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When PC became soulless for you?

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First post, by songo

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Back in the day, in 90's, Amiga 'elitists' considered IBM compatibiles inferior machines that lacked soul. Here, in Poland, they even called PC 'clones' and their users 'clonards'.

I didn't understand such concepts but it changed once I felt myself similar thing at some point. For me, it's started with Windows XP era. No DOS and its legacy, computers became ubiquitous, graphics whore arm race took ridiculous shape, RTS genre died, FPS was infected with WWII Call of Duty crap, fighting games and other arcade genres migrated fully to consoles... Magical machines became sad, gray boxes for casuals and vicious MMO addicts. It's comparable to what modern Android gaming is now and I hate it as well.

Guys, what's borderline for you? Or maybe you are still excited with new computers and the charm is still here?

Reply 1 of 110, by Errius

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Well for the longest time PCs were office equipment, like typewriters and fax machines. PC games were a gimmick, not a serious activity. This began to change in the 1990s, but the stigma persisted a long time. (I received much mockery in school for having a PC instead of a 'cool' machine like the Amiga.)

“I like to dissect PCs. Don't you know I'm utterly insane?"

Reply 2 of 110, by DosFreak

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Computers are inanimate objects. People are ignorant and always will be.
I've been using computers since I was six and the only computers I've ever looked down on were Apple machines but not because of the hardware (for the most part) but because of the Apple mindset with their marketing and OS (OSX and macOS) design which has only become worse over time.
For me the PC will be dead (at least new machines) once it is no longer a "Personal Computer" which has slowly been occurring for a while now. It isn't there yet but all it takes is for small changes to be taken, for people getting used to those changes and before they realize it they don't own a "PC" any more and they don't care.
So for computing devices that are "PC" I'm still happy to use them. For those that aren't I stay far away.

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Last edited by DosFreak on 2022-07-10, 18:51. Edited 8 times in total.

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Reply 4 of 110, by j^aws

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songo wrote on 2022-07-10, 18:10:

...
Guys, what's borderline for you? Or maybe you are still excited with new computers and the charm is still here?

The 'PC' was never soulless. Biggest thing to happen to the original IBM PC standard was the cloning of it by Compaq et al that opened up a flexible 'open' standard for its hardware. It has survived multiple proprietary standards over the years from Atari, Commodore, Acorn, Apple and others. Acorn, with its RISC ARM architecture still survives in some form in the mobile and embedded space.

What was 'soulless' were certain operating systems that were popular on the PC architecture that were behind the curve compared to their peers. That became 'good enough' with 3D APIs with Win95 onwards.

Reply 5 of 110, by Miphee

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As soon as I stopped gaming seriously. From that point I refused to spend money on new rigs every time some hotshot game came out. I got so disinterested that I got my current PC from e-waste. I'd rather spend my money on retro stuff than another office junk.

Reply 6 of 110, by Jo22

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Hm. From the 2010s onwards, with the start of Windows 8 I suppose ? When UEFI Secure Boot/TPM became the norm and traditional BIOS use declined ?
Since the ~2010s, PCs look all the same to me. Black/Silver, Blue LEDs.. They look like big smartphones. Bleak, soulless (no personality). Nothing new, no innovations anymore. No hi-res E-Ink screens, no holograms, no gesture control, no cyber gloves, nothing. 😒

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

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Reply 7 of 110, by RandomStranger

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Never, since they never had souls in the first place. What changed is that at some point I lost most of my passion for modern mainstream (AAA) games and those are what drive gamers for more modern PCs. As for when that happened, some time around 10-ish years ago when games seriously started to turn into online services instead of products optionally with online bonuses. Around that's when this insanely repulsive flat design trend started. Though it goes past PC to everything with an on-screen UI.

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Reply 9 of 110, by carlostex

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songo wrote on 2022-07-10, 18:10:

Back in the day, in 90's, Amiga 'elitists' considered IBM compatibiles inferior machines that lacked soul. Here, in Poland, they even called PC 'clones' and their users 'clonards'.

Amiga fanatics can be annoying as fuck. Let's face it, the Amiga was a multimedia PC ahead of its time. Great capabilities. But with time the PC's just took over. And that's it. When Amiga fanatics say the Monkey Island soundtrack is superior to the PC's MT-32 version that's just being silly. Or the Dune soundtrack being superior on the Amiga vs AdLib Gold. Its just delusional. That's all i have to say about this.

