Boyhood 1st computer back to life.

RhianB

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After 3 decades of dry storage, my first pc still runs :D
D95CECFC-8338-4CC1-855E-1136F1FE85F2.jpeg

I literally haven’t booted this particular box up since what - 1991-92 maybe? IIRC the fam got this in 85 but it lived in my room so naturally I used it the most. Mom was going to use it for word processing but the electric type writer won that battle, so it was mine. Gunna have some fun with this lil guy as I still have my entire software catalog cartridge & floppy as well as my dot matrix 1529 printer.

Any of you have your first computer Mac or not?
 

Adamscomputerrepair

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Aug 9, 2015
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My first computer was built from scrap parts my cousin was throwing out. My family was extremely poor and couldn’t afford one. We had a Windows 98 PC in 2003. It worked, don’t get me wrong, but I can’t categorize what make or model it was. It had a gateway motherboard, Hynix ram, a Dell CD drive and ironically, a 14 inch Apple Cinema Display with an adapter he didn’t want because he had the 23 inch.
 
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eyoungren

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First computer. TRS-80 CoCo. My dad brought it home some time in 1981 (I was 10). Wasn't mine though and was kept in a separate room.



The summer of 1984 saw a C64 for me. So, second computer, but first one I could say was mine. My mom was a teacher in small, private, Christian schools and that required a lot of flexibility in the subjects she taught. One of those was Computer Science so there was any number of computers in the house at any given point.

By '86 we had multiple CoCos and at least 12 MC-10s, a Timex Sinclair 1000 (with thermal printer) and a bunch of VIC-20s.

Late '86 I was running The Gauntlet BBS part time (nights and weekends) on the C64 using All American BBS (AABBS). The C64 was perfect for AABBS because Nick Smith used glorious color where most BBS's at the time were monochrome.

By '89 I had a C128, two 1541s and two 1581s and my BBS was 24/7 (I had a separate phone line). I also bought a second-hand Hayes 1200 modem.

1990 saw my first PC AT286 and there was a string of PCs from there until my first Mac in 2001. My mom was entirely Mac from 1992 on though so I was definitely familiar with Macs.

Somewhere in there ('94 I think) was an Amiga 1000 with a 1mb sidecar).

All the old computers got given away to the church of the pastor who dedicated me as a baby. They were starting a computer lab. No idea what happened to them after that. I'd like to get a C128 back though. Fun times.

EDIT: Oh yeah, we knew a family friend who was good with electronics and he wired up a soft-reset button for my C64. Sat right near the red power light. Made it useful to restart without having to turn the power switch off, then back on. It's funny because I see normal C64s and I automatically look for the reset switch and of course it's not there.
 
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smirking

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Any of you have your first computer Mac or not?
My first computer that was all my own is an Atari 1040ST. It's in my garage. I haven't tried to turn it on in years and it was probably a bad call to store it in the garage. It's in a sealed tub, but the heat in the garage can't have done the old floppies any favors.

I've been wanting to haul it down from the shelves in my garage for the past two years. I just have to get around to doing it. It worked fine the last time I turned it on around 15 years ago.
 

eyoungren

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My first computer that was all my own is an Atari 1040ST. It's in my garage. I haven't tried to turn it on in years and it was probably a bad call to store it in the garage. It's in a sealed tub, but the heat in the garage can't have done the old floppies any favors.

I've been wanting to haul it down from the shelves in my garage for the past two years. I just have to get around to doing it. It worked fine the last time I turned it on around 15 years ago.
I had a friend who had a Colecovision. At one point he got the Adam expansion and so was able to use it like an Adam.

I was also able to play with a few Atari systems as the piano instructor my mom took my sister and I to had those (and Atari computers) for her kids.

That was a fun time when no one knew which way computer systems would go.
- - Post merged: - -

Any of you have your first computer Mac or not?
Oh!

Forgot to mention. That brown desk that my Macs have sat on in all the pics I post about them? I got that when I was 15. My dad bought it precisely to hold my C64 and a Star Micronics SG-10 dot matrix printer. Over the years it's been separated so I could fit other computers on it. It's supposed to have a top part with two doors, but that got removed (and is in the garage).

So…that I still have. 34 years old. :)
 
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smirking

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First computer. TRS-80 CoCo. My dad brought it home some time in 1981 (I was 10). Wasn't mine though and was kept in a separate room.
Actually, my real first computer was pretty close to yours! It was a TRS-80 Model 1. I don't count it as my first computer because it was my Dad's. He just had no clue how to use it. Anytime he had to do something on it, he'd have to call me. I was all of 8 years old and was walking him through the file system so he could run some Word Processing program.

I never knew what possessed him to get one of those when he had no clue how to use it. I recently learned that he got it in a trade with someone who wanted one of his products, but lacked the budget. The other guy was selling TRS-80's and offered a trade of one TRS-80 for a chip tester that my dad was making. He brought the computer home and let me have at it for a few months before he moved it to his office.
 

eyoungren

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Actually, my real first computer was pretty close to yours! It was a TRS-80 Model 1. I don't count it as my first computer because it was my Dad's. He just had no clue how to use it. Anytime he had to do something on it, he'd have to call me. I was all of 8 years old and was walking him through the file system so he could run some Word Processing program.

I never knew what possessed him to get one of those when he had no clue how to use it. I recently learned that he got it in a trade with someone who wanted one of his products, but lacked the budget. The other guy was selling TRS-80's and offered a trade of one TRS-80 for a chip tester that my dad was making. He brought the computer home and let me have at it for a few months before he moved it to his office.
Like you I never got a reason as to why my dad got our CoCo. I suspect it was a matter of keeping up with the Joneses type of thing, but you didn't question my dad without running the risk of being yelled at so I never asked.

We had a CoCo 2 at one point as well, along with the Model 1 but I was so used to the Trash-80 that I didn't use them much. I can remember going into Radio Shack though and just being wowed by all the electronic gadgets in the store. Back when they were selling computers it was like entering Nirvana. We used to play around with the store display Model 1s a lot.
 
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defjam

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Sep 15, 2019
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My first computer was an Atari 400 which my family won in a contest. It was a drawing where entrants could enter as many times as they liked. So my mom would pick up a stack of entry forms and we would sit at the kitchen table and fill them out. Probably filled out a few hundred of them. It was no surprise we won. I remember my mom making a comment the manager of the store where the drawing was held didn't look too pleased. But hey, we followed the rules. Unfortunately we got rid of it when I stepped up to the Atari 800XL.

atari400.JPG


EDIT: Grammar
 
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eyoungren

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My first computer was an Atari 400 which my family one in a contest. It was a drawing where would could enter as many times as we liked. So my mom would pick up a stack of entry forms and we would sit at the kitchen table and fill them out. Probably filled out a few hundred of them. It was no surprise we won. I remember my mom making a comment the manager of the store where the drawing was held didn't look too pleased. But hey, we followed the rules. Unfortunately we got rid of it when I stepped up to the Atari 800XL.

View attachment 893199
I remember that system! It was pretty cool.
 
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defjam

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After 3 decades of dry storage, my first pc still runs :D

I literally haven’t booted this particular box up since what - 1991-92 maybe? IIRC the fam got this in 85 but it lived in my room so naturally I used it the most. Mom was going to use it for word processing but the electric type writer won that battle, so it was mine. Gunna have some fun with this lil guy as I still have my entire software catalog cartridge & floppy as well as my dot matrix 1529 printer.

Any of you have your first computer Mac or not?
The C64 was a great computer and us Atari 8-bit users nemesis :) I've learned a lot about the various 8-bit computers since then and I was surprised how advanced the C64 and Atari computers were. When these were current I always looked at Apple as the more advanced computer. Today I realize the C64 and Atari systems were more capable, at least in stock form, than the contemporary Apple offerings.

Glad to see it still operational as I've learned the C64 has a lot of chips which tend to fail.
- - Post merged: - -

My first computer that was all my own is an Atari 1040ST. It's in my garage. I haven't tried to turn it on in years and it was probably a bad call to store it in the garage. It's in a sealed tub, but the heat in the garage can't have done the old floppies any favors.

I've been wanting to haul it down from the shelves in my garage for the past two years. I just have to get around to doing it. It worked fine the last time I turned it on around 15 years ago.
You may want to pull it out of storage and fire it up. If you're not interested in using it they're fetching decent money on Ebay.
 

weckart

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Nov 7, 2004
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Not my first, but my elder brother had the first computer in our household and he had a Sinclair Z80. You could either buy it assembled (he did) or in kit form saving £20.



