This is a three part series about my history with the personal computer.
The Pre-Teen Years
I have had a computer in the home for as long as I can really remember. I'm not talking about Windows 3.1, either. I'm talking about DOS based computers. From my earliest memory, we had what I'm assuming was an IBM clone that my Dad built. I remember two things: Classic Concentration and Mixed Up Mother Goose. These games have fond memories in my heart. In fact, I remember when my dad bought Mixed Up Mother Goose. My sister and I had been to some sort of camp for the weekend. When my parents picked us up, they had it in the car. What was this camp? No idea, but I vividly remember getting into the car and seeing the box for that game. I was probably around 5. This would have made the year 1989. What were the specs of these machines? No clue, but I know that my love for technology started when I was young.
Sometime in 1994, I remember being up at my dad's office and with my dad and a friend of his (Brian Cornett). They where installing a beta of Windows 95. It seemed to take forever, but they eventually got it. Where did they get it from? No idea, but it was radically different than Windows 3.1. They seemed really excited to get to use it. It's funny how I am the same way when a new version of iOS is released.
It was probably around this time that we signed up for America Online (we had previously used Prodigy). We were an AOL customer back when it wasn't unlimited. It was $2.97 per hour (from what I remember). There was one month that I ran it up to $100 (my dad wasn't happy). Thankfully, AOL went unlimited a few years later. That caused its own set of problems, though. I remember sitting through this, but getting kicked off on the last step. Can you imagine the kids of today having to "sign on" to the Internet?
The final memory from my pre-teen years is playing Quake over the local LAN. We had two computers connected up (side by side) and my dad and I would play deathmatch against each other.