The conventional wisdom is that computer viruses can wipe out your data, but they can’t do physical damage. The exception to that rule was, of course, Commodore, the king of cheap 1980s computers. Commodore’s earliest computer, the PET, had an infamous “poke of death” (POKE 59458,62) that would destroy its video display, but the Commodore 64’s […]
Since questions occasionally come up, and I remember well what it was like owning a Commodore in the 1980s in the United States, I’ll share my recollections of it. It was very different from computing today. It was still interesting, but it was different.
Articles like Top 10 collectibles for value, from the Post-Dispatch this week, frequently make me nervous, mostly because of statements like this one: [D]id you know that computer parts can bring home cash, too? Statements like that tend to get people’s hopes up way too high. I find the timing interesting though, seeing as a […]
The smartest guy in the room cited the Commodore command LOAD “*”,8,1 as something he used for years but never understood why it worked. It will be a long time before I once again I know something technical that he doesn’t know, so I figured I’d better write it down. And just in case anyone […]
I’ve seen a couple of Commodore-related search queries hit lately, so I’m going to take a stroll down memory lane with two questions: Can you connect two computers to one single 1541 or 1571 disk drive? And what was the fastest Commodore modem?
It’s been many years since 5.25-inch floppy disks suitable for Commodore, Apple, Atari, and other vintage 8-bit computers (not to mention IBM PCs and PC/XTs) have been something you can buy at the store down the street. I found some 360K DS/DD disks on Amazon, but they aren’t available in huge quantities.
Exomizer is a compression program for Commodore and other 8-bit computers. The compressed program still runs, but it takes up less space on disk. Decompressing takes some time, but usually less time than reading more data off a 1541 disk. And unlike native compression tools which sometimes take all night to run, Exomizer runs on […]
So an upstart company has licensed the Commodore name and unveiled an updated C-64, which is essentially a nettop in a 64-alike case with a 64-like keyboard. Reactions are extreme. People either love it or hate it. I’d like to have one, but I’m not paying $595 for a nettop. But it should be possible […]
Connecting a single drive to a Commodore C-64, 128, or VIC-20 is pretty easy: Plug a 6-pin serial cable from the port on the back of the computer to one of the two ports on the back of the drive. It doesn’t matter which port you use. The second port is for “daisy chaining” additional […]
This week the usual sources were flooded with stories about how slow and bloated Openoffice is. I guess this came on the heels of the release of version 2.0; it’s never been much of a secret that Openoffice was big and slow. It’s descended from Staroffice, after all, and it was big and slow too.
Speedup tips ensued.