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VinzC
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 12:31 pm    Post subject: Am I so really obsolete? Reply with quote

Hi all.

I guess the answer is yes, so the question doesn't really matter. I just want to share, what I guess is my state of depression...

I was born in a time when televisions were black an white and had cathode ray tubes. When you bought a new television — some had become digital — all you had to do was power them up, get the remote and press one or two buttons to scan for available channels and... tadaaaaa... watch them a few minutes later.

My significant other had a Linux-powered Emtec device for more than a decade, which performance slowly degraded unfortunately. First recording stopped working but, hey, when we have youtube and HDMI connectors... Then it started to take randomly longer to boot, up to a point it could take more than five minutes, while it only took seconds initially. But it worked.

As I suspected the disk was failing (hearing regular "clicks" when powered on) I decided to take and fix it, and temporarily connect the television to the coax wall plug — yeah, we're not subscribed to digital distribution and often use "alternate" channels. Oh my... what have I done...

Now that I'm back with a cable — BTW having had to figure out what once was "UHF" now is called "LiveTV" *sighs* — to my surprise, the TV set asks for a PIN code... 8O Wh... What? She never set one! After looking up on the interwebs, found some 0-0-0-0, 1-2-3-4 but that didn't work. And I have no idea where the FM is so I can read it but, whatever, really, that's not the point. Morality: I bought a cable to make a nice surprise to my darling but I need permission from the TV set to check if it works 8O :roll: :evil: .

I mean... why? Why the f$*@k?

Now there's a computer in this friggin' set, button presses take ages to react! Why did they have to put a computer in an electronic device that could do without... and did better without!?

This is not the first time I'm wondering why this "reality" has become so complicated and frustrating. Do these "engineers" make it on purpose to screw people? Or did they just not "think"? This TV set "thing" is just one in that long list of things that piss me off for good. Technology has just become the symbol of human mentality: why make it simple when it can be [so much] complicated... What for? What's the purpose? Is it only "because we can [screw you up]?"

Now what's next? Will I have to type a password to drive my car? Or use the brakes? Will I have to use a pin code to open my fridge? My cupboards? To refill my car's tyres? To breathe? Will I have to ask permission to some artificial brain to recharge my pacemaker? Between people who now struggle for a living and "engineers" of my ass who don't know what to invent next or what crap to implement just to keep the nose of the profit curve in the "right" direction, despite all living signs that show enough is enough, I really wonder where it's going to stop. Probably never.

I feel like simplicity's gone. And all of my dreams/illusions with it and I'm fed up to redo things to my taste because I no longer understand this pervasive complication that's shoved in every technology bit I use today. If true, then I'd rather get back to a cave and cultivate my food myself, far from this global nonsense.

Is mankind gone mad or is it just me? Is this the kind of reality we all want? Did we just ask for that or is it there anyway? I wonder if I'm still fit for this.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 2:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heraclitus already recognized the fundamental changing of objects with the flow of time, panta rhei (πάντα ῥεῖ), meaning "everything flows." It's normal for thing to change over time, what is less normal is the difficulty to adapt to such changes.
Cognitive ageing maybe?

Quote:
Cognitive ageing is the decline in cognitive processing that occurs as people get older. Age-related impairments in reasoning, memory and processing speed can arise during adulthood and progress into the elder years.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 5:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quess I have saved myself from lots of hassle. I stopped watching TV (well, TV broadcasts; I do play old video games on them) before the turn of the millenium.

I used to listen to FM radio. But now there is nothing to listen to, but craptastic 'music' and biased political 'discussion'. And why listen to the bits of classical music on national broadcasting channel, when I have enough on CD.

On the computer side, I've stick with 'obsolete' stuff as much as I could. Software side (i.e. os) works almost the way I've used to since the early 90's with hp-ux. No, screw that: things are actually much more to my liking now, although RedHat-creep is a real problem.

I'm still using CRT monitor (Eizo T960). I do have a backup LCD monitor though: Eizo CX241, which is acceptable as far as static image quality goes.
Have the same IBM model M 102 keyboard, which I got alongside of some used PC clone in the early 90's; same Logitech Trackball, I've had since late 90's.

But I bought brand new Unicomp with USB termination, just to be on the safe side.

I'm not sentimental, no! I ditched vinyls the minute when CD players became decently priced and there was enough classical music to listen to. But then CD masters started to be brickwalled!
I've even bought one new integrated amplifier and two sets of speakers since the late 80's.

