After I graduated from 8″ superheros, or 2″ Star Wars figures — or the one year I got the entire 12″ set (and was able to play with them pre Christmas, expertly removing them from their wrapped boxes and returning them in such a way unseen by the naked eye) – my love affair began when the Atari 2600 was invited into our home. The time lost to Pong, to Superman, PacMan and Pitfall. Losing on purpose so my very competitive father wouldn’t get so mad. I was hooked to the sites and sounds of the big pixels of the day.
Following soon after was the Apple II+ that seduced my hours after school.. with her textured beige plastic, her sultry green screen and her ample 5 1/4″ floppy drives. Ah the hours I lost in Zork searching for a grue, or playing the parametric view of Zaxxon, flying hellicopters by Broderbund, or trying to herd Lemmings — I wanted to know this machine inside and out. I attempted to program sprites using hexidecimal (which at the time really didn’t show rgb as I now know it — especially on a green screen — but knowing hex certainly helped later in life with my Ensoniq Mirage sampler). I spent more time trawling bbs after purchasing the phone cradle. Now I was like NASA! And NASA, I’m sure, spent time writing routines like:
10 print ‘hi’
20 goto 10