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Computers and the videogame crash of the 80's.

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On 9/6/2020 at 3:44 PM, mr_me said:

The amiga, genesis, snes, saturn, all increased the number of scrolling tile planes for advanced graphics effects.  Then the focus shifted to 3d graphics.  Only the atari 7800 took a different approach and nothing wrong with that.  Good to have different ideas on video game graphics technology.

Not really, computers and some older systems did as well and using dynamic sprite size change/manipulation would also be surperior to tile illusions for creating pseudo-3D games, if later systems used it we would have had more "scaling game" arcade ports without having to wait until he Saturn came out, which was also the first time a console had a decent port of Outrun or any game similar to outrun without heavy compromises or mode 7 shenanigians and that's a game that came out in 1986.

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It was (effectively) dealt a mortal blow by the crash and (definitely) by the Adam.  Granted, it survived until 1985.  However, the writing was on the wall before it was pulled.  I can appreciate you banging the drum for the CV pretty loudly, but the CV's demise was caused (to some debatable degree) by the crash and the dearth of cheap capable 8 bit computers like the A8 and (more-so) C64 like it or not.

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1 hour ago, Hwlngmad said:

It was (effectively) dealt a mortal blow by the crash and (definitely) by the Adam.  Granted, it survived until 1985.  However, the writing was on the wall before it was pulled.  I can appreciate you banging the drum for the CV pretty loudly, but the CV's demise was caused (to some debatable degree) by the crash and the dearth of cheap capable 8 bit computers like the A8 and (more-so) C64 like it or not.

 

Ye in 1985 Coleco said it was "marginally profitable" after the adam, it was more profitable before then so if there was an impact by the crash by any significant measure where's the proof of it? Any articles earlier than early summer 1985 during that year all have the electronics side of the Coleco in doom and gloom because of the Adam, and the discontinuation and continuing of the profitable ColecoVision started at the end of 1984.

 

Before that part of 1984 Coleco was pumping out software and still was talked about in the press as this big thing, so as much as you like to call it "beating the drum" it's more like you are ignoring the facts and don't have anything to suggest otherwise while I'm actually producing data from the press at the time.

 

Keep in mind the cheap computer price wars also started before late 1984 as well, it actually started quite a bit earlier and it was mostly Atari that articles questioned whether to buy over a computer while not as much for Coleco which still had articles about it taking off with great performance.

 

I won't say the crash didn't do anything, after all it did reduce third party output on the Coleco outside of Colecos control which would mean less revenue but the Adam is THE reason that led to Coleco "considering" shelving it as another article would say. That's all I'm saying.

 

Blaming the crash for something that was primarily caused by the Adam (as well as destroy the whole electronics division) doesn't make sense and that's what you keep arguing. Again, not saying the crash was "zero impact" but it clearly wasn't the reason. You are clearly making a stubbornly debunked argument that is covered by too many writings to take at any serious believably. 

 

We are talking several months into 1985 before the discontinuation of the CV which earlier they said was still moderately profitable, if the crash was the primary corporate there would have been pressure to kill it in late 84, why would they keep selling it then wait into 1985 to say we are "continuing to produce hardware and software for consoles and discontinuing the adam" and then further into 95 say "we are considering dropping the line" with greenberg CEO eventually finally saying even later into 1985 "hey we got rid of all the inventory", doesn't make sense if the crash did the primary damage.

Edited by Leeroy ST
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2 hours ago, Hwlngmad said:

It was (effectively) dealt a mortal blow by the crash and (definitely) by the Adam.  Granted, it survived until 1985.  However, the writing was on the wall before it was pulled.  I can appreciate you banging the drum for the CV pretty loudly, but the CV's demise was caused (to some debatable degree) by the crash and the dearth of cheap capable 8 bit computers like the A8 and (more-so) C64 like it or not.

 

As a European, it is hard for me to understand the level of affection that some folk have for the ColecoVision console, perhaps it is a side-of-the-pond thing.

