so if you bought the altair and put it away you could sort of sell it
for the same amount of money-worth today.
In a message dated 12/30/2017 5:10:22 P.M. US Mountain Standard Time,
cctalk at classiccmp.org
It was thus said that the Great Fred Cisin via cctalk once stated:
On Sat, 30 Dec 2017, Murray McCullough via cctalk
I was perusing my old computer magazine
collection the other day and
came across an article entitled: ?Fast-Growing new hobby, Real
Computers you assemble yourself?, Dec. 1976. It was about MITS,
Sphere, IMSAI and SWT. 4K memory was $500. Yikes! Even more here in
Canada. Now this is true Classic Computing. Have a Happy New Year
everyone. May the computing gods shine down on us all in 2018.
Happy computing. Murray :)
OK, a little arithmetic exercise for you.
(a 16C is nice for this, but hardly necessary)
Sounds like fun.
"Moore's Law", which was a prediction,
not a "LAW", has often been
mis-stated as predicting a doubling of speed/capacity every 18 months.
1) Figure out how many 18 month invtervals since then, and what 4k
"should' have morphed into by now.
1) 28 doublings since 1975.
(2017-1975) * 12
4K should (had we truly doubed everything every 18 months) now be 1T
2^12 = 4K
2^40 ~ 1T
2) What did Gordon Moore actually say in 1965?
That the number of transistors in an integrated circuit double every 18
3) How much is $500 of 1976 money worth now?
It depends upon how you calculate it. I'm using this page  for the
calculation, and I get:
Current data is only available till 2016. In 2016, the relative
price worth of $500.00 from 1976 is:
$2,110.00 using the Consumer Price Index
$1,680.00 using the GDP deflator
$2,400.00 using the value of consumer bundle
$2,000.00 using the unskilled wage
$2,450.00 using the Production Worker Compensation
$3,340.00 using the nominal GDP per capita
$4,960.00 using the relative share of GDP
4) Consider how long it took to use a text editor to
make a grocery
shopping list in 1976. How long does it take today?
I would think the same amount of time. Typing is typing.
Does having the grocery list consist of pictures
instead of words, with
audio commentary, and maybe Smell-O-Vision (coming soon), improve the
quality of life?
For me, not really.
How much does it help to be able to contact your
refrigeratior and query its knowledge of its contents?
It could be helpful, but with the current state of IoT, I would not want
to have that ability.
(Keep in mind, that although hardware expanded
Moore's Law, Software follows a corollary of
Boyle's Law, and expands to
fill the available space and use all of the available resources - how
can "modern" software do in 4K?, and how
much is needed to boot the
computer and run a "modern" text editor?)
EMACS is lean and mean compared to some of the "text editors" coming out
5) What percentage of computer users still build from
kits, or from
I would say significantly less than 1%. Say, 5% of 1%? That's probably
in the right ballpark.
6) What has replaced magazines for keeping in touch
with the current
state of computers?
The world wide web, although I do miss the Byte magazine of the 70s and
80s. Not so much the 90s.
-spc (Yeah, I realize these were probably rhetorical in nature ... )