From: William Maddox <>
Date: Mon, 28 Feb 2005 09:27:26 +0000

> It could be interesting to know the age"spread" of thist list contributors,
> and how long we've had the computer virus under our skin.

I am 43, born in 1961.

I got a small amount of exposure to coding in BASIC and FORTRAN in a
summer "computer camp" for high school students, but my serious hands-on
experience with computing really got underway when I built an IMSAI 8080
from a kit in 1977. I attended college at Carnegie-Mellon University,
which was a hard-core DEC shopw during the time I was there, with
PDP-10s, DECSYSTEM-20s, PDP-11s, and VAXen everywhere. I also got to
play with the Altos and the PERQs, the latter sometimes more than I
cared to. I've had a longstanding interest in computer history, and
obtained my first classic machine, a PDP-8, while I was still living in
Pittsburgh. I put it in storage shortly thereafter, however, and moved
to California for graduate studies. I ended up staying and working in
the Silicon Valley, and for almost 20 years my historical interests
remained purely academic. VCF 6.0 changed that, and reawakened my
interest with the realization that not only were old computers more fun
back then, but they still are today! I started collecting old machines
again a little over a year ago, and haven't looked back.

Strangely, but like a few others here, my nostalgia is reserved
primarily for machines *earlier* than the ones I used. Switches and
blinkenlights, core memory, hardwired control, no LSI -- that kind of
thing. I think that I balk at thinking of anything I remember well as
being truly *old*. ;)

Received on Mon Feb 28 2005 - 09:29:56 GMT

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