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Warren Watts
October 5th, 2011, 07:57 PM
http://kingbeetle66host.servepics.com/images/TRS-80_Model_1.gif

What a deal! Only $5500.00!!! (in 1977 dollars, to boot!)

sffvba[e0rt
October 5th, 2011, 08:00 PM
So even back then they would throw in a printer to sweeten the deal...


404

Warren Watts
October 5th, 2011, 08:06 PM
A loud, vibrating, clattering beast of a daisy wheel printer that no doubt ran everyone out of the room when it was in use!

But it did produce letter quality output...

dpny
October 5th, 2011, 09:11 PM
In 1989 US$ 5,000 got me a 16 MHz 68030 with 1MB of RAM, a floppy and a 40MB drive, a 13 inch monitor (640x480!) and a little inkjet printer.

Behold!

http://www.vectronicsappleworld.com/macintosh/articlepics/maciicx/image1.jpg

sffvba[e0rt
October 5th, 2011, 09:14 PM
In 1989 US$ 5,000 got me a 16 MHz 68030 with 1MB of RAM, a floppy and a 40MB drive, a 13 inch monitor (640x480!) and a little inkjet printer.

Behold!


Wow, 1MB of RAM... overkill :) (Our first PC was a 386 when they had just come out, and it still had the stock 640k base RAM)... And I am pretty sure it cost about that much too >.<


404

forrestcupp
October 5th, 2011, 09:22 PM
Wow, 1MB of RAM... overkill :) (Our first PC was a 386 when they had just come out, and it still had the stock 640k base RAM)... And I am pretty sure it cost about that much too >.<


404

I definitely remember the good old DOS days when we had to manually worry about managing extended memory with things like HIMEM.SYS.

Dry Lips
October 5th, 2011, 09:25 PM
I definitely remember the good old DOS days when we had to manually worry about managing extended memory with things like HIMEM.SYS.

Yep, did you ever use memmaker?
https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Memmaker#memmaker

I did also edit my autoexec.bat to include a custom menu so that I had several configurations to choose from, depending on what I was going to do...

dpny
October 5th, 2011, 09:42 PM
Wow, 1MB of RAM... overkill :) (Our first PC was a 386 when they had just come out, and it still had the stock 640k base RAM)... And I am pretty sure it cost about that much too >.<


404

My Apple //c--circa 1983--had a mighty 128k!

donkyhotay
October 5th, 2011, 09:45 PM
You guys are making me nostalgic for my C64.

wolfen69
October 5th, 2011, 09:56 PM
The best computers are always $5,000.

earthpigg
October 5th, 2011, 09:57 PM
What is a "Lower Case Kit"?

dpny
October 5th, 2011, 10:08 PM
What is a "Lower Case Kit"?

Some early home computers--Apple //s, TRS-80s, etc.--could only display uppercase characters. You needed to modify them to be able to display lowercase.

Paddy Landau
October 5th, 2011, 10:14 PM
... HIMEM.SYS
That brings back bad memories! What a mess that could be. Then some programs would only run on "extended" memory, while others on "expanded". Fiddle, fiddle, fiddle.

earthpigg
October 5th, 2011, 10:16 PM
Some early home computers--Apple //s, TRS-80s, etc.--could only display uppercase characters. You needed to modify them to be able to display lowercase.

Was it a software modification, hardware, or both (firmware)?

Jesus_Valdez
October 5th, 2011, 10:21 PM
Was it a software modification, hardware, or both (firmware)?
They needed more vapor to be able to display such characters, so with the kit instead of pouring more carbon to produce more steam, they water was pre-heated before entering the engine.

dpny
October 5th, 2011, 10:23 PM
Was it a software modification, hardware, or both (firmware)?

Software and/or hardware. There was no firmware, unless you consider ROM a kind of firmware.

