Oct 7, 2011

Remembering Steve Jobs and My Apple IIe

tl;dr: R.I.P. Steve Jobs. You rocked the computer party.

Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work."—Steve Jobs

I got lucky as a kid. I bought an Apple IIe at a neighborhood garage sale in 1992 for $75. I was 10 and I used money I'd saved from mowing lawns. In '92 the GUI Macintosh was rising to popularity as the Apple IIe was fading, but that made them cheap. I didn't care what model it was, I was just thrilled to own my first computer.

I'd used the school's computers before, enthusiastically, but not to create real programs. One fateful day a typing accident occurred on the Apple IIe and an Integer BASIC prompt came up. I sought assistance in the help files and then wrote my first program:

20 GOTO 10

The 'Hello World' of its day, I suppose. Being able to influence what the computer did fascinated me. I wrote BASIC programs from then on, including some with snazzy graphics. The experience steered me toward a major in Computer Science and a lifelong interest in computers.

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