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'[OT] 1st PC?'
2010\05\23@224554 by John Gardner

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Check this out, before eBay takes it down...

cgi.ebay.com/Kenbak-1-computer-RARE-VINTAGE-PC-/320522921808?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4aa0a7a750

2010\05\24@135328 by Vitaliy

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John Gardner wrote:
> Check this out, before eBay takes it down...
>
> http://cgi.ebay.com/Kenbak-1-computer-RARE-VINTAGE-PC-/320522921808?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4aa0a7a750

It went for $25,600 -- not bad. :)

Vitaliy

2010\05\28@060119 by Electron

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My God.. is this REALLY worth US$ 25600?

Even from the point of view of a nostalgic with a lot of money and no idea how to spend it..

I know, this is entirely subjective, but.. IMHO it entirely belongs to the crazy realm.


At 04.45 2010.05.24, you wrote:
>Check this out, before eBay takes it down...
>
>cgi.ebay.com/Kenbak-1-computer-RARE-VINTAGE-PC-/320522921808?cm
>d=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4aa0a7a750
>-

2010\05\28@061127 by Michael Rigby-Jones

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> -----Original Message-----
> From: spam_OUTpiclist-bouncesTakeThisOuTspammit.edu [.....piclist-bouncesKILLspamspam@spam@mit.edu] On
Behalf
> Of Electron
> Sent: 28 May 2010 11:00
> To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
> Subject: Re: [OT] 1st PC?
>
>
> My God.. is this REALLY worth US$ 25600?
>
> Even from the point of view of a nostalgic with a lot of money and no
idea
> how to spend it..
>

Are rare stamps worth the money that people pay for them?

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2010\05\28@062724 by Alan B Pearce

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>> My God.. is this REALLY worth US$ 25600?
>>
>> Even from the point of view of a nostalgic with a lot of money and no
> idea
>> how to spend it..
>>
>
> Are rare stamps worth the money that people pay for them?


Or millions of dollars for an oil painting?

2010\05\28@083647 by RussellMc

face picon face
> My God.. is this REALLY worth US$ 25600?
> Even from the point of view of a nostalgic with a lot of money and no idea how to spend it..
> I know, this is entirely subjective, but.. IMHO it entirely belongs to the crazy realm.

No. It's not entirely nostal;gic. That may or may not be a factor, but:

Anything that you can buy this year for $N and sell with certainty for
k x $N, y years later where

           k > OR >>  (1+AIR/100)^y        for many but perhaps not
all values of y.

Where AIR = average compound inflation rate in %, is well worthwhile
as an investment.

This qualifies :-).



              Russell

2010\05\28@084033 by Electron

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At 12.11 2010.05.28, you wrote:
>
>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: piclist-bouncesspamKILLspammit.edu [.....piclist-bouncesKILLspamspam.....mit.edu] On
>Behalf
>> Of Electron
>> Sent: 28 May 2010 11:00
>> To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
>> Subject: Re: [OT] 1st PC?
>>
>>
>> My God.. is this REALLY worth US$ 25600?
>>
>> Even from the point of view of a nostalgic with a lot of money and no
>idea
>> how to spend it..
>>
>
>Are rare stamps worth the money that people pay for them?

Objectively NO.

Subjectively, ANYTHING is possible.. however, this doesn't put things out
of the "crazy" realm.

I.e. the fact that someone would spend one million of dollars for a cigarette,
doesn't make it a "sensible" way of spending money. Of course, one is free to
do whatever he/she wants with his/her money.. but that, as said, is a different
argument.

2010\05\28@093106 by RussellMc

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>>> .... is this REALLY worth US$ 25600?
>>>
>>> Even from the point of view of a nostalgic with a lot of money and no
>>idea
>>> how to spend it..

>>Are rare stamps worth the money that people pay for them?

> Objectively NO.

> Subjectively, ANYTHING is possible.. however, this doesn't put things out
> of the "crazy" realm.
>
> I.e. the fact that someone would spend one million of dollars for a cigarette,
> doesn't make it a "sensible" way of spending money. Of course, one is free to
> do whatever he/she wants with his/her money.. but that, as said, is a different
> argument.