The keys had zero travel and were a pain to type on, pretty much like on an iPad except you had to press harder. Software, such as it was, was loaded via cassette tape. It could take half an hour to load a smallish program and it failed more often than not towards the end. An exercise in frustration. Sadly, we threw this (and the Oric Atmos that followed) out a while back before they started fetching several times their selling price on eBay. Oh, well.
 

defjam

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Not my first, but my elder brother had the first computer in our household and he had a Sinclair Z80. You could either buy it assembled (he did) or in kit form saving £20.



The keys had zero travel and were a pain to type on, pretty much like on an iPad except you had to press harder. Software, such as it was, was loaded via cassette tape. It could take half an hour to load a smallish program and it failed more often than not towards the end. An exercise in frustration. Sadly, we threw this (and the Oric Atmos that followed) out a while back before they started fetching several times their selling price on eBay. Oh, well.
I recall using the Timex Sinclair 1000 variant of the ZX81. Cool computer but was RAM limited (though not as much as the ZX80). In the days where 8GB is consider insufficient for a lot of people it's hard to believe 1KB was usable, if you want to call it that, at one point.
 

niji

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Feb 9, 2003
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After 3 decades of dry storage, my first pc still runs :D
View attachment 893185
I literally haven’t booted this particular box up since what - 1991-92 maybe? IIRC the fam got this in 85 but it lived in my room so naturally I used it the most. Mom was going to use it for word processing but the electric type writer won that battle, so it was mine. Gunna have some fun with this lil guy as I still have my entire software catalog cartridge & floppy as well as my dot matrix 1529 printer.

Any of you have your first computer Mac or not?
thanks.
looking at the keyboard layout, i wonder when the @ mark began to appear as a top level key on ascii keyboard layouts above the number 2 key.
 
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RhianB

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thanks.
looking at the keyboard layout, i wonder when the @ mark began to appear as a top level key on ascii keyboard layouts above the number 2 key.
No Idea @niji. I've seen the @/2 key on IBM model Ms as early as 1984, so presumably even before that, but to me points to a standard that formed around IBM with their popular M keyboard specifically as their Model Fs of the same era for example don't have them. Neither does this C64 and it is of that era as well.

@eyoungren That is awesome about the desk. The desk I had at that time is loooooong gone as it almost assuredly did not survive the move from Ohio to the desert southwest. Also on that desk was my NES and Atari2800 both utilizing the 1702 C64 monitor but I wont bore you all with my gaming stuff :p.

@smirking My Dad wrapped all of his ham radio kit (which was extensive) along with this computer tightly in saran wrap before the move. All of that kit lived in dry storage for a year while we moved across the country and then we went back for it. Once it made it out here, I had moved on in terms of computers building my first 486 and the C64 just lived in my Mom n Dad's guest bedroom closet for the last 30 years or so. So aside from that year and some change in non-climate controlled storage, it has been in a dry (arid high desert) low-moisture, dark, climate controlled environment. You should totally break yours out of garage bondage :D
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You guys had so many different personal computers. It amazes me how varied the personal computer market was even then. I grew up and lived out in the middle of rural Ohio on a farm until we moved, so all I knew computer wise was the single apple computer at elementary school and my C64. Imagine that - a single computer for an entire school of children. In their defense it was 1984 and the computer did have wheels lol. Those were the good ol' days & wow, how things have changed & an entire industry has grown up around us. :apple:
 
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swamprock

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My first computer, at age 8. Had a tape recorder to load/save programs to/from. I learned BASIC on it, then later, Z80 assembly language. Wrote a few crappy games, then took my Z80 asm knowledge at age 13 and wrote a game on the TRS-80 Model III that got published in Canada, called Zap! I haven't seen the tape image for that game turn up on any of the TRS-80 archive sites, which isn't surprising since it probably sold around 200 copies. Never saw a penny in royalties. I no longer have my copy of the game, unfortunately...

EDIT: Time and memory have gotten away from me. I actually learned 6502 assembly on this machine, and Z80 on the TRS-80. We had the TRS-80s in the computer lab at school, and my friend Ray helped me learn how a processor with a stack worked :)
 
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RhianB

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My first computer, at age 8. Had a tape recorder to load/save programs to/from. I learned BASIC on it, then later, Z80 assembly language. Wrote a few crappy games, then took my Z80 asm knowledge at age 13 and wrote a game on the TRS-80 Model III that got published in Canada, called Zap! I haven't seen the tape image for that game turn up on any of the TRS-80 archive sites, which isn't surprising since it probably sold around 200 copies. Never saw a penny in royalties. I no longer have my copy of the game, unfortunately...
That's a drag man. Somebody has to have that game somewhere. Gives me a reason to scour used tape stacks now when I'm out thrifting. OK, that's it, once I get my toddler to sleep, I'm totally going to play some ZORK or legacy of the ancients. Always loved the cover art on the LOTA game.
 
