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Desc:At the time it was unbelievably fast
Category:Science & Technology, Educational
Tags:modern use of old technology, 300 baud, narrowband, modem, fine corinthian leather
Submitted:fluffy
Date:05/29/09
Views:2060
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Comment count is 21
bopeton
It's really not interesting that technology 45 years ago was a lot crappier or came in a wooden case.

What's interesting is that is still works fine. I can't imagine my iPod or cell phone working at all in 45 years.
PornocracyNow
well there's a different mindset now. you will never see craftsmanship into computer products like that today, because the industry has settled into a pattern of replacing obsolete technologies. at the beginning people were still operating with the idea that computer products, like alot of other products, should be built to last.

boner
1960's computer hardware was not made for consumers. Look at old TV's, portable radios, etc. from back then and plenty of it has broken down by now. Although, old telephones are built like tanks.

fluffy
Old telephones were also generally rented out by the phone company, so they had an incentive to make them last forever.

citrusmirakel
Also, your iPod cost a hundred dollars. A 300 baud modem manufactured in 1964 probably cost the 2009 equivalent of ,000.

(keep in mind I just pulled that figure from my own ass)

zatojones
cool
thirteen3seven
I watched eight and a half minutes of someone connect to the internet. Making me do that is most definitely worth five stars.

Also: that's an awesome piece of tech he has there.
glasseye
So cool.
Cube
It actually makes the text print out slowly, like in movie computers in the 80s. And 90s. And 00s.
Big Beef Burritos Supreme
60s and 70s spy movies with the telex machine and its associated noises suddenly make sense.

And the X Files, as usual, makes even less.

Repomancer
Totally freaking awesome.

All of you people are punks, but my earliest computer experiences were with acoustic-coupled modems at 110 baud. On teletypes. 300 baud on a video terminal? Luxury.

I dealt with punched cards, too, but let's not go there.

As has been observed, this was a pro rig, not consumer gear. It was meant to be durable and serviceable in ways that almost nothing is anymore. If that modem broke tomorrow, you could get out the screwdriver and soldering iron and have it working again in short order.

Factoid: "Baud" means "modulations per second," which at higher data rates differs from "bits per second" (bps) because one bit is encoded on the rising edge of a waveform and another on the trailing edge. A 2400 bps modem is 2400 baud, but a 56k bps modem is 32K baud.
Repomancer
Also: dude is being disingenuous when he says there's no digital circuitry in that box. Something is driving that RS-232 port, and it ain't analog. It may be a buttload of transistor pairs, but not having them all on one chip doesn't change its nature.

Mike Tyson?!
Yeah I was about to chime in about the "analog" function in that MODEM. How the fuck is it going to de-modulate back into that parallel port without going digital? Magic?

StanleyPain
This takes me back. No, I never owned a modem THIS old, but my baby steps into the online world were when 800 baud was the new, blazingly fast speed. When the 14.4s came out it was like things would never change and that would be the MOST AWESOMEST SPEED EVAR! I almost miss the ridiculous noise from those things.

And my first internet account ever used a Unix shell, so yeah....Lynx for me. Sometimes I still occasionally do an unconcious series of keyboard Lynx commands when I'm online.

fluffy
Mike Tyson!?, that's a serial port.

Repomancer, I'm pretty sure it is totally-analog. Keep in mind that the different voltage on the USB converter didn't work. It's using a VC oscillator, controlled directly by the voltage line on the RS-232 send pin for the modulation, and probably using a bandpass filter and a Schmidt trigger or the like for the demodulation. Those are all analog parts.

FWIW, I used to have in my collection of computer crap a thermal teletype with acoustic coupler (which had both 110 and 300 baud), and an APL keyboard. Unfortunately, my parents got rid of it when I moved to New York because they didn't appreciate old technology and I couldn't find any collector value to it. I told them I'd take it with me the next time I visited but they didn't care. :/

B. Weed
Saw this last night and was thinking of submitting it; good job, fluffy.
foopants
sweet
mcsancherson
SFW fetishes
THA SUGAH RAIN
Downloading porn must've taken days.
kingofthenothing
They had these magazines with pictures back then.

codehappy
I squealed with delight when the login screen came up.
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