The PC Era


And so the tale continues:

1984 and I started work with a organization that had a vision, and a future, A. W. Baulderstone Pty. Ltd.

AWB had a vision, they wanted to have what they called distributed computing available everywhere, this was unheard of at that time, and to do this they wanted to have personal computers. I was so very lucky that I happened to apply for a job that I probably would have paid to have. Study, persistence and luck put me in a position to do exactly what I always wanted to do. I had the opportunity to create a future for business using computer networking and technology, it was not easy because we were pioneers and treading on untested grounds, at least for management.

In the early days at AWB we had the direction to use Advanced Revelation a PICK database system for DOS computers. Today I don’t think anyone remembers it, but at the time when hardware costs far exceeded software it was very cost effective as it used variable length data files. I programed for a year or so, then we found a genius that far exceeded my capabilities. But who cares now, when we can be as sloppy as we want. In the early days at AWB we were one of the first in Australia to use Novell/Gateway networking, which was very primitive compared to Novell today, and long before Microsoft got into networking. We either made our own computers or by management direction bought really poor performing IBM desktops and portables.. the size of sewing machines (or bigger). Back then I preferred the far superior Compaq PC’s. Networking was all proprietary there were few real standards, we had to understand everything, all devices had to have new drivers which we wrote. There was no such thing as a standard Serial or parallel device. Computing was not for the general population, and we were all experts.

Then came the OS2 era, and Token Ring Networking, it was a marvelous beginning, but not to last long. Token Ring which is far superior to Ethernet was proprietary to IBM and never made it to Taiwan for mass production and was superseded by cheap ethernet with all its inherent problems. In the same vein, OS2 collapsed under commercial pressure to Windows. Its a long story, and we were there to watch it all. The mid-80’s were a technologist dream time, and era of knowledge and achievement. The early 90’s a time of implementation and resourcefulness, if you wanted it, you invented it.

Then our world changed, computing became the world of communications. The internet, the thing that is changing the world. Information became everything, the time for engineers and invention changed to a world of “Knowing how to find information”

To be continued: