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Old 04-02-2008, 08:29 PM
Tim
 
Default Linux is KING - Couldn't be hacked - Mac, Vista went down in flames

On Wed, 2008-04-02 at 09:31 -0500, Mikkel L. Ellertson wrote:
> Microsoft's entry into the personal computer market was by supplying
> a version of BASIC that for several operating systems.

And wasn't it awful... I know BASIC's sneered upon, as there are plenty
of better things, but BASIC was a simple starting position for a lot of
people. It was also the only system available for a lot of home
personal computing, for a long time. Though, it typically was a very
feature limited interpreter. We had it on a Data General mainframe,
amongst other languages, and that went in the opposite direction - very
featured, and gave you very verbose and lengthy error reports about your
syntax errors.

Many years ago I can remember tinkering around with Microsoft's BASIC on
the Amiga, since it was the only programming language I had to play with
on it, at the time. And actually managing to make a small relational
database with it, even though it hardly has the features that you need
for something like that. It wasn't anything really complex though, just
interrelated databases of services, clients, quotes, and the ability to
turn a quote into an invoice.

--
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important to the thread.)

Don't send private replies to my address, the mailbox is ignored.
I read messages from the public lists.

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Old 04-02-2008, 08:34 PM
Les
 
Default Linux is KING - Couldn't be hacked - Mac, Vista went down in flames

On Wed, 2008-04-02 at 13:21 -0500, Mikkel L. Ellertson wrote:
> Les wrote:
> > On my punch cards they did. Every card had a number sequential to the
> > sequence. The punch we used inserted them automatically. Well, the
> > programming card did. The reference number used for calls may have been
> > different, but I don't remember it.
> >
> > Our programs were HUGE, multiple trays. Each tray was denoted by the
> > color of the diagonal line. We had 8 colors, so I guess we never had
> > more than 8 trays, because I don't remember pairs of lines anywhere.
> >
> > Regards,
> > Les H
> Was the number actually punched in the card, or was it only printed
> on the top of the card? Printed on the top of the card would not
> require any modification of the card reader routine, and would not
> eat up columns on the punch card. If I remember correctly, you only
> had 80/card.
>
> If the number was punched, I could picture a program that would
> re-order the program based on the number, if the cards were messed
> up, but you would probably have needed a mini-computer to do that,
> and feed it to the mainframe.
>
> Mikkel
No you didn't, we used a card sorter, it was a mechanical affair, with a
drum that fed the cards past brushes which would touch the drum through
the hole in the card. This would activate a relay which would pick up
the appropriate stack of feeding reeds which routed the card to the
correct one of 10 locations. You selected which column to sort, and
started with the highest order column first (If I remember correctly).

We also had mechanical tape readers, the small hole in the center of
the tape was the drive. Small fingers would sense the holes punched in
the tape. 5 level, caps+numbers+a limited number of punctuation marks.

I also helped clean and adjust the teleltypes. Do any of you know what
the "stunt box" is?

Regards,
Les H

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Old 04-03-2008, 02:32 AM
Matthew Saltzman
 
Default Linux is KING - Couldn't be hacked - Mac, Vista went down in flames

On Thu, 2008-04-03 at 06:30 +1000, Michael D. Setzer II wrote:
>
> On 2 Apr 2008 at 18:09, Matthew Saltzman wrote:

> > On Wed, 2008-04-02 at 09:48 -0700, Les wrote:
> > > On my punch cards they did. Every card had a number sequential to the
> > > sequence. The punch we used inserted them automatically. Well, the
> > > programming card did. The reference number used for calls may have been
> > > different, but I don't remember it.
> >
> > Those weren't line numbers per se (in the sense that BASIC had line
> > numbers, for example). In FORTRAN, an 80-column card was divided into
> > fields:
> >
> > Column 1: 'C' indicated a comment line, ' ' a code line.
> >
>
> Columnt 1-5: is for line numbers and on many compilers they had to be right
> aligned.

OK, but these are the statement labels described below, not line numbers
per se.

