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Atari's 30th Anniversary

michael posted more than 12 years ago | from the super-breakout dept.

Games 402

Atarian writes "Atari was officially incorporated 30 years ago. While many thought Atari started the video game business, that was not correct, it was Magnavox and its Odyssey console designed by Ralph Baer that would be the first. Atari would be the company that would put videogames on the map right from the start back in 1972 with the release of PONG, its coin-op arcade machine first setup in Andy Capps Bar in California, the game was a smash hit and people begin lining up first thing in the morning at Andy Capps just to get inside and play games on this magic box with a TV inside. Atari would then release its VCS (Video Computer System aka The Atari 2600) and launch Atari from its meager $500 starter capital beginnings into a $2 billion dollars in sales monster in 1982. Atari would later fall to the wayside to be replaced by Nintendo, then Sega, and othes that followed. Atari is still around in a small way, and still keeping the name and spirit alive to this very day, 30 years later. 'Have you played Atari today?'"

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Atari.com (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787663)

Atari.com [goatse.cx]

Re:Atari.com (-1)

Sexual Asspussy (453406) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787683)

http://www.fuckedcompany.com/den/

remember Digital Entertainment Network? my god. view it at work if you dare. funny fucking shit.

Re:Atari.com (-1)

geeky-troll (552499) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787773)

You should check Here [google.com] instead for the correct point of view.

Second Post (-1)

CmdrTaco (troll) (578383) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787666)

damn, too late for first.

Wow (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787670)

This story is so boring I can't even think of anything to troll on it.

Has anyone noticed? (3, Informative)

Apreche (239272) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787680)

The Atari logo is on the Neverwinter Nights box. Feaky eh?

Oh yeah.
Pitfall.
Word.

Re:Has anyone noticed? (2, Informative)

Ass-Gas-Istan (523702) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787710)

Pitfall, though played on the Atari 2600, was created by Activision [activision.com] .

Re:Has anyone noticed? (2)

EyesWideOpen (198253) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787734)

The Atari logo is on the Neverwinter Nights box. NeverWinter Nights is published by Atari.

Re:Has anyone noticed? (1, Redundant)

EyesWideOpen (198253) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787764)

The Atari logo is on the Neverwinter Nights box. NeverWinter Nights is published by Atari.

Damn line breaks. Of course this should have been:

The Atari logo is on the Neverwinter Nights box.

NeverWinter Nights is published by Atari.

Re:Has anyone noticed? (2)

crumbz (41803) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787750)

Wierd. I just got my copy in the mail from Amazon. Opened the box about two hours ago and the Atari logo was the first thing I noticed. Just plain wierd.

Re:Has anyone noticed? (4, Informative)

tfreport (458641) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787751)

Freaky eh?

No, actually it is not freaky. Atari has decended down and been purchased, acquired, or something along those lines by Infogrames. Infogrames is a big software player in Europe but has small brand recognition in the States. They figured for marketing that they would be better of using the Atari name and logo in the U.S. where it would be more recognized than Infogrames.

So when Neverwinter Nights was going to be released by Publisher Infogrames, what name did they use? Atari of course. Not freaky. Just a sound business decision for those that have never heard of that particular European company.

Re:Has anyone noticed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787813)

"The smart thing to do is not always the right thing to do. If you do the right thing, you are damn smart. -Me" -- this dude's sig.

You quote yourself in your sig? Do you have posters of yourself up in your room? Do you have the special Arco limited edition you glassware set? Are you really that narcissistic?

I've got news for you, pal. You're not that fucking clever, so quit being an ass.

foo!

Re:Has anyone noticed? (2)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787926)

Damn. That's what I get for responding to another story before posting on this one. I just noticed the Atari logo on the NWN site this morning:)

I've also seen that Atari has an ad all over TV for some driving game.

No; however, I have inhaled #@ +420 ; High @# (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787685)

Be Patriotic, Smoke Amerikan grown marijuana, not treasonous imports !!!!

Courtesy of About 420 [phish.net]

Connotative Use/Meaning

420 is a phreak s (and not just a hippie s) favorite number for a
variety of reasons, or maybe for no reason at all, but colloquially
the number says pot -- let s smoke pot, or someone s smoking
pot, or gee, i really like pot, or time to smoke pot, either by
time (4:20 a.m. or p.m.), date (April 20th), or otherwise (e.g. State
Route 420). April 20th at 4:20 is marked by annual events in
Mount Tamalpais, CA (an informal gathering); Marin Conty, CA
(the 420 Hemp Fest); Ann Arbor, MI (the Hash Bash); and
Washington, D.C. (buildup towards the July 4th Smoke-In).

Original Source(s)

Conventional wisdom: The most common tale is that 420 is the
police radio code or criminal code (and therefore the police call)
in certain part(s) of California (e.g. in Los Angeles or San
Francisco) for having spotted someone consuming cannabis
publicly, i.e. pot smoking in progress; that local cannabis users
picked up on the code and began celebrating the number temporally
(esp. 4:20 a.m., 4:20 p.m., and April 20); that the number became
nationally popularized in the late 1980s and, more ferverently, in
the early- to mid-1990s; and is colloquially applied to a variety of
relaxed and/or inspired contexts, including not only pot
consumption but also a good time more generally (in contrast to
the drug war surrounding).

Conventions are legends: 420 is not police radio code for
anything, anywhere. Checks of criminal codes (including those of
the City of San Francisco, the City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles
County, the State of California, and the federal penal code) suggest
that the origin is neither Californian nor federal (the two best
guesses). For instance, California Penal Code 420 defines as a
misdemeanor the hindrance of use (obstructing entry) of public
lands, and California Family Code 420 defines what constitutes a
wedding ceremony (Marco). One state does come close: The
Illinois Department of Revenue classifies the Alcoholic Liquor Act
under Part 420, and the Cannabis and Controlled Substances Tax
Act are next, under Part 428. (RB 5/19/99)

True story?: According to Steven Hager, editor of High Times,
the term 420 originated at San Rafael High School, in 1971,
among a group of about a dozen pot-smoking wiseacres who
called themselves the Waldos. The term 420 was shorthand for the
time of day the group would meet, at the campus statue of Louis
Pasteur, to smoke pot. ``Waldo Steve, a member of the group who
now owns a business in San Francisco, says the Waldos would
salute each other in the school hallway and say ``420 Louis! The
term was one of many invented by the group, but it was the one
that caught on. ``It was just a joke, but it came to mean all kinds of
things, like `Do you have any? or `Do I look stoned? he said.
``Parents and teachers wouldn t know what we were talking about.
The term took root, and flourished, and spread beyond San Rafael
with the assistance of the Grateful Dead and their dedicated cohort
of pot-smoking fans. The Waldos decided to assert their claim to
the history of the term after decades of watching it spread, mutate
and be appropriated by commercial interests. The Waldos contacted
Hager, and presented him with evidence of 420 s history, primarily
a collection of postmarked letters from the early 70s with lots of
mention of 420. They also started a Web site, waldo420.com. ``We
have proof, we were the first, Waldo Steve said. ``I mean, it s not
like we wrote a book or invented anything. We just came up with a
phrase. But it s kind of an honor that this emanated from San
Rafael. Maria Alicia Gaura for the San Francisco Chronicle,
4/20/00 p. A19; and thanks to Noah Cole for the submission

Alternate explanations

There are a variety of other explanations, all much more interesting
than police code, and many plausible. Some are more likely uses
of the 420/hemp connection rather than sources of it, such as the
score for the football game in Fast Times at Ridgement High,
42-0.

