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Terry Yager
November 21st, 2003, 03:23 PM
What was the first computer you ever owned/used?

My very first computer was a TRS-80 Model 1 that I never did get working. The next computer I bought was a Kaypro II that I found at the Salvation Army for $18.00. I still have that one.

--T

Erik
November 21st, 2003, 03:32 PM
The first computer that I ever touched/used was a Commodore Pet 2001 purchased by my school system in the late 1970s. It was passed from school to school and when it made it to my school I'd spend lots of time on it.

The first computer I ever owned was a first-run IBM PC delivered in December of 1981. I nearly wore that puppy out before replacing it. . .

I now own clean examples of both but not the originals.

Erik

coimbrap
November 21st, 2003, 03:48 PM
First sight with computing was an Atari VCS 2600 I owned
First computer I ever touched was an Oric-1
First I owned was an Amstrad CPC 464. Still got it...

Charles

dongfeng
November 21st, 2003, 04:57 PM
The first "computer" for me was an Atari 2600 that my Grandfather won in a competition! He didn't have much use for a games machine, so several years later (I was born in 1981) he gave it to me. I remember spending HOURS battling with my Dad playing Laser Blast 8)

The next computer was the VIC-20. Another freebie given to my Grandfather by the supplier for his company. He didn't have much use for that either so again, it came to live with my parents ;) My grandfather (my "other" grandfather who used to design parts for those big old computers which filled several rooms) used to write programs for me. I then learnt to program that when I was 5 years old (1986) and I still have all his and my programs on the original blank casette that came with the computer :)

I also used to have a vesion of the VIC-20 that was from Hong Kong. given to me by my Aunt after they moved back over to UK. I gave it away though :shock: - but in 1993 or so it wasn't really anything special, especially as it wasn't a UK version. Oh the shame~~~

In 1990, my parents purchased an Amiga 500 - the best thing ever as it had a colour dot matrix printer!! I never used a printer before, so it was quite a novely being able to print out your programs to look for the bugs! We used that until 1996 when we bought a Pentium I 166MHz PC.

Somewhere in the middle of that I bought a BBC Model B for 20, complete with "green screen" monitor 8) I prefered that to programming instead of the Amiga. The bonus was that my school's library had some BBC's in it that nobody used. My and my friends had a great time making programs that would randomly emit really high pitched noises (the kind that give you a headache and can't really hear properly) at random intervals throughout the day. *FX178 was the command that disabled the "break" key ;)

And a couple of years ago I got given an Amstrad CPC6128 that my neighbour was going to throw away.

Buy my collection isn't complete unless I get a really old IBM PC, that would be very cool. Gotta get the VIC working first!! I miss that computer.

Super-Slasher
November 21st, 2003, 06:44 PM
It was a clone machine and had a 1.5GB HD, Pentium 166 processor and 48MB RAM - first computer I owned (family PC) in early 1997.

My glory-gaming days of Red Baron II and Iron Wolves, ah, memories...

Jorg
November 21st, 2003, 11:53 PM
My first that was completely my own was a C64-II.
I bought it in the mid 80-s, when I broke my leg and had to sit still for quite some time.

The first I worked/played with was a Coleco, then a CBM PET, a nice Philips PC with 128 kb ram and 160 kb floppies (not XT), an XT-286, an 5170.

/edit: Ah I forgot the Pr1me minicomputer.. It served 50-80 users and had a whopping 4 mb RAM.. televideo 920 terminals..

Then I bought a CBM PC10-III and the PC rat race started.

Terry Yager
November 22nd, 2003, 08:27 AM
I have to correct myself, it was 4:30 a.m. when I posted to this thread...

My very first computer was actually a Commodore 64. I had completely forgotten that one.

