There were four major revisions of the Amiga 500 motherboard released, and that matters if you are trying to upgrade them. Fortunately, if you know what to look for, you can quickly distinguish between all four, and you can even identify them without opening the case. Although it is certainly easier to identify them if you can see the entire board.
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When looking at the contrast between the Atari 2600 and Colecovision launch titles, Mattel’s initial lineup of four Intellivision launch titles gives some insight into their thinking. Since they had to build a new market, they produced a mix of two traditional games, an action/combat video game, and an educational title in an effort to appeal to a fairly broad audience. Not to mention each title competed directly with a title in Atari’s library.
Digg was a high flying news aggregation site from the early web 2.0 era that still exists today, but really in name only. It serves as a cautionary too for why high profile websites tend not to make major changes overnight. A major update, Digg v4, caused the site to implode over the course of about 6 weeks during the late summer of 2010. A certain tech CEO would do well to read up on it lest he repeat history.
Digg went from concept to being worth $200 million in about three years and was more popular than Reddit, which is now a $15 billion company. One ill fated change wiped out 90% of its value and its user base in a matter of six weeks.
The Commodore 64 was the most popular computer of the 8-bit era, and I will argue that the Atari 800 was the most underrated computer of the 8-bit era. Ironically, some of the key designers from each system ended up changing companies when the time came to design successors to these two products, so they are forever intertwined. How did these two systems stack up? Let’s look at the Atari 800 vs Commodore 64.
In 1982, Coleco dropped a bomb on the game console industry. Atari led the industry in sales, with Mattel, the toy maker, taking the number two spot with a slightly more advanced console called the Intellivision that enjoyed reasonable if modest success. Then Coleco came along with its own high-end console. One of Coleco’s gimmicks was an expansion module to make its console compatible with the Atari console, immediately making it have more cartridges than anyone else. Mattel decided to counter.
The Mattel System Changer was essentially the equivalent of the Coleco Expansion Module 1, just for a different console. The function is the same, but the outcome was a bit different.
The Coleco Vision launched in July 1982, and made a relatively big splash, selling about 2 million units, largely on the strength of its launch titles. Here’s a list of Colecovision launch titles along with notes about each game.
The strategy behind the Colecovision launch titles is pretty clear. Noting that the most popular Atari 2600 titles were ports of arcade hits, Coleco aggressively licensed arcade titles, starting with acquiring a license for Donkey Kong before it was even released in the United States. Of the remaining launch titles, only Smurf: Rescue in Gargamel’s Castle was not an arcade port.
The Commodore 64 is the best selling computer of all time. Depending on who you ask, it sold 17 million, 20 million, or 12 million units. And the generally accepted sales figure for the Commodore 128 is 4.5 million units. Who is correct? How many Commodore 64s and Commodore 128s sold?
The commonly repeated figures of 17 million Commodore 64s and 4.5 million Commodore 128s don’t line up with Commodore’s own annual reports and other internal sales documents. The primary sources indicate Commodore sold about 12.3 million Commodore 64s and 128s between 1982 and 1993.
The NES launch titles were the 18 games released alongside the Nintendo Entertainment System during its North American launch on October 18, 1985. All of the launch titles belong to the Black Box series of games. The lineup was something of a mixed bag, but it was carefully balanced for a tepid American market.
When the NES launched, there were eighteen games available for it, a line-up that included four sports games, three light gun games, two ROB games, two racing games, an edutainment title, and six other miscellaneous games. Many of them were conversions from arcade titles, which is unsurprising since arcade games were Nintendo’s core business at the time.
Youtuber Dave Plummer made an interesting argument in his PET 2001 repair video. He said he wants the date codes on his chips to match as closely as possible, arguing that it matters to vintage car enthusiasts, so it’s going to matter in the future on vintage computers too.
He has a point.