Hey everybody! My name is Richard but you'll probably see my on here as rchar66. I am a Product Designer by trade here in Milwaukee Wisconsin. I've been working at several companies over the years as a Product Designer now for the past 31 years. Designing all kinds of products from Stereo Headphones, Electrical Motor Components, Interior and Exterior Lighting, Food Service and Medical Carts. And now for the past 10 years I have been designing several different kinds of unloading mechanisms for covered hopper cars in the railroad industry.
My first experience with computers was in the early 1980's when I got my first computer, a Timex Sinclair ZX81, which I still have and it still works! I had to keep it because it was the first time I did some hacking and had to take a full size keyboard and re-wire it to make it work with that computer. The original keyboard eventually failed and beacuse it was on of those thin membrane keyboards and eventually failed from so much use.
After that computer I moved up to a Commodore VIC20 and then a Commodore 64. I used those computers a long time and had a lot of fun with them. Eventually I started using an Intel based PC, at first with just DOS and then Microsoft WIndows. After being completely fed up with dealing with all the issues of Windows, I started reading about Linux.
My first version of Linux was RedHat 5.2. I was able to get it installed but knew nothing about Linux and struggled with using Linux all together. I ended up not really ever using it, but played around with it here and there.
Then a few years later, I found Mandrake Linux. I had read a few articles about it and liked how it looked and decided to give that a try. I decided to install it on a brand new laptop that I bought. I figured I would do a fresh clean install and force myself to learn how to use Linux this time. And I'm glad I did! I started learning how to work on the command line and how to do a "hacking" to make the WiFi drivers work. It was fun and I actually was able to use the laptop for a lot of things and I was learning how Linux worked!
It was a few years after that when I had read about Ubuntu. I wasn't really interested in using Ubuntu, but Mandrake had become Mandriva, I was starting to have some small issues making things work after running some updates, so I thought, why not give Ubuntu a try? And the rest is history as they say.
After starting to use Ubuntu since version 7.04, I am now using 16.04 LTS on 2 System76 Meerkats, 1 is used as a desktop computer, the other as a HTPC on my TV, my laptop is a System76 Lemur and then of course I have my BQ M10 FHD tablet that came with Ubuntu Touch and now I have UBports on it.
From starting to use that Timex Sinclair ZX81 (at the age of 16) to logging in to local BBS's here in Milwaukee with my Commodore 64 to using DOS & Windows on Intel PC's to using Linux now (at the age of 51), I have seen a lot of different computer systems and have learned a lot! And it all of it has been fun! I wouldn't change or trade it for anything else.