Monday, December 13, 2010

Rymdreglage - 8-Bit Trip

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Intel Past and Present: 25 Facts You Might Not Know

eWeek reports: "Intel remains synonymous in many peoples' minds with terms such as 'microprocessor' and 'innovation.' Its constant barrage of television ads, often capped with that distinctive 'dum-da-DUM' jingle, has made it one of the few technology companies that your average American can actually name. Over its several decades of existence, Intel has developed the computational architecture underlying everything from arcade games and industrial electronics to the PC sitting on your desk. Although many people know the terms 'Pentium' and 'Intel Inside,' they may not realize that the company's innovations extend beyond powering laptops and desktops. In recent years, Intel's researchers have focused on everything from the ultra-wired home and more efficient cloud computing to robot butlers. The tablet PC and mobile markets are also firmly in the company's sights, as it seeks to leverage recent trends in those areas. The following slides detail 25 things about Intel's history and current workings: from the historic to the totally obscure."

Monday, November 22, 2010

Visual tour: 25 years of Windows

ComputerWorld Reports: "Twenty-five years ago, on Nov. 20, 1985, Microsoft introduced its first version of Windows to the world. Not many people outside the technical press or the tech industry took notice. Product launch events that cost hundreds of millions of dollars were still years away.

What's changed in Windows in the last 25 years? Plenty. In this image gallery, we take a look at the various faces of Windows over the past couple of decades and clue you in to what happened at every stage of the operating system's development."

Friday, November 12, 2010

Apple computer for sale: only $160K! reports: "An auctioneer is selling its distant ancestor and one of the world's first personal computers -- the Apple-1 -- for an estimated $161,600 to $242,400.

In 1976, Apple co-founders Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak built the computer out of Jobs' family garage and sold it for $666.66.

The Apple-1 will be auctioned by Christie's in London, England, on November 23, with a simultaneous auction held online."

Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Story of the Ribbon (aka the Death of Clippy

MIX Videos: "Farewell, menus and toolbars! Come hear the behind-the-scenes story of how the 2007 Office Ribbon user interface was imagined, designed, and validated. See never-before-shown early prototypes, hear about mistakes we learned from during the design process, and find out the principles of user experience design we used each step of the way in creating the first totally new user interface for Office."

Monday, October 11, 2010

eBay - Atmark Pippin

eBay Auction, selling "a used ATMARK APPLE PIPPIN [the Japanese version] with the box and with the following : 2 games = GUNDAM TACTICS FLEET 0079 and PEASE both games in cases w/ instructions. 1 PIPPIN CD-ROM = DISC 4 VOL. 1. All the cords and cables are included. The 33600 bps modem is included. 1 controller is included."

Final price: $200.25. More information on this device

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Xerox PARC Research Center Looks Back on 40 Years of Invention

eWeek reports: "The Palo Alto Research Center started out on Sept. 23, 1970, as Xerox PARC, the R&D arm of Xerox. The idea was not to build a better document copier but to get into the overall 'business of breakthroughs,' as the institution describes itself. In 2002, PARC was incorporated as a wholly owned yet independent subsidiary company of Xerox. Currently, PARC has an impressive list of customers, with about 40 percent of its business from Xerox and 30 percent from government contracts. Its 2009 revenue was about $60 million. Many familiar inventions were dreamed up at PARC, including the graphical user interface for computers, laser printing, computer programming languages, Ethernet networking and VLSI (very large-scale integration) circuit design. The following slide show highlights some of those innovations."


eBay: "Here's an Early Minivac 601 Computer. Its made by Scientific Development Corporation, Watertown, Mass. It comes with Original Box, Instruction Manuals, Maintenance Manual and Many Red, Yellow, and Blue Jumper Wires. It looks used very little, Excellent condition. Manuals are copyright 1961, computer is marked Patent Applied For. Computer measures approx. 13 x 24' and about 6' high. I plugged it in, power light comes on, looks like it'll work."

-> See the auction
-> Read more information about it.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Evolution of Mobile Phones (1985 - 2007)

It's a great video timeline of popular phones from 1985 (starting with the Motorola DynaTAC) to 2007 (ending with the Apple iPhone).

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Epic failures: 11 infamous software bugs - Computerworld

Computerworld reports: "It all began with a log entry from 1947 by Harvard University's Mark II technical team. The now-classic entry features a moth taped to the page, time-stamped 15:45, with the caption 'Relay #70 Panel F (moth) in relay' and the proud boast, 'First actual case of bug being found.'"

It's a really good article, and provides more information then I have seen anyone write on the subject. It's technical, but worth reading.

Monday, June 21, 2010

The History of the Thinkpad 700T (Tablet)

Howard Dulany walks us through the genesis of the original ThinkPad tablet, the ThinkPad 700T.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

1964 Antique MODEM Live Demo

From the Author: "This modem was given to me ~1989 by the widow of a retired (IBM?) engineer. has a Model B dated 1965, and I've seen a ~1967 Model C written up in a magazine. (Interestingly, incorrectly identified as being only 110 baud.)

Even better than seeing it in a museum, I decide to hook the trusty Model A up and make it talk to something. After some trial and error, I manage to get it to talk to a terminal server at work and use it to connect to a linux box. It's ALIVE! So, 45 years after it's creation, this antique modem gets to send data to and from the modern Internet.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Hot Video Arcade Games Of 1982

July 14, 1982, KTHI-TV, Fargo, ND - How far videos games had come from Pong to the hits of 1982! Do you remember playing Robotron, Stargate, Wizard Of Wor, Zaxon, Pacman, Amadar, Frogger, Solar Quest, Omega Race, Galaxan, Defender? An overview of the hot games at the time and the common themes and rules among them all. In 1982, they all seemed so advanced, so sophisticated. Looking back from the 21st century, they all now seem ... quaint. Transferred from 3/4 inch videotape via ADVC 300 and into iMovie HD. From Keith Darnay's personal video collection.

eBay: MOS KIM-1

From Wikipedia: "The KIM-1, short for Keyboard Input Monitor, was a small 6502-based microcomputer kit developed and produced by MOS Technology, Inc. and launched in 1975. It was very successful in terms of that period, due to its low price (following from the inexpensive 6502) and easy-access expandability."

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Ford Model T - 100 Years Later

I generally cover digital technology, but today I found an interesting video about the production of the original Ford Model T. When you think about it, modern cars are nothing but computers on wheels. For more information about the Model T, check out this wikipedia article.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

eBay: Sony Aibo Robot Dog

I remember wanting one of these Sony Aibo robot dogs but was not willing to spend the money on them. I found one recently on eBay, and they're now worth as much as they were when they were new. The except from the eBay auction:
"In 1999, Sony produced the first commercially available fully autonomous entertainment robot, knows as Aibo, model ERS-110, with an original production for the U.S. of 2,000 robots. We were on the waiting list for one of these robots, and were lucky enough to get one. The original price tag, with tax and shipping, was just shy of $3,000, but we considered it a rare opportunity to acquire an item that would be highly collectible and sought after.

We've had our Aibo, named Robi One Kenobi, for ten years now, but have found that he spends way too much time in his box. In fact, he spends about 51 out of 52 weeks each year in his box. Since the Aibo's start out like puppies, and "learn" as they do things, and since we don't have time to work with him, we've decided it's time to sell him and let someone else play with him."

eBay: Kenbak - 1 computer -- RARE VINTAGE PC

Want to see a very rare vintage computer, checkout this Kenbak-1 computer that was recently sold on eBay. Here is some information from the eBay auction:
"The world's first personal computer: the Kenbak-1 Computer, Serial Number 183 from the original production run, Restored by and sold personally by John V. Blankenbaker, the creator and designer of the Kenbak-1

