Introduce yourself thread

Welcome! And welcome to other recent joiners too.

(If anyone has their interest piqued by one of the topics mentioned here, or wants to expand on something they mentioned themselves, I encourage them to start a thread for it.)

Hello, I’m David. I started using computers long enough ago that all of my early (and not-so-early) computers are considered retro now, though I see many people here got started many years before I did. I started with Acorn machines (Electron, then A3000 and A7000+) before getting into Linux on PCs.

I’m mostly active in the stardot forums, though I have started following The Unix Heritage Society mailing list for insights into Unix history. I also drift in and out of the Plan 9 and Inferno communities on the 9fans mailing list and Inferno OS Google Group while I try to port Inferno to different bits of hardware.

Most recently, I started using microcontrollers to experiment with simple, low resource, computing systems. This seems to bring things full circle given that many early computer systems were similarly constrained.

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Footnotes to introduction due to new user linking limitations: :wink:

I came into this group thinking it was about 1980’s computer like the Apple //e and Commodore 64. Boy, did I get a surprise! I found a lot of interesting things about old mainframes and other computers from way back. I have a habit of posting things I’ve found elsewhere only to find they had been already posted here.

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Hi folks! My is name Perry and I’ve been into computers since discovering my high school computer lab. It was three walls of TRS-80 Model 1’s connected to a Model 3, used for file transfers and printing. I started out playing Star Trek but then someone told me I could cheat by hitting the break key and then GOTO a particular line number. This is when my fascination with computers really started. I was able to convince my parents to buy me an Atari 400 with 410 tape drive and got to work typing in programs from magazines and attempting to write games. I also taught myself 6502 assembly when I learned how much faster my program’s would run. I didn’t get very far with assembly at that time, but it did become useful later while studying to become an EE. I’m pretty proficient with it these days and have written a few games for various Atari computers and consoles. Now I find myself trying to recapture my childhood by collecting, repairing and programming old computers. I recently discovered a Monroe OC8820 in my father-in-laws crawl space. It’s going to be my next project once I have time to drag it home and check it out. One of these days I would love to acquire an Altair, but that will probably have to wait until I hit retirement and have the time to play.

Regards,
Perry

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Hi Perry, welcome!

Regarding the Monroe OC8820, we had once a thread on this:

and (the thread mentioned at the very start of the previous one):

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Thanks for the links! I haven’t tested the machine yet, but assuming I can get it operational, I think the big challenge will be finding the original software for it. I did find some td0 files for the CP/M disks released for this machine. I’m thinking I will try using a Gotek with FlashFloppy to load the CP/M OS and then I should be able to create some real floppy’s and use it as a CP/M machine.

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I guess, td0 files are from this vcfed.org thread, which is sort of a continuationn of the thread here? (There’s some info on drive geometry.)

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Hi Perry, welcome!

I have worked a lot on my repair project for my OC8820 licensed clone, let me know if I can help you with anything else. I’m still searching for more documentation, software, schematics, etc.
I have been inactive in the group due to I have been a father recently and the baby (she) has revolutionized my life. Bit a bit I’m retaking my projects, so I hope to solve the Monroe problems before the end of the year.

I will try to update my post with my last findings, also I have been able to dump the bios, if you need to burn a new EPROM with it you can find the image here Monroe MCA200 BIOS dump : ale_perez : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive

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Thank you. Your posts have been very helpful in my research of this machine. And congratulations on fatherhood. It’s a lot of fun watching them grow. Mine is 17 now and looking at colleges. I’ll soon have plenty of time for my hobbies but maybe not as much money. :wink: I saw a full set of manuals sold on ebay recently and I’m kicking myself for missing out on them. Hopefully more will pop up someday.

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Thanks! the fatherhood is amazing (and stressful) About the manuals, with a bit of luck, the new owner scans the manuals and keeps them safe on the internet.

