Do You Remember?: Life Before Computers


I was laying in bed at 6:30 this morning trying to go to sleep.  My sleep has been completely all over the place now that I am unemployed.  I have basically become a creature of the night.  Anyways, I was thinking about when I got my first computer, or rather my parents got our first computer.  I was also thinking about cell phones and all the other wonderful electronic gadgets that we use today to connect to the world.  Do you remember your first computer or a time before you had one?  Obviously their are people who were born in the 90’s that never went without…you don’t know what you missed out on!

I was 14 before my parents were able to afford a computer.  I remember it was kind of expensive, but that might have been because we were broke.  I was so excited to have the electronic monstrosity in our home.  The only problem was my parents couldn’t afford internet, so we just had a computer for typing and playing cheap games.  We didn’t use it much.  It wasn’t until we moved that we finally got internet.

The internet was still new to the world with it’s cheesy HTML codes that anyone could learn.  I wasn’t allowed to go into chat sites or talk to people on the internet.  I don’t know what I did actually, it was still a few years before Facebook hit the world. I thought the computer was so boring.  It was the time of Ask Jeeves and no one googled or used Wikipedia.  It was just another source to talk to random strangers (which I was forbidden to do) and type up papers that the teachers would sometimes suggest.

My first laptop was an HP monster.  It was heavy and huge and cost 1100 dollars.  I don’t remember the specs, but my moms best friend has the thing now and it still runs!  I just recently bought a new laptop.  It has windows 8 and a touch screen.  I love it.  I only paid 600 for it.  It would kill my first laptop in an instant.  Goes to show how things have changed in the world of computers.

My first chat site that I used and actually made friends on was a 3D chat site called IMVU.  I was 18 or 19 before I even joined.  Before that I was too afraid of my moms warnings about the dangers of internet people to take a risk.  IMVU was a game and I got a cute character to dress up.  I didn’t have to be just a name on a screen, I gave people a new face to see as me.  I met a ton of amazing people and a few I actually still talk to.

Eventually my computer days came to an end.  I don’t talk to random strangers like I used to.  I don’t spend hours going around the internet searching for something fun to do.  I have the sites that I visit on a daily basis, here being one of those and Facebook of course.  I get so bored with it, and it always reminds me of the fun times with great friends when I was so alone and lost in the world.  It had become such a huge part in my life that I almost escaped the real world.  I wish I could go back.

It’s just amazing to think of the days before I had a computer in my house.  How the thought of not having a computer makes me feel so disconnected from the world.  It’s how I keep up with old friends.  It’s where I get my news and some entertainment.  It is where I learn hundreds of new things.  If all of the internet and all computers suddenly shut down, we would all be lost.  Answers would not be at our fingertips anymore and no one would remember how to call a friend to check on them.  Maybe we all need to reconnect to the world.


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