Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: They don't make 'em like they used to

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  • Hamboy,

    Net who?
    I thought it died a long time ago. lol

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 162 posts Report Reply

  • Che Tibby,

    i too loved netscape.

    internet explorer was, is, and always will be, poo.

    i'm proud to say firefox is the only PC app i'll use.

    unless communicating with microsoft to download updates and the like. because they won't talk with anyone else...

    d.i.c.k.s

    the back of an envelope • Since Nov 2006 • 2042 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I still have Netscape and sometimes use it if other browsers don't work. But that's almost never these days.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • nic.wise,

    I remember Netscape's arrival. Word got about (well, my buddy Richard Ram told me) in late 1994 that a new, much faster version of the NCSA Mosaic graphical web browser was on the way. It duly arrived. You could download it (good lord, the beta was nearly a whole megabyte!). For free!

    Ah, the days of ICONZ (before it became Asia Online then back to ICONZ again), $10/meg and $50/meg for email. and PPP over (newly invented) 33.6K modems. Stacked on a bookshelf. With desk fans blowing in to keep everything cool.

    Seriously.

    Everything changed. Microsoft, which had planned to own everything via the Microsoft Network, built in to Windows 95, had to start making stuff up, quickly. It shoved a barely functional browser called Internet Explorer into the new OS, declaring that it would be henceforth looking to "embrace and extend" the internet. Ya, rly.

    That should maybe be "they bought / licensed a browser", I think it was actually mosaic, with a new front end.... Look in the IE copyright, it was Portions (C) NCSA for a LONG time (like, IE5.5 long time)

    Ah, good old days ;-)

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 87 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Stevens,

    Ah, good old netscape. Good times, good times...
    I liked it. And I can remember coming back to Auckland Uni one year and finding that all the PCs in the labs had suddenly moved from Netscape to explorer.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 230 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I still use Netscape for my POP mail too. But that's mainly because I don't use mail so I can't be stuffed changing. I basically use Hotmail, with Firefox. Oh, the irony.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Ah, the days of ICONZ (before it became Asia Online then back to ICONZ again), $10/meg and $50/meg for email.

    I sometimes like to amuse myself by totting up what my current monthly usage would have cost me back in the old days. 60GB a month, anyone?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Dave Patrick,

    I joined IHUG back in the day when they started their "unlimited data" offers on dial-up ("14.4k modem - knock yourself out, download as much as you like"). Netscape was the only browser I used back then, and until version 4 it still was. But 4 was just too much bloat, plus it crashed on a couple of sites I used to visit regularly.

    So for a couple of years or so I was forced to use IE (4, then 5) until Firefox appeared. Since then, Windows Updates are the only things I've touched IE for.

    Rangiora, Te Wai Pounamu • Since Nov 2006 • 261 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    I just checked my website stats - in the last six months, I had seven visitors using Netscape, and they all looked like one-off visits.

    I fondly remember when I first used Netscape back in '95 - the version with the blocky 'N' that pulsated to let you know it was loading a webpage, and that default grey as the background for all pages without a background colour set.

    I don't want to get all nostalgic, but I like how the net was back then. It was simple and nerdy and fun and promised great things, even though it was slow, clunky and a bit ugly. Of course, the net is better now, but we wouldn't have got here without the clunky ol' days of Netscape.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Scott Fannen,

    I jumped when ihug launched the unlimited data plan ( I was one of the suckers on Apple eWorld!) and remember dragging my Mac into the Newton Road office of ihug (when it was one room) and dialling up from their room so we could figure out how to configure MacPPP or ConfigPPP (or something like that) so it could even dial in.

    Netscape was fun up until 2 - when you downloaded new versions you actually got new features that were tangible and you could understand - like tables (oooo) and frames (aaaaahh).

    Now we do have good standards compliance on the internet but you need to be a geek to figure out how to anything complicated - back then your average guy (or gal) could become an expert of all there was to know in no time at all.

    Oh, well - at least we still have about:mozilla

    Warsaw • Since Nov 2006 • 14 posts Report Reply

  • Grant McDougall,

    ...my buddy Richard Ram...

    Wreck Small Speakers On Expensive Stereos!!!

    (If anyone can - ahem burn me a copy of their album, it'd be appreciated. :)

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2006 • 760 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    (If anyone can - ahem burn me a copy of their album, it'd be appreciated. :)

    You should know that such a group will have an international fanboy following and will have ended up on an mp3 blog.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Adrian Wills,

    Ha ha... just tried to give the emulator a go and got the message:

    Sorry, due to heavy load on the server, browsing is quite slow.
    On the positive side, it makes the experience even more authentic...

    Awesome!

    As a web developer, must say thanks for the reference to downloading an old copy of Netscape, had never gotten around to getting a hold of it. Anyone have an old copy of IE for Mac they might want to direct me to? Need one but been too busy to dig deep... What with spending all my spare time reading Public Address.

