Re: Back to the Dark Ages.

Subject: Re: Back to the Dark Ages.
From: "Doc" <dlettvin -at- attbi -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 27 Jun 2002 05:17:04 -0400

Yes I do.
Until recently I had (not used) the first computer I owned. It was a Digital
Robin. So-called since it was supposed to be a competitor for Apple and they
didn't want to call it "Worm". Some marketing people have no sense of
The Robin was a VT180. That's a VT100 terminal with an 8080 chip soldered
into somewhere. It had a great keyboard, but the cable for it must have been
an inch thick. There was probably a wire for each damn key.

It had 64K RAM and two !single-sided! floppy drives in a separate box that
sat on top of the monitor.

The OS was CPM. I really liked CPM's symmetrical command lines. It's hard to
believe that the owner of the company that made CPM stood up IBM to go
flying and the reps, not wanting to waste the day went down the road to
watch Bill demo an OS he didn't even own yet.

I think I only ran three programs on it; Wordstar, a text editor, and an
early version of Turbo Pascal.

My son had the Tandy Color Computer. (I still have boxes of Hot CoCo
magazine in the basement) He had to install a toggle switch to get lower
case letters. When I stopped using the Robin, he jury rigged the floppy
drive unit to work with the CoCo to replace the cassette recorder he'd used
to record his programs.

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