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posted by Woods on Thursday May 15 2014, @02:02PM   Printer-friendly
from the they-never-make-them-like-they-used-to dept.

Ryan Reed reports that when most Game of Thrones fans imagine George R.R. Martin writing his epic fantasy novels, they probably picture the author working on a futuristic desktop (or possibly carving his words onto massive stones like the Ten Commandments). But the truth is that Martin works on an outdated DOS machine using '80s word processor WordStar 4.0, as he revealed during an interview on Conan. 'I actually like it,' says Martin. 'It does everything I want a word processing program to do, and it doesn't do anything else. I don't want any help. I hate some of these modern systems where you type a lower case letter and it becomes a capital letter. I don't want a capital. If I wanted a capital, I would have typed a capital. I know how to work the shift key.' 'I actually have two computers,' Martin continued. 'I have a computer I browse the Internet with and I get my email on, and I do my taxes on. And then I have my writing computer, which is a DOS machine, not connected to the Internet.'

 
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  • (Score: 1) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 15 2014, @03:21PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 15 2014, @03:21PM (#43779)

    Your redundancy is redundant. Hand in your geek card now.

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 15 2014, @05:01PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 15 2014, @05:01PM (#43814)

    Let him off with a warning on this one.

    The computer system as a whole is more than just its operating system, so "Linux system" and "Windows system" and "HP/UX system" are all valid phrases. The fact that the operating system for G.R.R.M.'s computer happens to be called "Disk Operating System" doesn't automatically put it in the same category as "ATM machine" or "PIN number" despite similarities of structure. The two words "system" are referring to different systems, so the author gets to keep his geek card.

    This is certainly a case where a phrase should be avoided due to the negative response it may garner, despite being technically correct. Beyond this, it shows poor journalistic skills; his readers may have been interested in knowing if the box were an IBM XT or AT clone, whether the processor was an 8086 or 8088 architecture, and what clock frequency it ran. If you're going for nerd cred as a journalist, at least give a shout out to your techie readers by finding out the relevant details.

    PS: if you're going on a grammar nazi crusade, be careful to make sure you're aiming for valid targets. I didn't have mod points or I'd have marked you down as a troll. So, of course, I fed you instead :P

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 15 2014, @05:16PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 15 2014, @05:16PM (#43818)

      The two words "system" are referring to different systems, so the author gets to keep his geek card.

      Indeed, the second "system" refers to his personal PC.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 15 2014, @07:05PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 15 2014, @07:05PM (#43883)

      "Linux system" and "Windows system" and "HP/UX system" are all valid phrases

      Agreed, but you're not comparing apples to apples. The DOS acronym includes the words "operating system" in it. So let's consider "Linux operating system system" and "Windows operating system system". Hearing something like this would make even a non-techie cringe.

      • (Score: 1) by Twike on Friday May 16 2014, @02:29AM

        by Twike (483) <lure@comiclisting.info> on Friday May 16 2014, @02:29AM (#44067)

        Also agreed, all phrases are valid, however I believe your suggested expansions are less-than-ideal. I'd propose "Computer system running the Linux operating system", "computer system running the HP/UX system", "Computer system running the Windows operating system" to keep in line with the intended feel, though the Windows and Linux machines could probably have "100% IBM Compatible" inserted somewhere.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 15 2014, @05:43PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 15 2014, @05:43PM (#43827)

    Not really. Disk Operating System is the OS, the entire machine, hardware and DOS is a system. Linux is an OS, yet it is acceptable to call a Linux box a 'Linux System' which, when decomposed, becomes Linux operating system System.

    The only real problem is having the same name for a set of things at different scales, not unlike that the United States is both a State and contains states. It is all a strange state system to state.

  • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Thursday May 15 2014, @07:08PM

    by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Thursday May 15 2014, @07:08PM (#43884) Homepage Journal

    Logic fails you, hand in your geek card. Buying new shiny shit doesn't make you a nerd any more than liking Star Wars does. Nerds figure out how to make shit for you nerd wannabes to spend your money on it, or buy it to hack or tinker with.

    And how do you know the guy considers himself a geek?

    Oh, wait, you're AC, you have no geek cred at all.

    --
    Free Martian whores! [mcgrewbooks.com]
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 16 2014, @12:14AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 16 2014, @12:14AM (#44036)

      Wow, you're really taking this to heart.