Known Myths: It isn t police code (see above). There are 315
chemicals in marijuana, not 420. And although tea time in
Amsterdam is rumored to be 4:20, it is actually 5:30 (Gerhard
den Hollander).
Sixties Songs: For instance, Bob Dylan s famous Rainy Day
Women #12 and 35 is a possible reference, or source --
12x35=420. And Stephen Stills wrote (and Crosby Stills Nash
& Young performed) a song 4+20 (first recorded 7/16/69,
released on Deja Vu 3/11/70) about an 84-year-old
poverty-stricken man who started and finished with nothing.
(Thanks to Sherry Keel 12/6/98.) Dylan aslo mentions 4 and
20 windows in The Balland of Frankie Lee and Judas Priest
(on John Wesley Harding).
Older Verse: But 420 in poetry is older than that - Greg
Keller notes the old nursery rhyme line, four and twenty
black birds baked in a pie. Revelation 5:14 (in the King
James Version of the Christian Bible) reads, And the four
beasts said A-Men. And the four and twenty elders fell down
and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever. (Travis
Spurley 2/15/99) And in Midnight s_Children, Salman
Rushdie wrote, Inevitably, a number of these children failed
to survive. Malnutrition, disease and the misfortunes of
everyday life had accounted for no less than four hundred and
twenty of them by the time I became conscious of their
existence; although it is possible to hypothesize that these
deaths, too, had their purpose, since 420 has been, since time
immemorial, the number associated with fraud, deception and
trickery. (Comet 2/14/98) Comet s best guess is that this
refers to something in Indian mythology or numerology, since
the book is set in India and frequently involves Indian history,
culture, and religion. Given the high interest in Eastern
religion among the phish/dead community, this seems a likely
origin of 420 s current significance.
Temporal Significance: Hands on analog clock at 4:20 look
like position of doobie dangling from mouth Larry in
Tuscan and Alex Mack 5/19/99). Disruptive students are out
of detention and safetly away from school by 4:20, also
rumored to be the time that you should dose to be peaking
when the Dead went on stage Hart. The Waldos were a
group of teens back in the 70 s that lived in San Rafael, CA.
420 was the way they talked about pot in front of teachers,
non-smoking family members etc. Also it was the time of day
they could just go relax, and get baked. (PhunkCellar)
Jamaicans purportedly worked till 4 then walked home then
lit up. They would talk 420 like our parents talked about after
5. That s when partying began Larry in Tuscan). Albert (not
Abbie) Hofmann supposedly first encountered LSD at 4:20
p.m. on 4/19/1943 (Bart Coleman citing Storming Heaven by
Jay Stevens, recommended by Mickey Hart in Planet Drum).
Surrealist painter Miro was born April 20, 1893. And
www.filmspeed.com says the propoganda film Reefer
Madness has a copyright date of April 20, 1936 (i.e. 4/20).
(Patrick Woolford)
Misc: Could be that it comes from hydroponics, the practice
of cultivating plants in water often used by indoor marijuana
cultivators, since 4 is used for H on a calculator (420/H20).
(Nick Lowe 3/30/00) The number 80 (eight) is quatre vingt
(pronounced cah-truh vahn), meaning four (times} twenty.
Dan Nijjar 1/27/00 (No connection yet between the number
80 and pot. A quarter pound is roughly 120 grams, rounding
quarter-ounces to 7.5.) The titanic was supposed to arrive
4/20/1912. (Thanks to RB.) Perhaps the heavy use of vt420
terminals in the Berkeley area is to blame? (BTW, 420 in
binary code is 110100100.)

Ubiquitous?

Now there s a 420 Pale Ale. One of the late-97/early-98 Got
Milk ads featured a character eating cookies without milk and
then passing a sign that reads Next Rest Area 420 miles (as Ross
Bruning). Reportedly, all of the clocks in the movie Pulp Fiction
are stuck on 4:20. Shirts with the number 420 on the red-and-blue
interstate highway shield (Interstate 420?) have show up on the
sitcom Will and Grace (Paul Risenhoover 5/14/99) and in several
videos. UPS labelling software has a 420 postal code legend for
next-day/2-day deliveries (which is how Phish tickets are sent).
(Jack Lebowitz 10/3/98) MTV s 1997 Viewer s Choice Award (for
the MTV Video Awards) was decided by calls to
1-800-420-4MTV. And by May of 1998, the number was
appearing in so many ads (eg Copenhagen 5/14/98 Rolling Stone
p54, Corvette p55 5/98 Car & Driver) that its presence is
presumed to be intentional. Many songs are around 4 minutes 20
seconds long (since many songs fall between 2:30 and 5:30),
including for example Pink Floyd s A Great Day for Freedom (on
The Division Bell, 1994), the Foo Fighters My Hero, and
Smokin from Boston s first album. There have also been some
420 references on The Simpsons. In the re-run episode aired on
April 20th, 1999 at a special time (probably in honor of those
college students staying in the holiday spirit ;-), Homer mentions to
Flanders that Barney s birthday is April 20th. Also, the jackpot sign
in one part of the casino says $420,000. There are a couple less
concrete ones, but these two have to be legit, especially since they
decided to air THAT particular episode on 4/20/99. (Submitted by
Matt Meehan 4/21/99) And (as of Fall 99) the 60 free minutes that
Working Assets Long Distance offers, at the 7 cents per minute
rate, is $4.20 free. There s even a band named 420, and another
names . In the first fifteen pages of Karel Capek s novel War with
the Newts, a man diving under wonder stayed down for four
minutes and twenty seconds. Grant Garstka 1/6/00 At the
suggested retail price ($3.96) and Michigan (6%) sales tax, a deck
of Uno cards costs $4.20. Nic Boris 4:20 marks the first downbeat
of the drums in Led Zeppelin s epic Stairway to Heaven. (Dan
Harris) The bill authorizing force after the World Trade Center
attacks of 9/11/01 passed 420 to 1, and news reports in following
months noted many times that there are (or were then, anyway) 420
airports in the U.S. Allan Morris And don t forget that Adolf Hitler
was born on April 20, macabely celebrated (or at least
referenced) via the Columbine High School shootings.

Phish-related Occurances

Whatever the origin, the number appears frequently... For the
summer 1997 tour, TicketMaster service charges were $4.20. In
the Fall 1997 Doniac Schvice Dry Goods section, a limited edition
Pollack poster printed on 100% hemp is order number 420P. The
Great Went was 420 miles from Boston (former home of Phish).
The official logo includes 4 gills and 20 bubbles (Gringo
11/12/98). As of 6/15/97, including covers and originals, Phish
had performed a total of 420 songs (thought its 486 by 4/24/98).
(David Steinberg). Lawnboy is 420megs of memory. Patrick
Walker Phish s The Vibration of Life underlies a whirling loop
with Seven Beats per second (which makes 420 beats per minute.)
Trey has used the altered line woke up at 4:20 in Makisupa
Policeman, which also often indirectly celebrates 420ing, e.g. by
mention of goo balls. One of the funniest shirts around takes light
jabs at both the 4:20 phenomenon and the rumored evolution
(collapse?) of the Phish.Net (especially rec.music.phish) from
being Gamehendge to Flamehendge, and beyond. The first day of
the Great Went started at 4:20 (with Makisupa Policeman. (The
second day started late, at 4:37.) Noah Cole The first single from
Slip Stitch and Pass was played on WBCN 10/14/97 at 4:20 pm.
An uproar at 12/31/96 can be heard on tape during the 2001, in
response to an enormous digital clock (which was counting down
to midnight) reaching 11:55:40 and reading -4:20. (Yoda)
During the 9-12-00 2001, Trey hits the first riff right at 4:20 into
the intro jam. (Cal 2/25/01) Some mail order tickets for the 1997
New Year s run were in section 420. The first Mass Pike toll
leaving Oswego was $4.20. (Camille Heath ) And the standard
shipping for The Phish Companion through Amazon was
originally $4.20.

