[ Retro Scan of the Week ] Man’s New Best Friend?

March 31st, 2008 by Benj Edwards

TRS-80 Model 4 Family Ad“Gather ’round, kids, and warm up by the TRS-80 Model 4” (1983)

[Edit (04/02/2008) – This was an April Fool’s Day scan. It was edited by me to look weird. Hope you enjoyed it! ]

Discussion topic of the week: Have you ever used a computer with all four members of your nuclear family at the same time?

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10 Responses to “[ Retro Scan of the Week ] Man’s New Best Friend?”

  1. neotigZ Says:

    Wow… Those girls are scary looking… The 2 on the right look the same and the 2 on the left look the same. Did they have cloning back in 83? I never got to play with any of the older computers but i wish i had. I been checking this site out for a while and i love looking at all the stuff i never got to play with but this pic is creepy. lol So i had to reply to it. Oh i just remembered i did use an apple 2 in school but very briefly.

  2. Layne Says:

    So, to answer your question at a technical level, yes, I’ve used a computer with four concurrent users (game consoles). I’ve even had linux running on a PC and then used another PC as a dumb terminal into it to play a game — this was around 1996.

    What I find interesting in this scan is that it is MAN’s best friend, but they show ‘chopped images of a woman (it’s the same woman, flipped left to right, scaled, hair added, etc.). Probably done with photography / publishing tricks and not with a computer back in those days……I’m sure it took them a week or two to get it looking good. These days, someone who is good a Photoshop could have it done in a couple of hours.


  3. Matt Says:

    Radio Snack?

  4. Josel Abar Says:

    I have seen the ‘radio snack’ before on these ads as a typographic error from the company’s marketing departments. The people though, I have not seen. Very strange.

  5. arlandi Says:

    The graphic dept. was so tired from editing the photo, their right index finger missed a single key and didnt even notice… lol

  6. Brian Deuel Says:

    Our high school had a whole computer lab filled with the precursor of this machine, the Model III. We did get a few of these in ’84 to replace some hosed IIIs, but they weren’t much better. There’s a reason why they called this machine the “TRaSh-80”.

    On the other hand, I *did* learn Z80 assembly on the Model III…

  7. Kitsunexus Says:


  8. chris Says:

    I just don’t get it – obviously this is supposed to be a family with two kids and a dog.
    If they all have the same faces on purpose, is the ad supposed to suggest that TRS80 users are plunged into some Aphex-Twin parallel reality where everybody has the same face?
    Or is it just a mistake and that is whats so funny about the ad? Or was the image postprocessed? I are confused!

  9. Jim Ulrich Says:

    Happy April Fool’s Day everbody!

  10. jas Says:

    i thought jokes were supposed to be funny?

    epic fail doug.

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