Posted by: Duncan Chowdhury | January 16, 2008

My First Experience with Personal Computer

I started operating PCs, in the late Eighties. I was working then in Chittagong. My first PC was Acer Personal Computer with clock speed of 8Mhz and in turbo mode it would boost up to 12Mhz. This was a 8086 generation machine. When it was purchased it had no hard disk with it, only two 5.25 inches floppy drive bays. The computer ran on DOS 2.1, first I had to insert the Floppy disk with DOS Commands, which booted the Computer taking a couple of minutes. I used mainly Word Star Release 4 for word processing and Lotus 2.2 for Spread Sheet purposes. The Word Star or Lotus application disk had to be inserted in one disk bay and the data files would had to be saved in disk inserted in the other disk bay. The difficulty was in spell checking, in that case I had to remove the Word Star application disk and insert Word Star application disk 2 in the first drive. Today we realize how clumsy it was to work with this machine which had so limited capability. However, I was more than happy in those days with this Personal Computer because it just replaced the typewriter and it was very much versatile in comparison to the typewriter.

A couple of months later our computer vendor could provide me with a hard disk, which made things much easier. Seagate Hard Disk was available in 20 Megabyte or 40 Megabyte capacity. First I asked for the 40 Megabyte hard disk and the vendor exclaimed that big offices or banks required those huge hard disks, 20 Megabyte Hard Disk was more than enough for me, I will be able to save 4,000 to 5,000 pages of texts in a 20 MB hard disk, so I had to be satisfied with that. In those days, Windows were yet to come, we worked on DOS based programs, the texts were saved in ASCII characters, which took only about 5 KB for an A4 size paper. Still Personal Computer was a prize possession for me during those days, as people hardly used a computer or even had a glimpse of it.


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