Reply 11 of 110, by subhuman@xgtx

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It's still got some of its identity and there's still the same kind of elitist people who look down on others who have cheaper systems. It does depend on what you make out of it, though. If we're talking about a generic tempered glass case with the greatest and latest RTX card, with a big load of rgb rainbow and " pro gaming" aesthetics splattered all over it, then we can agree it's becoming a kind of expensive, glorified toy.

I was a die hard desktop user until quite recently, when I realised I wasn't really enjoying AAA games, didn't need uber specs and was getting tired of the same clunky, unpolished and cumbersome Windows experience. Spending money on expensive hardware for the same kind of experience I had been exposed to for the past 12 years.

Graphics cards and sockets come and go and it all feels more of the same recipe. NVIDIA and AMD selling mid-end graphic cards for more than what a used car sells for in the US. Wasn't cutting it for me anymore.

I moved to a 8/8/16/1tb Macbook Air M1 past year and for a day to day system I could hardly look back. I mostly game on my old consoles (PS1, PS2, SNES, Saturn) and keep the occasional win95/dos gaming session for the old P1 mmx and P3 rigs.

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Reply 12 of 110, by imi

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never

hardware is still fun, while sure not as diverse and fast paced as in the 90s the technology is still exciting and playing around with hardware is fun.

the thing that became soulless is the software.
operating systems that don't do their jobs but instead try to dictate what you can or can't do with your property and games that purely exist to extract as much money out of you as possible.

Reply 14 of 110, by imi

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leileilol wrote on 2022-07-10, 23:05:

"The way it's meant to be played"

heh, I remember I replaced the nvidia texture in games with an ATi logo when I bought my Radeon 9500 Pro so the animation was a big red ATi logo with "The way it's meant to be played" instead 😁

Reply 16 of 110, by twiz11

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I became utterly depressed with how I no longer find PC experimentation fun, no dumpster diving anymore because no pcs out laying by the road. Ever since Dosbox/GNU/Linux things just work and that irritates me. I am no longer needed, I am too old since the internet made me obsolete

I am I

Reply 17 of 110, by darry

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The fun part has shifted to SBCs like the Raspberry and similar, IMHO . Additionally, even modern PCs can run Linux very well.

Linux works, but
a) nothing is perfect (thankfully, as many of us, myself included, still need to earn a living)
b) Linux leaves the door open to plenty of experimentation and fun .

I started using Linux more seriously about 16ish years ago and really got into it for professional reasons about 3 years later (still learning).

I still use DOS for fun, but I also run Linux on VMs, Raspberry Pis and modern hardware in my leisure activities. If anything, I feel like I am getting a taste of what experiencing the microcomputer revolution might have been like in the 80s (I was too young and poor then), and it tastes very good to me.

The world may suck these days, for many reasons, but the above is not one of them, IMHO .

Reply 18 of 110, by AppleSauce

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PC's were never supposed to have a "soul" they are utilitarian, flexible and reliable modular workhorses that get the job done and imo are better kept that way ,

the only real connection i would ever feel towards a pc would be because I built it myself and made it my own which gives me a bit of pride.

Honestly the mentality of a pc user is totally different to people who prefer other more propietary platforms.

If you want something with an identity get a mac or an atari st.

Reply 19 of 110, by imi

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AppleSauce wrote on 2022-07-11, 03:23:

PC's were never supposed to have a "soul" they are utilitarian, flexible and reliable modular workhorses that get the job done and imo are better kept that way

what a bleak view on things...
good thing then that there's people like us that gave them a soul.

and if theres any computer less soulless that I can think of today it's modern macs, that deprive you of all individuality or pride of accomplishment of having built something yourself and prevent you of even trying to put any soul into them by being completely locked down ecosystems nowadays.

old macs were slightly different in that regard, when you could still get 3rd party upgrades at least and tinker around with them, but for the last what, 10-15? years at least all that went away.
normal PCs on the other hand evolved from the "utilitarian" beige boxes as you say into a means of self expression.

I can't feel like that's nothing more but a troll comment.