Tag: pc

It’s a kind of magic

Evenimg_0744tually I had to take my old computer from my parents’ house. It has been a long story, now it’s nearly 9 years I’m married and I ran out of excuses for leaving those huge boxes in their basament. The alternative would have been to trash my old and yet beloved Amiga.
So I brought my A2000, keyboard and TV monitor home and last Sunday. After unpacking everything in the living room, under the attentive and slightly worried look of my wife, I connected and switched it on.
It has been a strong emotion. Amiga meant a lot to me. It was the first Real computer back then, it was a Linux before Linux (someone may put that Linux is an Amiga after Amiga), and I spent a lot of time with it. With my Amiga I played, I learned, I wrote software, I painted, I created…
The computer, true to its spirit, happily and trouble-less answered to the switch flip, with a ready humming, a proper hard drive clicking sound and blinking light. To make it short, despite of about 15 years spent in the basement, the Amiga worked fine as out of the box.
Rivers of inks have been written on the Amiga, so I won’t tell anything new here. The Amiga had been a turning point, a milestone in the history of personal computers. It was the second pre-emptive multitasking cheap computer (the first was the Sinclair QL some years before), it was the first multimedia platform, the first to have no configuration hassles.
Continuing the tradition of home computing (ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC and C=64), Amiga brought the fun of computer to new levels.
Well, now I’m a bit battled on its future. I don’t have the space to keep it at home (my wife patience is not endless) and it’s rather expensive to add an ethernet adapter and tie it up to my network. On the other hand leaving it in the basement doesn’t look as a pleasant perspective, even if it is much better than bringing it to wasteland.
For sure, I’m going to extract everything was on the 120Mbytes HD (that has no bad blocks!) and have a try to UAE or something like that. Using the RS232 interface at 57.6kbit/s won’t be a brief experience.
I already recovered the screens I drew for ‘Polignomica’ a graphical adventure technically inspired to “Zak McKraken”, set in the Milan Polytechnic, and going (soon or later) to upload them here.
In the meantime my look felt over my new palm (‘new’ to me, it is used and is 2 years old), it is some 50 times faster, has a memory capacity 20 times larger and fits perfectly in one hand (or pocket for what matters). Well, that’s how the world goes.
Anyway Amiga has more magic!

Linux – Windows 1 – 0

Sometimes there are things you give for granted, like gravity, water being wet, 220V being harmful, and Windows interfacing painlessly with every kind of hardware. I was so convinced about this that I was utmost surprised to find problems with the wireless network of my notebook. In fact, I had no problem with Linux, Fedora Core 3 latest kernel (2.6.10-1.741_FC3) supports naively the Intel pro 2200BG hosted in my Toshiba. Just a matter of a few settings and I could access the internet from my living room without wire hassle.

I expected Windows XP HE to be more or less the same thing, and the starting was good – it told me it was looking up all available wireless networks. Good… But after some minutes of idle wait, it returned to me with one network that wasn’t mine for sure. So I tried to configure it manually with the network name (maxpagani.org 🙂 ), it waited another bunch of minutes, but wasn’t able to find it. So I tried to connect to the other network to get exactly the same result… no connection.

I spent something more than an hour trying to make it work with no success. What is puzzling is that XP-HE came pre-installed on my notebook and my wi-fi network is just a plain network with default options (even no encryption enabled).

So… Linux, good job!