Notes & Comments/08-Oct-90
We’re trying a slightly different format for displaying text in this week’s TidBITS. It is designed for online consumption, whereas we’ve normally stuck with designs meant for paper consumption. Since we currently don’t make it easy to print TidBITS at all (that’s the point!), such a paper-oriented design doesn’t make sense. Please let us know if you like or dislike this new format in comparison to the old one. The basic difference is that paragraphs are no longer indented but are separated by a blank line, which we hope makes it more readable on screen.
Apple has announced that the ImageWriter LQ Rework Program will expire on October 31st, 1990. They say "we have seen a decline in the demand for reworked LQ printers." Of course, that may be because those poor people who purchased the ImageWriter LQs have completely given up on them by now, but as a more charitable friend noted, the LQ would have been a good impact printer if it had been quieter, faster, and less trouble-prone. In any event, if you have an ImageWriter LQ and wish to have it reworked (I’m not too sure what that entails since I’ve never met anyone who owned an LQ), you had better make an appointment with your friendly local Apple dealer.
We’ve heard that several groups of US semiconductor and computer manufacturers are recommending that the US drop price controls on imported Japanese DRAMs (dynamic RAM chips – the ones that normally populate SIMMs – gotta love those acronyms :-)). In 1986, the US government imposed a minimum price on the imported chips to prevent them from bankrupting American chip makers. The computer manufacturers weren’t happy then but have apparently managed to convince the chip makers that higher prices on memory chips means fewer computers sold with installed memory and fewer memory upgrades. Even now, the list price for a true Apple 2 megabyte memory is $499, and third party prices are hovering around $120 for a 2 meg upgrade. The recommendation, if implemented, probably wouldn’t affect the smaller 256 kilobyte and 1 meg SIMMS, but would significantly reduce the price on the newer 4 meg SIMMS. Manufacturers would also be more likely to increase the standard amount of memory sold with computers, much as Apple has done with the Mac LC giving it a standard memory configuration of 2 meg.
Adam C. Engst — TidBITS Editor
Mark Anbinder — [email protected]
InfoWorld — 08-Oct-90, Vol. 12, #41, pg. 1