Author Topic: What was your first computer?  (Read 66569 times)

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Offline BeaminTopic starter

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What was your first computer?
« on: February 20, 2018, 10:34:43 pm »
Or your dads computer...

Mine was this


Had a 9600 baud modem and speeds of 4 or 7 MHz. Cost around $3,000 or $4,000 without the monitor. Ran DOS. My favorite part was when I discovered the modem and BBS by looking one up in the phone book. I remember there was no "internet" listing in the phone book and thinking even at that young age how it should be considering it will be just as good as the phone book one day. MY father had the internet at his work so I knew what it was. I thought you could still buy phone books. Seems like they still make phone books as a bunch were dropped of at an apartment I visited several times in 2015 and the phone books just sat there. I don't know how I found the phone number of the first bbs but once I did I found others while my parents found an $80.00 phone bill which was a lot back then. Other things we had was a shitty dot matrix printer my dad bought because he was cheap. It had four fonts you selected on the printer why it could only do that even though it was dot matrix was due to it's shittyness I guess.

Moderator Edit: Corrected minor typo in the title (It was bugging me)
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Offline NivagSwerdna

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2018, 10:52:43 pm »
 
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Offline Benta

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2018, 11:24:00 pm »
Synertek SYM-1

 

Offline rx8pilot

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2018, 11:35:27 pm »
TI99 4/A
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Offline Ampera

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2018, 11:36:34 pm »
My fist computer was a Commodore 64.
I forget who I am sometimes, but then I remember that it's probably not worth remembering.
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Offline DrGeoff

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2018, 11:39:18 pm »
National SC/MP with all of about 256 bytes of ram.
Was it really supposed to do that?
 

Offline marcus_cdn

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2018, 11:58:52 pm »
Atari 800XL; next best thing after the arcade!  In the early 80's, of course.
Knowledge is like vitamin C, you should have some everyday!
 
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Offline trophosphere

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2018, 12:09:44 am »
Apple IIGS
 

Offline LaserSteve

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #8 on: February 21, 2018, 12:24:38 am »
TRS-80 Model I Level II with 16K ram, and NO disk drive or Expansion Interface.,...    The concept of 32  baud cassette tape program storage  still gives me the jitters...
Anyone else remember the one line programming challenge?  reason being cr-lf burned a hell of  a lot of RAM,

47x127 B&W graphics... yum.. Sound (if you could call it that) by modulating the tape drive on/off bit.

Still taught me one heck about low level computing and TTl interface.

"WHAT?"   :palm:

Steve
« Last Edit: February 21, 2018, 12:32:00 am by LaserSteve »
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Offline Macbeth

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #9 on: February 21, 2018, 02:01:23 am »
Sharp MZ-80A. It's up there in my loft. I really should do the 80 column mod and fit a serial port and turn it into a dumb terminal.

All I had back in 1982 was BASIC SA-5510 on tape, and the owners manual. I programmed in BASIC back then as an 11 year old kid but was intrigued by the listing of the "Monitor ROM" in the back of the owners manual and also the Z80 instruction set with registers and clock cycles etc in a pure datasheet format and nothing else.

I soon figured out how to PEEK and POKE and do decimal to hex and make little Z80 machine code routines, but it was laborious and all done on paper to work out the branches and jumps.

One of the best things of my next computer, the BBC Micro, was it's amazing BBC Basic which had structured programming and an inline 6502 assembler, no need to piss about doing pure hex machine code any more!
 

Offline rdl

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #10 on: February 21, 2018, 02:18:26 am »
There is, of course, already a thread on this. It is hiding in the Vintage Computing forum. There are some really cool old non-PC machines in that thread.

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/vintage-computing/what-was-the-very-first-computer-you-owned/


Here is mine.

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/vintage-computing/what-was-the-very-first-computer-you-owned/msg1272450/#msg1272450













 

Online Vgkid

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #11 on: February 21, 2018, 02:53:16 am »

Gateway select 1000, win ME(no problems)
933 Mhz Athalon, 128mb gpu , 512mb ddr sdram, 12gb hdd
14??? Inch lcd ( we were the first family with an lcd monitor)
Over the years got rid of it in 2016.
Win XP (so many driver problems)
64gb hdd , 1g ram , 512mb gpu, upgraded sound card.
Stock: keyboard, lcd is still being used, went through 3 mice.
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Offline basinstreetdesign

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #12 on: February 21, 2018, 06:24:21 am »
You guys are making me feel old!

