Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 1st Aug 2012 22:45 UTC, submitted by MOS6510
Hardware, Embedded Systems "It is 30 years since the Commodore 64 went on sale to the public. The machine was hugely successful for its time, helping to encourage personal computing, popularise video games and pioneer homemade computer-created music. [...] BBC News invited Commodore enthusiast Mat Allen to show schoolchildren his carefully preserved computer, at a primary school and secondary school in London."
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Habituation
by Hypnos on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 02:08 UTC
Hypnos
Member since:
2008-11-19

The kids were being polite.

Having grown up with computers and computer-like devices all their lives, you can't expect them to understand the sense of amazement we Gen Xers experienced back in the 80s.

It's like our grandparents and airplanes.

Reply Score: 5

Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 05:13 UTC
MOS6510
Member since:
2011-05-12

The C64 was great, but I could have been much better. Of course you could add stuff or upgrade components, but that would have added to the cost. So without increasing the price I think these changes would have made the C64 the undisputed king during the 8 bit era:

* Its chips (video and sound) were great, but they could not be accessed from BASIC without POKEing. Apart from that its BASIC wasn't very good, being almost the same as the VIC-20. Not everybody likes Simon's BASIC, but it would have been an improvement and provide a way to do video and sound stuff from BASIC.

* Fix the bug preventing fast disk access! Disk access was very slow compared to other systems. Fastloaders proved disk access could have been much faster.

* Tape access was slow too. A program was saved twice and also loaded twice. After the program was loaded it was loaded again and compared, if the two copies didn't match a ?LOAD ERROR was displayed. Not sure how that would help, but it made tape access twice as slow as it could be. When loading a game I used to stop it when I thought it was past the half way point and type RUN. 9 out 10 times I would get it right. It's nice to know something is wrong with your saved program, but there wasn't a way to perform recovery. How could you load the 2nd version? I don't know.

* There was no reset button. When a game got boring you had to power cycle the machine. Not very elegant or healthy. The RESTORE button was huge and mostly unused, apart from the RUN/STOP + RESTORE combination. What about a C= + RESTORE to reset the computer?

* The C64 would have been much easier to type on (and look at) had they used the C64-C model from the start.

* When a C64 was turned on LETTERS WERE CAPS. A bit ugly. You could turn it to lower case, but that messed up using all the graphical characters you'd use in your programs to draw lines and simple graphics. I would have been nice if it started with lower case, shift for upper and using C= and CTRL for all the graphical characters.

Reply Score: 7

RE: Comment by MOS6510
by moondevil on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 06:56 UTC in reply to "Comment by MOS6510"
moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

In Portugal and Spain the Spectrum family ruled, and I only got to know the C64 thanks to the Amiga.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 06:59 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by MOS6510"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

IIRC it also was very popular in the UK. It's also a great and fun computer.

I have a ZX Spectrum 128K. It's easy to detach its keys, clean them and put them back!

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510
by judgen on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 15:30 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by MOS6510"
judgen Member since:
2006-07-12

In Sweden, the Spectrum never made it. C64 was the first major home machine over here. Even regular food retailers had c64 casettes on the shelf. That was awesome, games for everyone! hehe.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510
by zima on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 17:46 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by MOS6510"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Spectrum clones ruled the day also in the former Soviet Union: many ~Russian clones among http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_ZX_Spectrum_clones#Unofficial_... - also quite a few from other Warsaw Pact countries, but from what I know those didn't catch on to the extent they did in former Soviet republics.

I guess the simple architecture played a role, some of them apparently even made in cottage-like fashion - in a report from a trip made 2 decades ago to Russia, to secure some of their treasures for the National Museum of Science and Industry, in London ( http://www.inc.com/magazine/19960615/1967.html ):

Prized among the loot are reverse-engineered Sinclair ZX-Spectrum clones [...] with Russian documentation and games stored on audiocassette tapes. The clones come in a variety of shapes, colors, and designs, and bear little resemblance to their Western counterparts. Their motherboards were made unofficially in state electronics plants by underemployed workers, who then assembled the computers at home and sold them in ones or twos either privately or at flea markets. We end up purchasing two Sinclair clones; one of them comes with a guarantee -- a handwritten note with the telephone number of the teenager who assembled the device. Cost: the equivalent of $19 U.S.


