Friday, May 7, 2010

Computers and history

Computers are fun and interesting, they are also frustrating as everyone out there knows. In the case of computers a little knowledge is dangerous. Sort of like a person who is on a lot of meds. The doctor must be careful in prescribing a new one for fear of what it will do to the ones already prescribed.
That is how I see my computer system. I have just spent 30 minutes trying to get rid of the highlight as I type. I was highlighting yellow. I even tried to change the color to see if the highlighter was controlling it, nada. Now it is gone, and I do not know how I got rid of it. I also have the problem of underlines. I am typing long and somehow I hit the exact keys that are a shot cut to underline or strike thru and all of a sudden I cannot delete anything, just draw a line through it.

Above is the famous Eniac, the worlds first real computer. Your cell phone will do more, faster and more accurate than it could.

There are times I delete an entire document because I cannot ‘fix’ what I have messed up. If you follow my blog you know I have tried, done or been many things in my life. Not making me smarter than anyone, just more fickle. I have been blessed with an ability to fix things. Sometimes I fix things and don’t know how I done it. Anyway in one of my lives I was an Analog computer repairman, then a Digital Computer repairman, and finally an IBM Electronic Accounting Machines (EAM) repairman. Remember the IBM card?

This is a key punch machine this happens to be an 026 IBM. It creates the punched card. I repaired a ton of these.

(The IBM CArd. I have handled millions of these over the years. Did you ever get a Gov't ck, tax refund? Coulda been from a machine I have worked on. Or, me or one of my guys printed it.)
Since then I have been in and out of computers and electronics off and on all my life. Now I am saddled with the questions, how do they do all of this stuff? How do they create something the size of a pea, that will store a hundred books? I cannot imagine the number of commands it takes just to make the screen I am looking at as I type. How do they make and sell a watch for $3-5 that is as accurate as the $20,000 Rolex? How? How?

This is the Burroughs 205 (I think), the computer I worked on looked like this, but was called the "T-2B" (short for AN/FST-2B) Of course newer than the Eniac, but still could not compete with your cell phone, much less this PC I am typing on. The A/C unit was larger than the computer. It had to remain at 69 degrees, constant.
Then I try to say, I DON’T CARE!!!! JUST GET RID OF THE YELLOW HIGHLIGHT ON MY SCREEN, OR I MIGHT JUST SMASH IT. Hahahahahaha! Funny also I might be typing a long, look up and see nothing on the screen. I have accidentally hit the secret key, known only to Mr. Microsoft, that sends my entries to never, never land with some of Shirls, yours and mine.
Thanks for coming by the log. Nah, I ain’t mad, I am glad to be here. Life is good! I can make another entry.
Nite Shipslog
You might not know…..
The term 'The Big Apple' was coined by touring jazz musicians of the 1930's who used the slang expression 'apple' for any town or city. Therefore, to play New York City is to play the big time - The Big Apple.


I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

I just read about your visit with the BR Boomer. How great you all got to meet. I'm going to be following your blog now to see where you are off to next. Hope your Friday is a fantastic one. I enjoyed all the computer info in this entry. How times have changed.

Anonymous said...


Lucy said...

How do you know so much about computers???? I know how to take care of them. Shirl taught me. Thank you both for being so supportive, on a serious note. On another serious note, that Dr. was good looking but Joe is the one I go home with. lol. A bit weak so only getting to a few blogs. You are among the Journalers so that means we go back a ways and had to get back to you and Sherry.

Paula said...

Can't you just picture all those lost entries having a big party and without us.

Fred Alton said...

Ahh! Loran-A. The memories of a room full of transmitters and receivers at the Loran Station in Biloxi, MS (where we met you and Sherry) and then Adak, Alaska. They had to clear me for "secret" information in 1960 when they assigned me to work on Loran-C. As you pointed out - a cell phone will do more than Loran-C. I don't think I showed you my Amateur Radio Station (WA4BDL) when you were here! I was certified as a "Communications Electronics Technician" in 1987 or 88, by NRI. Still have trouble with "pop-ups" and such. TNX FER D MEMRIES 73 ...-.-X

Anonymous said...

Hi Jack and happy you guys got such a "surprise" your pictures are so pretty...and about the IBM Key Punch machine...I am well acquainted with that little booger...I worked one for a while on my very first job with an insurance company...but found out real quick that I didn't care for that type of put in for transfer right was too late...hurry...and I got a job typing insurance policies....much much more fun...LOL..get a policy for one of the big trucking companies..could take three days to type it all LOLOL...God Bless and hugs to you both...Ora

~mel said...

ahhh.... so you're the guy I could have blamed for such a small refund check!

I hope you can figure out the glitches when they show up without too much frustration. Knock on wood... lately my computer has actually been running pretty good; give or take a few grinding noises that I know aren't suppose to be there. hmmm... it's kinda like me... taking on human form ~ scary thought.

shirl72 said...

I rather not discuss computers we just don't get
aong. They refuss to do what I want them to do.
I do remember the old IBM rooms. Guess you are
on your way home.


Ally Lifewithally said...

I enjoyed reading your entry I found it most interesting ~ Ally x

Dar said...

Computers......baaaah...I have to call on Mel every time I get in trouble...cause, I, I am the ultimate computer idiot...kinda like the old saying, "Wild flowers fade fast, but blooming idiots last forever". Yuppers, that would be me on one of these new-fangled thingamajigs
Have a Great Mothers Day Weekend with all the Moms you Know out there.

Anonymous said...

Most of what I write is pre-written with a pencil. There was even a summer when I spend three weeks writing a single letter, with a fountain peen and nearly endless ink. Love to smell old books and hear the sound a pencil makes...
Please have you all a wonderful Sunday.