My older brother purchased a Vic-20 in 1986. About a month or so later, the Commodore dealer was running a promotion of some kind where they were refunding the full purchase price of your Vic, provided you applied the $$$ towards a C-64. My brother promptly took them up on the offer and brought home a new C-64. After owning it for a little while, he decided that what he really needed was a dedicated games machine. He went out and bought a new Atari 2600, and offered the 64 to me for a mere $150.00--a bargain at the time as the 64 was selling for around 300.00. Even back then I was a cheapskate, so I couldnt pass up that bargain. After owning it for about two weeks, I decided that I didn't have the time to learn how to make it do anything useful, and didn't wish to spend the big bucks to buy the extra stuff that would be needed (printer, disk drive, etc.). A 1541 drive was about $500.00 at the time. After owning the 64 for about two weeks, I re-sold it to one of my mechanics at my garage.
By 1991, I was now disabled and had a lot of extra time on my hands, so I spent a lot of time doing volunteer work. One of the places I volunteered a lot was at my children's school, as a classroom aide. My daughter's first grade classroom had a small TRS-80 network set up, which consisted of a Model 4 for a file server, a Network 4 controller, and about 8 Model 1 's as workstations. One of the things the teacher asked me to do was to go over and help the children on the computers. Well, DUH! I had no idea how to do anything with it. Fortunatly, I was assisted by a helpful 6 year old, who showed me how to bring up the system, and to download a program to the Mod-1s. I WAS DOING REAL COMPUTING!
Shortly after this first experience, I was at the local AmVets second-hand store where I turned up a Model 1 with lots of extra goodies, manualage, disk drives, printer, everything. I convinced my wife that we had to spend the $35.00 for it because it was something the kids could use. I brought it home, hooked everything up, and--nothing! It didn't work. I later figured out there was something wrong with the Expansion Interface, but at that time I didn't know that. I thought all I needed was some floppy disks for it, so a trip to the computer store and I came home with a brand-new box of disks. I proceded to put one in the disk drive and--nothing! Little did I know that the disk had to actually have SOFTWARE on it. I did manage to figger out how to hook up the Mod-1 without the expansion, and spent some time playing around with BASIC. I was hooked! I started to read everything computer-related that I could lay my hands on. I learned that the computer needed software, and set out to find some. That is when I learned how old and obsolete my Mod-1 was. You couldn't buy any software for it. (This was in 1991). I continued to learn all that I could and after a little while, I turned up a Kaypro II at the Salvation Army. Having learned from my prior experience, I went home and began to call around to see if software for it was available. One of the local computer stores directed me to another store that might be able to help me out. They specialised in older (obsolete) machines. I called them up and ascertained that they could (probably) provide me with software. I flew back to the Sally, hoping that the Kaypro was still there. It was, but they had it priced at $36.00 and I didn't want to spend that much, not knowing if it worked or not. I convinced the manager to sell it to me for half-price, $18.00. I then took it across town to Discount Computers, where I met my soon-to-be best friend, mentor, and fellow collector, Mark Stone. Even then, he was into collecting old computers. He was very informative, and taught me a lot in that first of many conversations. I left a couple of hours later, armed with bootdisks, WordStar, dBaseII, Basic-80, and some other programs which slip my mind at the moment. I was also armed with a basic knowlege of CP/M and how to use it. I left with an appreciation of old computers, and a love for my "new" Kaypro II. I still have it, and prolly always will. It was my first "real" computer...

--T

djkrex
November 22nd, 2003, 09:47 AM
The first computer that I got to put my hands on and program didn't belong to me. I was a Dec IPB-303. I was in an Army school taking a computer course. We used Dec blocks to build logic circuits and test them. Near the end of the course, we went into a lab where they had 4 computers made from these blocks plus some switches, lights and a core memory box. These Dec blocks were about 2 X 4 X 4 alum boxes, each containing 4 logic gates, flip flops etc. The blocks plugged into a metal 3 X 4 rack which supplied power. Each logic circuit was connected by banana plug patch cords. Some blocks had indicatior lights so you couold see how things were working.
The IPB-303 consisted of 2 - 6 foot equipment racks full of these Dec blocks and a tangled mess of patch cords. It only had 100 words of memory and no I/O that I remember other than the lights. Input was through radio style buttons.
I really got hooked on punching in programs into this thing. It was the blinding speed that amazed me. It had a clock that was in the 100's of killohertz (killocycles back then). I made a copy of the diagram and when I got out, was going to try and make one. Too bad I didn't succeed.

Any of you older guys ever seen these Dec Blocks?

Blackcube
November 23rd, 2003, 08:37 AM
Mine was a single board kit ordered out of the back of Popular Electronics magazine in the late '70's. It was described as a kit, so I assumed it would be a plug-in the modules and run kind of kit. It arrived and when I opened the box, a bare PCB greeted me along with a whole raft of discrete passives and chip sockets. It took me a week of working every spare moment with a Rat Shack soldering iron, but it started up and loaded a version of Basic from a cassette tape. Later I added a floppy drive (8") and pirated copy of CP/M. Then it was off to the races.

