Category Archives: Old Man Stories

Put it on Paper First

When I first wrote software, I didn’t get to use an editor. You didn’t write software on a screen with a keyboard, you wrote it with pencil on graph paper. This meant that you had to “play computer” to check … Continue reading

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The Control-G Bomb

In the late 80’s, I once worked in an environment where people had to read their company email once per shift on community VT terminals (and emulators) in the middle of the production floor. In the VT100 character set, the … Continue reading

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Old Days Photos – 8″ Floppy Drive

= Boat Anchor 8-inch floppy drive somebody gave me. This thing is a TANK. It’s not worth anything on eBay, so I’m going to build a PC into the case someday. You can STAND on this puppy.  Thick sheet metal … Continue reading

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Old Days Photos – FORTRAN IV Textbook

From my FORTRAN textbook. Hard-coded line numbers!  Handy for all those GOTO’s we used. Form for laying out your forms. Never seen one of these, but still occasionally use graph paper for layouts. Flowcharts were standard operating procedure.  Like a … Continue reading

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The Old Days Factoid #1 – N0 ZER0

Most people don’t realize this, but we programmers didn’t always put a diagonal line through our zeros. In my Fortran IV textbook, coding specifications mentioned that on some systems the letter ‘O’ had a diagonal line through it. The ZERO … Continue reading

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Old Man Story – der Uno

“hey, can I see how you did your program?” Continue reading

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