MobileViews Blog

MobileViews Podcast 155: A look back at the IBM PC Users Network on Compuserve with its founder Don Watkins

Jon Westfall and I (Todd Ogasawara) welcome special guest Don Watkins in this podcast.

  1. 2016 is a big anniversary year for tech.
    Apple turns 40 on April 1 – incorporated on Jan. 3, 1977 for purists
    The IBM PC turns 35 in August. Ref: IBM Archives: The birth of the IBM PC
  2. Extreme Tech: Could the 9.7-inch iPad Pro kickstart a tablet upgrade cycle?
    2GB RAM vs. 4 on 12.9″ Pro. A9X clocked down. No Smart Keyboard available to pre-order on 3/24. Embedded Apple SIM.
  3. Nik Collection by Google photo filters for PhotoShop and Aperature now free. Was $150. Works with Open Source GIMP photo editor on some Windows PCs. I have not tried the combo on a Mac yet.
  4. Don Watkins (PCNet-Online.com) founded the IBM Users Network on Compuserve in 1982, a year after the IBM PC launched. In the years before the Internet became available to regular people (vs. those on the ARPANET or MILNET), Compuserve was one of the few online services with a national reach via mostly localized dial-up modem banks and mainframe backend (vs. BBS running on an Apple II or CP/M based microcomputer). We discuss the early years of the IBM PC era, his role in kickstarting large online communities, and other topics in this podcast. You can see an interview with Don on Computer Chronicles from January 9, 1987 at the 11 min. 30 sec. mark of this YouTube video.