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David Corking

Gizmodo - Computing Classic: The 1954 SAGE Protected the US From Invasions That Never C... - 0 views

  • many of the fighters carried nuclear tipped air-to-air missiles, so it would have been a bit of a turkey shoot. Until, that is, all of the EMP from the exploding missiles and bombs rendered SAGE unusable.
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    The design, build, and coding for this 1954 vacuum tube computer system is an utterly remarkable feat.
David Corking

The dumbing down of technology | Tony Lawrence | 2008 - 0 views

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    I love this article. Lawrence is 60 and can perhaps afford to be sanguine, but I am glad he is warning the rest of us.
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    Some quotable quotes here: "while we laugh at the guy who expected that his computer could be hooked up to his boom box to use the cd, he's actually just a bit ahead of us. Yes, ahead, not behind. In the future, he probably could get his computer to talk the boom box into transferring data from its cd." "When I was a teenager, I had a friend who made extra money testing and changing vacuum tubes in TV's and radios. Try earning money that way today- there is actually a very small market for that kind of thing, and there are still people who sell tubes and the like, but that market is pretty small. In the dumbed down computers of the future, there may still be a few antique machines kicking around here and there, but that isn't going to support very many of us." This is largely true and happening all the time. A programmer can use Python or Smalltalk without needing to know C (or Fortran or assembler.) A child can program in Morphic tiles (Etoys and Scratch)! We don't need to know the difference between a serial cable and a printer cable, or how to install a driver' it is all USB (or Bluetooth!) There are some gurus that program USB, but perhaps only a few hundred of them, and the rest of us just use it.
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