Driving back to the office this afternoon I got to wondering - how did you first become involved with our forum?
I'm not asking when, but how - what first brought you to the PCA site, was it because you read about it in the magazine, heard about it from someone, or did you come here as a result of a Google search, or a link on another web-site? Perhaps you can't remember, it was so long ago?
If you can remember I would like to hear about it. I'm also interested to discover how many women take part in forum activities, but I do not in any way want to intrude on anyone's right to privacy - obviously there's no need to tell me if you would rather not; It's simply a matter of personal interest on my part.
I joined in November 2002 (with a different username) which was probably just after I'd bought a new PC and was looking for advice on setting up and using WinXP. I'd been buying PCA since it first came out (96, 97?) and probably saw a reference to the forum in there. I'm pretty certain it was the first forum I joined.
Here's one of my early posts which has me reformatting for the new cable broadband that I've just has put in. I wouldn't need to ask this now, the PCA help forum has done me good service over the years.
I first came to this site because after getting one of my first ever computers I realised that I knew nothing about them, a friend had recommended your mag as a way to try and understand the workings of a computer and after reading that mag I came to this site.
At the time the best bit of money I had invested in a magazine, it made me realise that a PC was not some mystical box but a bunch Lego parts any body can put together and with the help of this site you can make it work.
Been here a long time and looking back have to thank Gateway Computers for selling me a bunch of crap that never worked properly from day one with a "technical helpline" that was even worse.
Theres a saying that theres always a plus side to every thing.
Exactly ten and a half years ago, today I believe, I stumbled upon the PCA website and I've been here ever since. I was on dial-up then but nevertheless determined to gain some knowledge of this here computing lark.
I've learned much over this happy period and had real satisfaction when helping out where I could. Unfortunately these days I have to write down or print out information in order to retain most of it - can't trust the old memory banks too much now, I'm afraid! :o)
Reading through this thread it is good to see many members from the past appearing again, and I hope they will continue to do so. TC.
I came to the forums through subscribing to PCA 7+ years ago. I had a problem, signed up, asked in Helproom, and got the solution in minutes!
Since then, I've found the forums invaluable - indispensable - on a (very) few occasions not getting an answer - but always finding folk friendly, knowledgable, patient and ever willing to explain and help - not least our good FE himself! I've recommened PCA and the forums to umpteen friends etc!
I wouldn't want to be without either the magazine or the forums!