|SVG version of the screenshot found at Image:Emacs Tetris (detail).png of the tetromino game in Emacs. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
My dad was an idea guy. He was never particularly technically minded so his ideas weren't like an inventor. Working on cars or building things or even handyman work around the house were not something he ever did. I'd say he was technically challenged. But he liked innovations, gimmicks, and any novel idea that would capture his imagination. And he was a pretty imaginative guy.
Following my years of traveling on the road with a theater company during most of the 1980's, I decided to settle with my family in what I considered to be my home town. After a period of living at home with my parents while we got established into the routine of life in one place, my family and I moved to an apartment that was not far from my parents house. We were there frequently. Especially when I discovered my father's computer.
I don't recall what kind of computer it was, but it was a pre-windows workhorse that required knowledge of coded computer language. I didn't get it at all. What I did learn how to do was play Tetris and I played every chance I got. This was not like the old Pong game we used to hook up to our television set years before. The new computer games were far more intricate and colorful. The other games installed on my dad's computer were interesting, but Tetris was the one that hooked me.
Once he had obtained the computer second-hand through a classified ad, he began studying the technology with a vengeance. He took a computer class in the evenings after work. He bought computer books and studied them voraciously. I looked at his class workbook and nothing made sense to me. Beyond the games I couldn't do a darn thing on the computer. The languages left me baffled. I could open the games with the prompts my father provided me. Everything else was beyond my grasp. Besides I was quite content watching the geometrical pieces of Tetris fall into place over and over again.
Then in 1990 I got a new job. And wouldn't you know it--computers were a big part of what I was hired to do....
(...to be continued. I'm keeping these posts relatively short because of my current ongoing computer problems. Sometimes my computer is working like a wiz, then others it all slows down or even freezes. Hopefully in a few days I'll have solved the problem. Either that or I'll just go nuts.)
Did you ever play Tetris? Did you use computers prior to Windows? How many computer languages do you "speak"?