In the late 90s I got a CD collection of ~Russian Spectrum demos, with matching emulator - they did some insane things on those machines. Now http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZX_Spectrum_demos#External_links could be a good starting point, I suppose (and RU version of that article appears to have a list of presumably most notable productions).
edit: w8, Youtube must be the most straightforward way to check them out now, lots of demoscene stuff uploaded there (yeah, it feels kinda "bad", but...)

Edited 2012-08-02 17:49 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by MOS6510
by Kroc on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 07:31 UTC in reply to "Comment by MOS6510"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

* Fix the bug preventing fast disk access! Disk access was very slow compared to other systems. Fastloaders proved disk access could have been much faster.


If the slow disk access hadn’t been there, then fastloaders would not have caught on and been improved as quickly as they did. If anything, the slow disk access helped improve load times in the long run as well as pushing compression algorithms forward, allowing for more content than before.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510
by henderson101 on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 10:01 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by MOS6510"
henderson101 Member since:
2006-05-30

But if disk access had been on a par with other systems, one wouldn't have required fast loaders. Chicken, meet egg. Disk access has a finite speed that is capped by a number of factors, physical disk hardware being the one hardest to work around. But with limited RAM, the fast loaders were a trade off between clever programming and cramming in bits where ever you could fit them.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 11:37 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

The problem is that the drive is slow when the software doesn't have a fast loader, like your own programs for example. Or programs/games that consist of a single file.

I'm sure if a game would benefit from an even faster drive they would make a fast(er) loader.

I used a Final Cartridge III and it had the fastest disk loader I have experienced.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by MOS6510
by zima on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 13:39 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

The problem is that the drive is slow when the software doesn't have a fast loader, like your own programs for example. Or programs/games that consist of a single file.

Hm, but fast "loaders" could be used also for saving your own stuff...

And I kinda see the point that, eventually, the benefits brought by the whole movement of fast loaders outweighed the early discomfort - that movement of sorts (largely revolving around "mix-tapes" or "mix-floppies" of cracked games, after all) basically also included intros. Which led to demoscene.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by MOS6510
by zima on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 13:30 UTC in reply to "Comment by MOS6510"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Of course you could add stuff or upgrade components, but that would have added to the cost.
[...]
* Fix the bug preventing fast disk access! Disk access was very slow compared to other systems. Fastloaders proved disk access could have been much faster. [...]
* Tape access was slow too. [...] It's nice to know something is wrong with your saved program, but there wasn't a way to perform recovery. How could you load the 2nd version? I don't know.
* There was no reset button.

Well, those issues were largely rectified with cartridges later on - which at least in some places were essentially included in the package, you getting a cart without requesting it, or even without really knowing then what it was. And the whole package still remained definitely the least expensive computer available at retail.
(the few ~regions sort of standardising on particular series, it seems; here it was http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Blackbox3.jpg - largely about tape fast loader)

It's nice to know something is wrong with your saved program, but there wasn't a way to perform recovery. How could you load the 2nd version? I don't know.

Hm, the few "non-mixtape" (and no fast loader - so using the default routines) official releases of games that I had, essentially filled their tape with multiple copies of the game... which did come handy once, when the first track of one game got corrupted.
(w8, I still have them somewhere - too bad my C64 is most likely kaput)

* The C64 would have been much easier to type on (and look at) had they used the C64-C model from the start.

Hey, it's not like they could choose to use that shape from the start (versus just giving a bit more time to correct faults, such as with floppy controller chip), it came half a decade later for Commodore designs - but OTOH maybe the "soap dish" (that's what it was called at my place) shape gave it distinctive visual identity, in the period critical for adoption? ;p

* When a C64 was turned on LETTERS WERE CAPS. A bit ugly.

Hm, that never bothered me. Just how it was, the standard way - not like typography was particularly crucial (not many people had printers - plus they would likely type & print in some software, I think). OTOH, capital letters probably greatly helped the legibility on the standard-issue small CRT TVs, so it's good they were the default. Oh, and not used that much beyond loading software.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 15:03 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by MOS6510"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

Cartridges, in large part, fixed my suggestions to make the C64 better. I.e. they provided what the C64 lacked and the users missed.