 

I remember it appearing in the UK, and then it basically seemed to fall flat on its face because its graphics capabilities weren't much more impressive (if at all) any better than a Sinclair Spectrum, but for a higher price.

 

That problem also hit the MSX1 computers, which used the same Texas TMS9918A chip from 1979 that the ColecoVision used, and which appeared and were then heavily discounted/remaindered, finally disappearing completely out of shops within seemingly a few months.

 

 

Anyway, going back to the topic of home computers ... it still surprises me that the USA never got any of the low-cost mid-80s 8-bit machines that straddled the price-vs-performance gap between the continually-dropping-in-price early-80s 8-bit computers like the C64/Atari, and the new generation of still-expensive 16-bit computers (the ST and Amiga).

 

Amstrad's CPC464/CPC6128 offered a nice bump in graphics resolution and color over the early-80s home computers, and Amstrad's PCW8256 basically took the Adam idea and actualy made it work properly for small businesses ... and sold one heck a lot of machines in the process.

Edited by elmer
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1 hour ago, elmer said:

 

As a European, it is hard for me to understand the level of affection that some folk have for the ColecoVision console, perhaps it is a side-of-the-pond thing.

 

I remember it appearing in the UK, and then it basically seemed to fall flat on its face because its graphics capabilities weren't much more impressive (if at all) any better than a Sinclair Spectrum, but for a higher price.

 

That problem also hit the MSX1 computers, which used the same Texas TMS9918A chip from 1979 that the ColecoVision used, and which appeared and were then heavily discounted/remaindered, finally disappearing completely out of shops within seemingly a few months.

 

 

Anyway, going back to the topic of home computers ... it still surprises me that the USA never got any of the low-cost mid-80s 8-bit machines that straddled the price-vs-performance gap between the continually-dropping-in-price early-80s 8-bit computers like the C64/Atari, and the new generation of still-expensive 16-bit computers (the ST and Amiga).

 

Amstrad's CPC464/CPC6128 offered a nice bump in graphics resolution and color over the early-80s home computers, and Amstrad's PCW8256 basically took the Adam idea and actualy made it work properly for small businesses ... and sold one heck a lot of machines in the process.

Its not to say we didn't get them. Sinclair partnered with New York area watchmaker Timex to distribute NTSC ZXSpectrums in the US.  The public largely ignored it as being way too obsolete. The Amiga and ST were also released but after confusing marketing from Commodore, both machines ended up being a wet fart in the market place, struggling over roughly 3% of the marketshare. Really though, Americans preferred our IBM machines. Sure they were expensive. I remember my dad forking over 1200 bucks on a 286 . But IBM was also a household name, providing robust and reliable machines to businesses and companies for nearly a century. Then there was the fact that with the IBM PC, IBM was willling to provide the consumer with a kitchen sink's worth of documentation that made servicing and upgrading it very easy. Plus there was also the fact that in many companiesit was policy to only buy from IBM. This leads to the quip that "Nobody got fired for buying IBM."

 

I mean how can you not love the company that still has a company songbook!

 

 

 

Edited by empsolo
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1 hour ago, elmer said:

Anyway, going back to the topic of home computers ... it still surprises me that the USA never got any of the low-cost mid-80s 8-bit machines that straddled the price-vs-performance gap between the continually-dropping-in-price early-80s 8-bit computers like the C64/Atari, and the new generation of still-expensive 16-bit computers (the ST and Amiga).

I suppose it's because the US market was divided between Commodore, Apple, Atari and PC clones, and it was hard for anyone else to get a foothold.

 

There were a couple of in-between systems,  like the Apple IIgs, but being an Apple at the time, it wasn't very affordable.   There was also the Commodore 128 which had some enhancements over the C64.

 

But largely these same companies wanted to push 16-bit, and didn't want something getting in the way of that.   For instance Steve Jobs ordered the IIgs to be crippled so it didn't cannibalize Mac sales.

