Task: Read the Atari 8-bit FAQ
Needed: Web Browser
Time: 15-60 minutes
If you were “online” in the 1980s you probably accessed Usenet newsgroups for posting on discussion threads about various topics including Atari. There was (is) a comp.sys.atari.8bit newsgroup that was quite active in the 1990s. Many newsgroups came with an FAQ to orient users before they started making posts to save on redundancy. The Atari 8-bit newsgroup has an awesome FAQ that was developed and maintained by Michael Current. This is a great source of information about the Atari 400/800/XL/XE computers and worth at least browsing. There is information about the computers, video display, data storage, printers, modems, software, file formats, and even interfacing with modern computers.
Navigate to the FAQ on your browser!
Here is an Antic podcast (Episode 10) featuring Michael Current. Episode 9 of the Player/Missile podcast features an interview with Current. There are helpful for some of the background info about the FAQ.
At the end of the FAQ is a really interesting timeline of the history of the Atari 8-bit computers.