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ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews

Interviews with a variety of Atari-related figures, conducted (primarily) by Kevin Savetz of the ANTIC Podcast.

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ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Aug 4, 2017 Kevin Savetz
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Stan Osborne, Atari Design Research Stan Osborne was a freelance software engineer in Atari's Design Research department from 1981 through 1984. He also worked on projects for coin-op and home computing departments. He created micro-kernels, proof of concepts, proto-applications and device drivers. There are two versions of this interview: the podcast version is about an hour shorter. The extended version includes a lot more of Stan's education, jobs, and history before he was at Atari.  This...
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Topics: Atari Design Research, Atari, Atari 400, Atari 800, interview, computer history
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Aug 28, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Bard Ermentrout, RAMbrandt Bard Ermentrout was the creator of the popular Atari graphics program RAMbrandt. Subtitled "The Atari Design Studio," RAMbrandt was released in 1985 by Antic software. Written in ValForth, it supported joystick, keyboard, Koala Pad, and Atari Touch Tablet for input. He also created an add-on Solid Object Module which allowed users to combine mode 9 geometric primitives to make what appeared to be 3D-shaded objects.  The predecessor to RAMbrandt was a...
Topics: RAMbrandt, Atari 8-bit, Atari 400, Atari 800, Graphics software, ValFORTH
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jul 15, 2016 Randy Kindig
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Bob Brodie: User Group Manager for Atari Hi and welcome to another special interview edition of Antic the Atari 8-bit computer podcast.  My name is Randy Kindig and I'll be providing the interview questions for this episode.  I'm extremely pleased to provide this interview with a name well-known in the Atari community: Mr. Bob Brodie.  Bob worked for Atari as User Group Manager and later Director of Communications from 1989 to 1994.  Bob was directly involved in many of the Atarifests in...
Topics: Atari, Atari user groups, Atari 8-bit, interview, computer history, Atari 1450XLD
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jul 13, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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John Harris: Jawbreaker, Frogger, Mouskattack John Harris created the games Jawbreaker, Frogger, and Mouskattack for the Atari 8-bit computers. He worked at Sierra On-Line and later Synapse Software. He later created video character generator systems based on the Atari machines. This interview took place June 10, 2016. Teaser quotes: "Literally — I mean, a day or two difference could have made — gosh, my goodness, what a huge difference in my life if I had gone into that store a couple...
Topics: Jawbreaker, Atari 8-bit, Atari 2600, computer games, interview, computer history, video game...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jul 11, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Bob Alkire and Steve Saunders, Rainbow GPU Bob Alkire and Steve Saunders worked in Atari's Corporate Research lab under Alan Kay, where they worked on the Rainbow GPU. Rainbow was a next-generation graphics chip (after ANTIC) which was never released. This interview took place on June 10, 2016. The first voice you hear is that of Bob Alkire. Teaser quotes: Steve: "And they basically went around the table and said, 'This computer project has software in it, therefore it belongs in my...
Topics: Atari Corporation, RAINBOW GPU, Rainbow graphics chip, ANTIC chip, Atari Sierra Project
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jul 9, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Eric Freeman: Bootleg and Weakon Eric Freeman published two programs through Atari Program Exchange: Bootleg and Weakon. Bootleg first appeared in the summer 1983 APX catalog: the catalog called it "a search-for-booty maze game submitted from New Zealand," and it received a rare full-page description in that catalog. Weakon was only available in the final APX catalog, winter 1983. That game was later published by Antic software. This interview took place on May 26, 2016 — for me —...
Topics: Eric Freeman, Bootleg, Weakon, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Atari 8-bit, interview, computer games,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jul 7, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Max Manowski, Wizard’s Revenge Max Manowski wrote Adventure, a text adventure game that he released into the public domain to Atari users groups. Later, he modified Adventure and called it Wizard's Revenge, which was published by Atari Program Exchange. Wizard's Revenge was available in the fall 1981 APX catalog, the very first APX catalog. This interview took place May 27, 2016. Teaser quote: "In this adventure, each node that you went to was a separate file. And if you went to a node...
Topics: Max Manowski, Wizard’s Revenge, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Adventure game, text adventure
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jul 5, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Frank Paris, Mathlib for Deep Blue C Frank Paris wrote Mathlib for Deep Blue C, a library of floating-point functions for use with the Deep Blue C programming language. Mathlib first appeared in the fall 1983 APX catalog, where it won second prize in the systems/telecommunications category. The Deep Blue C compiler was written by John Palevich, whom I previously interviewed. You can contact Frank at: frankparis at comcast dot net. This interview took place on May 27, 2016. Teaser quote:...
Topics: Mathlib for Deep Blue C, Deep Blue C, C programming language, Atari 8-bit, Atari 800, Atari 400,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jul 1, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Kathy and Phil Bergh, I'm Different! Kathy and Phil Bergh published one program through Atari Program Exchange: I'm Different!, which first appeared in the inaugural APX catalog, winter 1982-1983. The program won third prize in the Education category in that catalog. It was one of the few commercial programs developed in the PILOT language. Kathy and Phil also wrote three articles — also about PILOT — for ANTIC magazine. This interview took place on May 24, 2016.  Kathy and Phil's articles...
