What Was Your First Computer?

Last Thursday when I was in New York I swung by Steve Rubel’s office and hung out with him for an hour.  We caught up on a bunch of stuff but managed to squeeze in a short riff about our first computers (yes – we were talking about how old we were – which is not that old, but it feels like it now that we have Facebook accounts.)


That’s me – as a 40 year old – with my first computer – an Apple ][. The actual one – with some software that I wrote running on it (yes – those are five menu options, numbered “1. “ to “5. “)  It cost about $3,000 total, which included two floppy drives, an Integer Card, memory (it had 64k), Pascal, Visicalc, and a couple of games.)  I eventually got a copy of Beer Run to go with Choplifter.

My second computer was an original IBM PC.


I can’t remember how much memory it has (not much) but it came with two floppy disks.  Again, $3,000 or so.  One day I got a Tandon 10MB hard disk (ST506 compatible – anyone remember that?) and thought for about 24 hours that my life was complete.

My first laptop (er – portable) was a Compaq. 

Compaq1 Compaq2

I also had a Mac 128k and a Lisa.  Reflecting on the whole thing is a little scary to me.  Especially since each of them seemed to cost about $3,000 (except the Lisa which was closer to $10,000.)