495 episodes

We cover Atari news, reviews, and a special feature each show for the Atari 8-bit line of computers (400/800/XL/XE/XEGS)

ANTIC The Atari 8-bit Podcast Randy Kindig, Kay Savetz, Brad Arnold

    • News
    • 4.9 • 96 Ratings

We cover Atari news, reviews, and a special feature each show for the Atari 8-bit line of computers (400/800/XL/XE/XEGS)

    ANTIC Interview 413 - Valerie (Atkinson) Manfull, Atari Game Research Group

    ANTIC Interview 413 - Valerie (Atkinson) Manfull, Atari Game Research Group

    Valerie (Atkinson) Manfull, Atari Game Research Group

    Valerie Atkinson was a member of Atari's Game Research Group. Now named Valerie Manfull, she was on the team that designed and programmed the game Excalibur, along with Chris Crawford and Larry Summers. Excalibur was published by Atari Program Exchange in fall 1983. She is also one of the programmes of Ballsong, along with Douglas Crockford. Ballsong is a music and graphics demo program released by Atari, in which a ball bounces on the screen in response to an improvised tune. She was one of the programmers, with Ann Marion, of TV Fishtank, a demonstration of an artificially intelligent fish. (It's unclear if the fishtank program was released anywhere, though it apparently was shown at the 1984 SIGgraph conference.)

    This interview took place on April 22, 2021.

    ANTIC Episode 4 - Chris Crawford

    ANTIC Interview 240 - Douglas Crockford

    TV Fishtank at SIGgraph

    Jim Leiterman describes TV Fishtank

    Chris Crawford describes the development of Excalibur in The Art of Computer Game Design

    Excalibur announced in Atari Program Exchange, fall 1983

    Excalibur review in Atari Connection

    Excalibur at AtariMania

    Video of Ballsong

    • 24 min
    ANTIC Episode 77 - Jason Moore PhD

    ANTIC Episode 77 - Jason Moore PhD

    ANTIC Episode 77 - Jason Moore, PhD
    In this episode of ANTIC The Atari 8-Bit Computer Podcast… Jason Moore joins us to discuss his atariprojects.org Web site and we discuss all the news rocking the Atari 8-bit world.
    READY!
    Recurring Links 
    Floppy Days Podcast 
    AtariArchives.org 
    AtariMagazines.com 
    Kevin’s Book “Terrible Nerd” 
    New Atari books scans at archive.org 
    ANTIC feedback at AtariAge 
    Atari interview discussion thread on AtariAge 
    Interview index: here 
    ANTIC Facebook Page 
    AHCS 
    Eaten By a Grue 
    Next Without For 
     

    • 1 hr 12 min
    ANTIC Interview 412 - Linda Brownstein, Atari VP Special Projects

    ANTIC Interview 412 - Linda Brownstein, Atari VP Special Projects

    Linda Brownstein, Atari VP Special Projects

    As I've researched Atari and it's 8-bit computer projects over the years, one name has come up over and over again, attached to the most interesting projects. Linda S. Gordon. Executive Director of Atari Computer Camps. Linda. Executive Producer of The Magic Room, Atari's movie about its camps. Atari's collaboration with Club Med to offer computer labs at vacation destinations — Linda again. Atari Club, the fan group that published Atari Age magazine - Linda launched that. More recently, in my interview with Ann Lewin-Benham of the Capital Children's Museum, Linda's name came up once again -- she was the liaison between Atari and the museum. Linda worked on the most interesting projects.

    Today, her name is Linda Brownstein. Linda joined Atari in December 1980 as Vice President of Special Projects, where she worked on most of  the projects that I mentioned before. In October 1983 she became Senior Vice President in Atari's  Education group. She left the company in July 1984 after Jack Tramiel took over the company.

    This interview took place on April 21, 2021.

    ANTIC Interview 78 - Manny Gerard, The Man Who Fired Nolan

    ANTIC Special Episode - Atari Summer Camp

    ANTIC Interview 410 - Ann Lewin-Benham, Capital Children's Museum

    ANTIC Interview 185 - Ted Kahn

    Atari Computer Camps — The Magic Room

    Video version of this interview

    • 1 hr
    ANTIC Interview 411 - Mark Simonson, Atari Artist and Font Designer

    ANTIC Interview 411 - Mark Simonson, Atari Artist and Font Designer

    Mark Simonson, Atari Artist and Font Designer

    Mark Simonson used his Atari computers who create art that was published in magazines in the 1980s, including a portrait of Nolan Bushnell that was commissioned by TWA Ambassador, an inflight magazine; a colorful street scene for the cover of Minnesota Monthly, the magazine of Minnesota Public Radio; and a juggler for the cover of Credit Union Advantage magazine, among others.

    Professionally, Mark is a font designer. He created Atari Classic, a free TrueType font family for modern computers that looks like the Atari 8-bit screen font. Today, you'll see Atari Classic used in many Atari emulators, web sites, the WUDSN IDE, and elsewhere.

    This interview took place on April 15, 2021.

    Mark's Atari reminisce blog post
    Mark's Mac/Atari Fusion site

    Mark's Nolan Bushnell portrait in Hi-Res Magazine Issue 1

    A wild Mark appears on AtariAge

    FujiNet

    This interview on YouTube

    • 1 hr 1 min
    ANTIC Interview 410 - Ann Lewin-Benham, Director of Capital Children's Museum

    ANTIC Interview 410 - Ann Lewin-Benham, Director of Capital Children's Museum

    Ann Lewin-Benham, Director of Capital Children's Museum

    Ann Lewin-Benham was executive director of the Capital Children's Museum in Washington, D.C. The museum was home to the first public-access computer center in the nation’s capital, and indeed, one of the first in the United States. In 1981, Atari and Apple each donated dozens of computers to the museum. The exact number is unclear, but 30 is the number I've seen most often for Atari's contribution.

