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Without Me You're Nothing: The Essential Guide to Home Computers

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41 review for Without Me You're Nothing: The Essential Guide to Home Computers

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kevinf

    I read this book back in the 1980s as a teen. Still have it, and lately I've been on a retro-computer kick so I've re-read this. Hard to categorize this book -- it's a bit of philosophy and ruminations, introduction to computer basics, very brief intro to BASIC the language. A chapter introducing structured programming -- which was interesting, as I've seen a lot of references in this era to structured programming but had read no explanation of what, exactly, that means. Herbert makes an effort I read this book back in the 1980s as a teen. Still have it, and lately I've been on a retro-computer kick so I've re-read this. Hard to categorize this book -- it's a bit of philosophy and ruminations, introduction to computer basics, very brief intro to BASIC the language. A chapter introducing structured programming -- which was interesting, as I've seen a lot of references in this era to structured programming but had read no explanation of what, exactly, that means. Herbert makes an effort to explain what you can do with a computer, but even after reading those parts it's not clear. He's positively obsessed with stressing -- over and over again -- that computers cannot think and do not possess real human intelligence. Perhaps that was an issue back then .... This was written at an interesting moment in computer history (published 1980). It was still assumed back then that John Q Public would be writing his own programs, hence the attention to BASIC and programming. There were Apple II's and Commodore PET's, but not yet the IBM PC. Herbert doesn't recommend brands, in fact the Buyer's Guide sections won't tell you to buy an Apple II but do go into a lot of unexpected detail explaining device handlers and ROM loaders. If you were a person in 1980 looking to buy a computer the buyer's guide would ... probably not have been too helpful. And would certainly have been rendered obsolete within a year or two. But there is a lot of the delightfully archaic stuff that I enjoy from such old books -- "Before you buy any system you should ask if it allows for the correction of typing mistakes". Amazingly, I don't think he includes any passages about how there'll be a computer in the kitchen so that the wife can use it to organize & display recipes. In the end, no reason to read this unless you're just on a retro-computer geek trip, but it does have its own curious, minor little place in the pantheon of computer history and culture.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Curtis Roberts

    During the summer of 1988, I read this book because I was interested on where technology was going. I had just been separated from the United States Navy and was recently laid off from ALM, Inc.. A defense contractor for the U.S. Navy, Naval Air Systems Command with the company immediately folding due to the loss of contracts. I was immediately hired by another company with contracts with the Department of the Army and had to know something about computers in an office environment. I had also co During the summer of 1988, I read this book because I was interested on where technology was going. I had just been separated from the United States Navy and was recently laid off from ALM, Inc.. A defense contractor for the U.S. Navy, Naval Air Systems Command with the company immediately folding due to the loss of contracts. I was immediately hired by another company with contracts with the Department of the Army and had to know something about computers in an office environment. I had also completed my first year at Strayer University then Strayer College where I graduated Masters of Science in Information Systems 20 years later. From the various passages in this book, looking back and thinking on our human relationships with computing technology rings true to the Title, "Without Me Your Nothing". Everything we are today is based on our interaction with computing technology from the cars we drive, to our personal communications devices to our physicians diagnosis, begs the question, what are we without computing technologies today?

  3. 4 out of 5

    James

    I have no idea to what degree some of the information in this book is still relevant nearly fourty years later, I had one programming class in highschool and I remember very little of it. However it appears that the witty comments and historical anecdotes make if far more interesting. I largely read this hoping to find any interesting insights into the mind of Herbert and I got a few tidbits, most of which are closer to the beginning of the book for those of you reading it for similar reasons.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Judsen

  5. 5 out of 5

    Eddy

  6. 5 out of 5

    Phil

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jerry

  8. 4 out of 5

    Ubikuberalles

  9. 4 out of 5

    Bob R Bogle

  10. 4 out of 5

    Kevin Xu

  11. 5 out of 5

    Christopher

  12. 4 out of 5

    Joseph Vintimille T. Askaris

  13. 4 out of 5

    Marcin Wichary

  14. 4 out of 5

    Hank Hoeft

  15. 4 out of 5

    Tony DeBat

  16. 5 out of 5

    Louise BDGG

  17. 5 out of 5

    colleen

  18. 4 out of 5

    Joshua Horvath

  19. 4 out of 5

    Gladstone

  20. 5 out of 5

    Junius Johnson

  21. 4 out of 5

    BookDB

  22. 4 out of 5

    Andrew Schmidt

  23. 4 out of 5

    Inithello

  24. 4 out of 5

    Viktor Shchedrin

  25. 4 out of 5

    Brian

  26. 4 out of 5

    Erik

  27. 5 out of 5

    Patrick Smith

  28. 4 out of 5

    Willow

  29. 5 out of 5

    P K Morris

  30. 5 out of 5

    Pat Winter

  31. 4 out of 5

    Jacob

  32. 5 out of 5

    Tovio Gandahar

  33. 5 out of 5

    James

  34. 4 out of 5

    Joel

  35. 4 out of 5

    Rhet Toombs

  36. 5 out of 5

    Mark Gaulton

  37. 5 out of 5

    Andy McFadden

  38. 5 out of 5

    D Schmudde

  39. 5 out of 5

    ErrBookErrDay

  40. 5 out of 5

    Fullcycle

  41. 4 out of 5

    Nicole Flowers Frye

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