Retrocomputing Stack Exchange by Kiwix

Q&A for vintage-computer hobbyists interested in restoring, preserving, and using the classic computer and gaming systems of yesteryear

Most popular questions

411 Why did moving the mouse cursor cause Windows 95 to run more quickly? 2019-07-01T06:45:31.650

170 What algorithm did Microsoft use to dither colour in early versions of Windows? 2016-12-08T00:34:45.623

127 It's now safe to turn off your computer 2018-06-20T07:19:12.160

126 Why is the keyboard and cellphone / telephone numbers in a different order? 2020-07-13T11:22:36.660

116 How did Commodore's anti-Microsoft Easter Egg work? 2017-08-02T16:45:40.330

106 Was there ever any reason to wait 30 seconds to restart a c.1995 PC? 2018-02-05T08:56:50.713

104 How can tilting a N64 cartridge cause such subtle glitches? 2016-11-01T15:41:45.140

99 Does "Disk Operating System" imply that there was a "non-disk" Operating System? 2017-03-05T01:50:56.133

95 Why did MS-DOS applications built using Turbo Pascal fail to start with a division by zero error on faster systems? 2019-08-21T11:22:16.083

94 How was early randomness generated? 2017-02-05T10:22:30.750

92 Were there 8086 coprocessors other than the 8087? 2017-03-06T13:36:23.223

91 How did people use ed? 2018-01-03T22:11:55.383

89 Why would a NES game use an undocumented 1-byte or 2-byte NOP in production? 2016-12-04T04:21:22.730

87 Have programming languages driven hardware development? 2019-01-21T22:53:07.017

86 What key factor led to the sudden commercial success of MS Windows with v3.0? 2017-03-02T21:26:51.780

84 Why do C to Z80 compilers produce poor code? 2018-03-28T11:42:00.260

83 Why was BASIC built into so many operating systems? 2016-05-11T20:20:20.267

82 Why did modems have speakers? 2019-07-22T16:30:21.903

81 Why does part of the Windows 98 Setup program look older than the rest? 2020-05-24T13:13:23.477

80 How did Windows 3.1 implement multitasking? 2016-06-07T23:25:40.107

80 Is there any code in Firefox (as of 2020) that comes from Netscape Navigator? 2020-03-27T11:45:04.367

79 Why does the Minus World exist? 2016-11-06T19:31:09.187

79 Exactly what color was the text on monochrome terminals with green-on-black and amber-on-black screens? 2019-11-21T04:26:46.270

78 Why were CLIs typically light text on dark background, whereas GUIs typically use(d) dark text on light background? 2018-09-14T20:23:16.437

75 Back in the late 1980s, how was commercial software for 8-bit home computers developed? 2019-01-30T07:20:47.560

73 How were the first ZX Spectrum games written? 2017-07-16T14:01:31.373

73 Did any 8-bit computer system / OS have concepts for concurrency and multitasking like we know from today? 2017-08-22T17:27:58.983

72 What made Windows Me so crash-prone? 2019-07-14T08:21:28.693

70 What technological factors drove the rise of "high-speed" modems in the early 1990s? 2017-11-22T15:25:40.757

69 Why wasn't ASCII designed with a contiguous alphanumeric character order? 2019-06-26T01:18:16.677

69 Why did IBM make the PC BIOS source code public? 2019-08-13T13:27:39.190

69 Why is the processor instruction called "move", not "copy"? 2019-12-05T23:34:06.217

69 How much better was DEC Alpha than contemporary x86? 2020-02-06T13:44:22.230

68 Why did Unix use slash as the directory separator? 2018-07-12T17:07:43.983

66 Did Apple not originally allow anyone to develop software for the Macintosh? 2017-03-21T00:13:55.943

66 How was C ported to architectures that had no hardware stack? 2018-08-06T12:24:39.133

65 What character is the MS-DOS cursor? 2018-01-31T19:15:23.403

64 Where did the popularity of the `i` variable come from? 2016-11-30T23:54:12.170

64 Why did C use the -> operator instead of reusing the . operator? 2019-04-24T15:44:54.880

63 Back in 1984 I wrote some games for Spectrum - Will they still be playable? 2020-08-16T18:51:06.343

62 How exactly does Sonic & Knuckles' 'Lock-On Technology' work? 2016-09-26T13:38:28.773

62 What's the story behind the name "X11"? 2017-06-07T08:25:19.567

62 Is it safe to turn on a 40-year old TRS-80? 2018-01-17T12:53:10.207

62 Why did some early CPUs use external math chips? 2018-04-04T08:15:41.130

62 Why is Windows using CR+LF and Unix just LF when Unix is the older system? 2018-05-03T15:21:26.360

62 What are the software logos in MORICONS.DLL? 2018-06-10T19:15:59.997

62 How was copying prevented when the first CD-ROM games were introduced? 2018-11-30T15:25:16.283

61 Why are a lot of monochrome computer monitors green? 2016-06-01T23:40:22.113

61 Why did DOS use dollar-terminated strings? 2018-09-19T17:19:27.563

61 Were later MS-DOS versions still implemented in x86 assembly? 2018-10-07T09:16:19.353


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