Coffeehouse Thread

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The First Computer You..

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  • User profile image
    SeanW

    I got my first computer around 1978. It was an RCA Cosmac Elf. It used the 1802 microprocessor and it had a whopping 256 bytes of RAM.

    Here is a picture:
    http://homepage.mac.com/ruske/cosmacelf/images/netronics2.gif

    See also: http://www.cosmacelf.com/

    Anyone else cut their teeth on this one?

    Sean

  • User profile image
    LazyCoder

    aw crap I'm old.

    The first computer I got my hands on was an old terminal that my dad brought home from the school where he taught. I have no idea what kind it was, I just remember playing a matchstick guessing game on it over an acoustic modem.

    After that it was the Apple II where I programmed the stupid little basic programs that 10 year olds programmed back then,, then on to the Texas Instrument 99-4a programmed a lot of TI basic, Commodore-64 more Basic but also some ML, Commodore-128. I kept that for a while, next one was a 386 with DOS 5 on it. Been on the PC platform since but I'm thinking about a Mac.

  • User profile image
    Lwatson

    My first computer was a Kim 1 DL trainor with microprocessor. ( a Blazing 1mhz 6502 ) It had a whole 1 k of ram ( Zero page and 3 others WooHoo! )

    I graduated to another 6502 based unit the Vic 20... Man it felt positivly vast with 5 k or ram ( 3583 bytes for basic )

    Then I moved to a commodore 64 where I had the most fun of any of my programming exploits. I mowed a million miles of lawn and painted way to many fences and swept way to many leaves to make the money to buy that thing.

    Then was the Amiga, a machine that was light years ahead of its time and could run circles around the clunky PC's of the time.

    When Commodore finally hit their mark with their pistols ( The sides of their own heads ). I finally gave in and went to the PC for my main computer stuff, circa 1992 or 3 not sure.

    Along the way I had Apples, Pets, Coco's, TI994a, Radio Shack TRS80s, LAser 128, Amstrat , Sinclair, Some old CPM stuff, Commodore 128, and others.

  • User profile image
    barogers

    The good ole' TI-99/4A. Nothing better than Extended Basic on a computer sold by Bill Cosby. Smiley

  • User profile image
    Joe Average

    My first computer was a Sony MSX-2. When my father gave me this one I was suprised to see that the keyboard wasn't integrated with the computer and had a 3.5" drive. At that time I only laid my eyes on Commodore 64/128 and Philips MSX-1 machines. You know, they all had integrated keyboards and tape drives. We had a lof fun on the Sony MSX thingy Smiley

  • User profile image
    DrFooMod2

    Apple ][+.  Not only was it an Apple ][+, but it even had a Microsoft CP/M card in Slot 4.  I no longer have the machine, but I do still have (assuming my folks didn't throw it away) the card _and_ the Lucite box it came in.  I hope someday to have Bill autograph it.

  • User profile image
    Jorkapp

    My first computer... an old Radioshack computer. Not sure of model. Had it when I was 2.

    I do however, remember its successors:

    Intel 286
    1mb of memory
    200mb of HD space (Plenty of space for games)
    IBM Dos 4

    Then...

    Intel i386 33MHz (yay 32 bit!)
    4mb of memory
    400mb of HD space
    MS Dos 6.22 + Windows 3.1

    Followed by...

    Intel i486DX/33MHz
    8mb of memory
    400mb of HD space
    Windows 95 beta (kept rolling back system clock to keep it going)
    14.4 modem (gogo net access go!)
    8x CD Drive

    Then followed by the system I held on to until recently...

    AMD K5 133MHz
    16mb of memory
    1.6GB of HD space
    Windows 98SE
    56k modem
    12x CD Drive
    ATI Rage IIc 3D Card

  • User profile image
    patrickv

    All of my old machines are here:

    http://www.pixagogo.com/0139415192

    From left to right; top to bottom:

    Acorn Atom
    Tandy TRS-80 Model I
    Tandy TRS-80 Model III
    BBC Computer
    Amstrad CPC6128 (or something like that...)
    IBM PC XT
    PC AT (don't remember the brand name)

    From there on, there has been a long list of various PCs: some no-brands, a few Dells, a few IBM, etc.

  • User profile image
    qwert231

    Comodore 64 at school. First PC we owned was a 386 66, w/ 8Mb Ram and 200MB hard drive.

    Over time we upgraded it to a 486, and I squirrled away the parts and built it back up as my own computer. (In another case.)

    I think every geek should build there own computer at least once. It's like a Jedi building his own Light Saber!

  • User profile image
    cerkit

    My parents bought me a TI-99/4A for Christmas when I was ten.  They even bought me a few games and a tape drive so I could save my programs to tape.

    When you played the tapes back, they had this cool rhythm to them.

    BGGGRRRR-BEEEEEEP-RUAH-RUAH-RUAH!

