Breakout: How Atari 8-Bit Computers Defined a Generation by Jamie Lendino

By Jamie Lendino

Atari 8-bit pcs are the 1st machines that actually bridged the divide among game avid gamers and residential desktop fans. The Atari four hundred and 800 signaled the beginning of a brand new period in computing. Breakout: How Atari 8-Bit desktops outlined a Generation is the 1st e-book to hide what made Atari's groundbreaking desktop line nice: its very good images and sound, versatile programming atmosphere, and vast help from the burgeoning domestic computing device neighborhood.

For these folks coming of "gaming age" within the 80s, Atari video games have been easily amazing—and you will find out what remodeled a hundred titles a lot enjoyable to play. Breakout additionally explores the Atari 8-bit platform because it stands this present day, with a powerful fanatic and modding group, the expanding price of Atari pcs and peripherals, and the way to start with one now or get your previous one operating back.

Jamie Lendino is the Editor-in-Chief of ExtremeTech.com. formerly, he controlled the patron electronics reports staff for PCMag.com, and has written for the print and electronic models of PC Magazine for over 10 years. he is additionally had articles released in Popular technological know-how, digital Musician, Sound and Vision, and on CNET.com and ConsumerReports.com.

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It was similar in complexity to QDOS, the OS that Microsoft licensed a couple of years later, renamed MS-DOS, and sold for the IBM PC. ”[12] Next, Atari needed a BASIC for the computer. [13] The way Atari got there is fantastic in retrospect. “A funny story from this time that Al Miller likes to tell has to do with the Atari BASIC cartridge that was to ship with the system,” Crane said. “Atari had contracted with a young programmer named Bill Gates to modify a BASIC compiler that he had for another system to be used on the 800.

At first glance, it’s obvious the keyboard was a huge improvement over the 400’s, thanks to its design and cleaner layout. Much has been said about the way Atari played a little fast and loose with manufacturing techniques throughout the run of a particular piece of hardware. One of the consequences of this approach was keyboard feel, which you can easily test today by trying several 800s—it’s almost guaranteed each one will type a little bit differently. Despite the variances in quality between individual keyboards, every 800 I’ve typed on over the years has been comfortable.

Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak released the Apple II in June 1977. The brilliance of the Apple II’s design, which was based on that of the Apple I, can’t be overstated. Wozniak knew how to get as few chips as possible to do as much as possible, while Steve Jobs ensured the machine was wrapped in friendly, stylish packaging. The Apple II contained a 1MHz MOS 6502 and 4KB of RAM. Like the TRS-80 and Commodore PET, the Apple II output to a 40-by-24-character display, but unlike those machines, the Apple II also displayed color.

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