Kids these days will never appreciate how good they have it. Smartphones with built-in computers? Bah, back in the day we had to be content with clunky boxes, big screens, and a wad of wires. Even then our computers wouldn’t connect to ‘World Wide Web’ without a dial-up connection. Ah, the good ol’ days, right?
While we can’t bring’em back, artist and designer Rocky Bergen has made something easier for kids and (kids-at-heart) to enjoy. Using the wonders of modern computers, he has made a variety of papercraft models featuring old computers, game consoles, and many other old pieces of technology.
These models, which feature the likes of the Apple II, Atari 520 ST, Nintendo GameCube, and most importantly, a Conion C-100F boombox are available as a PDF format and completely free.
All you have to do is download the files from Bergen’s website, print them on some thick paper, and you’re ready to go. Of course, I left out the parts where you have to cut, fold, and glue the individual pieces together, but I’ll leave that up to you.
One neat little trick Bergen has implemented with the computers is the inclusion of swappable screens. Should you get tired of the Amiga Workbench on your papercraft Amiga 500 for instance, you can swap it out for a knock-off version of Super Mario Bros. or a point-and-click adventure game.
What’s great is how Bergen manages to squeeze in his personal life to each piece of tech. Clicking each link doesn’t immediately open the PDF file, but sends you on a trip down Bergen’s memories where he recounts his time with the real thing. And even if he never had the gadget, he always makes time to comment on its make and design.
Here’s an excerpt from his Apple II papercraft:
Growing up, the only game I ever played on the Apple II is Oregon Trail because that was the only game our school had. I was already pretty obsessed with computers and always hungry for more exposure. Thankfully the Internet happened and now I can experience this machine in a multitude of ways, which happens to include creating and sharing this papercraft pattern.
Only after you’ve gone through this sweet and touching experience will you find the link to the PDF file at the bottom of the webpage. Just as you would find a link to his papercraft files here; at the bottom of this webpage.
Maybe working on these papercraft models will give the young’uns a better appreciation of old school technology. If they can be bothered to get off their smartphones, that is.