Talk:List of home computers

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Personal computers appearing in list[edit]

A number of manufacturers of personal computers is appearing in the list. The list supposedly lists a different type of computers, namely home computers. In preserving the consistency names like Packard Bell and others should be moved to a suitable list of personal computers. This also means that the IBM PC ought to be removed, except the IBM PCjr which apparently seems to classify as a home computer. -- Mic 16:10, Sep 19, 2003 (UTC)

The problem is the changing characteristics of the home computer. The C-64 was on the market for 11 years; today it's rare for a specific model of computer to stay on the market much longer than four months. But certain manufacturers—Packard Bell and eMachines being the two that come to mind most quickly—sell/sold PCs that for a variety of reasons were popular in homes but uncommon in business environments. (You see them sometimes, like you sometimes saw C-64s in businesses, but they weren't designed or marketed as such.) A list of every machine Packard Bell or eMachines produced is about as practical to create as a list of every television Zenith produced (and probably about as useful); listing the manufacturer seems to me a good compromise. -- Dave Farquhar 19:24, 21 Oct 2003 (UTC)

In my view a machine should only be classed as a home computer if it normally outputs graphics at UHF to a TV set, rather than to a dedicated monitor, and/or it combines the keyboard with the main electronics in a single box. -- GCarty

There are a lot of systems in this list that don't fit into the home computer category, either because of the vague/absent definition of "home computer", or simply the lack of any other lists in which to put them. -- LQ (talk) 11:40, 17 May 2008 (UTC)

Research Machines not a home computer?[edit]

From the articles it looks like the RM computers were aimed at schools, not at home use (8 inch floppies, CP/M operating system, networking!, etc.) - I suggest these don't belong on this list. --Wtshymanski (talk) 13:35, 31 July 2008 (UTC)

Newbear[edit]

I will leave resolution on the discussion on definitions to others but, in the meantime, have re-instated the Newbear 77-68 in this list as I can confirm from personal experience that it was a fully-fledged home computer by anyone's standards, with a VDU and keyboard and running BASIC. True it was possible to run a system with 256 bytes of RAM and direct memory access toggle switches but many users built VDUs or hooked up teletypes. Hugh Mason (talkcontribs 16:49, 28 December 2008 (UTC)

My knowledge of the Newbear is based solely on the article which starts off as " The Newbear 77/68 was a kit of parts from which a purchaser could construct a first generation home computer based around a Motorola 6800 microprocessor." A kit of parts is not a home computer. Could you buy a plug-and-play version anywhere?
We have a footnote which says " In this list a "home" computer is a factory-assembled consumer product, mass-marketed for general consumer use, usually at significantly lower cost than contemporary business computers, with an alphabetic keyboard, the ability to run both games software as well as application software and user-written programs, some external removable mass storage device (cassette or diskette), and excludes PDAs, laptop computers, and pure video game consoles. Single-board development or evaluation boards, intended to demonstrate a microprocessor, are excluded since these were not marketed to general consumers. This list also excludes the pioneering kit and assembled hobby microcomputers which generally required electronics skills to build or operate."
The key element is, I think, "consumer product". Anything that required wire-wrapping or soldering is not typically aimed at the mass-market (even very good kits like Heathkit would not really qualify as home computers under this definition). --Wtshymanski (talk) 17:39, 28 December 2008 (UTC)

Table format[edit]

Have a look at User:Wtshymanski/List of home computers/Table for a proposed table format for this article. I will move it into the current article title in a few days if no-one has any recommendations for changes. This could also absorb the present List of home computers by category, though the List of home computers by video hardware has way too many details to shoehorn into this table. --Wtshymanski (talk) 22:53, 29 January 2011 (UTC)

looks good to me, it like its inspired on "my" List of home computers by video hardware article, so it packs a lot of information in a small space. I also like the fact that the article has still reserved a space for devices that are not actually "home computers", but are very close, like test boards. and kit computers. In the beginning these were simply an alternative to buying a pre-assembled home computer, especially for students on a very small budget how wanted to "get into computing" but didn't have the money for a commercial system, or for those who had demands not fulfilled by a normal home computer . Mahjongg (talk) 00:17, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
The video hardware article has a number of subsections, which I didn't think to include in this article. Could be broken down into "8 bit/16 bit/32 bit" processors, I suppose, but CPU type is already in the columns.
It's a bit of a kludge to have the hobby and school computers as separate sections, perhaps these should also be tables, but they are a lot more variable than the home computer segment. At least having these sections allows them to be acknowledged without too much debate on what a "home computer" leaves off and a "trainer" starts.
I'll do some more fixing and move it in shortly. --Wtshymanski (talk) 03:02, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Well, here it is. More references are needed. Some Soviet-block computers are missing release years (even in their articles). The hobby/kit computers and school computers should also be in tabular format. Fact checking would be good. And the flags column doesn't behave the way I expected when sorted - flags interleave at random, or according to some rule I don't understand. --Wtshymanski (talk) 21:23, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Suggestion for expansion[edit]

Additions to the list would be most valuable if they had either a link to an existing relevant article for the computer or manufacturer, or a reference that proves the computer existed and has the properties listed in the table. "Old computers.com" is a last ditch reference source, I'm uncertain of its accuracy but at least it idenfies a lot of machines, usually with pictures. Featured lists have references for theic entries, and in principle this article could have a reference for every machine. --Wtshymanski (talk) 04:33, 28 March 2011 (UTC)

Oddball ... BASIS 108 (Apple II / Z-80 compatible)[edit]

I don't much of anything about this. Found this ad for it in InfoWorld May 1983 (Vol 5, No 10) on Google Books:

http://books.google.com/books?id=-y8EAAAAMBAJ&ots=eGlZH-0gFs&pg=PA52

DMahalko (talk) 06:26, 30 May 2011 (UTC)

Its YAAC (yet another apple clone) [1]. This time it came with the second processor (Z80) and accompanying 80-column card built in. It was German, and thus a bit over-engineered. Special about is was only the non attached keyboard, which was easy to do with the apple ][ (unlike for example the TRS-80). I remember having seen one in a shop (in the Netherlands) once, together with a "pearcom", another apple clone. Mahjongg (talk) 09:45, 30 May 2011 (UTC)

Atari not a home computer[edit]

The Atari isn't a computer. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 76.95.8.182 (talk) 04:21, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

Why? And which Atari? Even the 400 had a factory-available BASIC cartridge. --Wtshymanski (talk) 13:32, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
Perhaps he means the Atari 2600, but just ignore the fool, look at his talk page. Mahjongg (talk) 15:01, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
I looked again, the Atari 2600 isn't on this list. --Wtshymanski (talk) 15:10, 10 June 2011 (UTC)