Thursday, February 20, 2014

JMA author turning 53 tomorrow

In my childhood, computers could be seen only in some MODERN science-fiction movies, and they were huge cabinets with magnetic tapes spinning...

in those times, knowing how to use a ruler was a must for an engineer, and I duly learned as a child to extract logarithms and cotangents with this mechanical device.... quite accurate, to be honest...

My father, an engineer, brought home some hand-held calculators, with a fluorescent display eating all battery in half an hour...they were fascinating, but they could only to the 4 operations...

The first time I met someone who actually had a computer at home (a VIC 20, with a prodigious 1 KB RAM!) I was 21... in 1982...when he described me what a computer can do, it sounded like magic to me.

And the first time I have actually used a computer (a PDP 11), in 1983,

it had PUNCHED CARDS!!! Having a teletype (with actual paper) was a luxury... not to mention having a CRT!!!

But if you ask me "is today world, full of technology, better than the one where you were born?" I would asnwer without hesitation: "NO! We had children playing in the street, lot of social gatherings, families were far more united, life a lot more natural and fun... less cars, more nature"

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