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RE: [OT] Remember when hard disk sizes were in MiB?

On Tue, 2002-12-17 at 13:42, Narins, Josh wrote:
> Yeah, I remember when we just had rocks and sticks.

Don't be snide, you young whippersnapper!  I'm not even 40...  A former 
boss of mine worked on the IBM 1403, which had hard disks, but only the
most minimal OS.  Thus, one had to remember which cylinder/sector that
your file started on.

> We didn't have words for concepts, concepts like "register overflow" or
> "seven"
> A rock counted as five, a stick meant one, and that's what you had. 
> Unless Og was counting, who counted rocks as threes.
> We said to Og, "Hey, do whatever you want, personal standards are cool" and
> then whispered, under our breaths ", freak."
> We heard later that Og went off and invented fire.
> But his old gang
>     his old gang and I
>                        we all
>                        we all think he bought it
>                        we all think he bought it, hot.
> -hsoj sniran
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Ron Johnson [mailto:ron.l.johnson@cox.net]
> Sent: Wednesday, December 11, 2002 12:42 AM
> To: Debian-User
> Subject: Re: [OT] Remember when hard disk sizes were in MiB?
> Being an old fogey myself (no matter how many "daily snapshots" of the code,
> and how many 10s of thousands of test records I kept in data files, I just
> couldn't come near filling up a 40MB HDD), I *totally* understand your
> point.  However...
> Just today, I received 3 512MB SDRAMS for the grand sum of US$94. That's
> 24,576x more RAM that was in my KayPro2, and 2,458x as much RAM as in my
> first PC/AT. Likewise, the 120GB drives that go for US$125 is 154,194x as
> much capacity as the 2 380KB (yes, 380KB, not 360KB) in said KayPro2.
> In 1992, I bought a 250MB HDD, which is 1/480th the size of the 
> 120GB HDD.  (It's 1/1280th the size of the new 320GB Maxtors...)
> So..... So what if programs are biggers now than they were back then? They
> do a *heck* of a lot more!!!!
> No!  I am NOT defending/condoning poor programmers and poor programming! You
> being an ex-VAX programmer will understand that VMS 7.3 has a lot more
> capabilities/functionality than VMS 1.0, and thus STARLET.OLB is bigger now
> than it was 25 years ago.  And more genericly, compiler writers now optimize
> more for speed rather than code size.  IMHO, it's a valid trade-off.
> Of couse, now that programmers don't have the pressing need to write really
> tight code, they've forgotten how.  Many under 35 years of age (unless they
> were C64 assembler geeks) have never learned how. And object orientation
> hasn't helped one bit...
> On Tue, 2002-12-10 at 22:18, Mark L. Kahnt wrote:
> > I was digging through some old papers and found this from nearly a 
> > decade ago:
> > 
> > (Dec. 21)
> >  I'm getting tired of lazy, slovenly, good-for-nothing programmers 
> > wasting my hard-earned hard disk space with their frivolous code.  My 
> > first PC hard disk had a 10MB capacity. These days, I can think of 
> > individual applications that consume more space.  It has to stop. Stop 
> > the insanity! It's getting to the point where I'm being forced to swap 
> > hard disks as often as I change my socks -- about once a year. 
> > Programmers and their corporate sponsors have to be taught to become 
> > thrifty with *our* hard disk space by writing compact programs.
> >  Here's my plan. For every megabyte of hard disk space a software
> > product consumes, the publisher must rebate the customer $10. So if a
> > program takes up 1MB we get $10 back. For 2MB we get $20 back and so on
> > and so on. Buy Windows and you could get enough back for the down
> > payment on a small ranch home in Levittown.
> >  Let me tell you friends, with such a plan in force we'll see smaller
> > and more efficient programs hit the market in a hurry. It'll be like the
> > good old days when programs came on single floppy disks or, better yet,
> > audio cassettes.
> >  What I'm a little hazy on at the moment is how to enforce this policy.
> > Maybe I'll send a few of my Brooklyn buddies to the executive suites of
> > some major software publishers with a subtle message, like a fish
> > wrapped in a newspaper, or a horse's head or a photograph of Pat
> > Robertson.
> >  And how will you spend your rebate? Oh, have fun! Paint the town red,
> > courtesy of...
> >  --John Edwards
> > 
> > ======================================================================
> > Mark again --
> > 
> > The first hard drive I worked with on a desktop was 5 MiB, connected 
> > to a VAX 11/750 with a 100 MiB hard drive in the system room, back 
> > when they were the size of dishwashers. Then I lucked out and got a 
> > machine with 20 MiB on the desktop (powered by a PDP/11 processor.) 16 
> > people worked on that VAX, developing compilers (4) and interpreters 
> > (5) for a number of different platforms (5), with multiple versions of 
> > the source code on the system in the days before RCS and CVS. I worked 
> > at squeezing the Pascal compiler onto one 180 KiB floppy (that's how 
> > big they were back then, before the second side of the disk also 
> > became available.
> > 
> > I also remember that to do pretty well anything, you needed to program 
> > it - User Friendly meant that error messages were included, rather 
> > than just going off wildly and trashing the entire system ;) There is 
> > justification for larger code than we used to use because programs are 
> > doing vastly more than I did in the early 1980s when writing 
> > interpreters and compilers at Watcom. Graphics were only just being 
> > introduced to computers, and code was 8 or 16 bit on most platforms 
> > (except for the 32-bit VAX and the 36-bit IBM) and back then, we could 
> > save all sorts of memory by only saving the last two digits of the 
> > year
> > ;)
> > 
> > I look on program bloat as something comparable to governments and
> > taxes: the more services you want provided, the more taxes or disk 
> > space (depending on the metaphor) are needed to do it. That said, 
> > those $600 hammers, $1000 pens and $1600 toilet seats probably could 
> > be optimised out of some code (closest parallel to the toilet seat is 
> > the Microsoft paper sodding clip.) Because we want our software to do 
> > so much, we must commit the resources to do that task, on the trust 
> > that programmers are going to respect the finite resources (the same 
> > way we want our governments to respect our finite wallets.)
> -- 
> +---------------------------------------------------------------+
> | Ron Johnson, Jr.        mailto:ron.l.johnson@cox.net          |
> | Jefferson, LA  USA      http://members.cox.net/ron.l.johnson  |
> |                                                               | "My 
> | advice to you is to get married: If you find a good wife, |
> | you will be happy; if not, you will become a philosopher."    |
> |    Socrates                                                   |
> +---------------------------------------------------------------+
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| Ron Johnson, Jr.        mailto:ron.l.johnson@cox.net          |
| Jefferson, LA  USA      http://members.cox.net/ron.l.johnson  |
|                                                               |
| "My advice to you is to get married: If you find a good wife, |
| you will be happy; if not, you will become a philosopher."    |
|    Socrates                                                   |

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