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3 hours ago, Leeroy ST said:

 

Ye in 1985 Coleco said it was "marginally profitable" after the adam, it was more profitable before then so if there was an impact by the crash by any significant measure where's the proof of it? Any articles earlier than early summer 1985 during that year all have the electronics side of the Coleco in doom and gloom because of the Adam, and the discontinuation and continuing of the profitable ColecoVision started at the end of 1984.

 

Before that part of 1984 Coleco was pumping out software and still was talked about in the press as this big thing, so as much as you like to call it "beating the drum" it's more like you are ignoring the facts and don't have anything to suggest otherwise while I'm actually producing data from the press at the time.

 

Keep in mind the cheap computer price wars also started before late 1984 as well, it actually started quite a bit earlier and it was mostly Atari that articles questioned whether to buy over a computer while not as much for Coleco which still had articles about it taking off with great performance.

 

I won't say the crash didn't do anything, after all it did reduce third party output on the Coleco outside of Colecos control which would mean less revenue but the Adam is THE reason that led to Coleco "considering" shelving it as another article would say. That's all I'm saying.

 

Blaming the crash for something that was primarily caused by the Adam (as well as destroy the whole electronics division) doesn't make sense and that's what you keep arguing. Again, not saying the crash was "zero impact" but it clearly wasn't the reason. You are clearly making a stubbornly debunked argument that is covered by too many writings to take at any serious believably. 

 

We are talking several months into 1985 before the discontinuation of the CV which earlier they said was still moderately profitable, if the crash was the primary corporate there would have been pressure to kill it in late 84, why would they keep selling it then wait into 1985 to say we are "continuing to produce hardware and software for consoles and discontinuing the adam" and then further into 95 say "we are considering dropping the line" with greenberg CEO eventually finally saying even later into 1985 "hey we got rid of all the inventory", doesn't make sense if the crash did the primary damage.

You are free to believe whatever you want.  I will not debate you further.  If you wholeheartedly believe that the CV was not a victim (to some degree) as a result of the crash, then that is fine and totally cool.  I will say that I, along with others, are probably in the majority thinking the CV was a victim of the crash (in some way, shape, or form).  But, of course, that is up to debate and I think I have written enough on what my views on it are.  Now, onward to more discussions regarding the thread's topic 😀

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1 hour ago, zzip said:

I suppose it's because the US market was divided between Commodore, Apple, Atari and PC clones, and it was hard for anyone else to get a foothold.

 

There were a couple of in-between systems,  like the Apple IIgs, but being an Apple at the time, it wasn't very affordable.   There was also the Commodore 128 which had some enhancements over the C64.

 

But largely these same companies wanted to push 16-bit, and didn't want something getting in the way of that.   For instance Steve Jobs ordered the IIgs to be crippled so it didn't cannibalize Mac sales.

PC clones were the big difference between the States and other places around the world.  Granted, lots of companies did join and make their own computers.  But, when they did they went in as a PC Clone, unlike what you saw in England and/or Japan.  Very different, but explains why the computer market took shape the way that it did in the 1980s.

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3 hours ago, elmer said:

 

As a European, it is hard for me to understand the level of affection that some folk have for the ColecoVision console, perhaps it is a side-of-the-pond thing.

 

I remember it appearing in the UK, and then it basically seemed to fall flat on its face because its graphics capabilities weren't much more impressive (if at all) any better than a Sinclair Spectrum, but for a higher price.

 

That problem also hit the MSX1 computers, which used the same Texas TMS9918A chip from 1979 that the ColecoVision used, and which appeared and were then heavily discounted/remaindered, finally disappearing completely out of shops within seemingly a few months.

 

 

Anyway, going back to the topic of home computers ... it still surprises me that the USA never got any of the low-cost mid-80s 8-bit machines that straddled the price-vs-performance gap between the continually-dropping-in-price early-80s 8-bit computers like the C64/Atari, and the new generation of still-expensive 16-bit computers (the ST and Amiga).

