Hardware Hobbyists vs. Emulator Jockeys
ragooman at comcast.net
Thu Jun 18 22:23:56 CDT 2009
Jim Brain wrote:
> I can't argue the value of experiencing the actual vintage hardware
> I worry about taking an "elitist" position when it comes to vintage
> hardware, though.
Please don't use the term 'elistist' so loosely. It oftens gets confused
with hobbyists who like to be 'purists'. It affects other hobbies
besides this one. Also, elitists don't get their hands 'dirty' [they
tend to be stodgy and never touch hardware], purists always do.
> For every person who wants to experience the slow speed of the 1541,
> there are 10-100 people who find the C64 valuable but have no time for
> the 1541. Specifically, the latter group includes the folks design SW
> for the platform, software that users (who might enjoy the 1541) use.
> So, by withholding newer technologies, it effectively discourages
> those that the community wishes to interest in the platform.
> As well, the C64 never offered Ethernet, and the "use only
> era-appropriate technologies" mentality would preclude such a technology.
Ethernet has been around, technically, since 1973, and the 802 spec
hardware was available around '82 -- so anyone with an Altair or PDP-11
could even have fun with this :) I like the C64 ethernet just for
this reason, they made the effort to combine the two when it wasn't
previously available [mostly due to costs back then] Although they use a
relatively newer chip,CS8900, I'm open to that kind of hacking.
> However, the CBM 8-bit line has enjoyed quite a bit of publicity over
> innovative Ethernet software solutions (like the recently noted
> Twitter client). Such publicity generates lots of value (additional
> new users, developers who turn to the platform for the community
> aspects of the challenge of such development, etc.) for the platform.
I think new uses like this Twitter app is always a good thing for this
hobby - I would call it recycling hardware into retro applications
> Maybe the recent vintage machines (like the home computer of the 80s)
> are unique in that they still have a relatively large user community
> and are being utilized in contemporary settings due to unique aspects
> that have never been duplicated (The SID IC, for example) In fact,
> the term "restoration" is seldom heard in the CBM community (it's
> usually reserved for some extremely rare variant of the line, like an
> early PET or some unreleased machine), but "use" is often heard.
I guess because there's still alot more working vs. broken machines from
this category still, hence the lack of restoration involved -- but I
still have a boxful of 1541's to rebuild between those in our group here :)
> Quite possibly, I'm the odd man out in this community. I am
> interested in preserving the CBM 8 bit line, but that's not the end of
> my interest. I do agree that my position begs the question "At what
> point have you 'enhanced' a machine beyond recognition?" I don't have
> an answer for that question, but I have some ideas.
I do have an interest in using some of the enhanced hardware sometimes,
but mostly when it assists me in this hobby, such as archiving lots of
[ = http://www2.applegate.org/~ragooman/ ]
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