Friday, February 16, 2007

Hello Old Friend

Like your first date you never forget your first computer, if you're a nerd like me.

I came across pictures of my first home computer an Amstrad PCW8256. It had the CPU and single disk drive in the monitor--who says Apple is cutting edge?--and came with software (CP/M Plus [an early version of the disk operating system: MS-DOS or DR-DOS, word processing, and programming) and a dot matrix printer.

The word processing program had a user interface similar to Wang's Wordstar--Look! Ma! no mouse. The spell verifier program was fun to run. I'd load the document, load the spelling program, and then on request, pop out the spelling program and load the dictionary disk.

Amstrad is one of those computers that should have done better, but never seemed to catch fire in the US market. I'll always remember it as the computer that got me started as a true geek.


Blogger Mitch Kief said...

A spelling checker! I am so green with envy. All I had on my Timex-Sinclair was an editor. I had to store programs on a cassette tape recorder.

10:22 AM  
Blogger Steve said...

This was 1986. You win geek points for being more cutting edge with a Timex-Sinclair.

2:51 PM  
Blogger Mitch Kief said...

I rented a TI keyboard terminal from school in the earlier 80s. It had a modem that was a holder for a phone handset. No tube display, output was printd on thermo fax paper. This was so I could dial into the main computer on campus. Felt like I was living in a science fiction dream. Having a Wifi broadband connection to the World Wide Web somehow isn't as exciting as that old TI terminal.

11:51 AM  

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