The kit was made by a no-name company with only a PO Box for an address. I talked to them on the phone when I was patching CP/M's CBIOS for the board and they admitted they operated out of this guy's basement. I found out later, the Basic version was a patched and pirated copy of MS basic for the Altair that Gates and Allen wrote. They dropped out of sight not long after that. I lost the system (if you could call it that) in a breakin of a mini storage unit in the late 80's.

The first commercial computer I owned was a TI-99/4A.

carlsson
November 24th, 2003, 12:26 AM
My older brother purchased a Vic-20 in 1986. About a month or so later, the Commodore dealer was running a promotion of some kind where they were refunding the full purchase price of your Vic, provided you applied the $$$ towards a C-64.
Where did you live to find a dealer still selling VICs in 1986? I thought they went commercially extinct in early 1985. By the way, my first computer was my big brother's VIC, followed by his C64 when he moved on onto other things. I stayed Commodore faithful (Amiga 500+ and 1200) until they went down.
Btw, that Amiga 500+ is the only computer I've ever bought new. The others I've picked up cheap second-hand or for free (including a 300 MHz Pentium-II). I'm afraid the next machine I will buy will cost me money...

Terry Yager
November 24th, 2003, 02:10 PM
We've always been a bit behind the times up here in Michigan...

--T

Rick Ethridge
November 29th, 2003, 08:41 AM
My first computer was a TRS-80 Model I with level 2 basic. I purchased it on sale and spent many hours learning to program. I enjoyed playing SpaceWarp on cassette. I received another much later on with almost all the add-ons which I still have. RLE :D

VintageUser
December 9th, 2003, 01:45 PM
The first computer I ever used was an IBM Model 360 in high school (1977). Punched cards and we programmed in "Full Fortran" - what fun it was to stick an 'Action Map' (instead of the usual 'Action Nomap') into an unsuspecting student's card deck! The next computer I used (1978) was DEC's PDP-8/e - dual TU-56 tape drives and a Teletype 33 ASR (paper-tape) model. In the 'Computer Electronics' curriculum. I was helping in teaching BASIC to my high school class for the PDP-8/e. I now own 2 of these systems and an 8/a.

After graduating (July 1981), I bought a Sinclair ZX-80 for $249 (I know, I know - a few months later they dropped like a stone to $99.00 kit) then the ZX-81 came out at $49 kit, $99 assembled. I would have loved to build my Sinclair as I was into that sort of thing back then. [sigh] Still am - not enough time!

A few months later when the 1K user space of the ZX-80 wasn't enough, I scraped enough money together to buy my first 'real' computer - an Apple ][+ $1,100 mail-order with no diskette drive, no monitor, but I did add a Sup'r'Mod TV modulator for $35. It had 48K RAM ($200 upgrade from the 16K model that I was going to buy) - I figured I would never need it but went for it anyway!! I also wanted to buy prototype boards for the Apple and make relay control boards and such - unfortunately, I never did - but I did have fun and made some money programming for local businesses on it!

I still have both machines (along with about 4 dozen or so other computers that followed me home at various times!)

Take care!

Unknown_K
December 10th, 2003, 03:38 AM
First owned: Timex 2068

First Used: either a friends atari 800 (original not xl) or the trs-80 b&w at school.

Thomas Hillebrandt
December 11th, 2003, 12:37 PM
The first computer I ever interacted with was a CTM mainframe system that was set up at a local radio-station where my father was the programme manager. A beautiful green-monochrome screen with ASCII-graphics :lol: ...I'm still looking for one to put in my collection. This was 1983.

The first computer I ever owned was a C64 MKIII (Brown breadbox with greyish F-keys) - at first with a 1530 tape-drive, but subsequently with a 1541-II drive. All of this has been replaced in the collection by now.. This was 1987.

We'd get to around 1988 or maybe even 1989 before a friend got an Amsclair ZX Spectrum +3, which was my first introduction to homecomputers other than C64 (and the first indication to me that there were others :roll: ), followed closely by another friend, who got an Olivetti M240... Both are still missing from the collection, although there's actually a slim chance that I can gain access to the originals...(WOW!!!)

CP/M User
December 20th, 2003, 09:30 PM
"coimbrap" wrote in message:

> First I owned was an Amstrad CPC 464. Still got it...

Would you still have the 464 manual for that?

I'm after a program out of it, if you could please
type-in & post it here, that would be great!

