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04-10-2012, 03:14 AM   #1
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Jack Tramiel, the father of Commodore 64 dies

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... In 1982, Commodore International launched the Commodore 64, which went on to the best-selling personal computer of all time. In 1984, after being forced to leave the company he founded, Jack bought the crumbling Atari Inc.’s Consumer Division and formed Atari Corporation.

“Jack Tramiel was an immense influence in the consumer electronics and computing industries. A name once uttered in the same vein as Steve Jobs is today, his journey from concentration camp survivor to captain of industry is the stuff of legends,” says Martin Goldberg, a writer working on a book about the Atari brand and the early days of video games and computing with Atari Museum founder Curt Vendel.

“His legacy are the generations upon generations of computer scientists, engineers, and gamers who had their first exposure to high technology because of his affordable computers – ‘for the masses and not the classes.’”
...
Computer Legend and Gaming Pioneer Jack Tramiel Dies at Age 83 - Forbes

04-10-2012, 03:22 AM   #2
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Ah, I really loved my C64! Brings back good memories...
04-10-2012, 09:33 AM   #3
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I started out with a Vic-20, also a Commodore. They were the first really affordable home computers that were actually something you could make useful. While the press always talks about Jobs and Gates as the pioneers of computing, it was Jack Tramiel who was responsible for putting computers in most households.
04-10-2012, 10:09 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by reeftool Quote
I started out with a Vic-20, also a Commodore. They were the first really affordable home computers that were actually something you could make useful. While the press always talks about Jobs and Gates as the pioneers of computing, it was Jack Tramiel who was responsible for putting computers in most households.
He was also a terrible businessman. He started the "home computer wars" and put TI and Coleco out of business. He almost put Commodore out of business before being forced out, then bought Atari and ran what was left into the ground.

He never really innovated anything except undercutting other companies prices. Cheaper typewriters than IBM, until the Japanese came along and undercut him, cheaper calculators than HP or TI, cheaper home computers than anybody but Tandy...

Commodore sold 22 million C64s, but they didn't really make any money.

The ST was an interesting computer for musicians (built in MIDI controller), but the Mac had a better interface and the Amiga had Video Toaster.

04-10-2012, 10:18 PM   #5
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I think Coleco put themselves out of business. The Commodore 64 worked. The Adam didn't. They raked in millions with the Cabbage Patch dolls but went belly up anyhow. I think both companies are textbook examples of how not to run a business. Out of all the companies that built and sold computers in the early days, only a handful still survive.
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