4171Re: Star Trek 40th anniversary event -- update
- Sep 13, 2006
> Evan wrote:Star Trek
> >There's also the story about how MITS got the name "Altair" from a
> >planetary reference -- but I've read that the story may or may notbe true.
>Vill Degnan wrote:
>This is an old question. I've researched on the Web, which has reports
> that's what I was referring to.
from first and second-hand sources. See my notes and links at this link:
But the upshot is that the MITS Altair 8800 was most likely named
based on a reference to "Altair" from a Star Trek episode. WHO named
it varies from report to report. The predominant explanation is it was
a young daughter of Les Solomon, the editor of Popular Electronics
where the computer was offered as a kit). Others say it was named by
the daughter of Ed Roberts (designer of the Altair and MITS founder),
or named by one of the other Pop 'Tronics staff.
Here's a link to an Ed Roberts interview:
Oddly enough, while the interviewer's posted article describes Les
Solomon's daughter and Star Trek as the source, his dialog with
Roberts in the article does not show that Roberts confirms this.
The name "Altair" was already in technical and popular culture in the
era. Orginally it is the name of a star. But "Altair" was also the
daughter of the scientist in the Disney movie "Forbidden Planet" in
the late 60's; then it became the name of a planet visited in a Star
Trek episode. That Star Trek episode: "Amok Time", episode 34 -
original airdate: 9/16/1967.
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