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Computer Collector
June 12th, 2005, 09:33 AM
Ive always had a feeling deep down, and although its only built on speculation and opinion, here it is:

Toy computers are computers that take Ram Pak cartridges and that you plug into a TV.

Real computers come with a real monitor, disk drive, and dont take carts.

For example, a real computer would be the Commodore PET. A toy would be the C-64
Is this opinion stupid or is there some reality to it?

Jorg
June 12th, 2005, 11:24 AM
Ive always had a feeling deep down, and although its only built on speculation and opinion, here it is:

Toy computers are computers that take Ram Pak cartridges and that you plug into a TV.

Real computers come with a real monitor, disk drive, and dont take carts.

For example, a real computer would be the Commodore PET. A toy would be the C-64
Is this opinion stupid or is there some reality to it?

I'd say a toy is a machine you can wack someone with without doing much damage... A real computer therefore is an IBM 5170, or a PDP11...

Terry Yager
June 12th, 2005, 03:15 PM
Ive always had a feeling deep down, and although its only built on speculation and opinion, here it is:

Toy computers are computers that take Ram Pak cartridges and that you plug into a TV.

Real computers come with a real monitor, disk drive, and dont take carts.

For example, a real computer would be the Commodore PET. A toy would be the C-64
Is this opinion stupid or is there some reality to it?

I'd say a toy is a machine you can wack someone with without doing much damage... A real computer therefore is an IBM 5170, or a PDP11...

Damage to what, the machine, or the person's head?

I've been told that Commodore 64s float, at least for a little while. If ya can't use it as a boat anchor, what good is it?

--T

Mad-Mike
June 13th, 2005, 12:36 AM
It's only a real computer if it has virtually unlimited expansion capabilities without having to make new peripherals by hand. Which pretty much leaves us with PC's, Mainframes, Macintosh, and some S-100 systems.

carlsson
June 13th, 2005, 01:43 AM
If it should not take cartridges, it is basically the same as saying it should not have an expansion bus. Woo, when was the last real computer manufactured - some time in the early 1970s? Also, if the computer needs a built-in or otherwise included monitor to be a real one, it also disallows most systems.

Seriously, the line should be drawn somewhere around programmability. If the device has a way to obtain software from an external source or even replacable ROM chip, it is more of a real computer. If it also has a keyboard or other input device that can be used to add or select which software to run, it is a plus.

vic user
June 13th, 2005, 03:44 AM
toys?

every single one of my computers is a toy to me.

but i also view my tv as a toy, my stereo, and a bunch of other things.

no serious computers allowed in my house :wink:

chris

Rick Ethridge
June 13th, 2005, 05:54 AM
What you say, Loomis? Commodore 64 a toy? Commodore 64 were used to control industrial HVAC units. Don't think so. Try a Pong game or Atari 2600. Try even a TRS-80 MC-10 or TS-1000 stock.

Terry Yager
June 13th, 2005, 07:58 AM
How's this for a guideline? If it's sold in toy stores...

--T

Terry Yager
June 13th, 2005, 08:02 AM
toys?

every single one of my computers is a toy to me.

but i also view my tv as a toy, my stereo, and a bunch of other things.

no serious computers allowed in my house :wink:

chris

Good point, vu. I've only ever had one "real" computer, my Tandy 102. That's the only computer I ever did real work on. Everything else is just to play with.

--T

EvanK
June 13th, 2005, 10:35 AM
This is the dumbest thread ever. If it's got a microchip, it's a computer.

Terry Yager
June 13th, 2005, 11:57 AM
Some of the best toys have microchips...

--T

mryon
June 13th, 2005, 12:51 PM
toys and computers are not disjoint sets.

Mad-Mike
June 13th, 2005, 09:11 PM
toys and computers are not disjoint sets.

It seems there's too much of a mis-definition of what a computer is now adays...what most people think of is what once was called an "Appliance Computer" like that what your staring at right now.

So by the classic definition of "computer", the old one, game systems, your car, your microwave, your T.V., your stereo, your watch, your kid's LCD video game, all of that including even a Pong System is considered a computer, it uses mathmatic COMPUTations to do the job, but on the other hand.....