Anyway, there is no way in hell I will ever buy so called 'smart phone' (I don't need cellphone for anything else than what GSM offers; damn, I don't need a cellphone!) or a 'smart tv' (which by default think you want to stream videos through the internet instead of watching digital television broadcasts - which in my country are still worse quality than the analog broadcasts were).

When my current PC setups die or can no longer run linux comfortably (that is, when browser become too bloated), I will ditch this whole computer and technology bullshit.

Mankind 'gone' mad? It has always been, but not always it was willing to buy a turd in a shiny disguise.

Yes, you've become relic, you were deprecated long while ago and you are obsolete. Welcome to the club. Enjoy it!
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the new TVs are crap you are right VinzC. They could be good but programming good SW is not the strong side of the economy. Everybody wants quick money and reduces the costs so what you get is half working untested and quickly released SW on your TV.

I used on my Philips the youtube application but it got not supported after a few years -> no youtube anymore. Probably they want that i buy a new TV. Such a waste of material. Now i resorted to an Internet Radio application (TuneIn) but lately i get the message 'failed to sign in to server' when i start the "smart"tv environment. got to wait and try again if i want to listen to radio trough that TV.

My conclusion is that SmartTVs have crappy software and the best thing is to skip it to the maximum level possible by plugging in some linux box (like that EMTEC) via HDMI.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 5:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Cognitive ageing is the decline in cognitive processing that occurs as people get older. Age-related impairments in reasoning, memory and processing speed can arise during adulthood and progress into the elder years.
erm67 wrote:
Heraclitus already recognized the fundamental changing of objects with the flow of time, panta rhei (πάντα ῥεῖ), meaning "everything flows." It's normal for thing to change over time, what is less normal is the difficulty to adapt to such changes.
Cognitive ageing maybe?

I don't fundamentally disagree with what you wrote but I'm not sure we're talking about the same thing[s]. Cognitive ageing looks to me like something related to learning or the faculty to adapt to new situations, which require absorbing new knowledge. I'd like to ask what this has to do with the situation I described.

The objects we might talk about here don't change by themselves; rather some humans have wanted those changes. Some... "objects" change with time on themselves such as nature, lifeforms and there's no question one shall adapt or die. After all that's how all ended up here, right?

I see a slight difference in "objects change" and "some companies want to make profit from changes, regardless of the rate at which these changes occur". Besides, I still fail to see some sense in, for instance, but not limited to:
  • computer technologies getting faster with time yet taking even more to be ready to their users?
  • computer technologies infecting day-life objects for reasons and true benefits to be explained — connected Nike shoes? connected fridges, which become security risks? Connected watches, which become day-life monitoring agents and require tenfolds more energy than their obsoleted parts? Connected TV sets with webcams that never get updated while the fallacy of insulting users on pretexted laziness becomes the norm?
  • accelerated rate of changes, which makes humans desperate for stability and reliability?
If all those changes were for the greater good, I'd have nothing to object. But do you see where this leads us? We've expanded life to extents unknown centuries ago yet hypocritically forget people are digging our electronics crap, full of mercury and other lethal substances for a living for just surviving.

We're looking forward to going to Mars but can we be sure enough there'll be humans to take there? Do you see what effects comfort has upon humans? Do you see how this perpetual motion/change tires humans? And how and in what conditions it's achieved? And I'm omitting even more of those effects.
______

In short, what does "cognitive ageing" have to do with nonsensical complexity that is crafted by a few and thrown at the rest? I don't find these apparatuses difficult to understand. It's the mind of the engineers who came up with such crap that I don't understand.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

People smarter than you decided that you can not be allowed to have some things you had in the 1980s, and are doing their work to implement this agenda. This is not related in any way to cognitive aging whatsoever
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 9:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

VinzC wrote:


In short, what does "cognitive ageing" have to do with nonsensical complexity that is crafted by a few and thrown at the rest? I don't find these apparatuses difficult to understand. It's the mind of the engineers who came up with such crap that I don't understand.


Well actually I am trying to set up my mail server to use DMARC to verify incoming emails, DKIM to sign outgoing email, MTA_TLS to make use nobody can sniff my emails unencrypted, I also proved ownership of the domain at google and configured glibc to use system wide systemd-resolved which in turn is configured to resolve domain names only using dns over tls so that nobody can sniff what domains I am using. After all that I received at least 5 nasty phishing emails only yesterday, and if I set up DMARC to hard fail all my banking emails are bounced back.
So basically I understand your feelings about nonsensical complexity that is crafted by a few (google) and thrown at the rest of us, but it was a lot of fun for me to experiment with that, even if I am convinced that it was a lot better when I could just telnet to port 25 and type a few commands followed by ^D to send an email.