Topics: I'm Different!, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Atari 8-bit, interview, computer history, early...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 29, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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David Thiel, musician and interactive audio David Thiel is a musician and interactive audio designer. At Gottlieb, he did the sound for arcade games including Reactor, Q*Bert, and Mach 3. At Action Graphics, David created the sound for Artillery Duel for the Atari 2600, and Beamrider and Pitstop for the Atari computers. And at Free Radical Software/Incredible Technologies, he worked on Winter Games for the Amiga and Atari ST. He has created the sound and music for dozens of other computer games...
Topics: Gottlieb, Qbert, Q*bert, Reactor, Mach 3, arcade games, coin-op games, video games, interview,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 27, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Gary Yost, The Catalog and Cyber Studio Gary Yost worked at Antic magazine, in product development. He was the man behind The Catalog, Antic's catalog of third-party software. When Atari Program Exchange was shut down, he contacted programmers from APX to re-publish their works in's Antic's Catalog. Gary was instrumental in creating CAD 3-D (written by Tom Hudson), Cybermate, and the Cyber Studio graphics suite — which were all published by Antic — and in commercializing the StereoTek 3D...
Topics: Gary Yost, The Catalog, Cyber Studio, Antic Magazine, CAD 3-D, Atari 8-bit, Atari ST, tereoTek 3D...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 23, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Roland Gustafsson, Print Shop Companion Roland Gustafsson wrote The Print Shop Companion, an add-on package for Brøderbund's popular Print Shop software, which added a printable calendar, font and page border editors, and other features. He first developed the program for the Apple ][, then ported the software to the Atari 800 and Commodore 64. In the retro-computing community, however, Roland is best known for his work on the Apple ][, where he specialized in designing copy protection as well...
Topics: Roland Gustafsson, Print Shop Companion, Broderbund Software, Br0derbund Software, Brøderbund...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 23, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Fred Parr, MACE newsletter Fred Parr was a member of MACE — the Michigan Atari Computer Enthusiasts group, and the man who printed the club newsletter. You can find scans of the newsletter at archive.org. This interview took place on April 22, 2016. It in, we discuss Arlan Levitan, whom I previously interviewed. "And I just marvel that something that crude, in today's perspective, could have actually given is so much enjoyment and hope about the future."
Topics: Michigan Atari Computer Enthusiasts, MACE, Fred Parr, Atari user group, Atari 8-bit, interview,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 21, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Chuck Gibke, Air Raid! Chuck Gibke, published one piece of software for the Atari computer: Air Raid!. The game first appeared in the winter 1982-1983 APX catalog, where it won second prize in the entertainment category. This interview took place on April 22, 2016. "Winning the contest generated a little bit of prizes you could pick from Atari stuff, which was pretty amazing. There was like $2,000 worth of stuff. ... Several boxes of stuff showing up at the house one day and I thought that...
Topics: Chuck Gibke, Air Raid!, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Atari 8-bit, Atari 400, Atari 800
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 19, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Steve Cavin: Minotaur, Juggles' House, Juggles' Rainbow  Steve Cavin started at Cromenco where he built computer kits and tested hardware. Later he wrote several programs for the Atari 8-bit computers: Minotaur, which was published by Atari Program Exchange — it first appeared in the fall 1981 APX catalog; and the Atari versions of Juggles' House and Juggles' Rainbow, educational games published by The Learning Company. He also wrote “The Five Letters", a hangman-style game that - so...
Topics: Steve Cavin, Interview: Minotaur, Juggles' House, Juggles' Rainbow, computer history, educational...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 17, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Neil Harris: Commodore, Atari, GEnie Neil Harris started at Commodore as a member of the VIC-20 launch team, then continued to be a writer, programmer, and product manager there. He moved to Atari, where he was from 1984 to 1988. There he was hardware products manager, director of communications, and director of publications. He worked on Atari Explorer magazine, and wrote a bit for other publications including Compute!'s First Book of Atari and STart magazine. He later moved on to the GEnie...
Topics: Neil Harris, Commodore, Atari, GEnie online service, General Electric Network for Information...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 15, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Jay Jaeger, APX Space War Jay Jaeger released one program for the Atari computers: Space War, which was published by Atari Program Exchange. It appeared in the fall 1983 APX catalog. This interview took place on March 16, 2016. Teaser quote: "It took a couple revisions back and forth. The program was fine; getting the documentation right, and yet have them be happy with it, was a little frustrating. But managed to get it done."  Space War in the fall 1983 APX catalog  Space War at...
Topics: APX Space War, Atari Program Exchange, Atari 8-bit, mainframe computer games, interview, video game...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 13, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Joel Gluck: Babel, Attank!, Pushover, Fun-FORTH Joel Gluck published four programs through Atari Program Exchange: Babel, Attank!, Pushover, and Fun-FORTH. The first, Babel, was published when he was just 16 years old. He later worked at Atari's corporate research under Alan Kay. He also wrote a few articles for A.N.A.L.O.G. Computing magazine. Babel was available in the first APX catalog, fall 1981, where it won second prize in the Entertainment category. Pushover first appeared in the summer...
Topics: Joel Gluck, Babel, Attank!, Pushover, Fun-FORTH, Forth programming language, APX, Atari Programming...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 11, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Ted Kahn, Atari Institute for Educational Action Research Ted Kahn was creator of the Atari Institute for Educational Action Research, which  awarded major grants of Atari home computer products, and consulting services to individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations. The group granted more than $1.25 million in products and services to about 100 innovative people and projects around the US and overseas. He also co-wrote the books Atari Games and Recreations, and Atari PILOT Activities...
