BIRTH OF THE PC

Lots of tech sites are celebrating the twenty-year anniversary of personal computing. Here’s a bit of nostalgia from my distant past.

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COMPUTER RECYCLING

Disposing of old computers is a headache. They’re hard on the environment (monitors are no longer permitted in landfills, I believe), but the schools and traditional charities aren’t interested in computers that are more than a couple of years old. Hewlett Packard deserves kudos for beginning an extensive recycling campaign. For a fee (from $13-$34), HP will pick up your old equipment, refurbish it if possible, and recycle it in an environmentally friendly way if it can’t be refurbished. […] continued

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PLAN YOUR NEXT PC PURCHASE

If you’ve been holding out, then your next PC should be a Christmas present to yourself. When Microsoft rolls out Windows XP at the end of October, you’ll see a tremendous amount of hype – and for a change, it looks like the hype will be justified. It is a remarkable operating system, combining tremendous stability with some very appealing new features. […] continued

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HOME NETWORKING

I’m convinced that home networking is going to be huge. The various wireless and phone line options to connect home computers and share an Internet connection are exciting. They will open up possibilities you haven’t even dreamed of yet. You’re going to want this in your house. Trust me.

But not yet. […] continued

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DELL COMPUTERS

As other computer manufacturers fall by the wayside, Dell continues to stand out. They ship promptly, they don’t make very many mistakes, and their customer support is as good as it gets. That is to say, not everyone has a happy experience, but the odds are better with Dell than with any other manufacturer. […] continued

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MORE CHEAP COMPUTERS

Look, this is getting ridiculous. Costco has a few dozen E-Machines today with these specs: Celeron 633MHz processor, 64Mb RAM, 15 Gb HD, plus a DVD drive and the usual accessories. Price: $399.99, including a 15″ monitor! Amazing.

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CHEAP COMPUTERS

Prices are nosediving again. Want a cheap computer? There’s only a few left, but how about an E-Machine E-Monster 1000 – a Pentium III 1GHz processor, 20Gb hard drive, 64Mb of RAM, and a CD recorder – for $775. Remarkable stuff, and prices are only going to be going further down in the next few months. […] continued

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TIME IS NOT ON YOUR COMPUTER’S SIDE

Your computer will probably automatically adjust the time when Daylight Savings Time returns tomorrow morning. But that may be the only thing it gets right about the time. Here’s an article that explains why your computer’s clock is notoriously unreliable.

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GATEWAY FINANCIAL WOES

While Dell continues to be a strong company and a great choice when you’re in the market for a new system, Gateway has been floundering. Although I was an early Gateway booster, I became more and more unhappy with Gateway’s erratic customer service and odd choices of hardware and software. Here’s an article that describes Gateway’s deep financial problems. […] continued

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CHEAP STUFF

Prices on computer products have fallen so fast that it can be frustrating – it’s hard to throw things away, yet the numbers sometimes require it. Want a good example? How about $9.99 for a scanner? And a pretty good one, too. The source, Insight Direct, is a for-real company that also frequently has good prices on whichever E-Machine model is one generation out of date. […] continued

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