It's kinda a BASIC demo program, which has this
rocket at the bottom of the screen & a plane which
drops a bomb (at the right hand edge of the screen).
What I like more about it, is the demonstration of
sounds it does.

It would also bring back some great memories! :-)

Cheers,
CP/M User.

CP/M User
December 20th, 2003, 09:40 PM
"Terry Yager" wrote in message:

> What was the first computer you ever owned/used?

First computer used was an Amstrad CPC464 (in 1984).
If an Atari 2600 qualifies as an computer, then that was
the first thing I owned, for memory that was in 1992,
but actually, I did half pay for one IBM XT in 1993! but
I didn't own it outright.

So really the first computer I owned outright was an
Amstrad CPC6128 (I brought second hand in 1994 &
still have it! ;-).

If video games systems classify fall into the catagory,
then I've also had a Nintendo Gameboy (which I since
sold!) & an Atari 7800 which I also got around that
'93/94 period, so really it was a crazy time for video
games! ;-)

Cheers,
CP/M User.

Classicsat
January 4th, 2004, 10:48 AM
First computer I used, was an Apple II+ at school (the school board had one they circulated amongst the elementary schools). The first computer in my home was a Vic20, then a C64, then an Amiga. In 94 or so, I went to PC, with an IBM 5150, then and Epson turbo XT, then varius 286 and newer clones.

CP/M User
January 4th, 2004, 12:17 PM
"Classicsat" wrote:

> First computer I used, was an Apple II+ at
> school (the school board had one they
> circulated amongst the elementary schools).
> The first computer in my home was a Vic20,
> then a C64, then an Amiga. In 94 or so, I
> went to PC, with an IBM 5150, then and
> Epson turbo XT, then varius 286 and newer
> clones.

So are you still into your earlier computers?
Or just consentrate on the early IBMs?

Cheers,
CP/M User.

Classicsat
January 27th, 2004, 11:59 AM
"Classicsat" wrote:

> First computer I used, was an Apple II+ at
> school (the school board had one they
> circulated amongst the elementary schools).
> The first computer in my home was a Vic20,
> then a C64, then an Amiga. In 94 or so, I
> went to PC, with an IBM 5150, then and
> Epson turbo XT, then varius 286 and newer
> clones.

So are you still into your earlier computers?
Or just consentrate on the early IBMs?

Cheers,
CP/M User.

I just have some XT and higher PCs. I dn't do a lot with them.

The Amiga 500 is still around (would like the second system diskette
though, has Amiga Basic and the PC floppy utilities).

I have a couple CoCo 2s, no software or accessories for them to make
them useful (although I could make the cassette cord, and do have some Tandy DMPs with the tandy RS232 cable).

I have a C-64 (with 1541 drive and plenty of games), and a VIC 20 (Needs Basic ROM chip).

billdeg
January 27th, 2004, 04:46 PM
First computer used PET ??? in the library at school. The first program I wrote was on the TI-99/4A.

~llama
January 27th, 2004, 04:59 PM
my first computer was an Apple //e we bought surplus from the school system in... 1990 or so. Oregon Trail is fun.

The first computer we had that was for the whole family to use (not just me lol) was a Macintosh Performa 578, which is still kickin and is on the table next to me :)

DoctorPepper
February 16th, 2004, 03:39 PM
My first computer was a VIC-20 with a cassette tape.

My friend and I drove down to Circuit City in Virginia Beach and picked them up.

My most memorable event with said VIC-20 was when I was loading a program off of tape, and had been for quite a while. All of a sudden, some guy drove by my apartment, keyed-down on his CB, and reset my computer! Man, I was very mad!

After that, I went out and got a C-64. My friend did as well.

MayboyVCF
February 28th, 2004, 08:18 AM
My first computer was a Commodore 64 i got it christmas of 1993 and still have and use it today :) Ive got over 200 games, and have nothing but fond memories

CP/M User
February 28th, 2004, 12:21 PM
"MayboyVCF" wrote:

> My first computer was a Commodore 64 i got
> it christmas of 1993 and still have and use it
> today :) Ive got over 200 games, and have
> nothing but fond memories

So that was brand new when you got it then?

Oh well, glad you enjoyed it! :-)

Cheers,
CP/M User.

shirkahn
February 28th, 2004, 09:40 PM
My first box was the venerable TI-99/4a which was good for a few games and learing to do graphics. I desperatly wanted a modem, but the family outing to see "Wargames" set my mother against any thought of that. We eventually moved up to a Tandy 1000 but again, my mothers objections overruled my father and I's desire for a modem.
Midway through college, my employer gave me his mothers TRS-80 Model II complete with a then blindingly fast 300 baud modem. This was durring the hayday of BBS's in the late 80'-early 90's. The TI is long since gone but the Mod II I still have. Unfortunatly its in storage due to a bad drive controller.

