The Commodore Amiga, ahead of its time and murdered by corporate mismanagement, etc., remains in fairly common use thanks to an enthusiast community and sheer physical longevity. And now a documentary is here so everyone can know how totally awesome it is, reports Ars Technica's Jeremy Reimer.
Viva Amiga is a wonderful look at the the history of the platform, the people who built it, and the users who loved it. The opening title says it all: "One Amazing Computer. One chance to save the company. One chance to win the PC wars." This message sets the stage nicely for a dramatic and passionate tale.
The trailer's embedded above and you can watch the whole thing on Amazon and other platforms. It's just an hour long so there are no excuses. I'm hitting it right now and will begin reviewing retired engineers' haircuts and Hawaiian shirts forthwith. Read the rest
I'm a huge fan of the Commodore Amiga (the world's first psychedelic computer), but what sucked me in as a youngster were games for it made by the Liverpool game developer Psygnosis. In the late 1980s, they realized what this weird, powerful machine could do and created a distinctive aesthetic for their titles. They hired Roger Dean and other prog-rock geniuses to create game art, and adhered to a unique storytelling vibe: not quite gothic, not quite fantasy, not quite 1970s UK pastoral postapocalypse. Then they soaked it in moody tribal electronic music by the likes of David Whittaker and Tim Wright, years before Sadeness hit the charts.
The games were also brutally difficult, sadistic even, to the point that it made everything all the more mysterious. There were, simply put, not enough wonderful games with names like "Agony", "Leander" and "Shadow of the Beast."
Psygnosis is long defunct, absorbed into Sony and its legacy ascended to Brandhalla. So I hope no-one minds my Psygnosis Game Generator, which combines a random Psygnosisy game name (equal parts concise, literary and antideluvian) with a randomly-picked work of art by Roger Dean and the classic Psygnosis box art wrap. Click "generate" for another—and be sure to share your artifact from a parallel universe. (You can also fiddle with URL parameters if you want to manually pick a title, typeface,painting, etc.)
A Psygnosis Game Generator [boingboing.net]
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The world's first psychedelic computer enters the universal library. And it all runs in the browser, meaning you'll never have to hunt for Workbench disk images again. Read the rest
The Amiga Graphics Archive is where you can find a growing collection of artwork distinctive of the legendary 16-bit home computer. (i.e. 320x200 in 32 colors (64 with half-brite mode (or 4096 with some nasty attribute clash)) from a palette of 4096)
Launched in 1985 the Commodore Amiga boasted graphics capabilities that were unsurpassed for it's time. It featured an intricate collection of custom chips that enabled it to do things that, until then, had been impossible to achieve with other personal computers. This site is dedicated to graphics made with or for the Commodore Amiga home computer.
Pictured above is "The Seeing Angel", by Louis Markoya. Read the rest
Philippe Lang is looking for $140,863 from fellow Amiga enthusiasts, which he'll spend producing a run of new cases for Amiga (and Amiga-alike) computers, in 12 colors of UV-resistant plastic.
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The world's first psychedelic computer is three decades old.
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I love to hang out with online pal Cabel Sasser, founder of Portland software company Panic, whenever our paths cross in real life. But I only just realized that he was an early 90s tracker musician whose work I listened to in England as a kid, on my Commodore Amiga, decades before we met. Read the rest