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Encyclopedia > Byte Magazine
The front cover of the April 1981 issue of BYTE (Vol 6. No. 4), "Future Computers?", US$2.50
The front cover of the April 1981 issue of BYTE (Vol 6. No. 4), "Future Computers?", US$2.50

BYTE magazine was probably the most influentual microcomputer magazine in the late 1970s and throughout the 1980s, because of its wide-ranging editorial coverage. Whereas many magazines from the mid-80s to date have been dedicated to the Wintel platform or the Mac, mostly from a business user's perspective, BYTE covered developments in the entire field of "small computers and software", and sometimes included in-depth features on other computing fields as well, such as supercomputers and high-reliability computing. Byte magazine front cover - April 1981 This work is copyrighted. ... Byte magazine front cover - April 1981 This work is copyrighted. ... Apple IIc Hi class Although there is no rigid definition, a microcomputer (sometimes shortened to micro) is most often taken to mean a computer with a microprocessor (µP) as its CPU. Another general characteristic of these computers is that they occupy physically small amounts of space. ... Computer magazines are about computers and related subjects, such as networking and the Internet. ... This article provides extensive lists of events and significant personalities of the 1970s. ... // Events and trends The 1980s marked an abrupt shift towards more conservative lifestyles after the momentous cultural revolutions which took place in the 1960s and 1970s and the definition of the AIDS virus in 1981. ... Wintel is a colloquial, often pejorative, term used to describe desktop computers of the type commonly used in homes and businesses since the late 1980s (these are PC compatible computers running a version of Microsoft Windows). ... The iMac G5, Apples flagship consumer desktop. ...


BYTE started in 1975, shortly after the first personal computers appeared as kits in the back of electronics magazines. BYTE was published monthly, with a yearly subscription price of $10. Carl Helmers was undisputedly the founding editor. Who was the founding publisher is a more complicated story. 1975 was a common year starting on Wednesday (the link is to a full 1975 calendar). ...

Contents


A Tale of two Publishers

In the 1975 Wayne Green was the Editor/Publisher of 73 (an amateur radio magazine) and his ex-wife, Virginia Loudner Green, was the Business Manager of 73 Inc. Wayne was undergoing an IRS audit and 73 Inc. was being sued by Pacific Telephone & Telegraph for a June 1975 article showing how to build various devices that may have allowed free long distance calls. Both Wayne and Virginia were named defendants in the phone company case. (California case C 126265 settled Jan. 12, 1976.) Mrs. ... . The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the United States government agency that collects taxes and enforces the tax laws. ... // Basic definition A financial audit is the examination of financial records and reports of a company, in order to verify that the figures in the financial reports are relevant, accurate, and complete. ...


For some reason the new magazine, BYTE, was published by a new company, Green Publishing. In the first three issues Wayne Green wrote a "from the Publisher" column. The December 1975 issue #4 was the last time Wayne Green's name appeared as publisher (or in the magazine). The January 1976 issue has Virginia Green listed as Publisher. There was a big fight over the magazine but Virginia Green had a solid claim on Green Publishing.


Wayne Green said a lot of negative things about BYTE and reportedly had to pay damages after a series of law suits. Both BYTE and 73 magazine remained in tiny Peterborough, New Hampshire. Peterborough is a town located in Hillsborough County, New Hampshire, USA. As of the 2000 census, the town had a total population of 5,883. ...


The early years

BYTE was able to attract advertising and articles from many well-knowns, soon-to-be-well-knowns, and ultimately-to-be-forgottens in the growing microcomputer hobby. Articles in the first issue (September, 1975) included "Which Microprocessor For You?" by Hal Chamberlin, "Write Your Own Assembler" by Dan Flystra and "Serial Interface" by Don Lancaster. MITS, Godbout, SCELBI, Processor Technology and Sphere were among the advertisers in that issue. Don Lancaster is an author, inventor, and microcomputer pioneer, best known for his magazine columns. ...


Early articles in BYTE were do-it-yourself electronic or software projects to improve one's computer. A continuing feature was "Ciarcia's Circuit Cellar," a column in which an electronic engineer, Steve Ciarcia, described small projects to attach to one's computer (later spun off to become the magazine Circuit Cellar, focusing on embedded computer applications). Significant articles in this period included insertion of disk drives into S-100 computers, publication of source code for various computer languages (Tiny C, BASIC, assemblers), and breathless coverage of the first microcomputer operating system, CP/M. BYTE ran Microsoft's first advertisement, as "Micro-Soft," to sell a BASIC interpreter for 8080-based computers. An embedded system is a special-purpose computer system, which is completely encapsulated by the device it controls. ... The S-100 bus was an early computer bus designed as a part of the Altair 8800, generally considered today to be the first personal computer. The S-100 bus was the first industry standard bus for the microcomputer industry, and S-100 computers, processor and peripheral cards, were produced... The C Programming Language, Brian Kernighan and Dennis Ritchie, the original edition that served for many years as an informal specification of the language The C programming language is a standardized imperative computer programming language developed in the early 1970s by Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie for use on the... BASIC is a family of high-level programming languages. ... An assembler is a computer program for translating assembly language — essentially, a mnemonic representation of machine language — into object code. ... In computing, an operating system (OS) is the system software responsible for the direct control and management of hardware and basic system operations. ... CP/M (Command Processor for Microcomputers) was an operating system for Intel 8080/85 and Zilog Z80 based microcomputers. ... Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) is the worlds biggest software company, with over sixty thousand employees and a physical presence in over sixty countries as of 2005. ... Altair BASIC, in its first incarnation, MITS 4K BASIC, was a true milestone in software history — the first programming language for the worlds first truly personal computer, the MITS Altair 8800. ... Intel C8080A processor. ...


