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Odd Lots


  1. Sam'l Bassett says:

    The only three resstaurants I remember:

    Top of the Rock

    One I DIDN’T see:

    Kungsholm (Swedish, in Rogers Park)

    1. The Arthur Treacher’s that they show was the one on Harlem north of Touhy. It was on the way from my house to Carol’s house. I saw it, ahem, a LOT. My grandmother liked the Pie Pan (where Peterson cut the Edens) and we went there with her a lot. I don’t think I was at more than eight or ten of the others, though.

  2. Erbo says:

    Not only have there been three million Raspberry Pis sold, the Foundation recently had a chance to show it off to Her Majesty, the Queen. And Eben caught some flak from the Duke of Edinburgh for not wearing a tie. šŸ˜‰

  3. Bob Fegert says:

    The Raspberry Pi is a little bit like a modern day version of what the 1970’s Cosmac Elf was… a cheap way to play with an actual computer.

    Except the Pi is much cheaper at 35.00 than the Elf was at 80.00 in the 70’s. And the Elf was a kit.

    The Pi can actually be used for many useful projects… the Elf was a fun 8-bit computer with MANY limitations.

    The Pi is already legendary…it will be a very long time before it is forgotten.

  4. Michael Black says:

    The reason the Cosmic Elf traveled so well was it used the RCA 1802. That CPU made it easy to load RAM without any effort, so no complicated front panel was needed and no ROM needed for loading. That meant you needed the CPU, ram, and some buffers, making it an incredibly easy thing to wire up.

    You didn’t get much of a computer, not with the original amount of ram, but you could built it and get about the equivalent of a Kim-1.

    At the time, 1976, having a computer was still an end in itself, and yet building one generally was work. I remember a Godbout ad selling an 8080, ram and some peripheral for about fifty dollars in the fall of 1975, but as someone pointed out, no way to use it without a monitor in rom. So you could build hardware with a complicated front panel, or have a rom monitor (which you couldn’t write and test yourself without a working computer) and need a terminal. The cosmic elf was easy and cheap compared to that.

    The raspberry Pi is like a Commodore 64, a full blown, albeit “simple”, computer that is cheap and includes high level languages. It has nothing to do with building a computer, or getting some sort of computer, it’s about something else. Note I could put Linux on endless scrap computers and get the same effect, just not in that small package.


    1. People still call the 1802 “weird” but it was amazing in how easily you could “head-assemble” opcodes in pure binary. It had 16 16-bit GP registers, all of which could act as program counters, making subroutine call and return as quick as a single instruction to go, and a single instruction to come back. (It also supported conventional stack-based call and return.) There were no bit fields smaller than 4 bits, so it was easy to think in hex digits. For an assembly code first-timer there was nothing like it anywhere.

      One of the unappreciated advantages of the 1802 is that the brilliant Joe Weisbecker wrote that great little user guide and much else about the processor, making it even more accessible to noobs like me. It was easy to wire-wrap and easy to build memory systems for; my last iteration had 10 banks of 256 bytes, and was big enough so that I had begun writing an OS for it, to be loaded from paper tape. I had an OAE paper tape reader. The problem was not reading the tapes but writing them, a nut I never cracked. ASR33s with punches were outside my budget as a 24-year-old Xerox machine repairman.

  5. Rich Rostrom says:

    Iā€™m a little surprised that I had been to so few.

    Why? You only lived in Chcago for about 23 years, most of that as a child. And the list is spread out over a very large metropolis, most of which you’ve never set foot it. Many of these places closed when you were a child.

    I’ve lived here my whole life; I’ve eaten at 28, and remember seeing another 49. (There are some which I remember passing many times, but would never go into, like “Ladners – The Home of Cohasset Punch”.)

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