420 Shows: Phish performed on April 20 in 1989, 1990, 1991,
1993, and 1994. The first day of the Great Went started at 4:20,
although that was called a soundcheck by Trey after three songs.
The Jazzfest Harry Hood 4-26-96 started at about 4:20 reported by
Trevor. At Big Cypress, David Bowie was playing at 4:20 a.m.
And the one event during the hiatus (10/8/00 - ?) featuring all
four members - for Jason Colton s wedding - was 12/1/01, 420
from: http://www.phish.net/faq/n420.html:

"Computer Space" was first, I believe (1, Troll)

sphealey (2855) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787687)

I believe that "Computer Space" preceeded "Pong" by about 2 years.

sPh

Re:"Computer Space" was first, I believe (1)

Schnapple (262314) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787865)

yeah but PONG was the first successful arcade game, so it gets the credit for inventing the industry, if not the arcade game.

Anyone got a working Atari? (2)

MongooseCN (139203) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787688)

I have an original 2600, but it seems to have degraded or something over time. I can't get it to work anymore. Is there a place that can fix an old Atari?

Re:Anyone got a working Atari? (4, Informative)

Apreche (239272) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787712)

Depends what's wrong with it. Cleaning it out usually works. Open it up and clean all the dust off all the boards and chips. We have a working 7800 here, and quite a few games. Trying to get the 2600 sticks though, they are so much better than 7800 sticks.

Re:Anyone got a working Atari? (0, Offtopic)

fredrik70 (161208) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787881)

The smart thing to do is not always the right thing to do. If you do the right thing, you are damn smart.

I liked that... nice one

Re:Anyone got a working Atari? (1)

synshyne (585540) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787828)

my dad's got an atari up in his attic...one of the joysticks is a bit off but the other is fine and hes got all the games made for it (which was only a handful before nintendo took over popularity). I'm pretty sure he wouldnt mind selling it for a small fee....he tends to keep everything he has...even old record players..i have 2 of those....lets not even mention those horrid things before cassette tapes....yep....

Re:Anyone got a working Atari? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787854)

..i have 2 of those....lets not even mention those horrid things before cassette tapes....yep....

What, you mean LPs?

Re:Anyone got a working Atari? (2)

jonnythan (79727) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787924)

Only a handful? The Atari 2600 had thousands of games...

Re:Anyone got a working Atari? (1)

foog (6321) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787940)

Alicia,

there are over a thousand known titles for the Atari 2600.

http://www.xocolatl.com/carts/ [xocolatl.com]

Brent

Here's where you can get one - and a holiday too (2)

WIAKywbfatw (307557) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787852)

On holiday (in Playa del Ingles, Grand Canary, in the Canary Islands recently) I spotted two fully boxed Atari 2600 systems for sale for 15 Euros (~ GBP10/15USD) each. Also on sale were at least four clone systems at 10 Euros a pop.

I was tempted to buy one - £10 for a piece of history! - but decided not to as I'm sure the one that I had as a kid is lying in the loft right now just aching to be brought down again.

So, if you want an Atari 2600, and a holiday in the sun to boot, visit Playa. The store concerned is a TV, video and music outlet one the first floor of the "Jumbo Centre" shopping precinct.

Enjoy.

Re:Anyone got a working Atari? (3, Interesting)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787948)

eBay is your friend. About a year or two ago, I got two systems, a ton of controllers, and a big pile of games for about $45 or so.

I wonder... (1)

jo42 (227475) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787690)

How many here can say they where Atari alumni?

Or is everyone here a snot-nosed kid with Linux for brains? :)

Re:I wonder... (1)

Anonymous Crowhead (577505) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787763)


Got my atari and apple II almost in the same week. I can still remember my dad saying it was a waste to spend money on the atari and that the apple II was far superior. Course, I was 7 or 8 at the time and did not care too much about computers. That is, until I got my hands on Wizardry.

Re:I wonder... (2)

tommck (69750) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787818)

Definitely! I even scored 1,000,000 on Space Invaders! (Had the T-shirt... kinda outgrew it though.. hehe)

T

Re:I wonder... (0)

zoloto (586738) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787832)

Heh, I had my Atari and loved it.
But I moved from unix to Linux 5 years ago. I think the snot's dripped dry since. :)

Have you played Atari today? (2, Informative)

LordYUK (552359) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787691)

Why yes, yes i have... its on each Neverwinter disk, as well as the first screen you seen when you hit "play".

I am not sure their offical role in the developmental process, however, but I did play Atari today! ;)

Re:Have you played Atari today? (2, Funny)

Ooblek (544753) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787765)

No wonder we haven't seen any new games for the 2600 for so many years. They've been working on Neverwinter Nights all this time!

I wonder when they'll port it to the 2600....

Re:Have you played Atari today? (1)

sfennell90 (562864) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787850)

Probably didn't have too much to do with the development. Interplay was the original publisher. Infogrames manufactured and marketed the game according to the box. So I wonder what Atari did to get their name on it?

The best system of all time.... (1)

Indes (323481) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787692)

Yes, it was one of the best consoles of all time. I remember playing all the great classics. Such a great time, crowding infront of the TV now and playing with a cold beer in hand.. Brings back a lot of sweet memories.. It will live in many hearts forever.

Atari, Today (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787698)

Reissues of arcade classics (centipede, tempest, asteroids) for my PC. Tempest was my favorite, but there was something they had which was like a four screen version of asteroids which looked cool has heck, years ago, but I forget the name of. You'd pretty much need a bigscreen to play it on due to the full use of size and resolution.

Tramiel, IMHO, was the killer of Atari. He still owes a cousin $10K for a book on programming the atari computers.

Forget reissues -- just get MAME (3, Informative)

GuyMannDude (574364) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787873)

Reissues of arcade classics (centipede, tempest, asteroids) for my PC.

Screw the reissues. Just download MAME and you get to play the EXACT SAME game you remember as a child.

...but there was something they had which was like a four screen version of asteroids which looked cool has heck, years ago ...

I always thought a very underrated Atari game was Warlords which was kind of a 4-person cut-throat version of Breakout. You had to defend your "castle" against a bouncing ball and use it to destroy the castles of your 3 opponents. Cool game.

GMD

Re:Forget reissues -- just get MAME (1)

glitchvern (468940) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787942)

warlords is the best game ever. EVVEEER!!!!!!!

Blade runner (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787703)

The Atari logo is also in Blade runner.
Maybe Ridley Scott should get Lucas to go in and replace it with an sony logo.

OT: Blade runner curse (5, Informative)

GuyMannDude (574364) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787821)

The Atari logo is also in Blade runner. Maybe Ridley Scott should get Lucas to go in and replace it with an sony logo.

Interestingly enough, most of the companies that were featured in the futuristic world of Blade Runner have since gone bankrupt. So many, in fact, that this observation has been dubbed The Blade Runner Curse [scribble.com]

GMD

ah yes... (1)

trybywrench (584843) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787706)

i remember when i got a 2600. My dad and I played combat ( the one cardridge had like 20 games ) for hours. Every now and then I'll see some freshman with an Atari shirt and it always makes me smile. Rock on Atari!

Re:ah yes... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787800)

Was combat with the tanks?

For multiplayer, I thought warlords (with the paddles) was the best.

Re:ah yes... (1)

2nesser (538763) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787812)

It's too bad that the freshman are probably fans of the band that takes the atari name and logo.

Nerds or punks, weird how they can share a common logo. =)

Damn Shame about Jaguar (2)

Deltan (217782) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787708)

Jaguar had such potential and like previous Atari systems it was ahead of its time. Unfortunately the developer support just wasn't there. I owned a system and I don't think I can even recall the names of 5 games available for it. Maybe one day they'll make their return as a console maker. For now though they've gone the way of Sega and produce/publish games. Not only for consoles but for PC.

Re:Damn Shame about Jaguar (2)

Junta (36770) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787816)

Not to nitpick, but I think it would be more apt to say that Sega went the way of Atari, since Atari got out of the home console business well before the nails went into Dreamcast's coffin...

Re:Damn Shame about Jaguar (2)

Deltan (217782) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787896)

Trudat, my bad.

Re:Damn Shame about Jaguar (1)

Seekerofknowledge (134616) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787916)

Ahead of it's time? I remember when I first heard about the Jaguar I knew it was going to die. It was coming in at the time that the Saturn and PSX were reigning ( or at least beginning to reign), ie, it was dead before it came out. I remember when Atari was reduced to/ desperate enough to say the jaguar constituted a 64-bit machine. It had two 32 bit processors, and they pawned that off as meaning it was 64 bit. Their slogan was even "Do the math.". I did, and 32 bits + 32 bits equals 32 freaking bits!. Ahead of it's time, yes. 32 bits, no cdrom drive, poor if any 3D hardware support, and joypads that looked more like overly complex numpads. I daresay that it was behind the times, and died accordingly.

in case slashdot gets slashdotted ! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787716)

Atari's 30th Anniversary
Posted by michael on Friday June 28, @07:48PM
from the super-breakout dept.
Atarian writes "Atari was officially incorporated 30 years ago. While many thought Atari started the video game business, that was not correct, it was Magnavox and its Odyssey console designed by Ralph Baer that would be the first. Atari would be the company that would put videogames on the map right from the start back in 1972 with the release of PONG, its coin-op arcade machine first setup in Andy Capps Bar in California, the game was a smash hit and people begin lining up first thing in the morning at Andy Capps just to get inside and play games on this magic box with a TV inside. Atari would then release its VCS (Video Computer System aka The Atari 2600) and launch Atari from its meager $500 starter capital beginnings into a $2 billion dollars in sales monster in 1982. Atari would later fall to the wayside to be replaced by Nintendo, then Sega, and othes that followed. Atari is still around in a small way, and still keeping the name and spirit alive to this very day, 30 years later. 'Have you played Atari today?'"

mirko (198274)
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Atari.com (Score:-1, Troll)
by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 28, @07:50PM (#3787663)
Atari.com [goatse.cx]

[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Re:Atari.com (Score:-1)
by Sexual Asspussy on Friday June 28, @07:52PM (#3787683)
(User #453406 Info | http://www.bme.freeq.com/)
http://www.fuckedcompany.com/den/

remember Digital Entertainment Network? my god. view it at work if you dare. funny fucking shit.


[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Second Post (Score:-1)
by CmdrTaco (troll) on Friday June 28, @07:50PM (#3787666)
(User #578383 Info)
damn, too late for first.

[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Wow (Score:0)
by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 28, @07:50PM (#3787670)
This story is so boring I can't even think of anything to troll on it.

[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Has anyone noticed? (Score:2)
by Apreche on Friday June 28, @07:51PM (#3787680)
(User #239272 Info | http://www.rit.edu/~slr2777/)
The Atari logo is on the Neverwinter Nights box. Feaky eh?

Oh yeah.
Pitfall.
Word.
The smart thing to do is not always the right thing to do. If you do the right thing, you are damn smart. -Me
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

No; however, I have inhaled #@ +420 ; High @# (Score:0)
by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 28, @07:52PM (#3787685)
Be Patriotic, Smoke Amerikan grown marijuana, not treasonous imports !!!!

Courtesy of About 420 [phish.net]

Connotative Use/Meaning

420 is a phreak s (and not just a hippie s) favorite number for a
variety of reasons, or maybe for no reason at all, but colloquially
the number says pot -- let s smoke pot, or someone s smoking
pot, or gee, i really like pot, or time to smoke pot, either by
time (4:20 a.m. or p.m.), date (April 20th), or otherwise (e.g. State
Route 420). April 20th at 4:20 is marked by annual events in
Mount Tamalpais, CA (an informal gathering); Marin Conty, CA
(the 420 Hemp Fest); Ann Arbor, MI (the Hash Bash); and
Washington, D.C. (buildup towards the July 4th Smoke-In).

Original Source(s)

Conventional wisdom: The most common tale is that 420 is the
police radio code or criminal code (and therefore the police call)
in certain part(s) of California (e.g. in Los Angeles or San
Francisco) for having spotted someone consuming cannabis
publicly, i.e. pot smoking in progress; that local cannabis users
picked up on the code and began celebrating the number temporally
(esp. 4:20 a.m., 4:20 p.m., and April 20); that the number became
nationally popularized in the late 1980s and, more ferverently, in
the early- to mid-1990s; and is colloquially applied to a variety of
relaxed and/or inspired contexts, including not only pot
consumption but also a good time more generally (in contrast to
the drug war surrounding).

Conventions are legends: 420 is not police radio code for
anything, anywhere. Checks of criminal codes (including those of
the City of San Francisco, the City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles
County, the State of California, and the federal penal code) suggest
that the origin is neither Californian nor federal (the two best
guesses). For instance, California Penal Code 420 defines as a
misdemeanor the hindrance of use (obstructing entry) of public
lands, and California Family Code 420 defines what constitutes a
wedding ceremony (Marco). One state does come close: The
Illinois Department of Revenue classifies the Alcoholic Liquor Act
under Part 420, and the Cannabis and Controlled Substances Tax
Act are next, under Part 428. (RB 5/19/99)

True story?: According to Steven Hager, editor of High Times,
the term 420 originated at San Rafael High School, in 1971,
among a group of about a dozen pot-smoking wiseacres who
called themselves the Waldos. The term 420 was shorthand for the
time of day the group would meet, at the campus statue of Louis
Pasteur, to smoke pot. ``Waldo Steve, a member of the group who
now owns a business in San Francisco, says the Waldos would
salute each other in the school hallway and say ``420 Louis! The
term was one of many invented by the group, but it was the one
that caught on. ``It was just a joke, but it came to mean all kinds of
things, like `Do you have any? or `Do I look stoned? he said.
``Parents and teachers wouldn t know what we were talking about.
The term took root, and flourished, and spread beyond San Rafael
with the assistance of the Grateful Dead and their dedicated cohort
of pot-smoking fans. The Waldos decided to assert their claim to
the history of the term after decades of watching it spread, mutate
and be appropriated by commercial interests. The Waldos contacted
Hager, and presented him with evidence of 420 s history, primarily
a collection of postmarked letters from the early 70s with lots of
mention of 420. They also started a Web site, waldo420.com. ``We
have proof, we were the first, Waldo Steve said. ``I mean, it s not
like we wrote a book or invented anything. We just came up with a
phrase. But it s kind of an honor that this emanated from San
Rafael. Maria Alicia Gaura for the San Francisco Chronicle,
4/20/00 p. A19; and thanks to Noah Cole for the submission

Alternate explanations

There are a variety of other explanations, all much more interesting
than police code, and many plausible. Some are more likely uses
of the 420/hemp connection rather than sources of it, such as the
score for the football game in Fast Times at Ridgement High,
42-0.