Topics: Ted Kahn, Atari Institute for Educational Action Research, interview, computer history, Atari,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 9, 2016 Randy Kindig
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Rob Zdybel, Star Trek, Missile Command, Bug Hunt Rob Zdybel was a long-time employee at Atari, having worked there from 1979 to 1996, when the Tramiels left.  Rob has a long line of credits including Pigs in Space, Real Sports Football, Stellar Track and Star Trek for the Atari 400/800, SOS for the Atari 2600, Missile Command for the Atari 5200, and Bug Hunt for the Atari XE.  He also designed the system BIOS for the Atari 5200. Rob mentions the SYLVIA game system in the interview, although...
Topics: Rob Zdybel, Star Trek, Missile Command, Bug Hunt, Atari 8-bit, Atari XE, Atari 400, Atari 400,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 7, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Lane Winner: Graph-It, XEP-80, De Re Atari Lane Winner was an Atari employee for about a decade: he worked in the software development support group, as a programmer, and as an engineer. He is the author of Atari's Graph-It, contributor to De Re Atari, and designer of the XEP-80 80-column peripheral. Lane wrote several early releases for Atari Program Exchange: BASIC Cross-Reference Utility, BASIC Renumber Utility, and Variable Changer. This interview took place April 20, 2016.  "OK,...
Topics: Lane Winner, Graph-It, XEP-80, De Re Atari, interview, computer history, Atari, Atari 8-bit, Atari...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
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Dave Menconi, Atari Customer Service and User Group Support Dave Menconi started at Atari in 1982 doing customer support for the Atari computers. Later he moved to the marketing group, where he helped support the Atari users groups. Dave wrote the program "Dancin' Man" for Antic magazine, and wrote several articles for Atari Connection magazine. In this interview, we discuss Chris Crawford, Ted Richards, and Mike Albaugh, whom I previously interviewed. This interview took place on...
Topics: Dave Menconi, Atari Customer Service, User Group Support, interview, computer history, Atari
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 3, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Stan Ockers, public domain game programmer Stan Ockers started on the KIM-1 single board computer, where was was co-author of The First Book of KIM with Jim Butterfield. He later got an Atari 400, and became a prolific author of public domain programs which were distributed by users groups and in Antic magazine. His game credits include Chicken, Frog, and Bats, all of which were published in early issues of Antic magazines. Some of his programs were also published in Page 6 magazine.  This...
Topics: Stan Ockers, public domain software, Atari 8-bit, Atari 800, Atari 400, Antic magazine, Page 6...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Jun 1, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Harry Guiremand, SynChron Harry Guiremand wrote SynChron, a calendar application, which was published by Synapse Software in 1983.  This interview took place on April 15, 2016. Thanks to Wade at the Inverse ASASCII podcast for his research and suggestions. You can hear Wade's thorough review and walkthrough of SynChron at the Inverse ATASCII podcast. Teaser quote: "I had a password system where if you didn't guess the password correctly, you had to wait a little bit longer each time you...
Topics: Harry Guiremand, SynChron, Synapse Software, Atari 8-bit, interview, Atari 800, Atari 400, computer...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 30, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Greg Thrush and Marian Dillashaw: Stock Management and WordGo Greg Thrush published two programs through Atari Program Exchange: Stock Management and — with his wife Marian Dillashaw — Wordgo. Stock Management first appeared in the fall 1982 APX catalog, where it won first prize in the business and financial applications category. Wordgo first appeared in the summer 1983 catalog.  This interview took place on March 4, 2016. Teaser quote: "If nothing else, it got them a little excited...
Topics: Greg Thrush, Marian Dillashaw, Stock Management, WordGo, Atari 8-bit, interview, computer history,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 26, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Wes Horlacher, Magic Melody Box Wes Horlacher published one program in Atari Program Exchange: Magic Melody Box. Magic Melody Box first appeared in the winter 1982-1983 APX catalog, where it was awarded second prize in the education category. It was also published as Boîte à Musique by Atari France. Teaser quotes: "These machines aren't just for accounting and computation and mathematics. We can do creative things. Let's see what we can do with these machines to actually inspire the...
Topics: Wes Horlacher, Magic Melody Box, interview, computer history, Atari 8-bit, Atari 400, Atari 800,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 24, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Steve Smith, ANTIC chip Steve Smith was an engineering technician at Atari from 1977 until 1979, where he worked on the development of the Atari 400 and 800 computers. He was one of the technicians who designed the ANTIC and CTIA chips. In this interview, we discuss Liza Loop, whom I previously interviewed. This interview took place on February 9, 2016. Teaser quotes: "...Huge roomful of 1 MhZ but not 1.1 MhZ devices. So that's what they put in the peripherals, was 6507 that they had...
Topics: Steve Smith, ANTIC chip, Atari 8-bit, Atari 400, Atari 800, CTIA chip, GTIA chip, interview,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 22, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Clyde Spencer: Stereo 3-D Graphics and Isopleth Map Making Clyde Spencer published two programs through Atari Program Exchange: Stereo 3-D Graphics Package and Isopleth Map-Making Package. Stereo 3-D Graphics Package was first available in the winter 1982 APX catalog, and Map-Making in the Spring 1982 catalog. Clyde was also co-founder of the Bay Area Atari Users Group, and wrote some reviews for Antic magazine. This interview took place on March 1, 2016. In it, we discuss Liza Loop and John...