>
> > Column 2-6: Statement label numbers. These were arbitrary numbers used
> > as targets for FORMAT, GOTO and "computed GOTO" (now *that* was a flow
> > control concept!), and DO statements. These did not have to obey any
> > ordering rules. There was no concept of an if-else block or a while
> > loop with a logical test, so flow control was handled by GOTOs of some
> > variety. Targeted statements were usually CONTINUE statements (no-ops),
> > because there was some ambiguity regarding when the targeted statement
> > was actually executed, and because it made reorganizing the flow a bit
> > easier (especially with punchcards[1]).
> >
>
> Column 6: Was used for continuing information from the previous card.
> Generally putting a 1 in column 6 for the first continuation line, and 2, and so
> on, but most didn't care. COBOL uses Column 7 for this, and uses a hyphen
> if splitting a word or quoted text.

Damn, forgot the continuation character.

>
>
> > Column 7-72: Code.
> >
> > Column 73-80: Ignored. Intended to be used for sequence numbers so you
> > could sort the cards down in order if somebody dropped the deck. The
> > numbers could be anything really, for example a three-letter alpha code
> > identifying the deck and a four-digit sequence number.
> >
> > (Somebody is bound to correct me on the actual column numbers, now...)

Thanks for the corrections. I wasn't near my FORTRAN Coloring Book
(Roger Kaufman, Cambridge, Massachusetts and London England, The MIT
Press, 1978. 285 pp., paperback ISBN 0 262 61026 4,
http://www.seas.gwu.edu/~kaufman1/FortranColoringBook/ColoringBkCover.html) when I wrote that.

--
Matthew Saltzman

Clemson University Math Sciences
mjs AT clemson DOT edu
http://www.math.clemson.edu/~mjs

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Old 04-03-2008, 01:46 PM
George Yanos
 
Default Linux is KING - Couldn't be hacked - Mac, Vista went down in flames

Speaking as a geezer who still has thousands of punch cards in the
basement, and carefully picked a color laserjet partly on the basis of
its ability to print on them, punch cards were only rarely hacked.

You could get the attention of the old phone company by sending back
your punch card bill slip with different holes than the cards had when
they sent them.

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Old 04-03-2008, 06:15 PM
Ric Moore
 
Default Linux is KING - Couldn't be hacked - Mac, Vista went down in flames

On Wed, 2008-04-02 at 07:45 -0700, Craig White wrote:
> On Wed, 2008-04-02 at 09:31 -0500, Mikkel L. Ellertson wrote:
> > Les wrote:
> > > Actually, Microsoft was a late comer to personal computers. I own
> > > (still) an Altair 8800B, and owned a
> > > Morrow Microdecision before that, both on CP/M. And prior to that I had
> > > systems that ran various other OS's
> > > that were a bit more limited, and one straight bootstrap system for
> > > which you had to furnish an OS of your favorite
> > > flavor. Microsoft did not create, or really enable personal computers,
> > > they just got the contract to write the OS for IBM, and were able to
> > > bootstrap that into the corporation you see today.
> > >
> > Microsoft's entry into the personal computer market was by supplying
> > a version of BASIC that for several operating systems. I can
> > remember loading it from tape, and later burning it to EPROM with a
> > small relocation program to move it into RAM at the address it
> > expected to run. (It was not relocatable...)
> ----
> I have that tape still...
>
> Microsoft's version for Apple...called 'Floating Point Basic Language'
> for Apple ][ because my original Apple ][ had integer basic in ROM and
> Floating Point Basic had to be loaded from a cassette. I do sort of
> wonder if it has any value.

THAT's the one I had, what a pirating tool it was, too!! Heheheh, just
note the starting address of a binary program loaded into memory, note
the length, and save it to tape after hitting the reset button. Then
we'd load up a real system disk, reload the program back from tape and
"bsave" it to a floppy, noting the start and length parameters, and you
had that sucker. God only knows how many space games we liberated from
copy-protected disks. Then, Jobs decided to make the Apple][+, so there
would be no more pirating shenanigans. Right. We made eprom copies of
the original integer basic roms to load into the plus machines. Those
were the good-ole days, for sure. I still have a cassette copy of the
Apple floating point basic, too. I wish I had kept the Red and Blue
Books. Woz was/is a Saint. I wish he'd come out on the Linux side. Ric





--
================================================
My father, Victor Moore (Vic) used to say:
"There are two Great Sins in the world...
..the Sin of Ignorance, and the Sin of Stupidity.
Only the former may be overcome." R.I.P. Dad.
Linux user# 44256 Sign up at: http://counter.li.org/
http://www.sourceforge.net/projects/oar
http://www.wayward4now.net <---down4now too
================================================

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Old 04-03-2008, 06:19 PM
Ric Moore
 
Default Linux is KING - Couldn't be hacked - Mac, Vista went down in flames

On Thu, 2008-04-03 at 06:59 +1030, Tim wrote:
> On Wed, 2008-04-02 at 09:31 -0500, Mikkel L. Ellertson wrote:
> > Microsoft's entry into the personal computer market was by supplying
> > a version of BASIC that for several operating systems.
>
> And wasn't it awful... I know BASIC's sneered upon, as there are plenty
> of better things, but BASIC was a simple starting position for a lot of
> people. It was also the only system available for a lot of home
> personal computing, for a long time. Though, it typically was a very
> feature limited interpreter. We had it on a Data General mainframe,
> amongst other languages, and that went in the opposite direction - very
> featured, and gave you very verbose and lengthy error reports about your
> syntax errors.
>
> Many years ago I can remember tinkering around with Microsoft's BASIC on
> the Amiga, since it was the only programming language I had to play with
> on it, at the time. And actually managing to make a small relational
> database with it, even though it hardly has the features that you need
> for something like that. It wasn't anything really complex though, just
> interrelated databases of services, clients, quotes, and the ability to
> turn a quote into an invoice.

cp/m had all kinda sort and list commands. I'm just not sure which would
have been better, to be under the evil domination of Digital or
Microsoft. <grins> cp/m ][ was pretty nice, though. It did pretty much
whatever I wanted it to do. Ric

--
================================================
My father, Victor Moore (Vic) used to say:
"There are two Great Sins in the world...
..the Sin of Ignorance, and the Sin of Stupidity.
Only the former may be overcome." R.I.P. Dad.
Linux user# 44256 Sign up at: http://counter.li.org/
http://www.sourceforge.net/projects/oar
http://www.wayward4now.net <---down4now too
================================================

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Old 04-03-2008, 09:58 PM
Tim
 
Default Linux is KING - Couldn't be hacked - Mac, Vista went down in flames

On Thu, 2008-04-03 at 08:46 -0500, George Yanos wrote:
> Speaking as a geezer who still has thousands of punch cards in the
> basement, and carefully picked a color laserjet partly on the basis of
> its ability to print on them, punch cards were only rarely hacked.
>
> You could get the attention of the old phone company by sending back
> your punch card bill slip with different holes than the cards had when
> they sent them.

Hahaha. I'm kind of surprised that they'd give something out to clients
that'd make them vulnerable.

Way back when I worked in a library, we used barcode labels on each item
for the library management system. We'd have people return things with
extra lines coloured in the barcode, who always swore that they didn't
do it, and it must have been like that when they borrowed it. It never
occurred to them that we knew that was rubbish. The items were scanned
on the way out, and back on the way in. If it was tampered with
beforehand, they'd have errored when first scanned. We made them stump
up the cash for relabeling.

--
(This computer runs FC7, my others run FC4, FC5 & FC6, in case that's
important to the thread.)

Don't send private replies to my address, the mailbox is ignored.
I read messages from the public lists.

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Old 04-04-2008, 01:58 AM
Craig White
 
Default Linux is KING - Couldn't be hacked - Mac, Vista went down in flames

On Thu, 2008-04-03 at 14:15 -0400, Ric Moore wrote:
> On Wed, 2008-04-02 at 07:45 -0700, Craig White wrote:
> > On Wed, 2008-04-02 at 09:31 -0500, Mikkel L. Ellertson wrote:
> > > Les wrote:
> > > > Actually, Microsoft was a late comer to personal computers. I own
> > > > (still) an Altair 8800B, and owned a
> > > > Morrow Microdecision before that, both on CP/M. And prior to that I had
> > > > systems that ran various other OS's
> > > > that were a bit more limited, and one straight bootstrap system for
> > > > which you had to furnish an OS of your favorite
> > > > flavor. Microsoft did not create, or really enable personal computers,
> > > > they just got the contract to write the OS for IBM, and were able to
> > > > bootstrap that into the corporation you see today.
> > > >
> > > Microsoft's entry into the personal computer market was by supplying
> > > a version of BASIC that for several operating systems. I can
> > > remember loading it from tape, and later burning it to EPROM with a
> > > small relocation program to move it into RAM at the address it
> > > expected to run. (It was not relocatable...)
> > ----
> > I have that tape still...
> >
> > Microsoft's version for Apple...called 'Floating Point Basic Language'
> > for Apple ][ because my original Apple ][ had integer basic in ROM and
> > Floating Point Basic had to be loaded from a cassette. I do sort of
> > wonder if it has any value.
>
> THAT's the one I had, what a pirating tool it was, too!! Heheheh, just
> note the starting address of a binary program loaded into memory, note
> the length, and save it to tape after hitting the reset button. Then
> we'd load up a real system disk, reload the program back from tape and
> "bsave" it to a floppy, noting the start and length parameters, and you
> had that sucker. God only knows how many space games we liberated from
> copy-protected disks. Then, Jobs decided to make the Apple][+, so there
> would be no more pirating shenanigans. Right. We made eprom copies of
> the original integer basic roms to load into the plus machines. Those
> were the good-ole days, for sure. I still have a cassette copy of the
> Apple floating point basic, too. I wish I had kept the Red and Blue
> Books. Woz was/is a Saint. I wish he'd come out on the Linux side. Ric
----
yeah...I have no idea what happened to my 'red' book either (I never saw
the blue book).

As for Woz...he's probably still holding too much Apple stock to
seriously consider anything public about Linux but you know he's fooled
with it. What the hey...he's busy playing hide the salami with you know
who.

Craig

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Old 04-04-2008, 02:35 AM
Craig White
 
Default Linux is KING - Couldn't be hacked - Mac, Vista went down in flames

On Thu, 2008-04-03 at 19:12 -0700, Rick Stevens wrote:

> Hey, be nice! First off, remember Gary Kildall's company was Digital
> Research, Inc.--NOT Digital Equipment Corp. (at the time chaired by
> Ken Olson).
>
> I worked for DRI on CP/M and MP/M. There were some nomenclature and UI
> similarities between DEC's RT-11 or RSTS and CP/M, but they were NOT the
> same company--not by a long shot. They were even on different coasts!
>
> IBM went with Microsoft because they arrived for a meeting with Gary,
> but he was out flying his airplane and missed it. IBM got ticked off
> and called Microsoft. We've never been sure if IBM was a day early
> (as Gary always claimed) or Gary screwed up his calendar. Either one is
> as likely as the other (IBM can be petulant and Gary could be very
> scatterbrained at times).
----
my memory of things ain't what it used to be but I vaguely remember that
Kildall was off hang gliding and not flying an airplane.

Craig

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Old 04-04-2008, 02:54 PM
George Yanos
 
Default Linux is KING - Couldn't be hacked - Mac, Vista went down in flames

* Nicholas Robinson <npr@bottlehall.co.uk> [2008-04-03 23:25:19 +0100]:
...
>
> I'm sorry if I'm intruding on your privacy, but why on earth do you what to
> print on punch cards in 2008? Are these punch cards already punched? Is it
> for some sort of pre-Microsoft theme park merchandise? God, I hope you reply
> before I go to bed or I may lie awake the rest of the night wondering...
...

Don't remember when the key punch room closed, but there were half a
pallet of punch cards left in a storage room for years. Just before
they were tossed, I took them home.

At some point I got a Palm Pilot. Had to keep it in a pocket or it
would have been left someplace. Front pocket -- scratched by keys and
coins and cracked perhaps by sitting. Rear pocket -- cracked by sitting
on. Shirt pocket the only remaining choice. It fell and broke the
screen. $100. Fell again. $100 again. (seems to me the Euro was about
.80 dollars then, pre W.)

Anyway, it turns out you can forget to write on punch card backs as
easily as on a palm pilot, and they don't break. You keep a file on
your computer, update it from the cards now and then, and print a new
deck. Besides, they are a great conversation starter.

PS: They are not punched. The punched ones are valuable antiques.

PPS: one floppy holds about as much data as two cases of punch cards,
20000 cards, 70 pounds or so.


************************************************** *******************
* George Yanos * *
* UTC at UIC * *
* 312-413-0059(w) * *
* 708-848-4221(h) * *
* gyanos@uic.edu * *
************************************************** *******************

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