Pacific Tides
My name is Thomas Sturm and I'm a programmer, photographer and writer.

Now go outside and look at the sky.

Retrogeeks Like Us

Back in the early 80s - before the Web, the Internet... modems and BBS, really, it was pretty hard to get any kind of information about the just-then available home computers. The only real option were computer magazines, which at the time were of a much rougher quality than anything you'd see nowadays.

I very much remember going to the main train station in Munich, which was a half-hour bike ride followed by a half-hour train ride from my home, to buy imported magazines from the UK. Most of them were thin affairs, with maybe fifteen pages of editorial content and five pages of listings, and maybe the same number of pages full of ads. But, oh, how intensively I studied these pages in their black-and-white glory.

In 1982 I had a ZX81 and spent many evenings after school typing listings for the various games into the little machine, always hoping that the memory pack didn't dislodge itself, sending the last hour of typing to bit heaven. And the games were invariably buggy. It was probably the toughest, meanest school of debugging code, ever.

It's strange how far we've come in relatively little time. I had been reminded of those ancient times when I found the Retrogeek blog yesterday, where the owner is posting some truly ancient gems of the computer literature genre. Many of the articles from back then are now nearly incomprehensible, as well as our present would have been unbelievable 26 short years ago.

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