I watched a video from The 8-Bit Guy on YouTube just now about assembling a "replica" of an Apple-1 computer, and it just reinforces my desire to get some sort of retro tech for my apartment. Or, in my life - not necessarily for my apartment. And I have been looking at, and pricing, old CCTV monitors on Etsy, which are basically old school security monitors one would use with a security camera, because they always seem to have the correct connections in the back for an old piece of "retro tech", as I call it. Or even a replica computer.
Of course, I don't want to necessarily build some piece of hardware, and other than MAYBE a solder-less kit, I don't want to assemble one, either. What I want, is a budget computer that can run old operating systems, similar to the Commander 64 (which is made by the same guy I mentioned earlier, if I am not mistaken). Or, I could always go out an BUY (for a fair deal of money, I would imagine) and authentic Commodore 64.
Basically, I want a small, unobtrusive machine, that is very basic, and that runs BASIC! But I am apprehensive about getting another Raspberry Pi, because I had a RPi 3, 3 Model B (two of those), and RPi 4 (I think, the one with upgraded RAM and w/o the keyboard) - but, those ALL fried themselves in a matter of months. So, I want something a bit more... something.
Also, I want this machine to LOOK good, as old tech can look like dusty garbage if not taken care of properly. And I would also have to think of a practical purpose for it. I wouldn't just get a thing TO get a thing - there has to be some utility for it. The obvious answer is "for writing", but I already do a bunch of that online, which I don't plan on stopping, and also I have proper (modern) text editors for writing stuff I don't want to put online, or that I want to edit properly and put online later.
Yes, there are old games, and that could be neat, as well - but, I am not a heavy gamer to begin with of either modern or old games, so that is not really a selling (or buying) point, either.
In the end, I am probably more inspired by/interested in NEW computers that do MORE than OLD computers that do LESS. And I can understand the "distraction-free/minimalist" element to going with a retro machine, but, I can (and do!) turn off notifications on all of my devices 24/7 anyway. Other than Signal texts and phone calls, I don't GET notifications - I even have them turned off for ProtonMail, and I tend to only check e-mail on my laptop, and don't look at the app very much on my phone. Browser notifications are turned off, as well - so unless a human is trying to immediately reach me, I don't fret over some thing distracting me from whatever it is I am doing/writing.
Anyway, this is how I feel. For the moment.