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My computer history is as follows:
Middle School - Commodore PET and Apple IIe (school computers)
I learned Commodore and AppleSoft BASIC on these computersHigh School - Sinclair ZX81 kit and later a Timex/Sinclair 2068
I learned ZX BASIC and Z80 assembler on these machines. I also designed and made many hardware interfaces for the 2068. I wrote a BBS program that was featured in an old Byte Magazine review. The BBS was called "The Looney Bin!" and the BBS used no mechanical storage (initially) and used one of my RAM expansions to save messages. It was the first (and I think only) BBS software for that platform.I later found an Atari 600XL for sale in the classified ads and bought it, and got hooked on Atari computers. My only grip I ever had (and still do) is their use of the 6502 CPU instead of my favorite, the Zilog Z80. I never did get into 6502 Assembler as it was frustrating trying to do things with it that was simple on a Z80.
The 600XL died from a faulty CPU and I later bought an 800XL with 1050 drive (with US Doubler) and an Atari modem. I ran my BBS off of it for a while with some software I customized (sorry, I don't remember the name or original author).
I later bought a 520ST, wrote a BBS program in GFA Basic (do you sense a pattern?) and when it died (due to my intense tinkering) I bought a 1040STFM. I used that for many many years, I wrote a terminal program for it called "Pro Terminal/Power Terminal" (I think someone copied the name, so I changed it) that did 100% ATASCII emulation, as well as VT100. I was proud of it. I later wrote a program that exploited the super/sub-script fonts of the Star NX1000 printer to print four pages of data on one page. It was featured in the UK's "STFormat" magazine, and called "TinyPrint".
My last Atari was a Falcon030 with 4 megs of RAM. I lost my Falcon when I was moving it to a PC case and purchased a power cable from Radio Shack that was wired backwards. It put 12 volts on the 5 volt bus, and I said an angering goodbye to my beloved Falcon030. Radio Shack did pay for my Falcon030, but by then Atari was no more and I used the money to buy my first PC.
My Jaguar is the only thing Atari that I have kept over the years. Fortunately, the nostalgic bug has bitten me, and I'm a proud owner of a 65XE and TT.