  • User profile image
    Knute

    A Packard Hell from Sears with windows 3.1. I remember that it had a custom built UI shell that would walk you through the major tasks, that eventually died after you start loading programs on it.

    It was not until a few years later and different computer that I got the urge to program internet apps.

    ~ Knute

    ps - I remember growing up I had a nerdy step brother who pined for a Commodore 64 at the local Radio Shack. Never thought I would be pining for techno equip like him, Oh well. By the way were is that 3 screen flat panel monitor I wanted Smiley

  • User profile image
    irascian

    A Commodore Pet but I didn't really fall in love with it the way I fell in love with the BBC Model B. It cost less than an IBM graphics card for the whole shooting match with higher-res graphics, plug-in ROM word processor, amazing build-in synthesiser and a great version of Basic that let you produce some amazing moving graphics displays.

    It was perhaps most notable for the fact it featured a voice chip that featured a BRITISH accent instead of the American one that every other product featured.

    Acorn, the makers, used one of our posher BBC1 main news readers, Kenneth Kendall, to record words and phrases and many a happy hour was spent "making Kenneth Kendall say rude words". I was very young, what can I say?!





  • User profile image
    Jazzynupe

    My first was the TI computer (don't know the model but it used cartrages for various games and such). if you did not plug in the cartrage, you got to program in BASIC. And I didn't get to have the audio tape adaptor Sad

    So that was my first... got me hooked too. Then cane the Apple II in middle school. Got the clone (Laser 128 I believe) during that time. Never really go into the Macs, learned how to work on them, but not too in depth in them.

    Then came my first PC (my uncle had one and I loved it but I always wondered why we had to park the drive when shutting down) in about 1991 or 1992. I crashed it about 3 times and rebuilt it myself (it ran DOS 5 and Windwos 3.1). Poking around in files and sutff you know straight hacking just to see what it did.

    In high school we used the Atari(?)1024. Learned Alice Pascal on that.

    Then got a grant from Carnege Mellon to have a 25 MHz work station (I believe it was a DEC) for the school which we learned FORTRAN programming.

    From there we started to get a little more modern. I did not have a chance to learn C or C++ until I was in college in 1996/1997. So I did not get to the good stuff until much later... I had to suffer with a 486 SX 25 with 8MB of RAM until about 1994 or so...

  • User profile image
    Amanda.​Murphy

    Hmm I guess technically it was a TRS-80 model III.  Of course I was 4 at the time so I can't claim to have done much with it other than hang off my big brother's side and beg him to play games like Eliza (did I spell that right?)

    Well that was the first of many...one of the bonuses of growing up in a geek family.  I thank my dad daily for it.  Smiley

    Now a days I am fond of my Tablet PC.

  • User profile image
    TrevorW

    Here is my list...

    Atari 400
     - Learned basic from BYTE mag articles
     - Long lost but on my list of things to re-aquire.

    IBM PC 5150 (XT)
     -Upgraded to NEC V20
     -Upgraded from orginal Tandon 10mb hard drive to a Seagate 20mb 
     -Hercules graphics card.
     -Upgrade to 640k with kit that required cutting the pins on some of the motherboard chips and soldering on wires that ran back to a mini board that was installed in one of the the bios chip sockets.
     -Software utility that reprogrammed the interupt timer to reduce the refresh rate of the memory which sped up the cpu.
     -Learned to program databases with Dbase 2.0 and write real programs with Mix-C and Cobal with the ever useful Norton Editor.
     
    I recently re-aquired this machine.  I still had all the original programs on it that I used when it was mine!  Anyone remember the file utility 1Dir?  What about WordStar, Dbase and SideKick?
    I had to replace a blown memory chip to get it running (64k 20 nanosecond refresh rate) and now it sits in my Office as a conversation piece.

    IBM PC AT
     -20mb Hard drive
    I got this one a couple of years ago from my bank wher it was used for running credit reports.
    I'm not sure if it is one on the original 8mhz models or the later 12mhz versions.  On eof these days I'll crack the case and check...

    I've owned machines with all the Intel CPU's over the years, but all I've kept from them is the CPU's that I keep in a box somewhere around here.

    Some people think its silly to hang onto this old harware (like my wife and co-workers)  but for me, this is where it all started - these machines revolutionized personal computing and led me to a career in software development - and the boxes are built like tanks.  I think they weigh about 40lbs each and they are indestructable! (the chassis are constructed of 16 guage STEEL)

    I used to build my own boxes, but now I just just buy a new Dell every 18 months.

  • User profile image
    eagle

    My first computer was a laptop!
    A Toshiba T1000SE, without a hard drive (640k is all the memmory you will ever need).
    2.8bps modem

    I was living in Ireland, and often cycled with the Toshiba straped on my back up the road on the WindowsXP Bliss screensaver.

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