My first working circuit that I designed was based on the Motorola MC1377. It’s a RGB to NTSC encoder. I am pretty certain I actually still have the chip stored away in my linear/analog microchip parts storage. Apparently they are still available NOS on eBay. I can’t claim that I designed it myself; I’m certain my best friend of the time, Jason G., likely had assisted and designed some of the circuit. At the very least he had a lot of input. It was decades ago, who has that kind of memory? Jason had gotten me interested in “the best” computer of the time. The Amiga 500. I don’t know if it was the best home computer of the time but it certainly was in front of the pack. A powerfully Motorola 68000 and color computing when the 8088 just got 4-color CGA! The Amiga had been around for a while why I bought mine; Long enough for me to buy a refurbished A500 from a commodore shop in north Kent/Tukwila, WA. Jason stayed overnight and we stayed up until the single digits of the morning building this circuit because I had not  yet saved enough money to buy the A 1084S monitor… the time had come.. my carpet sporting an extra burn mark from a soldering iron. I was 15 or 16 at the time and I usually soldered on the floor, there were already a number of burn marks by then. We powered up the circuit and plugged it into the Amiga and then my TV… Success! Well kind of.. everything was very purple but the output was perfectly usable. The start of my love affair with Amiga computers and a further solidification of my primary hobby; electronics.

I’m off to LA for some training this week. Hopefully I get some programming done on my projects. I brought a small “go bag” of electronics for out-of-town work. Hopefully the TSA doesn’t give me too much trouble. I’m sure a bag of electronics is a scary thing for those who don’t know what they’re looking at.

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