Nostalgia: Controltec’s First Computer

In the summer of 1989, I was one of the first people in computing who bought a 486-33 computer. This is a picture of the machine I took a few years ago before I gave it away for recycling. At the time, it was the most advanced machine on the market. It cost over $4,000, and that does not include a monitor. It had a 5 1/4 inch floppy, two 3 1/2 inch floppies, and I added a tape drive and a CD drive. At the time I was working on a neural network engine for automated license plate reading. The training program that ran all night long on the old XT machine executed in 20 to 30 minutes on this monster, and I was in heaven.

Alas, as computers go, this was obsolete within a couple of years and I put it on a shelf. I never had the heart to throw it out and as Controltec grew from one person to more than 60 over the years, I would sometimes pull out the old machine and show it to young associates as the machine that started a company.

It is now long gone, and this old picture of it is the only thing that remains.

Sometimes I miss those days.

2 thoughts on “Nostalgia: Controltec’s First Computer

  1. barbara carlson

    I can empathize with your unwillingness to pitch it. We still have our first 1994 Proforma Mac sent to us in 1997 by my sister in California whose son at 15 built her one from parts. (He’s an IT guru and goes into his cllients’ server rooms to “bond”. He just bought a Tesla. A real early adopter kid.)

    John and I have always been MAC people. It’s what you begin with, eh?

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