Early Computing Memories

I've been quite busy with other things, but today I decided to try and share my earliest memories with computing.

A few days ago I stumbled upon a post by Robb Knight sharing his origin story with Computing, I actually didn’t read that post until I saw Kev’s post on his computing history.

I was born at the start of a new millenium, living in a modest house. Honestly, I don’t recall using computers very often, until I was 11 or so years old.

However, I encountered them a few times before actually owning one at my house, I don’t have memories of model numbers and brands, but I do recall many moments, and I’ll decided to just write them here as they come to mind.

My extended family lives quite far from each other, but once or twice a year, everyone reunites and it was always fun. I recall my aunt and uncle had a computer in their house. Back then I played online flash games with my cousins all the time, I can imagine some vague pictures of what they were, I recall some farming game, some Bomberman clones, an Army vs Army kind of game. All of them played from the browser. It was honestly kind of great.

It was my cousin where I also had my first interaction with a PSP, now that I recall, but that’s a story for another day.

I remember the computer my friend had where he was emulating the Nintendo 64, I talked in detail about it on a previous about my first contact with emulation.

Now, the first actual time I used a computer in my own house, if I recall correctly, was with a laptop that my father used for his studies, emails and such. It was a Toshiba, it had a dark blue colored body, and I remember using it to play a few videogames on it. Back in the day, there were some cereal boxes of brands like Zucaritas and Froot Loops, that came bundled with CD-Roms with random games I could play.

I remember getting a CD-Rom with some Motorbike Racing Simulator which was kind of neat, the graphics were pretty cool but I remember being bad at it. Another game I tried on it was a Zoo Park Simulator that I played for quite a while, but I never managed to make it super successful.

Honestly, I still wasn’t very interested in computers yet, and while I knew the internet due to playing games online, at home we did not have our own modem until maybe 2012. Therefore, I never cared much about using my dad’s laptop for more than those simple games.

I have a mild memory of having a computing class in primary school, I don’t think I ever used any useful programs. The background wallpaper was from the Cheetos mascot at the time, and I also remember using some sort of kid friendly program to do simple drawings and such.

When we finally got a desktop computer, I was quite happy about it, it was some old computer with 512MB of Ram and Windows XP—the same one featured in my emulation post. I remember I reinstalled the CD-Roms of the cereal box games, which were somehow still around after moving locations a couple times.

That computer is where my interest in technology started to grow a little bit more. I remember installing quite a few programs, from Project 64 or even completely legally acquired copies of Adobe Photoshop.

I remember messing around with Windows Movie Maker, and also finding a neat tool to do stick fight animations, known as Pivot Animator. Another game I remember installing on it was Plants vs Zombies, a fantastic game that was incredibly fun!

I even had some interest in Game Maker, but I don’t think I progressed much more using it.

Most of the time was spent with programs such as Windows Live Messenger, where I talked with friends who were online, and also browsing for origami tutorials, Pivot animator tutorials and similar things.

At one point I remember installing Unity and following some tutorial on making an FPS game, but I don’t even remember copying and pasting code, just putting modifying simple 3D assets and using a built-in camera controller.

I think this is long enough for this random series of thoughts and memories. I hope you enjoyed them, and share yours as well!

This is day 50 of #100DaysToOffload, and post 18 for #WeblogPoMo2024.


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