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Old 01-08-2010, 10:53 AM   #21
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And of course, this was my first:

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Old 01-08-2010, 12:16 PM   #22
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Ah. Reminds me ... that PDP-9 I mentioned a few posts ago had two teletypes. The TTY's provided the only online printing capability (if you can call it that) for the PDP-9. The alternative was punching paper tape on the PDP-9 and interpreting it using an offline (not connected) Friden FlexWriter. The Flexwriter was much faster than the TTY's and was kinda fun to see in action. The PDP-9 also had two Hazeltine monitors which were considered sortof advanced for the time -- early to mid 70's.

But this was not my first exposure -- first exposure was 029 keypunch input to a 370/145 running OS/VS1 in 1973. I guess they were on the edge -- running an OS operating system (as opposed to DOS) and one with virtual storage at that.

Lots of people loathed card input and I did, too . . . until I had to use that paper tape.

That MiniVac 601 looks interesting.
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Old 01-08-2010, 01:54 PM   #23
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We had a terminal similar to Al's example for my classes in BASIC and FORTRAN, circa early 80s.
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Old 01-08-2010, 02:16 PM   #24
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Oh, yeah. Reminds me of the "Mod-40" teletype machine we used in 1986(!) for communication with headquarters. It was hooked up to a dedicated phone line that provided a blistering 75 baud speed. That phone line cost over $10K per year in phone fees.
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Old 01-08-2010, 10:45 PM   #25
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I still have my beautiful Sol-20 with tons of documentation. Anybody interested?
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Old 02-14-2010, 11:45 AM   #26
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The first one I worked with was an IBM 360-20 in 1969. My first home computer was an Atari 800 with a whole 48K of RAM.
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Old 02-14-2010, 11:58 AM   #27
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I date back to the punch card days. Getting a tape punch teletype was a huge step forward. My first personally owned computer was a 64k Apple But in those days, I knew how to do everything on the computer and operating system. I also remember booting the old machines with levers and they had lights flashing that I could read to tell what it was doing ... or not doing as often as not.
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Old 02-14-2010, 12:12 PM   #28
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First PC I owed was a new Commodore 64 which I assumed would last forever since it was a solid little machine without moving parts; and, I couldn't imagine ever needing more than 64K of memory for anything.

First machine I was paid (minimum wage at the time) to work with: IBM with 8086 chip inside.

First machine I was paid real, post-college, wages to work with: IBM 370 mainframe.

I wrote assembler code for all of these chips; so, I had a fair understanding of how they actually worked. But, I no longer claim to actually understand anything.
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Old 02-14-2010, 12:17 PM   #29
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Let's see:

PET 2001 with chiclet keyboard and built in tape drive. 8K RAM, I think. Had a subscription to GAMES magazine that sent a cassette tape each month with about 6 or 8 programs on it. I remember trying to use the "FastForward" key on the tape deck to cut down the amount of time waiting for a program to load. But if you went too far and missed the beginning...whoops!

Commodore 64 - $595 when it first came out - plus external single-sided 5 1/4" floppy drive that stored 170K per side and an Epson 110 (?) wide format dot matrix printer. I remembered cutting notches in the floppies to use the back side. Played Donkey Kong and ran Busicalc, a forerunner or knockoff of Visicalc.

I also remember fondly writing a little program for school. The assignment was to print 1,000,000 dots. Every one of my classmates dug out the printer manuals, discovered that the "@" sign had the most dots, did some division, and printed out like 50 pages of "@" symbols. I knew my Epson could be programmed via escape codes, so I wrote a program to print 1,000,000 dots programmatically by firing all 9 pins across the entire width of the 17" wide paper. I managed to both (a) fit the entire 1,000,000 dots on a single sheet of 11x17" paper, and (b) print exactly 1,000,000 dots; IIRC correctly the last row wasn't a full row and I had to do a single dot at the very end.

Circa 1990, a Compaq "portable" computer at work that probably weighed 15 pounds and had an orange-on-black monitor. Came with a shoulder bag thing.

Also...IBM PCs, VAX 11/780s, IBM mainframes, HPUX workstations, then just stuff everyone would recognize now...Dell laptops and desktops mostly.

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Old 02-14-2010, 12:38 PM   #30
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We had a Victor 9000 before IBM produced a personal computer. I would go for coffee when I asked the spreadsheet to recalculate.

http://www.commodore.ca/history/peop...or_9000_ad.jpg
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Old 02-14-2010, 01:15 PM   #31
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Atari 1040ST.
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Old 02-14-2010, 02:30 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
And of course, this was my first:

That's not a computer. It is a"human interface" Teletype. with a tape reader no less.

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Old 02-14-2010, 02:46 PM   #33
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An EIA "desktop" TR-48. It did take up the entire top of a desk. This is an analog computer.
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Old 02-14-2010, 03:41 PM   #34
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Think our first was a Magnavox with an 80Mg harddrive and a printer. Late 80's. It was either a computer or a dedicated game machine and it seemed like the computer could play games and do other undefined stuff, so I was gifted with the computer. We added Quicken and that was that - off to the races! Wolfenstein never had a chance. Either that computer or our next, with an upgraded 210 Mg hard drive and DOUBLE the offered RAM at 2Mg was just under $3000 with printer. Profligates. Now my honey has a $600 box and I'm on a $499 Emachine. Strange, but I remember the first 10 years everything was advertised as having blazing performance - is that still the preferred term for a new machine?
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Old 02-14-2010, 04:40 PM   #35
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They say you never forget your first:



I've been developing for its descendants ever since, and I'm looking forward to taking a break on retirement later this month.
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Old 02-14-2010, 08:46 PM   #36
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I guess my first exposure to a computer was programming in "Intercom" language on a Bendix G-15 that my college had gotten as surplus from some Government agency. Anybody else ever seen a Bendix computer, it had about 500 tubes in it.
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Old 02-14-2010, 08:53 PM   #37
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dh2b chimed in...his first computerized device was an Atari game console, with games such as Pong and some psuedo 3D maze game (name?).
His first real computer was a TRS-80 with a cassette tape drive.

My first computer experience at college was with an IBM 360, untouchable by mere undergraduate students . The system had teletypes for student use, punch data card readers, 9 track magentic tapes, and 132 column printouts for each batch run of our very simplistic FORTRAN programs.
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Old 02-14-2010, 09:22 PM   #38
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Just to show how things have changed since 1967:

When my school got their Bendix system there was no open room to put it in. The Science building was next to the Library with a connecting structure between them. Both buildings had restrooms for both men and women. Someone decided that they would clear everything out of the women's restroom in the Science hall and put the computer in there. Nobody complained about that, however, the system gave off more heat than was expected. It was so bad that in mid-winter at zero degrees or lower one would see windows and exterior doors open on the building to keep it cool.
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Old 02-14-2010, 09:37 PM   #39
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The first computer I ever used, the Amstrad CPC:

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Old 02-16-2010, 03:48 PM   #40
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My first in the Air Force 1967, Univac 1050-II minus the model of course. Rats.
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