Hand-Holding: The First Retailers

We didn’t want to sell Altairs. We wanted to solve problems.

–Dick Heiser, computer retailer

The first personal-computer store appeared not long after the Altair announcement. Its origin had very little to do with the usual motives or starting a retail business.

The First Personal-Computer Store

On June 15, 1975, 125 hobbyists and computer novices gathered in the recreation room of the Laurel Tree Apartments in Miraleste, California. Digital engineer Don Tarbell and computer neophyte Judge Pearce Young had brought them together to form the Southern California Computer Society. The participants engaged in a lively debate over the structure and purpose of the club. At one point, someone asked for a showing ...

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