Oracle FAQ Your Portal to the Oracle Knowledge Grid

Home -> Community -> Mailing Lists -> Oracle-L -> Re: OT -- suggestions to ensure nerdiness in potential IT staff

Re: OT -- suggestions to ensure nerdiness in potential IT staff

From: Pat Hildebrand <>
Date: Wed, 01 Aug 2001 19:10:50 -0700
Message-ID: <>

I think this is very dependent on one's age and maybe geographic location. Okay, I'll start off by showing my age. In 1981 I wasn't in high school - my older son was.

I wasn't a ham but back, I think as a pre-teen, we used to make "telegraphs" out of a piece of scrap wood, a flashlight bulb, a battery, a few nails, a little wire, and a strip of metal cut from a tin can to practice Morse code (I don't remember any of it now).

I had to pass a slide rule test in college but in those days so did everyone else at Harvey Mudd.

When I saw the question about boot disks I figured that the answer would be very dependent on the computer because I know there were computers at that time that didn't use disks. However, the computer that I got in 1981 required a boot disk.

In fact that computer brings to mind a few other questions from that time. Before the introduction of the IBM PC, what was considered the operating system for business micro computers? What manufacturer made a 5 1/4 floppy drive that used a format with 100 tracks per inch (they actually had more data on a single sided disk than IBM had on their double sided disk)? What is the difference between hard sectored and soft sectored floppies? What did the above mentioned drive use?

Some other questions that come to mind that are not so tied into a specific machine are:

What does APL stand for? What was very bad practice in APL that other languages use? What was used instead?

What is the language that uses a turtle for teaching children about computers? What language was it based on?

Or how about something from the days of main frame tapes that has come back to haunt me lately. What is an IBM standard label tape? What about it might help in identifying what is on the tape and where it came from?



Please see the official ORACLE-L FAQ:

Author: Pat Hildebrand
Fat City Network Services    -- (858) 538-5051  FAX: (858) 538-5051
San Diego, California        -- Public Internet access / Mailing Lists
To REMOVE yourself from this mailing list, send an E-Mail message to: (note EXACT spelling of 'ListGuru') and in the message BODY, include a line containing: UNSUB ORACLE-L (or the name of mailing list you want to be removed from). You may also send the HELP command for other information (like subscribing). Received on Wed Aug 01 2001 - 21:10:50 CDT

Original text of this message