For some people, the 10th birthday of the original IBM PC was cause for celebration--and a chance to mark a decade of amazing growth and technical change. But the Boston Computer Exchange (BCE), a dealer acting as broker between buyers and sellers of used PCs, had other plans: It held a wake, albeit a festive one with wine and cheese.
BCE has decided it is time to bury the IBM PC. Trade-in prices for the original PC have dropped from $2,000 in 1983 to about $200 now. At that price, BCE says it loses money each time it arranges a sale. So after Aug. 12, Alex Randall, BCE's president, says his company will bid fond farewell to the original PC and banish it from BCE's trading boards forever. But what to do with your old, no-power, no-frills PC--now that even a used computer broker won't take it? Randall's other organization, the East West Education Development Foundation, will gladly donate it to institutions that are fostering capitalism in the Soviet Union. Old PCs also make great, albeit very heavy, paperweights.