Growth and change

In spring of 1979, owner/publisher Virginia Williamson sold the magazine to McGraw-Hill. She remained publisher through 1983 (a total of about 8 years from inception) and subsequently became a vice president of McGraw-Hill Publications Company. Shortly after the IBM PC was introduced, in 1981, the magazine changed editorial policies. It gradually deemphasized the do-it-yourself electronics and software articles, and began running product reviews, the first computer magazine to do so. It continued its wide-ranging coverage of hardware and software, but now it reported "what it does" and "how it works," not "how-to-do-it." The editorial focus remained on any computer system or software that might be within a typical individual's finances and interest (centered on home and personal computers). The home computer is a consumer-friendly word for the second generation of microcomputers (the technical term that was previously used), entering the market in 1977 and becoming common during the 1980s. ...


From 1975 through 1986, BYTE covers frequently featured the artwork of Robert Tinney. Elegant and stylish, surrealistic and good-humored, these covers made BYTE visually unique. The color scheme was often a dull green that evoked the color of a printed circuit board. In 1987, the replacement of Tinney paintings with product photographs (together with the discontinuation of Steve Ciarcia's "Circuit Cellar" column) marked the end of an era.


BYTE continued to grow. By 1990, it was a monthly about an inch in thickness, a readership of technical professionals, and a subscription price of $56/year (quite pricely). It was the "must-read" magazine of the popular computer magazines. Around 1993, BYTE began to develop a web presence. It acquired a domain name "byte.com" and began to have discussions and post selected editorial content.


The controversial end of BYTE

In 1998, still growing, BYTE was purchased by CMP Media, a successful publisher of specialized computer magazines. CMP ceased publication (ending with the July 1998 issue), laid off all the staff and shut down BYTE's rather large product-testing lab. Subscribers were offered a choice of two of CMP's other magazines, notably CMP's flagship publication about Windows PCs. Subscribers were shocked, horrified, and angrily speculated on the Internet that CMP had purchased BYTE to destroy it as a competitor. Publication of BYTE in Germany and Japan continued uninterrupted. 1998 is a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year of the Ocean. ... CMP Media LLC is a business-to-business multimedia company that provides information and integrated marketing services to technology and healthcare professionals worldwide. ...


Many of BYTE's columnists migrated their writing to personal web sites. The most popular of these was probably science fiction author Jerry Pournelle's weblog "The View From Chaos Manor" derived from a long-standing column in BYTE, describing computers from a power-user's point of view. Pournelle's writing is clear, intelligent, colorful, opinionated, and idiosyncratic; he amuses or offends many people. In 1999, CMP revived BYTE as a web-publication. In 2002, the site became subscription-supported. The wide-ranging editorial policy continues. The site now has numerous articles on open-source projects, including a continuing column on Linux by Moshe Bar. Jerry Pournelle was retained to continue writing "The View From Chaos Manor", which from December 2003 again appears in print in English, in the programming magazine Dr. Dobb's Journal. Science fiction is a form of speculative fiction principally dealing with the impact of imagined science and technology, or both, upon society and persons as individuals. ... This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... A weblog (now more commonly known as a blog) is a web-based publication consisting primarily of periodic articles (normally, but not always, in reverse chronological order). ... 1999 is a common year starting on Friday Anno Domini (or the Current Era), and was designated the International Year of Older Persons by the United Nations. ... 2002(MMII) is a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The subscription business model is a business model that has long been used by magazines and record clubs, but the application of this model is spreading. ... The previous open source article now exists at open-source software. ... Unix systems filiation. ... 2003(MMIII) is a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Dr. Dobbs Journal of Computer Calisthenics & Orthodontia with the subtitle Running Light without Overbyte was the full title of the pioneer microcomputer hobbyist newsletter published from early 1976 by Bob Albrecht and Dennis Allisons Peoples Computer Company. ...


External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
Byte (magazine) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (944 words)
Byte magazine was probably the most influentual microcomputer magazine in the late 1970s and throughout the 1980s, because of its wide-ranging editorial coverage.
Whereas many magazines from the mid-80s to date have been dedicated to the Wintel platform or the Mac, mostly from a business user's perspective, Byte covered developments in the entire field of "small computers and software", and sometimes included in-depth features on other computing fields as well, such as supercomputers and high-reliability computing.
Byte was able to attract advertising and articles from many well-knowns, soon-to-be-well-knowns, and ultimately-to-be-forgottens in the growing microcomputer hobby.
Byte - definition of Byte in Encyclopedia (848 words)
Byte was also the name of a popular computer industry magazine, see Byte magazine.
A byte is commonly used as a unit of storage measurement in computers, regardless of the type of data being stored.
The move to an eight-bit byte happened in late 1956, and this size was later adopted and promulgated as a standard by the System/360.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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