Homeless in Vancouver: What's a desktop accessory doing on the road?

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      I’m not a boomer, but I grew up with pocket calculators—used them in school.

      I was also exposed to computers in high school, writing and running programs written in BASIC.

      I don’t remember much except I didn’t demonstrate an aptitude for programming.

      By the time I picked up the thread of computers again in the 1980s, every desktop system I saw was graphical.

      By the late 1980s all desktop operating system had a calculator desk accessory. It was like the one-celled organism of computer programs.

      It’s fair to say the Mac’s calculator desk accessory set the bar for everyone else.

      The classic 1984 Mac calculator DA was virtually unchanged until 2002.

      If the personal computers of the mid 1980s were the writing on the wall for pocket calculators, then the cellphones of the late 1990s were “The End”.

      PDAs like the Palm Pilot telegraphed the ending by the mid 1990s. Ironically they were also killed by cellphones.

      Pocket calculators still barely survive because, a) boomers who grew up with them still survive, and b) they can do math but they can’t do Facebook.

      Many teachers bar cellphones with their built-in calculators because they can, at the very least, distract students.

      Stanley Q. Woodvine is a homeless resident of Vancouver who has worked in the past as an illustrator, graphic designer, and writer.