Collecting philosophy (Was: Computer collectors are no longer the
ard at p850ug1.demon.co.uk
Thu Aug 7 15:48:42 CDT 2008
> Tony Duell wrote:
> > Am I the only 'collector' who doesn't much care about the value of the
> > items hi his colelction? I collect things becuase I'm interested in
> > I find them beautiful (in a somewhat odd way, I can appreciate the
> > design in a PDP11 or HP98x0 CPU, for example). I don't collect in the
> > hope that I'll be able to sell them later for more money.
> No, Tony, at least there is someone else who has the same appreciation
> (not in terms of monetary value doing such), but in the glory of design
> and implementation. I don't care about the value of the calculators in
> the Old Calculator Museum. Frankly, I really could care less what they
> are worth. I do what I do because I have a great passion for this
> particular part of our technological history, and there is such a
> wonderful diversity of methods that various companies and engineers
> invented to do the same basic functions, and each has its own beauty and
> individuality, as well as (in some cases) places in history that are
> I state in the website that none of the stuff is for sale. It isn't.
> When I die, it'll be taken care of properly.
> That's all that matters to me. This stuff isn't an investment, except
> in the time that I spend pondering the designs and troubleshooting
> machines that there are no schematics for, or figuring out how to
> program a programmable calculator that there's no documentation known to
> exist in terms of its instruction set, as well as documenting what
> tidbits I can learn on the website for others to hopefully get some
> enjoyment and education from.
> Tinkering around with this stuff makes me happy. Digging through old
> documents and finding shreds of historical significance that tie
> together is the most wonderful kind of detective work. Communicating
> with folks who "were there", like Tom Osborn(HP 9100/9800), Allen
> Frankel (son of Stanley Frankel, developer of the SCM 240SR, and the
> design of the Diehl
> Combitron, and some early small computers, as well as being a nuclear
> physicist involved in the Manhattan Project), Harold Koplow (Microcode
> designer of Wang's 700-Series machines and others, including the 2200
> BASIC computer, and word-processing systems), and many others is such a
> great privilege. Sharing what I learn is pure joy.
> The value is in those things, not dollars. I agree completely with
> Tony's philosophy. Others may feel differently about these kinds of
> things, and that's their right, and I'll fight to the death to defend
> their right to feel that way, as well as for the right for Tony and
> myself think the way we do.
> Rick Bensene
> The Old Calculator Museum
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