Rich's TI-99/4A Home Computer Page Introduction

Ah, I long for the good old days of computing! This is a TI-99/4A, an early 80's computer from Texas Instruments. According to my warranty information, I bought mine on October 8, 1982. I was a freshman in high school and I had wanted to buy a Timex Sinclair for $100. My parents thought that the 4A would be a better computer and loaned me the additional money to buy it. I remember spending hours listening to the radio (remember 99 Red Balloons?) and playing with this computer. My cousin Jim used to come over and we'd stay up all night programming and entering programs like Jumping Jack from 99er Home Computer Magazine.

Several years ago (I'm not sure when, I think the end of 1995), I began it get into the internet and I did a search for 'TI-99/4A'. I could only find one page: The TI-99/4A & TI-Parallelcomputing Page. If I remember correctly, the author was using a modified TI-99/4A to calculate prime numbers. Not even the official Texas Instruments web site made mention of the 4A. I had also found the comp.sys.ti newsgroup and I realized that there were more TI'ers out there other than myself. In any case, I was inspired to make my own TI-99/4A web page and I put one up on the web space that was provided by my ISP. That page received a tremendous response. Not only did the 'hard-core' TI'ers who still used their systems seem to enjoy the page, but I began to receive daily e-mails from people who were thrilled to find that someone had a web page dedicated to the computer that they had cut their teeth on. Most of those people told me that they had gotten their TI when they were in Grade or High School, and that the interest sparked way back then by the TI had lead to them to currently being in the computer business.

Towards the end of 1997, I began to run out of disk space on the web account that comes with my basic internet access account. To remedy this, I did some searching and on 3/22/98, I moved the web site to its current location at Interspeed. It's costing me $10/month, but the account has unlimited space and transfers, access to a CGI directory, and a vanity URL. This is a 'non profit' page, so the price was right! ;)

Some facts about the page:

  • The web site currently receives 400-500 visits a week.
  • The page has been chosen by the 80's Server as a 'Totally Awesome Site of the Day'.
  • The site is linked to from the official Texas Instruments TI-99/4A web page.

    Why did I make this web site much less keep it going for the last couple of years? Nostalgia sake I guess. As much as I hate to admit it, I'm not one of the people who uses their 4A regularly. I have it out, but it's hooked up to my PC so that I can transfer disk images to PC99 and capture AVI's. I've tried to create both a reference/archive site as well as a place where we can remember how much fun we had with our good old 4A. Hope you enjoy!

    -Rich Polivka

    TI-99/4A Specs:

    RAM: 16K

    CPU: TMS-9900, 16 bit

    Running at 3MHZ

    Graphic Resolution: 256x192

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