Known Myths: It isn t police code (see above). There are 315
chemicals in marijuana, not 420. And although tea time in
Amsterdam is rumored to be 4:20, it is actually 5:30 (Gerhard
den Hollander).
Sixties Songs: For instance, Bob Dylan s famous Rainy Day
Women #12 and 35 is a possible reference, or source --
12x35=420. And Stephen Stills wrote (and Crosby Stills Nash
& Young performed) a song 4+20 (first recorded 7/16/69,
released on Deja Vu 3/11/70) about an 84-year-old
poverty-stricken man who started and finished with nothing.
(Thanks to Sherry Keel 12/6/98.) Dylan aslo mentions 4 and
20 windows in The Balland of Frankie Lee and Judas Priest
(on John Wesley Harding).
Older Verse: But 420 in poetry is older than that - Greg
Keller notes the old nursery rhyme line, four and twenty
black birds baked in a pie. Revelation 5:14 (in the King
James Version of the Christian Bible) reads, And the four
beasts said A-Men. And the four and twenty elders fell down
and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever. (Travis
Spurley 2/15/99) And in Midnight s_Children, Salman
Rushdie wrote, Inevitably, a number of these children failed
to survive. Malnutrition, disease and the misfortunes of
everyday life had accounted for no less than four hundred and
twenty of them by the time I became conscious of their
existence; although it is possible to hypothesize that these
deaths, too, had their purpose, since 420 has been, since time
immemorial, the number associated with fraud, deception and
trickery. (Comet 2/14/98) Comet s best guess is that this
refers to something in Indian mythology or numerology, since
the book is set in India and frequently involves Indian history,
culture, and religion. Given the high interest in Eastern
religion among the phish/dead community, this seems a likely
origin of 420 s current significance.
Temporal Significance: Hands on analog clock at 4:20 look
like position of doobie dangling from mouth Larry in
Tuscan and Alex Mack 5/19/99). Disruptive students are out
of detention and safetly away from school by 4:20, also
rumored to be the time that you should dose to be peaking
when the Dead went on stage Hart. The Waldos were a
group of teens back in the 70 s that lived in San Rafael, CA.
420 was the way they talked about pot in front of teachers,
non-smoking family members etc. Also it was the time of day
they could just go relax, and get baked. (PhunkCellar)
Jamaicans purportedly worked till 4 then walked home then
lit up. They would talk 420 like our parents talked about after
5. That s when partying began Larry in Tuscan). Albert (not
Abbie) Hofmann supposedly first encountered LSD at 4:20
p.m. on 4/19/1943 (Bart Coleman citing Storming Heaven by
Jay Stevens, recommended by Mickey Hart in Planet Drum).
Surrealist painter Miro was born April 20, 1893. And
www.filmspeed.com says the propoganda film Reefer
Madness has a copyright date of April 20, 1936 (i.e. 4/20).
(Patrick Woolford)
Misc: Could be that it comes from hydroponics, the practice
of cultivating plants in water often used by indoor marijuana
cultivators, since 4 is used for H on a calculator (420/H20).
(Nick Lowe 3/30/00) The number 80 (eight) is quatre vingt
(pronounced cah-truh vahn), meaning four (times} twenty.
Dan Nijjar 1/27/00 (No connection yet between the number
80 and pot. A quarter pound is roughly 120 grams, rounding
quarter-ounces to 7.5.) The titanic was supposed to arrive
4/20/1912. (Thanks to RB.) Perhaps the heavy use of vt420
terminals in the Berkeley area is to blame? (BTW, 420 in
binary code is 110100100.)

Ubiquitous?

Now there s a 420 Pale Ale. One of the late-97/early-98 Got
Milk ads featured a character eating cookies without milk and
then passing a sign that reads Next Rest Area 420 miles (as Ross
Bruning). Reportedly, all of the clocks in the movie Pulp Fiction
are stuck on 4:20. Shirts with the number 420 on the red-and-blue
interstate highway shield (Interstate 420?) have show up on the
sitcom Will and Grace (Paul Risenhoover 5/14/99) and in several
videos. UPS labelling software has a 420 postal code legend for
next-day/2-day deliveries (which is how Phish tickets are sent).
(Jack Lebowitz 10/3/98) MTV s 1997 Viewer s Choice Award (for
the MTV Video Awards) was decided by calls to
1-800-420-4MTV. And by May of 1998, the number was
appearing in so many ads (eg Copenhagen 5/14/98 Rolling Stone
p54, Corvette p55 5/98 Car & Driver) that its presence is
presumed to be intentional. Many songs are around 4 minutes 20
seconds long (since many songs fall between 2:30 and 5:30),
including for example Pink Floyd s A Great Day for Freedom (on
The Division Bell, 1994), the Foo Fighters My Hero, and
Smokin from Boston s first album. There have also been some
420 references on The Simpsons. In the re-run episode aired on
April 20th, 1999 at a special time (probably in honor of those
college students staying in the holiday spirit ;-), Homer mentions to
Flanders that Barney s birthday is April 20th. Also, the jackpot sign
in one part of the casino says $420,000. There are a couple less
concrete ones, but these two have to be legit, especially since they
decided to air THAT particular episode on 4/20/99. (Submitted by
Matt Meehan 4/21/99) And (as of Fall 99) the 60 free minutes that
Working Assets Long Distance offers, at the 7 cents per minute
rate, is $4.20 free. There s even a band named 420, and another
names . In the first fifteen pages of Karel Capek s novel War with
the Newts, a man diving under wonder stayed down for four
minutes and twenty seconds. Grant Garstka 1/6/00 At the
suggested retail price ($3.96) and Michigan (6%) sales tax, a deck
of Uno cards costs $4.20. Nic Boris 4:20 marks the first downbeat
of the drums in Led Zeppelin s epic Stairway to Heaven. (Dan
Harris) The bill authorizing force after the World Trade Center
attacks of 9/11/01 passed 420 to 1, and news reports in following
months noted many times that there are (or were then, anyway) 420
airports in the U.S. Allan Morris And don t forget that Adolf Hitler
was born on April 20, macabely celebrated (or at least
referenced) via the Columbine High School shootings.

Phish-related Occurances

Whatever the origin, the number appears frequently... For the
summer 1997 tour, TicketMaster service charges were $4.20. In
the Fall 1997 Doniac Schvice Dry Goods section, a limited edition
Pollack poster printed on 100% hemp is order number 420P. The
Great Went was 420 miles from Boston (former home of Phish).
The official logo includes 4 gills and 20 bubbles (Gringo
11/12/98). As of 6/15/97, including covers and originals, Phish
had performed a total of 420 songs (thought its 486 by 4/24/98).
(David Steinberg). Lawnboy is 420megs of memory. Patrick
Walker Phish s The Vibration of Life underlies a whirling loop
with Seven Beats per second (which makes 420 beats per minute.)
Trey has used the altered line woke up at 4:20 in Makisupa
Policeman, which also often indirectly celebrates 420ing, e.g. by
mention of goo balls. One of the funniest shirts around takes light
jabs at both the 4:20 phenomenon and the rumored evolution
(collapse?) of the Phish.Net (especially rec.music.phish) from
being Gamehendge to Flamehendge, and beyond. The first day of
the Great Went started at 4:20 (with Makisupa Policeman. (The
second day started late, at 4:37.) Noah Cole The first single from
Slip Stitch and Pass was played on WBCN 10/14/97 at 4:20 pm.
An uproar at 12/31/96 can be heard on tape during the 2001, in
response to an enormous digital clock (which was counting down
to midnight) reaching 11:55:40 and reading -4:20. (Yoda)
During the 9-12-00 2001, Trey hits the first riff right at 4:20 into
the intro jam. (Cal 2/25/01) Some mail order tickets for the 1997
New Year s run were in section 420. The first Mass Pike toll
leaving Oswego was $4.20. (Camille Heath ) And the standard
shipping for The Phish Companion through Amazon was
originally $4.20.

420 Shows: Phish performed on April 20 in 1989, 1990, 1991,
1993, and 1994. The first day of the Great Went started at 4:20,
although that was called a soundcheck by Trey after three songs.
The Jazzfest Harry Hood 4-26-96 started at about 4:20 reported by
Trevor. At Big Cypress, David Bowie was playing at 4:20 a.m.
And the one event during the hiatus (10/8/00 - ?) featuring all
four members - for Jason Colton s wedding - was 12/1/01, 420
from: http://www.phish.net/faq/n420.html:

[ Reply to This | Parent ]

"Computer Space" was first, I believe (Score:2)
by sphealey on Friday June 28, @07:52PM (#3787687)
(User #2855 Info)
I believe that "Computer Space" preceeded "Pong" by about 2 years.
sPh

[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Anyone got a working Atari? (Score:2)
by MongooseCN on Friday June 28, @07:52PM (#3787688)
(User #139203 Info | http://www.mongeese.org/)
I have an original 2600, but it seems to have degraded or something over time. I can't get it to work anymore. Is there a place that can fix an old Atari?

