Coding with the Community — Episode 1

I remember dropping my pile of punch cards and having to put them back in order....

just kidding. I'm not that old. My first was a IBM PC-AT compatible computer that I learned assembly programming on.

I was middle school at the time. My father was working for a computer company in Lowell, MA. Not sure where he heard about the Sinclair ZX-81, but he was able to buy one and bring it home. At the time were living in western New York state. We later moved to New England, to be closer to my dad's job.

From the Sinclair ZX-81, I moved up to a Commodore VIC-20, then a Commodore 64, and eventually a Commodore Amiga 500. It wasn't until the end of 1995 that I bought my first IBM compatible, a Dell Pentium 120MHz that I overclocked to 133MHz. The real fun happened when I bought an Abit BH6 motherboard and a Celeron 300A that I immediately overclocked to 450MHz. Ahh, the fun times... :wink:


The first computer I ever played with was my cousin's Commodore 64. I still remember the utter satisfaction from writing my first "Hello World" program. Without that entry into geekdom, I probably would not be the geek I am today.

10 cls
20 print "hello world"
30 end



@adamkempenich, :point_up_2:see first slide on your tutorial .

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You want a C64 Hello World? :slight_smile:

Excellent idea! Did Hubitat give you access to their channel, or will I need to find this stream somewhere else? (I tried clicking the graphic because it looked vaguely like a link, but it...I guess was really a link, but just to a bigger picture. :laughing:)

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No Coleco Adam? :grin:

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I was saving up to buy that computer in kit form when I was a kid. Then I found that for $500 more, I could get a pineapple and build it. But my Dad really spoiled me with an Apple II+ (Mom was pissed that he dropped $2.5 G on a computer at the time).

But I learned on an expanded version of this 8800, that my Dad built from scratch, and then designed his own video card and keyboard interface for it. Later, I learned to use a K-Pro before I had my own computer.

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I’ve actually never used a Coleco or a C64!

But y’all are in for a real treat for the first bit of this broadcast :joy:

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OK, OK, it's obvious that EVERYONE here is a geezer because now 2 of us have asked how to connect to the stream tomorrow and not one of you could remember that long enough to respond to it!!! :rofl: :rofl:

You're all too busy recalling your youth (Apple ][+, later replaced with a //e...which I still have :blush:)

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Hahah too many messages for me to read on my phone during the work day :joy:

I’ll post a YouTube link tomorrow morning around 9-10. :slight_smile:


THANK you! And thanks for offering this!

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My pleasure :slight_smile: I’m looking forward to it!

If you're meaning a ZX81 lookalike in kit form - was that from CompShop in Santa Ana CA ? I was one of the designers of that MicroAce kit and set up and worked at that store.

No it was the ZX81 in kit form, but I remember that. I grew up in Temple City, which if you're from the area you probably know where that is. You must be closer to my Dad's age. I was 10 years old when that ad came out. Small world though. I wonder if my Dad knew you. He had a friend that had one of the early stores. I think it was in Hawthorn, so I know most of what he bought or brought home to test came from him.

I was 22 then I think, but I'm from the UK predominantly - enjoyed a few youth years in Orange County.

The MicroACE was effectively a ZX81 as it had our own designed hardware that avoided the screen display blanking when a program ran. After a licensing swap with Sinclair we then sold ZX81 kits if I remember. I believe we were the only source of such kits. 1K of RAM .. wow !

  • anyway I digress from OT and shall pop by and watch your webinar Adam.. great idea.
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Did you have to get on a waiting list at a Sears Business Center to buy the IBM PC. I bought one of those with a pair of floppy drives. My first computer was from Heathkit. Had a Hexadecimal keypad and no method of storing your program. Second was a Radio Shack Color Computer which stored your programs on cassette tapes and which I eventually had a 5.25" floppy drive for (180k) which was $600 - that $600 was for the floppy only! Went thru a ton of CP/M machines before the PC. I believe we still have DOS on the Windows 10 machines - when you shell out you're in DOS.

I'm sure many of you recall Philippe Kahn and Borland International. Borland brought affordable computer languages to the masses. Instead of Microsoft $500 languages Borland had them for $79 or less. Those were exciting and fun days.

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I’m getting a syntax error :grimacing:

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I was ~10 years old at the time so as far as I was concerned it appeared out of the ether :slightly_smiling_face:. Got home one day and it was there sitting on a brand new desk. I learned almost everything I know about DOS trying to get games to work on it as the years rolled by. Good ole config.sys and autoexec.bat editing.

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