There are at least two aspects to consider.

1. See my prior  formula. All it says, of course, is that if you buy
something that is certain to appreciate in value at (well) in excess
of the inflation rate then it makes reasonable economic sense to do
so.

SOME attempts to do this fail.
eg AFAIR Van Gogh's "Sunflowers" sold for far above it's subsequent valuation.
BUT this calculator will almost certainly continue to appreciate.
This particular one was said to have been personally owned by the
original creator.
If provenance is established then its future value is liable to be assured.
Hardly crazy.

2. The suggestion that objects only have worth in terms of their
actual physical characteristics, and that their history, rareness or
other ephemera is of no or of strictly limited relevance in
determining their worth is, as I know you know, not a majority opinion
worldwide. But, once you acknowledge that some things are worth more
"just because' where is it "reasonable" to draw the line, and who
says?

I still own my first slide rule. Solarwind may know what a slide rule
is, may well never have seen one and quite possibly couldn't use one
uninstructed. Commercially my slide rule is worth about $0.
You'd have to offer me a very significant amount to buy it.
What would you pay for it?
Is that craziness on my part?
(Maybe :-) ).
Looks similar to this but MUCH newer and no leather case.
cgi.ebay.com/Pickett-Eckel-Model-300-Sliderule-w-Leather-Case-/230480340041?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item35a9b2e449#ht_602wt_1138
The value at one stage WAS $0 but now it looks like rarity may have
pulled it back into the $1-$10 range.
Offered on eeebay 100 years from now it would probably fetch $1000 in
todays terms.

I own an Osborne 1 portable computer
You can buy them on ebay for far less than I'd sell you mine.
Do I have no right or logical ability to assign such a value to it?
Or my Zx81?
ALL the ZX81's on ebay at present are offered for far less than I
would accept for mine.

At what point does "craziness" start.
Assessment in terms of an individual;s net worth may be a better assessment.
But, there is always "The pearl of great price".

Much more could be said.
But as neither this or anything else has any prospect of actually
convincing :-) _ I'll quit here.


R

2010\05\28@110343 by John Gardner

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My babies...

http://www.sphere.bc.ca/test/slide4/183-post-partypak-2.jpg

Slide rules are a fickle market. Today's prices are depressed,
compared to 5 years ago.

Looking at ebay, the 10" is about the same, decent specimens
can be had for about what they cost new. 5" rules peaked about
5 years ago, "as-new" changing hands for as much as $150. Today
ebay offers one for $10, roughly 1/3rd what they cost new, 40 years
ago...

Perhaps the basements collectors spent the last 15 years filling
in with rules are starting to empty...  :)

2010\05\28@124024 by RussellMc

face picon face
BCCs: Gavin & Ross & John have one of the 2/83 Faber Castells, or had.
Ken will have similar. Martin may too. Rod ... .

> My babies...
>
> http://www.sphere.bc.ca/test/slide4/183-post-partypak-2.jpg
>

NOW look what you've done - don't you know it's 4am here !!! :-).
Quietly sneaks into store room next to bedroom ...

Retrieves Faber Castell Novo Duplex 2/83 sliderule in case.

Appears identical to this:


http://www.sphere.bc.ca/test/sliderules/5castell-2-83-b.jpg

http://www.sphere.bc.ca/test/sliderules/5castell-2-83-c.jpg

except that that one has the cheap strip bumpers at either end to rest
on the desktop, whereas mine had nice green full rubber caps. I say
"had" as one broke into pieces when I took said SR from its plastic
case. Whoops. Make that both have broken somewhat. Consistency of very
stale cheese with age.
Sliderule seems in good condition.

This looks somewhat like your larger one.
Log Log scales were an "advanced" feature.

This is not my original sliderule which I referred to previously. That
was a smaller Faber Castell purchased when I was at school. The larger
was was given by the then NZ Post Office to use at university. The
smaller felt nicer to use but the larger is somewhat more accurate and
had many more scales.