The whole internet is currently in this situation where google dictates stupid and complex rules that doesn't work but I try to adapt to the situation since, beside loudly complaining, there is nothing I can do to change that and I think that, maybe, I will find some positive effects from all this crappy standards. The same goes for the rest of the technology, as long as you can learn & use it without problems maybe there are some positives in it.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 10:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are at least some credible reasons as to why email has become more complicated. I'm not commenting on implementation details or nefarious motivations that might go along with some of the credible reasons.

Complication of electronics really comes down to marketing and content monitoring. The cost of content to consumers has reduced, which in turn reduces income for content creators. Which shifts the content from what is being consumed to who is consuming what. Beyond pixels, HZ and diagonal measurements, televisions don't really need to do anything they haven't always done. I stopped using my TV years ago. It worked fine, but there was no point to wasting the electricity. I don't see a situation developing that would inspire me to reconnect the old TV, never mind purchasing a new one.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tinea_pedis wrote:
When my current PC setups die or can no longer run linux comfortably (that is, when browser become too bloated), I will ditch this whole computer and technology bullshit.

For a split second, I thought you were reading my mind...

tinea_pedis wrote:
Mankind 'gone' mad? It has always been, but not always it was willing to buy a turd in a shiny disguise.

Gotta admit, can't deny that.

tinea_pedis wrote:
Yes, you've become relic, you were deprecated long while ago and you are obsolete. Welcome to the club. Enjoy it!

Well, well, thanks my friend :) .

@Ashie, pjp, erm67:
Thanks for sharing. Not feeling alone makes it a little bit lighter ;-) .
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 12:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can still run your computers like you did 20 or 30 years ago. Less there is proprietary components, elements, software etc. in the device, easier it is to control.
One needs to navigate, that is all.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 12:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

-

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 6:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's symptomatic of a wider problem - you ain't supposed to fix things any more, my washing machine needed a simple switch swapped over (there's a thread) turned into an adventure even trying to gain access.

And yes even setting things up, I'm starting to feel like my parents must have felt, I remember when I could take a Betamax VCR, plug everything in and have it running in fairly short order, it was fairly simple. My father always lamented that things were getting more complicated and unnecessarily so. Feel that way myself now.


And TV yep, it's rubbish these days, I've cut the cord saved myself a nice amount on the TV licence fee.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 8:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The washers and fridges in my home & parents home are still originals from late 80s / early 90s

First, they all worked over 20..25 years from new till first fault

Second, in all of them i could repair the fault in just a few hours (not including using the opportunity to clean the appliance's normally inaccessible parts), with parts available from electrical & mechanical parts warehouses in the 2010s

At the same time i see people around throw out new equivalent appliances that are 3 years old or less, and praise the manufacturer if an appliance lasted 5+ years



By lasting so long they are ultimately the most environmentally responible option as well. Unlike the "energy efficiency to the last 0.5W is the only thing that matters" stance of manufacturers and environmental regulation nowadays

Yet, under the rush and regulations of energy efficiency, many of moves that lead to short lasting and unrepairable appliances (, cars, lighting, ....) are brought in. With full knowledge of most of everyone involved



Other than making things last shorted, there is the whole other area where i feel like OP



About things like systemd, Intel & AMD CPU backdoor platforms, etc that dont really make the hardware shorter lasting or non repairable, but are definitely not meant for the device owner's good (hard to back such claim against systemd, but that's how i feel about it)



And about forcing technology which i expect as being optional. Specifically when forcing a specific product, rather than just requiring a generic type of product with specified features

Especially when the product forced is a proprietary software product, which in my book counts as malware automatically, without any need for a specific proof

Case in point :

In some cities you are required to have a smartphone and to install malware on it in order to have a car. What's the connection ? In those cities all municipal parking is paid and the payment is available only through an app. You cannot just use a parking meter on the street, they had all been removed

Now with the COVID pandemic, everyone is expected to run Webex, Zoom, etc. as a requirement to getting education, and in one case published by EFF as requirement for using the state justice system (trial in Zoom). I dont recall being obligated to agree to this software EULA's as a condition when applying to school, college, or court....
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 4:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ashie wrote:
The washers and fridges in my home & parents home are still originals from late 80s / early 90s

First, they all worked over 20..25 years from new till first fault

Second, in all of them i could repair the fault in just a few hours
I remember "appliances don't last like they used to" at least since the 80s. I'd be surprised if that wasn't said in the 70s if not 60s. I also recall cost of repair to exceed practical cost of replacement from at least the mid 80s.