Thomas Hillebrandt
February 29th, 2004, 12:59 AM
So that was brand new when you got it then?

Actually, it probably was. In the spring, 1994, Commodore announced that "next year" they'd be discontinuing the production of the C64 (mind you, 13 years after it was launched), because the production costs of the disk drives was too expensive - not because they couldn't sell them! They went bankrupt only a few months later, of course, so production ceased already then, but...Effectively, the C64 was produced up until the end of Commodore..
So a brand new one in 1993 wouldn't be so strange... :wink:

MayboyVCF
February 29th, 2004, 03:31 AM
"MayboyVCF" wrote:

> My first computer was a Commodore 64 i got
> it christmas of 1993 and still have and use it
> today :) Ive got over 200 games, and have
> nothing but fond memories

So that was brand new when you got it then?

Oh well, glad you enjoyed it! :-)

Cheers,
CP/M User.

Hi, yeah it was brand new and was around 150 which looking back now sounds a bit heafty :shock: Only prob was the commodore was on its way out by that stage, so finding games in the coming years were very hard to find :( Thank god for ebay and bootfairs hehe plenty there for the right price

CP/M User
March 2nd, 2004, 12:55 AM
"MayboyVCF" wrote:

> Hi, yeah it was brand new and
> was around 150 which looking
> back now sounds a bit heafty
> :shock: Only prob was the
> commodore was on its way out
> by that stage, so finding games
> in the coming years were very
> hard to find :( Thank god for
> ebay and bootfairs hehe plenty
> there for the right price

Oh okay. A simular thing happened
with the Amstrad CPC464 &
CPC6128, where they were selling
new upto the launch of the Newer
CPC Plus machines. The CPC664
was the other earlier model which
ceased earlier due to the CPC6128
being basically the same machine
& also more memory.

I'm unsure what happened with the
CPC Plus, however they didn't have
the same level of success as the
earlier models.

Cheers,
CP/M User.

tradde
March 6th, 2004, 04:17 PM
The first computer I ever used was a DEC pdp-8i in high school and then
later the same machine while attending the college where it was located.
Those were the days of blinking lights and loading code with paper tape.
The first computer I ever owned was the original Altair 8800 with just
256 bytes of memory. I now have a pdp-8i of my own along with several
other DEC machines. Keeps me out of trouble and I always liked machines
with blinking lights.
Tim R

Barry
March 13th, 2004, 01:20 PM
The first computer I programmed was an IBM 360/20. A very small mainframe. Smaller than a lot of minis, if the term mini was even used then. I didn't hear it till a few years later. That was in the programming school I went to. I think it was about 1967.

Next was a Univac 9000, another very small machine. Then we got an RCA Spectra 78 and a Univac 9400 and I was in heaven. So much memory! The Univac had 84k. Unbelievable.

Those were both in the days of core memory, before chip memory was used. They both had disc that was used for booting but not for storage. Storage was tape. Input was with punch cards. Later we upgraded to input with floppy disk but most of our programs still expected cards and there wasn't really much transition while I worked there.

My first exposure to a micro was a few years later on an Apple 2+ that someone I knew bought. I helped her set up Peachtree accounting on it. It was in Basic back then and it wouldn't quite work for her so I made a few simple changes and that was how I learned Basic.

The first computer I owned was a Radio Shack Color Computer. I had that for a number of years and had a great time playing with it. It was just tape for a few years and when the price of a floppy drive dropped to $499 I bought one. Back in heaven! :)

Barry

pogo
May 18th, 2004, 01:12 AM
First machine I ever got my hands on was a Commodore PET 4032 - the school's computer. What a beastie! Weighed a ton. Spent an entire free period at school on day typing in a listing for a game from "Your Computer" magazine. Bloody thing crashed as soon as I tried to run it (a dodgy POKE... :roll:). Doh.

The first computer I ever owned was a ZX81 - still got it, and it still works :D

Nowadays I tend to focus on Xerox software - the Mesa development environment and a derivative of the original Star desktop (GlobalView). Sucker for punishment, I guess, bred in from my early ZX81 experiences :lol: