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Why You Should Program for Old Computers
May 23rd, 2022 at 5:00 PM by Kugee
Ever since I was a dumb fat kid, I had always wanted to become a computer programmer. But even as I learned to lose weight, programming still felt like a sort of arcane magic I couldn't quite grasp. The main problem I had was wanting to chase a large goal too soon while not really knowing of all the essentials I needed to know beforehand. It doesn't help that many tutorials tend to be structured in such a way where they tell you the exact steps to program a specific function rather than help you understand how it works.
So how is it that I managed to go from only writing extremely niche programs sparingly to creating a full-fledged game for MS-DOS in a little over three months? It's not as simple as it sounds, but it does boil down to a few things: start changing the approach from trying to get every little thing in all at once to focusing on refining the most important things beforehand, and then build on top of that. In order to be able to execute this effectively, one has to think like a computer. I know nothing of the farces of object-oriented programming or fancy features of most of the heavyweight languages out there these days, but I can tell you that trying to think more about what is being stored in computer memory is the first step to leveraging it with exacting precision.
Razorback Covers the Windows 95 Launch Event
April 3rd, 2022 at 6:05 PM by Kugee
The Internet Archive link to this video is available at the bottom of the article.
Just yesterday, a higher quality version of Steve Ballmer's overly enthusitastic sales pitch for Windows 1.0 surfaced thanks to recent archival efforts of my friend Blue Horizon, and is available to download by itself on the Blue OS Museum. Now that the complete tape has been digitized and submitted to the Internet Archive, well... I imagine a fuckton of YouTubers will be scrambling to tell their own versions of the story in what amounts to glorified PowerPoint presentations (and beg you to subscribe to their channels) pretty soon, but I'm going to give you the real deal here.
Even for how earth-shattering the Windows 95 launch was, somehow, a lot of people who actually attended it must have fuzzy memories about the whole thing. It's been buzzed about so much in the press like "whoa, what's like like, uh... show business?" and I've seen others talk about it as if it was this really weird joke where Steve Ballmer's dancing like a madman... but apart from that Windows 1.0 "commercial" reused in the official tape, I don't think I saw Steve Ballmer anywhere in the video! Just goes to show you how much of this seems to have been forgotten... but it is no longer. At last, the untold story can be told.
The Coexistence of Old and New Technology
February 6th, 2022 at 6:05 PM by Kugee
This world is not what I used to know it as. Even though computers are becoming so powerful that they could very well last forever in everyday usage, somehow, new methods are being developed to accelerate the obsoletion of five year old products. See that new, exiciting, revolutionary iteration of some brick telephone? Forget it, it'll be trash in a while. Even then, it's as if absolutely everything has to be so phone-centric now. Want to do this thing? Download an "app" that takes up precious space on your telephone! Do you need to get tested or schedule an appointment? Dude bro, just push fake buttons on a touch screen!
It's as if one day, future generations will not have any concept of non-capacitive buttons. If that's going to be the case, though, they'll probably also not ever know what it was like to compute in an environment that wasn't outright sandboxed. It really doesn't have to end up this way, though. In fact, for a while, it didn't seem it was headed in that direction. There was a brief time around the late 2000's when the trendiest techno bling coexisted peacefully with the tried and true solutions of yesterday. It was beautiful; there was something for everyone.
Forgotten DarkBASIC Projects
December 2nd, 2021 at 7:15 AM by Kugee
For those not ready to get their hands dirty with a tried and true programming language like C or C++, several solutions designed with game development in mind emerged in the 2000's. These products were very popular with amateurs wanting to focus more on getting their game design down rather than worrying so much about programming all the essential functions responsible for putting it all together.
I remember using Game Maker at one point for creating a rather generic horizontal STG, that was sometime back in 2008... but I mainly just used the sample 1945 clone for reference, didn't think to try referring to one of those tutorials on YouTube. Plus, since I was a full time Mac user at that point and didn't have Boot Camp or VMware loaded on anything, I had to do all my work on a shared living room computer, meaning I didn't have as much time as I would've liked to for working on these sorts of things.
October 5th, 2021 at 12:00 AM by Kugee
It's been one year since Razorback went live. It started with the simple intent of providing a completely static website, but as it grew, it deviated a lot from its original vision; it's slightly dynamic, it learned to adapt to much older browsers, and it implemented a very barebones form of tracking - one which just counts unique views for each page based on the IP sent by every web browser.
As the site grew, I've still completely refrained from using cookies and client-side scripts. Is there a benefit to scripting? Possibly, but scripts are so heavily abused that I always have to make sure I use a script blocker, and would rather just keep my pages as lightweight as possible rather than go through the trouble of implementing scripts.