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Reply 20 of 65, by Bendejo

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I was about to build my super gaming pc and had everything ready. Been away from pc gaming for about 7-8 years now so was looking forward to playing Cyberpunk 2077 on my decked out build. Long story short, i could never get my hands on one and refused to pay scalpers fee or get a 3090. So now I have a almost fully built PC that is sitting there, along with the OLED display i bought to use with the new cards.

I watch a lot of youtube so it was LGR building a 486 that got that itch scratching again. I already collect retro consoles, and was around for retro pc gaming. Our first family computer was a Pentium 200 mmx and I have fond memories of gaming in those times. Eventually I found Phils channel and now im building a SS7 PC.

Reply 21 of 65, by Almoststew1990

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My unconscious reason was my mum had just died and I sort of threw myself into retro gaming perhaps more than I would have otherwise done.

But the reason for building W98 and older PCs wasn't really nostalgia. My "best years" were at college and university and those games are generally available on GOG and Steam. I just wanted the challenge and to play old games that I missed as a kid!

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Reply 22 of 65, by Fujoshi-hime

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1) I can explore games I missed out on retro hardware instead of figuring out DOS box or what series of cracks or fan made patches are needed to get it running on Windows 10.
2) Some genres of games have largely faded as the the gaming industry increasingly focuses on big budget block buster AAA must sell 10 million units or everyone is fired sorta things. Weirder fun niches have died off or faded.
3) I can use 'not really period authentic, but still very compatible' hardware to run those games at high resolution and frame rate without needing what would have been $3000 in hardware back in that day. The 3.2ghz E5800 CPU in my Win9X machine cost I think $11. It runs a 128GB SATA SSD that cost $24.99, but for that hardware it is basically bottomless storage and it's faster than God.

Reply 23 of 65, by mothergoose729

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I consider myself something of a digital librarian. I collect games from all kinds of consoles and computers. It's fun to see how many different ways I can get everything to play, setup all nice and ready to go, one button pushed and off to gaming. I do emulation and the real thing. I don't discriminate. The joy I get out of it is first and foremost - getting it to work - and second I feel like I am capturing or exploring something in history. It's like gardening... in a way. It isn't that flowers are so pretty I want to spend hours tending to them, it is that there is a satisfaction from seeing your neat and order plots grow and flourish.

I don't have a single period of computing that I focus on. I play modern games and 80's booters. Atari 2600 and PlayStation 4. I am excited for the current generation of consoles to become defunct enough, and totally busted wide open by hacks and homebrew enough, to be worth cataloging too. Right now I am focused on retro computers, but I think I'll likely end up back on consoles pretty soon. After that it will be 80's micros and commodore computers I think. It never ends. There is always something new to explore.

Reply 24 of 65, by creepingnet

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I know I have a wall of text earlier, but I was dealing with a couple nasty aspects of social media and I kind of reminded me of another reason why I likely get into this stuff, and it's a big part of why I try to get all these old machines to do modern tasks.

See, I kind of hate the modern internet. I hate that for certain services and social media - usually the most popular ones - I need to give an e-mail address (Reddit), or my full name (Google, Facebook), or even more personal details I"m not that comfortable with having on these idiots servers that can be hacked, mismanaged, or just outright abused. Add to it that now almost every big page has a 90 page long list of rules, EULAs, and whatnot that everyone clicks "I Agree" to but never actually reads and in a way, I'm kind of fed up with the modern web.

I've been online in some capacity since the early 1990's and it seems that the biggest problem is people are trying to fix things that will never go away and could have been prevented in the first place if people did not just freely throw their personal information around like it's nothing. It used to be we made up ridiculous screen names to keep from being found out who we were and to make ourselves less of a target.

I also miss that there was a certain "bar of entry" of sorts. Not so much the financial one, but the technical one. It used to be you had to really want it, and you earned it - learning how to connect a modem, setup COM ports, setup IRQs, setup memory addresses, tuning and tweaking plaintext files for network subsystems like you're tuning your drag racer for the track. It kept a lot of idiots away and kept you a bit more in touch with what your system was actually doing in some respects.

