U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
Old 12-05-2018, 12:41 PM
510 posts, read 303,162 times
Reputation: 2502


Originally Posted by jim9251 View Post
Free porn!
More or less, this. ha ha! But I retired at age 38 in 1996. I had heard of the internet. Only a few computer types in the, otherwise high tech building I worked in, had it and nobody I knew had it at home.

One of the first things I did after the First Day of the Rest of My Life was buy a Pentium-I machine and went online to see what this internet thing was.

Another thing that impacted me was I met some nice, educated, interesting people in political oriented chat rooms. Yes, believe it or not! Not at all like today! Some, I stayed connected with for several years and one is still my friend and we speak often despite never actually having met.

I think the web was initially a draw to educated, intellectually inclined knowledge seekers. In the broad sense. Not just people looking for recipes or that kind of knowledge. And maybe people who were not socially facile in person but online, they could loosen up a little and mingle. Just an observation.

Then it became democratized and that sort of lowered the standards by definition. Nothing personal intended here but the contrast between mid-to-late 90's internet experiences and today, regarding my online personal experiences, is like when the Europeans met the Native Americans. Or when the Roman Legions met the Celts and the Picts.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

Old 12-05-2018, 02:09 PM
61 posts, read 30,532 times
Reputation: 234
I first became aware of computers because my DH was given a portable phone to be "on call" for the hospital where he worked. When I was in my 20s I took several programming classes (FORTRAN and COBOL, anybody remember those?). I was even accepted to a masters' program in computer science, but then decided I still liked being a librarian better. Fast forward a few years to the late 80s and automation had caught up with the library field. By the mid 90s, my then-boss got a grant to bring the Internet to our campus, and guess who got to teach everyone else to use it? Yup, me and my librarian co-workers. It was a challenge to be teaching people who far outranked us, but it had to be done. Then I became a systems librarian and was responsible for the automation and computers we depended upon to do our daily work. Very stressful, but also fascinating and challenging.

Now that I am semi-retired, I enjoy many recreational activities courtesy of computers: reading, watching, and learning. Although I take a somewhat jaundiced view of social media these days, I am still excited to see what will be next.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-05-2018, 02:14 PM
Location: Idaho
1,451 posts, read 1,153,086 times
Reputation: 5472
Originally Posted by Sand&Salt View Post
Was it mostly in your work, or was your first experience at home? What year? What was your initial reaction?
I first used the internet in the form of LAN and ARPANET while at MIT in 1985. I thought it was so cool to control/access my lab PCs on various floors from my office PC. Whenever my thesis advisor went to Cambridge England, we used Arpanet to communicate (sending research status update, draft publications back and forth).

My husband enjoyed programming (started with his TI programmable calculator), and I am a born geek so we are early PCs and internet users (we had TRS-80, Apple II, IBM PC XT/AT shortly after they came out). I wrote my M.S. thesis using Wordstar (in the mid 80's) and later on my Ph.D. thesis (in the late 80's) with probably the earliest version of MS Word.

At home, we subscribed first to Prodigy and later to AOL in the late 80's or early 90's. I think the earliest dial up modem we had was 9600 bps. We upgraded to faster modems as early as they are available (14.4kps, 28.8kbps, 33.6kbps and 56kbps). Back then, webpages were not loaded with all kind of graphics, videos and audios so it was not much of a problem. It would be very frustrating to use dial up modems nowadays.

I think the internet is a wonderful thing to have. Everything is at your fingertips.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-05-2018, 04:54 PM
3,542 posts, read 1,350,218 times
Reputation: 6929
your first experience at home? when my company bought laptops for us.
What year? 1996 W95.
What was your initial reaction? sort of like a new puppy.
fun to play with. feed updates. clean up accidents.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-05-2018, 05:05 PM
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
7,609 posts, read 4,680,291 times
Reputation: 27841
Originally Posted by BellaDL View Post
I wrote my M.S. thesis using Wordstar (in the mid 80's)

William F. Buckley Jr. was still using WordStar up until he died in 2008.

