Eric's first memories of electronics began with a Dukes of Hazard wrist watch, "Light Bright" toy, calculator, and Tyco mini race car tracks.
The first significant history of Eric's ancestor interaction with technology dates back to around 1940 when Eric's grandfather, Rudolf Erler, on his mother's side build one of the world's first television sets, according to Eric's mother, Erika. Erika stated they were very proud of this TV as shown in this photo of Eric's grandmother, Lotte Erler. Rudolf also worked on and possibly built motorcycles, bicycles and sewing machines.
As a teen, Eric's mother dropped him off unsupervised at the local mall to play video games in an arcade. Eric was solicited for child porn by an old man, narrowly escaping being drugged and kidnapped in a camper parked just outside the arcade. At home, the family enjoyed playing Atari Ping and various games on Intellivision. In 1983 when the Internet was not, EricTalaska, then a child, was given a Commodore 64K computer for Christmas by his mother. Eric thought he was just about God being one of the first to have such a technological marvel in his hands. It didn't take him long though to figure out he couldn't do anything with it as there was no media (floppy) drive. But it was like magic to just touch it!
In 1983-84 Eric took a computer class in high school where he was taught how to do things such as create graphics ONE PIXEL AT A TIME as that was the way you did it back then. The classroom had a few Apple II computers with large 5.75" floppy drives.
Eric was assigned a female computer buddy who sent him one of the worlds (relatively) first "e-mails" on this computer, but it wasn't pretty as she was frustrated he didn't flirt with her. Today they are still friends and admitted he regrets not flirting with her.
Eric was made fun of extensively in that class, particularly because Eric said the power button should be on the front of the computer, not the back. Currently Eric faces a similar situation where he believes CD drives should have a CD inserted indicator that works when the PC is off. None do yet.
Electric Car. Sort of. Eric's parents bought an all electric golf cart they all enjoyed riding around a lot in the late 80's. Being 3-wheeled, it was very unstable, the range wasn't very good and it struggled to go uphill because it was very heavy with all those batteries. It was a blast though.
In 1987 Eric joined the Army right out of high school as a "single channel radio operator". Eric monitored the signals by looking at a tiny cathode ray screen that showed signals in green lines and forms. He installed and operated tele-typewriter, encryption and antenna equipment. Eric was granted a Top Secret, Special Intelligence security clearance to transmit, receive and handle sensitive classified information using this equipment.
The car Eric drove was a 1983 Volvo. He reengineered the radio so he could scan stations with a remote button mounted on the shifter. Nothing like that existed until years later and now it's standard on most steering wheels. Perhaps someone copied Eric's concept.
In 1990, Eric purchased a Smith Corona ribbon-printing word processor from Sears. As a Texarkana College student, he used it to create papers and to write for the student newspaper in 9/91. His classmates thought he was wealthy for owning such a state-of-the-art piece of office equipment. Sometimes he would carry the machine to class and be looked at very strangely. He was ahead of his time because of course now it's customary to take your laptop to class.
In 1991, Eric took a computer concepts class at Texarkana College. Eric wanted to start a computer manufacturing company and asked for family investing or support, but didn't get any of either.
Eric first learned about the Internet when he saw a Netscape browser at a college computer lab in 1992 at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. In 1993, Professor Robert Wicks introduced Eric to the Internet's functions such as Yahoo! and legal research (Lexis-Nexis). In October, 1993 Eric wrote a term paper "The Readability of Computer Modem Program Manuals". In May, 1995, Eric wrote his final independent research paper "The Future of Internet-Facilitated Communication" for professor Wicks. Since Eric still has this paper in his album, it may perhaps be placed in a museum or research archive due to the timing. In 1994, Eric interned for KFSM TV-5 in Fayetteville.
In 1995, Eric borrowed a Macintosh personal computer from a roommate in Raleigh, North Carolina to write resumes in order to land a job fresh out of college. Eric called it a "Lockintosh" because it locked up frequently and that was very frustrating.
Later in 1995, Eric was hired and trained by Nielsen Media Research to install television ratings equipment in consumer homes. He completed training, but didn't work for the company.
In 1996, Eric worked two months for Florentine Webworks (florentine.com) in Fayetteville, Arkansas for about $6.50 per hour. He worked as one of the Internet's first mass-marketing agents sending out fliers for website design. Wanting to learn more about the website design industry, the two owners taught him HTML coding. Eric became proficient at HTML by spending all his extra time and staying up so long learning it he got chronic insomnia.