There are days I go online and think "If I can't get this page to come up on a 486 DX4 with RetroZilla at least, then maybe it's not worth my time". That's a common sentiment I tend to hold as of late. Sometimes I wonder if it's just old-fogeyism settling in - or if I'm really legitimate in my concerns about the modern world. I just get something out of a simple webforum, BBS, or IRC that I don't get out of more modern channels.

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Reply 25 of 65, by Shreddoc

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Further to the above / in a similar vein :

I hate how inefficient and wasteful modern computing is.

The thought occurred to me the other day, as I sat watching a Progress Bar crawl forwards. One of the thousands of various Progress Bars we all sit wasting small portions of our lives in front of.

And I realised, that in the time the standard, massively-inefficient application took to complete what-should-have-been the simple task of parsing small data and managing a handful of files, the entire multi-terabyte hard disk could have been copied. Here I was, on a modern CPU whose instructions-per-second is literally measured in the bloody billions, yet somehow most modern programming is unable to carry out simple processes without spending actual, ridiculous, trillions of instruction-time on trivialities.

And wasting all our lives drop-by-drop in the process.

I think back to what we (and our generations) used to do with mere PCs, XTs, 286's, 486's. Basic coding, achieving clever efficiencies and stretching every resource to the fullest. Reducing and reducing and reducing every single process down to it's barest possible footprint, and user impact. And as I sit watching a petty nothing application take about 1000 Second Reality's worth of instruction-time to carry out it's own basic self-admin - one of the 100 trivial application timewastes of the day - I think boy haven't times changed...

Reply 26 of 65, by gerry

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creepingnet wrote on 2021-04-29, 14:01:

I also miss that there was a certain "bar of entry" of sorts. Not so much the financial one, but the technical one.

back then the online world was for the enthusiasts, around 1996 the 'masses' starting pouring in and that was fine for a while, then it all got dotcom bust silly but at the same time browsing became easier, broadband developed further, companies learned from their mistakes and got smarter, 'features' were taken advantage of, the masses preferences were noted, manipulated and responded to.

layer over layer piled up, pulled this way and that by vested commercial interests and we end up with what there is today, a vast vast network dominated by a handful of vast vast corporates geared towards 'the market'

like I said before it used to feel like 'ours' and then it became 'theirs'

Reply 27 of 65, by chinny22

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I'm not sure 'whos' it is!

Pre Win95/Internet if you weren't interested in computers they were glorified typewriters with a rather daunting interface.
Then came the Internet where everyone started wanting a computer, Win95 timed perfectly for this as it was much more user Intuitive. I guess this is when it started becoming theirs
But somewhere in the last 10 years lets say Win8 era , design took easy of use. Everyone knows and understands the start menu so lets hide hide it aka the god awful "charms bar" force you to google the shortcut key to minimise, put common tasks under sub sub menus.
Even decentralising with things like Office 365, before everything was kept on a mapped drive and phone and email was the method of communication.
Now I have to check email, teams, whats app or even just SMS messages.
All this annoys me no end and I'm IT literate! Can only imagine what the common man on the street with no interest in tech feels like. They just wanted to get a job done.

Reply 28 of 65, by brostenen

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My childhood and teenage years....

Don't eat stuff off a 15 year old never cleaned cpu cooler.
Those cakes make you sick....

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Reply 29 of 65, by 386SX

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As already more or less said above, I'd imagine personally it's all about the nostalgia aspect to temporary recreate moments of our past where things were easier to enjoy and live in. Now that somehow modern tech seems both boring and far from user-oriented as it was back then while much more business-oriented, only the retro tech seems to still have a sense until it will probably not be usable anymore itself, like many AM radios nowdays.
So it's not about the gaming aspect at least not necessary. It's about a tech I feel like "I can understand" and its limit.
My initial videogaming experience began back in the middle/late 80's and the x86 one in the early 90's and I think I was enough lucky to have lived the best years of both the 2D and 3D and technological changes even if sometimes I think maybe the previous decades might have been even better for the analog tech, radio, initial computers and everything related like music, eletronic etc.

