I counted 7 XP machines in my house and only one of me so most of them do not get a lot of use. I did upgrade the laptop I use themost to Win 7 since I already had the disk for it. I need to upgrade one of the desktop machines but haven't decided if I should get a copy of Win 7 or just get a newer computer (and then what do I do with the old one?)
It is nice to have real serial and parallel ports so I'll hang on to some of the old computers for specific uses. By the way, some of my co-workers have said that Win 7 doesn't support parallel ports (even when they got a parallel port board and installed it). This caused us to have to buy a USB programming dongle to program the FPGA on our project because all the ones we had on hand were for parallel ports.
@Duane - Handy things, parallel ports. You can also drive an LCD (the 2 or 4 line text ones) from a parallel port (well you have the 8 data lines plus some control lines - same as a LCD wants). I saw a design once that did this, and had software that displayed your PC core temperature, cpu usage, etc on the LCD. Oh, for the good old days.....
I'll be there. The Pi LCD is really cool, except that I can't get the Pi to boot to the LCD, despite having, to the best of my ability, followed the directions to get it to do so. I always seem to have a problem with the start-up scripts in Linux.
"Older machines are handy as they have true serial and parrallel ports so they still hang in there though not connected directly to the world wide web."
The first time I built something with an Atmel processor, I didn't have a programmer. I figured I'd be okay because there are a lot of easy build-it-yourself AVR programmer designs floating around. The easiest one plugged into a parallel port.
After I'd built it, I realized that none of my working computers had a paralell port. Fortunately, I was able to go out into the garage and cobble together a computer, with a parallelport, from old parts.
What are the engineering and design challenges in creating successful IoT devices? These devices are usually small, resource-constrained electronics designed to sense, collect, send, and/or interpret data. Some of the devices need to be smart enough to act upon data in real time, 24/7. Specifically the guests will discuss sensors, security, and lessons from IoT deployments.