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What machines did you use in High School?

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Reply 20 of 63, by ahendricks18

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I'm still in HS. We use very locked down windows 7 dell i5's. No flash games, no running executable files, no opening cmd, etc. And half the damn internet is blocked with lame ass "lightspeed systems". Even some educational computer websites are blocked. Stupid redneck school 😒

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Reply 21 of 63, by AidanExamineer

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When I was in High School, there were Dell Optiplex 260 and 270s, desktops for the library lab, and towers for the computer lab (there was only one at first). By the time I graduated a bunch of newer Dell Optiplexes had been installed, and a new lab added. I think they were 520s and 620s, a mix of desktops and towers.

Many years later, I work for the same school district I went to school in, and we're finally phasing out the last of the Optiplex 520, 620s, and 745s (which might have been slightly after my time). Since then, the district went through a long Lenovo phase, a very brief HP phase, and is back to Dell.

Dell's current enterprise product is NICE.

Reply 22 of 63, by Matth79

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TRS-80, Acorn Atom, BBC Micro, Apple II - the heyday of the 8 bit era.
In computer studies, learned Pascal, but also did BASIC and some assembler on Atom & BBC - this was when only the geeks did computers.

Some time later, learned COBOL on a course.

As far as PC tinkering goes, self-taught ... started with a bit of upgrading on my first, then went for a full build ... Tyan tomcat motherboard, Cyrix CPU and Cirrus 5446 graphics

Reply 23 of 63, by Kodai

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My first high school was shut down after my first two years (not enough students so lack of funding). At that school, we had a mix of older and newer machines. PC-jr's and TRS-80 Model II's and III's. The model II had some awesome external 8" disk drive that all the other model II's connected via long ribbon cables and shared the one drive. None of the II's had a drive in the machine (just a black plastic cover in place of the standard drive). There were a few Apple II's (mix of regular, the plus, and the E's) as well.

My second high school had more contemporary machines. Apple II-GS's and clone 8086's and 80286's. The x86's were in the PC lab and the II-GS's were in the regular class rooms. In both schools, every class room had a mimeograph machine, 🤣. I kinda miss that smell of the mimeograph fluid. 😄

Reply 24 of 63, by tayyare

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We had sprit duplicators instead. And the printing fluid was blue sprit! 🤣

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Reply 25 of 63, by Iris030380

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I believe the newly constructed computer room had a full deck of RM Nimbus 386-SX based PC's which took around 11 minutes to boot up, and Mr Harston (one of the mathematics teachers) ran the class. It was for year 10's and onwards though, and by the time I hit year 10 they had been replaced by 486-SX-66 based PC's running Windows 3.1 and those lessons were boring. I could never figure out how to sneak Doom onto those PC's. By the end of my brief IT tutorship (drawing shapes in Paint, importing them to office and cranking out spreadsheets) the school had upgraded to Windows 95 based Pentium 75's and employed a new IT tutor who didn't look much older than me.

The Design and Technology workshop still had a couple of BBC Masters in there though, and I used to play Repton on my lunch break on them. I had one at home too so it wasn't very exciting. Come to think of it, I had a Pentium 200 vanilla with a VooDoo card at home by then too. No wonder I hated school! 😵

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Reply 26 of 63, by Rekrul

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I'm not sure what kind of computers my high school had. I think they were probably Apple II's.

I wanted to take the computer classes, but for some reason my school had a requirement that you couldn't take them unless you'd passed advanced algebra and (I think) geometry. While I won't deny that those subjects could be useful in some cases, I fail to see what they have to do with general BASIC programming.

I ended up getting a C64 and learning BASIC on my own. I never became a great programmer, but I wrote stuff more advanced than what my friend was learning in class. At one point he was given an assignment to write a program, but the instructions were so vague that he couldn't even fully describe it to me. Apparently they were told to write a program that did something, but I was never clear on exactly what.

Reply 27 of 63, by mrferg

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During my freshman year they were retiring the old Performas and were bringing in the new 233mhz iMacs. By my senior year there were iMac DVs and a single G4 tower. My schools were always Mac-centric, except for a pair of Micron P2s in the library.

