How did you learn about computing????
Each of us has a personal journey that ended in what we know about computing today and how we use these tools. This is the place to donate your story to HCLE. Here are the stories so far:

Liza Loop Story 01

Tom Trimbath Story 01 – calculators and FORTRAN

Tom Trimbath Story 02 – slide rules

Tom Trimbath Story 03 – PCs break through
pi squared

Ward Christensen Story 01

Delia Caban Story – A Spanish speaking office with English computers

There are many ways to do this.

Click on the comment section below and just start typing (we hope).


Write your story off-line and email it to Be sure to include your name, email, and permission to edit and publish your work. If you wish to restrict use of what you write, add the appropriate Creative Commons notice to your submission.

Send an email to with a request that we send someone to interview you.

Record your story on an audio medium and email it to


Send us a series of pictures with captions.

Whatever you choose, we want your story. How did you learn to use a computer? What hardware and software did you encounter? Who taught or helped you? How did you feel about this experience? Do you think there’s a better way? If your early computing experience was years ago, was it better in the old days? What have we gained and lost?

Once you became a computer user, what else did you learn through computing? Programming? Application tools such as word processing, using a spreadsheet or a statistical analysis package? Did you play educational games at school? Did your grades or class schedule come as a printout? (Truly there was a time before schools had computers!) What lessons has society learned, or not yet learned, about how we should allow computing to influence our lives?

Our focus is 1950 to 1990 — the era before widespread use of the world wide web. If you have stories from the 1950s and ’60s you have an especially important tale to tell. If you learned to read after 1990 your experience may be similar to that of many others but still interesting. Or you may want to interview your parents and grandparents. Also, please keep in mind that HCLE documents the intersection between ‘learning and education’ and ‘computing’, not the computer industry in general.

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