Let's Make Robots!

1990, new technology (LOL)

Well, do you remember what year you got your first computer and what the specs are?

I know, it was a ATARI130XE with 1.79MHz and 128kB RAM. running with a Datasette/tape cassette player to save and load programs. The OS was the Atari OS. You can find the details here: Atari 130XE

But this is not what I want to tell you. I just browsed Google Books and found this: Popular Science 10/1990

Reading that reminded me how fast time is running.

Here is a screenshot of page 41 (in case you don't want to go there (click the image to enlarge).

See the price for that bricks ;-) imagine today. Take that money and buy components...what you could get...


Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

My first computer was a Dell laptop running Windows XP I got as a hand-me-down from my grandpa about 4 years ago... I'm one of the younger people here ;)

I believe it was about 1980-81.  It plugged into a color TV and booted to BASIC.  I still have the computer, tape drive, and I think some game cartridges - I even had a printer but I don't know what became of it.  I haven't fired it up in years, but the manuals are on my bookshelf.  In addition to a friendly no-fail intro to BASIC programming, they include the schematics and a reference for 6502 Assembler mnemonics.

I used to write my own BASIC programs.  I was already into chatbots and AI by then.  The computer magazines of the day would publish BASIC programs line-by-line.  My younger brother would painstakingly type them in.  One that I remember him entering was a pretty decent Centipede knock-off.

I have a Commodore 64, I think it's still working, acoompanied by a Commodore Datasette.
Before that I had an Atari 2600. This one I don't have anymore. I had to give it away to get the Commodore 64.


My first computer was an Amstrad/Schneider CPC664 in 1986. It comes with a Z80 CPU running @ 4MHz, 64kB RAM, a 3'' floppy disk drive (really great) and a green screen. I remember that I wrote my thesis on it using CP/M and Wordstar, but most time we play Bomb Jack :).

I had a TRS-80 MC-10.  It was about the size of a Timex-Sinclair, but it had a white casing and actual pushbutton keyboard.  You could get a cord that let you save its MS Basic Programs on a cassette player, and it had a whopping 4K of RAM which you could expand to 20K by inserting a bootie-shaped brick into the back.  It could generate 8 colors and 255 tones (silence was considered the 256th tone) and it could make graphics with "draw" style commands or by printing blocks that were just variations on the character spaces divided into four quadrants.  They made a printer for it that printed out 4-inch thremal proofs (so keep it away from lightbulbs) and there were about 6 programs you could buy on 3 different cassettes.  One of them was a pinball game that was actually done in machine language so it had "high resolution" graphics (which looked just a touch better than the Atari 2600.)

Ah, memories...

Wow-lots of pics of it on the interwebs!

Funny I was just today trying to remember the year I got my vic20. haha you say. I think it was '82 or '83. Tapedrives sucked but I couldn't afford a disk drive until a couple years later when I'd upgraded to the C64 and had started working. I was 16.

I had an Atari 600XL. Because the games were so expensive I wrote my own games. We had a cassette player to store the games on. A floppy drive in those days was about $400. I was 13 and also learning to program on Apple II and IBM clones.