Topics: Clyde Spencer: Stereo 3-D Graphics, Isopleth Map Making, Atari 400, Atari 800, Atari 8-bit,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 20, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Robert Waldman, Financial Asset Managment System Robert Waldman wrote Financial Asset Managment System, which was published by Atari Program Exchange. It first appeared in the Fall 1981 APX catalog, where it won second prize in the personal finance and record keeping category. As explained in my interview, Robert submitted a program called Atari 800 Olympic Gamebook System to Atari Program Exchange but it was not accepted or released. Robert sent me his only copy of the never-before-published...
Topics: Robert Waldman, Financial Asset Management System, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Atari 8-bit,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 18, 2016 Randy Kindig
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Tod Frye, Asteroids Hi, there!  Welcome to the next in the series of Atari-related interviews being produced by Antic, the Atari 8-bit computer podcast.  My name is Randy Kindig and I’ll be leading this interview.  Most notably, while working at Atari, Tod Frye developed the 400/800 version of Asteroids and the 2600 version of Pac-Man, converting them from the coin-op version.  He has many other games to his credit.  He later worked for Axlon, Nolan Bushnell’s company. This interview...
Topics: Tod Frye, Asteroids, Pac Man, Atari 400, Atari 800, Atari 8-bit, interview, computer history, video...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 16, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Ursula Wolz, early computing and education Ursula Wolz was thinking about computers and education in the early days of personal computing. She worked on Apple ][ games for Children's Television Workshop, consulted for Atari Research on their endeavors in educational software, and taught Logo to some of the first students who learned it. This interview took place on February 12, 2016 Teaser quote: "It was one of the first games that was completely graphical ... Because the kids using it...
Topics: Ursula Wolz, early computing, computer education, interview, computer history, Apple II, Atari 800,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 14, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Owen Rubin: Major Havoc, Space Duel Owen Rubin worked in Atari's coin-op division from 1976 to 1984 — he is best known for his programming work there on Major Havoc, Space Duel, and Battlezone. He also served as a go-between between the arcade division and the consumer division, where the Atari home computers were created. After that, he was a game designer at Nolan Bushnell's Bally Sente.  In this interview, we discuss Ed Rotberg, whom I previously interviewed. This interview contains some...
Topics: Owen Rubin, Major Havoc, Space Duel, Atari, video games, arcade games, video game history,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 12, 2016 Kevin Savetz and Rob McMullen
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Randy Glover, Jumpman Randy Glover is the creator of one of the best games for the Atari computers, Jumpman, which was published by EPYX. He also created the sequel, Jumpman Junior, and programmed the swimming competition portion of Summer Games. Randy ported Jumpman to the Commodore 64 and created another C64 game, Lunar Outpost. This interview took place on May 7, 2016. I am joined on this interview by Rob McMullen, host of the Player/Missile Podcast, who has been working to reverse engineer...
Topics: Jumpman, Atari 8-bit, Atari 400, Atari 800, computer history, computer games, Donkey Kong,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 10, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Mike Silva, Syncalc Mike Silva worked at Synapse, where he wrote the Syncalc spreadsheet application. In this interview we talk about Ihor Woloseko, whom I previously interviewed. This interview took place on February 11, 2016. Teaser quotes: "If I had put out a game ... it would have sold a few thousand copies and that would been it. So I just got dumb lucky by being talked into writing a spreadsheet instead." "These guys, a lot of them, they were in the world - some of them -...
Topics: Mike Silva, Syncalc, Synapse Software, Atari 800, Atari 8-bit, spreadsheet, interview, computer...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 7, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Richard Lindgren, APX financial software Richard Lindgren published two programs in Atari Program Exchange. Real Estate Cash Flow Analysis first appeared in the winter 1983 APX catalog, where it won first prize in the business and professional applications category. Strategic Financial Ratio Analysis was first available in the summer 1983 catalog, where it took second prize in the home management category. Richard also wrote the program Banjo Picker, "Program your Atari to make sounds like...
Topics: Richard Lindgren, APX financial software, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Banjo Picker, ANTIC...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 4, 2016 Randy Kindig
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Marcin Sochacki, SIO2BT Marcin Sochacki, also known as Montezuma on AtariAge, is originally from Poland and currently lives in Germany.   In recent years he developed theSIO2BT, or SIO to Bluetooth for the Atari computer line.  This hardware allows you to connect your Atari to your modern computer,tablet, or smartphone to share files.  Mar-TEEN also developed the NVC (Next Valid Character) software, a tool for organizing files on SD cards for SIO2SD.  And, if that weren’t enough, he also...
Topics: SIO2BT, Atari SIO, Bluetooth, Atari, Atari 8-bit, interview, computer history
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
May 2, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Al Casper: Counter, My Spelling Easel, Equestrian Al Casper published three programs with Atari Program Exchange. His first, Counter, was first available in the fall 1982 APX catalog. It won first prize in the learning category in that catalog. Counter was also released in a French language version by Atari France. Next was My Spelling Easel, which was first available in the spring 1983 catalog, and won second prize in the learning category. His third program was Equestrian, which appeared in...
