2/16/2013

Ode to the internet past

It's amazing to think that I have been online since 1995. The internet is a totally different world now that it was back then. The glimmer of education and understanding was just beginning to catch on. Dial-up was the word of the day. You could pick up an installation disk at any grocery store. Cable modems and T-1 connections came later.

As a late teenager, my family had a VIC-20 and a Commodore 64 computer. My first computer was a used 386 that was inherited from my mother. This was a big bulky machine that covered an entire desk. I had zero interest in the computer, looked at it as one more thing that took up space and really didn't want it.

Then my husband picked up a floppy disk from the store and showed me how to work a 14.4 K-baud modem. It's hum and beeping soon became music to my ears. My Geocities account was opened a few months later. We had basic editing software but the page was was pretty much written by hand. (This was before the days of mytechcoupons.com where you couldn't go out and just buy webpage design software.)

In fact, the first web design program that I remember came with Netscape and then Front Page. The Netscape Navigator came bundled with software from another company. Although simple, the program made it a breeze to create a website.

Buying a computer today is much more challenging. Coupon sites like www.mytechcoupons.com can help you get a good price. You can shop through stores like Best Buy and compare specs on products like HP, Sony, Logitech and others.

This is another change from the earlier days of the internet. There really wasn't much in the way of online stores in 1996. Purchasing electronics meant hitting the local retail store and hoping that the sales representative had more knowledge that you did. It wasn't always the best bet but it was what we had to work with.

I sometimes miss the earlier, simpler times of the internet. One thing that I don't miss is the 14.4 K-baud modem. It just wouldn't work with my smart phone.

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