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Erik Klein at the 6th Vintage Computer Festival

Hello all,

Back in the late 1970s I was a fairly typical Jr. High School kid with probably a bit more knowledge about computers then most. My father was an Engineer for IBM and, eventually, other companies and always had a ready supply of Byte, Microcomputing, Creative Computing and Datamation magazines lying around for me to read. This ability to at least "talk the talk" had an impact on the kids I associated with and the activities I ended up involved in.

Then, in 1978, after spending hours at card punches and 3278s at dad’s office, I bumped into the first computer I could relate to. The school district had purchased a Commodore Pet for the younger kids to play spelling and word games on. I managed to get a little after-hours access and I was hooked.

In subsequent years I took a variety of computer classes, attended a "computer camp" hosted by NY State University and continued to putter around with whatever machines I could get my hands on. The school district had a PDP-8 as well as the Pet and, eventually, they purchased some other machines.

By 1980 I had established myself as a full-fledged, card-carrying geek and I was pushing hard to get my own computer. Of course, at 14 you can't expect much but I saved my pennies and looked for opportunities. By the summer of 1981 I was close to being able to afford my "dream machine" of the day: An Atari 800. I felt that it was a better machine then the Apple ][ and I could probably get a better deal on it.

When the time came to empty my piggy bank and actually buy the machine my dad intervened and offered to buy us both the just recently introduced IBM Personal Computer. I reluctantly accepted this deal but then suffered the months in waiting for that box to arrive. Finally by December 1981 the machine was set up and running a variety of little games that I’d written to amuse myself and my brothers.

In early 1982 I became one of the founding members of the Long Island PC Users Group (a SIG of the Long Island Computer Association) and, by default, one of the club officers. I contributed to the club newsletter pretty much every month and eventually ran the clubs BBS until I started college and was forced to turn it over to another. I later ran another general purpose BBS for a time.

When IBM introduced DOS 2.0 the club offered a seminar to the community to raise some funds. I ran a couple of sessions including the introduction to BASIC 2.00 and the new features added to the language. That seminar got me my first “real” computer job and lost me my paper route. I then spent the next six years or so trying to convince myself that I didn’t want to work in computers because that would ruin the fun for me. While I wasn’t too far from the truth, I did fail to convince myself and, after paying my way through college with various programming jobs I started a career in software that still pays the bills.

During my career I’ve programmed in a variety of languages including Visual BASIC, COBOL, FORTRAN, C and C++, BASIC, PowerBuilder, Clarion and Gupta SQLWindows. Projects have ranged from simple word processors to vehicle tracking systems to a variety of medical applications.

A few years ago I bumped into eBay and started nostalgically browsing around their vintage computer category. The end result is the functional equivalent of a heroin addiction that costs less but takes up more space. I started collecting old computers. Specifically I collect old PCs. First just the machines that had a particular history with me (the Atari 800 I once coveted, the Apple ][ Plus I learned BASIC on, the IBM PC I first owned, etc.) and then it became any machine I remembered reading about, playing with or regarding as cool at one point.

Today my still modest collection numbers over 50 machines; most of which work well and have original documentation, software and, in some cases, original packaging. Most of these machines are proudly displayed on this site. The ones that aren’t eventually will be.

I am also using the website to host The Vintage Computer Forum, a discussion board to help foster the community of computer collectors worldwide and the Vintage Computer and Gaming Marketplace, an auction site for vintage computing enthusiasts.

Thanks for visiting!

Erik S. Klein


(Submitted June 27, 2012 16:30:41 by Asim Bijarani)

Hi, I'm Asim from Pakistan, and I'm very glad that I found this website because I'm so much interested in Computers and its history, this site is very interesting and informative, I wish I had all those machines that you've got. Best of Luck.


(Submitted July 24, 2010 11:18:42 by Clarence Hoes)

I have a bunch of old TMs (mostly electronic and computer) that I'd be willing to donate (going as far back as the 70s) as I will be moving in two weeks. I am located in Silicon Valley. Let me know if you're interested or if you know someone who is. 408-984-1094 Thanks.


(Submitted October 5, 2008 23:32:09 by Gustav Ahlen)

Hello Erik. I like very much this website and your work. I am a nostalgic man and I found this great site with a gorgeous data. Congratulations! Good luck Gker.


