[net.micro.atar] who and what is best in low-priced micros?

dyer (05/08/83)

You undoubtedly will receive many different responses from people
with favorite micro-computers, and to an extent, they all will be
right: it's hard to get a real dog among the mass-market small
computers.  But I think that one, the TRS-80 Color Computer satisfies
all your requirements:

    o   low cost - 16K standard BASIC	$200
		   16K extended BASIC	$300
		   32K extended BASIC	$400 (actually, this is a 64K machine)
    o   attaches to your TV and uses an ordinary cassette recorder
    o   there are several editor-assembler packages available: two,
	Radio Shack's EDTASM and Micro Works' SDS80-C reside in ROMPACs,
	and therefore use little of the precious RAM.
    o   there are several bit-mapped graphics modes available, and there
	are several books describing how to use them in BASIC and assembly
    o   you get an 8-bit micro with perhaps the nicest 64K-limited architecture
	available: the 6809.  Rather like a single-address PDP-11, it
	makes the Z80 and 6502 look primitive by comparison.
    o   a disk subsystem is available, and with that, and a 64K upgrade,
	you will be able to run "real" operating systems such as FLEX
	and OS-9 (the latter a UNIX look-alike constrained to 64K.)
    o   commercial software is relatively low-cost, compared to CP/M

Hope this helps, and have fun looking.

/Steve Dyer