Electronics Boutique Christmas 1997 Catalog

PC Productivity

Page 41 - Planix Home Design Deluxe, Dilbert Calendar,  Simply House, Resumes that Work, and clip art collections

Page 41 - Planix Home Design Deluxe, Dilbert Calendar, Simply House, Resumes that Work, and clip art collections

Welcome to the "stuff Google and Wikipedia made obsolete" section of the catalog.

When I saw that Dilbert Calendar I thought "hey, that might make a cool Android app". There is an official Dilbert Android app but it's awful, and this is coming from someone who's written awful Android apps himself. It's very rare that I see an app and think I could do better.


Page 42 - Total Civil War, Grolier Encyclopedia, Health Optimizer, Micro Kitchen 7, Jesus Rosetta Stone

Page 42 - Total Civil War, Grolier Encyclopedia, Health Optimizer, Micro Kitchen 7, Jesus Rosetta Stone

So back to my opening comment - everything here, totally useless now.


Page 43 - Believe Bundle, Wig Out, Wedding Workshop, World of Cooking, World of Art, Virtual Makeover, Garden Designer

Page 43 - Believe Bundle, Wig Out, Wedding Workshop, World of Cooking, World of Art, Virtual Makeover, Garden Designer

I don't think Google has made a free Google Garden or Google Makeover application yet but I'm positive they're both on the way.


Page 44 - music applications

Page 44 - music applications

Cakewalk has some serious longevity though.


Page 45 - clip art and graphics applications

Page 45 - clip art and graphics applications

That Web Animation Explosion collection came in a box that was the size of a V6 engine.


Page 46 - Master Publisher 97, Micro Cookbook, Pirates, Skywatching, more clip art

Page 46 - Master Publisher '97, Micro Cookbook, Pirates, Skywatching, more clip art

202,000 clip art images in one of these. I can picture the meeting now - one of the guys wanted to stop at 200,00 but the boss kept pushing him. No way would he settle for only 200,000 even if it meant everyone except him worked through the weekend.


Page 47 - Encarta, Virtual Globe

Page 47 - Encarta, Virtual Globe

I see old versions of Encarta all the time at yard sales yet I'm too cheap to spend a quarter to check them out.


Page 48 - Money 98, Barney ActiMates, My Personal Tutors

Page 48 - Money '98, Barney ActiMates, My Personal Tutors

Unanswered questions from this catalog - why is Barney on the same page as Microsoft Money?


Page 49 - IE4, Office 97, Windows 95, FrontPage, Home Essentials 98

Page 49 - IE4, Office 97, Windows 95, FrontPage, Home Essentials 98

To my younger readers - yes, there was a time when web browsers cost money.


Page 50 - Partition Magic, DriveCopy, Drive Image, Virus Scan 3.0, VoiceE-mail, Norton AntiVirus 4.0, Inoculan AntiVirus

Page 50 - Partition Magic, DriveCopy, Drive Image, McAfee Virus Scan 3.0, VoiceE-mail, Dr. Solomon's AnitVirus, Norton AntiVirus 4.0, Inoculan AntiVirus

I hear one of these guys just killed some dude in Belize.


Page 51 - PaperMaster, CleanSweep, TuneUp, Zip-It, Net Nanny, Hard Drive Mechanic 3.0

Page 51 - PaperMaster, CleanSweep, TuneUp, Zip-It, Net Nanny, Hard Drive Mechanic 3.0

If you're using any OS built in the last 10 years these are all pretty much useless.




Page 52 - ViaVoice, Netscape Publishing Suite, Voice Commands, Dragon Naturally Speaking, VirusWeb, Photo Scanner Suite

Page 52 - ViaVoice, Netscape Publishing Suite, Voice Commands, Dragon Naturally Speaking, VirusWeb, Photo Scanner Suite

At some point I have to get a copy of Netscape Publishing Suite and write a review of it. I can't explain why that sounds like fun to me.


Page 53 - Clean and Protect Your Hard Drive, Web Fuel, RealPlayer Plus, Guard Dog Deluxe, Chroma Fax, eShare Reunion

Page 53 - Clean and Protect Your Hard Drive, Web Fuel, RealPlayer Plus, Guard Dog Deluxe, Chroma Fax, eShare Reunion

I know I'm not the first person to say this but RealPlayer is the worst piece of software ever written. Maybe that's a bit harsh. What I mean to say is .RM is a terrible media format and RealPlayer is spammy to the point of being borderline malware.


Page 54 - Business Basics, Family Tree, Quicken, Map Pack, WillMaker, Small Business Legal Pro

Page 54 - Business Basics, Family Tree, Quicken, Map Pack, WillMaker, Small Business Legal Pro

I'm sure all this legal software is at least as credible as LegalZoom, possibly more.


Page 55 - Macro Magic, Cassiopedia, email 97, Franklin Rex, Avigo 10, Image AXS

Page 55 - Macro Magic, Cassiopedia, email 97, Franklin Rex, Avigo 10, Image AXS

I try to not make fun of prices in these catalogs because I understand the general idea behind Moore's Law and technology will become more advanced and cheaper at the same time. These early organizers though, wow, just wow.


Page 56 - Simply Streets USA, Street Atlas USA, Dream Home Designer, Road Trip, Tripmaker, New Millennium

Page 56 - Simply Streets USA, Street Atlas USA, Dream Home Designer, Road Trip, Tripmaker, New Millennium

I suppose these have some kind of historical value - i.e. seeing what a city looked like 15 years ago and whatever.


Page 57 - History Through Art, Evolution of Music, Stamps, Body Blast, Active Trainer, Family Tree Deluxe

Page 57 - History Through Art, Evolution of Music, Stamps, Body Blast, Active Trainer, Family Tree Deluxe

I don't know, the dudes on the cover of those fitness programs are pretty buff so they must work right?


Page 58 - Comptons Encyclopedia, Guitar Method, Sheet Music, Recording Studio

Page 58 - Compton's Encyclopedia, Guitar Method, Sheet Music, Recording Studio

Alright, this wraps-up the productivity session - go check out some games now.


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