 

Amstrad's CPC464/CPC6128 offered a nice bump in graphics resolution and color over the early-80s home computers, and Amstrad's PCW8256 basically took the Adam idea and actualy made it work properly for small businesses ... and sold one heck a lot of machines in the process.

Unfortunately we in the States didn't have the development of 8-bit machines like other places around the world.  Pretty much after 1984 any pre-existing and/or new computer makers started making PC clones instead of their own distinct machines.  This was mainly due to the (IBM) PC taking over and standardizing computers on the business side and the start of the bleed over into the home / small business side when the cost of a PC (albeit a clone) came down with the offerings of other new generation computers from Atari with the ST, Commodore with the Amiga, and Apple with the IIgs being at and/or more (in some cases) that a comparable PC clone.

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2 minutes ago, Hwlngmad said:

Unfortunately we in the States didn't have the development of 8-bit machines like other places around the world.  Pretty much after 1984 any pre-existing and/or new computer makers started making PC clones instead of their own distinct machines.  This was mainly due to the (IBM) PC taking over and standardizing computers on the business side and the start of the bleed over into the home / small business side when the cost of a PC (albeit a clone) came down with the offerings of other new generation computers from Atari with the ST, Commodore with the Amiga, and Apple with the IIgs being at and/or more (in some cases) that a comparable PC clone.

Clones were pricey at the time though, it doesn't really explain the lack of options in between the 8-bits and 16-bit systems in the mid 80s..   I kind of agree there should have been more options between the <$200 8-bits and $1000 16-bits.

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1 minute ago, zzip said:

Clones were pricey at the time though, it doesn't really explain the lack of options in between the 8-bits and 16-bit systems in the mid 80s..   I kind of agree there should have been more options between the <$200 8-bits and $1000 16-bits.

Oh definitely one would think there could have and/or should have been more options in the range you stated.  But, for whatever reason, things just made a rapid transition from 8-bit to 16-bit machines and/or PC clones with very little transition between the two.  Granted, there were some higher end 8-bit computers that did come around like the CoCo 3 and Commodore 128, but not much else really and even those did not find much success compared to earlier 8-bit computers.  Ironically, the Apple II and C64 managed to chug along further into the late '80s well past their prime where one would think there should have been more (attempted) successors.  Still, very odd, but very true too.

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7 minutes ago, Hwlngmad said:

Oh definitely one would think there could have and/or should have been more options in the range you stated.  But, for whatever reason, things just made a rapid transition from 8-bit to 16-bit machines and/or PC clones with very little transition between the two.  Granted, there were some higher end 8-bit computers that did come around like the CoCo 3 and Commodore 128, but not much else really and even those did not find much success compared to earlier 8-bit computers.  Ironically, the Apple II and C64 managed to chug along further into the late '80s well past their prime where one would think there should have been more (attempted) successors.  Still, very odd, but very true too.

The Apple II managed to worm its way into the education market as school districts looked for cheap and reliable computers to fill new computer labs with. I recall that my elementary school had Apple II's in nearly every classroom until they were replaced in 1996 with Wintel PC clones running Windows 95.

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8 hours ago, elmer said:

 

As a European, it is hard for me to understand the level of affection that some folk have for the ColecoVision console, perhaps it is a side-of-the-pond thing.

 

I remember it appearing in the UK, and then it basically seemed to fall flat on its face because its graphics capabilities weren't much more impressive (if at all) any better than a Sinclair Spectrum, but for a higher price.

 

That problem also hit the MSX1 computers, which used the same Texas TMS9918A chip from 1979 that the ColecoVision used, and which appeared and were then heavily discounted/remaindered, finally disappearing completely out of shops within seemingly a few months.