Eric wanted his own domain name. Back then, domain names were only available through Network Solutions for around $125 each per year plus $50 per month for hosting was required. This was unaffordable for Eric, so asked the owners of Florentine if he could be provided one for free. They agreed. Eric decided on "SkateBrake.com" for his invention. He could have chosen many others that would be worth a fortune just a few years later, but back then .net was very popular and nobody had a clue .com would be king forever. Eric developed skatebrake.com as relatively one of the first Internet websites. This was very difficult to do back then because HTML coding software was quirky.
The owners of Florentine were video game software developers. With this timing and the skills of these three innovators, any one or all of the Florentine team could have very well become among the first Internet millionaire or billionaire sensations. But you know they say close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.
In 1994, the family purchased a made in U.S.A. Dell PC system equipped with Windows 3.1, the first Windows OS and a dot matrix printer. Back then, "Made in USA" meant a great deal more than today obviously. Dial-up Internet was still rare, so he didn't use it for that, but for productivity and to learn office programs. This was the first traditional PC in the family. At this time, owning your own PC was a new concept and expensive.
Eric used it to piddle with and his father, Leo frequently criticized him for spending too much time on it, but ironically as we see later, Leo was hooked too.
Eric used this computer to write his patent application pro se from his parent's home in Ashdown, Arkansas. This involved over a month of intensive writing and computer aided drawing. The patent was filed in April, 1996.
Later that year, a dentist, Steve Pere, from Orlando, Florida contacted Eric about his brake invention as he was very interested in assisting with marketing. Eric flew to Orlando to stay at Steve's place while they collaborate ideas. They decided to make videos of the brake in action and post the videos on the Internet. At this time, this was technically challenging and rare; therefore were among the first to post online videos of any type. There was no place to "post" videos; we had to do it ourselves on our server.
In 1998, Eric lived in Dallas, Texas. He purchased a big Sprint PCS cell phone. Eric ended up completely rebuilding the family Dell computer it due to upgrades. Eric used that rebuilt Dell to be among the new AOL community, register a website with search engines, etc. His second website URL, under "AOL Hometown" was: http://members.aol.com/controlit1/index.html
At one time Eric had a prominent inline skate information website with a very impressive amount of visitors around the world, but he lost his search engine position when he moved because his website was "piggy backing" off of his ISP's domain.: http://home.swbell.net/inliner/a.html This was the most successful website Eric ever had, even more so than anything today. He used to receive a dozen "legitimate" emails from people around the world interested in his site. This is hard to accomplish today. This is because the ratio of Internet users vs. websites is substantially different now. Back when Eric had his little piggyback URL, it was relatively among one of the first websites on the Internet. To clarify, many multi-million dollar companies didn't even have a website or even a domain name yet. Even though fewer people were on the Internet back then, if you had a website, it didn't have to compete against billions or perhaps trillions of other webpages for search engine results as is the case today.
Eric worked diligently at his computer on a dial up connection looking for an ideal domain name to start a new business with. He spotted headlinenews.com, orderproducts.com and many others available, but thought they were too long. In July of 1998 while Listening to Paul McCartney's song "With a Little Luck", he heard the phrase "There is no end to what we can do together" which gave Eric the idea "how about NoEnd.com?" It was available, so Eric bought it and designed various websites on it with a focus on marketing his brake invention.
RidePride.com for mountain biking.
Eric used the world's first mainstream voice chat through Yahoo! to speak with someone in the UK. They were both very amazed. Eric used AOL chat to learn about and meet women around the country. Back then there was little record of any danger of doing so, therefore women were not afraid; Eric called these the golden days of being online. Eric recalls having very good conversations online and meeting interesting people until the early 2000's when the Internet began to be a much more fearful and disrespected place to meet people.
In late 1998, Eric lived near Washington, D.C. to work for a patent law firm. Eric was involved with Internet marketing of patent products. This is when Eric learned advanced web design skills such as animation and Flash.
In 1999, Eric found his first customer to do website design for. It was for the inventor of the "Star Gazer", a night telescope system. Eric continued developing website design skills and serving a few more clients, but not enough to get far ahead.
From late 1999 to mid 2000, Eric worked for HP supporting their full line of laptop computers, docking stations and Windows 98. At that time, laptops were mostly owned by the affluent, so those are the kind of people Eric talked with. As you can imagine, this was a very challenging job to support quirky laptops equipped with quirky Windows 98 all over the phone, that is to say, without being able to physically see or do anything - like doing something blind. This inevitably led to customers becoming irate and having to deal with that.