Ashie wrote:
By lasting so long they are ultimately the most environmentally responible option as well.
And that is only one small piece of what matters. "Environmental responsibility" t is a luxury:

If you have $100 Converted from 1950 to 2005 it would be equivalent to $835.41 today. (2020: $1,069.62)
In 1950 the average income per year was $3,210.00 and by 1959 was $5,010.00.

1950 Twin Top With Griddle $184.95 (2020: $1,978.26)
1951 High Pop Automatic Toaster $21 ($210.74)
1952 Coldspot Refrigerator $329 ($3,202.73)
1953 Washer and Dryer $494.90 ($4,781.91)


If you have $100 Converted from 1980 to 2005 it would be equivalent to $243.45 today. (2020: $312.03)
In 1980 the average income per year was $19,170.00 and by 1989 was $27,210.00.

1980 Under Counter Dishwasher $249.95 (2020: $779.91)
1984 Oven Range $899.98 ($2,238.48)
1989 Refrigerator with Ice Dispenser $1060.00 ($2,211.18)

Pricing applied to a CPI inflation calculator.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ashie wrote:
With full knowledge of most of everyone involved

I'd rather say «with everyone's carelessness» but that doesn't change the idea...
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 6:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the root cause of complexity/bloat is consumerism, and also human nature.
In the 1950's, the key to your car was just a piece of metal, with proper tools and time you could even make your own copies if you wanted.
Today most car keys have some electronics in them, as far as I know you cannot duplicate an electronic key without the manufacturer involvement (because it needs a proprietary firmware).
Cool new things make people to consume more, which drives innovation and fazes out an old tech. Cool new things also require more workers to produce it, someone should design the PCB for the key, the plastic casing, someone should program the damn thing, and then everything should be soldered and put together, that's a lot of steps and potential workers for just one small key, imagine the entire car, more work places means better economy.
But I'm not actually sure if the frustration is universally felt by all people, or only by us, people who like to be in control of their own tech. Do you think an average Tesla buyer is upset that he can't reprogram his own car easily? I think not. Usually it's very simple for the people who are ignorant about how things work, they push the 'Netflix' button and relax, while underneath are fucking infinite turtles down to the bottom.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 7:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, we here are in Gentoo for a reason....

From people not involved as much with IT, generally there is understanding and often agreement with what we say from people that "do stuff", such as in industry and maintenance - Engineers, Builders, Janitors, ....

On the other end of the scale are the "Netflix button" people. It is of no coincidence i think, that the "far end" of this group has this mindset in regards to quite broad range of things, that extends way beyond only technology. (I am not generalizing on all people who happen to use Netflix, but you get the idea)
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 22, 2020 9:59 am    Post subject: Re: Am I so really obsolete? Reply with quote

VinzC wrote:

Now there's a computer in this friggin' set, button presses take ages to react!


So I guess you somehow got the idea there's something wrong with that. And maybe you got this idea all on your own?

That would be inconsistent with the hypotheses of "impairments in reasoning".

However, manifest "age-related impairments in reasoning" seems to be rare anyway. You might think it applies to old people who seem to display signs of it. If you know them, you know they have always been this way or even worse, therefore it's not age-related. (Unless you are one of them, and maybe think: young person==sound reasoning, old person==dubious reasoning)

Just consider that, for example: People actually deal with ink printers!
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 22, 2020 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

pjp wrote:
I remember "appliances don't last like they used to" at least since the 80s. I'd be surprised if that wasn't said in the 70s if not 60s. I also recall cost of repair to exceed practical cost of replacement from at least the mid 80s.

I remember the color TV my dad got us in 1966. That thing lasted until the mid '90's. Replace vacuum tubes every few years was all it needed.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 22, 2020 7:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep. My recollection is that the 70s saw a significant drop in quality in favor of cheap, but it took a while for that to become an unavoidable necessity to remain a viable business.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2020 2:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

pjp wrote:
Yep. My recollection is that the 70s saw a significant drop in quality in favor of cheap, but it took a while for that to become an unavoidable necessity to remain a viable business.
And we got all four channels.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2020 9:17 am    Post subject: Re: Am I so really obsolete? Reply with quote

VinzC wrote:
Now there's a computer in this friggin' set, button presses take ages to react!

jamapii wrote:
So I guess you somehow got the idea there's something wrong with that. And maybe you got this idea all on your own?

