40 years of “standard architecture” personal computers

I hadn’t remembered the anniversary, but Extreme Tech reminds us that 40 years ago, the Intel 8086 chip came on to the market – and things have never been the same since then.  (Image below is courtesy of Wikipedia.) Forty years ago today, Intel launched the original 8086 microprocessor — the grandfather of every x86 CPU ever built, including the ones we use now. This, it must be noted, is more or less the opposite outcome of what everyone expected at the time, including Intel. . . . Initially, the 8086 was intended to be a stopgap product while Intel

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OW! times four – toes, that is

I’ve just got back from a visit to the podiatrist.  I developed an ingrown toenail that, in turn, developed a very nasty deep infection.  The doctor reckoned the nail had to go to save the toe, and clean out the infection.  While he was doing that, he also took off three nails that had been infected with a fungus of some kind decades ago in Africa, and which had never healed up, no matter what treatment I tried.  He reckoned that was the only cure for something like that. I’m now sitting painfully at my desk, foot throbbing like mad,

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Suitcases like I’ve never seen before

I had to smile when reading an article at Laughing Squid about a new self-contained kitchen-in-a-suitcase. There’s also a desk (with chair) in a suitcase: And even a bed-in-a-suitcase: I’m not sure how practical they all are, but full marks to the designer for fitting everything into so small a space.  The prices, however, are outrageous! Peter

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Cabin pron

I’ve seen posts on several blogs from time to time offering pictures of picturesque cabins in the woods, in the mountains, at the seashore, etc.  I was reminded of them when I found this image on Gab this morning.  Clickit to biggit. Imagine waking up to that view in summer!  It’d be great.  Winter . . . not so much, I guess.  I imagine it’d be really cold up there! Peter

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Not the Moodiest of Blues

I’ve enjoyed the music of the Moody Blues, particularly their original seven albums, for many years.  I was therefore intrigued to learn that an early version of their song “The Story In Your Eyes“, slightly extended from the one that was released and with slightly different vocal patterns, had been recorded in 1970.  It languished unremembered until 2008, when it appeared on the remastered version of their album “Every Good Boy Deserves Favour”.  It’s different enough that it caught my attention, so here it is. How young they were then – and how young I was . . . innocents

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I may resemble that remark

Miss D. and I have been absent from the gym for several weeks, due to minor health issues that are rapidly being resolved.  Yesterday was our first day back . . . and today, we’re so stiff it hurts!  That made yesterday’s Pearls Before Swine cartoon particularly appropriate.  (Click the image to see a larger version at its Web page.) What can I say but “Heh (Ow!)”? Peter

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Another teaser

I’m hard at work editing the first book in the “Cochrane’s Company” trilogy, “The Stones of Silence”, for publication in a few days’ time.  I showed you an earlier version of the cover some time ago, along with a teaser excerpt.  Here’s how the final cover will look. And, to whet your appetite even further, here’s the cover for Book 2 (from which I published a teaser excerpt earlier). I discussed the trilogy, and the process of creating and editing it, in an article over at Mad Genius Club last week.  Please click over there if you’d like to learn

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Back from the road

Miss D. and I headed down to Fort Worth today for a little official business, plus some “us”-time.  It’s two-plus hours from here to there, so it’s no trouble to go down and back in a day. The official business didn’t take long, so we looked for something interesting to see when we were done.  We ended up at the Texas Civil War Museum.  It has a large number of exhibits about the lives and equipment of regular soldiers on both sides, with emphasis on the (named) individuals who owned many of the items on display, including a surprising number

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Road trip

Miss D. and I will be making a quick road trip today, so blogging will be sparse.  It’s kinda hard to juggle the steering wheel and a smartphone when writing blog posts – or, as a passenger, writing posts while using the phone’s navigation function! Please enjoy the bloggers listed in the sidebar.  They write good stuff too!  I may put up an article later this afternoon or this evening, if we get back in time.  Otherwise, blogging will resume tomorrow. Peter

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It’s a dripping world out there

Tuesday’s “blue norther“, as they call such weather events in northern Texas, left a thick layer of frozen sleet on the ground, and all over local roads.  Driving was very tricky for a while, and most of us stayed firmly at home. Today, things are warming up (well, to freezing point at least, and hopefully a few degrees above that by this afternoon).  Melting ice is dripping from the eaves of the roof, and the road outside is slush rather than ice.  Hopefully driving will be back to normal by tomorrow.  I have to go out later, but I’m hoping

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