Remember when Eric was criticized by his father for spending too much time on the computer? Eric's father Leo was criticized for spending too much time on his HP desktop with Windows 98 he purchased one Black Friday from Walmart. Leo used it for hours daily to buy collectibles on eBay. Leo's eBay buying spree of antique lures, more "blackjack" stamps, coins, domain names, newspapers and Barry Bonds baseball cards lasted from around 2000 to 2008. Leo had accumulated so much excess items, Eric had the duty to get rid of it on eBay from 2000 to 2001. Instead of charging a commission, he made a deal to make up for the little bit of help he received to go to college in Fayetteville.
During the giddy .com boom in 2000, Eric sold VRTherapy.com for $2,500, MolecularRobotics.com for $1,800. He sold LawyerGroup.com for $750 and sold noend.com and his eBay account "noend" that had 500 positive feedbacks (from selling Leo's excess) for $5,500 to someone in Venezuela. This is the largest amount Eric has sold a domain for yet. The buyer never did anything with it. Other domains Eric bought and or sold include: InternetAccess.org, replications.com, sk8s.com, u1t.com (you want), zevs.com, hevs.com, pd4.com, o24h, o7d, 4m8. Eric and Leo purchased at least 100 domains in hope to resell later. They even got Erika to invest in one: LetsCook.com that she sold for $800 in 2001. Eric developed e-commerce and published some of the first videos on the Internet in 2001
Due to the annual renewal fees adding up to a lot, they dropped almost all of the domains and were a victim of the "www.new.net" scam. Eric very rarely attempted to cyber squat anything, but one time did register LenseExpress.com and received a lot of LensExpress.com customer emails. He handed the domain over without fee or issue. He had the opportunity to squat a lot of times, but declined.
Around 2001, Eric purchased some of the first available GPS devices used for outdoor activities.
In March, 2002, Eric felt like a 3-letter .com would be better to replace noend.com. This would make website design much easier (much less typing). He also knew it would be a wise investment since the three letter .coms were getting hot. So he spent many hours, day after day, monitoring various domain resale sites and eBay looking for an affordable 3-letter .com. Finally, he saw qwj.com on eBay with a low starting bid. Ultimately, Eric won the auction with a high bid of only $180. That was a lot of money to Eric back then. He wanted to purchase memo.com for about $3,000 and pd.com for $10,000, but Eric didn't have that kind of extra money and couldn't convince family to share in the investment.
In March, 2003, Eric quit his job as a toxic tort paralegal in Texas and opened a computer & repair store in Murfreesboro, Arkansas. This small town and flexible work schedule allowed Eric to reduce stress and be healthier working from home. In 2005, he spent a lot of time researching health and became a health expert while still gaining computer skills.
Eric rewired 90% of the building, installed Cat 5 cable in every room and installed a hard wired sophisticated four camera DVR Internet capable alarm system. Most of this involved dangerous, toxic and hot work in the attic.
Eric's professional services included computer repair, support, tutoring, custom built computers, website design, eBay listings, etc. He also offered an Internet hotspot which quickly became obsolete as the nearby hotels caught on.
Eric wanted to open a health food & product store or an eco museum, but know the demand was too low in that unprogressive area.
In late 2008, Eric sold his building and moved back to Ashdown, Arkansas.
Since selling his building in Arkansas, Eric decided to concentrate on using his Internet and computer skills to promote environmentalism by forming EcoWhale.com. "There will be no technology without an environment".
In March, 2009, Eric purchased a 2007 Toyota Prius (the closest to an electric car available on the market at that time).
Eric moved to Colorado in May, 2010 where he bought land and installed 200 amp underground electrical service on his own. This was a learning experience and it took him about 30 trips to the hardware store to complete. He failed the first state inspection which is notorious for flunking anyone trying to do this under a homeowners permit and so they can collect another inspection fee. The fail reasons were bogus such as "too much antioxidant" used. He passed the second time.
In January, 2011 Eric worked on developing social media site listings. After doing the best he could, he realized it's not anything like it used to be. It's much harder than ever to get noticed or market on the Internet because it's flooded with too many spammers for one thing. Although discouraged by this, he still strives to provide website design and marketing services to clients, preferably eco related.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Eric Talaska 904 N Washington Ave Murfreesboro, AR 71958 Phone: 870-285-2345 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Want better luck? An eBay auction item number ending in 777 to sell up to 777 “Certificates Of Luck” on 07-07-07
Murfreesboro, AR -- June 28, 2007 – There's a lucky kind of item for sale on the eBay.com online auction site. Eric Talaska of Murfreesboro, Arkansas listed 777 Certificates of Luck, guaranteeing winning bidders a lifetime of luck. Eric claims he can wish luck on other people and have it come true. He says he taps into our collective consciousness to make that happen which uses a kind of physics we do not yet understand. On the other hand, Eric says bad things happen to people who do him wrong, but he isn't going to sell bad luck and doesn't wish it on anyone, it just happens on its own.
