It’s amazing how much technology has changed – Rick Jackson

My favourite story this week was of a man who was sifting through his parents’ loft after his father passed away and found his first computer that he bought for his 10th birthday in 1983.

Wednesday, 20th February 2019, 3:41 pm
Updated Wednesday, 20th February 2019, 4:45 pm
Rick is reminiscing about his first games machine. Picture: Shutterstock.

He brought it downstairs, connected it all up and… it worked!

Hunting through more boxes, he found an old game on a disc.

Loaded it up and the computer asked if he wanted to ‘restore previously stored game’!

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This Apple II computer was quite rare in the UK but it reminded me of the time computer technology arrived in my life.

The first time I set my eyes on a game machine was in 1979. 

My uncle came round with a Grandstand video game machine. You loaded the bright yellow cartridge into the front and off you went.

The graphics were just simple lines on the screen and the sound effects consisted of simple blips, but we were mesmerised.

It didn’t matter anyway, as we only had a black and white TV back in the 1970s with a portable aerial.

We’d spend hours playing Pong, tennis and Dodge It until the computer overheated and went pop one evening.

In 1984, I was the envy of my school chums.

Forget the BBC Micro computer, that Christmas I received an Atari 800XL PC from Santa!

This boasted 64K RAM of memory and had amazing graphics for it’s time.

Being a computer, my mum had hoped I’d learn how to programme it.

Hours were spent on games like Decathlon, Galaxian and Rescue On Fractalus until my mum put a screen time ban on me.

We hear how kids today are being limited to the amount of time they are allowed on their tablets – well, this was happening to me back in 1984 so some things really do not ever change.  

By 1986, the latest computers were up to 500K RAM of memory but were far too expensive to buy.

Also by then, my geeky interest went from the keyboard to the railway and bus station.

How my mother despaired!


Who knows what the way forward is in air travel…

Is it a step back for mankind that Airbus will stop making the giant A380 aeroplane from 2021?

When Concorde first flew in 1969, we thought all planes would be supersonic and double decked by 2020 – but no.

You cannot fail to be impressed with the sheer size of the A380 and some of the First Class accommodation on airlines like Emirates is amazing.

But for the rest of us, does it matter if you are in an A380 or a Boeing 767 when we are crammed in like sardines?

No matter the size, air-travel will always be cramped and uncomfortable for the rest of us and the A380 did nothing to change that.

Maybe the quieter, more fuel efficient Boeing 787 Dreamliner really is the way forward?


Pompey’s performance has got me shaking in my shoes

I must admit, Pompey’s result ruined my Saturday. It’s been a long time since a game of football affected me so much.

The atmosphere around the club this season has been fantastic, but over the last few weeks, it feels like the wheels are coming off.

We’re live on Sky for the lunchtime kick-off, away to Southend United and after 30 minutes, we’re 3-0 up and looking supreme.

Then an injury sees Southend change a player and their formation. From then on, we looked second best and the final score was 3-3.

Oh, the disappointment and the worry we might repeat 1994 and lose in the play-offs. I can’t go through that again!