    The computer lab was called The Future Center. There, the museum offered computer literacy classes for people of all ages, from Compu-Tots for preschoolers, to programming classes for adults, there was even a computer literacy session for members of Congress. It also used the lab for birthday parties. (Last year, I interviewed a woman who had her 8th birthday party at the museum.) The museum used more of its computers in its exhibit on communication. It established a software development laboratory, called Superboots, in which developers created custom softare for the museum, and one product that was released commercially: the graphics program PAINT!

    In a 1982 article titled A Day At The Capital Children's Museum, Melanie Graves described the scene:

    "My twelve-year-old friend Sarah and I went to the museum to explore the computers. There are several dozen computers scattered throughout the building which are used for exhibits, classroom teaching and the development of educational software...

    A machine that calls itself "Wisecracker" is the noisest of the computers that beckon visitors to the Communication exhibit. "My-name- is-Wise-crack-er," it says in a monotone, "Come-type-to-me." This message repeats endlessly until someone types at the keyboard or turns off the computer. "Hello, how are you?" Sarah typed, and pressed the return key. "Hel-lo-how-are-you," the machine’s voice responded. Sarah typed for awhile longer and then proclaimed, "It sure is dumb, but its voice is kind of cute."

    The computer next to Wisecracker has a data base program that asked Sarah her name, where she came from, and other questions. It informed her that she was the thirty-seventh person from Virginia to type in data that day... "Fifty-five percent of the people who came here were girls," she told me. Next to the data base, a computer is set up with a music program. Sarah pressed some random keys, causing notes to sound. At the same time, the letter names of the notes appeared on the keys of a piano that was displayed on the screen.

    There is also a Teletext terminal that tells inquirers about weather predictions, and news releases, the latest acquisitions at the public library, local cultural events and whatever else has been entered into the data base for that day...

    After playing with Teletext, Sarah and I went to the Future Center, a room equipped with twenty Atari 800s. On weekdays, the classroom is available to school groups ranging from prekindergarten to high school. On weekends, families arrive for courses in programming. Classes have also been created for working people, senior citizens, community groups, congressional spouses and other special interest groups. This summer more than sixty students from the Washington, D.C. public schools attended one of two free month-long computer camps at the museum."

    This interview took place on April 2, 2021.

    Ann's web site

    Museum in Atari ConnectionVolume 1 Number 4

    A Day At The Capital Children's Museum
    Computers And Kids, article by Edith Holmes in ASIS Bulletin, June 1981
     
    Compu-tots and other joys of museum life by Peter Hirshberg,  Instructional Innovator, Sept 1981
     
    Description of donation in "Atari in Action Atari Institute Newsletter" Fall 1982

    ANTIC Interview 391 - Tracy Frey, Atari Birthday Girl

    ANTIC Interview 407 - Guy Nouri, Interactive Picture Systems

    National Children's Mus

    • 1 hr 32 min
    ANTIC Interview 409 - Ed Fries: Romox Ant Eater, Princess and Frog, Sea Chase

    ANTIC Interview 409 - Ed Fries: Romox Ant Eater, Princess and Frog, Sea Chase

    Ed Fries: Romox Ant Eater, Princess and Frog, Sea Chase

    Ed Fries programmed three games for the Atari 8-bit computers, which were published on cartridge by Romox: Sea Chase, Ant Eater, and Princess and Frog. His forth game for Romox, Nitro, was unfinished because the company went out of business before Ed was done coding it.

    Years later, Ed became vice president of game publishing at Microsoft where he oversaw the creation of the Xbox. In 2010, Ed released Halo 2600, a demake of the Halo video for the Atari 2600. In 2013, he coded an Atari 2600 version of Rally X.

    This interview took place on March 11, 2021.

    After the interview, Ed sent me the assembly language source code to five games, which he graciously released as open source. You'll find the code for Sea Chase, Ant Eater, Princess and Frog, the unreleased/finished game Nitro, and a chess game, at GitHub.

    AtariMania's list of Ed Fries' games

    2015 Atari Compendium Interview

    Ed's Blog

    Ed on Twitter

    This interview at Youtube

    ANTIC Interview 76 - Tim McGuinness, founder of Romox

    The Paper Computer Unfolded

    Sea Chase source code

    Ant Eater source code

    Princess and Frog source code

    Nitro source code

    Chess source code
     

    • 1 hr 2 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
96 Ratings

96 Ratings

TwoThumbBob ,

Get your 8 bit out of the closet

The podcast is a joy to listen to. I learn new things every show and relive great memories. I put my 130xe away years ago because floppies and hardware were getting scarce. I will be setting it back up now that I know about all the new hardware that makes this wonderful machine useful again. Thanks guys, will be a longtime listener.

gyachts ,

Love reliving my old 8-bit days

Love the show, got a late start and found it after I started building up my 8-bit Atari computer collection again. I really enjoy the review and interviews.

Dneedham ,

Thoroughly enjoyable

I'm binge listening to all of the episodes now. Great show and brings back a lot of fond memories of my 800xl. Thanks and keep up the great work!

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