Fred Cisin cisin at xenosoft.com
Tue Nov 16 17:41:52 CST 2021

On Tue, 16 Nov 2021, Murray McCullough via cctalk wrote:
> Did the 4004 chip start our interest in microcomputing?

For ME, hearing about the 4004 was the first solid assurance that tabletop
computers would become available.  I heard some  mentions of it from cow-
orkers at Goddard Space Flight Center, and then somebody referred me to 
the Electronic News article. 
Very shortly after that, I got out of aerospace, which was going through 
some turmoil, but promised that I would get back into computers as soon as 
they got into MY price range.  THAT ended up being the Z80 based TRS80 for 

A LOT of people HERE were in it LONG before I was.

> It is 50 today. Classic computing begins earlier but for the masses, if 
> they could be called that in the early seventies, this was it.

Yes, there were prior machines, but the 4004 is ARGUABLY the first 
successful commercial mass-produced one.
There were others, from TI, Fairchild, Four-Phase?, etc.
As usual, the label "FIRST" is questionable due to whether we count 
announcement, prototypes, demos, shipping, etc.

> I hesitate in calling it the first microprocessor as pc'ers will object.

It is good to hesitate!
Virtually EVERY "FIRST" has some prior art.
If, by "pc'ers", you mean Politically Correct, then it is arguably 
If, however, by "pc'ers", you mean the IBM 5150, then NO!  The IBM 5150 
was a late entry in order to "take over" and "dominate" an already 
"bustling" market.
Some call the 5150, the start of the END of classic computing, or at least 
of the hobby dominated field.

> Happy computing all.
> Murray  🙂

Grumpy Ol' Fred     		cisin at xenosoft.com

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