    Parnell, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    Between Netscape and Firefox came Mozilla. Used it for a long time on my desktop. Funny thing, since Firefox's obvious success in grabbing Microsoft has reassembled its IE team and made 3 major releases. They have also moved back into standards compliant mode which is a boon for developers.

    Competition, its a wonderful thing and don't let those BRT monopolist types tell you different.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    I sometimes like to amuse myself by totting up what my current monthly usage would have cost me back in the old days. 60GB a month, anyone?

    Seriously. Get out more dude. There's a whole world out there waiting for you.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    I thought Firefox *was* Netscape version N?

    (My eyes glaze over when I see an explanation of open source politics).

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    __I sometimes like to amuse myself by totting up what my current monthly usage would have cost me back in the old days. 60GB a month, anyone?__

    Seriously. Get out more dude. There's a whole world out there waiting for you.

    It's very easy to rack up many gigs by setting up bittorrent downloads of movies and TV shows and letting them go at night while you're asleep, or during the day when you're out. (And I'm sure having teenagers in the household contributes too)

    It's not quite the sign of a lifeless nerd.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Seriously. Get out more dude. There's a whole world out there waiting for you.

    This "world" thing -- is there a torrent for that?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Gabor Toth,

    Back in early 1995 I had just begun my Political Science honours year at V.U.W.
    A friend had discovered the university's Computer Science department had just decided to offer "free" dial-up internet access to Post Grads. The Comp Sci folk didn't exactly publicise this fact though most students and staff within the humanities faculties had no idea what this internet-thing was anyway. I took out a loan to buy my first PC and signed up. Other than activating your account and giving you a phone number, the IT staff offered no support and would'nt answer any questions as to how exactly one was supposed to make the thing work so apart from a bit of advice from friends, you were on your own. For a few weeks I zoomed around the early WWW using Lynx with my PC essentially acting as a dumb-terminal for large computer at Varsity. It may not have been pretty, but damn it was fast. Then a friend told me about this new (free!!) software which had just come out called “Netscape”. I can still remember the exact moment when after a patient download using on my top-of-the-line $500 14.4k modem, Netscape fired up for the first-time. It was one of those personal "what hath God wrought?" moments. I could hardy sleep that night from the sheer excitement of what I had witnessed - on my own computer. I sometimes wonder whether I will ever experience another moment like that in my lifetime.

    Wellington • Since Dec 2006 • 137 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    Seriously. Get out more dude. There's a whole world out there waiting for you.

    Was it Amy Hoy or Kathy Sierra who had a slide with a tshirt that said "I went outside once. The graphics weren't that good"?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 746 posts Report Reply

  • Thomas Johnson,

    Alway used to be some entertaining reading at jwz.org (including one of the niftiest front pages I've seen in a long time).

    Inside can be found tales of early times at Netscape - see Cries For Help.

    You might like to check out his blog too, but be aware that it can be, uh, well, interesting is a good description I suppose.

    Wellington • Since Oct 2007 • 98 posts Report Reply

  • Damen,

    On the topic of browsers and PicLens - it's available for Safari as well:
    http://www.piclens.com/site/safari/

    Auckland • Since Apr 2007 • 2 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    It's very easy to rack up many gigs by setting up bittorrent downloads of movies and TV shows and letting them go at night while you're asleep, or during the day when you're out. (And I'm sure having teenagers in the household contributes too)

    It's not quite the sign of a lifeless nerd.

    Oh I didn't mean the torrenting. When I get home I'll start downloading Ducks vs Blackhawks from last night. It's the figuring out your current usage in 1995 costings that was more of a concern.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • InternationalObserver,

    I don't use Firefox much -- yes, it's flexible, but Safari 3.0 is faster and funkier and I'm still just an Apple fanboy.

    Eh? Is this true? I know nothing about Macs (I just bought one and it ... heh heh .. worked) but I was reliably informed (or ...__**not**__!) that Firefox was better than Safari so I've been using that since I bought my new Intel chip OSX Tiger (Leopard's the new one right? Mine is 10.4.11). Seems to work fine, but if you think I should go back to Safari??

    BTW (since I guess this blog will attract computer geeks like the proverbial) any clues how I transfer the files from my OS9 Mac to OSX? The salesman never told me they wouldn't work on an Intel Chip Mac. Yes, I've asked this question before, but I was told there was nothing you could do except download OpenOffice which I did, but without success. (I know nothing about computers remember)

    And while I'm asking for advice; is there a doctor in the house? So far on PAS I've been typing 'draw dropper' instead of 'jaw dropper', 'put' instead of 'bought', 'seaman' instead of 'salesman' and sundry other typos. Am I about to get a heart attack?

    Since Jun 2007 • 909 posts Report Reply

  • david w,

    This "world" thing -- is there a torrent for that?

    I wouldn't bother, HD has much better resolution...

    In the lab • Since Feb 2008 • 3 posts Report Reply

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