Between 1979 and 1985, I worked on several interesting projects with the education software division of Apple Computer, Inc.
In 1978 and 1979, I worked for Burroughs in Plymouth, Michigan. Our project team was implementing a language whose goal was to make development of business software on the Burroughs B-80 mini-computer quick and efficient.
Although the project did not become commercially available, it was a valuable experience for me. This was the first time I had left the university computing environment to work on a "real world" project.
I worked as a system programmer at the University of Delaware in Newark, Delaware, USA. for two years.
Among the things I did were:
While attending the University of Illinois at Urbana, I worked on the PLATO computer-assisted instruction system. This system, running on a CDC mainframe, was truly ahead of its time. In the early 1970s it was able to serve 500 users simultaneously with less than a tenth second response to every keypress. Each user had a 512 by 512 pixel-addressable graphic terminal.
I started working on the elementary reading project under the direction of John T. Risken. I moved on to the Modern Hebrew project led by Dr. Roberta Stock. I worked my way up to lead programmer for the Modern Foreign Languages PLATO project, headed by Dr. M. Keith Myers.
As an undergraduate at the University of Illinois , I took the usual range of computer science courses. I discovered the wonderful world of timesharing on the Burroughs B5500 at the Civil Engineering building. I wrote a program in ALGOL to do gymnastics scorekeeping, and used it to calculate the statistics for a national competition. I used an ASR-33 Teletype in the gym hooked up via acoustic coupler.