 

 

Anyway, going back to the topic of home computers ... it still surprises me that the USA never got any of the low-cost mid-80s 8-bit machines that straddled the price-vs-performance gap between the continually-dropping-in-price early-80s 8-bit computers like the C64/Atari, and the new generation of still-expensive 16-bit computers (the ST and Amiga).

 

Amstrad's CPC464/CPC6128 offered a nice bump in graphics resolution and color over the early-80s home computers, and Amstrad's PCW8256 basically took the Adam idea and actualy made it work properly for small businesses ... and sold one heck a lot of machines in the process.

You might be surprised to hear that some north americans might not understand why the zx spectrum was such a popular video game system. We figure it must have been dirt cheap.  Colecovision/MSX graphics offer video game specific hardware in sprites.  Sprites that can have different colours than the backgrounds and programmers can use the chip's hardware collision detection between objects.  They also have multi-voice sound capability, the msx sound being a little better than colecovision.  Cartridges were also a convenient way to run game programs.

 

There were other computers in the 1980s.  The Tandy Coco line was based on the 6809 cpu.  It's an 8-bit cpu that had 16 bit registers and 16 bit arithmetic including multiplication.  It was followed up with the coco2 in 1983 and the coco3 in 1986.  Commodore also had various 8-bit machines including the Commodore 128 in 1985.  The C128 was CPM and C64 compatible.  But as a video game system nothing beat the commodore 64, with all due respect to Atari.  The c64 had hardware multicolored sprites, partial and full multidirectional scrolling background, and an advanced sound chip.  It's still the best selling home computer ever.  From what I can see neither the zx spectrum or the amstrad 464 had any video game specific graphics features until 1990 and the amstrad 464 sound chip was the same as the 1979 intellivision.

 

In those days choosing a home computer was really about choosing the system that gave you the most access to pirated software.  And that's region specific.  Even in north america, some regions were big on apple, while others were big on commodore.  It's also part of the reason video game consoles lost to home computers in the mid 1980s.

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17 hours ago, Hwlngmad said:

You are free to believe whatever you want.  I will not debate you further. 

You don't get to do this unfortunately unless you want to be labeled a ignorant child that can't refute simple articles that clearly show their wrong with their own facts, and instead running off with their ignorance up their arse trying to insult peoples intelligence by acting like evidence wasn't posted and it was "what I believed" yet you have no evidence, no sources, and zero integrity clearly. 

 

But if you want to stop debating if anything it shows you lost and are a sore loser in this "argument" with your lack of a valid side for it to be a legitimate argument in the first place. No it's not up for debate, if it was you would have one. You don't. 

 

20 hours ago, elmer said:

 

As a European, it is hard for me to understand the level of affection that some folk have for the ColecoVision console, perhaps it is a side-of-the-pond thing.

 

It' also hard for you to follow a simple conversation if this is your take away from a post with evidence for the time period vs, some guy who wants to believe the ColecoVision was "primarily" affected by the crash despite all the evidence showing otherwise including from the company it's self. 

 

of course this lack of critical thinking might be why you are "surprised" that the "USA never got any of the low-cost mid-80s 8-bit machines that straddled the price-vs-performance gap between the continually-dropping-in-price early-80s 8-bit computers like the C64/Atari, and the new generation of still-expensive 16-bit computers (the ST and Amiga)."

 

Oh wait they did. 

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16 hours ago, empsolo said:

The Apple II managed to worm its way into the education market as school districts looked for cheap and reliable computers to fill new computer labs with. I recall that my elementary school had Apple II's in nearly every classroom until they were replaced in 1996 with Wintel PC clones running Windows 95.

Yep, the Apple IIe had a truly amazing long run in public schools into the 90s when they were replaced by Macs and/or PC clones.  Still, its a bit perplexing why companies didn't try to bridge the gap between say an Apple IIe or C64 to an Atari ST and/or Amiga.  Either way, this big evolutionary step is what help PC clones really take off in the U.S.

