Peter's site blog
Ultra rare Texas Instruments Portable Professional Computer (PPC) 
Saturday, November 14, 2015, 11:00 PM
Posted by Administrator
These "non-compatible" PCs are almost forgotten, but there were many interesting portable ones, like the Sirius Victor "Luggable", which has a very sophisticated video card (for its time) but with a very strange disk format (similar to the Commodore GCR format).
And there was also a 8086 portable computer from Texas Instruments - they didn't produced only the TI 99/4(A) and their famous calculators in the eighties, but also these non-compatible PCs.
Derived from the Texas Instruments PC, the TI PPC was the one you could try to carry with you.
It can read IBM PC formatted disk (that's really an advantage) but that was the only obvious common thing. The graphics had 720x300 pixels (NOT Hercules Graphics compatible!), it has a build in (optional) COLOR MONITOR (rare!) and the computer was expandable up to 768KB RAM. Even the keyboard was different from the IBM PC !
Not only MS-DOS 2.1 was available, but also CP/M-86, UCSD-P System and Prologue.
You could be lucky if you own one, because they became very rare nowadays.

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First "Smart Watch" ever, decades before Apple Watch oder Samsung Gear 
Saturday, September 26, 2015, 08:26 PM
Posted by Administrator
Just take a look at this advertisment for the Science of Cambridge Wrist Calculator, this was really one of the first (or just the first) real smart watch with computing power - and it happened about 40 years before ! It was only available as a kit, and AFAIK it can't show the time (unless you typed in appropriate digits to show up the time) ;-)

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Genoa Super EGA can't replace an original Siemens PCD-2 CGA+MDA card 
Friday, September 18, 2015, 06:30 PM
Posted by Administrator
Meanwhile I have tried to replace my original Siemens PCD-2 graphics adapter with a (more modern) Genoa Super EGA (Modell 4880). Unfortunately even with a documentation of all dip switches and jumper, it was not possible to replace the original card, which is able to display color graphics card (CGA) and monochrome display adapter (MDA) on a monochrome monitor.
I thought I can configure the Genoa Super EGA...

... to use a monochrome monitor.

BUT NO it does not work :-(

I guess the Siemens Graphics Adapter is a very special (and rare) display adapter which is only designed to work with the Siemens Monitor. Look at the card, it has three crystal oscillators (!), which is totally unusual for dispplay adapter of 1988:

Ok, if anybody has additional suggestions how to work with that original monochrome monitor and the above mentioned Genoa Super EGA, let me know it. Switches & Jumper can be found at the "related link" below.
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Microsoft's new "Privacy Statement" and conclusions: BE WARNED 
Monday, August 10, 2015, 10:20 PM
Posted by Administrator

No, not only Microsoft is collecting data from all users. This is done also by Apple & Google.
But they didn't do it in such an amount until Windows 10 arrived....

All of the data which will be collected is just to improve your personal expirience. This means you will get tons of advertisments but these are more personalized. Or at least unwanted "suggestions". Ugly.
Many settings are present also to reduce this acquisitiveness, but most of the very new functions can't work without collecting data from you. Cortana, your new speech recognition for example. Hand writing recognition, which adds also new learned words.
Even your Wireless LAN passwords can be shared... you don't want this by accident, I guess.

See also these articles: ... t-settings,2817,2489212,00.asp ... need-know/ ... -settings/

Meanwhile there are tools out there, which easily controls these settings, too.
If you're too careless, you get a new data collector installed instead. offers a tool like that, "DoNotSpy10".
This software is ok for public use, until you accept also some setup options at the time of installation - new, unwanted ad-ware or even new spy software.
So really take care and READ the options of the setup program, or do not use "DoNotSpy10".

Added a bit later: There is also a script/batch file, which can improve privacy. Please take a look inside the file (it's text, not a binary) first. See

Added again later: New bad news ... Windows 10 does not use certificate pinning, means someone can easily apply a man-in-the-middle-attack for each Microsoft cloud-access for example. Explanation for certificate pinning ? See >here<.
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Extracting floppy drivers out of Windows 7 (for using them with Windows 10) 
Saturday, August 8, 2015, 11:30 AM
Posted by Administrator
May be some of you still using (USB) floppy drives with Windows 7 ?

You want to upgrade to Windows 10 ?
May be this is interesting for you ...

Two driver files are necessary for it:
\windows\system32\drivers\sfloppy.sys and
extracted out of an existing/working Windows 7 installation (may work with Windows 8 also).

Additionally you need the description/installation files located in \windows\inf:
fdc.inf and
(and perhaps also fdc.pnf and flpydisk.pnf).

These .inf files can be used to reinstall the fdc and floppy driver again, e.g. for a Windows 10 installation. At the moment I am not aware of offerings from Microsoft itself regarding the subject "floppy drive support". I've read they said only, go to your drive manufacturers pages and look for drivers.... good luck anyway for it.

Added a bit later: There is also a sample driver for a "super floppy", see
To compile the driver, you need the Visual Studio Community 2015 and Windows Driver Kit (WDK) 10, offered at, also.
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