Wednesday, March 24, 2010

AlTAIR the past

Past contributor and Macintosh fan, Jeremy D., checked a book out of the library, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and the Personal Computerby Donald B. Lemke, to teach his kids about the origins of Apple.  Much to his surprise, he found a very prominent and misleading lowercase L in an illustrated panel about the MITS AlTAIR 8800 Computer.  Unless you have a degree in FORTRAN or happen to know the complete history of computers, you have no way of knowing that the illustrated computer isn't an Aitair.  I decided to give the artist the benefit of the doubt, thinking maybe he was simply reproducing an error as printed on the actual ALTAIR 8800 computers.  So I looked it up, and sure enough, as proven on the cover of this January 1975 issue of Popular Electronicsprominently featuring the ALTAIR 8800 with an uppercase L, there is no doubt that the artist is, in fact, insane.

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