All posts tagged commodore

The trade off of fidelity and convenience in marketing, and how it doomed my favorite company

I’m reading a book called Trade-Off, by former USA Today technology columnist Kevin Maney. It’s primarily a marketing book. Maney argues that all products are a balance of fidelity and convenience, and highly favor one or the other. He additionally argues that failed products fail because they attempted to achieve both, or failed to focus […]

Getting past your own biases

I read Andy Grove’s Only the Paranoid Survive last week. I always figured it was an autobiography or memoir, not a business book. But it’s a business book.  A very good one. I avoided it because I didn’t like Andy Grove. I’ve never been a fan of Intel’s business practices during the 1990s and 2000s, […]

The Post-Dispatch may be giving the wrong idea about the dollar value of vintage computers

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 […]

Happy 30th birthday, PCjr!

It’s the Mac’s 30th birthday. Everyone knows that, unless they’ve been under a rock. But I don’t think anyone would hold it against you if you didn’t know it’s also the IBM PCjr’s 30th birthday. The PCjr is one of the biggest flops in computing history. Few people know much more about it than that.

Sculley on Jobs

John Sculley famously fired Steve Jobs in 1985, a move that’s pretty universally panned today. This week, someone asked Sculley about it. Here’s the money quote: “He was not a great executive back in those early days. The great Steve Jobs that we know today as maybe the world’s greatest CEO, certainly of our era, he […]

What LOAD “*”,8,1 means

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 […]

What I miss about the old days of computing

Lifehacker asked this week what graybeards like me (mine gets longer every week) miss about old-school computing. I don’t think it’s any single thing.

Rest in peace, PC World

The print edition of PC World is no more, and its demise marks the end of the general-interest computer magazine. Former editor Harry McCracken wrote this tribute.

It’s the end of SSDs as we know it, and I feel fine

Flash memory’s days may be numbered. The end of the line for traditional flash memory has been predicted for a long time, and gloated about by Luddites who are dead-set against buying SSDs for whatever reason. But I’m not worried about it. All I want is solid-state storage; I don’t care about the underlying technology. […]

Thanks for the memories, Altavista

For as long as I can remember, my home page has been about:blank. But for a good chunk of the 1990s, I would have done well to set it to altavista.digital.com. Most people remember Altavista as the thing people used before Google, if they remember it at all. But I remember it as the first […]