Sunday, December 28, 2014

Jon Titus - Computer Pioneer comments about 3 of his mentors

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Bugbook Historical Microcomputer Museum
Jon Titus

(From Design News November 2013During my several careers I had the good fortune to learn from three mentors, and as I wrap up my career, they deserve mention. I hope you have had equally good fortune to work for and with such good people.

"When I got to grad school, I met David Larsen, who taught an 'electronics for scientists' class at Virginia Tech. We hit it off right away, and a few years later Dave helped several of us start a company that created educational electronic hardware and books for people interested in computers and electronics. Dave showed us new ways to approach business, gave us encouragement, and suggested helpful marketing ideas. I learned a lot about how to work with people, how to communicate well, how to conduct business fairly, and how to carefully evaluate business opportunities. He might not realize how much I learned from him and how I still enjoy our friendship. Now Dave promotes amateur radio for personal and emergency communications in the Republic of Dominica through his FAIRS charity based in Floyd, Virginia."

The other two mentors Jon mention as his good fortune to work with are his eighth grade science with John Shuttleworth & Roy Forsberg was the editorial director of EDN magazine. 

Bugbook Historical Microcomputer Museum
Design News
Read the entire editorial Jon wrote as his  last in a long series of columns for Design News at retirement in November 2013.  The information above  is quoted directly from the editorial in Design News 11/27/2013.


I have always had a great respect for Jon Titus and the 10 years we worked together in the "Blacksburg Group" were some the most rewarding during my 31 year career as a faculty member at Virginia Tech. Thank you Jon - for the friendship and wonderful memories - Dave Larsen

Jon's contribution's to the Blacksburg Group were many and I have written about some of them here in my blog. A few of his contributions are ....

MMD-1 Vintage 8080 Microcomputer reported to be the First Single Board Computer

Vintage Computer - WHAT inspired Titus to design the "MARK 8" Computer ?

Vintage Computer Collector Memorabilia - Titus 8080 Microprocessor  Slide Rule

Vintage Computer MARK 8 - 40 year Anniversary July 2014 - Start of something Big

Vintage Computer MARK 8 sent to MARCH in Wall NJ

Microcomputer - Micro-Designer MD-80 one of the first complete educational / design Microcomputer Systems

Vintage Computer - Earles L McCaul - Author - A personal success story the last 32 years

David Larsen
I  retired from Virginia Tech 17 years ago as a faculty member in the Chemistry Department - it  seems like it was yesterday. I have many fond memories of jobs, projects, family and friends. It has been said  you can't look back but that seems simplistic to me - my computer museum is all about looking at the past - .  at 76 I don't think old and fortunately I don't even feel old - the past memories keep me looking forward and wondering what interesting and fun thing will be next. For sure this Christmas with my wife, children, grandkids & great grandkids gathering at our house was just wonderful.  I counted 28 for dinner last Friday and still today at least 6  in the house today 4 days after Christmas. WOW!!!    
                            ."by David Larsen"  KK4WW Computer Collector Historian   
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  1. Looking at your museum picture above reminds me of all the old computers and hardware that have been retired to the recycle bin where I work at a computer service store here in Rochester NY. I still have my old VIC20 and My Commodore 64 all packed away in their original boxes. I did however recycle those old xerox computers and hardware my older brother donated to me. I even remember the old HP Computers from when I worked as an Electronic Technician.
    73s from Dan KC2YTI

    1. Hi Dan - Thank you for reading my Blog. Yes most of the old computers were retired to the recycle bins. I have collected for 40 years+ so got many before they were pitched. It is fun for me to have the collection and then show a few off in the museum. I have over 10,000 items on my inventory and in the warehouse. The museum has about 350 items on display.

      I will be at Frostfest in Richmond VA 2-7-15 Saturday if you make it to these show. Will have small display of vintage computer there and hope to see you there or in Floyd VA. 73 Dave KK4WW at N4USA


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