Last Updated December 20, 2007
I got my start programming computers in 1980 on a Commodore PET in my freshman year at McHenry West High School. I got a VIC 20 in 81, followed by the C= 64 and the C= 128. On the VIC 20 I wrote my original BBS software(VicNet), a 40 column terminal program(the VIC had 22 columns), and a couple games. On the C=64/128 I had a series of BBS software(64-Net I, II, ]I[, 128-Net I, II, ]I[) and a terminal program(MusicTerm I, II, ]I[, and IV) that worked in conjunction to allowed real-time music, sprite animation, character animation, and joystick control. All of this at the super fast speed of 300 baud! Here's a video demo of the software in action. There's a group of us trying to get the BBS and MusicTerm to work via VICE so it can be used online. My BBS was known as The Dragon's Lair and my handle was The Dragon Master, or The Dm for short. At one time I even had THE DM on personized plates for my car. I also wrote a version of Space Invaders for the C=128's 80 column screen which was reviewed in the Sept/Oct issue of INFO in 1988.
After the C=128, I moved up to an Amiga - an 8mhz machine with full multitasking in under 1 meg of memory, full screen animation in 4096 colors at 60fps, and 4 channel digital sound. While that sounds primitive today, this was in the second half of the 80s when the PC norm was a single program at a time, 16 colors and the built-in piezo speaker. Regrettably Commodore went under, probably for pushing a computer so far ahead of its time. I remember all the PC owners denouncing it with "I can never do more than one thing at a time anyway, what good is it". Well, since most of them are still running micro$oft products, they still don't have a clue :-)
After experiencing the Amiga, I chose OS/2 Warp ver 3.0 to put on my first PC in November of 1994. There was no way I could subject myself to the limitations of Windows 3, a glorified DOS shell.
In 2003 my friend Bryan gave me an old PowerMac G3 to see what Appled had done with OS X. To say it was impressive would be an understatement. Over a 6 month period my use transitioned from OS/2 to OS X.
My current systems are a 1.8 GHz 20" iMac G5 and MacBook DuoCore, both running OS X ver 10.4.8, and an old 900MHz ThinkPad running Xubuntu.
I graduated from the University of Houston and currently work at Spacedesign in Houston Texas.
© 2007 Darrell Spice Jr.