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View Full Version : amazing - the TI lives!



MattCarp
December 28th, 2013, 08:51 AM
So with a little down time during the holidays, I pulled out my old TI-99/4 from 1980. 33 years later, it still works.

So, I clicked around and I'm amazed there are still crazy people like me playing with these machines. It seems the critical mass is on a Yahoo group - so, I've applied to join the group to see what's going on.

I also checked out eBay - who are all these people selling cartridges for $10-50? The other question I have is, who is buying these things? .TI Must have way over-produced these cartridges back in the day.

Ksarul
December 28th, 2013, 11:35 AM
There are a lot of us. I have a couple of different TI-99/4s, various TI-99/4As, and a pair of TI-99/8s (two different variants). Some of us even make new hardware for them. There are some truly rare cartridges--mostly third-party, but as you noted, most of the TI-produced cartridges aren't worth more than $3 to $5 tops. There are a lot of them out there. I've paid as much as $400 for truly rare carts, so I am one of those crazies you've seen bidding on eBay. . .LOL

MattCarp
December 28th, 2013, 03:19 PM
Thanks for chiming in. I suppose I left the TI community after I moved to the PCjr a few years later. What I find really interesting is how much of a compromise the TI was in terms of design. This whole GPL/GROM thing. It seems as though the power of the machine was really handicapped with the GPL interpreter and also the lack of any real RAM on the 16-bit bus.

Of course, it was my first machine and I didn't have much of a choice. Actually, at the time I was very amazed by the TI. It looked absolutely incredible at the department store. I was extremely lucky to get one and I owe a lot to it for teaching me what it means to program a computer.

I think TI was really most effective in marketing. Bill Cosby, the user group network, all really helped push the platform. I need to read a good book on the home computer wars. Fire in the Valley is more S-100, Apple, and IBM…the drama between TI, Atari, and Commodore was also pretty interesting.