Jack Tramiel, Father Of Commodore 64 And An Auschwitz Survivor, Dies At 83 | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

Jack Tramiel, Father Of Commodore 64 And An Auschwitz Survivor, Dies At 83

Jack Tramiel, the founder of Commodore International, whose iconic Commodore 64 was one of the best-selling computers of all time, has died. He was 83.

Forbes reports that Tramiel was born in Poland in 1928 to a Jewish family and sent to Auschwitz during World War II. He and father were then sent to the Ahlem labor camp near Hanover. He was rescued in 1945 and came to the U.S. two years later. It was then that he started Commodore as a typewriter business.

"Staying in the forefront of technology, his typewriters morphed into calculators, and later computers," Forbes said.

In 1982, Commodore International launched the Commodore 64, which by some accounts is the best-selling personal computer of all time. After he was forced to leave the company, he rebuilt Atari Corp. in 1984, transforming it from a maker of game consoles into a PC manufacturer, the Wall Street Journal reported.

"Jack Tramiel was an immense influence in the consumer electronics and computing industries," Martin Goldberg, a writer working on a book about the Atari brand and the early days of video games and computing with Atari Museum founder Curt Vendel, told Forbes. "A name once uttered in the same vein as Steve Jobs is [mentioned] today; his journey from concentration camp survivor to captain of industry is the stuff of legends."

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Ruth Rendell Dies, Pioneered The Psychological Thriller

The British mystery writer was known for her Inspector Wexford series and in her later years became active in Labour Party politics. NPR's Petra Mayer has this remembrance.
NPR

'Bourbon Empire' Reveals The Smoke And Mirrors Of American Whiskey

A new book suggests that tall tales on craft bourbon labels are the rule rather than the exception. They're just one example of a slew of "carefully cultivated myths" created by the bourbon industry.
NPR

Site Using Candidate Carly Fiorina's Name Attacks Her Record At HP

The site, carlyfiorina.org, says the Republican presidential candidate laid off 30,000 people while she ran Hewlett-Packard. Fiorina does not deny the figure but says, overall, the firm created jobs.
NPR

As Emoji Spread Beyond Texts, Many Remain [Confounded Face] [Interrobang]

There's a growing tendency to bring the tiny hieroglyphs off of phones, but not everyone is fluent. New takes on emoji integration suggest misunderstanding may be remedied with universal translation.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.