TRS-80 Model 1 (was: Arty computers (was: Re: PDP-11/70 inYates

Jules Richardson julesrichardsonuk at
Sun Feb 4 10:28:06 CST 2007

Tony Duell wrote:
>> On 2 Feb 2007 at 23:54, arcarlini at wrote:
>>> A few days ago I read a claim that floppies are used infrequently
>>> these days (compared to how often they used to be used) so the
>>> dust and grime that gets sucked through a drive has longer to
>>> accumulate before being deposited onto the occasional floppy
>>> that does make it in there (for a BIOS upgrade or whatever).
> Incidentally, I heard a news item a few days ago that 'PC World' (a chain 
> of computer shops in the UK) will no longer be selling floppy disks once 
> their current stocks run out.

You know, I saw that story too and the numbers are interesting - 2 billion 
floppies sold worldwide in 1998 versus 700 million in 2006. It then goes on to 
say that demand has fallen by two thirds, which at least gives us an idea of 
whose concept of billion they're using :-)

But the point is, a 2/3 drop in demand over 8 years seems like not that much 
at all for something that we're constantly told is useless / ancient / 
obsolete / no longer needed! Evidently there are still (thankfully) plenty of 
people out there who think that the floppy still does a useful job.

>> My drives get used a lot--and are scrupulously maintained.  Modern 
>> 3.5" DSHD media is garbage.  I have far better luck with DS2D 3.5".
> My expeirences exactly. 

<aol>me too</aol>

I don't quite understand why modern floppy media is so bad; I mean you'd think 
the manufacturing procedures are the same as they always were, and I find it 
hard to believe it's just a quality control issue - I mean, surely there 
wasn't such a high percentage of rejected bad media back in the day (which is 
now slipping through to market due to bad QC). Conspiracy? ;)

> It may, of course, be the age-old marketroid trick. We need to sell USB 
> sticks/whatever the replacement is, so we'll make sure the old solution 
> (floppy drives) stops working reliably (by selling crap medai), then 
> people will have to upgrade.

Heh heh, see above... are any of the big names in USB widgets the same people 
who traditionally made floppy drives / media though?

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