Commodore Vic-20 gets internet connectivity

Commodore Vic-20

The Commodore Vic-20 the first computer to achieve one million sales is to be resurrected online on Saturday.

The 1981 home computer - one of the least technically capable PCs but by far one of the most popular at the time will be used to send a message via Twitter this coming weekend for the first time.

It was created some 15 years before the internet became popular and therefore internet connectivity was far from being on the minds of its creators.

The feat will be achieved by staff at the Personal Computer Museum in the Canadian town of Brantford, Ontario. They will use specially written software to connect it to the internet, which will have to be run from cassette tape the primary means for running programs on the computer.

"The Personal Computer Museum is proud to make history... as we put one of the lowest power personal computers on the internet, and more specifically, with Twitter," wrote the museum's proprietors on its website.

Supposing the museum's proprietors succeed, the Vic-20 will become one of the oldest machines ever to be connected to the internet. It has just 5K of RAM and a 1.02MHz processor, and uses a 22-column display and 16 colours.

However, the Vic-20 became phenomenally successful, and had a huge role to play in the uptake of PCs in the home. At the time of its release, it was the first PC to be sold for under $300.

Current PCs have on average 419,430 times the memory of the Vic-20, according to the museum.