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Tim Sneath
It's time to upgrade my Mac. The SE/30 on the left has served me very well over the years, but the small monochrome screen is starting to limit my productivity. And the new ones come with a DVD player, a new PowerPC G4 and a built-in Ethernet and modem!
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
Unpacking my new iMac. Great to not have to worry about floppy disks anymore. This comes with OS X Panther as well as EarthLink so I can join the World Wide Web. Can't wait to check out the World Book encyclopedia too -- all on one disk. Crazy!
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
OK, this is officially just the cutest thing. Check out those speakers: they're like little acrylic crystals. And that mouse doesn't even have a single button. So minimalist. Cool of them to include a modem cable: very Apple to include all the cables you need in-box!
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
Think I've got it all connected and set up right. This looks SO MODERN compared to my SE/30. I love the monitor arm. Steve Jobs was right -- you can move it with just a finger. Should I power it on, do you think?
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
Oh my goodness! I've just turned it on. It makes that friendly startup sound like my SE/30 did -- but just check out what happens next... I've moved up in the world now; that music shows I'm hanging with the cool kids.
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
OK, being asked some questions now (sorry for the Moiré effect, still tweaking the settings on my SCSI handheld photo scanner). I was going to select MIS/IT as my profession, but I heard the young college grads are calling themselves "webmasters" now, so I'm going to pick that.
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
"Life on the Internet"? That sounds wild. Sign me up! .Mac trial membership sounds good, particularly the world-class email account.
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
Phooey -- the connection is busy. I guess there must be lots of other folk also trying to sign up for .Mac right now. Oh well, I can take care of that later. Onwards!
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
And I'm logged in. First site of this beautiful new world. This is sooo different from my Macintosh SE/30. So colorful. So much to explore. Can't wait to check out some of those cool apps at the bottom of the screen. Time to sign up for AIM and see what everyone's talking about.
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
OK, this new CD player thing is trippy! So... digital. And it gives Prokofiev a whole new lease of life.
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @MicrosoftEdge
I was going to try this Microsoft Internet Explorer thing that came along with the EarthLink service, but for some reason I can't get to MSN. Too bad. , is this something you can help with? Can I order a CD from you?
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
Taking a moment to check out the manual. There's so much to do here. As I join the digital music revolution, I particularly appreciate that Apple has thoughtfully included a playlist of "all time favs". Want to check out this popular song "Happy", sung by Amy Grant.
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
Useful tip from EarthLink about turning your computer off for 30 seconds whenever something goes wrong. I used to administer the department Windows NT 3.5 file server and tried this when I couldn't log in. Sue from Accounting was really mad with me for some reason.
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
Sorry, y'all. I disappeared for a while because I was busy checking out the World Book 2004 software. This is incredible: it's a whole CD-ROM full of knowledge. Literally tens of thousands of articles. I'm learning so much.
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
One last thing before getting down to some fun -- it's never too late to set up a .NET Passport. It is free, after all, and I know it's the future, after recently attending the conference on :
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
OK, time for a couple of games to wind down. Love that Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4 comes out of the box. Always great to show off my tricks by grinding on a rail or two.
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Tim Sneath Oct 10
Replying to @timsneath
But ultimately, you just can't beat the classics. Fortunately this iMac still supports all my macOS 9 software, including Crystal Quest and Risk. I'm off to attack Irkutsk from my new stronghold in Kamchatka. Night all!
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
More seriously, this morning: two things stand out to me. Stand by for a short appendix to the thread above.
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
1. Firstly, the pace of technological development over the late 90s / early 2000s was stunning. The difference between the SE/30 and the iMac is a giant leap in every way. Those ten or so years propelled the personal computer forward like no other.
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
The SE/30 was the pinnacle of its time for compactness, user interface and productivity. But at a price of nearly $10k in today's money it was out of reach for even most businesses, who settled for a DOS-powered IBM or Compaq beige box.
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
The iMac G4 is surprisingly modern, and other than SSL issues with accessing the 2020 internet, it's still very capable. I'm playing up the time capsule element above: in practice, you can do real photo editing, coding, gaming and office work at a quarter the price of the SE/30.
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
Moore's Law is very visibly at work in both the capability of the machine and in creating oxygen to build a better user experience.
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
By comparison, the gap between a 2010 MacBook and a 2020 MacBook is shockingly narrow. Looking at this spec sheet from 2020 eyes, I'm imagining that this computer would run today's software reasonably well if macOS supported it:
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
2.66GHz CPU, 8GB RAM, 320GB HDD, Gigabit Ethernet, 8GB RAM, 5GHz wireless -- that's a spec you could probably pick up in Walmart today. A vivid example of how the pace of change has slowed.
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
2. It's also noticeable how innovative this iMac is from a design standpoint. My eldest daughter was born a year after this computer went on sale. I should have recorded her comments as she saw it. "It's sooo cute... why don't they make computers like this anymore?"
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
I'm pretty sure that if they sold a Mac like this with modern components, she'd be first in line. And of course, with today's SoC hardware, a Jonathan Ive could craft something even closer to a Platonic ideal for this design.
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
There's a reason why this computer is at the MoMA. It's a design classic, and deserves its place there for decades to come: .
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
By comparison, today's devices are slabs of machined aluminum and display panels. Functional? Certainly, but missing the whimsicality of these older machines. I miss that personality. There's not much JOY in today's MacBook or iPhone. Hoping that we can see a return soon...
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Tim Sneath Oct 11
Replying to @timsneath
/thread
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