Acorn Electron

My first ever computer was the Acorn Electron, a low-cost version of the BBC Micro hardware that was really popular in the 1980s, especially here in the UK. My dad got one for me at the very tail end of 1986, after I insisted on getting a NES for Christmas that year. Determined that I not waste my time playing games, he introduced me to programming and the idea that computers can do what you want them to do, not what other people have decided.

I’ve never been more shaken by a singular notion in my entire life. I was so enamoured with the Electron, despite all of its flaws, that I didn’t get a games console until the SNES about 7 years later. I’ve since enjoyed wasting time playing games on computers, probably none more enjoyable than the SNES in fact, but the Electron shaped my entire view of what’s possible with a computer.

I think it’s about time I collect one and revisit it. My dad still has the original one he got me, but that’s his now as thanks. Hopefully one day I can show my kids how I got started doing what I do, and that little 8-bit machine when I was 6 years old was my computing epoch.

Acorn Electron (and again on Wikipedia).