(Submitted September 27, 2008 11:08:18 by David Kleyn)

Hi Erik,

,Great site with lots of usefull information for a dutch micro fanaticus like myself.

kind regards, David Kleyn : )


(Submitted July 17, 2008 12:07:17 by Charlie Garrett)

Erik, Well done on all counts with the site and your collection. We are about the same age and my story is similar to yours, I wanted an Atari 800 but dad got me the Apple IIe. I also used to progam on Texas Instruments using Logo at school (great softwre tool that). I have total respect for what you have done here.

Like you, not only does programming pay the bills, there is still nostalgia about it. Based on what I have read on your site I am going to go find me that Atari 800 on eBay!

Cheers, Charlie


(Submitted June 6, 2008 07:24:41 by Tim Culek)

Know anyone who wants a c64, floppy, power supply, etc. Free plus ups shipping. 440-944- 9863 or tim@culek.net


(Submitted April 11, 2008 09:11:58 by Larry Dietz)

I looking for a couple of old apple 2e games. Pest patrol and morrio brothers. We used to really play these alot when I had a Franklin Ace computer.


(Submitted August 31, 2007 15:36:11 by BusterGates)

Greetings Erik (my middle name too): Very nice and very helpful site, eBay should take a cue from you and list the obvious questions and answers any struggling newbie would be begging to learn regarding old collectible pieces of iron. I'm so glad I stumbled over your nuggets of IBM 5150 information instead of leaving me to dangle on eBay from now to eternity. Thanks again dude, you're a hero as far as I'm concerned. You gotta very nice and easy-to-use site and a lot to be proud of.

-Peter Ross-


(Submitted August 24, 2007 04:35:59 by kyle senior)

hi any idea how much a HL500 PC/laptop thing would be worth? i have found only a small snippet of info on it. thanks


(Submitted August 22, 2007 15:08:35 by Mike Leonard)

Let's dig into the MINI's. Get some shots of IBM's d/e stations, and especially HP's 150, 250 and supported ascii/async workstations.

Mike L


(Submitted July 17, 2007 05:51:21 by Glen Mackenzie)

I was wondering if you could help me. I have an Interstate vintage games console, model 1160 and was wondering how to go abouts selling it. Please try and help!


(Submitted January 5, 2007 16:48:49 by Michael Wynn)

I have in my possession the origional prototype for IBM Electronic Typewriters. It is the first to feature equispacing capabilities and is the standard from which all keyboards were made.


(Submitted October 18, 2006 15:31:27 by Jill Foster )

Hi Erik. I am looking for the first ever advertisement for JD Edwards software. The company was founded in 1977, and their first packaged product was called Upstream Accounting, and geared towards the Oil & Gas Industry. I don't even know what magazines would publish such ads, but it would probably be in the same realm as SAP, Baan, Peoplesoft etc. I figured a geek of your caliber should be able to help us out.


(Submitted October 3, 2006 08:43:26 by David)

What a spectacular collection! Will LOVE to have one of those ALTAIR 8800's and a COMPLETE IMSAI 808 system!! :)


(Submitted August 9, 2006 07:55:30 by patrick)

i need your help buddy! i'm looking for a replacment board for a seagate 200g st3200822a firware3.01 date code 05172 i will pay up to (whatever usd) if needed and we do 3d flash website i'd throw one in too ! my number is 613 937-0005 thanks Patrick flash media team


(Submitted July 12, 2006 15:24:01 by Matthew Pope)

You have a very nice collection Eric; the most complete I've seen. Two ideas: a) make a virtual tour of your computers, navigable from cyberspace, and free b) using a little startup money, rent some space in the Bay area and open a computer museum. Charge admission to cover your costs, and enough to pay for a staffer so you can continue your computing career with the museum being self-supporting. If you make it non-profit, and then you can accept (corporate) donations to keep admission prices low. Best of luck, Matthew (in Toronto)


(Submitted April 4, 2006 10:29:09 by Robert Cripe)

Hi Eric, I have two Altos 8000s with monitors, and actually a bunch of 8 diskettes, that I want to unload. I live in the Chicago area. Are you interested? Thanks, Bob


(Submitted March 31, 2006 19:15:43 by Jonathan)

Hi, interesting site you got there. I had a good time reading.

If you'r around sweden sometime I've got a perfectly good Compaq Presario for you :)

Live long and prosper


(Submitted November 16, 2005 08:02:54 by Mark Wilson)

have several vintage computers. one is a tandy 1000 rlx in excellant condition. it works great 1 Ialso have a tandy 1000 SL in good condition. I also have two Mac SE/30 's. all work and have software . how much are they worth? any help would be appreciated


(Submitted October 10, 2005 21:04:29 by Thomas)

Hi. I would like to know if I should trash this computer or try to find it a new home. It's a Motorola EXORset 100, still in working condition with two 5,25 drives and software. I am living in Denmark, so a donation to your site, as much as I would like to, would be rather effortless :0( Thankyou for the best site on vintage computers I have ever come across.