Topics: Atari Program Exchange, APX, Atari, Atari 8-bit, interview, computer history, Al Casper, Counter,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 30, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Michael Crick, Frogmaster Michael Crick created the game Frogmaster, which was published for the Atari computers by Atari Program Exchange. It first appeared in the summer 1982 APX catalog, where it won first prize in the entertainment category. Michael later made a version of Frogmaster for the Commodore 64. He created two other C64 games: Break Street (a break dancing game), and Go For the Gold (an Olympics style game) as well as TERSE, a programming language for the C64. Frogmaster cost...
Topics: Atari Program Exchange, Frogmaster, APX, Atari, Atari 8-bit, interview, computer history,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 26, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Yakov Epelboim: Pushky and Devilator Yakov Epelboim is a Russian immigrant who published two programs for the Atari 8-bit computers. Pushky (which I learned is the Russian word for "cannons") was published by Atari Program Exchange, and first appeared in the Winter 1982-1983 APX catalog for $22.95. He also wrote Devilator, which he self-published as Zebra Company. Both programs were written in machine language, and both are unusual games, a little off the beaten track from other games...
Topics: Pushky, Devilator, Atari 8-bit, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Atari 400, Atari 800, interview,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 24, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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John Palevich: Dandy and Deep Blue C Compiler John Palevich wrote several programs which were published by Atari Program Exchange: the Chameleon CRT Terminal Emulator; Mantis Boot Tape Development System; Deep Blue C Compiler and its source code on a product called Deep Blue Secrets; and Dandy, a graphical dungeon crawl game that is famously the inspiration for the arcade classic, Gauntlet. He later worked in the advanced projects division at Atari, working on Atari's unfinished Eva computer...
Topics: John Palevich, Atari 8-bit, Atari 800, Atari 400, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Dandy Dungeon,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 22, 2016 Randy Kindig
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Ron Luks, Founder and manager of the Atari Forums on CompuServe Welcome to this interview-only episode of Antic, The Atari 8-bit computer podcast.  My name is Randy Kindig.  In this show, I’ll be talking with Mr. Ron Luks, a name that you’re probably familiar with if you used your Atari to access the Compuserve Information Service.   Ron was founder and manager of the Atari Forums on CompuServe (SIG*Atari, 8-bit Forum, 16-bit Forum (ST), Atari Developers, Atari Vendors, and others.)  He...
Topics: CompuServe Information Service, Atari SIG, Atari 8-bit, Atari ST, Atari special interest group,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 20, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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John Powers, Atari Director of Software Development John Powers was co-founder of The Authorship Resource, the company that created all of the software for the CyberVision 2000 computer. From 1980 to 1982 he worked at Atari as Director of Software Development for personal computers. While he was there, he wrote three pieces of software for Atari Program Exchange: Newspaper Route Management Program, Computerized Card File, and Cosmatic Atari Development Package. He was later VP of Research and...
Topics: Atari, Software Development. APX, Atari Program Exchange, CyberVision 2000, interview, computer...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 18, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Edward Lehmann, Recipe Search 'N Save Edward Lehmann published one Atari program through Atari Program Exchange: Recipe Search 'N Save, which first appeared in the summer 1982 APX catalog. It won third prize in the Personal Finance & Record Keeping category in that catalog.  It was APX catalog number 20114, available on diskette, required 32K, and cot $22.95 This interview took place on February 2, 2016. Teaser quote: "The thing is, it didn't work all the time, that's what bugged me....
Topics: Recipe Search 'N Save, recipe card program, interview, APX, Atari Program Exchange, computer...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 16, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Chuck Mullally, Mastermatch Chuck Mullally published one game through Atari Program Exchange: Mastermatch, game similar to the Mastermind board game. Mastermatch was one of the last APX programs to be released: it was first available in the Winter 1983-1984 APX catalog — the final APX catalog. Chuck told me that the game won a $1000 prize from APX, but the catalog — a sparse 8 pages and much smaller than the previous APX catalogs — doesn’t even mention that. This interview took place on...
Topics: Mastermatch, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Atari 800, Atari 400, Atari 8-bit, MasterMind, computer...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 14, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Bryon Wilcox, Wilcox Company On December 12, 2015, I bought an unusual Atari computer on ebay: it appeared to be a typical 800XL, but where the Atari name would have been, there was a sticker that said "GRAPHICS 1 - The Wilcox Company." Another sticker on the bottom of the computer indicated that the company was based in Washougal, Washington. When I received the computer, I found that it included a hand-made cartridge that contains a message display program. You can enter a few lines...
Topics: Atari 800XL, Atari 8-bit, Wilcox Company, Washougal, Washington, computer history, interview
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 12, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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John Crane published one Atari program, through Atari Program Exchange: RPN Calculator Simulator. The program first appeared in the Spring 1982 APX catalog, where it was awarded second prize in the business and professional applications category.  John was also one of the founders of the Bay Area Atari Users Group, and did some software evaluation for Atari Program Exchange. This interview took place on January 31, 2016. Teaser quote: "He [Steve Wozniak] introduced all of us to his...
Topics: RPN, reverse Polish notation, HP calculators, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Bay Area Atari Users...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
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Alan Newman: Domination, Tutti Frutti, Hotel Alien Alan Newman published several programs for the Atari 8-bit computers: Domination, a Hamurabi-style management game, was published by Atari Program Exchange. It first appeared in the Fall 1981 catalog, where it won first prize in the entertainment category. Next he created Tutti Frutti, an arcade-style game that was published by Adventure International. And Hotel Alien, a graphical adventure game published by Artworx. He also wrote Spy Vs. Spy...
