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“On The Media” revisits a BBS “ghost town”

As a journalist, I listen regularly to NPR’s On The Media program. Imagine my surprise and delight when a fellow journalist sent me a link to OTM’s TLDR podcast from yesterday in which one of the program’s producers revisits his old BBS stomping grounds.

The board was M-net, a large chat system that’s still running today — though nothing like it was in its heyday.

Please give this segment a listen, and be sure to let OTM know you appreciate their coverage of this important tech history topic!

Via OTM

The Commodore 64

Although I was raised on a steady diet of Atari growing up, I did use other machines over the years at school. For example, I remember using a Commodore 64 in kindergarten, and learning to work in LogoWriter on the 64 in third or fourth grade.

I came across this wonderful blog post from the Digital Antiquarian about the creation of the Commodore 64. Great read.

I love this passage about Jack Tramiel, who later went to save (and wreck) Atari:

“In January of 1981 some of the engineers at Commodore’s chipmaking subsidiary, MOS Technologies, found themselves without a whole lot to do.

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… Ideally they would have been working on a 16-bit replacement for the 6502, but Jack Tramiel was uninterested in funding such an expensive and complicated project, a choice that stands as amongst the stupidest of a veritable encyclopedia of stupidity written by Commodore management over the company’s chaotic life.”