Between 1989 and 1990 I remember taking various trips to my dads’ workplace. He was an engineer for a big manufacturing company. Often times I would accompany him on the weekends when he needed to work because of one reason or another. It was during these trips that I started collecting pieces of computers parts.
Over the period of a summer I slowly collected a motherboard, some ram, a processor, a case, hard drive, I could go one. Ended up being most of the pieces I needed to build my own computer. The problem is, I didn’t know how all the pieces were put together. It basically looked like a bunch of green boards piled high.
So I did what any sane twelve year old would do. I took my own computer apart with hopes that I could put it back together. This wasn’t the first time I had taken things apart. I remember dismantling a radio, a VCR, countless electronics, and even a TV (which happened to be when I learned about stored energy and how TV’s are dangerous). The goal was to take something apart, put it back together, and pray that it still worked. With the exception of the TV (which never was put back together), everything that was dismantled was successfully rebuilt.
With this knowledge in hand, I proceeded to put together the computer pieces from my dad’s work and began constructing my very own computer. It did not succeed without multiple failures at first. I recall the motherboard not doing anything, which took me forever to diagnose because it was the last thing I thought would be wrong. Multiple trips back to my dad’s office consisted of searches for various pieces.
Took me about two months, but after intense work, I booted up my first self-built computer made of spare parts. I was so happy to see the POST screen.
Little did I know that this was the start of my long term career in IT.