Exhibits At the Museum

This Day in History

Today: October 1, 2014

August 20, 1995

NY Times Article on Need to Preserve Obsolete Hardware and Software

The New York Times' George Johnson reminisces about obsolete computer hardware and software in a column titled, "Let's Boot Up the Trash-80 and Play Some Oldies." Written just before the release of Microsoft's Windows 95 operating system, the article bemoaned the lack of a home - virtual or otherwise - for computer antiques. The fate of Windows 3.1 was obvious: "In digital bonfires across the country, millions of copies of the old software will be wiped from hard disks to make way for the new. One by one, all those carefully crafted bits -- the 1's and 0's that form the gears and pulleys of Microsoft's contraption -- will disappear in infinitesimal puffs of heat."

Software, however, is preserved by many individual collectors and computer enthusiasts and by The Computer History Museum.