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Back to the future : Flicking through a 14 year old computer magazine

Back in my native island of Mauritius, one of the few things that I promised myself to do was to go through the 200-or so computer magazines that lie undisturbed in a garden shed.

Some of them date back from 1989 and they narrate how life (as a computer geek) was back then. It was therefore with some emotion that I read though the 22nd edition of the 11th volume of US version of PC magazine (dated 22nd December 1992) , whose cover was dedicated to the 9th Annual Awards for technical excellence.

One thing that you notice almost immediately is the notable absence of service providers and web related information. No domain names, no URL and no email addresses. Actually, there was no Internet per se, just what they call an on-line service. PC magazine had its own PC Mag Net which charged a hefty $22.80 per hour for a 9600bps speed!

The other thing that you find out is that many brands have disappeared or have been bought off by others. Austin Computer Systems, Zeos International, Weitek or Occidental Systems are just a few of those companies that did not make it.

At that time PC Magazine was a flourishing print publication until the Internet came in. Oh, and John Dvorak was still writing for them.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.