for whom Woz installed a huge screen at her home so she could see the lessons better.
mcpublic writes: Today marks the 45th anniversary of the 4004, Intel’s first microprocessor chip, announced to the world in the November 15, 1971 issue of Electronic News. It seems that everyone (except Intel) loves to argue whether it was truly the “first microprocessor.” Ken Sherriff's recent article in IEEE Spectrum tells the more complicated story. But what’s indisputable is that the 4004 was the computer chip that started Intel’s pivot from a tiny semiconductor memory company to the personal computing giant we know today. Federico Faggin, an Italian immigrant who invented the self-aligned, silicon gate MOS transistor and buried contacts technology, joined Intel in 1970. He needed both his inventions to squeeze the 4004's roughly 2,300 transistors into a single 3x4mm silicon die. He later went on to design the Intel 8080 and the Zilog Z80 with Masatoshi Shima, a Japanese engineer with a “steel trap mind,” the once-unsung hero of the 4004 team.
SonicSpike writes: In September, a three-judge panel of the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals denied a motion to enjoin the State Department from censoring the American organization Defense Distributed. The Department back in 2013 threatened them with prosecution for hosting computer files that instruct 3D printers to make a plastic pistol, one the company calls "The Liberator." Defense Distributed have since then complied with the department's demand.
Provocateur and author Cody Wilson, who runs the organization and built and fired the first 3D-printed plastic pistol, believes that State Department threats to treat hosting such files as the equivalent of exporting illegal munitions amount to a prior restraint violation of their First and Second Amendment rights. (The Second Amendment Foundation is also a plaintiff in the suit.)
Defense Distributed's legal team, including Alan Gura (who has won two substantial victories for the Second Amendment at the Supreme Court), filed on Friday a petition to the Fifth Circuit for an en banc rehearing (before the entire Court, not just a three-judge panel) of the injunction request.
The new filing's arguments, quoted and summarized:
"Never before has a federal appellate court declined to enjoin a content-based prior restraint on speech while refusing to consider the merits of a First Amendment challenge...The panel majority's novel decision contradicts a long line of established Supreme Court and circuit precedents governing constitutional claims and injunctive relief—including decisions of this and all other regional federal circuit courts of appeal."
dcblogs writes: IT workers in the infrastructure team at Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC) were notified recently of their layoff. They expect to be training replacements from India-based contractor HCL. The layoff affects more than 500 IT workers. But this familiar IT story begins a little differently. A few days before employees were notified in mid-October of their layoff, HCSC CEO Paula Steiner talked about future goals in an internal, company-wide video. Steiner's comments weren't IT-department-specific, but the takeaway quote by one IT employee was this: "As full-time retiring baby boomers move on to their next chapter, the makeup of our organization will consist more of young and non-traditional workers, such as part-time workers or contractors," said Steiner in the video. What Steiner didn't say in the employee broadcast is that some of the baby boomers moving "on to the next chapter" are being pushed out the door. "Obviously not all of us are 'retiring' — a bunch of us are being thrown under the bus," said one older employee.