All I see is post-IBM PC vintage stuff.  That is apart from the crazy COSMAC which must have been a treat to write (assembler) software for.

As I said in a previous thread in November, last year:

"The first computer I ever OWNED was a home-built "pineapple" in 1981.  It was an unauthorized copy of the Apple ][ main board and then I built it with parts bought/scrounged.  Afterwards it was expanded with a genuine floppy drive and a cheap crt monitor.  It had a MTBF of about 4 hours so backups had to be religiously done often.

I learned the value of backups the hard way.  Once when I was working on a sizeable BASIC program the CPU decided to crash and wipe my only floppy copy of my program.  This was after about 3 weeks of work on it.  I couldn't look at it again for a couple of days so went out on my bike a saw a few movies.

The first computer I ever USED was a PDP-8 in 1967.  That one was completely assembled into an ad hoc rack frame by one of the electronics teachers at my high school in Ottawa.  Ours was the first school in Ottawa to ever have a real computer.  That teacher, Carl Weick worked on the Avro Arrow, the only Canadian fighter jet to intimidate the US military and president into demanding its program be cancelled and all materials destroyed.  To PM Diefenbakers' discredit, he did just that.

Too bad I have no pictures of either of those computers."
STAND BACK!  I'm going to try SCIENCE!
 

Offline stmdude

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #13 on: February 21, 2018, 06:59:17 am »


I had to stop doing it about 10 years ago, but before that, whenever I interviewed a SW guy, the correct answer to the question "what was your first computer?" was any 8-bit machine. It was a _great_ way to separate people with a genuine interest in computers from the others.
 

Offline BrianHG

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #14 on: February 21, 2018, 07:10:47 am »
Atari 800 with an old color RCA 1970's vacuum tube tv.  Got tons of radiation exposure learning how to program in Basic.

Also blew some regulators and other ICs as I attempted home made custom hardware plugged into the joystick ports which gave me 8 channel ADC, + 2x 8 bit IO ports + 1 8 bit input port when combining all 4 joystick ports.

 

Online ataradov

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #15 on: February 21, 2018, 07:32:39 am »
Let's add some variety here:



16-bit input / 16-bit output port is a beauty for interfacing with custom peripherals. Missed that a lot moving to LPT.

I have one restored some time ago. Don't have any storage, but it boots from an MP3 player via cassette tape input.
« Last Edit: February 21, 2018, 07:38:28 am by ataradov »
Alex
 
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Offline kultakala

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #16 on: February 21, 2018, 07:38:51 am »
Commodore VIC-20...  without any mass storage, so all was gone with powering it off  ::)
 

Offline gildasd

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #17 on: February 21, 2018, 07:52:32 am »
Olivetti 486 Dx33, 8megas of ram, 40mega hard disk.
I'm electronically illiterate
 

Offline djacobow

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #18 on: February 21, 2018, 08:08:07 am »
The original Atari 800. None of this XL nonsense. Most of the peripherals I got were from the XL period, though.

http://oldcomputers.net/atari800.html
 

Offline ebastler

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #19 on: February 21, 2018, 11:17:16 am »
Let's add some variety here:

Indeed! Thank you for that one; I had never come across it before.
Just Googled it: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electronika_BK

PDP-11 compatible, really? That's pretty neat. Did people actually run PDP software on it, e.g. in academic or industrial control settings?
 

Offline ebastler

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #20 on: February 21, 2018, 11:30:31 am »


14??? Inch lcd ( we were the first family with an lcd monitor)

That's an LCD?! What is in that big backpack? A 100 W incandescent lamp for the backlight?  ;)
 

Offline ZomBiE80

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #21 on: February 21, 2018, 11:36:53 am »
Commodore 64 back in 1989.
 

Offline kayvee

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #22 on: February 21, 2018, 11:43:41 am »
BBC Micro Model B, with cassette storage  8)
 

Offline rbm

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #23 on: February 21, 2018, 11:44:32 am »
Home built Z80 using wirewrap sockets and perfboard.  Also reused parts from a discarded IBM 3270 Model 5, including the 8" floppy drive, enclosure and keyboard.
« Last Edit: February 21, 2018, 11:46:04 am by rbm »
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Online dexters_lab

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Re: What was you first computer?
« Reply #24 on: February 21, 2018, 11:56:58 am »
the first was a 'family' computer, it was a Sharp MZ-80K


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