From Wikipedia's entry on the Apple //:


Like the Apple II, the Apple II Plus had no lowercase functionality. All letters from the keyboard were upper-case, there was no caps lock key, and there were no lowercase letters in the text-mode font stored in the computer's ROM. To display lowercase letters, some applications would run in the slower hi-res graphics mode and use a custom font, rather than running in the fast text mode using the font in ROM. Other programs, primarily those where both capitalization and text movement were important, such as word processors, used inverse text mode to represent text that would be lowercase when printed. Alternatively, users could install a custom ROM chip that contained lowercase letters in the font, or purchase one of several third-party 80-column cards that enabled a text mode that could display 80-column, upper- and lower-case text.

sffvba[e0rt
October 5th, 2011, 10:27 PM
That brings back bad memories! What a mess that could be. Then some programs would only run on "extended" memory, while others on "expanded". Fiddle, fiddle, fiddle.

Ah those where the days... My autoexec was written so I could choose to load both the CD-ROM and Sound Blaster, either of the two or neither... All dependent on what I wanted to do and how much memory I would need free to do it :p


404

del_diablo
October 5th, 2011, 10:28 PM
I just think adjusting for inflation is relevant.
So I used this (http://www.westegg.com/inflation/), and got that:

What cost $5493 in 1977 would cost $19530.59 in 2010.

dpny
October 5th, 2011, 10:29 PM
Kids these days. When I was young there was a 50/50 chance your computer would explode when you booted it, and we liked it!

Old_Grey_Wolf
October 6th, 2011, 01:09 AM
I remember those days. The TRS-80 cost me 20% of my yearly income. I was an engineer at the time. I had a degree and making a fairly good salary.

The computer had 16 to 48 KB of RAM, no hard disk, 5.25 inch 80 to 180 KB floppy drives, and the microprocessor was 8-bit and ran at 1 to 1.5 MHz.

Dr. C
October 6th, 2011, 01:49 AM
In 1977. the minimum wage here in BC was $3.00 an hour. The cost of terminal time alone on the University mainframe $10.00 an hour. CPU time, memory time etc was extra. The University mainframe had under 2MB of memory.

Old_Grey_Wolf
October 6th, 2011, 01:58 AM
I just think adjusting for inflation is relevant.
So I used this (http://www.westegg.com/inflation/), and got that:
What cost $5493 in 1977 would cost $19530.59 in 2010.

I did a quick calculation of what I spent on the computer back then compared to my yearly salary. Then I applied the same ratio to my current salary and got a number similar to yours. I did get a promotion here and there that accounts for the difference.

garvinrick4
October 6th, 2011, 02:09 AM
$5500 for word processor, Yet got married in 1977 and bought a New a condo in Los Angeles for 19,000 US dollars.
A home to live in or 4 word processors, HMMM what should I do.

1993,
One Seagate 3.4 gig drive $10,000.00, 16 meg chip $700.00 needed 256 meg to run Desktop publishing station, Quadra 900 I believe Mac $5000.00, Rocket Graphics card to speed up screen redraws in PhotoShop with TIFF's $3000.00, Apple 21 inch dual page monitor $2000.00 PhotoShop $800.00 Quark Express $600.00, disks for sending photo's on 256 meg $100.00 a piece. $3000.00 for the optical drive. All was on SCSI chain with up to 7 devices on chain.
Good year's for digital pre-press business if you had the box's capable of working up to 150 meg TIFF's

forrestcupp
October 6th, 2011, 02:12 AM
Yep, did you ever use memmaker?
https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Memmaker#memmaker

I did also edit my autoexec.bat to include a custom menu so that I had several configurations to choose from, depending on what I was going to do...Yeah, I remember memmaker. And I also remember feeling 1337 when I edited in a menu to the autoexec.bat. :)


That brings back bad memories! What a mess that could be. Then some programs would only run on "extended" memory, while others on "expanded". Fiddle, fiddle, fiddle.And you had to try to get your extended memory to emulate expanded memory. I remember being so frustrated when I had a whopping 16MB of RAM, but I was still getting Out of Memory errors because of memory management.


I remember those days. The TRS-80 cost me 20% of my yearly income. I was an engineer at the time. I had a degree and making a fairly good salary.

The computer had 16 to 48 KB of RAM, no hard disk, 5.25 inch 80 to 180 KB floppy drives, and the microprocessor was 8-bit and ran at 1 to 1.5 MHz.The funny thing is that later, during the C64's heyday, the TRS-80 was an inexpensive piece of crap. It's hard to imagine that when it came out, it was a top-of-the-line $5500 computer system.

