Retro Scan of the Week: Isaac Asimov’s “Favorite Color Computer”

April 2nd, 2007 by Benj Edwards
Isaac Asimov TRS-80 Color Computer Ad

Take it from Isaac. Now you can save $100 on any TRS-80 Color Computer.

Let’s see. Texas-Instruments had Bill Cosby, Commodore had William Shatner, and Atari had Alan Alda. But did you know that Tandy-Radio Shack’s computer spokesperson in the early 1980s was science fiction author Isaac Asimov? I’ve seen a number of TRS-80 ads featuring him, and he always looks way too happy. But that was his job. And I’ve always loved Asimov’s sideburns. It’s like I’ve always said: nothing sells a home computer like a hairy man with a joystick. Take that, Commodore.

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12 Responses to “Retro Scan of the Week: Isaac Asimov’s “Favorite Color Computer””

  1. Geroup Says:

    According to his posthumous autobiography, Asimov actually used a TRS-80 (to the end of his life) as a word processor. He would only endorse a product he actually used. And he never moved on to a newer machine.

    Did any of the other spokesmodels actually use their computers? _Maybe_ Alan Alda with Atari. I doubt Cosby (or anyone else) used a TI. No way Shatner gave a fuck.

  2. KVet Says:

    Ooh, ‘Super Bust-Out’? If only it came with Space Intruders, Ping, and Mariano Bros.

  3. KitsuneDarkStalker Says:

    Was this the same thing as the Coco?

  4. Benj Edwards Says:

    Kitsune: Yes. “CoCo” is short for “Color Computer.”

  5. KitsuneDarkStalker Says:

    Cool, I’ve heard good things about that computer. ^_^

  6. SirPaul Says:

    Those sideburns have always scared me…

    Indeed, the TRS-80 Color Computer is a nice system. It was the first computer I ever owned, and I currently have one hooked up to my television. I do not know if this system is upgraded or not, and I am trying to figure that out.

  7. KitsuneDarkStalker Says:

    Oh and about this ad; Asimov might have said the first two quotes, I could even go out on a limb and say he might’ve had said the THIRD quote, but there is NO WAY he voluntarily uttered the fourth. No way.

  8. Jake of Says:

    Isaac Asimov had the coolest sideburns of all times.

  9. David Says:

    Gasp! Look at the URL!

    This is page 300! This should be dedicated to SPARTA!!!!!!!! and not a color computer >:(

  10. Benj Edwards Says:

    Hehe. I’ll let you lead the tribute, David. 🙂

  11. Jason Says:

    Those sideburns are awesome!! Maybe when I reach that age in life I will have a pair just like them and I will also be playing retro games!!! 🙂

  12. ray allen Says:

    One of the reasons that I liked my old Color Computer was that it could run an operating system from Microware called OS-9 (which is still available!).

    I sold that machine to a friend who at last count was writing CAM programs on it, porting them to his PC via a serial cable, and running them.

    Not bad for an 8-bit processor running at 1 MHz with 64K of ram.

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