Awesome Site of the Week: Obsolete Technology Website
Welcome to the second installment of the First Arkansas News Awesome Site of the Week series. As the name implies, the goal here is to point out some great sites out there with which you might not be familiar but should be. No, you’ll not find any massively popular sites that everyone knows about, but you’ll find some that are fantastic and may have flown under the radar a bit. Oh, and we’ll post information about a new site every week (of course). Probably on Mondays, but don’t hold us to that.
Bear in mind that you can view all sites that have been certified awesome by First Arkansas News by simply clicking on the very obvious graphic located in this article. Clicking here will take you to the series, too. Up to you, ace.
the Awesome Site of the Week this time around is a fantastic resource called the Obsolete Technology Website (OldComputers.net). For those of us who well remember a time when the idea of owning a computer was more than a bit novel, this site serves as both an historical document and a stroll down memory lane. The site is mighty useful for those looking to do just a bit of research or try to answer some questions — how did computers evolve into what they are today and what were some of the more significant systems from the past? There are around 100 computers covered on the site that were made from 1970 through 1973 (to be fair, you’ll not find any in-depth reviews for computers made before 1975, the year the MITS Altair 8800 hit the market).
The reviews are short, punchy and surprisingly comprehensive. I was able to find plenty of information about three old computers I owned and used regularly — the Apple 2, IBM-PC and TRS-80 Color Computer (CoCo). The site doesn’t pretend to be exhaustive — it provides an overview of each computer and points visitors to more in depth resources on the Internet should they want to learn more about various computers. What it does provide, however, is a great synopsis of each computer, including its place in history, original prices, a timeline listing significant upgrades and how long the computer was manufactured and — in some cases — links to software archives for various computers (clearly, the authors have done their homework so as to avoid violating copyrights).
Ah, but there’s more. There’s a marketplace in which people sell vintage computers and an archive of old ads which are almost always a hoot. Make sure to check out the “25 things you never new about old computers” section for some random facts that are surprisingly enlightening — you’ll learn about Apple’s first flop, the cheapest computer sold during the era, who made the first truly portable computer, etc.
If you’re doing some research into those great computers of yesteryear, make sure to head over to the Obsolete Technology Website. The site is even enough to navigate, but the design does look like something straight out of the 1990s — that may be keeping in line with the vintage theme that rules the roost at the site, however.
Benton resident. Rogue journalist. Recovering attorney. Email = Ethan@FirstArkansasNews.net.