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44 minutes ago, Leeroy ST said:

You don't get to do this unfortunately unless you want to be labeled a ignorant child that can't refute simple articles that clearly show their wrong with their own facts, and instead running off with their ignorance up their arse trying to insult peoples intelligence by acting like evidence wasn't posted and it was "what I believed" yet you have no evidence, no sources, and zero integrity clearly. 

 

But if you want to stop debating if anything it shows you lost and are a sore loser in this "argument" with your lack of a valid side for it to be a legitimate argument in the first place. No it's not up for debate, if it was you would have one. You don't.

Well, yes, I do get to do this as I am no longer going to debate on this discussion further as I am simply agreeing to disagree at this point and move on.  I believe that the crash was a cause of the CV's demise in some way shape or form.  You, however, completely disagree with this belief, which is totally 100% fine.  Since either party is unwilling to concede their points, we can simply agree to disagree and move on.  Additionally, I don't think I need to pull up and/or cite sources.  I have read, seen, and/or heard many a discussion about the North American video game crash to believe that CV was very much affected by the crash and was, in some way, a victim of it.  Also, this is a public forum for people to freely share their views (within reason of course) in a cordial, reasonable manner.  I don't believe everyone goes around asking for source information when someone makes a comment and/or gives an opinion.  So, if you want to keep on banging 'the CV was not a victim of the crash drum', please feel free to do so.  I certainly won't stop you, but please don't be surprise other people don't necessarily agree with you without providing sources to the contrary.

Edited by Hwlngmad
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1 minute ago, Hwlngmad said:

I believe that the crash was a cause of the CV's demise in some way shape or form.  You, however, completely disagree with this belief, 

No you believe it was the primary reason, it's funny you want to pretend to agree to disagree and act like you are trying to positively end the discussion yet change your own argument in your exiting post. 

 

3 minutes ago, Hwlngmad said:

So, if you want to keep on banging 'the CV was a victim of the crash drum', 

You're so off beat you mistakenly quoted me as arguing about YOUR OWN argument instead of my own. Which, even if we take this as a slight mistake in posting, the reverse is also false because it would imply again, I though the crash did nothing, which I never said. 

 

If you want to exit fine, but twisting words and changing your argument doesn't help you. 

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18 minutes ago, Leeroy ST said:

No you believe it was the primary reason, it's funny you want to pretend to agree to disagree and act like you are trying to positively end the discussion yet change your own argument in your exiting post. 

 

You're so off beat you mistakenly quoted me as arguing about YOUR OWN argument instead of my own. Which, even if we take this as a slight mistake in posting, the reverse is also false because it would imply again, I though the crash did nothing, which I never said. 

 

If you want to exit fine, but twisting words and changing your argument doesn't help you

First of all, my apologies as it was supposed to have said 'the CV was not a victim of the crash drum'.  I have gone back and fixed my post, so this takes care of the second part of your reply.  Also, yes, I still believe that the primary / overarching cause of the CV's demise was the video game crash combined with the influx of cheap, powerful computers like the A8 and C64.  The Adam disaster was the cherry on top of the cake.  Sorry if my arguments didn't come across as clear cut.  Sometime I even flummox myself, unfortunately and to my own detriment.

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59 minutes ago, Hwlngmad said:

Yep, the Apple IIe had a truly amazing long run in public schools into the 90s when they were replaced by Macs and/or PC clones.  Still, its a bit perplexing why companies didn't try to bridge the gap between say an Apple IIe or C64 to an Atari ST and/or Amiga.

From what I gather the Apple IIe still had multiple gaming disadvantageous to the C64 which was already popular in mindshare and released before. 

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34 minutes ago, Leeroy ST said:

From what I gather the Apple IIe still had multiple gaming disadvantageous to the C64 which was already popular in mindshare and released before. 

You do realize that in the US, gaming was not the reason why consumers bought an IBM PC or an Apple II, right? I mean my dad played F117 stealth fighter on his upgraded 286 but he primarily used it to bring work from his home office to the regular office.

