Richard Bucker

Where is TopView now?

Posted at — Mar 10, 2012

Back in the simple DOS days, and prior to even Windows, there was a movement to get multiple applications to run on the desktop at once. There were several solutions. Some were text only. Others supported text and/or graphics. Almost all of it was 8-bit color. Of course the first Apple Macintosh was release in 1984 but it was not doing any protected mode work and the more advanced processors had only started to roll of the Intel.One of my favorite operating environments was TopView. By todays standards it’s not that impressive but then again given the amount of memory, disk, and CPU we had in those days; the team did an amazing job. I met the team of developers once. They worked in a small set of 10-ish windowless offices that could only be described as in the basement. (as basements go in Florida). It truly felt like a dungeon.Some time later Quaterdeck released a project called DesqView. I used and upgraded that puppy for years. My operating environment is not much different today. One or two applications is in distraction free mode and the others are in overlapping everything mode with at least one terminal window open to run my programs in.In terms of productivity I do not think that anything has changed much. When we wrote code back in the day we watched out memory and cpu diet carefully. We wrote less and faster code. It required less testing and less people. Today we write more code faster and it takes more people to test. And maybe we finish in about the same time.Ah… back in the day…