Mongeese.Org [mongeese.org]
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

I wonder... (Score:1)
by jo42 on Friday June 28, @07:52PM (#3787690)
(User #227475 Info)
How many here can say they where Atari alumni?
Or is everyone here a snot-nosed kid with Linux for brains? :)

[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Have you played Atari today? (Score:1)
by LordYUK on Friday June 28, @07:52PM (#3787691)
(User #552359 Info | http://www.threemoons.net/)
Why yes, yes i have... its on each Neverwinter disk, as well as the first screen you seen when you hit "play".

I am not sure their offical role in the developmental process, however, but I did play Atari today! ;)

[ Reply to This | Parent ]

The best system of all time.... (Score:1)
by Indes (indes at localhost.localdomain) on Friday June 28, @07:52PM (#3787692)
(User #323481 Info | http://indesnet.ath.cx/)
Yes, it was one of the best consoles of all time. I remember playing all the great classics. Such a great time, crowding infront of the TV now and playing with a cold beer in hand.. Brings back a lot of sweet memories.. It will live in many hearts forever.

[ Reply to This | Parent ]

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atari was great! (2, Insightful)

protomala (551662) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787719)

At it's time atari was way ahead from anybody else. Too bad Atari brazilian cartridges where low quality and none of the ones I own survived until today, but I can download the roms and play it with stella on linux. Note: downloading roms if you own the original games is legal. (Even that they're broke I still own them)

Re:atari was great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787771)

Since you're discussing roms, I'd like to point out that the standard disclaimer of 'You must delete these roms after 24 hours if you don't own the cartridge' is fradulent.

If you download any rom for a game that you do not own, you're breaking the law. Despite the dellusions of some teenagers on #haxorw00t, you do not get 24 hours to 'try' the rom out.

Granted, no one's going to come after you for roms, are they? Most likely not - this little imaginary clause was thought up by rom sites that think it'll save them from legal beagles. It won't.

The moral of the story? Let's bug the hell out of Atari and other gaming houses to say, "Eh, what the hell - go nuts and spread the love of roms around, now that the bloody thing is 30 years old."

Re:atari was great! (1)

protomala (551662) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787814)

That's why I think software copyright should expire in 25 years. It's more than enought time for you get the bucks and go home :)

Re:atari was great! (1)

Schnapple (262314) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787907)

Let's bug the hell out of Atari and other gaming houses to say, "Eh, what the hell - go nuts and spread the love of roms around, now that the bloody thing is 30 years old."
Why would they do that if they can re-release them every so often and get you to buy old code again? The PSX disc was even a "greatest hits" member. Now they're being ported to PDA's and the GBA.

Atari is such a strong brand people still talk about "their old Atari" like when old people talk about "the war" - as if there were only one.

COMBAT !!!! (0)

kunsan (189020) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787723)

Combat was the shit! there was something special about being able to play 27 different versions of the same game... all on one low capacity cartridge no less.

--cheers

The beauty of simplicity (2)

GuyMannDude (574364) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787922)

Combat was the shit! there was something special about being able to play 27 different versions of the same game... all on one low capacity cartridge no less.

Those old videogames will always have a place in my heart because they were challenging and simple (not to be confused with "easy") at the same time. Today's modern games do not interest me at all. I work hard all day long and when I come home I don't want to read some kind of manual to learn how to play a game. And screw thinking! I just want to lean back in my easy chair and blow up some aliens or eat some power pills.

Combat is a prime example of the beauty of simplicity. Each of those games was pretty straightfoward. It's immediately obvious what you're supposed to do. And if you get bored with game #17 on the cartridge, just click over to another variation. Combat could keep you entertained for months. And it probably took almost no time to code up. I don't understand why today's games don't make an effort to return to maddeningly addictive, simple games (like Tetris). Wouldn't churning out games like this be more profitable then spending months rendering some photorealistic first-person dungeon shoot-em-up?

or am i just showing my age?...

GMD

Atari, Commodore, Apple.... (3, Interesting)

crumbz (41803) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787727)

The golden age of 8-bit computers. What can you say? Not only was Atari the foremost console manufacturer at one point, but they produced a decent home computer. I still have my 800XL and run M.U.L.E. on it occasionally when I need a fix. Or 7 Cities of Gold.
Nothing like nostalgia to remind oneself of one's age.

Re:Atari, Commodore, Apple.... (0)

dev_sda (533180) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787805)

Ahh the meager beginnings. I wonder how many of us really got started programming because of that 800XL with BASIC.

"Dad, what's that?"

"Its a programming language. Its how people write the games that you play."

"How do I do it?"

Yes, I was very depressed when atari lost out. Was very tragic for a 12 year old. I still have a few pictures of me as a 8-11 yo with that beautiful logo plastered on my chest.

/dev/sda

Google cached version (-1)

geeky-troll (552499) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787728)

A Google cached version of the image is cached here [google.com]

There's never been a better time... (1)

koganuts (526569) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787733)

...to wear that Atari shirt [80stees.com] with pride! Happy anniversary Atari!

Re:There's never been a better time... (-1, Flamebait)

i64X (582393) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787803)

You might as well just strap on a shirt that says "I'll never get laid!"

Re:There's never been a better time... (0, Flamebait)

koganuts (526569) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787823)

Already got one. Fuck off. :)

Re:There's never been a better time... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787877)

"This Atari t-shirt is made of 100% pre-shrunk cotton. The Atari logo is made of silk screen."

Made of silk screen, eh? That must be one damn expensive manufacturing process...

Hey guys, the Atari was awesome... (-1)

TRoLLaXoR (181585) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787735)

I still have more fun on my 2600 most of the time than I do on my GameCube (though the Godzilla game is... OH GOD CUMMING... *wh00* the best thing computers have ever been used for).

BMX Derby was awesome, there was a Tron game that wasn't bad, Ghosts & Goblins, Pitfall... Stuff that even today stands on its own when compared to other games' playability. I don't need 128 bits to click a button and make my man skip on alligaotor heads!

ST (1)

Joel Ironstone (161342) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787740)

My atari st was by far my favourite computer. It was my first and it seemed every week or so I would discover something new to do with it. The graphics on the games were better than most PC games until the 486 generation, and the sound is still amazing. I remember gleaming with pride at how much better all of the sierra quest games looked on my ST than the PC screenshots on the box.

Trivial Atari News While The Nation Crumbles (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787742)

courtesy of The Cheney News Network" [cnn.com]

Bush: No more WorldComs
President Bush wants corporate leaders
who cook the books to go to jail, a White
House spokesman said today, as the
government rolls out measures to restore investor confidence in the wake of the WorldCom accounting scandal. The embattled No. 2 long-distance provider is set to start laying off 17,000 employees today.

--------

Meanwhile, elected representative cook the
books on U.S. foreign policy and escape jail.

Thank you and have a happy Canada Day.

Mmmmm... Atari! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787743)

I sat for HOURS mesmerized by Space Invaders.

I remember lining up outside a store when Pac-Man was released for the 2600, then running like hell when the doors opened to snatch a copy out of the box. Those were the days, my friends...

Meet and Greet (2, Informative)

gej (46661) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787745)

If you're in Vegas August 10th or 11th, stop by and meet some of the people who made it happen: cgexpo [cgexpo.com] .

Combat? (2)

jhaberman (246905) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787747)

Now tell me... was there a game that ever had as many game play options as the classic Combat? There were DOZENS of them... planes, tanks, mazes, visible, invisible, bouncing rounds, rapid fire, etc. etc. etc.