Old_Grey_Wolf
October 6th, 2011, 02:19 AM
The funny thing is that later, during the C64's heyday, the TRS-80 was an inexpensive piece of crap. It's hard to imagine that when it came out, it was a top-of-the-line $5500 computer system.

Eventually, the TRS-80 got the nickname Trash-80 (TRaSh-80).
:lolflag:

dpny
October 6th, 2011, 03:34 AM
$5500 for word processor, Yet got married in 1977 and bought a New a condo in Los Angeles for 19,000 US dollars.
A home to live in or 4 word processors, HMMM what should I do.

1993,
One Seagate 3.4 gig drive $10,000.00, 16 meg chip $700.00 needed 256 meg to run Desktop publishing station, Quadra 900 I believe Mac $5000.00, Rocket Graphics card to speed up screen redraws in PhotoShop with TIFF's $3000.00, Apple 21 inch dual page monitor $2000.00 PhotoShop $800.00 Quark Express $600.00, disks for sending photo's on 256 meg $100.00 a piece. $3000.00 for the optical drive. All was on SCSI chain with up to 7 devices on chain.
Good year's for digital pre-press business if you had the box's capable of working up to 150 meg TIFF's

In '92 or so we had a Quadra 700 with an enormous drive (210 MB?) as a production machine.

lisati
October 6th, 2011, 03:49 AM
Ah, memories! I recall a programmable calculator I picked up in the 1980s for $NZ500 that could be expanded to all of 1Kb memory! For a similar price a few years later, I picked up my first x86 machine second hand. It had 20Mb hard drive, had a clock speed of something like 10Mhz and 640k RAM, and a Z80-based network card that I never used. New, it would have cost over $NZ3300, something like the combined cost of my two laptops and "server".

mips
October 6th, 2011, 09:10 AM
Was it a software modification, hardware, or both (firmware)?

I had a 80-column card in mine which gave me lowercase fonts.

donkyhotay
October 6th, 2011, 01:51 PM
That brings back bad memories! What a mess that could be. Then some programs would only run on "extended" memory, while others on "expanded". Fiddle, fiddle, fiddle.

Indeed, exactly how much RAM did I need to run mouse/keyboard? Especially when trying to play a game I didn't have enough RAM for. My first DOS system only had 2MB of RAM and every little K helped when trying to play tie fighter.

forrestcupp
October 6th, 2011, 07:18 PM
Indeed, exactly how much RAM did I need to run mouse/keyboard? Especially when trying to play a game I didn't have enough RAM for. My first DOS system only had 2MB of RAM and every little K helped when trying to play tie fighter.

I almost forgot about making boot disks to boot to a bare bones, minimal DOS just so you could be able to run a game.

Pujims
October 6th, 2011, 08:30 PM
keeping in mind how much $5500 was worth back then:

Cost of Living 1977

How Much things cost in 1977
Yearly Inflation Rate USA6.5%
Year End Close Dow Jones Industrial Average 831
Interest Rates Year End Federal Reserve 7.75%
Average Cost of new house $49,300.00
Average Income per year $15,000.00
Average Monthly Rent $240.00
Cost of a gallon of Gas 65 cents
Bikini$9.00
Renault Gordini $6998,00
BMW 320i $7990.00

Below are some Prices for UK guides in Pounds Sterling
Average House Price 13,650
Gallon of Petrol 0.79
Yearly Inflation Rate UK 15.8%
Interest Rates Year End Bank of England 7.00 %

viperdvman
October 6th, 2011, 09:14 PM
I too remember some of the good ol' days of running DOS and WIndows 3.11, and playing a lot of those old pre-Windows 95 games.

But $5500 for a computer in 1977... I could've gotten a decent car for that money back then. Today in the computer world, with $5500, I could build me an extremely powerful new-gen Intel Core i7 computer on a large and powerful motherboard, running 2 NVidia graphics cards with SLi, top-end Soundblaster audio, AND an NVidia Tesla stream processor installed. Talk about sheer power :D

But does Ubuntu run that stuff?

jonkiribati
October 9th, 2011, 09:40 AM
Yeah my first computer was an 486 an ACER :p with a 13" screen and it was running DOS. I still have a Commodore 64 too :p