Yes, I did. The previous set, which didn't have an [suspected] operating system in it (it had none) reacted in a snap when we pressed a button. This one can take up to one second (yes, I went so far as to time the reaction time) until a button press on the remote does cause a change on the screen...

jamapii wrote:
That would be inconsistent with the hypotheses of "impairments in reasoning".

However, manifest "age-related impairments in reasoning" seems to be rare anyway. You might think it applies to old people who seem to display signs of it. If you know them, you know they have always been this way or even worse, therefore it's not age-related. (Unless you are one of them, and maybe think: young person==sound reasoning, old person==dubious reasoning)

Just consider that, for example: People actually deal with ink printers!

Now I'm not sure I understand what you mean... Or are you just saying that people who complain on this topic can not necessarily be associated with "impaired reasoning", especially when their argumentation can be reproduced and demonstrated ?
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2020 4:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No you aren't getting obsolete, the vast majority of the change you see with consumer electronics is aptly summed up by your own statement

VinzC wrote:
"engineers" of my ass who don't know what to invent next or what crap to implement just to keep the nose of the profit curve in the "right" direction


A lot of the equipment today are already functionally well developed. Something like a refrigerator doesn't need much more improvements unless it has something to do with efficiency. You pump the heat out and keep the shit in chill, done! A TV just need to process the video/audio signals and render them, while improving those aspects are good (in addition to efficiency). You don't need to turn it into a computer. I remember when they had regular CRTs, the next big advancement were (near) flat CRTs before LCDs took over. Then they wanted to curve it in reverse!

Anyhow, mere profit isn't enough for publicly traded companies, they need never ending 'growth' in profits. Which I think is the real issue. Real advancements in tech happen a lot more gradually, like 5 years so so. Till then you need some bullshit incremental 'incremental' improvements to keep the ball rolling.

IoT was pitched as the next big thing after phones and they were trying to push it in every dumb thing. IoT (smart) locks that go obsolete with a botched system update or when the parent company goes belly up when regular locks last decades. The smart locks aren't harder to crack either. I think EEVBlog posted a video of breaking into a safe with a smart lock.

About the repairability, when you account for inflation, the old stuff that were repairable were often much more expensive than the modern equivalents while simultaneously being less complex (tightly integrated). Multi-layered circuit boards as opposed to double sided at the most; tiny smd as opposed to tht parts; few highly integrated complex chips as opposed to several smaller components. When the cost of repair exceeds or is a significant % of the original purchase price, it makes little sense to repair. Repairs shops close down due to lack of business and you're pretty much down to outright replacing the devices as opposed to getting them repaired.

From the manufacturer's perspective, given the above point, it makes sense to cut down on the costs, getting rid of stuff that makes something more repairable. And with features getting deprecated so rapidly, it also doesn't make a lot of sense to build something to last beyond it's useful life. It's looked at as inefficient design.
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l33t
l33t


Joined: 01 Nov 2005
Posts: 634
Location: EU

PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2020 6:19 pm    Post subject: Re: Am I so really obsolete? Reply with quote

VinzC wrote:
The previous set, which didn't have an [suspected] operating system in it (it had none) reacted in a snap when we pressed a button. This one can take up to one second (yes, I went so far as to time the reaction time) until a button press on the remote does cause a change on the screen...

Did you visually inspect the PCB to see if you can identify a serial (UART)

Code:
_____UART____
|           |
|Pin 4 - GND|
|Pin 3 - RXD|
|Pin 2 - TXD|
|Pin 1 - VCC|
|_          |
  |_________|

It looks like that most of the times, maybe you can interrupt the boot process pressing a key (ctrl-b for example)
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True ignorance is not the absence of knowledge, but the refusal to acquire it.
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My fediverse account: @erm67@erm67.dynu.net
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Stribor
n00b
n00b


Joined: 14 Sep 2015
Posts: 1
Location: Hong Kong

PostPosted: Sat Sep 26, 2020 12:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I threw the TV out like 1 or 2 months after 9/11. Got tired of all "terrrist, terrrist, terrist" 24/7. Never really missed it. Ditched the old trusty Sony Trinitron about when LCD's went 1080p, etc etc. Last bastion is analog sound system, trusty old tube amp and modern new dacs. Oh well.
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