Monday, March 25, 2013

Getting nostalgic for some great gadgets


Pioneer's Supertuner car stereo.
The organization that runs the annual Consumer Electronics Show recently asked its Facebook followers what was their favorite among all the gadgets they have owned. Most people said their iPad, iPhone, satellite radio or some other device from the past decade.

My nostalgia for great gadgets goes much farther back in my memory banks. Some of my early electronic devices were my first kisses in what would be a 40-year love affair with gadgets and gear.

Of course, they were all eventually replaced by something newer and shiner. I too love my iPad. But I'm also fond of several early gadgets that did their jobs well and earned their keep.

My first computer is good example. While my friends went for the inexpensive Commodore 64 or the Texas Instruments TI99 in the early 80s because they were good for playing games, I saved up to buy the costlier Apple II+. As I recall, I paid about $1,200 with one floppy drive and no monitor. I wanted it because it could do everything.

My daughter learned the alphabet playing Sticky Bear while I used a word processor and modem to write magazine stories and launch a newsletter. And it was still the best computer for playing games like LodeRunner, Choplifter and Wizardry.

What else did I like? Do you remember Pioneer's Supertuner car radio? How about Mattel's handheld football game?

Take a stroll with me down digital memory lane at


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Follow me on Twitter @ricmanning and read my technology columns at My Well Being.


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