Wednesday, October 5, 2011


Back in the Stone Age when I was in college in the late 1970s, I had an introductory computer class where we did goofy little programming assignments using BASIC and working on terminals connected to the college's big Digital PDP-11.  One of my professor's had just purchased a TRS-80, one of the original desktop computers.  I had no clue then how much computers would become literally a household appliance.  After graduating from college I went to work for a huge aerospace company as a manufacturing engineer.  I wrote production planning on a terminal connected to some mainframe elsewhere in the building.  Our group had a secretary who would type letters for us on an IBM Selectric typewriter.  After four years of flirting with the girls on the soldering line, I was beginning to realize that I wasn't really cutout to work in a giant corporation.  But I was liking too much the engineer salary to make a move.   Fortunately, the company made a decision for me and laid me off.  After a few weeks of job searching, interviewing with dreadful manufacturing facilities and sad looking people, I landed a job with an environmental consulting company.  I walked in for the interview and knew right then and there that that was where I wanted to be.  The people were happy and energetic.  The office was quaintly located in the original Sierra Madre city hall and every desk was equipped with a McIntosh 512.  In short time, I was writing reports and drawing plans, all on that little box.  For the next five years, it was nothing but McIntosh's, graduating from the 512 to the SE and later purchasing a McIntosh LC for home use.  It had a color monitor, which was the coolest thing since the Vega-matic.  Somewhere in the early 1990s the company transitioned over to PCs with Windows and that was it.  Pretty soon it was all Windows all the time.

Rest in peace Steve Jobs.  You made some awesome products and brought Apple back to glory with fantastic new products.  History will view you right up there with Leonardo da Vinci as a genius visionary.

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