If the C64 already had these things it made room for other stuff in the cart or the user may not need a cart at all. You could only insert one. If I inserted my Simon's BASIC cart I didn't have the fast loader and the reset button, if I inserted my Final Cartridge III I couldn't run my Simon's BASIC programs.

The shape could have been better if they did some testing, but instead they used the VIC-20 design (the breadbox). Commodore made typewriters and the PET computers before the VIC-20/C64, so they should have had some experience with professional typists and keyboards. The C128 keyboard was great.

The CAPS never bothered me either, but looking back now it did seem a bit weird.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510
by zima on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 15:28 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

How long was it, at C64 introduction, since Commodore made an exit from typewriter business? (edit: over two decades http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commodore_International#Founding_and_e... - and CBM didn't really ever design them, it seems: only repaired and license-produced) Maybe a case of organisation as a whole forgetting things.
Oh, and the first version of PET had a horrible keyboard, much worse than Volkscomputer/C64 (and when PET improved on it, I guess it still wasn't really better? ...seems similarly fat)

If one was forced to swap between 2+ cartridges, that could made a difference - but then, it didn't bother vast majority of users, I guess. Their one cart was just sitting there.

PS. Look what I found in PET article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Tentoonstelling_mens_en_computer_... (does the narrator say anything curious / funny / quaint beyond what EN-sounding words and the description suggests? And w8, such TV transmissions were still b&w in 1979?...)

Edited 2012-08-02 15:36 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 15:34 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

My FC3 indeed just sat there, but that meant I never did anything in Simon's BASIC anymore. Maybe I will again one day, apparently I have 2 SB carts and I may find the manual somewhere.

If the first PET keyboard was so bad that would have been even more incentive to pay attention to the VIC/C64 keyboard. The ZX Spectrum keyboard was even worse, but the IBM PC, which predates the C64, had a great keyboard. So examples were about.

To me it seems the C64 keyboard and its BASIC 2.0 was just Commodore being cheap. Despite is also being presented as a serious computer Commodore and we know it would be mainly used as a games machine, not some to write novels on (a novel in CAPS).

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by MOS6510
by zima on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 16:09 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by MOS6510"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Well I suppose you have more than one ~C64 machine now, so several carts aren't that much of a problem any more ;p

And yes, it was so bad, just look at it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Commodore_2001_Series-IMG_0448b.j... (and also visible in that Dutch newsreel I linked in late PS just above) - so VIC/C64 did represent a process of improvement. While remaining (VIC->C64) inexpensive - that's largely how it took over; it's a bit unfair to compare it to one of most expensive machines, and from a manufacturer which had the best keyboards. As far as home computers go, it was already quite decent.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by MOS6510
by Zbigniew on Mon 6th Aug 2012 10:22 UTC in reply to "Comment by MOS6510"
Zbigniew Member since:
2008-08-28

* Its chips (video and sound) were great, but they could not be accessed from BASIC without POKEing. Apart from that its BASIC wasn't very good, being almost the same as the VIC-20. Not everybody likes Simon's BASIC, but it would have been an improvement and provide a way to do video and sound stuff from BASIC.
Of course you're right, that it would be better to have it "out of the box" - but, on the other hand, it made a place for variety of extensions: not everyone preferred BASIC (remember Logo, Comal, variety of BASIC extensions, etc.?).

* Fix the bug preventing fast disk access! Disk access was very slow compared to other systems. Fastloaders proved disk access could have been much faster.
It wasn't possible. Commodore engineers too late realized, that VIA6522 (used in 1541 floppy disk station) has "hardware bug". Only the later models (1571) had VIA6522 replaced with CIA6526, having the transfer 5x faster since the very beginning (burst mode).

And once more "of course": as we all saw, it could be "fixed in software" anyway (variety of free "fastloaders") - but most probably they had no time.

* Tape access was slow too.
Indeed it was. But almost every commercial program/game used its own "fast-load" routine.

* There was no reset button.
Yes, actually it was strange, that one had to build it in by himself.

