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John Pyper
"We got a bad ass over here..." --Neil deGrasse Tyson
"We got a bad ass over here..." --Neil deGrasse Tyson

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On this day:
At 24th June of 1990, Commodore released the Amiga 3000, the first 32-bit Amiga. It features improved processing speed, improved rendering of graphics, and a new revision of the operating system. It is the successor to the Amiga 2000. It had an original price of $3,495.00.

If you were a computer enthusiast in the late 1980s or early 1990s, the chances are that one of your objects of desire would have been a Commodore Amiga. These machines based on the 68000 line of processors and a series of specialized co-processors offered the best compromise between performance and affordability at the time, with multitasking, a GUI, and graphics capabilities that were streets ahead of their competition.

The Amiga story is littered with tales of what might have been, as dismal marketing and lacklustre product refreshes caused it to lurch from owner to owner and eventually fade away from the mainstream in the mid 1990s. But it’s been one of those products that never really died, as a band of enthusiasts have kept a small market for its software and hardware alive.

Released in 1990 the Amiga 3000 was considerably more powerful than previous Amigas and was marketed as a high-end workstation. The Amiga 3000 is considered to be one of the best engineered Amigas, with a very low failure rate. There was a 16 MHz model available for a brief time, as well as the 3000UX (Unix) model and the extremely rare Amiga 3000T (Tower) model which we have at the museum.

The 3000 came with Kickstart 2.0 but the original models had it load the operating system from the hard disk, much like the Amiga 1000 used 'Kickstart' disks.The 3000 shipped with 2MB of RAM but was expandable onboard by using ZIP RAM, not exactly the most popular choice. An enhanced version, the Amiga 3000+, with the AGA chipset and an AT&T DSP3210 signal processing chip was produced to prototype stage in 1991.

Although this system was never released, Commodore's negotiations with AT&T over the proper way to bundle their VCOS/VCAS operating system software in a personal computer environment helped Apple Computer deliver their Quadra 660 and Quadra 840 AV-series Macintosh systems, two years later. Instead of the Amiga 3000+, Commodore replaced the A3000 six months behind schedule, in the fall of 1992, with the A4000.

In a world dominated by a monoculture of Intel based desktop computers it’s interesting to look back to a time when there was a genuine array of choices and some of them could really compete. As a consumer at the start of the 1990s you could buy a PC or a Mac, but Commodore’s Amiga, Atari’s ST, and Acorn’s ARM-based Archimedes all offered alternatives with similar performance and their own special abilities.

Each of those machines still has its diehard enthusiasts who will fill you in with a lengthy tale of what-if stories of greatness denied, but maybe such casualties are best viewed as an essential part of the evolutionary process.

#PC #Computer #Onthisday
#90sTechnology #RetroComputing
#Oldschool #Commodore #32Bit
#Retro #Amiga #CommodoreAmiga
#Vintage #Amiga3000 #Technology


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I like reading stories about how things we take for granted came to be. This one is no exception. Interesting read. This is the battle of the microchips that power computers.

Obviously we know that Intel won that battle with the 8086 line, but today we are still using that same architecture that is 40+ years old, and we are seeing the limitations of that architecture. Sure, we add extensions and whatnot to expand it as much as possible, but the x86 line is growing old and tired.

If Intel, AMD, ARM, or some other knight in shining armor would make some kind of breakthrough chip technology that is blazingly fast, multi-core with multi-threads on each core, higher L1/L2/L3 on chip cache, high IPC, and all the fancy stuff we want in a chip, then a true revolution in computing will be among us. I don't mind a CPU the size of AMD's EPYC or even slightly larger if it means the common end user will get the power and efficiency from a CPU that they need.

The open source community could write an efficient low level and fairly transparent x86 emulator that could run at the operating system's kernel level or something along the lines like Rosetta when Apple switched from IBM's PowerPC to Intel's x86. 

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Here's our newest playlist of great music. Please check it out and let me know what you think. 
To all of our friends, family, and fellow music lovers,
MaDpAGaN11 YouTube Channel has a NEW VOCALOID HITS LIST for your listening and viewing pleasure

Great Vocaloid Hits 21
The URL Below:

Please enjoy this Collection List of Vocaloid Favorites
This List has English VX4 as well as IA and Luo Tianyi Videos.

AS ALWAYS, This Channel is not now nor ever will be monetized. We do this for the love of the music.
We claim NO ownership to art, videography, music or any other part of these great songs.
Should you have a video on this list or another list and wish it removed please post to me or message me on YouTube and I will comply.
Visit all of our playlists, especially our Best of Vocaloid Series at MaDpAGaN11 YouTube Channel!
Thank you so much for your support!

B. and 中村由衣 (Nakamura Yui)
The MaDpAGaN11 MOB!

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(via +Guy Kawasaki​ on Twitter)

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At 21st June of 1980, Commodore released the VIC-20, which had 3.5 KB of usable memory and was based on the MOS Technology 6502 processor. Magazines became available which contained the code for various utilities and games. A 5¼" disk drive was available, along with a cassette storage system which used standard audio cassette tapes. Also available were a number of games, a color plotter which printed on 6 in (152 mm) wide paper tape, a graphics tablet (the KoalaPad). A TV screen served as monitor. The VIC-20 became the first computer to sell 1 million units.