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Reply 29 of 63, by brassicGamer

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In order:

1989: An early Acorn (possibly Archimedes) while in primary school.
1991: BBC Micro when I started secondary school.
1994: A later Acorn (possibly A3000) when I started GCSEs, mostly used for playing Lander.
1997: RM 486DX2 machines that I did IT A-Level on (Windows 95 and Access 2.0)

And on work experience when I was 14 I joined the local double glazing firm's IT department, using Dell 486 machines and some Wyze thin clients. Doom deathmatches during lunch breaks, which were particularly fun considering I had a 386SX-25 at home (Doom was played in a postage stamp).

Before we got a PC my Dad would bring an RM machine home from school during the holidays. Mostly used for Paint. Loved that spray can tool.

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Reply 30 of 63, by Jorpho

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The school board was firmly in the grip of Apple. Halfway through elementary school they started phasing out the Apple IIs for Mac Classics. I learned to touch-type on an Apple II running Appleworks, and would have taken the computer science course with Apple II BASIC if they had held on to them for just a little while longer – instead I spent a semester of dubious merit mucking around with Hypercard. By then the the Mac Classics were also being phased out for LC 475s, and I think some Power Macs started coming in shortly thereafter. There weren't many DOS PCs around – one special resource room had an IBM PS/1, the library later got an Aptiva due to someone's performance in some academic competition, and there were one or two truly ancient boxes that were practically useless and had probably been donated.

Reply 31 of 63, by alexanrs

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The school I attended as a child had a bunch of 386's before my fourth grade. Oh, they had one 486, and it was the only PC our teacher dared to install Windows 95 in. We learned a bit of DOS (DIR, CD, MD, RD and basic stuff like that) and, in Windows 3.11, we messed a bit with MS Word 6.0 and, I think, PowerPoint. It also had games (a Mario typing game, some Mikey jigsaw puzzle thing and - my favourite - Chuck Rock).
From my fifth grade onwards the PCs were upgraded to some configuration that could at least run Windows 9x decently well, and the teacher had a Windows 2000 server (the only really good PC there, but no one used it). By that time I already had a PC at home dial-up internet, and those PCs didn't really have anything interesting in them, so I don't remember much about them, except my family PC at home (a Cyrix MII 333) was faster.

In highschool we did not have "computer classes" anymore, and the PCs we could use there were kindda meh. Barely remember then. At home I had my dear trusty Duron 1200 + MX440, and I was happy with it, and while I was in my first year of high school we also got broadband internet at home (I was teaching a great-grandmother how to use PCs, and I used the money I was getting from it to help my mom pay for the Internet). Eventually we upgraded to an Athlon 64 3000+ (or should I say "I"... by that time PC parts and upgrades were my birthday and chirstmas presents already, and the household's PCs were already considered mostly mine), though I only learned to love it in college, when I got rid of the awful 64-bit FX 5200 that came with it.

Reply 32 of 63, by badmojo

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We had a bank of 486SX 25's with nice flip top cases, which I remember because I watched in horror as a mate flipped the lid on one and relieved it of 2MB's of its 4MB's of RAM.

Our I.T teacher was completely out of her depth and would reboot the machine at the first sign of trouble, so we'd manufacture said trouble and watch as she re-entered the admin password, allowing us install DOOM and magic eye on the network for all to enjoy. I pity the fool who was attempting to death match on the machine with 2MB's!

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Reply 33 of 63, by Gramcon

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Great thread!

My mom was a teacher when I was in elementary school and was allowed to bring home a computer during the summer, an Apple IIc. I still remember playing Lode Runner, Marble Madness and G.I. Joe on that thing -- good times.

When I was a freshman in high school, our computer lab sported 386SX-33's. I can still see the LED displays on those boxes that would clock down to 16 when you hit the Turbo button. I remember one computer was a 386DX-40. It was so much better for gaming! One of them had a CD-ROM drive, I think is was a 1x drive, that was extremely slow.