The Kenbak-1 computer, built in 1971, is considered by many computer historians to represent the world's first personal computer. This Kenbak-1 computer, serial number 183, has been in the possession of its creator John V. Blankenbaker since 1971, and has been recently restored by him to be fully operational. Kenbak-1 computers are scarce and considered to be highly collectible. On rare occasions when one has been offered for sale, they have sold for between $10,000 and $15,000."
The final auction price on this piece of equipment was: $25,600.00.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

IBM 5100 Portable Computer Commercial (1977)

From Wikipedia: "The IBM 5100 is based on a 16-bit processor module called PALM (Put All Logic in Microcode). The IBM 5100 Maintenance Information Manual also referred to the PALM module as the controller. PALM can directly address 64 KB of memory. Some configurations of the IBM 5100 had Executable ROS (ROM) and RAM memory totaling more than 64 KB, so a simple bank switching scheme was used. The actual APL and/or BASIC interpreters were stored in a separate Language ROS address space which the PALM treats as a peripheral device."

Saturday, April 10, 2010

The iPad was Invented 38 years ago

ConceivablyTech reports: "Giving Apple credit for reshaping the way we use computers, well at least attempting it, would be a bit too much. Apple simply built a device that was imagined and described in detail in a research paper 38 years ago. Reading that paper is a spooky experience – it is fascinating how closely the author describes what the iPad is today. He even got the price right – almost four decades ago."

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Sunday, January 24, 2010


Here is another very, very, rare item. Its an Apple Lisa 1, with two 5 1/4" (twiggy) drives. What makes the system rare are the two twiggy drives (which were slow and unreliable, Apple later replace them with 3.5 drives).

The asking price for the system is $12,000, which I hate to say is the going price. The spare parts for this system are expensive too, for example the mouse on this system generally sells for about $100 all by itself.

APPLE LISA 1 COMPUTER -RESTORED & WORKING! -BEYOND RARE - eBay (item 260539569343 end time Jan-17-10 22:00:05 PST)

eBay: Original Apple 1 computer for sale (only $50,000)

I accidently came across this piece of history. Although, you missed your chance to buy this item, the auction information is still up on eBay.

Original Apple 1 computer for sale - eBay (item 320451173813 end time Nov-22-09 05:57:16 PST)

Just in case eBay takes the auction down, here is a PDF that someone posted of the item.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Interesting Vintage Technology You Never Heard Of...

The Besler Steam Plane

A Travel Air 2000 biplane made the world's first piloted flight under steam power over Oakland, California, on 12 April 1933.

The strangest feature of the flight was its relative silence; spectators on the ground could hear the pilot when he called to them from mid-air.
The aircraft, piloted by William Besler, had been fitted with a two-cylinder, 150 hp reciprocating engine.

Armstead Snow Motors

This is a 16mm demo film of the Armstead Snow Motors Company concept snow vehicle. It was filmed in 1924. The concept is applied to a Fordson tractor and a Chevrolet automobile. The original film is part of the collections of the Archives of Michigan.

Monday, January 11, 2010

1939 Novachord

The following excerpt is from email that was sent me to me a by a reader, I thought I would include it because this definitely meets the classification of vintage technology (i.e.: 1939):

"I have spent the last 3 months restoring an extremely rare example of the world's first commercial polyphonic music synthesizer, a 1939 Novachord. This beast was built in 1939, weighs 1/4 ton and has 163 electronic tubes (valves). 1069 were made between 1939 and 1941. This is now one of less than 30 or so playable examples world wide and is very likely to be the only one in the UK. The Novachord was probably one of the spookiest sounding synths ever made and can sound really creepy at times - it found it's way into countless early scifi and horror films.

The Novachord cost $1800 in 1939 - ie. as much as a house!!

Your readers may be interested in this monster as very few, even including professional electronic musicians, have any idea that polyphonic synths go back this far!

Here is an HQ recording of some sounds I recorded from the beast: (A very rare opportunity indeed!)

My restoration blog is here:


Dan Wilson
Hideaway Studio, UK. "
If you have some vintage technology that you would like me to highlight in this blog, please feel free to email me (ubergeek316 {at} gmail {dot} com).