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how do YOU define a "tweener?"

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  • Casey
    replied
    Thanks to all who replied. Just recently had a chance to log in again after a while.

    I have two Athlon systems that seem to fit most definitions nicely except that they don't have any ISA slots. One has an Asus A7m266 motherboard running a 1.4Gz Athlon and 1Gb of DDR ram. Voodoo 3 3000 AGP card. Right now it has 1.2M and 360K floppy drives installed. Haven't plugged my USB 1.44 floppy into it yet. Right now it's running WinXP but it was quite happy with 98SE, even with 1Gb of ram. Thinking seriously of back-grading it to 98SE again.

    The other is an MSI KT4 Ultra running a 2Gz Athlon and 1Gb of DDR-400 ram. It had a couple of SATA-1 ports on the motherboard, but I couldn't get them to work a long time ago. I've read that one needs SP3 under XP to get that to work. That may be why, as I don't think I had SP3 installed back then. It has an ATI Radeon 8500 AGP card.

    Both have 2 serial, 1 parallel ports along with USB. Both have Ethernet 10/100 controllers, the Asus using a separate card and the MSI using an on-board controller.

    I have an Asus PVI-486SP3 motherboard, but I think I killed the CPU. That's another story. Thinking of getting a 486dx2-66 chip on eBay to see if I can wake it up now I know which jumper settings to use.

    Leave a comment:


  • deathshadow
    replied
    Originally posted by OldCat View Post
    as a non-native English speaker, I assume it comes from "between", right?
    A bit more complicated than that from an etymology standpoint as we get into Olde Englisc "tween" and "twixt" which have mostly been dropped from the modern lexicon, but yes.

    I always assumed the term "tweener" was used for the same reason it is in animation. A "tweener" is a low level animator who does "tweening" -- the process of creating sub-frames between keyframes created by more talented (or at least better paid) artists.

    Normally in professional animation -- at least in the pre-computer days -- you would have "master artists" who would generally do images that were more like storyboards showing beginning and end poses. Your second tier "animators" would then do a low framerate animation (typically on onion paper) to flesh things out. Quite often these mid-tier animators had a better grasp of anatomy and movement which is why whilst the character design and 'feel' was left to the masters, the animators are who gave it life.

    Even so, the animators would often only make one or two frame a second animations unless the scene were particularly complex. At the bottom rung are the line animators who would often be the first to transfer the onion skin drawings to cellulose as inked line art, and then the 'tweeners' would come in to draw in-between the frames the remaining lines. Quite often this bordered on slave labor considering the pay, lack of recognition, long hours, mass labor needed, and disposability of the workers -- hence why many animation projects outsource to countries where low wages and child labor laws are a bit lax. Even more true when one considers some of the nastier chemicals used in traditional animation, many of which aren't even legal in the "first world"

    The first pass tweener would draw in between the keyframes, handing off their new frame and the one after it to another tweener, then drawing between the previous frame and the one they just made, repeating until the desired frame rate was met. A lot of anime traditionally 'gave up, close enough' at 16 or even 8 frames a second focusing more on the quality of each frame. Ralph Bakshi on the other hand obsessed about framerate to the point the quality of the art looked like cheap-ass nick-toons AND character deformation from a lack of sufficient keyframes set in.

    It's also why vector animation formats -- like flash (which despite it's decline in the webspace, IS alive and strong in animation circles even if they render to movie format) -- have tweening built into them. You create the objects/outlines as vectors in keyframes, and let the computer do the tweening for you.

    One of the few times I would applaud technology eliminating an entire class of job.

    Leave a comment:


  • OldCat
    replied
    A very interesting thread. My "tweener" as you call it (as a non-native English speaker, I assume it comes from "between", right?) is my Panasonic CF-41 laptop that is Windows / DOS machine and has 3,5 inch floppy drive and CD-Rom. Unfortunately, no USB / SD card / other media.

    Leave a comment:


  • deathshadow
    replied
    To me a tweener is a machine that exists between two technological gaps, able to access both. It's a very WIDE term. An example would be a machine that can access a USB flash drive AND 360k floppy drives. Or a machine that can access my LAN but also has an actual parallel port on it.

    Though locally the term "middling" seems more popular than "tweener".

    At least that's how I've always used the term. If I'm sitting there using it to do stuff, it's not "filling a gap" between things now, is it?

    Leave a comment:


  • Zippy Zapp
    replied
    When I think tweener I think Pentium to Pentium II/III. Definitely needs to be able to run two floppy drives of all formats, which many P1-P3 boards can do. I think a PII era machine is a good choice. Specifically the ones that have energy saver settings in the BIOS that can throttle the CPU speed down based on percentage. This helps for slowing the speed of the CPU more effectively then a utility like MOSLO.

    But yeah, ISA, PCI, FDC, IDE, Parallel, Serial, PS2, USB, etc. Excellent are ones with no onboard audio/video/network, rather just the basics leaving you the flexibility to choose what cards you want for those functions.

    Leave a comment:


  • carangil
    replied
    My favorite computer is a k6-2+ 600Mhz which I have in regular use. It has PCI, ISA, AGP, IDE, and of course floppy. It has a PCI SATA card installed. It has a parallel port, 2 serial ports, USB ports. I've used AT, PS/2 and USb keyboards on it. USB mice and serial mice. You can copy IDE drives to SATA. I've run ISA and PCI sound cards on it. The floppy controller supports two drives, and both 5.25 and 3.5. It also runs a fairly modern Linux (Ubuntu 10). Runs DOS games fine, and ones that benefit from fast cpu like software rendering Descent, Quake, etc run very well, as well has real ISA sound. I've even run a ISA VGA card to see if it works. Oh yeah, it also supports both SIMMs and DIMMs. The only thing its really BAD at is Internet browsing. Running a modern browser in Linux works, but its abysmal performance, and you can forget about video. I can play mpeg2, but anything online now is h264, so forget it.

    Leave a comment:


  • xjas
    replied
    I don't have need for a tweener, my "modern" workstation (a 3.16 GHz Core 2 Duo with 8GB RAM running a fully-modern Linux desktop) has a CD burner, SCSI card (with external port), IDE Zip and LS120 drive. It can seamlessly transfer files to my oldest machines: a 386DX/25 with a Zip drive, an MSX with a DD floppy, and even the C64 & Vic 20 if I plug a 1541 into its parallel port.

    Aside from the 386 (and one 486-based Thinkpad), my other DOS machines can all read USB sticks.

    Leave a comment:


  • Sandisk78
    replied
    Originally posted by Casey View Post
    I'm guessing the XP program you're referring to is Hyperterminal, yes?

    To which Nortons 4.0 do you refer? Commander? Utilities?

    It occurred to me a while ago that telnet might prove useful in getting some of the vintage machines to talk to each other, given the paucity of networking software back then.
    Yep ! It's the hyperterminal - as described here - http://www.classic-computers.org.nz/...cquisition.htm

    And about Norton - for some reason, I realise now, that Norton Commander wasn't VERY popular in the West, but here all people who used to have a IBM PC compatible computer with DOS of any kind - all had a Norton Commander installed... Norton Commander was the symbol of IBM - compatible computer in the USSR and it's territory until Windows era came. )

    And I can't imagine a MS-Dos machine without a Norton Commander 4.0 - I have it an all my vintage IBM compatibles from 8088 to PIII machines.)
    Last edited by Sandisk78; September 20, 2017, 02:33 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • SpidersWeb
    replied
    If it can run a 5.25" floppy and easily transfer off newer media (network etc), then it's good.

    Mine:

    Pentium 166 MMX
    Dual Booting DOS 6 and Win98 (sepearte IDE hard drives, with GAG bootloader)
    Syquest 200C SCSI (reads 44, 88 and 200 carts)
    Iomega ZIP100 SCSI
    CD-RW
    3.5"+ 5.25" HD drives
    S3 + VooDoo 2
    10/100 network card (Windows 10 PC can drop files on it no problemo)
    1 USB port on the back

    Mounted in a very large Gateway 2000 case that I pulled a nasty P3 board out of.

    Leave a comment:


  • Mad-Mike
    replied
    To me, a Tweener is anything 80486 and up. I consider the 486 era in general the perfect midline between a vintage and a modern PC - here is why....

    - A 486 is just about as at home running PC/XT/AT era apps with Turbo off or Moslo or other tools of that type, as it is running Windows 2000 Professional with various hacks to allow it to do modern things

    - A 486 can take/bake Optical Media, modern Hard Disks (SATA to IDE adapters, DDOs), ZIP Drives, Floppies, Bernoulli drives, IDE Floppies, Superdisks....all depends on the 486. Even USB is possible via USB Floppy emulators or a 486 with a PCI Expansion bus on the motherboard. With hard disk caddies with large hard disks, the skies and the core of classic PC computing are availible for your choosing.

    - 486's run between 16MHz (rare) to 160MHz (Overclocked AMD 5x86 133), they overlap the performance of the 386 DX-40 and the early Pentiums, giving them a very wide swath of compatibility

    - With a powerful graphics card, or some software hacks, or if someone took up programming enough, some modern internet and web-based features would be possible on such hardware

    - It's new enough to work with Windows 2000 Professional, which can and will play nicely over TCP/IP with Windows 10 both ways - though it also can be connected to over Windows 10 TCP/IP using Windows 9x, Windows for Workgroups, and even Microsoft LAN Manager for DOS, as well as other networking technologies availible through BSD, Unix, Linux, and so fourth.

    - They are old enough to be manually configured for weird old software, but some are new enough

    - More recent examples (SBCs aimed at Industrial Applications) offer the correct performance/power for retro-computing with some of the conveniences of some modern systems

    My tweener setup is this

    250 Watt XT PSU
    SongCheer XT Clone Chassis
    AMD 486 DX4-100 with WriteBack Cache
    512K L2 Cache
    64-128MB of RAM, Parity or Non
    1.44 and 1.2MB FLoppies

    The following four hard disk caddies....
    - 15GB w/ DOS 6.22/WFWG 3.11
    - 20GB w/ Windows 95 OSR2
    - 40GB w/ Windows 98 SE
    - 80GB, which I'm planning to test out a multiple O/S load on of some kind including some kind of Lihux Distribution

    2MB S3 805 2MB Graphics VLB
    SoundBlaster AWE 64 Platinum
    VLB Super I/O Card w/ Dual IDE and
    LinkSys PnP 10mbps ISA Ethernet

    It actually lives on 24/7 365 right next to the modern system I'm typing this on running Windows 10, they "hold conversations" over the network on the regular.

    Leave a comment:


  • zombienerd
    replied
    A tweener is any machine capable to move data from modern machines to media that can be used in classic machines.

    I think my "tweener" is about as perfect as a tweener can get.

    AMD K6-2 500. 256mb Ram, USB capable
    1.44mb floppy
    1.2mb floppy
    USB Zip 100 drive
    100mbps NIC
    CD/RW Drive
    Nvidia Geforce MX200

    I have 3 hard drives installed. I use PLOP boot manager to select between True DOS 6.22, Windows 98, or Windows XP. It allows me to do everything from one box. If I need files from the internet, I'll boot up XP, and go online. It's a tad slow on a lot of sites, but gets the job done. I can then copy the files direct to floppy/zip, or if I need to do imaging, I'll copy them directly to the DOS hard drive and reboot to write the files.

    It's also a fun little retro-gaming box for late DOS and 98-era titles.

    Leave a comment:


  • Casey
    replied
    I'm guessing the XP program you're referring to is Hyperterminal, yes?

    To which Nortons 4.0 do you refer? Commander? Utilities?

    It occurred to me a while ago that telnet might prove useful in getting some of the vintage machines to talk to each other, given the paucity of networking software back then.

    Leave a comment:


  • Sandisk78
    replied
    These days I installed OS Win98 SE and win XP on my Dell XPS R400 - Pii-400/368mbram/80gb ide/16mb riva, Installed my favorite games of the ear on Win98 partition there - Red BaronII, Dark Forces II/JEdi Knight, Nox, Revenant, Midtown Madness, X-Wing Alliance - as I began to feel true nostalgia for late 1999s, early 2000s...

    But also I use to work with floppy drives - both 3.5'' 1.44 and 5-25'' 1.2mb and 360k. Even to exchange data with my Kaypro 10.

    And in Win XP there's a terminal program to exchange data with Kayro 10 by com null modem cable and also I load data by usb to win xp and then transfer with Norton 4.0 from win 98 by LPT null modem cable to my 8088 - P1 machines. So there's a lot of work for my pII ) And - mp3, photoshop, as well )

    Leave a comment:


  • Chuck(G)
    replied
    Heck a decent P4 can do that--even support ISA cards.

    Leave a comment:


  • krebizfan
    replied
    Tweener: An excuse to keep a Pentium II/III around.

    A good tweener should have the ability to read older floppies and connect directly to an older system through programs like Laplink while also having the performance to handle modern Ethernet, USB drives, and even writing optical drives. Mine never gets as much usage as a tweener as I planned but it still serves as a disk imager and late 90s game system.

    Leave a comment:

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