Not wanting to burden Geek with anymore duties, I really think this Off-Topic forum is already sufficient for small talk. I mean, a lounge area or a chat room would duplicate this forum and confuse people about where to put things. Unless the Geek wants to eliminate this forum and substitute the lounge or chat for it. But that would seem to be a circular effort.
In any case, this seems OK for now.
Regarding your graduation time, I myself graduated in 1969. Then went on to do graduate work in physical chemistry. I remember my staff advisor was a professor so into pchem that he could barely tie his own shoes. And when he went to write on the blackboard he would always bang the chalk at his first stroke and break it. And then he would jump because he startled himself. The guy was a wreck. Maybe because he was always drinking coffee, and the caffeine perpetually in his veins made him jumpy all the time.
I have to credit him with convincing me by his behavior that I DID NOT want to end up like that, so at the end of my graduate studies, I decided to go no further.
Punch cards, huh. You know, I just now thought of this. With the "hanging chad" controversy a la Florida in the 2000 election, I don't ever remember any discussion of that issue back then in the pucnh card days. I guess the beam reader got through the opening of a chad and the output was still valid . . . or did it not, and that was the cause of errors??
Do you remember slide rules?? Of course you do. I found one I apparently kept in my junk room. Darned if I could figure out how the thing worked, but back then I knew how to do it efficiently.
Were those big mainframes particularly sensitive to heat (and that was in the era of tubes before transistors, so the heat was much more I guess), or was it dust that those seperate rooms were for . . . or both??
Analog machines?? Synchros and Servos??
I likewise don't remember when CS/IT came about. Probably sometime in the late 80's or early 90's.
Was the SAP business model even talked about in those days?? I understand that some renegade IBM guys started SAP . . . but of course that was in the 90's.
Did you rub shoulders with Ross Perot back then??