I don't have that kind of allegiance to any text editor, not even GNU Emacs, which I learned with no small amount of trouble. Still remember some of the commands.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-05-2018, 05:16 PM
Location: SoCal
13,200 posts, read 6,308,074 times
Reputation: 9815
My first job out of college I started using computer, we had Ethernet, maybe it was called DECnet, we were about to send email to other people within the company. But to connect to the web, I didn’t start until 1992, I remember reading different newsgroup at home in my spare time.
Btw, one of my direct ex-bosses was the father of ARPANET, his face was on the front page of Newsweek magazine, an MIT fellow. So yeah, we are all connected somehow. Geeks and Nerds abound.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-05-2018, 05:26 PM
Location: ☀️ SWFL ⛱ 🌴
2,427 posts, read 1,664,703 times
Reputation: 8643
Technology affected me first and the internet was the cherry on top. I worked with computers for CT/MR scanners and nuclear medicine scanners starting in 1984. I learned early that a reboot was the universal answer for almost every problem. I had no fear or trepidation of technology by the time personal computers came along. Instead of sending service engineers for problems, the manufacturers came in through the backend to do software fixes, relegating the service engineers to mainly hardware issues. Amazing!

We had a TI-99, all 16mb, and thought it was great. We moved onto PC’s and got into DOS commands and installing more memory and sound boards by the early 90’s. I love to solve problems and those early models gave me plenty. We signed onto Prodigy and then AOL later: omg, the sound of dial-up and having puny baud rates! I was in heaven though, I was in contact with people all over the place!

I spent six hours one day chasing my tail with a Trojan that renamed itself every time I rebooted my PC. I shut it down, drove to the nearest Apple store and bought my first laptop, the internet was on my lap. I mainly use a phone or iPad these days. My favorite thing to do is to google a movie we are watching to find out what actor is in it that we can’t identify, the make of a car in a scene, the location etc.. Or put in the first line of a song to find out the song title and artist. I look up everything I don’t know, which can be a lot of screen time some days!

Last edited by jean_ji; 12-05-2018 at 06:55 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-05-2018, 06:29 PM
6,348 posts, read 3,574,336 times
Reputation: 7262
My husband is a Programmer and we had a computer going way back. Genealogy got me started on the Internet back in the 90's. Before then I researched the old fashioned way writing for records, going to libraries, etc. I found out that I could join groups on the Net for overseas genealogy. Emailed others in the UK who helped me trace my family and told me about online sites where I could find British Census records, etc. I bought a software program back in the late 90's to keep my records on.

Over the years, more and more records went online for genealogy.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-05-2018, 06:55 PM
2,225 posts, read 1,096,227 times
Reputation: 9081
Originally Posted by Sand&Salt View Post
Was it mostly in your work, or was your first experience at home? What year? What was your initial reaction?
I first used it in 1993 at work. The first thing I did was look up my family name. It only brought up eight names in the entire country. I was disappointed and confused, thinking, wow there has to be more of us than that, this internet thing is worthless! Then I realized there were eight names per page, not eight names total. That's the first thing I remember doing on the internet.

After that, I watched cat videos, looked up gardening information, and watched more cat videos, pretty much the same thing I do today.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-05-2018, 07:43 PM
6,301 posts, read 3,566,992 times
Reputation: 22023
I was first introduced to the computer at work in the 1980s when we began to use it to individualize treatment programs for our patients. There was a standard template into which you could add or subtract patient specific tasks. It used floppy discs.

The time-saving quality of it's use was very much appreciated but other than that I was disinterested in having anything similar for home use. But by the mid-Nineties it became apparent that we were being left behind in the information world and so we reluctantly bought our first computer.

I immediately fell in love. "Never mind," my friends said, "you'll soon tire of it."

But that hasn't proved true at all and every day I visit somewhere new by webcam and also try to learn at least one new fact every day. I also like to visit places by webcam where I've traveled.

I've used it to learn new skills, for recipes, to read the local newspaper, to play word games to keep me on my toes. I research topics I'm interested in, use it to shop and to read. Find videos that are mood-elevators and to visit with strangers around the world. It does my mail, plays my music and educates me. I can copy free sewing patterns and piano music from it and learn how to make myself a pretty necklace and pair of earrings.

I think - How lucky I am to have the world's libraries (and more) at my disposal!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.

Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top