[CLUG-chat] This will run Linux quite nicely...

Jonathan Carter jonathan at shuttleworthfoundation.org
Thu Sep 22 11:01:25 SAST 2005


Izak Burger wrote:
> I tend to ask, how much more do we do on our computers today that we
> could not do ten years ago?  Agreed, there ARE certain things we do now
> we did not do then, and we do work differently now.  But really, how
> many are there?  You could probably count them on one hand.

10 years ago, my computer was a 386sx/33 with 2MB RAM, a 40MB hard disk,
512KB SVGA Trident card, 1.2MB floppy drive. The OS it ran was MS-DOS
6.0 with Windows 3.1 providing me with a GUI. I basically used it for:

 * Playing games (Civilization, Wolfenstein, Dangerous Dave, Skyroads, etc)
 * Doing some graphics design (if it can be called that) with Micrografx
Picture publisher 5.0, Print Artist 2.0
 * Doing school assignments (MS Write)
 * I didn't have a sound card, so I copied mod files that I played over
the pc-speaker

Today I have fairly modest computer specs, but I can do so much more.
PC's that I use in daily use all run some form of GNU/Linux. And
sometimes I like to play with BSD and GNU. I use my computer for:

 * Communicating (e-mail, jabber, irc)
 * Learning (the www, wikipedia, clug, google!)
 * Entertainment, I can listen to ogg/mp3, play dvd's
 * Keeping organised, and I can even sync to my phone
 * Playing with servers (apache, postfix, ltsp (and the things it's made
out of), etc)

Then there are lots of technologies that simplyfy things, CSS, RSS, and
look at how space have improved, instead of carying a big bag of 1.2MB
floppies, I can now fit a huge amount of data on a single DVD, and it's
become so, so cheap (some calculations i made previously
http://jonathancarter.co.za/blog/?postid=10).

I think that in the last 10 years, there's been major shifts in personal
computing. I think what you say is more true for the last 5 years, but
if you talk to the vast majority of people who have been using computers
the last 10 years, that most people have much, much more use for their
computers than in 1995.

-Jonathan



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