The picture below, taken in 2003, leaves out an important element — a computer, which is just out of the frame to the right of the image of my son Tom and grandson Garrett.  I remember taking this photo all those years ago, and I remember that the subject of Garrett and Tom’s conversation had something to do with that just-out-of-sight computer.

I’ve been reading a book, “Coders“, by Clive Thompson, which describes the people who write the code for computers. Both Tom and I were coders, although we didn’t use that word to describe ourselves at the time. Instead we used the term computer programmers. We both learned to program computers at the same time. We used a computer language called BASIC, which was the first computer language many coders, or programmers, learned at that point in history. Garrett is also a coder, but of a newer and much more sophisticated generation. So, coding is something the three of us have in common, although it’s definitely something that has changed a lot in the years since Tom and I were using BASIC on our Timex Sinclair computers back in the 1980s.

In the years since that picture was taken, Garrett has grown up — his 21st birthday is coming up later this month. Happy birthday, Garrett, and may you have many more happy birthdays in the years ahead.











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