October 17, 2011
Twenty-eight years ago today, on October 17, 1983, I started my first full-time programming job after getting out of college. It was for the Illinois Department of Agriculture in Springfield, Illinois. I worked on COBOL programs at first, and then NOMAD2 programs. NOMAD was a 4GL language that ran on IBM’s VM architecture. I was also heavily involved in administering our local mini computer, and IBM 8100. It was a good job, and one that I still have fond memories of.
A tremendous amount has changed and happened since then, both profressionally and personally. One thing that hasn’t changed is my love for computers, and my love for working with them every day.
In twenty-eight years I’ll be 78 and hopefully retired from working. I suspect that computers will still be an important part of my daily life even then. What will be fascinating to me, is to see what shape and form computers and our interaction with them will be like in twenty-eight years. The first programs I wrote more than thirty years ago in high school existed on optical scan cards and paper tape. Today I carry two or three computers with me nearly everywhere I go. Who knows what another three decades will bring.