A Computer Ahead of Its Time
Amiga was a computer that was fascinating because of its ability to do things that other computers couldn’t do good weight loss supplements.
In its heyday, the Amiga was superior in terms of graphics and sound. It displayed up to 64 out of a palette of 4096 colours. Its also featured 4 voices (and sometimes 8 through a little hacking) to played simultaneously,
Compared to IBM PC, Atari ST and Apple Macintosh, it was the cream of the crop in 1985. It would stay that way up to the early 1990s. I think Atari was its closest competitor and I could’ve went that route if my brother decided to buy that machine.
Instead, my brother traded in the trusty Apple //e with its green radioactive screen for the colourful Amiga 1000. We later upgraded to 2000. Much later, I got a 1200 and finally a 4000.
While I knew Amiga could do graphics quite well, I was shy and scared of using a mouse to create images on the screen. At best, I made some shapes using the rectangle and circle tool and pressed the paint bucket to fill the screen.
Much later, after the Amiga craze was long gone, I saw on YouTube Andy Warhol working on the Amiga 1000. He just went on to demonstrate the superiority of Amiga’s graphics. He took a photo of girl’s face with a digital(!) camera, and proceeded to paint using the paint bucket.
Amiga was also considered a pioneer in 3D animation. With NewTek’s Video Toaster, it not only allowed professional video editing, it had a 3D program called LightWave. While that program was used to make 3D Text animation, some people used LightWave’s modeler to make other things. Babylon 5, Seaquest DSV had animation made from LightWave.
There was the mod scene in Amiga. I’ve had friends that made music this way, but I couldn’t get my head around to play and tinker that way.
Instead, my friend Neel and I made music through MIDI using our keyboards. He had his Roland D-70 and I had my Korg Wavestation. I admit he was way more into it than I was and was constantly on his Amiga 2000 with Music-X making different songs. I dabbled a bit and made a few tracks at best.
This is was got me into Amiga. Games. Hundreds of them.
Whatever I could grab, I did. They were addicting and took hours of my time. I played the upgraded version of Ultima IV, Xenon, Lemmings, Defender of the Crown, Frontier Elite II, Stunt Car Racer, International Karate +, UFO: Enemy Unknown, Syndicate and countless others.
The memories of playing those games remain dear and was a great time.
But I stayed way longer than I should have. I stayed when the PC became dominant and did the same things the Amiga did and better. The Mac also went on to surpass the Amiga. Atari faded into history.
When I reflect on those times, they happen because you’re a fanatic. You don’t know when to stop. Even when Amiga’s company Commodore went belly up in 1993, I always hoped that this machine would somehow continue with another company. It sort of did with Escom and Gateway, but they also went down with a quiet thud.
Eventually the Amigas started gathering dust and I got my own PC. I didn’t feel good about that, but life and tech goes on. I’m glad I can still read about the Amiga in the Internet and muse about the years pass.