Reply 30 of 65, by 386SX

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chinny22 wrote on 2021-04-30, 10:16:

Can only imagine what the common man on the street with no interest in tech feels like. They just wanted to get a job done.

I suppose modern tech is all oriented to the common people in fact when every new tech is released, many people seems accepting everything like "wow, it's good cause it's new". Looks like many didn't remember the 90's tech to see things in prospective and compare the tech, when and if things are better or not. But as said, since a decade ago I also had the feeling things in tech changed deeply in their concept. Smartphones were not what they were used to be and computers had to run to follow the same "ideas" in some way. Software as decentralized services, hardware integration and few players only in the market. Optimization is a long forgotten word, freeware and shareware concept too, games seems to become online services themself. I don't feel this tech era to be compatible with my own view of how should have been, so I prefer to have retro hardware even for everydays modern usage. Sometimes it's funny to think that a well built Pentium 4 can do most of the tasks common people might need a digital device for.

Reply 31 of 65, by creepingnet

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386SX wrote on 2021-05-01, 14:43:
chinny22 wrote on 2021-04-30, 10:16:

Can only imagine what the common man on the street with no interest in tech feels like. They just wanted to get a job done.

I suppose modern tech is all oriented to the common people in fact when every new tech is released, many people seems accepting everything like "wow, it's good cause it's new". Looks like many didn't remember the 90's tech to see things in prospective and compare the tech, when and if things are better or not. But as said, since a decade ago I also had the feeling things in tech changed deeply in their concept. Smartphones were not what they were used to be and computers had to run to follow the same "ideas" in some way. Software as decentralized services, hardware integration and few players only in the market. Optimization is a long forgotten word, freeware and shareware concept too, games seems to become online services themself. I don't feel this tech era to be compatible with my own view of how should have been, so I prefer to have retro hardware even for everydays modern usage. Sometimes it's funny to think that a well built Pentium 4 can do most of the tasks common people might need a digital device for.

I think a lot of it is most people assume if they complain enough about a product the company is going to fix it. It seems to me these days companies don't really care if their products work as planned or not anymore. And if they do, it's only a matter of time before some other corporate interest "invests" in their product and forces them to bundle a shareware product nobody wants or needs with it, or the company decides to change the features or functionality in some way that breaks what made the software great to begin with. SAAS magnifies all this because now you can't just skip updates or be offline and expect everything to work as planned.

The reasons may be different from person to person but they all expect things to be fixed but they never get fixed, or if they do, it breaks something else. Sadly, it seems people also vote with their wallet less today than ever before. Because the alternatives are shady, incompatible, or require more technical skill than your regular person can muster. So people stick with the mainstream releases of everything and upgrade when asked hoping it'll get better, and then when it does not, it's just another normal release cycle - news articles on what's wrong with the product, forums filled with repeat questions for the same issues, and a user base that just shrugs and goes "it is what it is".

It used to be computers were tools to get a job done, now they're like any other consumer electronic device - a yardstick by which you are judged, a status symbol, a sign of how technologically skilled or advanced you are. If you're not running "the latest and the greatest" people in the rat race will chide you for it until you "get with the times" - these people are not the actual experts, the actual expert will get on your case for being an "early adopter".

Add on top of it that your non-technical user does about 90% of everything on their cellphone so the computer is foreign to them, which is causing a backslide in computer literacy from what I can tell. People have no problem doing 10000 things on their phone swiping their finger around, but put them on a full sized computer with a keyboard and mouse and they seem like the time your non-technical dad bought an XT Clone in 1985 and was hunting and pecking while reading the MS-DOS user's guide.