Most people think of an appliance computer when computer is said these days, therefore it does not apply to other classes of machine such as your Microwave or your Atari 2600. Yet that does not mean said machines can't be made INTO a full computer. If someone had enough knowhow to make memory expansion, how to create a working keyboard and mouse, and such, an Atari 2600 could even surf the internet (the question would be "are you nuts?" concerning wanting to do it considering you would have to put a TON of add-on's including loads of RAM, a workable keyboard, possibly some way to use a track ball or keyboard to run the program, and even made a new modem to work with the serial address lines on the machine, and it would be waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay beyond the scope of what most people would be willing to do on their own, and then the next challenge would be to manage to cram a Web Browser onto some kind of huge bankswitched cartridge that would probably resemble a cutting board when finished).

I consider the Commodore 64 a true computer, there's even an internet browser availible for it I believe, too bad I don't remember the link though, I'll see if I can find it tonight and edit it in here a bit later on...

My whole thought is this arguement is null anyway, the way they keep cramming E-mail and instant message service into computerized machines such as your car and your cell phone these days, eventually everything will be computerized to some degree. Actually, that's pretty frightening, being able to send and recieve E-mail on my Keurig Coffee Machine in 50 years, or send recipies via Toaster Fax (okay, so I'm getting a bit silly). It's just by one definition, anything that computes is a computer, but by another, it's anything with a keyboard that can do more than play Pac-Man and Pong.

carlsson
June 14th, 2005, 12:16 AM
Atari 2600 and NES are interesting points. Both are considered video games, cartridge loaded so it is possible to change software, but quite hard to write your own. But they have most key elements you expect on a bigger computer, and with some hacking one can get a lot out of it.

But it is true that microwaves and maybe even more washing machines and talking dolls today are computerized using the same 6502, 68000 and other chips that were populating home computers twenty years ago. A talking doll makes me think of robots. Are those computers or a class of their own?

I saw some video clip from a recent Japanese fair which featured one of the most life-like robotesses ever. So far, "she" seemed limited in her movements and it was not clear if "she" was programmed to talk, but from the appearance on video it would not surprise me if we have walking, talking androids or what they should be called within 5-10 years from now.

Terry Yager
June 14th, 2005, 07:19 AM
My daughter had a robotic doll that did everything but plow! The thing cost over $150.00, back in the early ninties. I couldn't wait to get my hands on it and start hacking, after she became tired of it, but my ex-wife disposed of it on a closet-cleaning binge before I ever got a chance. My loss...

--T

carlsson
June 14th, 2005, 10:59 PM
Huh. I get inner views of a mad professor turning innocent dolls into lethal weapons. :wink:

Terry Yager
June 15th, 2005, 08:20 AM
Actually, the doll (I finally remembered the name, Baby Heather by Mattel) was a pretty effective weapon in it's own right. Our neighbor across the street was a 16-year-old boy, who would come to visit every day. After he saw that doll in action, it spooked him so badly that he wouldn't come into the house if it was in the room. I'd have to hide it in a bedroom before he'd even cross the threshold. (The "Chuckie" movies were popular around that time).

--T

vic user
June 15th, 2005, 10:36 AM
speaking of horror movies with dolls, did anyone ever see the movie with Karen Black in it, "Trilogy of Terror"?

man, that witch doctor doll was spooky!!!

chria

mryon
June 15th, 2005, 05:00 PM
no kidding!

I had nightmares for years after seeing that. what 30 years ago?



speaking of horror movies with dolls, did anyone ever see the movie with Karen Black in it, "Trilogy of Terror"?

man, that witch doctor doll was spooky!!!

chria

vic user
June 16th, 2005, 03:47 AM
i think you are right, it's been that long now!

i saw a vhs copy for sale a few months back at a department store, for like $5.00 cdn, and regret not picking it up.

i wish todd Mcfarlane would do an action figure of that doll.

could even be life size :)

chris

carlsson
June 16th, 2005, 02:54 PM
Suggest it to the Japanese, now when they're working with human-looking robots.

There was a movie some years ago - I can't remember its name - which takes place in the future. Some guy has a household robot/love doll which broke down, and that model is no longer produced. He tracks down a warehouse and takes a long trip together with a (real) girl friend to obtain a replacement robot, using the personality chip from the old one. In the end, I think he falls in love with his girl friend rather than installing a robot again. Does it ring any bells? I am not able to locate it on IMDb. I remember I found the movie a bit silly, although an interesting future concept, in particular the part in the beginning when the salesperson shows him the new selection of female household robots, which look and act completely different from what he is used to. Much like how trends and functionality differs on other types of products from year to year.

DimensionDude
June 16th, 2005, 05:25 PM
Yep, it does ring a bell. Cherry 2000, with Melanie Griffith as the "tracker."

