The Falcon's confusing history

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AdamK
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Re: The Falcon's confusing history

Postby AdamK » Thu Feb 02, 2017 9:56 pm

AdamK wrote:
calimero wrote:
AdamK wrote:GEM was not that great. Maybe in 1985, yes, but world moved on and GEM froze. I think DRI didn't want to invest in it after they lost Apple suit, and Atari did not have manpower to push it forward.

but how than you explain one or three man behind MagiC or Geneva? Were they Supermans? :D

Probably ;) But there was no real improvements, and nor MagiC or Geneva implement everything that GEM (and later MiNT - I'm talking about before Atari let it go) included.

AdamK wrote:No not really, by any count. ST line was introduced in 1985 and officially ended in 1993. That is 8 years tops, but really, after 91 (92 tops) ST line was dead in the water, and Falcon did nothing to help it.

calimero wrote:But there was lot of life in ST even past official dismiss... ST was truly remarkable piece of equipment!

No, there was not. Your view is skewed. Almost all commercial software development for ST stopped. Most of the users left the platform. No mass produced new hardware since.
Atari: Falcon030 + CT60 + SuperVidel + SvEthlana, TT, 520ST + 4MB ST RAM + 8MB TT RAM + CosmosEx + SC1435, 1040STFM + UltraSatan + SM124, 1040STE 4MB ST RAM + 8MB TT RAM + CosmosEx + NetUSBee + SM144 + SC1224, 65XE + U1MB + VBXE + SIDE2, Jaguar, Lynx II, 2 x Portfolio (HPC-006)

Adam Klobukowski [adamklobukowski@gmail.com]

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Re: The Falcon's confusing history

Postby AdamK » Thu Feb 02, 2017 9:56 pm

AdamK wrote:
AdamK wrote:
calimero wrote:but how than you explain one or three man behind MagiC or Geneva? Were they Supermans? :D

Probably ;) But there was no real improvements, and nor MagiC or Geneva implement everything that GEM (and later MiNT - I'm talking about before Atari let it go) included.
calimero wrote:
But there was lot of life in ST even past official dismiss... ST was truly remarkable piece of equipment!

No, there was not. Your view is skewed. Almost all commercial software development for ST stopped. Most of the users left the platform. No mass produced new hardware since.
Atari: Falcon030 + CT60 + SuperVidel + SvEthlana, TT, 520ST + 4MB ST RAM + 8MB TT RAM + CosmosEx + SC1435, 1040STFM + UltraSatan + SM124, 1040STE 4MB ST RAM + 8MB TT RAM + CosmosEx + NetUSBee + SM144 + SC1224, 65XE + U1MB + VBXE + SIDE2, Jaguar, Lynx II, 2 x Portfolio (HPC-006)

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Re: The Falcon's confusing history

Postby calimero » Fri Feb 03, 2017 7:00 am

AdamK wrote:No, there was not. Your view is skewed. Almost all commercial software development for ST stopped. Most of the users left the platform. No mass produced new hardware since.

You can go at http://milan.kovac.cc/atari/software/ and type e.g. "1994" in search and you will see what software were released in 1994. (I did not finish with cataloging but...)
German C't magazine keep writing about Atari well beyond 1993.
Yes, there was no mass produced hardware since there was never true ST successor.
It is shame that Falcon (or Sparrow) did not come to market sooner with lower price and that true Falcon did not at all come to market.
I really would like to know when these project starts (Sparrow, Texas Falcon) and how they go... Is it possible that project start in December 1991 and that they have finished PCB with chips until 1993?

---
John Horton is mentioned by Dad Hacker in his blog: http://www.dadhacker.com/blog/?p=1383

"To run Unix effectively we needed some hardware that was very fast, that was simple enough to put into a minor spin of the ST’s memory controller with little project risk, and that would still provide some kind of memory relocation and protection. The ability to have separate address spaces to isolate processes would be good, too.

“If you can come up with something that takes about a gate delay, I’ll put it in,” said John, the memory controller guy. He seemed dubious, but willing to listen.

I went for a bunch of walks.

...

John Horton, the memory chip guy, actually did this hardware for the Mega ST; I don’t know if it’s documented, or if he had to sneak it in or not. I do know that it was not used for Unix in my time at Atari; "...
using Atari since 1986.http://wet.atari.orghttp://milan.kovac.cc/atari/software/ ・ Atari Falcon030/CT63/SV ・ Atari STe ・ Atari Mega4/MegaFile30/SM124 ・ Amiga 1200/PPC ・ Amiga 500 ・ C64 ・ ZX Spectrum ・ RPi ・ MagiC! ・ MiNT 1.18 ・ OS X

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Re: The Falcon's confusing history

Postby mfro » Fri Feb 03, 2017 7:40 am

bid wrote:... GEM however, is a truely elegant OS, and it is a shame that Atari did not continue to develop ... Gary died, but the system he created is truely a wonderful, lightweight, fast OS that is modular, suitable for platform change, and tight...


Would strongly disagree. Don't get me wrong, I personally like GEM (mainly for it's simplicity), but it's certainly not a single person's (at least not Gary Kildall's) masterpiece.

