This is late, as many others have already shared their stories, but here's the short story on how I got into computers.
In the neighborhood I grew up in, I was apparently be labeled "at risk." Probably would have been vote most likely to be convicted of a white-collar crime. One day there was some kind of parent-teacher-school district superintendant meeting and they decided if we don't give this kid something to do, we're going 'lose him.' So, my fifth grade teacher let my dad and I borrow the Apple II computer over the weekends. I started using friends' TI89/A's and spent more than one weekend typing and printing a 20 page (20 pages of 8x11 ASCII ) poster of Mister Spock on a TRS/Trash80.
Then, a few months later, the parents sold our van to buy me a Commodore 64, and a few copies of COMPUTE! magazine pretty much insured I'd be indoors for life.
Fast forward 5 years (various operating systems I used described here in an earlier unrelated post) and I was selling my services (which consisted of a complex 'document recovery' racket at local high schools [né 'business'] as Tweak Inc. running entirely off a single copy of Norton Disk Doctor).
Fast forward a few more years and I was running Tweak Computer Support and BBS and programming Win16 apps in C.
Fast forward a few more years and I sell Don Box a Newton on opening day.
Fast forward a bit more and you can find me posting on USENET from nike.com.
Fast forward <10 years and I'm working at Corillian Corporation and blogging with you fine people. And it all started with my fifth grade teacher letting me type 'CATALOG' into an Apple II.
Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. I am a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.