In 1980, Commodore introduced the VIC-20, a computer more clearly designed for a broad audience than its previous PET. The VIC-20, like the TRS-80, had its circuitboard in the same rectangular unit as its keyboard. It was small enough to hold comfortably on the lap, and was designed to be connected to a television set.

During a European conference, Commodore president Jack Tramiel received reports of impending Japanese movement in the computer market. This cast a great shadow of fear over Tramiel's heart. The Japanese had a nasty habit of waiting until a piece of merchandise reached a commodity status in the mass market.

They would then pool their collective resources to produce the merchandise at dirt-low costs, and dump their cheaply produced goods in foreign markets. This would catch the current market leaders, who were often the creative entrepreneurs in the industry, by surprise.

Unable to compete at the price levels dictated by their Japanese competitors, these market leaders were usually doomed. Tramiel knew of this fact intimately. It had happened to Commodore's Typewriter and Adding Machine business before. He feared it would happen to his computer business now.

Although its white plastic case was a little crude and toy-like, its price of $299 made it enormously popular; it was the first model of personal computer to sell more than one million units (Smarte, 380). This was driven largely by its use to play games. ROM cartridges could be plugged easily into the slot at the back of the keyboard unit, giving the computer an arcade-style game without the need to type commands.

This association with entertainment, fostered as much by its insubstantial toy-like case as by its relative lack of processing power, helped inspire game machines for the home from companies such as Nintendo and Sega. When Commodore's somewhat more powerful follow-up to the VIC-20, the Commodore 64, appeared in 1982, it became even more popular than the VIC-20.

However, despite the new sober grey colour of its otherwise nearly identical plastic case, the Commodore 64 was also associated closely with games. The simple rectangular slab design of Commodore's keyboard computers was no longer used by the late 1980s, and Commodore's years of success ended as separate physical design standards emerged for personal computers and for home arcade game machines.

The importance of the Commodore VIC-20 to computer history can hardly be understated. More computer companies all over the world were laid waste and cast aside by this humble little machine than any other computer can claim.

#VIC20 #Commodore #Onthisday
#HomeComputer #Computer #Retro
#Vintage #80sTechnology #RetroComputing
#Oldschool #8Bit #Technology


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On this day:
At 20th June of 1997, "Batman & Robin" premiered in theaters. "Batman & Robin" is an American superhero film based on the DC Comics characters Batman and Robin. It is the fourth and final installment of Warner Bros.' initial Batman film series. The film was directed by Joel Schumacher and written by Akiva Goldsman. It stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, George Clooney, Chris O'Donnell, Alicia Silverstone, and Uma Thurman. While it performed modestly at the box office, making $238.2 million worldwide against a production budget of $125 million, the film was a critical failure and is often considered to be one of the worst films of all time. It is also the lowest grossing live-action Batman movie to date. Due to the film's negative reception, Warner Bros. cancelled a sequel, "Batman Unchained", and rebooted the film series with "Batman Begins" in 2005.

Campy and silly, Joel Schumacher's "Batman & Robin" is widely considered the worst Batman film and one of the more disappointing movies ever made. The movie is a departure from the earlier films in the franchise (even its predecessor "Batman Forever") and doesn't take the hero seriously. It is as close as any of the films come to the camp of the 1960s Adam West TV show, and it's like watching a live-action Saturday morning cartoon.

Batman (George Clooney) and Robin (Chris O'Donnell) are now partners in the war against crime. Now, two new, polar opposite threats have emerged to challenge the dynamic duo: Poison Ivy (Uma Thurman), the seductive environmentalist with the power over plants that is aided by the mindless muscle Bane, and Mr. Freeze (Arnold Schwarzenegger), the tragic scientist with advanced cryogenic weaponry. Even with the help of Batgirl (Alicia Silverstone), can our heroes put these villains on ice?

Seeing Batman and Arnold Schwarzenegger duke it out is reason enough to see "Batman & Robin." But while Schwarzenegger as Mr. Freeze carries impressive weapons and strikes a menacing figure, his lines are cheesy instead of threatening. In fact, cheesier lines haven't been heard since Adam West played Batman.

George Clooney makes a likable super hero. Unfortunately, he's not really Batman. Batman is tormented by inner demons. George Clooney never stops smiling. Even though Adam West's lines as Batman were unbelievable, he still said them with a straight face, as if they were serious. George Clooney says even serious lines with a cheesy grin. He's believable as rich playboy Bruce Wayne, but, even though his attempt to get Batman to lighten up was a noble idea, the character should be played with some darkness.

Still, there's a great warmness between Clooney and Michael Gough, who plays Alfred the butler, and between Clooney and Chris O'Donnel. Bruce Wayne's personal life is in turmoil. Alfred, his friend and mentor, is dying, and Bruce must cope with the idea that he might lose him. Robin is tired of standing in Batman's shadow and begins to jeopardize the Dynamic Duo's partnership. Both subplots are well acted and touching.

