_ __ | |__ | | ___ __ _
| '_ \| '_ \| |/ _ \ / _` |
| |_) | | | | | (_) | (_| |
| .__/|_| |_|_|\___/ \__, |
|_| ...2017-12-25 |___/
Merry winter solstice
(Whenver it was, I think the 21st.. matters not).
The reason I'm writing a blog now, has nothing to do with the season.
The reason was that somebody put a table of input-latency measurements online
and it's really interesting and depressing.
It basically shows that latency is increasing, the apple2 had quicker "from key
to screen" response than a 4 ghz i7. I'm aware of the technical reasons, and
appreciate the difficulty in amending this, but it nevertheless got me thinking
about something else, that is somehow related, maybe.
The table is available on the WWW: https://danluu.com/input-lag/
If you're of a certain age, you remember a time where the ability to comprehend
the finer details of the operations of your computer-machine was fully within
your grasp, you might not have fully exploited that, but your interactions with
the machine were inherently more intimate as more knowledge was required of you
to make it perform. I think a lot of people long for that time, when they felt
like, if they really gave it their all, they'd have a chance to get into the
machine, to understand it, to know what _computing_ was really about. I think
that is one reason for nostalgia in some of the more technically-minded of us.
Let's be honest, the field is moving too fast for us to be acutely aware of all
that happens, and technology moves at such a pace that, during the lag between
a new idea reaching us, us comprehending and beginnign to use it, that idea may
have been already replaced and obsolete. I think some of the appeal of the old
computers, is this sense, that you're standing at the peak of the mountain,
looking out into the future void. It lends a sense of the pioneer, it opens
up for the imagination. It tickles the imagination in a different way to stand
at the zenith of technological achievement in a different way.
"Just imagine if I could make my _COMPUTER_ turn on the coffee maker in the
morning!" or "Just imagine if I could make a searchable database of all my
friends and families phone numbers and addresses", well, these are solved
problems, your coffee maker can turn itself on, and there's an app for that.
So you just don't get to dream so small.
That might be some of the appeal of retro computing, forgetting, for a moment
that many of those easy trains have gone, and pretending that there's still
a throve of new exciting (and simple enough) things that _you_ can make your
computer do, that's never been done before.
Keep dreaming, no matter how small :)