We’re excited about the new year so for the month of January we’re posting a series of all manner of things that motivate and inspire us.

Apple II Applesoft BASIC Programmer's Reference Manual

For today's entry in this series we have a story from Mike about how he got into computers. As with Franklin's submission, it all started with BASIC.

My father was an art-director for an aerospace company and we always had a computer around the house. One afternoon, while he was at work, I found a reference manual flopped in a drawer about the BASIC programming language. I was just a little kid, but I knew that it described things the computer could do, and I knew how to type things in with the keyboard, so I typed in one of the examples from the book. The computer responded by displaying stuff on the screen from the example. This doesn't seem like much, but it was like a revolution to me. I had no idea people could make their own programs. You just had to know the secret words, and they were there in that book!

When my dad got home from work and discovered that I had been snooping around his computer parts, he sat me down, and taught me about variables, IF-statements, and more advanced commands like GOTO and FOR.

That's where it started. My dad was awesome and I've been making things with secret words ever since.

The Apple II Applesoft BASIC Programmer's Reference Manual can be found on Scribd along with a slew of other programming manuals.