~The Creeping Network~
My Website - https://sites.google.com/site/thecreepingnetwork/home
My Youtube Channel - https://www.youtube.com/creepingnet

Reply 32 of 65, by Jasin Natael

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Shreddoc wrote on 2021-04-16, 21:55:
A lot of us have touched on personal nostalgia, which is of course one of (if not the) primary motivations. […]
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A lot of us have touched on personal nostalgia, which is of course one of (if not the) primary motivations.

---

Thinking deeper about that reasoning, I think there may be a sub-element of that : namely, The Re-do, The Do-over.

That is something we cannot do with our own lives. We cannot literally take ourselves back in time, to have a second chance at periods of our lives, to re-experience our youths but with the added knowledge and guidance of additional decades of life. We can't go back and build ourselves the in-hindsight perfect career, or un-do the big mistakes we might have made in our younger years.

But with COMPUTERS, we can do that, to a fair degree. And that, I think, is one underlying factor of the overarching nostalgia umbrella. The do-over : crucially, driven by the full power of the mind and person you've evolved into during the decades since the original.

---

The fact that computers, moreso than most other things, are a device designed to actively manipulate our main sensory inputs (sight, hearing, tactile) is another factor which makes the experience - and the memories - so deep and visceral for those of us with this passion.

Absolutely. 100% this.

I have also done a lot of the same with guitars that I used to own and lost/sold/were stolen for whatever reason. It's reliving the past in a way.

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Reply 33 of 65, by creepingnet

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Jasin Natael wrote on 2021-05-03, 17:00:
Shreddoc wrote on 2021-04-16, 21:55:
A lot of us have touched on personal nostalgia, which is of course one of (if not the) primary motivations. […]
Show full quote

A lot of us have touched on personal nostalgia, which is of course one of (if not the) primary motivations.

---

Thinking deeper about that reasoning, I think there may be a sub-element of that : namely, The Re-do, The Do-over.

That is something we cannot do with our own lives. We cannot literally take ourselves back in time, to have a second chance at periods of our lives, to re-experience our youths but with the added knowledge and guidance of additional decades of life. We can't go back and build ourselves the in-hindsight perfect career, or un-do the big mistakes we might have made in our younger years.

But with COMPUTERS, we can do that, to a fair degree. And that, I think, is one underlying factor of the overarching nostalgia umbrella. The do-over : crucially, driven by the full power of the mind and person you've evolved into during the decades since the original.

---

The fact that computers, moreso than most other things, are a device designed to actively manipulate our main sensory inputs (sight, hearing, tactile) is another factor which makes the experience - and the memories - so deep and visceral for those of us with this passion.

Absolutely. 100% this.

I have also done a lot of the same with guitars that I used to own and lost/sold/were stolen for whatever reason. It's reliving the past in a way.

I'm glad I held onto my guitars. Honestly I'm spending more in the vintage computer realm because I consider my "collection" of guitars "done" for the most part. About the only guitar related thing I've been mucking with recently is a Line6 HD500 effects board that I picked up to record on YouTube with (trying to get back to making some guitar videos as well) - 90% of what I've been doing with the LIne6 is remaking patches I used during the 2000's when I used to glitch-out multiFX units to get some pretty cool and very interesting yet musical sounds - and then improve on them and take them forward, not much unlike what I do with old PC hardware really.

And there's nostalgia with that for me as well. I spent all of highschool playing guitar in my bedroom before I had a computer to mess with, building and modding guitars for myself and schoolmates. Sometimes I kind of miss those simpler days of jamming with old 80's records, or later when I did that while at the helm of some ancient IBM Compatible waiting for a 27MB file to download over 56K Dial-up at 3 a.m. on a Tuesday after work.

~The Creeping Network~
My Website - https://sites.google.com/site/thecreepingnetwork/home
My Youtube Channel - https://www.youtube.com/creepingnet

Reply 34 of 65, by 386SX

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creepingnet wrote on 2021-05-03, 15:41:
.... […]
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....

The reasons may be different from person to person but they all expect things to be fixed but they never get fixed, or if they do, it breaks something else. Sadly, it seems people also vote with their wallet less today than ever before. Because the alternatives are shady, incompatible, or require more technical skill than your regular person can muster. So people stick with the mainstream releases of everything and upgrade when asked hoping it'll get better, and then when it does not, it's just another normal release cycle - news articles on what's wrong with the product, forums filled with repeat questions for the same issues, and a user base that just shrugs and goes "it is what it is".

It used to be computers were tools to get a job done, now they're like any other consumer electronic device - a yardstick by which you are judged, a status symbol, a sign of how technologically skilled or advanced you are. If you're not running "the latest and the greatest" people in the rat race will chide you for it until you "get with the times" - these people are not the actual experts, the actual expert will get on your case for being an "early adopter".

Add on top of it that your non-technical user does about 90% of everything on their cellphone so the computer is foreign to them, which is causing a backslide in computer literacy from what I can tell. People have no problem doing 10000 things on their phone swiping their finger around, but put them on a full sized computer with a keyboard and mouse and they seem like the time your non-technical dad bought an XT Clone in 1985 and was hunting and pecking while reading the MS-DOS user's guide.

Also when happens to talk to other people or in other forums about this point of view, it looks like most wouldn't accept anything different than the modern tech situation while at the same time can't seems to see how digital needs are basically the same of the late 90's. Some time ago in another forum discussion I was saying that if things would be ultra optimized, reduced in complexity and expectations etc.. a "80386 computer would be enough" still nowdays for most of the task; of course it's more complex than that but it was interesting to see most people replied defending the modern tech, saying that was absurd to think such old computers to do modern tasks. But isn't it true? For the modern common people digital needs, most of the applications and the hardware ALREADY existed in the 90's. Chat real time applications already existed, the web already existed and didn't need hundreds megabytes of javascript/ads/whatever loading.. it was just text and few images everything loaded fast on a 56K V90 modem.
Entire o.s. were possible into single CD or Floppies, productivity applications too. I did the example of an Autocad version of the middle 90's and it was installable with 20 floppies or similar and we used it in labs to render mechanical gouraud shaded geometries. 2000's Photoshop app had features I didn't found on other similar modern apps that weight 100 times that size. Some of the common people think like only nowdays hw and sw can do all they need for but there's no difference in common tasks compared to 2o or 30 years ago imho.

Reply 35 of 65, by gerry

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386SX wrote on 2021-05-04, 10:26:

Also when happens to talk to other people or in other forums about this point of view, it looks like most wouldn't accept anything different than the modern tech situation while at the same time can't seems to see how digital needs are basically the same of the late 90's. Some time ago in another forum discussion I was saying that if things would be ultra optimized, reduced in complexity and expectations etc.. a "80386 computer would be enough" still nowdays for most of the task; of course it's more complex than that but it was interesting to see most people replied defending the modern tech, saying that was absurd to think such old computers to do modern tasks. But isn't it true? For the modern common people digital needs, most of the applications and the hardware ALREADY existed in the 90's. Chat real time applications already existed, the web already existed and didn't need hundreds megabytes of javascript/ads/whatever loading.. it was just text and few images everything loaded fast on a 56K V90 modem.
Entire o.s. were possible into single CD or Floppies, productivity applications too. I did the example of an Autocad version of the middle 90's and it was installable with 20 floppies or similar and we used it in labs to render mechanical gouraud shaded geometries. 2000's Photoshop app had features I didn't found on other similar modern apps that weight 100 times that size. Some of the common people think like only nowdays hw and sw can do all they need for but there's no difference in common tasks compared to 2o or 30 years ago imho.

in one sense people often feel the need to defend 'modern' as if they are part of it, their self identity is wrapped up in being part of 'now'. Especially when young anything old is considered bad automatically (not always of course)

but they are also right in the sense that tech from that era cannot support all the stuff they consider normal - they consider that stuff to be an indivisible part of the experience. Sure they might grasp that one can email or have an online experience with text only, but they correctly identify (without these words perhaps) that "doing things the way we do things takes modern tech". It's a shame they didn't imagine or envision an alternative, maybe the shortcomings of forums more than theirs

I'd agree for lots of applications and their relatively smaller growth in terms of features over the last 20 years - but applications are also more and more online now and so the idea of having a desktop PC to do x is not really the way things are done anymore. also, for some things like encoding, the more powerful processing the better

there are some things, like encryption, that are better done on more powerful systems in any case, even without all the other stuff

Reply 36 of 65, by appiah4

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nemo1217 wrote on 2021-04-13, 06:25:

Sometimes I also think it's because that was a golden age for people in my country. Nowadays people hate each other due to different political values. People struggle in a world with fading hope. In late 90s and early 2000s, economy was growing fast, and people had high hope for the future, and they generally don't hate each other.

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Reply 37 of 65, by Joseph_Joestar

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Reliving my childhood I guess.

Also, as someone else previously mentioned, it's nice being able to play Win9x era games without worrying about various fan hacks and unofficial patches that are needed if you want to run them on a modern OS.

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Reply 38 of 65, by 386SX

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gerry wrote on 2021-05-04, 10:55:
in one sense people often feel the need to defend 'modern' as if they are part of it, their self identity is wrapped up in bein […]
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in one sense people often feel the need to defend 'modern' as if they are part of it, their self identity is wrapped up in being part of 'now'. Especially when young anything old is considered bad automatically (not always of course)

but they are also right in the sense that tech from that era cannot support all the stuff they consider normal - they consider that stuff to be an indivisible part of the experience. Sure they might grasp that one can email or have an online experience with text only, but they correctly identify (without these words perhaps) that "doing things the way we do things takes modern tech". It's a shame they didn't imagine or envision an alternative, maybe the shortcomings of forums more than theirs

I'd agree for lots of applications and their relatively smaller growth in terms of features over the last 20 years - but applications are also more and more online now and so the idea of having a desktop PC to do x is not really the way things are done anymore. also, for some things like encoding, the more powerful processing the better

there are some things, like encryption, that are better done on more powerful systems in any case, even without all the other stuff

Also seems like there's a lack of seeing things in prospective as said. To be able to compare old tech benefits vs the modern ones. I see people spending an entire month money on a single phone that might fall down and break any moment, like buying a 80286 in the 1984 and using it as a chair.. Once things had to last! I had an old 70's tv in the early 80's at home and it lasted until '98, only repaired some times by ourself with its datasheet. One thing is an upgrade another thing is to change entirely without a real reason.

About the processing power it sure is important for specific tasks but is it for the common ones? A random complex homepage might still make modern cpu suffers more than a 3DMark did in the 2000 for those old CPU/GPU. And most of the time there's basically few text on every pages and most is smooth animations webgl jscripts logics, just to look "modern" more than useful.
I still prefers the old text-only pages that at least gave informations with text. It's like buying a book without text nowdays..
Antivirus weight hundreds of megabytes, even a free PDF reader nowdays is a "complete suite" of who knows what to weight so much when if I use an old 2002 pdf reader the same files are readable on those softwares.
About the encryption also it's not really a benefit, most hardware and software has continuous updates until a certain point where things are supposed to be changed cause the latest vulnerability or wherever on drivers, sw, dependencies, cpu mitigations... one thing should be the security for companies another thing is for the common user where I suppose the race for the best security is just as pointless as the race for the best performance when a computer might ask for 1000 watts to get there.

Reply 39 of 65, by Intel486dx33

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Personally, I just miss the big computer stores. Shopping for components and software.
Building computers and running the software.

The entire experience is gone today in America.

People were optimistic about the future of America back then.

Today I feel people are depressed and not so optimistic about the future of the world.