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Old 05-15-2007, 09:13 PM
28,627 posts, read 40,609,166 times
Reputation: 37303


Remember Adam Osborne? He sold a very popular portable (25 lb) computer starting in 1981. Things looked rosy until he announced he was going to start building a color version of the same product.

Everyone decided to wait for the color version, his sales dropped drastically, and he went broke.
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Old 05-15-2007, 10:58 PM
Location: Sherman Oaks, CA
6,252 posts, read 15,619,420 times
Reputation: 8148
When I first went online, a 1200b modem was the standard (!). 2400 was screamin' fast. However, my father had built a Vector computer, and it had a... <drum roll, please!> 300b modem!!! When I was online on a BBS (bulletin board system for you young people!), I could watch the characters forming! Needless to say, that didn't work too well. How long ago was this? Umm... 1990!
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Old 05-16-2007, 05:18 PM
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 25,082,709 times
Reputation: 3857
I started with an Apple. It was rather a challenge, but I stayed at the lab for about 15 hours until I mastered her--not looked back since, and moved from one PC-compatible to another until I switched back to MAC again a few years ago.

I think with that first Apple (around mid 80s perhaps) it was the printer that had me stumped. The office was wall-to-wall paper!
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Old 05-16-2007, 11:24 PM
4,285 posts, read 14,539,609 times
Reputation: 3868
Ah, the good old days of the TRS-80 Model 1. A startling 4K RAM, a cassette tape recorder for data storage, BASIC as a programming language, and a keyboard that "bounced" extra characters into your script on a regular basis.
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Old 05-17-2007, 12:41 AM
Location: Way on the outskirts of LA LA land.
3,040 posts, read 10,536,781 times
Reputation: 1932
Well, here's what I was exposed to as a kid:

First computer I got to program: DEC PDP/11 - We generated a series of punch cards then mailed them downtown to the L.A. Unified School District HQ to be run. We got them back about two weeks later, with a printout of the output. If we made an error the first time, we would correct it, and wait two more weeks to see if we debugged it correctly!

First computer in my household: Sinclair ZX-81 - This was my brother's computer. It had a Zilog Z80A CPU, and three other chips on board. They were the RAM, the ROM, and I believe an Input/Output chip that controlled everything the others didn't. It was a very basic computer, but was also very slow. It could be used with a portable tape recorder to store programs, but that was only if the tape recorder was good enough to accurately reproduce the sounds generated by the computer. The basic computer had 1 kilobyte of RAM, but my brother also sprung for the 16K expansion pack.

First computer a friend owned: Radio Shack TRS-80 Color Computer (Co-co) - This had 16K of onboard memory, if I am remembering this correctly. It also had a Z-80A CPU, running at a blazing 2.77 MHz, I think.

First desktop computer at school: Radio Shack TRS-80 Model I - This one also had 16K, I believe. It came with the basic unit built into the monitor, with a keyboard that was tethered to it. The screen was monochrome (black & white), and only displayed upper case characters.

The first computer I owned: Commodore Vic-20 - This was jointly owned by my brother and me. There were several others who mentioned this "system" so I won't really add to what's been said.

The first computer of my own: Timex-Sinclair TS 2068 - I saw one post above regarding the Spectrum. This was the first color computer produced by Sinclair Computer Company, but came in many variations. In North America, it was manufactured and sold by the Timex Corporation, famous for wristwatches. Timex sold the TS-1000, which was a 2K version of the Sinclair ZX-81 mentioned above. They also had the TS-2000, which I believe was never put into production. This was just a copy of the original Sinclair Spectrum. They took this basic machine and added some cool features, like a memory card slot, a better keyboard, and 48K of RAM, along with an updated "operating system," and created the TS-2068, which is what went into production. Before it even hit the stores, though, Timex declared that they were losing money in computers, so they got out of the business. The TS-2068s that were produced were sold through a handful of distributors, along with a few of the peripheral devices that were actually produced. One of those was a 300 baud acoustic coupler type modem. I was not fortunate enough to get one of these. They also had a plug in thermal printer that printed on paper that was 4.5 inches wide. That was pretty much all you could get in the way of accessories, though there were some aftermarket companies that had some cool stuff.

Other computers I've had: Packard Bell 386 SX-25, 2 MB RAM, 105 MB HD

Generic 486 DX2-66 with math co-processor, 8 MB RAM, 210MB HD

Too many AMD Athlon/Duron and Intel Pentium/Celeron systems to mention, as well as several newer systems, including a 64 bit Athlon64 system.

Last edited by jdavid93225; 05-17-2007 at 12:45 AM.. Reason: forgot a couple systems
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Old 05-21-2007, 07:50 AM
6,351 posts, read 19,525,556 times
Reputation: 9926
The first computer I ever used was the terminals for the USAF's God-awful "CAMS (Core Automated Maintenance System), which was the first aircraft maintenance data entry system. In some cases, it took longer to do the data entry than to do the job... At home, I also had a Commodore 64.
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Old 05-21-2007, 04:04 PM
688 posts, read 2,790,936 times
Reputation: 285
Originally Posted by AksarbeN View Post
I had a Texas Instruments TI-99 or 94

Before that I had a “rock and a stick” it worked well and never crashed.
Me too - with the ultra-modern voice synthesizer!
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Old 05-21-2007, 04:52 PM
Location: Home is where we park it.
3,098 posts, read 8,405,209 times
Reputation: 3195
Husband had an 8080 as his first.

Mine was a 485 and yes, I thought it was great (at the time, )

We build our own PC's now but did go to the "dark side" when Vista came out. We celebrated by buying an iMac desktop.

ONLY because there is still some software that is only for PC have we not made a complete switch, LOL. Mac's are SO easy to set up. Liz
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Old 05-22-2007, 11:02 AM
Location: Vero Beach, Fl
2,949 posts, read 12,279,158 times
Reputation: 2079
My first computer was a Kaypro - does anyone remember them?
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Old 05-22-2007, 12:23 PM
Location: Maple Valley, WA
980 posts, read 3,029,228 times
Reputation: 418
Yep, I had the Commodore 64, made the ball bounce on the screen....
Check the shirt! I think I'm going to buy it to add to my collection:

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