Thursday, August 7, 2008

Some of my earliest memories have been about video games, and computers. I guess it is no surprise that I am in the I.T. field now. Lets hit the rewind button, shall we?

"Sherman, set the wayback machine for 1977"

I would spend a few weeks each summer at my grandparents house. I would cut the grass, and they would give me $10 for doing it. My friends and I would then run off to Putt-Putt and the arcade, and play for hours. Then, one day, my parents brought this home:
Does that picture bring back memories? For a 7 year old kid, it was like the most magic thing I had ever seen. "You mean, all I have to do it plug in a cartridge and I can play a video game?"
I think I played Space Invaders for three or four hours straight after that.

Now, lets move the wayback machine a few years ahead to 1982. My dad brought home a VIC-20 from Commodore, but it wasn't the 64. So that night we packed it up and he brought this home:

Ahhh... The Commodore-64. 64 being the amount of memory. Although after the system loaded (it used memory) you were left with 38k free. (That is 38,000 bytes - The average computer memory now is 1 gig of memory, or 1 billion bytes.)

This system is where wasted youth went. The foundation of the operating system was BASIC (Beginners All Symbolic Instruction Code), so my time was spent writing programs. I remember that my father set this thing up in the pantry area where the kitchen table was in our house. The desk he had it on was an old metal desk, which he still uses today. Many an hour I stayed up at night writing and re-writing code, learning about pixels, and color codes, peeks and pokes.

I remember my dad would often say to me "Are you in there playing Donkey Kong?" so this last picture is for him.......


1 comment:

Frank said...

Donkey Kong turned out to be a pretty good learning tool, huh?