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44

When starting out, I would like to keep this definition as open as possible so we don't start off by flogging unsuspecting users with some pedantic definition of retro… at least until we see an actual encroachment of those "we didn't really intend this" problems in actual practice. I like the general concept of Retrocomputing according to Wikipedia. ...


33

Usage of emulation software should only be on-topic to the extent that it's related to retrocomputing. For example, "I can't get SimCity to play sound in DosBox" is on-topic because it has a corresponding non-emulated question: "I can't get SimCity to play sound on my IBM-compatible". However, "I can't get DosBox to play sound on Windows 10" is off-topic, ...


23

I think we should be inclusive of computing history questions here, there's no other real suitable place on the network and there's plenty to be learned from the history of various companies that can give insights into the hardware designs etc.


18

Yes There's no clear distinction between a games console and a home computer. The NES, for instance, was alternatively marketed as both a computer and an entertainment system in various markets, and it ran BASIC. As such, technical questions about the Atari 2600 are just as useful as technical questions about the Commodore 64. Attempting to arbitrarily ...


16

No. As much as I like Programming Puzzles and Code Golf, this site is not the place to ask such questions. They are not a Q&A site, and we are, which is a big indication that the scopes are different. Your proposed challenges would be on-topic for PPCG. If you write it well enough, you can only accept answers from languages that were created within a ...


16

Regardless of what technology is being used to modernize/repair/upgrade an otherwise clearly retro computer, I would assume any question relating to this is on topic for this site. Modernizing a retro computer with modern technology is, in my opinion, preservation of that computer. Even if modern technology is only used to make it more convenient to exchange ...


16

If a question doesn't interest you, ignore it and move on. Different people have different opinions about what they want to see on this site. There is a significant amount of questions about old games and gaming consoles. I have absolutely no interest in that, and personally feel those questions belong on Arqade. However, I just let those questions go. ...


15

It's still got 5+% of the desktop market share. Regardless of how old it is, I think that pretty well disqualifies it.


15

We have a tag for this (old-hardware-adaptation), for which none of the questions are closed, so the consensus appears to be: Yes


14

The last time something like this was asked was almost three years ago. There was almost overwhelming support for history questions being on-topic during the very first few days of the site's existence. A couple of months later, however, there was a Computing History proposal on Area 51. A question was asked about what to do about it, and there was much ...


13

I'd say it's off-topic. On the one hand, such meetups are of interest to retro enthusiasts (so as you say, it's not totally unrelated). On the other hand though, answers to this question would have a limited geographical scope, and probably a short half-life — some meetups are long-lasting, but many aren't, and the information on them tends to move around ...


13

My opinion is no, I do not think questions which attract "lists" of answers are constructive and should be considered off-topic. I will say this: If the community believes these questions are on-topic, then the posts should be locked and a Community Wiki model should be used. See The Definitive C Book Guide and List and The Definitive C++ Book Guide and ...


13

I’d argue that Windows 2000 questions are prima facie on-topic. Quoting Robert Cartaino’s “foundational” answer to What constitutes "retro"?, Retrocomputing is the use of older computer hardware and software in modern times. Following that premise, I would consider a retro-system as anything that a reasonable person would not consider ...


12

The key is, where are the experts? If your question is specifically about retro hardware or software, ask here. If your question is about generic hardware or software that's useful to interact with retro hardware or software, but can also be used for many other things, ask on a site such as Super User, Stack Overflow, etc. For example, suppose you're ...


12

It should be inherently on-topic as these types of questions are on-topic for our site. But these questions should be made sure they are not like: When was {product} first released? or In what year was the most retro machinery bought and etc. I can't think of good examples so I'll let the community post some history questions and decide for ...


12

Yes Parallel SCSI was used and commonly found in retro computers like the Amiga, the Atari ST, the original Apple Macintosh series among others retro workstations. The SCSI Parallel standard was standardized in 1986 which is pretty old by today's standards However... We there is now newer SCSI standard that uses serial connections and differ drastically ...


12

I would say yes, definitely. Communications and networking have always been an integral part of computing. Therefore, they should be welcome here. We do have questions regarding protocols; Econet and Novell Netware to name just two. so, bring them on.


11

Generally speaking, we are trying to forego a lot of hypothetical-problem discussion before they become a problem in actual practice. But for now, I would keep the definition of "computing" equally broad to our initial definition of "retro.". If the hardware is generally related to (and of interest to) folks interested in "computers", I would allow it. ...


11

Let's try it. Since the expertise of this site lies largely in maintaining and restoring old hardware including video games, I would be inclined to at least try it and see how well it fits. I don't suspect there will be a huge deluge of pinball-restoration questions to annoy anyone who might not be intense about the subject, but based on posts like this ...


11

To contrast with Raffzahn's answer (since you always need at least two points of view!) I think these questions should stay. Getting software running on modern operating systems is no different to getting a ZX Spectrum to run with a modern television; there's no point trying to preserve software if nobody can use it. I would consider questions about ...


11

I'm not sure if this type of question would be too broad. After all, if you post a picture and ask "What's this?", there is only one correct answer. We already have a handful of questions under the tag identify-this-game, as discussed here: Is asking for the title of a retro game on-topic? There's also been a couple of questions asking to identify old ...


11

Yes It's retro, and computing-related. We've got questions asking for manuals and documentation; I don't see how this is different. Ignore the diamond, please. Look at the vote counter instead. I'm not an authoritative source.


10

Rather than 'where do I find' it might be better to ask 'how do I find' or even 'is there any public domain resource for'. I think the question is in topic, but the site presumably needs to in a good position legally.


10

What are we going to do? Typically nothing. Proposals are only ideas, not sites; and that one doesn't seem to be going anywhere. The community-driven process of Area 51 has a vetting effect to determine if there is a broad interest in a site, and the (lack of) interest in that particular idea is pretty much playing itself out. I will sometimes close a ...


10

Old Standards questions I personally consider on-topic on this site. The question you are referring to is, however, off-topic in my opinion for a different reason, because it mixes possibilities and assumptions from new standards (Unicode) with old standards (classic ASCII) - That is off-topic, in my opinion.


10

We have other questions tagged history which ask about other obscure systems and devices. I see no reason why you couldn't ask this. There may be someone out there who remembers this filing system. The page that you linked claims that it is supported by Windows Mobile. If that is true, then I would say it is still on-topic for Retrocomputing as Windows ...


10

I think it is helpful to consider this question in light of our statistics on Area 51, and the fact the site is stuck in "Beta Purgatory". The site is statistically on the right track, EXCEPT for the fact that it does not receive nearly enough questions. This is why we won't escape Beta. We may have pigeon-holed the site with the currently dominant history ...


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