2016-03-06

MiNTerview

Atari 520ST

One of my favourite 16-bit computers was the Atari ST. It shipped in 1985 with a simple single-tasking operating system called TOS, which included lumps of CP/M-68k, DOS Plus, GSX and GEM, all from Digital Research. I liked the consistency and simplicity of TOS but in the late 1990s I tried a multitasking operating system called MiNT. I used it with a GEM program called TOSWIN that let me run multiple text-based programs, each within its own window. If I'd had a hard disk I could probably have added the Minix filesystem and MiNTnet to produce something that resembles BSD. This evening, while I was looking for something else I stumbled across this interview with Eric R. Smith who created MiNT. It taught me some interesting things about the thinking and history behind MiNT.

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