Upon submitting the item for listing, Eric noticed eBay “randomly” assigned the auction a number ending in the ultimate lucky 777. That got Eric excited enough to have the item featured on eBay.
To keep the auction in as good of spirits as possible, a portion of winning bids will be donated to Alliance for Climate Protection, a charity organization geared towards solving the world's climate crisis, which Eric believes will take some luck to accomplish.
CONTACT: Eric Talaska, eBalcony.com, LLC, 904 N. Washington Ave., Murfreesboro, AR 71958; (870) 285-2075 or (903) 563-4063
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Man Opens Businesses for Local Economy and for Tourist Economy in One Building He Dedicates to His Grandfather Captured in War
Murfreesboro, Arkansas, November 19,2004 - Two new businesses will open in Murfreesboro the day after Thanksgiving this year in one building. The building is diagonally north across from EZ-Mart and used to be Jo-Mac’s. Now it is called eBalcony.com, LLC and will be a computer repair shop in one section and an antique shop in another section. Consignment or booth space for quality antiques is available and welcome.
The owner, Eric Talaska moved to the area earlier this year and worked hard to renovate the old building. Eric often gets asked why he moved to Murfreesboro. He says the main reason is low cost of living and doing business. The hardest thing Eric says is being single in this area.
Eric invites anyone with computer problems to stop by and anyone with good antiques or collectibles to sell them in his shop on consignment. The most interesting item for sale Eric says is the first known internet software. He says it is an extremely rare collectible, dating back to 1983. Although the focus of the antique shop is good quality antiques, other categories are sold such as sporting goods & lures, collectibles, crafts, jewelry, etc. “I figured I would need to have one business for the local economy (computer repair) and another for tourists (antique shop) to do well here” Eric said.
Eric dedicates his business to his grandfather, Rudolf Erler from his mother’s side who he has never seen. Rudolf was also a business owner, but in former East Germany where he was captured in WWII at around the age Eric is today. Eric’s mother, Erika says Rudolf had his own business and when the Russians invaded, they destroyed it and captured Rudolf. Eric says other interesting items in the antique shop include things his mother brought over from Germany. “I’m also glad my mother is a part of the business too” Eric said.
Eric’s business joined the Murfreesboro Chamber of Commerce. When he attended a banquet recently, he was happy to see other businesses have been improving too. “I’m happy to see that there are other businesses improving significantly in this town other than my own. This will be good for all of us”.
Eric is a 1995 graduate of the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and has lived in many cities around the country. He has tried several different career paths and turned down going to law school to start his own business. “For the very high price of law school, one could open their own business if they desire for the same price and effort. I figured we don’t really need more lawyers anyway”, Eric said.
Other projects Eric works on include a non-profit informational website, NutritionAll.com, designed to educate the public about how we are supposed to eat for optimum health. Eric has plans to start another website, YourMarketer.com, geared towards helping inventors market their new ideas or inventions on the Internet whether or not they have a patent.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Father & Son in Front of the Line to Register Internet’s Best Addresses
ASHDOWN, AR. March 10, 2001. Leo and Eric Talaska were in the front of the line to register several of the best Internet domain names since the .com was first introduced in the 1980s. The names include “go.shop, 4.free, e.sport, for.kids, the.law, etc.” The names were purchased on Marth the 5th from new.net, a new startup company ventured right after ICANN announced they will delay any new TLDs (top-level domains) such as .biz and .info. The delay of new TLDs has been ongoing for seven years.
The Talaska’s plan on developing some of their domains, but in the meantime will put them up for resale. We got “religious.club” to either donate to a church or to resell and use all of the proceeds for charity.
The Talaska’s have also registered many other ".com domain names" to develop and or sell. “Sales of the .com domains have been terrible this year, so I’m trying something new” Eric said.
Anyone can purchase the new domains by logging on to www.new.net. The Talaskas said there are still plenty of good domains left to register.
CONTACT: Eric Talaska, e-mail: email@example.com, Phone: (870) 898-2328,