Author Topic: Bil Herd: Tales From Inside Commodore  (Read 621 times)

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Offline Homer J Simpson

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Bil Herd: Tales From Inside Commodore
« on: May 02, 2019, 06:19:40 pm »


 

Offline chris_leyson

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Re: Bil Herd: Tales From Inside Commodore
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2019, 07:38:40 pm »
I remember the C64 and those PLA chips ran really hot and were quite often one of the first parts to fail. For 6502 based machines my prefered hardware was an Atari 400 or 800 and Atari actually published the complete assembly listing, it was printed on fanfold paper and arrived in two heavy cardboard boxes. It's a shame about the demise of Commodore and Atari, they backed the wrong horse, Motorola 68000. Apple survived the processor wars but that's probably because they pitched their machines more towards the professional market rather than games. it's all history now but interesting times though.
 

Offline bgm

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Re: Bil Herd: Tales From Inside Commodore
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2019, 11:55:45 am »
I remember the C64 and those PLA chips ran really hot and were quite often one of the first parts to fail. For 6502 based machines my prefered hardware was an Atari 400 or 800 and Atari actually published the complete assembly listing, it was printed on fanfold paper and arrived in two heavy cardboard boxes. It's a shame about the demise of Commodore and Atari, they backed the wrong horse, Motorola 68000. Apple survived the processor wars but that's probably because they pitched their machines more towards the professional market rather than games. it's all history now but interesting times though.

Commodore's failure has little to do with processor architecture choice and 99% to do with complete and utter mismanagement on the part of upper management. 

It is a problem that is unfortunately repeated time and time again in numerous industries when you put accountants and MBAs in charge. 

This applies to mines just as equally as it does to technology companies. 

While I am *NOT* saying that putting a MBA in charge of a company will always cause it to fail, usually when you put someone who is from accounting or sales in charge of a company that actually "produces" things, more often than not, that is usually when you have trouble. 

The reason for that is that they *usually* (though not always) don't appreciate (or understand) the details of the product that they are producing and selling. 

In the case of technology products for example, they often can't identify what is "crap" and in the case of mining, they can't identify when they are taking the piss and "high grading" when they shouldn't in the interest of short term gain. 

As I said before, this applies just as easily to iron ore or petroleum as it does to technology widgets (such as phones or computers). 

I would imagine that this probably applies to other industries as well, but the mining, exploration, technology and aviation industries are those that I have personal experience with. 

My $0.02 worth so take it with a bucket load of salt. 
/BGM
"Forward to the past!"
 
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Offline chris_leyson

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Re: Bil Herd: Tales From Inside Commodore
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2019, 03:07:18 pm »
Quote
Commodore's failure has little to do with processor architecture choice and 99% to do with complete and utter mismanagement on the part of upper management.

I think at some point in the Amiga story Commodore wanted a faster 68030 but Motorola didn't deliver the 68040 until 1990 and by then it was too late. You're right, it was bad management and the whole Commodore story is really sad. If they were a little more focused on what market they were trying to target it might not have been such a disaster. The Amiga 4000/040 was a nice machine but at the same time, early 90's, Intel were launching the Pentium P5, they had a lot more revenue to throw at processor design.
 

Offline bsdphk

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Re: Bil Herd: Tales From Inside Commodore
« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2019, 03:31:09 pm »
The root cause of Commodores demise was that Commodore almost single-handedly invented the "offshore-sandwich" tax-evasion model.

But they hadn't come up with the "Capital Fund" model of cycling the money back in again, so when the CBM900 and Amiga were ready at the same time, they had to ditch one because they couldn't find a way to move the money from Bahamas to a new assembly line in Braunsweig.


 


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