* The C64 would have been much easier to type on (and look at) had they used the C64-C model from the start.
...but maybe more expensive as well. Remember: Tramiel always was going to cut the costs.

* When a C64 was turned on LETTERS WERE CAPS. A bit ugly.
...but also standard behaviour for 8-bitters at these days.

There is another thing, that attracted my attention: fixed colour pallette. It seems to me, that it would be quite easy to make it selectable, e.g. by reserving a few memory cells for intensity of red, green, blue (for every of 16 colours available at the same time), and such solution doesn't seem to raise the costs. Maybe they thought "16 colours will be enough"?

P.S. It could be only 16 cells, each one reserving 2 bits for R,G,B intensity value, respectively. Such way we could have 16 colours at the same time, selectable out of 4*4*4=64 possible colours pallette. And if the remaining 2 bits were used for e.g. "overall intensity", then we could have even more.

Edited 2012-08-06 10:37 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Mon 6th Aug 2012 11:37 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by MOS6510"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

Of course you're right, that it would be better to have it "out of the box" - but, on the other hand, it made a place for variety of extensions: not everyone preferred BASIC (remember Logo, Comal, variety of BASIC extensions, etc.?).


Anything else but the default made you either load it first or use the cartridge port, which means you couldn't use it for anything else.

Almost every home computer had BASIC standard, even the IBM PC had it. It would have been cool if Commodore had opted for Pascal for example, but commercially BASIC would be the best choice, just a shame they didn't update/extend it compared to the VIC-20.

"* Fix the bug preventing fast disk access! Disk access was very slow compared to other systems. Fastloaders proved disk access could have been much faster.
It wasn't possible. Commodore engineers too late realized, that VIA6522 (used in 1541 floppy disk station) has "hardware bug". Only the later models (1571) had VIA6522 replaced with CIA6526, having the transfer 5x faster since the very beginning (burst mode).

And once more "of course": as we all saw, it could be "fixed in software" anyway (variety of free "fastloaders") - but most probably they had no time.
"

I know, but I was just theorizing how the same computer could have been (much) better without adding to the cost. It was supposed to have much quicker disk access if they hadn't messed it up and only discovered after production had started.

"* Tape access was slow too.
Indeed it was. But almost every commercial program/game used its own "fast-load" routine. "

Indeed, but your own programs didn't. :-p


There is another thing, that attracted my attention: fixed colour pallette. It seems to me, that it would be quite easy to make it selectable, e.g. by reserving a few memory cells for intensity of red, green, blue (for every of 16 colours available at the same time), and such solution doesn't seem to raise the costs. Maybe they thought "16 colours will be enough"?

P.S. It could be only 16 cells, each one reserving 2 bits for R,G,B intensity value, respectively. Such way we could have 16 colours at the same time, selectable out of 4*4*4=64 possible colours pallette. And if the remaining 2 bits were used for e.g. "overall intensity", then we could have even more.


During C64 vs ZX Spectrum wars colors often show up. The C64 had a number of pretty ugly colors, while the Spectrum had very nice ones. The advantage in serious software would be for the Spectrum, but I think the ugly C64 colors worked very well in game graphics. They could very easily be combined to make very nice graphics, while the Spectrum colors were all so bright and distinct that combining them wasn't so easy.

Minds you 16 colors was a very acceptable number those days.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510
by Zbigniew on Mon 6th Aug 2012 11:47 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510"
Zbigniew Member since:
2008-08-28

Minds you 16 colors was a very acceptable number those days.
I agree - but look: it seems, that it could have been so easily made even better... anyway, VIC has to fetch colour values from somewhere. Just a little modification: instead from some internal register, it could take it from RAM, where the programmer could so easily change it.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Comment by MOS6510
by zima on Wed 8th Aug 2012 23:59 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

But you ignore how those colours were made - all very hard-wired into the chip (a chip not dealing only with GFX, and with already quite a lot of space taken by such advanced features as sprites, in times when chip space was very at premium). To save the space on the chip, many of the colours were even simply the "opposites" of some others - making it possible to reuse large parts of resistor banks determining the colours.

