Over at Page 3.14, there’s a post where us old farts reminisce about computing when we were young ’uns. I’m quoted as saying
"My first computer was a ZX81 (Timex/Sinclair here in the US). Had 1k of memory. Taught myself assembly.
In high school and college, virtually everything was hand written. Didn’t even use a calculator until college (wasn’t allowed in high school – I remember log tables!)"
Below the fold, I give some more reminiscences. Gentle reader, feel free to add your memories as comments.
These are somewhat free-form and disjointed …
My first computer was a ZX81 (Timex/Sinclair here in the US). Had 1k of memory. Taught myself assembly.
My second computer was a Commodore 64 with a tape drive for storage. I eventually bought a floppy drive. Made me the envy of my friends. Played Ultima. A lot.
I first learned to program in 1980 on an Apple ][ in Comal (an obscure European
language). Then learned Assembly, Forth, Basic, Pascal, Fortran and C.
Gave up at that point.
Generated my honors thesis (’89) using Waterloo Script on a Vax/VMS. No WYSIWYG there folks. Killed god knows how many reams of paper just trying to get tables to line up. Often had to tweak the Applescript by hand. Figures were hand drawn.
Remember using chat relays (CERN) in ’87 on the mainframe.
Used Wordstar at home with a slow dot matrix printer. Had to use KERMIT to get files from the mainframe to a floppy to home.
First PC in our department appeared my first year of grad school. Statistics still required use of the mainframe, in fact all my analyses before graduation in ’93 were on the mainframe (using SAS).
Remember installing the first TCPIP stack on the aforementioned departmental PC. Tech support people were clueless.
One word … Dongles.