  1. GEM is not the operating system, it's a graphics kernel
  2. GEM is a more or less verbatim, stripped down (but otherwise mostly 1:1) copy of the earlier GKS (ISO/IEC 7942) standard, suitable for small machines
  3. DR's merits go merely to getting rid of floating point operations in the kernel and to rip it out of scientist's ivory towers making it cheaply available

Some details in DR's VDI implementation/documentation even led me to believe they didn't fully understand the concepts of GKS ...
Last edited by mfro on Fri Feb 03, 2017 11:20 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: The Falcon's confusing history

Postby AdamK » Fri Feb 03, 2017 10:10 am

calimero wrote:
AdamK wrote:No, there was not. Your view is skewed. Almost all commercial software development for ST stopped. Most of the users left the platform. No mass produced new hardware since.

You can go at http://milan.kovac.cc/atari/software/ and type e.g. "1994" in search and you will see what software were released in 1994. (I did not finish with cataloging but...)

So, currently about 30 titles, most of which are updates, after that most of them are shareware single person (devout developers) programs. That does not market made ;)

Magazines strugling to remain afloat are not good example of a thriving market :P
Atari: Falcon030 + CT60 + SuperVidel + SvEthlana, TT, 520ST + 4MB ST RAM + 8MB TT RAM + CosmosEx + SC1435, 1040STFM + UltraSatan + SM124, 1040STE 4MB ST RAM + 8MB TT RAM + CosmosEx + NetUSBee + SM144 + SC1224, 65XE + U1MB + VBXE + SIDE2, Jaguar, Lynx II, 2 x Portfolio (HPC-006)

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Re: The Falcon's confusing history

Postby calimero » Fri Feb 03, 2017 2:40 pm

AdamK wrote:
calimero wrote:
AdamK wrote:No, there was not. Your view is skewed. Almost all commercial software development for ST stopped. Most of the users left the platform. No mass produced new hardware since.

You can go at http://milan.kovac.cc/atari/software/ and type e.g. "1994" in search and you will see what software were released in 1994. (I did not finish with cataloging but...)

So, currently about 30 titles, most of which are updates, after that most of them are shareware single person (devout developers) programs. That does not market made ;)

yes, yes... it is (or will be): black on white what software come in late years as soon as I finish it but you can see that Maxon, ASH and others publish new software for Atari.

AdamK wrote:Magazines strugling to remain afloat are not good example of a thriving market :P

I am sure that you have not idea what is c't magazina ;)
it is not certainly (or ever was) "magazines strugling to remain afloat".
using Atari since 1986.http://wet.atari.orghttp://milan.kovac.cc/atari/software/ ・ Atari Falcon030/CT63/SV ・ Atari STe ・ Atari Mega4/MegaFile30/SM124 ・ Amiga 1200/PPC ・ Amiga 500 ・ C64 ・ ZX Spectrum ・ RPi ・ MagiC! ・ MiNT 1.18 ・ OS X

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Re: The Falcon's confusing history

Postby calimero » Sun Feb 05, 2017 11:41 am

I just stumble, on Atari HQ CD, what happened with Atari Falcon software (?) modem (file PSL_MEMO.TXT):

Code: Select all

"Panic Systems Ltd.
Dacom House
Presley Way
Crown Hill
MK8 0EF

Attn. Graham Adams, John Waddel

March 28, 1994


I have received the hardware prototype of the Falcon based modem which I
initially became involved with in October of 1992.  Obviously, your contracted
milestones of September and October of 1992 were not met, but we felt a
reasonable amount of time afterward would be acceptable given such an
important project.

Because we believe that it was a low priority with PSL, since receiving it in
mid-February I haven't had an opportunity to attach it to a Falcon to test its
function. As we have not received much in terms of progress, the testing of
this project has now been given  a low priority at Atari because its viability
as a marketable product has been eliminated due to the lateness of its
development.  When I became involved on a weekly basis in May of 1993, I
brought a willingness on Atari's part to give technical support where we
could.  We hoped this would accelerate the development in order to assist in
the  acceptance of the Falcon as a fully featured proprietary platform. 
Indeed, the marketing campaign of the Falcon had been partially built on the
concept of a software based modem and the lack of that product has been not
only frustrating, but one of the tangible factors contributing to of the 
failure of the Falcon in the computer market.

So now it is more than a year since I have been involved with this project and
I can buy a 14.4k modem for a little more than $100.  Therefore, at this time
we see no reason to continue with the development of this project.  If there
is any interest from any parties to pick up the project, I will let you know.

Regards,

J.Patton
Atari Corporation

Previous:

Code: Select all

FAX TRANSMISSION

To:   Piers Uso Walter - i˙link   Atari Corporation
   Fax: 49 30 781 70 56   1196 Borregas Avenue
      Sunnyvale, California
94089
Date:   5-5-93   (408) 745 - 2000

Subject:   NeXTWorld   Number
      of Pages
From:   J. Patton - Atari SUVL   including this one
   Fax: 408 745 2088
   Tel. 408 745 2135
      

Hi,

I wanted to see if you would be able to stop by Atari just before or
after NeXTWorld so we could talk about some possible projects involving
the Falcon. 

One of the projects we would like to talk about is a software modem.
Royalties and hardware cost would have to be relatively small since we
would like to sell this for about $100 US.

Please let me know at your earliest convenience when we could schedule
something while you are in the Bay area.

Thanks,

J.Patton - Atari Corporation
using Atari since 1986.http://wet.atari.orghttp://milan.kovac.cc/atari/software/ ・ Atari Falcon030/CT63/SV ・ Atari STe ・ Atari Mega4/MegaFile30/SM124 ・ Amiga 1200/PPC ・ Amiga 500 ・ C64 ・ ZX Spectrum ・ RPi ・ MagiC! ・ MiNT 1.18 ・ OS X


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