(BTW, WRT your posts further down - this isn't twitter, no reason to tinyurl; and you know, the cars from early Mustang days have much more following than Model T - the latter is just a historical curiosity; for kids today, contemporary to them toys are that "coolest thing in store")

Edited 2012-08-09 00:17 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510
by zima on Wed 8th Aug 2012 23:58 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

>> "* Tape access was slow too.
> Indeed it was. But almost every commercial program/game used its own "fast-load" routine. "

Indeed, but your own programs didn't. :-p

But, again, turbo carts worked also for saving stuff...

During C64 vs ZX Spectrum wars colors often show up. The C64 had a number of pretty ugly colors, while the Spectrum had very nice ones. The advantage in serious software would be for the Spectrum, but I think the ugly C64 colors worked very well in game graphics. They could very easily be combined to make very nice graphics, while the Spectrum colors were all so bright and distinct that combining them wasn't so easy.

Minds you 16 colors was a very acceptable number those days.

I'm not sure if "bright and distinct" (as you put it) equals "very nice" ...from the Spectrum stuff I was exposed to, it was more often "garish" (and full of weird & non-beneficiary artefacts, any serious software was mostly monochromatic in those days - curiously, also ~Soviet Spectrum scene demos...)

Still, it is a bit too bad that not much thought went into C64 colour palette, apparently (some trivia and a link about the "choice" of colours: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MOS_Technology_VIC-II#Colors ) - it was almost random; they could at least grab some painter or lecturer from the nearest arts academy, for one day...

OTOH, it's not so simple as "16", considering they were displayed on interlaced screens & with quite complex ways of arriving at colours in transmission standards such as PAL ( http://www.studiostyle.sk/dmagic/gallery/gfxmodes.htm )

But TBH, with ~games, I quite quickly came to the conclusion that they look better in 16 shades of grey... (in my room I had my own small B&W TV; during most of the day, I could move the C64 to the living room, where the big colour TV was - but, as I said, I kinda learned to appreciate greyscale, it looked more "refined" IMHO; made you not so sorry you didn't have an Amiga)

Edited 2012-08-09 00:11 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Where has all the efficiency gone?
by ThomasFuhringer on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 08:21 UTC
ThomasFuhringer
Member since:
2007-01-25

It had 64k of memory. Today's PCs have like 4G. That is a factor of 62 500. Are they really 62500 times as powerful?

Reply Score: 2

digitallysane Member since:
2011-12-19

They are.

Reply Score: 3

MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

I think if OS X and Windows were programmed in Assembler they would be 10.000 times faster.

And crash 10.000 times faster too as such huge code bases are very difficult to manage and debug in Assembler.

Still, I think a lot of CPU power is wasted by all these layers and weird multitasking processes in the background. Then again these things do make live easier.

Reply Score: 2

moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

Yeah, we have tons of VM and bloated software layers nowadays.

Reply Score: 2

Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

They are more powerful, but most are still limited by disk access. Al though SSD does help.

Reply Score: 3

chiwaw Member since:
2006-02-05

Not sure why you're looking at memory to compare power between computers (CPU, RAM & bus speed, etc would do it).

But I'm pretty sure today's computers are WAY more than 62500 times more powerful than a C64 ;)

Reply Score: 1

ThomasFuhringer Member since:
2007-01-25

I took RAM as an example because it is integrated in the name. Of course you could discuss this with any other spec.
It depends on what you call powerful. Fact is the C64 could run a GUI, a word processor etc., albeit rather slowly. It appears to me had it been five times faster it could have achieved what today's PCs do with thousands of times the resources.

Reply Score: 1

chiwaw Member since:
2006-02-05

Believe me it's not the case. You say 5x but even 10x the RAM: try getting a hold on an old PC XT with 640Kb of RAM. Try making an OS for it that does everything today's machines does, and I assure you, you won't be able ;)

Reply Score: 1

Zbigniew Member since:
2008-08-28

Fact is the C64 could run a GUI, a word processor etc., albeit rather slowly. It appears to me had it been five times faster it could have achieved what today's PCs do with thousands of times the resources.

