A series of personal computer models originally
sold by Commodore, based on 680x0 processors, custom support chips
and an operating system that combined some of the best features of
Macintosh and Unix with compatibility with neither.
The Amiga was released just as the personal computing world
standardized on IBM-PC clones. This prevented it from gaining
serious market share, despite the fact that the first Amigas had a
substantial technological lead on the IBM XTs of the time. Instead,
it acquired a small but zealous population of enthusiastic hackers
who dreamt of one day unseating the clones (see Amiga Persecution Complex). The traits of this culture are both spoofed
and illuminated in The BLAZE Humor Viewer. The strength of the Amiga platform seeded a
small industry of companies building software and hardware for the
platform, especially in graphics and video applications (see
Due to spectacular mismanagement, Commodore did hardly any R&D,
allowing the competition to close Amiga's technological lead.
After Commodore went bankrupt in 1994 the technology passed through
several hands, none of whom did much with it. However, the Amiga
is still being produced in Europe under license and has a
substantial number of fans, which will probably extend the
platform's life considerably.
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