10 PRINT “Happy Birthday C-64”

It is the 25th anniversary of the Commodore 64. Happy Birthday you big, beautiful, plastic brick-like thing. Happy Birthday to you! It has been a friend, a mentor, dare I say a lover? The memories of youth lost in the darkness of my room , eye’s watery from late nights in front of a keyboard banging out some of the most useless programming to ever escape from a human brain (Vista excluded). The long weekends transfixed by the overwhelming bad-assness of text-based gaming..

You are in a room, it is dark, there is a large wooden chest in the corner and two doors on the opposite side of the chest, what do you do?

> open chest

do not understand open

> goto chest

do not understand goto

> turn right

Do not understand turn

> throw flaming bag of poo on chest

The chest is on fire…

The Computer History Museum (here) in Mountain View will be celebrating the introduction of the greatest selling single computer model of all time today at 6pm (here). the speakers include Adam Chowaniec, Chairman of the Board, Liquid Computing, William C. Lowe, Chief Executive Officer and President, NEPS, Jack Tramiel, Founder and CEO, Commodore International, Steve Wozniak, Co-Founder, Apple Computer, and Moderator, John Markoff, New York Times Journalist

ABSTRACT OF TALK
The Commodore 64 was an 8-bit home computer released by Commodore International in August, 1982, and during it’s lifetime (between 1982 and 1994), sales totaled close to 17 million units, making it the best-selling single personal computer model of all time. Approximately 10,000 commercial software titles were developed for the Commodore 64 including development tools, office applications, and games.

The C64 made an impressive debut at the 1982 Winter Consumer Electronics Show, as recalled by Production Engineer David A. Ziembicki: All we saw at our booth were Atari people with their mouths dropping open, saying, ‘How can you do that for $595?’

The term personal computer was a common term in the early 80’s and was used as early as 1972 to characterize Xerox PARC’s Alto. During this era of microcomputer innovation, the market was dominated by the IBM Personal Computer (IBM PC), the Commodore 64, the Atari 8-bit family, the Apple II, Tandy Corporation’s TRS-80s, and various CP/M machines.

Although the history of the Commodore is rich, the histories of the people and the companies that developed these early personal computers are also critical to the personal productivity tools and business solutions we often take for granted in our daily lives.

Join us for a well-deserved celebration of this historic demonstration that spawned a tremendous market for home, small business, distributed and networked technology uses. These technology advances provided a foundation for many companies and technologies driving the Internet, wireless, social networking and other innovative technologies underway.

We thank our panelists in advance for providing recollections and perspectives from their early experiences and welcome their stories from a time that produced the foundation of our current technological society.

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4 thoughts on “10 PRINT “Happy Birthday C-64”

  1. I was lucky enough to be there, flying in all the way from Miami, Florida, to hear the presentation. It was nothing short of a religious experience seeing, and meeting, Jack.

  2. Too young to remember the commadore 64.

    But does anyone remember the ZX Spectrum?

    That was my first computer years , and years ago. You had t o load all software with what we now use for cassette tapes. Cannot recall how many years ago this was but it was all the rage then!

  3. ZX Spectrum? Sure thing 🙂 How about the ZX81 with a whopping 16KB of extra RAM if memory serves me well (no pun intended)?

    I clearly remember my six year younger cousin creating software for this thing. Later on I bought a C64. Still have it, but not using it anymore. Indeed loading from cassette first. Then speedloaders came along with higher baud rate. Dabbled with creating text Adventure games myself, and thus loved the introduction of this blog entry LOL.

    Those were the days…

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