Remember near the beginning of the movie when "our hero" is trying to make a date at the bar? I always thought that a more interesting story would be how the society got to that point where lengthy legal negotiations were required just for a date.

Kent

carlsson
June 17th, 2005, 06:17 AM
Thanks. I was quite sure it was something either with Red, Max or Sonja, but the combinations (Red Max, Red Sonja, Max Headroom etc) were completely different movies.

If Sam had not lured his robot doll into the bubble bath, I suppose she would had kept functioning, and there had not been a race to get a replica. That should be a lesson not to misuse your electronic stuff in other ways than intended by the manufacturer!

Some years ago I read some android sex fiction (woo, a confession!) and one story was about a guy who had broken up with his girlfriend and bought a 2nd hand robot instead. The ex-girlfriend was upset and wanted revenge. She had an errand to her ex-boyfriend, who was not at home, only the robot. The ex found that the robot was sold cheap because it had a computation bug; if you made it compute too much aritmetic operations, it would overheat and eventually melt down. So the ex-girlfriend was friendly to her replacement, chit-chatted while the robot cooked dinner. The question was if the ex would stay for dinner, and the robot needed to adapt the recipe for one more person, i.e. calculate how much more of each ingredient was required. The robot thought hard, the ex encouraged her to try and after a while the robot got an overload and broke down permanently. The ex silently left the apartment to wait for her ex-boyfriend come home and see that his robot love slave unexpectingly was damaged beyond repair without no physical marks.

vic user
June 17th, 2005, 06:57 AM
that's nasty!

chris

carlsson
June 18th, 2005, 04:36 AM
(. Women are evil! .)

If it had been in the real life, I'm sure one could replace the broken parts (change head?) or look for another unit, new or 2nd hand. Or maybe even consider to find a real woman. Maybe the author was inspired by the first few Pentium chips which had the multiplication bug, although I'm not sure one could make them overheat by triggering the bug.

Terry Yager
June 19th, 2005, 05:49 PM
Well, I got one (soon). My very own Baby Heather doll to hack on all I wish, courtesy of eBay. I'll post updates if anything interesting comes up.

--T

carlsson
June 20th, 2005, 01:36 AM
What is the doll able to do in the first place, that makes use of a CPU?

There is a Swedish radio program that tries to look up and explain small issues; "this is how it works". They often call different places to ask questions. Some are plain silly (what was Jesus' surname?) while other are more serious (how do you take care of a dead elephant?).

Once the host called Mattel regarding a talking doll that learns the owner's name and says "I love you [Name]", translated in respective languages. The host claimed to have fallen in love with the (Swedish) voice, and wanted to find the girl who recorded the phrase. He called the Swedish office, the UK office, even customer service in the US back and forth, but without success. Either they keep it a secret, or nobody within the company really kept track of who they contract. The doll was a few years old too, so the records may have been stored away long time ago. One wished that the girl or woman would have listened and called in to say "it's me!".

Terry Yager
June 20th, 2005, 04:51 AM
What is the doll able to do in the first place, that makes use of a CPU?

This doll makes extensive use of robotics, especially in the head area. The arms move, the head moves, the lips move when she talks or eats, the eyes move around (and blink). She has three microphones built into her stomache, to detect which direction your voice is comming from when you speak to her, and she'll turn her head and look at you before replying. She has a vocabulary of over 150 different phrases, and has a real-time clock that can be programmed for bedtime, wake-up time, and meal times. She tells you when she's hungry, and then you must feed her or she becomes very fussy. There's a sensor in her mouth to detect whether you have actually fed her or not. I forget the rest of the features. but all in all, it's a pretty sophisticated bit of electronics to hand over to an 8-year-old to play with. I do recall it costing around $9.00 just to put the batteries in her. It takes 4 AA, 4 D-cells, and IIRC, a nine-volt all together.

--T

Terry Yager
June 20th, 2005, 04:56 AM
Some are plain silly (what was Jesus' surname?)

That's easy...Chree-ist! What I'd like to know is what the "H" stands for in his middle name?

--T

vic user
June 20th, 2005, 05:43 AM
What I'd like to know is what the "H" stands for in his middle name?

i'm going for 'holy' or 'hell'

chris

carlsson
June 20th, 2005, 01:13 PM
The arms move, the head moves, the lips move when she talks or eats, the eyes move around (and blink). She has three microphones built into her stomache, to detect which direction your voice is comming from when you speak to her, and she'll turn her head and look at you before replying.
Suggested hacks: make the doll roll her eyes when you speak to her, possibly even turning her face away from you.

She has a vocabulary of over 150 different phrases, and has a real-time clock that can be programmed for bedtime, wake-up time, and meal times.
Out of the 150 phrases, limit it to only a few; like, well, duh. Make the doll go back to sleep at least twice after wake-up time, and refuse bedtime, maybe even have a meal when she should sleep.

Then you can sell the software as the Teenage Heather module.

Terry Yager
June 20th, 2005, 02:20 PM
Actually, her full name is Baby Heather Grow Up Doll, so I'm wondering if different age-appropriate software modules might not have been a part of the original design plan.

--T

carlsson
June 21st, 2005, 07:15 AM
Oh. But I'm sure they would not have selled the bratty, uncooperative teenager module. :) If you can make the doll get, or at least believe she gets pimples and look fat, it is even more authentic IMHO.

Terry Yager
June 27th, 2005, 07:06 AM
I think I'd rather mod the head so it turns all the way around, rolls the eyeballs back, speaks in tongues, and spews out green sh!t.

--T

Terry Yager
June 27th, 2005, 11:50 AM
Other possible hacks:

Sit in the corner mumbling incoherently, shaking & twitching, and drooling on herself -- "Fetal Alcohol Syndrome" module.

Cry and cry all the time until stuck with a needle, then go unconcious for 8 hours -- "Crack-Baby Heather."

Fall into a Persistant Vegatative State -- "Shaken-Baby Syndrome" mod. (This mod comes naturally, if I accidently let the smoke out of 'er). Another variant of this theme might be "SIDS Baby Heather."

Refuse food, and throw up after being force-fed -- "Anorexic/Bulemic" module.

Threaten other dolls with physical violence, and demand thier lunch money -- "Gangsta Baby Heather."

Any other ideas, anyone?

--T

How about adding such phrases as "Hi, sailor" and "You wanna party?" -- "Baby Hooker Heather"...

(I know it's kinda twisted, but what do you expect from a grown man who plays with dolls)?

--T

vic user
June 27th, 2005, 04:00 PM
this is most excellent!

please continue with this tangent!

chris

Terry Yager
June 27th, 2005, 06:25 PM
this is most excellent!

please continue with this tangent!

chris

Ok, you asked for it...

Cover her body with fur, make her bark at the moon and try to bite people. Only wake up once a month, when the moon is full -- "Howlin' Heather."

Never wear shoes, chew tobacco & spit a lot, speak with a drawl, and date her own cousins. Play only C&W music. -- "Hillbilly Heather."

Program her to suffer from numerous imaginary diseases, complain a lot and swallow only medicine. Read only out-dated magazines, and drive everyone else nuts playing elevator music, like in the doctor's office. -- "Hypochondriac Heather."

Hang out in locker rooms, exercize a lot, play disco music, watch workout videos, drink Gatorade, and only talk about dieting. -- "HardBody Heather."

Give her lots of tattoos & piercings, dress in black, dye her hair green, stay up all night & sleep all day, and only play heavy metal music...way too loud. -- "Headbanger Heather."

Follow her favorite band around from city to city, hang around ticket booths & auditoriums, sleep on the sidewalk, never bathe, and speak only in metaphors. -- "DeadHead Heather."

Ride a big chrome-plated motorcycle, dress in leathers, eat bugs, drink lots of beer, never speak, just belch & fart a lot, play only Outlaw music. -- "Harley Heather."

Hang out in cyber-cafes, drink Jolt cola & eat nachos exclusively, never sleep, speak only in words of four syllables or more, figure out her bill in binary, octal, & hex, and tip for whichever number is smaller. -- "Hacker Heather."

What d'ya think of "Hawaiian Heather"...? "Hoosier Heather"...?? Hiawatha Heather"...???

<groaning>...Ghawd, the possibilities are endless!

--T

carlsson
June 28th, 2005, 04:11 AM
The speak in tongue module may also come handy for the Saved by a Sect Heather.

Hit people with a hockey stick, make sex movies and go into a boxing career.. Heather Harding.

Uncontrollably lift her skirt in public, unbutton her blouse.. Flasher Heather.

Ride a VW Beetle.. Herbie Heather (did Disney really digitally post-production shrink Lindsay Lohan's breasts, or was it just a publicity stunt?)

I'd rather not go to extreme politics or racism, but Heil Heather also has a certain ring to it.. :roll:

Terry Yager
June 28th, 2005, 05:33 AM
Heather Harding...ROFL...I love it!

--T