Then the lab moved to a new location on campus. Ours was a rather cash-strapped private school that depended mostly on donations to get new equipment. Sometimes when a family would get a new computer, they'd donate the old one to our school. We also got a lot of surplus machines from the local military base. As a result, my later years in high school we had an incredibly eclectic array of computers, everything from IBM XT's and AT's to the aforementioned 386's, various 486 clones of all shapes and sizes, some Cyrix MII's, AMD 586 and a couple K6-2's, some Pentium Overdrives and regular Pentiums 75 through 120, some being generic machines, and some HP Vectras, Microns and Dells. At times, all these would be in service simultaneously (except the XT's and AT's, they got phased out pretty quick when the Pentiums came along)! Then the base surplused a bunch of Pentium II-233MMX's, and it felt like we were in high cotton. This setup was a computer lover's dream -- I got permission to keep all the Fraken-puters running, as they were all donations and in various stages of functionality, swapping out parts and repairing them as needed. We even had an old, gigantic (I think it was 54-port!) 10-base-T hub that I scored off of EBay (old EBay back in the day) that we used to network them all together in a basic file/print sharing Win95 LAN (only the teacher's computer had internet back then, and that came right before I left).

Our tiny school had over 75 computers at one time, many of them parts boxes sitting in a back room behind the library. We had no IT department. It was the lab teacher, my friends and I who did all the work, and it was great fun.

Unfortunately, after we all left, the school modernized and hired a local company to provide them with PCs and computer services. All of that retro gold probably ended up in the dumpster. If only they had saved it!

Reply 34 of 63, by bristlehog

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IBM RT with AOS installed.

ibmrt.jpg

This one, with black and white display.

They could connect to the internet. If anyone wanted to browse sluggishly in black and white.

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Reply 35 of 63, by shamino

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In middle school and my first high school, it was a tradition for every classroom to have some type of Apple II in it that nobody ever used.

The worst computer lab I ever encountered was in middle school. They had an ancient lab full of diskless TRS-80 computers which got all their files from something that a person might be tempted to call a network. The file server was a full TRS-80 with disk drives. It was horrific. We would spend half the class time taking turns loading a prescribed file, because if too many people did it at once, the "server" would lock up. By that time, the TRS-80 was completely obsolete junk, but it was all they had for that class.
They should have rounded up all the idle Apple IIs from the other classrooms and made that lab (and the computers) useful. But I guess they wanted to say they had "a computer in every classroom" or some such wasteful nonsense.

In High School, my typing class Freshman year still had 286s. Didn't do anything with those except type. I took another class that had typewriters, but it wasn't a typing class, so I didn't actually use them, but they were there.

A high school medical class I took had a decorative Apple IIGS. One day the teacher decided to acquaint us all with what a computer is. He started asking people at random to identify the parts of the PC. When I was able to identify a mouse, people looked at me like I was some kind of freaky nerd genius or something.

After moving to another school, I took a BASIC programming class which used 486DX-33 machines. I don't remember the brand. We used QBasic and did.. basic BASIC stuff. The teacher was quite politically correct and lectured anyone who was caught putting "Merry Christmas" on the screensaver.
For math classes most people had a TI-82 graphing calculator. I later lost mine and replaced it with an 83 (new model at the time). I later lost that too, and my current TI-83 feels cheaper made than the old one. I liked the buttons on the old one.
That high school didn't have computers in every classroom. They had TVs. I have no idea what the hell they were thinking. My math teacher refused to take the stickers off of his, just so it could symbolize the monetary waste.
Classes that actually played videos, like History, didn't even use those TVs. They were too small, in the corner of the room, and the speakers were too weak. So they kept wheeling in a big TV on a cart, just like the old days.

Reply 36 of 63, by ynari

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Infant/Junior school : computers? What are they?
Secondary school : BBC Micro. Didn't get calculators until about the third year.
College : RML 380Z/480Z (Fortran, device control because of the I/O). Amstrad PC1512/1640. Apple II (process control/engineering). Z80 based assembly/IO tutorial board.
University : 386/486, possibly some pentium. Sparcstations. Apollo computers.

Reply 37 of 63, by elianda

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We had a room of Robotron KC87 with data storage on cassette. However this was just because it was a special school with focus on natural sciences. Normal high schools* had no computers. (* Polyteschnische Oberschule)
Price for a KC87 was ca. 3000 Mark if you could get one.

300px-Robotron-KC87-1.jpg

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Reply 38 of 63, by tayyare

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ynari wrote:
Infant/Junior school : computers? What are they? Secondary school : BBC Micro. Didn't get calculators until about the third year […]
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Infant/Junior school : computers? What are they?
Secondary school : BBC Micro. Didn't get calculators until about the third year.
College : RML 380Z/480Z (Fortran, device control because of the I/O). Amstrad PC1512/1640. Apple II (process control/engineering). Z80 based assembly/IO tutorial board.
University : 386/486, possibly some pentium. Sparcstations. Apollo computers.