Using the Root-X scales gave an effective length of just on 500mm and
probably a resolution of 0.002 at the "1" end of the scale (1.000,
1.002, 1.004, ...) , and about 0.005 mid scale (3.000, 3.005,
3.010,...) , and about 0.01 at the top (9.00, 9.01, 9.02)
Hmm - 1:500, 1:600, 1:900 - I'm actually claiming that the actual
resolution gets better at the top even though the bottom is far far
more expanded due to the log scale. I guess that's really saying that
the true resolution is about the same throughout, but the gradations
make a difference how you can read it. For anyone enthused enough,
looking at the pictures will give a fair idea of how I base my
assessment.

So 1:50 to 1:1000 AND that was on the double length folded scale.
With such technology were wars fought, aircraft built and, even, early
ICBMs's and Moonships largely designed.  With the computers checking
the results that the slipsticks had first produced, in many cases.

The FC 2/83N here

             http://sliderule.mraiow.com/w/images/1/1a/Faber_Castell_2-83N_obverse.jpg

is slightly larger again and said by the FC enthusiasts to perhaps be
the finest SR ever made. (For some values of finest, no doubt).


              R

2010\05\28@125235 by Isaac Marino Bavaresco

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Em 28/5/2010 09:40, Electron escreveu:
> At 12.11 2010.05.28, you wrote:
>  
>>
>>    
>>> {Original Message removed}

2010\05\28@132042 by Michael Watterson

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RussellMc wrote:
> BCCs: Gavin & Ross & John have one of the 2/83 Faber Castells, or had.
> Ken will have similar. Martin may too. Rod ... .
>
>  
>> My babies...
>>
>> www.sphere.bc.ca/test/slide4/183-post-partypak-2.jpg
>>
>>    
>
> NOW look what you've done - don't you know it's 4am here !!! :-).
> Quietly sneaks into store room next to bedroom ...
>
> Retrieves Faber Castell Novo Duplex 2/83 sliderule in case.
>
>  
I had an Aristo maybe 12" in hard plastic case with LL scales..
similar
www.sphere.bc.ca/test/slide27/aristo-0968b.jpg
http://www.sphere.bc.ca/test/aristo.html

I lent it to someone doing night school and then I moved Country. I'd
not bother buying a replacement, but if I had it, I'd keep it.
As a fresh teenager I used R1155 set and No.19 Set. I was however nearly
tempted 3 years ago to buy a No.19 set. You can get parts to repair them
easier than for some 1980s computers.

For €2 I can get a scientific calculator that also has BIN/DEC/HEX/OCT.
It's nearly as cheap to buy a replacement as new batteries in some
shops. I can't see college students being nostalgic over their 1st
iPhone or calculator in 20 years. But you never know.

2010\05\28@141701 by John Gardner

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> NOW look what you've done...

:)

I have several FC rules, including a pristine 2/83N - Bamboo rules
spoil you, though. The slides move as if on air bearings, and stay
where you put them.

Both my FC rules have enough breakaway friction to be annoying
to use, in comparison, although the so-called Pythagorean scale
is useful enough that I miss not having it.

Too bad Hemmi did'nt make a rule with the expanded "R" scales,
and a "P" scale, in Bamboo...

Aristo made a rule with a double set of trig scales that I thought
would be the cat's meow for celestial navigation (an ornament in
my collection of obsolescent skills...)  but I never found one.

Back before ebay realized accessible archives would eventually
send them all to jail, I searched, and found two transactions, one
of which was this fellow, I believe...

http://sliderules.lovett.com/aristomultitrig0929var1/aristomultitrig0929var1pics.htm

Oh well. I suppose if I ran across one I'd soon be grousing about
plastic rules... Maybe I should build one  :)

2010\05\28@145704 by Walter Banks

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Vitaliy wrote:

> It went for $25,600 -- not bad. :)

I just gave a bunch of old personal computer memorabilia
to a couple computer museums. Very early ADAM (serial number 2)
Original IBM PC, Sinclair QL 68K computer that we finally opened
the box after 20+ years. A PDP11 that hadn't been powered up in
maybe 20 years.

