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Ping 218: Impossible engines, Virtual body hacks, Surface Pro 3, Revisiting an old friend

19 minutes, 11 seconds


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Hey everybody! Mark and Joey here this week to bring you news about space, Surface, streetcars, seriously old websites, and everything else that we're pinging each other about!

[03:14] NASA tested an impossible space engine and it somehow worked
[05:28] Surface Pro 3 Available in UK/Australia and more later this month.
[07:13] Stay up-to-date with Internet Explorer
[10:01] Forza Horizon 2 Car Reveal – Check Out the Week Three Cars
[11:45] Virtual body-hack lets you become someone else
[14:04] Wi-Fi strength revealed in physical space
[14:54] Go Back to 1994's Microsoft Website

Question of the week: What piece of technology are you missing from 20 years ago?


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  • I miss CompuServe, Prodigy, and AOL disks in the mail...

    I miss Baud Rates, Parity and Stop Bits, and IRQs... (especially when trying to play Doom with someone over the telephone line)

    I miss double-speed CD-ROM drives and Sound Blaster cards

    I miss EGA and VGA and 14" monitors (the rich people bought 15 inchers)

    I miss 40MB hard drives and 4 MB of memory

    I miss 386SX and 486DX

    I will say though life was much simpler back then - video game controllers had 4 directions and 2 buttons...

    And if things didn't work you could call a person and not have to tweet for support.

    And I think all of the cool kids wore orange shirts back then...some with their collars up.

  • JamesCurtispiercove microsoft ux dude

    @Virtual body hack - I believe they had a futurist version in the movie Gamer.

    @1994 - Gopher, Netscape, UseNet, IRC... those were good times in the web world.  I miss my Super Nintendo and Sega Genesis.  I survived the console wars.  ;)

  • I miss the Creative sound card/phone combination. Back in 1992/93 I created a VB app that took the caller Id name and number and showed a popup window showing those details plus location: city and province/state.  It could playback a wav message for a specific caller and record a message from the caller.  
    The caller id info would be sent via UDP to a remote computer and popup there.  When I moved from Saskatchewan to Taiwan I had the call info from to my parents home sent to me. When I was working once, I saw when a friend from Colorado call me... of course I was in Taiwan.

  • dan_tdtower Surface Fan

    I get nostalgic for the games I played back then. Doom over coaxial network with friends and the original X-COM are at the top of the list.

    I also miss the CS dept computer lab where I spent much of my time back then with its rows of UNIX terminals and a person on the other side of a little window who would give you the code you printed out.

    But mostly I miss the bright eyed optimism of youth I had back then when so many roads yet untraveled lay before me. 

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