Tech 10 Years Ago...

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So I'm sitting here at my dad's house, and I came across an old 1998 Guinness Book of World Records. I quickly turned to the technology section of the book, and couldn't help but laugh at what I found. Look how far we've come:

Fastest Computer

1998 - the fastest supercomputer could reach 16 gigaflops (gigaflop = 1 billion floating point operations per second)

Today, the cell processor inside the Playstation 3 can reach 218 Gigaflops. Some of the top-ranking machines can hit 360 teraflops

Fastest Chip

1998 - the fastest microprocessor ran at 300 MHz

Today, everyday processors have multiple cores and can be clocked well over 4 GHz.

Supercomputer Speed Record

1998 - The world's fastest supercomputer reached 328 gigaflops using 6768 processors running in parallel.

Comparison today? See the first example.

Highest Capacity Hard Drive

1998 - The largest hard drive had a capacity of 23.4 gigabytes.

Today, Hitachi ships 1 Terabyte hard drives for about $400.

People Connected to the Internet

1998- Roughly 9,472,000 people were connected to the internet. (I think this is a big underestimate however)

Today, over 1.25 billion people are said to have internet connectivity.

Largest ISP

1998 - America Online was the largest ISP with over 8 million subscribers.

Now - At&t is the largest ISP with about 18 million subscribers, Comcast has 13 million, and AOL is in third with about 10 million.

Largest Memory Chip

1998 - NEC developed a 4-gigabyte memory chip device.

In 2002, the US government purchased a 2.5 TB RAM disk.

Largest PC manufacturer

1998 - Compaq was the biggest thriving manufacturer of PCs.

Today, anyone heard of Dell? Oh yeah, HP bought Compaq in 2002.

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In 1997 I had a Gateway 2000 P150, 32MB of RAM, 28K modem running Win95. In 1998 I upgraded it with a P166, 64MB of total RAM, 33K Sportster Fax modem and Win98. In 1999 I upgraded to Win98SE and started overclocking it. It died in early 2001. I then built my Slot A AMD Athlon T-Bird 750MHz OCed to 1GHz, 512MB of RAM. 2001 is also the year I switched to Alltel DSL from Alltel dial-up. It was day and night between those two PCs.

The real power house that I have is a Mac Portable Model 5120 made in 1989.


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In 2000, my family got a Gateway with an 800MHz PIII with 64MB of RAM (later upgraded to 128, then 512), an nVidia Vanta Riva TNT2 (later upgraded to a GeForce2 MX200 then a GeForce2 MX400). I built a new rig in 2005 with an Athlon XP 3000+, 512MB of RAM (later upgraded to 1GB), and a GeForce FX5700 Ultra (later upgraded to a GeForce 6600GT). Man that was an insane difference.

After that I went to an Athlon 64 3500+, 1GB of RAM, and a GeForce 7600GT (later added a second 7600GT for SLI). And it was a pretty god difference from the previous system.

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I'ed dig out my TI994/A out of the garage. But there are a couple of the games I bought I never could get past the first part on. And If I got started again...... I'ed have to just down right smash the dumb game..... LOL

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from this (Gateway):


my mom still uses it to play Mega Solitaire on.

to the Sidewinder (First self built computer):


then to my Xplorer:


and then my newest rig will reside in this case:


HUGE 200mm fan on top and 2 120mm fans on front and 1 120mm in the rear


new rig planned to be:

Athlon X2 5600+, 2GB DD2 800 RAM, GeForce 8800GT or 8800GTS (G92)

so my newest rig will be an ever bigger step up than the last I think. It's gonna be great.

Edited by Honda_Boy
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bought my first machine in 1987...Motorola AT..20MB hard drive..i think it had 32kb of ram...really slow modem...(but got us connected..)..dos 3.something...paid over 2 grand from QVC..that machine was still running kid games in 1998.. B)

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I am really a computer newbie. I bought and used my first computer in December of 2002. It was a 2.0 celeron system with 256mbs of Ram running Windows XP. About 3 or 4 months later I installed linux(redhat 8) on it(dual boot). Today I fix computers for a living.

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well so much for my home made rig

after reading this thread

unless you can make your own

or get bargains

compts are a rich mans world

al those gega whos and gega watcha callits

i still post on the same board as youall

i made my first compt from the days of techtv

and it sure was cheap

all second hand parts

with win 95

ime probably

just as poor today

as i was then

i feel out of place on a board like this


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I forgot to mention the PC before the Gateway. It was made by a local builder (Columbia Data Systems) and it had a 200Mhz Cyrix Processor (worst ever) with 32MB of RAM, some Diamond video card and Windows 95.

Of course, I've had a bunch of others but these were all my main computers.

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i feel out of place on a board like this


Marty, believe me I'm not rich by any stretch. I buy my Mac's because I got lucky with Apple stock. Back when Steve Jobs announced the iPod I bought $500 worth of Apple stock at just under $10 a share with my income tax return money. I sell the stock to buy my Macs. Next month I sell some more for a new Macbook and that leaves me with just 5 shares left.

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... i feel out of place on a board like this


You're not alone. These guys are describing their FIRST machines and everybody's chuckling about how weak and backwards they were, but some of their first machines have better specs than the one I'm using now! And this is my third system! :lol:

Started with some Commodore dead-end system (DOS, Windows hadn't come out yet), then a 386SX clone (Windows 2.x), now this one (with Windows 98SE).

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Adding another "you're not alone"!

My "rig" (ha! I called it a rig! :D) is a $299 Dell Celeron, not a gamer so OK by me! And Marty, I so admire you taking these older machines and getting them to work--keeps them outta the landfills and puts them in good hands. I salute you, sir! Bravo!

We're not poor, we're THRIFTY! I've always said even if I win the Lottery, I'll have my maid :) hang the laundry outside; not only for the environment but because it smells so good, especially in Spring when the violets are scenting the air....


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:lol: ...

I still have my: Franklin Ace, Osborne 1, Laser 128's (2?), Mac pluses (2), Mac IIcx, Mac Centris 650, Mac Perforna 430, 2 0r 3 Win 3.1 boxes, and maybe a couple other old Mac and PC's still kicking around here in my "office". (My wife hates my pack-rat ways. <_< )

The first OS I learned to use was CP/M back in the early '80's (I still have some CP/M manuals squirreled away ! :lol: .

I now have an XP box that needs to be set up :Beta2a: (and another to repair [my wife's XP mobo fried]... but she's on-line on an older Mac laptop right now... so she's cool B) ).

* All my boxes have been hand-me-downs or bargain basement cast-offs, with the only exception(s) of my eMachines eMonster 700k (WIN 98SE) which I bought (and is my primary box at the time [for the last 7-8 years] instead of the Windows ME stuff peddled at the time. [[edit: ... and one of the Laser 128's which I bought from Sears back in '89 ]]

Edited by bobbynichols
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