Monday, July 06, 2009

QUBE redux

News that the city may get cable competition at some point.

Remember: QUBE TV had city on the cutting edge in '80s. Seriously, if you still have two coax cables in your home it's because of the high bandwidth requirements of interactive TV in the city a decade before the Internet would reach the retail consumer and even before some of us were 'surfing' with Archie or Veronica*. I argue QUBE is counterintuitively the reason the city later lagged behind the latest upgrades for years because it didn't need the additional bandwidth for so long. So basically everyone leapfrogged the city until just a few years ago for things like cable Internet or even digital cable I bet.

* I'm feeling old these days. I wonder what proportion of readers here even remember life before the WWW?


Anonymous MH said...

Thanks for explaining the two cables. I once asked the cable guy and got no clear answer.

As to your last question course, I can remember when personal computers did not come with hard drives and you'd have to switch floppies to run programs. In fact, I learned to type on an IBM Selectric because computers were much too rare to have enough for a whole class to use.

Monday, July 06, 2009 5:06:00 PM  
Blogger Conservative Mountaineer said...

When I was in NC attending graduate school, I remember using a service/providor called "The Source" or something like that (pre-CompuServe) in mid-1985 to transfer data files and e-mails with client in Pittsburgh... a 300-baud modem.. yowza.. that was fast! Definitely pre-www.

Yes. I'm old. To many of you. :)

Monday, July 06, 2009 6:21:00 PM  
Blogger Jason Togyer said...

One thing I remember about life pre-Web is the difficulty in trying to get an out-of-town phone number.

Man, trying to track someone down could take all afternoon, $10 in toll charges and a trip to the library ...

These days, about half of the phone numbers you get from online databases are wrong, but as I recall, "Directory Assistance" wasn't much better in the good ol' days.

Monday, July 06, 2009 7:17:00 PM  
Anonymous MH said...

I can remember shareware before the web. I'd write to an address with a check to cover the cost of postage and floppies and they'd mail back the disks.

Monday, July 06, 2009 11:07:00 PM  
Blogger EdHeath said...

Ah, the good old days of the Minitel.

Well, OK, I'm not French and have only seen the Minitel in pictures, but I do remember using the mainframe at school to write papers (definitely a step up from the typewriter) while my wealthier classmates used the school approved Osborne to write things. One fellow used an Apple II for a seminar paper. He had a choppy dot matrix printer, but he was able to produce graphs, kind of a step up from the rest of us.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009 6:31:00 AM  
Blogger Katie said...

I remember QUBE TV from Warner cable. My family used to play some weekly interactive quiz show on QUBE. That's how I got my 10 inch black and white tv for college.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009 6:36:00 PM  

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