@calvin did they evenshow stuff like this this on American TV or was it made for internal use at sales conferences etc?
From what I vaguely remember of these they would only be affordable to a medium size business as a large capital investment, and folk who make such decisions tend not to be swayed by cheesy pop rap videos (even if it *was* the 1990s!)
19:56 < coryw> which has like datasheet templates and a copy of the Gill Sans font for the Octane
19:58 < coryw> to address the affordability issue: Whether or not this is true of HP in that particular era, SGI and Sun did have on-file $5000 workstation configs at various points, and it wouldn't surprise me if some showed up in university bookstores.
@calvin @vfrmedia Sorry, I hope all these replies make any sense. To talk to the $5000 (US) price point, it was more common later on, here's a good article that talks about the experience of one of those baseline configs in 1998 http://www.osnews.com/story/5743/My_Sun_Ultra_5_And_Me_A_Geek_Odyssey
SGI had a $5000 O2 config meant for web authoring in 1996-1997, and I'm sure there was a $5000 Indy but it was meant as a diskless netboot station, booting off an origin and being front-end to an Origin.
@vfrmedia @calvin To add to the affordability thing, I don't know what student lending was like in the '90s, but I know in the '00s (I was a student 06-12) it would have been pretty easy to get your hands on financing to buy $5-10,000 worth of computer. I had been trying to justify a Mac Pro, I knew plenty of people who did have around that much hardware, whether for a particular need for for gaming.
TBH most UK students got a £300-£500 laptop running Windows XP/7 or if they were especially unlucky Vista. I think Redmond heavily subsided MS Office provided you could prove you were attending some kind of college/uni (they *did* have some validation, probably a big list of colleges and unis and schools that the UK govt sent them which would of course be used or marketing) which is why MS has such a stranglehold to this day on UK academic circles.
One of the other things that improved a *lot* that means most students aren't running out buying expensive hardware is remote access to applications. My school provided a 24/7 computer lab up to this last year (TBH I'm still angry we don't have one any more) probably under the justification that anyone can get a netbook and use VPN+RDP to get the apps they need, which while technically true is sort of not the point.
@coryw @calvin netbooks have not been widely sold for a few years, chromebooks (if they do RDP at all) are sources of distracting adware/adtech and a *small* laptop is bloody expensive (more so than a large one)
As an engineer I too dislike it when tech is used merely to *reduce* costs and/or human access to a useful thing (such as education) rather than increase that access..
@vfrmedia @calvin I would argue that any small atom-based laptop from the past few years is "basically a netbook, even if not in name." There are usually a few on sale at Walmart/Target or Best Buy. Things like the Lenovo 100 and some of the lower Inspiron 3000 series, especially in the ever popular 2/32 config.
Heck, I'd say that the Surface 3 toes the line in the same way the original RT did.
@coryw @calvin ah, we don't get these quite as often here in the UK (British Walmart is called Asda and I've not seen a whole computer sold there for years (they did use to sell them) and when I do see a computer in a mainstream store its usually a 15,6" "family" laptop often used as desktop replacement. Might be cultural thing, or simply that profit margins are so thin the mfrs aren't interested in non US market due to the extra keyboards required)