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Re: Diskless "Eunuchs" Machines Likely to Fail

-- [ From: amp * EMC.Ver #2.3 ] --


From: Timothy C. May           \ Internet:    ([email protected])

TM> I'm skeptical of the "Diskless Internet Box = Telephone" analogy.

TM> Folks I know who are not computer-savvy, or who have other things
TM> they'd rather be doing, are not likely, as I see it, to buy boxes
TM> that still require them to type messages to other people but that
TM> don't allow them to download and save the interesting stuff they
TM> find.

TM> The telephone appealed to those who truly wanted to "just keep
TM> talking"...that was the beauty of it. Most people don't know how to
TM> touch-type, and typing by hunting-and-pecking is painful and unnatural
TM> for most people.

i guess it kinda depends upon the epoch in which you grow up. when
telephones were first introduced, it didn't seem as natural to people
as it does for us today. i've got a copy of the encyclopedia
britanica published in 1903 that has some _facinating_ stuff on
telecommunications. (i'm in the process of scanning it in. anyone who
is interested in it can email me an i'll send it to you when i'm
done. 1903=no copyright) 

i've seen people's typing skills improve remarkedly just through
sheer repetition. i think that hunt-and-peck falls to look-and-peck
if you find yourself typing to any serious degree rather quickly.

TM> A couple of years ago "the computer for the rest of us" was said to be
TM> a pen-based Newton-type machine, now it is said to be a diskless,
TM> memory-limited "Eunuchs" machine.

unless memory becomes _real cheap_ real fast, diskless workstations
won't do. i don't see why it would be so hard for those pushing these
machines to add enough disk to make it usable and still stay cheap. 

otoh, i don't think the internet is enough of a pull for people to
want machines like this even if they did have local storage. i figure
most people want computers to do something more for them than send
e-mail. hell, i can send e-mail with a modem and dumb terminal. (been
there-done that). i think the thing that will kill this idea will be
the simple fact that people expect a computer to do more than what
those pushing this 'technology' think they do.

TM> I see a greater chance that home game machines, such as the 3DO and
TM> PlayStation machines will get Web browsers done for them than I do that
TM> people will buy machines that are so limited.

good call. i think people will soon be expecting more out of those
game machinges than they currently do. i know i sure as hell would
given the price. why can't current came machines support
telecommunications? the modem i'm using to send this message is
running on a dsp chip. i remember playing falcon-at via modem several
years ago. it was a hoot even at the bauds available then. at 14.4 or
better it would be a real hoot.

TM> The only relevance of this whole topic to Cypherpunks
TM> is....is....minimal.

same here. however, what is happening in the computer business does
have _some_ relevance to crypto as we have to see where the market is

<[email protected]> (since 10/31/88)
<[email protected]>
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November 29, 1995   18:18

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