Topics: Domination, Tutti Frutti, Hotel Alien, interview, computer history, Atari 8-bit, Atari 800, Atari...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 7, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Darren Schebek, Envision character set editor Darren Schebek wrote Envision, a character set editor for the Atari 8-bit computers. It was published in Antic magazine’s software catalog in 1986. Envision cost $19.95: “Create giant, multi-screen, 8-way scrolling pictures. Build effortless animations (up to 128 frames at 10 speeds). ENVISION has over 50 commands giving you total control over the Atari’s 6 incredible text modes. On the 130XE, Envision supports 16 simultaneous fonts.” After...
Topics: Darren Schebek, Envision character set editor, Atari 800, Atari 8-bit, APX, Atari Program Exchange,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 5, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Jerome Domurat worked at Atari from November 1981 through July 1986 as an artist and interface designer. He started creating art for the home game systems, including E.T., Krull, and Raiders of the Lost Ark for the Atari 2600; and Jungle Hunt, Pengo, and Baseball for the 5200. He made the transition when Jack Tramiel bought the company: he worked on user interface design for the Atari ST. He also helped design the NEOchrome paint program, and adapted the graphics and animation for the ST...
Topics: Atari, computer history, interview. interface design, Atari 8-bit, Atari ST, NEOchrome, Star...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Apr 3, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Alan Henricks was Controller at Atari during the Warner Communications era. He was there from 1978 through 1983. This interview took place on November 17, 2015. Teaser quotes: "Had the next generation of technology - the personal computer - succeeded, Atari would be where Apple is today." "The first thing he said to me, looking me in the eyes ... he said, 'I speak to you on fear of my life.' My response was, 'I so don't want to be here.'"
Topics: Atari Corp., Atari 8-bit, interview, computer history, Atari
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 31, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Richard Leinecker, Your Atari Comes Alive Richard Leinecker is author of the book Your Atari Comes Alive, which was published by Alpha Systems. The book provides instructions for building hardware projects that work with the Atari 8-bit computers, such as event detectors, motion sensors, a light pen, Christmas lights, and networking computers together. The book has been scanned as is available at the Internet Archive. He wrote a followup book called Your Atari ST Comes Alive. He also wrote for...
Topics: Richard Leinecker, Your Atari Comes Alive, Atari 8-bit, Atari ST, computer history, interview,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 29, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Art Prag: Mapware, Starware, and Astrology   Art Prag, along with Harry Koons, published three programs with Atari Program Exchange: Mapware, Starware, and Astrology. Harry Koons died in 2005.   Mapware first appeared in the fall 1981 APX catalog, where it won second place in the personal interest and development category. “With the MAPWARE programs you can create a wide variety of high-resolution world maps. MAPWARE already contains 9,000 pairs of geographic coordinates for locating main...
Topics: Art Prag, Mapware, Starware, Astrology, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Atari 8-bit, Atari 400, Atari...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 27, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Jeff Johannigman published his first two computer programs through Atari Program Exchange: Rabbotz and Snark Hunt. He went on to program the Atari ports of Mask of the Sun and Serpent's Star for Br0derbund, then worked on Relax for Synapse, GI Joe for EPYX, copy protection for Electronic Arts, and was producer of Master of Orion, published by MicroProse. Jeff is also one of the co-founders of the Game Developers Conference. This interview took place on January 30, 2016. Teaser quotes: "So...
Topics: Atari Program Exchange, Rabbotz, Snark Hunt, APX, Atari 8-bit, Atari computers, Mask of the Sun,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 25, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Leigh Zeitz, Epson Connection book Leigh Zeitz wrote the book The Epson Connection: Atari Edition, about using your Atari 8-bit computer with Epson printers; as well as a version of the book for the Commodore 64. This interview took place on November 8, 2015. Teaser quotes: "IBM came out and said: 'Well guess what? As of next month we're not going to be creating any more IBM PCjrs.'" "'Uh, Leigh, I probably don't even need to make this phone call, but we don’t need your...
Topics: Epson printers, Atari computers, Atari book, IBM PCjr, Atari XL, Commodore 64, Epson
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 23, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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David Johnson co-created the Atari 400/800/5200 version of Popeye, which was released by Parker Brothers. This interview took place on November 9, 2015. Teaser quote "That was my first work experience. I really enjoyed it.  We were doing like 60, 70 hours a week."
Topics: David Johnson, Popeye, Atari 5200, Atari 400, Atari 800, Atari 8-bit, interview, computer history,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 20, 2016 Randy Kindig
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Steve Baker: Defender, Stargate Steve Baker is well-known in the Atari world as having done the 400/800 and 5200 conversions of Defender.  He also did ports of Stargate for the 5200 and the 400/800.  Additionally, he developed Miniature Golf and Microgammon SB for the 400/800 and 5200, and Reversi and Gomuku for the 400/800.   He worked for Apple from 1980 to 1982, then for Atari from 82 to 84.  Steve also wrote games for the Apple II, the Atari 2600, the Intellivision, and the Commodore...
Topics: Defender, Stargate, Steve Baker, interview, Atari 400, Atari 800, computer games, computer history,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 18, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Mike Potter: Protector II, Shadow World, Nautilus, Chicken Mike Potter ported several Apple II games to the Atari 8-bit computers for Crystalware, including Protector. He later developed five programs for Synapse Software: Protector, Protector II, Chicken, Nautilus and Shadow World — in a one year period, with the combined sales of 93,000 copies. In this interview we discuss Steve Hales and Ihor Wolosenko, both of whom I previously interviewed. This interview took place October 22, 2015....