I can still remember my little sister and I playing this for HOURS. Good times...

Jason

Re:Combat? (1)

doomicon (5310) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787796)

Combat, hell yes! I can remember playing RiverRaid when I was 10 all summer long! Of course back then, we still went outside;-)

.

Re:Combat? (2)

jhaberman (246905) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787861)

Out... out-side? What is that? You mean like when you're playing QuakeIII on a server not part of your LAN? I just don't understand... :-)

Atari rocks (2)

soulsteal (104635) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787749)


Everyone rejoices the 30th birthday of Atari, home to such great games as Beat 'Em and Eat 'Em! [gamefaqs.com] and E. T. - the Extra Terrestrial [atariage.com] .


Thank god I still have my 7800 in working condition....

Re:Atari rocks (1)

rirugrat (255768) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787913)

Everyone rejoices the 30th birthday of Atari, home to such great games as Beat 'Em and Eat 'Em! [gamefaqs.com] and E. T. - the Extra Terrestrial [atariage.com].

You can't be serious. "ET" and the Mystique "adult" games like "Custer's Revenge" and "Bachelorette Party" were horrible.

And to think how much Purina dog chow I had to eat to get that equally-terrible "Chase the Chuckwagon" game! Or that I actually pre-ordered 2600 "Pac-Man" for $40 at JC Penney's!

Don't get me wrong, I love the classic video games, but not those games!

Chris

those rad 2600's (1)

trybywrench (584843) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787753)

Every now and then one of the freshman wandering around campus will have an Atari shirt on. hehe, I wonder if they have ever seen an old 2600 in real life. The combat game with the ricochet invisible tanks was my fav.

Re:those rad 2600's (1)

trybywrench (584843) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787799)

yeah replying to your own post is lame but stupid me hit submit instead of preview. so i have basically the same comment twice up there some where. god i feel my one point of karma slipping away..

Still going. Nothing outlasts....Atari (1)

NeoSkandranon (515696) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787756)

It put a huge smile on my face to see the Atari logo upon starting Neverwinter Nights. What part did they have in the production of the game?

Excuse for old farts to feel even older (3, Funny)

Allen Varney (449382) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787757)

Show of hands: How many Slashdotters remember seeing that first Pong game? I would have guessed it closer to 1975, but such is my fading memory. I read that Nolan Bushnell installed the first quarter-operated Pong machine in a Bay Area pizza restaurant, and the next day the owners called to complain that it was broken. He went to check it, and found that the reason it wouldn't work was that the coin box was absolutely stuffed full.

You young sprats today can't appreciate what a weird feeling it was to twist a knob and see, up on the black-and-white TV screen, something responding to the motion. It was one of those "everything has changed" moments.

Oh well. Time to order some Geritol.

I love the Atari (2)

rice_burners_suck (243660) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787758)

Ah, those were the good ol' days. When video games were still in cartridges and having an Atari meant you were cool.

I'll never forget how I spent endless hours playing Pac Man, Asteroids, Defender, Tron, or about a zillion other games on the VCS. It is ALL about Atari.

Nintendo, Sega, the 3D0, the Playstation (or PS2) all suck in comparison to the stalwart Atari game console. Now I'm in the mood to sit on my driveway in a lawn chair, enjoy a Negra Modelo, and reminisce about the good ol' days. Oooooooh well.

They were more then games (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787762)

They were also light years ahead of the times with their computer lines as well.

Its too bad the tramiel brohters were morons and let the company die. Mostly due to no foresight and inablity to understand marketing.

Plus the illegal marketing acts of Nitendo helped nail the coffin tight.

Have you played Atari today? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787767)

No.

The Unsung Atari (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787770)

What no one remembers -- probably because they were too busy playing Pong or something else on their 2600 -- was that Atari made computers, too. My father bought an Atari 130XE [geocities.com] back in the *day*. It was a great little box, comparable to the Commodore 64 (remember those?), although with 128K of RAM and a 300 baud modem. The greatest part was that it was primarily geared towards gaming. It wasn't one of these modern behemoths with a fancy video card and all that; the guts of it were those of a video game console. It was programmable in BASIC and the memory had massive constructs for tracking collisions and all sorts of things. It was like a mod chip on your desktop.

Ah, the good old days!

Atari will never die because... (1)

LaserBeams (412546) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787777)

...you can build your own Atari 2600 from off-the-shelf parts (IIRC, you can get most of them from Digikey and similar places)!

Several people are also working on making portable Ataris (and other systems):

http://www.classicgaming.com/vcsp/ - this guy portable-izes lots of systems...

http://www.classicgaming.com/2600ce/ - and this guy is working (slowly) on making a 2600 compatible device that could be mass-produced.

"Have you played Atari - today" (2)

dillon_rinker (17944) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787778)

Do Do Do Do Fa Mi - Re Do

The tune came back INSTANTLY as soon as I saw the words in the story. (sniffle)

Commodore had Bach's Two-Part Invention. Was there a tune associated with Apple II's advertising? (the Lemonade Stand song doesn't count :)

Atari still kicking (1)

HohlerMann (410170) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787779)

Atari [atari.com] is one of the developers working on Test Drive [tdgame.com] , Unreal Tournament 2003 [unrealtournament2003.com] , VRally3 [vrally3.com] , Godzilla, Terminator [terminator-game.com] , Splashdown [gosplashdown.com] , Transworld Surf [transworldgames.com] , MX Rider [mxrider-game.com] , Neverwinter Nights [bioware.com] , and Stuntman [stuntman-game.com] .

Some technical information about the atari 2600 (4, Informative)

nebaz (453974) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787785)

can be found at Warren Robinett's Adventure here [warrenrobinett.com] . Arguably the coolest Atari game of all time, it was one of the first games with an easter egg, and a "Zelda" type interface. Dragons, castles, goblets, and a bat, and it all fit in 4K of memory. The most telling thing about this, they paid him $22,000 a year, and they sold 1 million copies of the game, at $20 a pop.

Atari Computer Camp (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787792)

I went to Atari Computer Camp in the early 1980s. Anyone else?

Re:Atari Computer Camp (3, Funny)

rirugrat (255768) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787844)

I went to Atari Computer Camp in the early 1980s. Anyone else?

"...and there was this one time, at Atari computer camp...I took a WICO joystick and stuck it up my..."

Chris

Aaah, the memories... (1)

CarbonCpy (92013) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787820)

I used to have an old 400 with the tape drive... The tapes never did manage to load properly, but that never really dampened my then-5yr-old enthusiasm for video games... Eventually, the joysticks got to where you couldn't move down in a game, but that didn't stop me, either ("Why would you wanna climb down ladders in Donkey Kong?"). God, I miss that machine...

Anyhow, I managed to pick up a 2600 with 8 games a couple of weeks ago for $10, so I guess a few games of Death Star Assault would be in order for a proper observance, I guess...

Ahh the Atari ST (4, Interesting)

fruey (563914) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787831)

It was a lesser cousin to the Amiga, both being based on the Motorola 68000 chipset also found in old Macs of course. Amiga had the edge on colours and sound chips, but the ST was a workhorse in a lot of recording studios because it had built in MIDI ports with the 5-DIN jacks which you could plug in with your regular keyboard cables needing no adaptor.

I had an Atari ST (first series) with :

  • Single sided, double density 3.5" drive (320KB formatted) which I upgraded myself to a double-sided drive, involving cutting the case because it wasn't an "official" upgrade - my first case mod at just 13 years old...
  • 512Kb RAM
  • TV out
  • Yamaha sound chip (4 x 8bit, 44.1kbz samples simultaneously with a bit of luck)
  • 8Mhz clock speed (I think)
  • 16 colours simultaneously from a palette of 512 (RGB values from 0-7 respectively) which you could up to a full 512 onscreen by changing the palette registers several times then waiting for a vertical blank and looping again)

There were 1, 2 and 4Mb versions as well - studios all had at least 1Mb of RAM because Cubase wouldn't run in 512Kb (except the cracked versions).