(Submitted September 23, 2005 18:43:14 by Warren)

I'm on Long Island, NY, and have a Sanyo MBC 550 early (1980?) DOS machine with 256K RAM board, outputs to color TV or mono or RGB monitor, has 2 onboard 5-1/4 drives, keyboard with Break key, this was before slots for expansions and before mice! Has RS232 and LPT1 ports, lots of software (exe, Basic and BasicA), graphics and desktop publishing programs like Fontasy, NewsMaster, Printmaster; PC File & PCWrite. Have its books and original manual and a ton of disks of games/utils/etc! It's looking for a good home lol!


(Submitted July 30, 2005 16:43:53 by larry b)

I made the mistake of buying a laptop from ebay (MY FIRST AND LAST TIME!!!!)It's a compaq lte/286;It came with no power cord and a dead battery.....I NEED SOME HELPP!!!where can i get a cord and will ibe able to use it online?? any help is appreciated... thank you


(Submitted July 24, 2005 20:24:43 by Gary Sallee)

Will give complete set of Byte magazines. Pick up in Yorba Linda, Orange County, CA. (714) 970-0901


(Submitted April 13, 2005 11:30:18 by Barb McCleery)

I have a commodore-64 computer w/all sorts of tape/disks/1985-1994 magazines & manuals & self help tapes, disks etc. I would like to get rid of. Moving & don't know whare to go with it. Intrested in selling. Make an offer etc. Please e-mail me at bamccleery@yahoo.com


(Submitted April 13, 2005 11:29:09 by Barb McCleery)

I have a commodore-64 computer w/all sorts of tape/disks/1985-1994 magazines & manuals & self help tapes, disks etc. I would like to get rid of. Moving & don't know whare to go with it. Intrested in selling. Make an offer etc. Please e-mail me at bamccleery@yahoo.com


(Submitted April 4, 2005 10:06:25 by Nancy Clark)

Hi -- I have a large amount of old computer related magazines, some are premier issues. Would you like me to send a list. Are you buying these items or is it simply by donation only. I also have boxes full of curcuit boards, schmetics, books & much more -- please emaill me with your contact information. Thank you!


(Submitted March 29, 2005 08:06:31 by Jessica)

I WOULD LIKE TO ADD THAT THIS IS THE BEST SITE ON THE COMPUTER AND THAT I WILL TELL MY FRIEND ABOUT IT


(Submitted February 18, 2005 05:18:04 by chris)

Erik I noticed you have an 'unknown' under ROM size for your PETS. It's in 2k blocks, in 24 pin chips (you can't miss them!) I'm going from a long way back, but the 2000 and 3000 series had 4 roms (8k) and the 4000&8000 have 5 (10k) to handle the extra disc functions. The other spare sockets were for eprom tookits. 2 on the 4000/8000 and 3 on the 2/3000. By the look of it, you have the toolkits installed on your 2000 model.(no spare sockets) Chris


(Submitted February 1, 2005 10:19:28 by Margaret Graham)

I have a Zeneth portable computer, one of the first portable computer's available in personal computing and would like to donate it rather than trash it. I also have software that I used while I was using it. If you are interested in having this added to your collection, please Email me at (mjgraham@uci.edu) or (mountainoutin@cox.net). This is my husband's email address for our family business. His name is Rolland Graham. We need to make a decision this month and would like to hear from you. The machine is an early dos computer.


(Submitted January 6, 2005 09:11:32 by Ron Cooper)

Thanks for taking the time and exerting the effort to build your interesting and educational website. I retired from programming in 1998 after 34 years, so it was particularly nostalgic and entertaining for me.


(Submitted November 29, 2004 01:18:16 by Ashishpurna Burhagohain)

I am lacking in words to describe the quality and effort you took to construct such a nice and knowlageable site. I am not that resourceful to help you in your stride but anyway good luck. God bless you.......


(Submitted June 7, 2004 11:54:00 by john.websternetsupport..com)

We have a byte magazine collection, dates, Sept 87 – Mar 90

Nov 82-Nov 84

Jan 85 – Aug 97

Apr 90 – Feb 93

May 93-Feb 96

Feb 79 - Oct 82 Netsupport.com

Cell 602-390-4805

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