Topics: Synapse Software, Crystalware, Protector II, Shadow World, Nautilus, Chicken, Atari 800, Atari 400,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 14, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Jeff Bell, Atari coin-op Jeff Bell worked for Atari Games for 31 years. He stated in 1973 as a Pong inspector, then moved to the engineering department, specifying requirements for parts. He worked in IT and system administration, and did other jobs in his more than three decades with the company. He also ran the Itsy Bitsy Bulletin Board System. This interview took place on November 7, 2015. In it, we discuss Bob Stahl, whom I previously interviewed. Teaser quote: "People say Atari died...
Topics: Atari Games, arcade video games, coin-op games, Pong, interview, video game history
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 12, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Stephen Lawrow, Mac/65 assembler Stephen Lawrow created the Mac/65 assembler, which was published by Optimized Systems Software. Stephen became an employee of OSS, where he also worked on the company’s enhanced BASIC products, BASIC XL and BASIC XE. This interview took place on November 1, 2015. In this interview we discuss Bill Wilkinson of OSS, whom I previously interviewed.  Teaser quotes: “I got so frustrated, I couldn’t wait till I got Mac/65 mature enough where it could start...
Topics: Stephen Lawrow, Mac/65 assembler, Optimized Systems Software, OSS, Atari 8-bit, BASIC XL, BASIC XE,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 10, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Bob Stahl, Atari receiving inspection and software quality Bob Stahl worked in the Atari home computer division, where he was the senior technician in the receiving inspection department, doing first article inspection. (He explains what that means in the interview.) He then moved to software quality engineering, testing produced software to make sure it looked right and worked correctly. Later, he was hired by Atari's coin-op division to do receiving inspection for that company. He also ran an...
Topics: Atari 8-bit, Atari computers, Modem Magazine BBS, bulletin board system, Atari 800, Atari 400,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 6, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Bob Polin, Blue Max Bob Polin was the programmer of Blue Max and Blue Max 2001 — both published by Synapse Software, and co-creator of Puzzle Panic with Ken Uston. He also wrote the game "Maxter Mind" which was published by Antic magazine. This interview took place on February 15, 2016. In it, we discuss Ihor Wolosenko, whom I previously interviewed. After we did this interview, Bob sent me the floppy disks containing the source code for Blue Max, which I was able to recover....
Topics: Bob Polin, Blue Max, Blue Max 2001, Synapse Software, Ken Uston, Puzzle Panic, Antic magazine,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 4, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Steve Hales: Slime, Dimension X, Fort Apocalypse Steve Hales published several games with Synapse Software: Slime, Dimension X, Fort Apocalypse, and Mindwheel. His first job was reverse engineering the Atari 2600 to create the Starpath Supercharger. His game for that platform was Suicide Mission, an Asteroids clone. This interview took place on October 21, 2015. In it we discuss Ihor Wolosenko and Cathryn Mataga, whom I previously interviewed; and Mike Potter and Bob Polin, whose interviews are...
Topics: Steve Hales, Slime, Dimension X, Fort Apocalypse, Synapse Software, Atari 8-bit, Atari 400, Atari...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Mar 2, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Glenn Faden, Microsailing Glenn Faden published one program for the Atari 8-bit computers: Microsailing, which was published by Atari Program Exchange. Microsailing first appeared in the Spring 1983 APX catalog. This interview took place on January 27, 2016. Teaser quote: “I got a lot of interesting feedback. One of the comments that I got back from people was that it was too difficult.”
Topics: APX, Atari Program Exchange, Microsailing, interview, computer history, early computer games,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 29, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Surfer Bob, Warez Sysop "Surfer Bob", real first name Carlos, ran The Pipeline BBS, an Atari bulletin board system that offered warez for download -- pirated software. This interview took place on January 28, 2016. Teaser quote: "He didn't have anybody to back him up but he had a stun gun ... he had that in his pocket, and he walked up to Shlomo and grabbed him ... took out the stun gun and just, like, sparked it in his face."
Topics: Atari 8-bit, BBS, BBSes, bulletin board systems, warez, software piracy, The Pipeline BBS,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 27, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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David Stoutemyer, The Soft Warehouse David Stoutemyer was co-founder of The Soft Warehouse, a company that specialized in mathematics software for several computer platforms. The company published three programs through Atari Program Exchange. Algicalc and Polycalc first appeared in the summer 1982 APX catalog for $22.95 each. Algicalc was described as a "valuable tool for students and teachers of algebra and calculus and for professionals who want a quick way to perform operations in...
Topics: Atari 8-bit, David Stoutemyer, The Soft Warehouse, interview, computer history, early math...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 25, 2016 Randy Kindig
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David Crane, Pitfall! and Atari 400/800 OS David Crane started his programming career at Atari, making games for the Atari 2600. He also worked on the operating system for the Atari 800 computer, as well as the games Outlaw and Howitzer, which were sold through APX.  David left Atari in 1979 and co-founded Activision, along with Alan Miller, Jim Levy, Bob Whitehead, and Larry Kaplan. While at Activision, he was best known as the designer of Pitfall! This interview took place October 23, 2015...