The plot is completely preposterous, but that's to be expected from a movie based on comic books. It's still entertaining. The gadgets are impressive, the action scenes are well done, and the Batmobile, as always, is cool. The lead actresses, Elle MacPherson, Alicia Silverstone, and Uma Thurman, are talented and very easy on the eyes. Uma Thurman, as the evil Poison Ivy, possesses a magic powder that will make men do anything for her.

The dialogue is so cheesy and the acting so hammy, the only thing left to do is slap it between two slices of bread with a bit of mustard. With one of those little olives on the toothpick stuck on top. The silly over the top action and fight sequences combined with rather colourful sets make the movie feel more like a Saturday morning cartoon than a movie. But you know what ? It's not that bad. Not saying it's good, but it's certainly not as bad as people make it out to be. "Batman & Robin" it's light entertainment and worth a look.

#BatmanAndRobin #Batman
#GeorgeClooney #ChrisODonnell
#UmaThurman #AliciaSilverstone
#ArnoldSchwarzenegger #90sMovies #Movies
#FantasyFilm #ActionAdventure
#AdventureFilm #Fantasy #ActionFilm
#Onthisday #MovieReview


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At 19th June of 1998, "The X Files: Fight the Future" opened in the U.S. David Duchovny (FBI Special Agent Fox Mulder) and Gillian Anderson (Agent Dana Scully) starred. And they fought despicable demons who were employed by the government, just as they have had to do so often in the TV series. "The X Files: Fight the Future" opened in 2,629 theaters nationwide, grossing a not-so-despicable $30.14 million the first weekend. Although some enjoyed the style and effects of the film, others found the plot confusing and viewed it as little more than an extended episode of the series. A sequel, entitled "I Want to Believe", was released ten years later.

"The X-Files", also known as "The X-Files: Fight the Future" (used in all advertising but not in the film) is an entertaining, well-made but convoluted movie, spun-off from the cult sci-fi series that aired on Fox fromci 1993 to 2002. The film was produced mainly between the show's fourth and fifth seasons, and released between the fifth and sixth, picking up where the fifth season finale left off.

In 35,000 B.C., during the Ice Age in what would eventually become North Texas, a Neanderthal man encounters an alien creature in an ice cavern, and though the caveman successfully stabs the extra-terrestrial to death, it oozes a black, oil-like blood that infiltrates and consumes the caveman's body.

In modern times, at the same location, a group of schoolboys find the old caverns near their new subdivision. One of the boys climbs down into the tunnels, and encounters the same alien oil that similarly consumes him, turning his eyes opaque like John Agar in "The Brain from Planet Arous". A trio of firemen climb down, and they're attacked, too.

Later, FBI agents Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) are investigating a bomb threat in Dallas, in a sequence reminiscent of the 1995 Oklahoma City Bombing. Iconoclast Mulder, unhappy that his X-Files Investigative Unit has been shut down, insists on thinking outside the box by investigating the building across the street from the perceived threat, and in a scene too coincidental to be believed, he finds the bomb in a converted vending machine. Fox and Scully successfully evacuate the building seconds before the bomb obliterates it.

Later however, back in Washington, Mulder and Scully are made the fall guys when it's learned that four victims remained in the building: a schoolboy and three firemen. Mulder is tipped off by a doctor/doomsday author Alvin Kutzweil (Martin Landau) that the four bodies were already dead, that the bomb was part of a larger plot to destroy evidence of an alien virus.

The discovery of alien-mutated corpses eventually send Mulder and Scully on a globe-trotting effort to stop the alien virus before it can be launched, apparently with the aide of The Syndicate, the secret government group including such familiar characters from the show as the Cigarette-Smoking Man (William B. Davis) and the Well-Manicured Man (John Neville). In the movie Armin Mueller-Stahl also appears as Conrad Strughold, its leader.

"The X-Files" is not a cheap TV spin-off like "Munster Go Home!" or "McHale's Navy Joins the Air Force". It reportedly cost somewhere in the neighborhood of $66 million, and the money is up there on the screen. The climax takes place in Antarctica, in a massive man-made laboratory with a humungous UFO buried under it. It's all quite spectacular, visually something more along the lines of an Alien movie than an episode of the TV X-Files.

The story is involving, interesting, and frequently suspenseful. This film has a great deal of depth, power, and insight. The director kept this film true to what the "X-Files" is all about. Some questions are answered and more question come up so don't blink or you will miss something! It is the old game of give and take!

#TheXFiles #DavidDuchovny
#GillianAnderson #90sMovies #Movies
#SciFi #SciFiFilm #Thriller
#CrimeDrama #Drama #DramaFilm
#Onthisday #MovieReview

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Last stop before my destination...I think. Finally off the turnpike. The tolls are highway robbery...literally.

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I'm done for the night. I won't make Pennsylvania right now. Maybe if I take a nap for a couple hours. Whatever this mountain pass is that I'm on, it's 74F here, and I think I'm only about half way up the pass. It's been interesting so far, I'll tell you that much. Glad it's almost over. 

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I like these little mini mall type things out in the middle of nowhere. First stop in Ohio. 
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