Hi all:
New user here on the board. I am an avid electronics project builder, coder, hacker vintage computer collector and maker. I have been messing with computers since about 1982 when I saw my first TRS-80 Model 1 at the mall. Taught myself how to program BASIC on the high schools only computer at the time, a Commodore CBM. After that came PASCAL and assembly. First personal computer was a Timex Sinclair 1000 which was soon replaced by a VIC-20 then a C-64. I’d like to say these versions in my collection are my originals, but they are not. I kept selling machines in order to move on to the next.

Looking forward to sharing experiences and contributing.
Cheers,
mark

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Welcome, Mark! And indeed Perry, and David, and any other recent joiners who haven’t (yet!) posted an introduction.

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Forth programmer by day, PDP-10 hacker by night. I like to resurrect obscure software.

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As in, Forth programming is your day job? That’s awesome. :slight_smile:

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Yes, I lucked into it last fall. It is awesome and a lot of fun!

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Hi. Some known faces here. I’m gonna guess this forum was created in response to the demise of Google+. Am I right, @EdS?

My name is Juan Carlos Castro. I was born in 1965, and my first contact with computers was in college, at the age of 17. Simultaneously, a TRS-80 Model I clone at home, and an S-100 CP/M computer and a B6900 mainframe at college. At 19, I got my first job at a company that built a TRS-80 Color Computer clone. Much ROM BASIC hacking with the help of the Unravelled book series. Got the retrocomputing bug in 2009, built a collection with many weird items, started hosting a retrocomputing podcast with 4 other friends. @jecel featured prominently on out site. (Hi!)

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Welcome, Juan!

Yes, indeed, indeed it was. And it was a handy refuge, and a good way to get a running start. I think now the forum has a character of its own, and a membership which is not too strongly related to ex-membership of Google+ - which is all good, and a natural consequence of time passing.

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Hi everyone! I’m Tim Lovern. I started on PDP-11s in the late 70’s and then moved on to the VAX platform. I did RSTS/E development, then VMS. I have a strong VMS background. I still do some consulting on OpenVMS today.

I have a strong interest in older 8 and 16 bit micros - like the Altair or the IMSAI, as well as the old Digital Equipment Corp (DEC) machines… glad to have stumbled into this site.

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Hi,

I’m zedstarr (my first Elite commander’s name and it’s stuck; it’s me pretty much everywhere on the internet),

Hardware engineer at heart, but I know enough software to get me in trouble.

When I was 11 or 12 my grandfather taught me to solder and we worked our way through a Tandy/Radio Shack “65-in-1 hobby electronics” kit thing (wooden frame, cardboard base with spring terminals and wires) making all sorts of amazing things and I’ve never looked back… built my own audio mixer, guitar pedals, pre-amps and all sorts of test gear. Etching PCBs in my teenage bedroom and getting into big trouble for ferric chloride stains on everything.

Although I was the right age to be a BBC/Spectrum kid my parents thought “computers are a waste of money”(!!!) so I made do with getting a fix via friends’ machines or using machines at school/college/Uni. Generally BBC/Nascom basic machines and then later the dreaded IBM PC.

That is until I started work and bought myself my first “proper” computer - a Psion Series 3 :smile: This was the start of a long-time obsession with Psion/Symbian and I owned pretty much everything Psion made post Series 3.

Over the years I’ve installed Linux on just about everything I possibly could - x86 desktops/laptops, Sun SPARC, HP-UX machines & even an old iPod and the Psion Series 5 too.

Lost count of the things I’ve blown up - started early again around the age of 10/11 with my dad’s 12V test screwdriver (bulb-in-clear-handle type) from the car toolkit that I found didn’t like mains voltage :exploding_head:

Worked in Telecoms for ever, specialising in frequency standards (atomic clocks/GNSS) and other phase/time synchronisation technologies & systems. Hacked (un-paid pen-tester? :wink: ) Unix, VAX-VMS corporate systems at work and even the PBX back in the 1990s.

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