Edited by empsolo
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33 minutes ago, empsolo said:

I mean my dad played F117 stealth fighter on his upgraded 286 but he primarily used it to bring work from his home office to the regular office.

Yep, the massive success (and really take over) of the IBM PC standard and/or clones in the business market led to a (somewhat) rapid adaptation in the home / small business market as well.

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I remember when the Amiga came out in 1985, it really made the 8-bits look obsolete. Talking to a salesman who said, why not consider an IBM compatible.  In my head, my immediate reaction was yuck.  A few years later I did buy a PC compatible but splurged for vga colour graphics.  And where I was, pirated PC software was rampant; it helped justify the ridiculous amount of money I paid for that computer.

 

Regarding the colecovision surviving the crash, technically the atari 2600 and intellivision survived the crash and survived longer than colecovision.  But as companies Mattel and Warner did survive where coleco did not.  This was simply because of the size and resources of these companies and Coleco's dependence on bank financing.  What happened to their home electronics divisions is really the same, only Coleco started later and finished later.  Atari and Mattel spent money like drunken sailors in 1981/82.  When the bill finally came they bolted.  Coleco had their misfortune with the Adam a couple of years later but repeated the same mistakes and had to deal with the same financial consequences.  Even a company like Activision didn't really survive the crash.  They were affected more by retailers quitting the industry due to the glut of lousy games plugging up inventories.  Activision survived in name only, none of the key people at activision remained.

Edited by mr_me
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5 hours ago, Hwlngmad said:

Yep, the Apple IIe had a truly amazing long run in public schools into the 90s when they were replaced by Macs and/or PC clones.  Still, its a bit perplexing why companies didn't try to bridge the gap between say an Apple IIe or C64 to an Atari ST and/or Amiga.  Either way, this big evolutionary step is what help PC clones really take off in the U.S.

I could guess that durability and construction materials were part of the reason. Software support via MECC was also a known entity. A trusted entity. And that's a big factor. And IIRC Apple subsidized purchases and cut all kinds of deals.

 

Hate to say it, but the Amiga and Atari ST were made of cheap plastic. This made the machine feel cheap. And cheap wouldn't hold up in the education environment.

 

Another point that helped the clones become popular was simply that dad could bring his work home. And that all clones used the same architecture and brand of processor.

 

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4 hours ago, empsolo said:

You do realize that in the US, gaming was not the reason why consumers bought an IBM PC or an Apple II, right? I mean my dad played F117 stealth fighter on his upgraded 286 but he primarily used it to bring work from his home office to the regular office.

Yeah, this was something that was hard for us teens to wrap our heads around at the time.   If it has all this graphical power, then it has the power to do your business apps.   It's got spreadsheet apps, it's got word processing apps, they can import different formats.   The ST had PC-ditto and Magic Sac to emulate DOS PC's and Macs if you really needed the app itself.

 

And I had in my possession an original IBM PC at one point.   That thing was built like a tank, but wow was it slow!!    I think even my Atari 8-bit ran faster, and my ST certainly did.

 

But what we didn't understand at the time was that while we liked to tinker with exotic hardware,  most adults did not-- not for their job anyway!   They didn't want apps that could read their file format, they wanted Lotus and Wordperfect or whatever.   They didn't want to fiddle with emulators.  It had to work without extra fuss. They wanted keyboards easy to type on, etc.   Sometimes they had floating point co-processors that our hobbyist computers did not, and that made a difference for some apps.   

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That was a big stink for me, having a floating point unit. My first 486 had one and I was a little disappointed to learn, even had hard time believing it, that games didn't really make use of it. Not even flight simulators or other simulations. It. Just. Wasn't. Used.

 

I don't even think the FPU exists anymore (could be wrong) in modern processors. Not as a discrete block of circuitry anyway. But the added instructions do. And they have been expanded many times over.

 

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