In fact, it has been those days FASTER than IBM PC:

http://tinyurl.com/3tjn7o5

and:

http://tinyurl.com/cwkq2lw

Reply Score: 1

Comment by KLU9
by KLU9 on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 11:03 UTC
KLU9
Member since:
2006-12-06

The resemblances between the retro geek in the video and ... er... me... is just too frightening to contemplate.

(although of course I was a BBC Micro user, not a C64 fan)

Edited 2012-08-02 11:04 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by KLU9
by MOS6510 on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 12:11 UTC in reply to "Comment by KLU9"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

A friend of mine had an Acorn Electron. He later got a C64, just like all of us.

He swapped the Electron with my brother for a Power Cartridge (C64 util/fast loader cart). Somehow I got my hands on it and a few years ago I gave it back to the original owner.

Although a bit limited compared to the BBC (although expandable) it was still a very nice machine. Very sturdy and a great BASIC. IIRC you could embed Assembler routines in BASIC.

When used to a full screen editor like the C64 it was a bit strange to edit BASIC on an Acorn though. You could move the cursor around, but you couldn't edit. Instead you'd move it somewhere and you could copy text to the line you were really on.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by KLU9
by darknexus on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 13:37 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by KLU9"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

When used to a full screen editor like the C64 it was a bit strange to edit BASIC on an Acorn though. You could move the cursor around, but you couldn't edit. Instead you'd move it somewhere and you could copy text to the line you were really on.


Sounds like the Apple II's primitive edit mode when you were running the Applesoft Basic interpreter, at least in DOS 3.3 which used the version of Basic your machine had in ROM. ProDOS's basic.system (which was always used if present on a bootable ProDOS disk) made a few improvements later on, but it was still a bit awkward to use.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by KLU9
by MOS6510 on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 14:49 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by KLU9"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

As I remember it you had a line cursor. The direction keys would create a block cursor (or the other way around). You could move to any place on the screen and hit a "copy" key. The character under the cursor would appear under the "mother" cursor and the "ghost" cursor would move to the next character.

More annoying was that the Electron had a "break" key that performed a reset, while the C64 had a "delete" key at the same position, top right. I was used to a C64 and each time I made a typing mistake the Electron would reset.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by KLU9
by zima on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 13:33 UTC in reply to "Comment by KLU9"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

The resemblances between the retro geek in the video and ... er... me... is just too frightening to contemplate.

(although of course I was a BBC Micro user, not a C64 fan)

Well, the BBC Micro would be more properly British, I suppose ...so I imagine that means the retro geek in the video went a bit astray in his ways.
Maybe it's your long-lost evil twin brother?

Reply Score: 2

Comment by ilovebeer
by ilovebeer on Thu 2nd Aug 2012 16:08 UTC
ilovebeer
Member since:
2011-08-08

Experiencing the C64 era as it was happening was great -- countless hours spent and a whole lotta fun with that machine. Kids obviously won't have that nostalgia, and naturally have little-to-no interest. Technology from `ancient times` just isn't appealing or impressive.

All I can say is I hope kids today have that same type of experience with the technology they're growing up with. Maybe 30 years from now, they'll be reminiscing about the good ol' xbox360 days.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Comment by ilovebeer
by Zbigniew on Mon 6th Aug 2012 11:43 UTC in reply to "Comment by ilovebeer"
Zbigniew Member since:
2008-08-28

Experiencing the C64 era as it was happening was great -- countless hours spent and a whole lotta fun with that machine. Kids obviously won't have that nostalgia, and naturally have little-to-no interest. Technology from `ancient times` just isn't appealing or impressive.
Right: nobody, who hasn't came through this, will understand this (or not completely).

All I can say is I hope kids today have that same type of experience with the technology they're growing up with. Maybe 30 years from now, they'll be reminiscing about the good ol' xbox360 days.
I doubt it; it must be in some way like with any other things, that were quite new: for example, I'm pretty sure, that the owners of first mass-manufactured cars (like the ones from beginning of past century) could share such feelings - but would anyone mention, say, "Ford Mustang" days? I don't think so; during 60s the car wasn't "amazing novelty". And nowadays neither xbox360, nor PS3 (etc.) isn't that "coolest thing in store", like Commodore 64 used to be.

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