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Time Travel

Went to retrieve the old History of Customs Computer Systems. I originally wrote it as an essay for an unit entitled MBA642 Information Technology and the Organisation. The intention was to keep it up to date. It had been updated since then, but not (according to Sandy) for nearly ten years.

Couldn't read it. It was in a format that Sandy couldn't fathom.

Then I remember. I used to write everything in MacWrite format. Later I upgraded to MacWrite II. So all the MBA documents are in that (now totally obselete) format. During the Old Thesis I switched to MS Word because, sadly, MacWrite II kept losing my footnotes.

Sandy doesn't have MacWrite II, but it is available on disk. So all I have to do is restore it and run it. Right? Wrong. Sandy cannot run it. I don't think it ever worked on a PowerPC. Damn, I say. If only I had an ancient computer that could read this.

Wait a minute. I do have an ancient computer! I still have Julie, an old MacIntosh SE. Yes, a compact Mac! And yes, incredibly, it still works, although it is nearly twenty years old and hasn't been powered up for months. It doesn't even have a keyboard or mouse so it has to share with Sandy - but Mac keyboards and mice were hot swappable even then. It didn't have MacWrite II either, only the original MacWrite but when I copied it over from Sandy, lo, it did run and could read the old files and convert them into text format!

At this point, I'm quitting while I'm ahead. Buy lottery ticket tomorrow. Also convert all the documents while I still can.



( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
25th Oct, 2005 21:01 (UTC)
One reason why I write everything in plain text whenever I possibly can.
2nd Nov, 2005 12:31 (UTC)
I have MacWrite II (it came on the used MacPlus I got way back when & I've kept copying it to subsequent macs) installed on my iMac (not very compatibly- if I try to open more than one document without quitting in between odd and annoying things happen). I've found that I can open the documents from MSWord (sometimes formatting goes really weird, though). Must convert at least the important-to-me stuff someday.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )