Printed 2017/07/24 01:19AM

My First Computer

By Steve Jones, 2009/02/27

OK, I’m not going to make a huge habit of responding to these chains, but I have a few spare moments, and I like Aunt Kathi, so I’ll join in here.

My actual first computer was a Vic-20. I saw one when I was 11 or 12 and was fascinated. I loved video games and had plans of writing my own, so my brother and I begged and begged my Mom to get one. She decided it was educational enough, so we got one.

We had a cassette tape storage system and I learned to actually do some simple calculations on it. I’d run through PI, SIN, COS, other simple things that I was doing in school. We had a joystick and struggled to build an interface in BASIC that would read the joystick and move a pixel around the screen.

I’m not sure what games we had there, though I know we did. I moved to a Commodore 64 and then an Apple II pretty quickly. The Apple II was the most popular with Zork, Wizardry and a few other arcade style games.

I lived with that Apple II into college, working in my dorm across a 300baud modem to write programs. After that I went about 5 or 6 years without a computer, using a few at work before finally building my first PC.

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