Topics: David Crane, Pitfall, Activision, Atari 800, Atari 2600, Atari VCS, Atari 8-bit, Atari programmer,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 23, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Bill Rice, HYSYS Bill Rice published one program in the Atari Program Exchange catalog: HYSYS, or Hydraulic Program. It was a tool that did calculations for sizing hydraulic systems and components. HYSYS first appeared winter 1982 APX catalog. This interview took place on January 27, 2016 Teaser quote: "So you can imagine with something like a hydraulic program, they're like 'No we've got our scientific calculators and we look really cool punching in these numbers. We're not going to get a...
Topics: Atari Program Exchange, APX, HYSYS, Hydraulic Program, hydraulic calculator, Atari 8-bit, Atari...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 20, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Jerry Falkenhan, Finance Software Jerry Falkenhan had three programs published by Atari Program Exchange: Family Cash Flow, Family Budget, and Family Vehicle Expense. Atari bought Family Cash Flow and Family Budget and packaged them as an Atari-branded product, Family Finances. This interview took place on January 26, 2016. Teaser quote: "I get my first royalty check. I'll never forget: $35,000. I go down to Wells Fargo and they wouldn't cash the darn thing." Picture of Jerry during...
Topics: Atari 8-bit, Atari 400, Atari 800, APX, Atari Program Exchange, Family Cash Flow, Family Budget,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 18, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Bill Louden, CompuServe and GEnie Bill Louden was part of the team that built CompuServe Information Service, the first consumer online service, where he was director of the computing, games, entertainment, e-mail, chat, and forum products. He went on to be the founder of the GEnie online service (General Electric Network for Information Exchange.) This interview took place October 15, 2015. Teaser quotes: "You know, we expected at CompuServe customers to spend $10 to $15 a month. ... We...
Topics: CompuServe, GEnie, General Electric Network for Information Exchange, CompuServe Information...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 16, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Jerry Jewell, co-founder of Sirius Software Jerry Jewell was co-founder of Sirius Software. Sirius published many Atari titles including Alpha Shield, Capture the Flag, Fast Eddie, Gruds in Space, Sneakers, Wavy Navy, and Wayout. The company was probably best known in the Apple ][ world, but also published software for the Commodore and other platforms - more than 160 titles in all. This interview took place October 15, 2015. Teaser quotes: "In the latter days it got down to where a game...
Topics: Sirius Software, Alpha Shield, Capture the Flag, Fast Eddie, Gruds in Space, Sneakers, Wavy Navy,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 14, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Bob Polaro was an Atari employee from 1978 through 1984, where he wrote several programs for Atari Program Exchange — very early programs in the APX catalog: Lemonade, Mugwump, Preschool Games, Reversi, Space Trek, and Dice Poker.  He also wrote the States & Capitals and European Countries & Capitals educational programs for the Atari computers, both published by Atari.  He programmed several games for the Atari 2600, including Defender and RealSports Volleyball. This interview took...
Topics: APX, Atari Program Exchange, Lemonade, Mugwump, Preschool Games, Reversi, Space Trek, Dice Poker,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 12, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Dave Pratt, founder of Digital Vision (ComputerEyes) Dave Pratt was founder of Digital Vision, the company that made ComputerEyes for the Apple //, Commodore 64, and Atari 8-bit computers. ComputerEyes was a slow-scan video digitizer that plugged into the joystick port (on the Atari version). You'd connect a video camera or VCR into the ComputerEyes box, and software on your computer would create a black-and-white or greyscale version of the image on the computer screen. This interview took...
Topics: Digital Vision, ComputerEyes, Atari 8-bit, Atari 400, Atari 800, Apple II, Commodore 64, Atari ST,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 10, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Thomas Hudson, Atari sales trainer Thomas Hudson was a trainer for Atari, where he taught computer store owners and others about the Atari 8-bit computer line, and attended trade shows to show off Atari's computer products. Later he became a product manager for three products: light pen, touch tablet, and mouse.  In this interview we discuss Andrew Soderberg, whom I previously interviewed. This interview took place on January 21, 2016. Teaser quotes: "And one was this little device that...
Topics: Atari 8-bit, computer history, interview, Atari light pen, Atari touch tablet, Atari XL, Atari 400,...
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 8, 2016 Randy Kindig
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Roger Hector, Atari’s Advanced Products Group Roger Hector started at Atari back in 1976.  As a creative designer, he was originally hired by Pete Takaishi (Industrial Design Manager), before working in the Art Department, and then finally for Al Alcorn. He managed Atari's Advanced Products Group and helped create the Cosmos system before leaving to co-found Videa with Howard Delman and Ed Rotberg. This interview took place September 17, 2015. Teaser Quotes: “There’s a LOT of interesting...
Topics: Atari, Atari Cosmos, Atari 8-bit, interview, computer history
ANTIC Podcast: The Interviews
Feb 6, 2016 Kevin Savetz
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Bob C., Software Pirate Bob C. was an Atari software pirate in New York who went by the moniker The Missing Link. This interview took place on January 19, 2016. Teaser quotes: "It's all I wanted to do. I skipped going on vacation with my parents because I wouldn't be able to dial into these bulletin boards and see what was going on and leave messages to my friends. It just got, got like a drug." "Sometimes I say, 'Jesus, that ate up a lost of my life, what the hell was I...
Topics: Atari 8-bit, Atari 400, Atari 800, software piracy, Atari software piracy, warez, The Missing Link,...