The Commodore PET 2001: A Revolutionary Computer Ahead of Its Time
In the early days of personal computing, one machine emerged as a trailblazer – the Commodore PET 2001. Released in 1977, the PET (Personal Electronic Transactor) was one of the first all-in-one personal computers to hit the market. Its sleek design, integrated keyboard, and built-in monitor made it a groundbreaking device that set the stage for the future of computing.
The Commodore PET 2001 was designed by Chuck Peddle and his team at Commodore International. It featured an impressive 9-inch monochrome display with a resolution of 40×25 characters – a significant step up from the teletype terminals commonly used at that time. The built-in chiclet keyboard made it easy for users to interact with the machine without needing additional peripherals.
Underneath its stylish exterior, the PET 2001 boasted some impressive specifications for its time. It was powered by a MOS Technology 6502 microprocessor running at a speed of 1 MHz, which provided ample processing power for basic tasks and programming. The computer came with either 4KB or 8KB of RAM, which could be expanded up to a maximum of 96KB – quite generous for its era.
One notable feature of the PET 2001 was its integrated cassette tape drive, which allowed users to load and save programs on standard audio cassettes. While slow compared to today’s storage methods, this feature was revolutionary back then and eliminated the need for expensive external storage devices.
The PET’s operating system, Commodore BASIC (Beginner’s All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code), provided an accessible programming environment for users to create their own software or run pre-existing applications. This made the PET not only a useful tool for personal productivity but also an excellent educational platform.
The release of the Commodore PET marked a turning point in the personal computer industry. It brought computing power directly into the hands of individuals, paving the way for a new era of home computing. The PET 2001 found success in both educational institutions and businesses, where its affordability and versatility made it an attractive choice.
While later models like the Commodore 64 would surpass the PET’s popularity, it was the PET 2001 that laid the foundation for Commodore’s future success as a leading computer manufacturer. Its innovative design and features were ahead of their time, setting a high standard for what personal computers could achieve.
Today, the Commodore PET 2001 holds a special place in computer history. It represents an important milestone in the evolution of personal computing, reminding us of how far we’ve come since those early days. As we look back at this groundbreaking machine, we can appreciate its role in shaping the technology-driven world we live in today.
Whether you’re an avid collector or simply curious about computing history, exploring the story of the Commodore PET 2001 is sure to be an enlightening journey into our digital past.
Commonly Asked Questions about the Commodore PET 2001
- What resolution is the Commodore PET?
- What is the size of Commodore PET?
- What is a fun fact about the Commodore PET?
- When was the Commodore PET 2001 made?
What resolution is the Commodore PET?
The Commodore PET had a display resolution of 40×25 characters.
What is the size of Commodore PET?
The size of the original Commodore PET 2001 computer was approximately 16.5 inches (42 cm) in width, 14 inches (36 cm) in depth, and 12.5 inches (32 cm) in height. These measurements are for the complete unit, including the built-in monitor, keyboard, and cassette tape drive. The PET’s compact design allowed it to be a self-contained system, making it convenient for users who wanted an all-in-one personal computer experience.
What is a fun fact about the Commodore PET?
A fun fact about the Commodore PET is that its original name was not “PET” but rather “Personal Electronic Transactor.” However, it was later changed to PET because the acronym also coincidentally matched the word “pet,” which added a playful and memorable touch to the computer’s name.
When was the Commodore PET 2001 made?
The Commodore PET 2001 was first made and released in 1977.