Altair 680 Microcomputer (1974) by MITS


Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems (or "MITS") was founded by Edward Roberts in 1968.








See also Altair 8800




Altair 680 Inside

(Altair photos above are courtesy of Skeeter, Electronic Surplus.)

Altair 680b (above)

(History -: Some sources say that the computer was named "Altair" after the planet Altair from a Star Trek television series episode "A Voyage to Altair." However, research provided by Ricardo Zelenovsky, states that there is no such episode, and the name may in fact be from a planed referred to in an early science fiction movie. "Forbidden Planet," where there is a planet called "Altair IV.")

The Altair needed a method for users to write programs for it. Bill Gates and Paul Allen became aware of the Altair and developed a BASIC interpreter for it and sold it to MITS. Allen went to work for MITS, while Bill Gates went on to develop other software. They later founded Microsoft Corporation.

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