Thread: Take Me Back :(
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Old 18 January 2008, 13:02   #73
Needs a life

chiark's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: England
Posts: 1,613
Agreed, but then I don't have the vision to work out what would be as revolutionary as the Amiga was in the early 80s when it was first conceived.

I still find it amazing when you consider the jump from the 6502-based machines (Vic 20/64/etc) with fairly simple media to the all singing, all dancing Amiga with its holy triumvirate of Paula, Agnus and Denise taking the strain off the processor. Other machines did have display and sound chips, but nowhere near as well integrated with the rest of the system and able to run largely without the supervision of the processor. For example, the copper and its list - simple as it was - meant that the display was largely taken care of without any significant processor use.

I'll never forget seeing Juggler running in a shop window one grey winter's day. At the time I was hacking around with a C128 and pleased just to be able to run 80 column mode on the 1901 monitor... but juggler? Wow.

I've never been a big gamer but rather have always been interested in making things do as much as they can, and that to me was the beauty of the Amiga. Whether it was the OS, or the hardware, you stood a chance of understanding everything from the bits up (eg bit 6, $bfe001 = left mouse button state, the simplicity of the mountlist and later devs directory...)

I guess the real issue is that revolutionary power coupled with simplicity is no longer possible - we're at the point that a revolution will dictate more complexity.

Perhaps the successor to the Amiga should be powerful enough to do proper multimedia, and have multimedia at its core so be able to sync to external video sources, etc, but be fundamentally understandable.

Sure Linux is understandable in a way that Windows never will be, but to me the whole gnome/kde/wm proliferation does more harm than good.

It's a shame the wii isn't an open platform, or a general purpose computer as well - just as the Amiga was. nintendo's approach of tying down everything to protect their brand is almost diametrically opposite to the real Amiga ethos. Whether commodore intended it or not, people took the machine as theirs, then set about making it sing in whatever way they saw fit. Commodore were certainly complicit in this with the publication of the hardware reference manuals, even if advise was not to hit the hardware directly... Yeah, right

Perhaps a more general purpose version of the gp2x is the spiritual successor, with AROS on it...

Ah, this nostalgia is brilliant. I've just set up the 20MB hard drive and A500 that I bought from ebay that really cuold have been my old a500 setup, and the noise of a Seagate MFM drive starting up took me right back . i suspect what I really want is to be the age when discovery was such fun, and the Amiga (computer, and also noting that Amiga is spanish for girlfriend) was a perfect fun thing to discover.
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