One of my colleagues, just wrote a fun article about the gadget that first captured his interest when he was a kid: the Commodore 64. I know exactly what he means. For me, it was the Atari 2600. We’d had gaming consoles before, but this was the first one you could program. I remember watching my dad sit on the floor in the living room reading a thin, badly structured book on how to program and him trying to explain to me what he was doing.

I’m not sure exactly how he explained it to me, but this is what I got: When you are simply using a computer, you are telling it what to do; whereas, when you are programming a computer, you are teaching it something new. I was hooked. Before long, I’d written my first computer program (A really bad game where you tried to guess the coordinates of a little blob on the screen . . . I didn’t say I was brilliant, just nerdy.) Is it any wonder that I was a computer science major or that I work for a technology company?

What was the first computer that caused you to geek out?