Kids React to (and are Confused By) Old Apple II Computers: VIDEO

Screen Shot 2014-05-26 at 7.01.31 AM

Depending on your age, this video will either rekindle some 1980s nostalgia or have you scratching your head at how a bulky, text-based computer with floppy disks, no mouse and no hard drive could have ever been considered 'cutting-edge technology.' 

Check it out, AFTER THE JUMP


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  1. It WAS cutting edge compared to the room size punch card computers that were used when I was in college.

    Posted by: jmartindale | May 26, 2014 9:47:09 AM

  2. Indeed, J, these kids will never know the heartbreak of dropping a box of punch cards down a stairway.

    Posted by: BobN | May 26, 2014 9:58:13 AM

  3. This is terribly condescending. Somebody show be explaining to thd kiddies that their iPad Mini is going to be every bit as ludicrous and useless in 30 years as that Apple II.

    Posted by: will | May 26, 2014 10:39:24 AM

  4. I had a hard drive with the first Apple ][ computer I used. I suspect kids would also be amazed that it cost $3,000 (which would be over $9,000 today) and only had 10 mb. You addressed data a 128 separate floppy disks, so you had to calculate where information would be on the drive.

    But my father was born into a world without cars (at least not in rural Tennessee, where indoor plumbing would also have been uncommon) or radio. And without antibiotics where a minor infection could be fatal.

    Posted by: Charlie | May 26, 2014 10:41:44 AM

  5. The command line remains one of the most powerful ways of interacting with computers. The fact that modern computers have UIs that have been dumbed down for the masses doesn't change that at all.

    Expert computer users can do many things on the command line in a fraction of the time it takes Joe Average to perform through a GUI.

    Posted by: ReaperX | May 26, 2014 11:21:12 AM

  6. The hardware has improved, but the most common forms of software, like text editors, haven't really improved since the early nineties.

    Posted by: anon | May 26, 2014 12:04:05 PM

  7. i really used to do all that AND not think anything about it? wow! i do wish i still had my Apple ][. i wonder how much they are worth today?

    i think the most fun video i've seen is a 4-year old with a paper magazine frustrated because the page didn't turn when she touched it, like an iPad!

    Posted by: mike/ | May 26, 2014 12:16:27 PM

  8. My original Apple II with peripherals cost just under $3,000.

    Posted by: Rob | May 26, 2014 12:42:54 PM

  9. Freshman year in music school, we did about half of our ear-training labs on Apple IIg machines. It was hysterically funny trying to make sense of interval recognition with the horrible tone generators in that thing. I'd rather have just picked around exercises on a piano, and I have never been the greatest keyboardist.

    Posted by: Jerry | May 26, 2014 4:59:40 PM

  10. In fairness that Apple sucked. CBM PET was the way to go, in that category.

    Posted by: Randy | May 26, 2014 5:29:32 PM

  11. The kid with glasses is a future Google employee.

    Posted by: daws | May 26, 2014 7:17:39 PM

  12. In fairness to these kids, these kids made no sense to me when I was a kid... other than I could insert a floppy disk into them and play games.

    Posted by: Ryan | May 27, 2014 12:40:35 AM

  13. I meant to say "these computers made no sense to me when I was a kid."

    Posted by: Ryan | May 27, 2014 12:44:48 AM

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