From a badly translated document, my years in University: 🤣 (1988-1996) (METU CC: Middle East Technical Uni. Comp. Cent.)

1988 METU CC was connected to EARN-BITNET with Unisys A9F.

1990 IBM 3090/180S started servicing with VM/XA operating system. The system had 1 vector processor, 128 MB memory, 22.5 GB disk (3380), 135 colorless (3191) and 15 color (3192) terminals, 2x4245 (20001 pm) line printers, 2 magnetic tapes (6250 bpi) and 2 cartridge drivers (32000 bpi).

METU CC and the university campus were connected to EARN-BITNET with IBM 3090/180S.

3 terminal rooms started serving in Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering and Physics departments.

Token ring (16 MB/s) was established on campus and connected to mainframe computers from 16 locations.

1992 UNISYS U6065 was installed with 3 processors, 16MB memory and 1.3 GB disk.

HP/9000 817S was installed with 16MB memory, and HP-UX operating system.

RISC/6000 System 32 was installed with 16 MB memory, 1GB disk and AIX operating system.

The first Internet connection from METU to the Netherlands by X-25 was established.

1993 16MB memory and 3.9GB disk were added to UNISYS U6065 and HP817S for the purpose of capacity improvement.

Turkish Internet Connection (TR-NET) was established between METU, Ankara and NSF Washington DC. A line of 64 kbps was established between METU and NSF. This connection served the whole country.

2 PC rooms in the first and second dormitories opened to help use Novell network operating system.

UNISYS B6930 system was removed.

Sun Server was installed with a 32MB memory and 4GB disk.

UNISYS A9F was closed to the access of academic staff and users.

METU-NET was expanded to 22 access points.

1994 IBM 3270 terminal rooms at Mechanical Engineering Department, Civil Engineering Department and Physics Department were converted to PC rooms. 83 PCs located in these rooms served by Novell Netware server and were connected to METU-NET via multi-protocol routers. Tatung 1041 server 32MB memory was bought with 1GB disk. IBM SP2, the first Supercomputer in Turkey which entered the top 500 list all around the world was used in METU, (http://www.top500.org/site/1145 376th place).

IBM 3090/180S +VF aged after five years' work and was replaced by three IBM 590S File Servers and one IBM SP2 (with 8 nodes) Compute Server, all running under AIX (IBM UNIX operating System).

The Compute Server SP2 (Scalable POWER2parallel Systems) is composed of 8 nodes with POWER2 processors. Serial, batch, parallel and interactive workloads can be concurrently processed on SP2 (nautilus). It is capable of processing compute-intensive jobs. There are three POWERserver 590s that are planned to provide file services as well as the processing power that can easily support the usual workload at the university. POWERserver 590 also has POWER 2 processors. Two of the POWERserver 590s(rorqual and narwhal) are connected directly to 80 gigabytes of RAID disk. Three POWERserver 590s and four nodes of SP2 are connected to FDDI network.

Systems were connected to the METU backbone (METU-NET) through the token ring cards that are on two of the POWERserver 590s. There are two token-ring cards on each machine to increase the availability of the system's connection to the METU backbone AIX operating system that runs on the systems.

1995 IBM Scalable POWERparallel System (SP2) was installed and offered to service. This system consists of 8 nodes, each having 64 MB memory and 1 GB disk. This system serves users who need high performance computing and dense processor usage.

1996 HP 800/E25 and IBM RISC 6000 POWERserver J30 and G90 model systems were bought and made available for usage, in order to increase the processor power of installed systems. Additionally, Robot Tape Library systems were installed to make backing up more reliable and safe.

GA-6VTXE PIII 1.4+512MB
Geforce4 Ti 4200 64MB
Diamond Monster 3D 12MB SLI
SB AWE64 PNP+32MB
120GB IDE Samsung/80GB IDE Seagate/146GB SCSI Compaq/73GB SCSI IBM
Adaptec AHA29160
3com 3C905B-TX
Gotek+CF Reader
MSDOS 6.22+Win 3.11/95 OSR2.1/98SE/ME/2000