Watch: the evolution of desktop computer motherboards since the early 1990s

Originally published at:


I’ve already seen this in real-time, live and in colour.


I found the live performance very long and tedious.

There was a lot of padding and numerous quite frankly ridiculous unnecessary plot “twists”.

Worse than the Ring Cycle.

Let’s not even get started on some of the costuming choices:


Am disappointed that he did not mention the old AT-style power plugs, where you had to know to keep the black wires together when plugging in the two identically shaped side by side power connectors or your expensive motherboard would emit smoke and become useless.

Also he didn’t cover the evolutionary shrinkage as the most common PCs have become ever-smaller (AT to ATX to micro-ATX to mini-ITX, etc)


At 6:15, he knows which way 'round the floppy connector goes in, but he gets it backwards. The ‘2’ on the board should match the red stripe on the cable.

Glad I didn’t take his PC classes!

Also you can read the YYWW (year/week) date codes on chips to learn exactly when they were made, instead of guessing. The SIMMs on that first motherboard were made in the autumn of 1992.


And then some.

Starting with a 386? I had an 8088, and a 286. Kids today, with their newfangled 386s and 14.4k modems. In my time you had to use your mouth as modem, boooooo-biiii,bobibkrrrrrrrrrh. Our keyboards were so heavy you had to use a sledgehammer to type. The last version of DOS that was any good was 3.22, I bet this youth runs 4.01. We had to walk fifty miles through a blizzard for printouts. The pixels on our screens were made up rotating wooden blocks.


If your idea of a high def display isn’t a Solari board, get off my lawn.

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Skipped the 486 and Pentium 1 era? Thats where zif sockets came in, and USB ports.

Also, everyone knew the SX in 386sx stood for sux, because it was the slow one in the lineup. Yeah, I was young back then.

And the high end ones recently got bigger. I’ve recently replaced motherboard in my computer, and the new dual Xeon board didn’t fit - it was “Enhanced Extended ATX” and a few centimeters higher than Extended ATX. I had to move power supply to the outside of case and drill some additional mounting holes :slight_smile:
I didn’t watch the video, but as for smaller form factor old PCs, the stackable PC/104 standard is worth mentioning. They were used mostly as embedded computers, but were fully functional PCs.

I still use one of those.

And have a Z80 machine on the desk in my office.

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