Plus about 140 Bankers boxes of research notes and tradeshow
literature dating back to the original PC-76.

In the process of doing this it became clear that most of the
information from the early days personal computing has either
been lost or is now disappearing. Probably more important how
were choices made that brought the kind of computers and
instruction sets we now have. A small example of this was a
debate in the late 80's at a conference I attended was
"Is the a x86 instruction set going to be available by the
year 2000" Ten years later than the year 2000 I can still execute
code written for processors in the late 80's. That was one hell
of a design win for Intel.

A lot of the conversations I had a few weeks ago were with
folks who want to preserve a critical mass of this material
to see what happened when computers became personal property.

My first personal computer was an OSI that I build from
blank boards. This computer was always a work in progress,
in the end it had three processors, I wrote a OS for it at
one point and a bunch of us developed a 4 K memory board
based on 2102's that each of us used for whatever flavour
of home brew computer we had. It was powered by a surplus
power supply. It had a Xerox two hole (One motor two disks
common head stepper) 8 inch drive. I built a case by
spot welding a bunch of sheet steel together and spray
painting it with white enamel.  The front panel was
covered in black MacTac.  This was part of the "donation"
to one of the computer museums a few weeks ago. It was
powered up within the last 3 or 4 years.

The next real computer was the PDP11 all the while
accumulating a bunch of small processor development boards
and building a few different computers with my "own"
instructions sets. One them had a boolean instruction set
(One bit data was all it had) that ran about 10Mhz around
the 1976/1977 time frame.


For the truly addicted the thrill never leaves.

Regards,


Walter..
--
Walter Banks
Byte Craft Limited
http://www.bytecraft.com

2010\05\28@151840 by Walter Banks

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RussellMc wrote:

>
> I own an Osborne 1 portable computer
> You can buy them on ebay for far less than I'd sell you mine.
> Do I have no right or logical ability to assign such a value to it?
> Or my Zx81?
> ALL the ZX81's on ebay at present are offered for far less than I
> would accept for mine.
>

There come a point where much of the emotional attachment
is more in the memory of the hard work and satisfaction of
that era. Some of the stuff just doesn't really matter and
there is the eureka moment when it is not the way you remembered
it. For me it was opening the front door on the PDP-11 and
seeing the foam dust filter for the disk drive sifting down
in powder form. This relic from my past is not going to boot
again anytime soon.

Giving to museums I somehow didn't really throw it all away
so to speak. Still I kept some stuff from that time.

Walter..

2010\05\28@160123 by RussellMc

face picon face
> There come a point where much of the emotional attachment
> is more in the memory of the hard work and satisfaction of
> that era. Some of the stuff just doesn't really matter and
> there is the eureka moment when it is not the way you remembered
> it. For me it was opening the front door on the PDP-11 and
> seeing the foam dust filter for the disk drive sifting down
> in powder form. This relic from my past is not going to boot
> again anytime soon.

Just having the nice chunky flexible rubber end caps on my slide rule
turn to cheese consistency and die in my hands was a bit of a
traumatic moment :-).

I have misc bits and pieces in a "museum space" surrounded by cubic
meters of junk. Nothing much of value by most standards I suspect.
Some rotary switches from an rotary mechanical exchange (pre Strowger
'step-by-step'), RTL-DTL board and dsicrete functions with epoxy cased
button shaped transistors - maybe 6 per board, with real gold oj the
contacts, wire memory , core memories (several), keyboard encoder that
threads wires through cores to malke key codes , the odd klystron, a
dua beam tetrodeor few (QQE0...), probably a Geloso VFO in there
somewhere, scattered 807's and 1625's, D2 kit :-), some Philips pre
OC71 transistors (bought from an immigrant Dutchman), the APN1 got
sold, alas, ...? - must be time for another look.

             Russell

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