My story mirrors yours. I, too, learned on the
Aquarius, and I loved
it. I then moved on to the Apple ][+. I have few regrets in my life,
but of the more nerdy ones, I regret ever selling my Aquarius to finance
the purchase of my Apple ][+. I had all the peripherals for it
(including the thermal printer and datasette, and of course the expansion
module with controllers and a 4K RAM carthridge).
I didn't have quite as much for it, probably. I had the mini-expander
with controls, and four cassettes, which I think were D&D Treasures of
Tarmin, Utopia, Night Stalker, and Biorhythms. I got Chess later as a
gift. I didn't have the "official" data recorder, but I got a regular
tape recorder to work once in a while for storage. I remember writing
programs for it. I remember also typing in that what-seemed-so-long
"Digital Clock" program from the manual. I left out all the REM
statements because they were "optional," I thought from my programming
experience and what the manual said. I didn't realize that all the
branching statements went to those REM's. Eventually, I got it to
work, and I thought it was really neat. I was easily entertained at
age seven. When my parents' friends came over, their two kids and I
had Utopia tournaments. Often, they got very mean, and we'd end up
fighting because "you broke the agreement about not sinking my fishing
boat," and one of us would retaliate by putting rebels on the other's
island with all our money until the game got pointless because no one
had anything left.
I may still have the price list around somewhere - I know I had it a
long time after buying anything would have been an option, but I don't
know if it got thrown out or not. I bugged my parents about getting me
a printer for it, but they never did, and I didn't have any money of
my own (I was only between about six and eight).
In my original list of computers, I forgot my Atari 2600, possibly
because I didn't consider it a computer, but rather a video game
machine. (Wasn't there a keyboard setup of some sort that you could
get for it? I could be wrong about that.) I still have that at home,
too. I don't remember all the games I had for it. I remember being
really mad that the "Indy 500" "driving controls" wouldn't work as
paddles with Warlords, and I never got the real paddle controls. I
think we took Warlords back to the store. (I could, again, be mistaken
about all these titles...)
Ahhhh, I miss those days.
I hear ya!
Andy Brobston brobstona(a)wartburg.edu
My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Wartburg College
as a whole.