One Era Ends, A New One Begins

Developer of early personal computer dies in Ga.

I can’t remember if I saw that cover at the time. I must have, because I was reading magazines like that at the library back then.

If I saw it, I probably scoffed because it didn’t look like it could do anything. Also, I couldn’t build electronics.

Plus, I had been scarred by my first “computer.”

I’ve looked for it on the Net but haven’t able to find it. It was this weird thing with plastic and metal rods you assembled, then manually(!) pushed these slots on the left side back and forth. These rods would have hollow plastic pegs on them (they looked like cut-down plastic straws!). On the right side was a 4-digit(!) rotating display that would present the “answer” to the “calculation.”

It was disappointing as hell. I’d expected something with all the answers like the computers I’d seen in TV shows.

That was, of course, years before 1975! But the bitter memory lingered.

In less than two days, a new era will begin.

Rest in peace, Ed Roberts. You did good while you were here.

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