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weckart

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I didn't get my actual own computer until the mid 90s when my brother bought me one out of the blue. It was an Escom DX66/2 and dual booted Win 3.11 and OS/2 Warp 3.0. Escom was a discount beige box assembler that became huge in its home country of Germany and expanded rapidly including the UK. I think it ended up buying Commodore at one stage.

Mine was the basic model, as you could also get Pentium equipped boxes with Win 95. All software was preinstalled and there was a utility you could create installation floppies from for both OSes and installed software like MS Works. You needed something like 38 floppies for OS/2 alone, so it was a drag. The premium models came with extra goodies like Lotus Smartsuite for OS/2, which I couldn't find on mine so I went to the shop and somehow blagged a CD of that plus manual for £1. Apparently, my base model wasn't licensed for that and I should not have been given/sold the software or any of the other CDs I walked out with.

Escom folded in the UK shortly aftwards after racking up huge losses, partly due to lax financial controls and I feel partly responsible for its demise. Sorry Escom.
 

Project Alice

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I actually have my first one, too. It's a Packardbell (I was born in 1994 for reference) my grandmother had me started using this PC when I was 2 apparently (though I don't remember). I do remember using this PC later. It still works, and has had some upgrades, hence the DVD drive.
IMG_1696.jpg IMG_1697.jpg
I don't have my first mac anymore unfortunately. It was a RevB iMac G3 grape. I do however have my second and third macs, and I've owned them for about 13 years. An Indago iMac 500Mhz, and a Dual USB iBook G3, also 500Mhz. Both of those are also fully functional.
 
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Amethyst1

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@Project Alice: I somehow get a kick out of those stickers that proudly show off what today are all but laughable specs. Windows 95 on 8MB RAM? Ugh.
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@weckart: I remember Escom being huge in Germany. Along with Vobis IIRC, they were the main suppliers of OS/2-preloaded boxes.
 
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eyoungren

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I actually have my first one, too. It's a Packardbell (I was born in 1994 for reference) my grandmother had me started using this PC when I was 2 apparently (though I don't remember). I do remember using this PC later. It still works, and has had some upgrades, hence the DVD drive.
My mother bought me a Packard Bell in '93 (I think, can't exactly remember the year). My first 486. We had to return it because somewhere, somehow during shipping somebody had stolen the CPU out of it. I still have the 486 paperwork and folder for that computer but it's long gone now. However, the computer did have the distinction of hosting my very first 1GB hard drive that I purchased new for $300.
- - Post merged: - -

@eyoungren That is awesome about the desk. The desk I had at that time is loooooong gone as it almost assuredly did not survive the move from Ohio to the desert southwest. Also on that desk was my NES and Atari2800 both utilizing the 1702 C64 monitor but I wont bore you all with my gaming stuff :p.
Well, it's just me and my frustrating ability to hang on to things and not left go, LOL. Despite being really old it's survived because all I've ever done with it was stick things on top of it. It's light and easy to move and so has gone from my parents house to San Bernardino, CA, Banning, CA and a 400+ mile move in a U-Haul to Phoenix. And then one more move to the new house.

PS. I get the rural thing. For whatever reason, my parents chose to live 45 minutes from civilization. Once I discovered the BBS and other people out there, a permanent online connection from my brain got hardwired. It enabled me to leave the confines of my room and engage with others.
 
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RhianB

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I actually have my first one, too. It's a Packardbell (I was born in 1994 for reference) my grandmother had me started using this PC when I was 2 apparently (though I don't remember). I do remember using this PC later. It still works, and has had some upgrades, hence the DVD drive.
View attachment 893256View attachment 893257
I don't have my first mac anymore unfortunately. It was a RevB iMac G3 grape. I do however have my second and third macs, and I've owned them for about 13 years. An Indago iMac 500Mhz, and a Dual USB iBook G3, also 500Mhz. Both of those are also fully functional.
@Project Alice It's really cool that you kept the original spec stickers on them. In 1996 when the 4610 was made, I was 18 & enrolled in my first semester of Culinary school. I imagine the computer lab at the school was full of similarly spec'd machines. "Legend" that's some amusing marketing in 2020 :)
 
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