8-Bit Software Online Conversion

The History of 8BS Article. I would like to comment on the conclusions of this article which was a light weight attack on the Archimedes and a somewhat defeatist attitude to the takeover of computing by PC compatibles. As a 486 PC owner and an Archimedes owner I feel I can compare and contrast both fairly. I certainly understand the attitude that perhaps children should be taught to use PCs in favour of any other system as they are widely used in the adult business world. The PC is definitely the safe bet in computer terms. This however doesn't mean its the best computer or the best in value for money terms. I recently sold an old Opus 386 through an ad which I placed in Micromart. I posted it off when the cheque had cleared. It arrived in good condition but unfortunately the purchaser not being familar with PCs had got into problems, although I supplied the PC with full manuals which in this case was a ring bound manual about the Opus and DOS plus a getting started with Windows book. He had erased or modified the system files and corrupted the CMOS settings. It was sent fully set up and soon after arrival he had altered or removed many important files. Plus he had got out the system setup disks and used them. There wasn't a lot I could do for him as he was 200 miles away or more. Anyway after pestering people locally who owned PCs he managed to set it up. My point is, not only are PCs not user-friendly they're postively user-hostile. Apple were pleased when an independent body in the United States assessed Macintosh computers as far more efficient. The Macintosh models didn't need ultrafast hard-drives or processors, just an operating system which was more logical and friendly and didn't create problems for the user. The PC compatible is a mess and should be always cheaper than computers like the Archimedes or the Macintosh. The Archimedes is a joy to use. Its the best computer I have ever owned. I can honestly say that the PC is about ten times as much hassle. The one major headache I have had with my Archimedes is trying to get an Apple CD300 CDROM drive working with an Atomwide printer/SCSI interface. I have never achieved this but in all fairness I don't blame the Archimedes at all, it's all down to Atomwide and their lousy driver software. Atomwide are a very nice company that sadly has a poor product to sell. The PC however has given me so many problems with viruses, configuring, doublespace, printer drivers needed for different programs. I'd also better mention that I bought a SCSI interface to work with the Apple CD300 for the PC and it worked first time no problems whatsoever. My PC's hard-drive has just been sent off as its duff, a 540 meg Maxtor model. Again this has nothing to do with the PC as such as any computer that I fitted it to would have had the same problem. But in summary forget the specs and software availability, go for the Archimedes; its a wiser choice if you value your sanity. Also at the end of the day if you have any computer which you're happy with which does what you ask of it, why upgrade? There are many people still happy with their Beebs, Electrons, Spectrums, C64s and Amstrads etc.