2005-11-14

Star Trek on the Web: Old School

So I find some quote from an interview with Jeri Taylor . . . it was an e-mail posted on Usenet. I searched for the subject line of the e-mail . . . something about "Warp 10" . . . and did further searching. Seems it was a Star Trek news service that came via e-mail, way back in the day . . . it's amazing how much of that kind of info just isn't around anymore. But in any case, I happened upon the sort of website I haven't come across in ages.

http://services.tos.net/

I mean, wow . . . just check that out. "World Wide Web" . . . hehe. And man, I haven't seen a dithered .gif like that in forever. That's from when VGA was good but the new SVGA was awesome. That's the sort of image I'd have opened up in my old "CShow" DOS program (which was so excited to have 'CompuServe .GIF' support) while using StupenDOS as a shell to navigate directories ("WTF is a folder?") more easily than the File Manager in Win 3.11. And heaven forbid you had a .bmp file you wanted to put on your 5.25 floppy . . . you'd probably have to use pkzip from the command line to make a zipped version, but then that was okay because you were used to doing things outside of Windows, especially when it came to playing games.

And that's when you even had Windows 3.1 or 3.11 available . . . back in those days, you booted to the C:> prompt and if for some odd reason you wanted to go into Windows you typed "win", which if I remember correctly was just a batch file on the C: drive's main directory . . . though it's not like I have my old 486DX4/100 around to hit 'dir/w' on to check. She had SVGA and an eye-popping 540Mb hard drive, with real Sound Blaster sound. Oh, sure, those new Pentiums had come out, but the DX4s could beat them, and didn't have a goofy name either.

Ack! I'm old!

4 comments:

  1. Neh, you're not that old. I'm probably younger than you (I've been able to drink legally for a month), and I remember using BBSes on dumb terminals, and playing games I typed in from books/magazines.
    As much fun as it was to CD DUKE1, DN1 to play the game (after screwing with config.sys/autoexec.bat for an hour to get enough free memory) and playing about in win3.1, I prefer living in the future.
    We've got command lines that don't suck (DOS 5 and BASH are related, but it's about the same amount as me and king kong), GUIs that are useable, the bloody interweb, and EMULATORS! (DosBox!)
    I'd be alot more nostalgic if I couldn't play Commander Keen in 2 clicks and a bit of typey-typey. :)

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  2. Nice of you to say I'm not old, but what I didn't mention my first IBM-compatible computer. 286's were hella-quick back in the day. ;)

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  3. Hell, I've still got a 286! :)

    On a more Trek v. Wars note, did you notice in ENT: "The Forgotten", when Trip was bugging Degra:

    "When we slipped through your detection grid, we got a look at the weapon you're building... An impressive piece of engineering.
    Hell, it'd take at least... a thousand ships like Enterprise to blow up an entire planet."

    Thought it was funny, I seem to remember Solo mentioning something along the same numbers :)

    If you go by these two remarks, it sounds like ENT and SW are equal in terms of planetexplody. (I say 'ENT' and not 'Trek' because we know that at least by DS9:"A die is cast", you can take out a planet with well under a thousand (Cardassian/Romulan) ships)

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  4. Few errors in there.

    1. win wasn't a batch file but a .com file in the windows directory (which was probably in your path).
    2. 486 DX4s were slower than even the lowest clocked Pentiums, they sometimes appeared faster for two reasons:
    a) many systems with Pentiums didn't have enough RAM and so would perform slower than a computer with more RAM but an inferior processor.
    b) many systems with Pentiums came with Windoze 95 while the DX4s were shipping with 3.1.

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