Loads of great games were out for it, and some good cracking crews with much less of the pretension of the new WareZ k1dd1ez... they had to snail mail disks amongst themselves pretty much...

I learned a lot of my trade on that Atari ST. It was a 16 bit architecture, ahead of its time for its price, and trained my hands on a mouse, touch typing, and of course coding in STOS Basic and later 68000 assembler (remember devpac, anyone)?

My first computer ever was an Atari 800 (1)

heffel (83440) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787836)

The computer was a hand me down from my uncle,
who got himself a shiny new IBM PC.

He gave me the computer, along with a bunch of game cartridges and a tape drive, an atari basic cartridge and a couple of books about Atari basic.

The first line of code I ever typed
were in Atari Basic, it went something like this:

10 PRINT "HEFFEL";
20 GOTO 10

RUN

wow, just like Wil Wheaton. (1)

Snaggy (140728) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787838)

Like I just said... wow, just like Wil Wheaton. :)

Atari kept me awake all nights long (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787840)

Damn! I can remember ATARI! In 1984 I was a 10 years old kid who played TUTANKHAMON with his brother on Atari 2600 all nights long :) Then in 1985 I got a computer and now I am a self proclaimed guru. It all started with Atari. Memories, memories...

The Atari (1)

Photar (5491) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787845)

Is a sad sad little console.

Atari Jealousy (1)

UCRowerG (523510) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787847)

I remember all I had was a ColecoVision. Good games on that, but I was jealous of all the other kids who had Ataris. I was so thrilled when they finally came out with a cheap plug-in module to play Atari games on the Coleco console. I begged and begged until my parents finally gave in and bought it!

Ahh, the memories..... (1)

MightyPhil (567571) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787849)

Need I really say anymore? I remember when my family got a 2600 for Christmas one year, we were I think the 2nd or 3rd family on the block so well-off.

Pac-Man, Space Invaders and Tennis I believe were the first 3 games we had, and I spent many a sick day home from school playing all of them until my hands were sore.

Happy Anniversary, Atari, you really did make growing up even more enjoyable.

fore more VG history... (2)

paradesign (561561) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787851)

go here Vidgame0 [tripod.com]

its actually my girlfriends collection (and site), but she is a videogame history buff, so theres lots of info here too.

its gunna /. quick so watch out.

Time Warner/AOL/Atari? (2)

Baldrson (78598) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787880)

A friend of mine who worked as a manager in Atari during the biggest revenue period said that the Warner Brothers entry to Atari resulted in a peculiar culture running the show and turning the upper stories of the organization into the biggest party he'd ever seen. Lear Jets, coke and lots of perks. The jokes about "knee-pads" were supplanted with folk lore about how notice of promotion was handed out during that period: You look up at the underside the of the desk while servicing your superior to see the words: "You've been promoted."

still have em (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787883)

I just found my two atari 2600 systems in my closet, still work fine...

Atari ST (4, Interesting)

Rui del-Negro (531098) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787885)

A lot of musicians still have Atari ST computers in their studios. Thom Yorke (of Radiohead) often wears a t-shirt with an Atari logo on stage. And recently Infogrames bought Atari, so we'll probably be seeing a lot of games released under the Atari brand (Neverwinter Nights being the first of those).

RMN
~~~

Not many people know that Sun Microsystems ... (0)

Triumph The Insult C (586706) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787890)

... supported Atari. Don't believe me? Look here: Solaris for the Atari 2600 [ebay.com]

Check out this staggering collection of consoles (0)

bizitch (546406) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787921)

Want the Atari 2600? How about that and everything else made since then? I stumbled across this auction [ebay.com] . Holy cow.

You're all liars. (2)

Gannoc (210256) | more than 12 years ago | (#3787934)

Seriously, how can you stand playing atari games, even on an emulator? I grew up on the 2600, but dear god how times can you jump over a crocodile or watch pacman move sideways?

I can play old mame games, and NES roms, and have a good time, but the 2600 is too primitive to enjoy in our modern nvidia-soaked world.

I still think the Pitfall II music was really cool, though ;)

Funniest Atari Game: Custer's Revenge (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787937)

Do you remember this one? It really got me going. I loved this game. Even my then
wife-to-be thought it was hoot. Check out Custer's Revenge [classicgaming.com] .

Slashdot Gripes 1.01 by pwpbot (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3787944)

posters that spell Microsoft with a or spell it MicroCrap or something posters that glorify a feature that Linux has that BSD or Solaris as had for years and list this reason as the most important reason to switch over posters that say Slackware is better because you have to compile all of the applications for yourself Rob Maldas arrogance frequent spelling and grammar mistakes Im not talking something really obscure or a minor technicallity in English either Im talking substituting loose for lose or theyretheirthere Really easily corrected mistakes Any halfway decent fifth grader could pick up on these errors people that post a mirror to a site that has been Slashdotted which normally would be nice but is hosted on a cable modem that is soon Slashdotted page widening random quashing of posts that dont agree with the Slashdot mindset really annoying sigs unhumorous jokes that have to be explained to the audience If your joke has to be explained its not funny BOYCOTT RIAA and I cant wait to see Episode II all in the same day Rob Maldas childish obsession with legos the Slashdot crew doesnt have any other jobs other than Slashdot yet it seems it was better run when Rob was running it on a Multia in college in his spare time the page limit with the subscription The expulsion of Signal 11 ranting paranoid articles whenever there APPEARS to be a GPL violation with no verification whatsoever Just a bunch of ranting posts about freedom for that matter no verification of articles at all I wish I could count the number of times Slashdots been scammed on two hands but its been so many April Fools articles on Slashdot THESE ARENT FUNNY I wasnt going to explain but whatever Okay lets say you run a website On April Fools you post say ONE or TWO fake pieces of news along with the real news This way some people are fooled By posting ALL fake news and jokes no one falls for the prank no one buys Lokis games but there is a big mystery when they go out of business no NNTP frontend to Slashdot direct links to bugzilla continuing tightening of the troll filters to the point where even normal posts are rejected by some stupid criteria self righteous posters who want everything under the sun to be Open Source even though they have never written a line of code in their life whenever an article on a new scripting language is posted all of the C users chime in but its not as fast as C shortly after all the assembly users chime in assembly is the fastest predictably right after that someone says why dont we all just use machine code anecdotes on your grandmother using Linux to check her email and whatnot this ALONE proves that Linux is better than Windows for ALL uses cultlike devotion to Linux reserve your fanaticism for a church not a kernel someone is not less of a person if they dont use Unix posters who think that BeOS is having a bad moment and will surely rise to defeat all other operating systems posters who think Palm will open the source to BeOS for no reason at all people who think that Amiga isnt dead The new virtual Amiga doesnt count people who think that OS2 isnt dead Ecomstation doesnt count people who bemoan the loss of OS2 while thinking it was a big conspiracy completely IGNORING the fact that IBM did not advertise we all KNOW OS2 was technically superior to Windows at the time You dont have to bedazzle us with tales of running all the latest Windows and DOS applications aside native OS2 apps Weve heard it all before We know it WAS better people who think that this is the last year ever well ever have to hire C programmers because as we all know Java is going to kill it off this is a good one Completely expositionary articles such as Surprised by Weath in which ESR BRAGGED about how rich he was and how he wasnt going to give us any money NO SIR bitchslapping benchmarks that pit say Linux lastest revision against FreeBSD 30 or something old and useless how banner ads for the site only link to other OSDN sites any links to nytimescom when someone writes a comment with H to signify deletions the moderation rtbl meta moderation people that spell Red Hat as RedCrap

-pwpbot
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