Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: Your Computer History

I’ve been doing fall cleaning this week, so the days have flown by. I had even forgotten it was Saturday until I saw this week’s SNGF challenge with Randy Seaver:

1) I am a slave to my computer – how about you?  What is your computer history – what have you used, when did you get it, what did you do on it, etc.?

This definitely won’t be one of my longer posts!

My first experience with a computer was during my college days. I don’t remember which class it was, but we had to program those old data cards and run them through the computer that filled the room (and did about 1/100 of what our home PCs do today.)

My memory of that project isn’t a happy one because the computer ate my cards and I had to repeat my steps to get the finished product, whatever it was.

Next, in the 1980s, we had an Apple II and then a IIe at home.  I was quite taken with Seymour Papert’s LOGO program and that is the extent of my computer programming experience.

At the time, I was teaching elementary school and thought it would be fun for my students to learn. I think we had one IIe in the classroom.

In spite of Apple donating zillions of computers to schools, PCs became dominate, both in my classroom and at home.

I accessed USGenWeb back in its infancy as genealogically themed material began to appear on line. However, for many years, my computer was just my glorified typewriter, by then called a word processor.

By the turn of the 21st century, I was more actively accessing the computer’s real capabilities. World Wide Web was the “in” thing and genealogy buffs were sprouting all over the world.

I retired in 2010 and, as my retirement years got closer, I used the computer more and more for genealogy contacts, resources and for my old PAF software program.

Retirement turned me into a genealogy addict and I spend many hours most days of the week working on some aspect of genealogy – my blog, researching the family tree or connecting with others via webinars or email. I spend very little time on social media – maybe 5 minutes a day to check FB to see if anything of interest is happening.

In spite of the hours I put in, I wouldn’t describe myself as a slave to my computer. With the pandemic, there haven’t been any faraway vacation spots to visit or even local places to go.

There is a bright side to that, though. I finally got going on my one-place study of St. Dimitry’s Greek Catholic Church parish in Hajtovka and Udol, Slovakia, home to my paternal grandmother’s family.

That’s about ti for my computer history! Thanks, Randy, for this week’s topic. I’ve been cleaning all day so it is good that my brain didn’t have to think much for this Saturday’s SNGF. 🙂


2 thoughts on “Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: Your Computer History”

  1. Although I tried programming in the early days, my use of the computer today is the same as yours: accessing the Internet and using it as a word processor. I, too, retired in 2010 and have spent most of my time doing genealogy. Good luck with your one-place study.

  2. I wouldn’t characterize myself as slave to my computer either, though I use it a ton. There are evenings I can just keep it off and read a book…

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