What sparked your interest in technology?

Kottke started tinkering with primitive computers when he was still a kid.
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Question: When did technology spark your interest?


Jason Kottke: My parents got divorced when I was about 10.  And I lived with my mom, but I would spend the weekends and like one day a week with my dad . . . every other weekend and one day a week with my dad.  And he had a computer.  He had an 80-80, which is like the very early sort of IBM-compatible PC.  It was manufactured by a company named Columbia, which is, you know, probably went out of business two seconds after we bought the computer.  And I think right around that time or maybe before that we had a TI-99, which was a Texas Instruments thing you could buy at Radio Shack.  And you know we had computers in school and stuff too.  But that was really like I could play around with, you know, programming things in Basic on the computer and programming . . .  They had Basic on the TI-99 as well, and played some games and things like that.  And that’s really where the interest, you know, kind of began.

It was just sort of this endless world, I guess.  You could . . . you could just explore as much as you wanted.  You could . . . you could write a program, you know, within the confines of what the computer was capable of.  You could write a program to do anything, and you just had to figure out how to do it.  And that was, you know, the fun part for me.  I liked figuring out how to do things.


Recorded on: 10/9/07