How Small Businesses Learn to Be Green In Business

Jack Tramiel - The End of an Era

by Chuck Peavey 11. April 2012 01:14

Jack TramielIf Technology is The Key to Being Green…

I’m deviating from my usual Green in Business theme today… well, maybe not! Because let’s face it, the easiest way to stop using all that paper and sitting in traffic for hours and hours a day is to work from the comfort of your own home on a computer, a “home” computer! And, that brings me to my point.

My Connection With a Legend

In 1982, a friend of mine showed me how to get a Commodore 64 computer to print my name over and over on the screen. Here is exactly the very first code I ever wrote:

10 Print”Chuck”
20 goto 10
Run 10

That was it, I was hooked. Since that moment, I created the first ever computerized Nutrition Guide (“The Nutritionest), I published 12 different video games including the Atari XE versions of One on One Basketball, Lode Runner and Dark Chambers. There’s even a cult following of the Atari 7800 version of Missing in Action even though it was never released.

Moving forward, I’ve spoke at the SEGA International Developers conference in 1995 on “Product Management” (talk about a tough crowd) and I have helped over 300 businesses grow by building web sites to integrate into their business.

All of that started because of one Man who took a calculator company and made it something bigger… Jack Tramiel.

The Legend Continues

Commodore 64 Home ComputerJack Tramiel was amazing. A Holocaust survivor, a cab driver, a self made man, to me he was like the Godfather but in real life and from where I sat he was not afraid of anything. His vision was to take home computers to the next level by leaps and bounds but the board of directors at Commodore disagreed, they wanted to keep milking the 8 bit computer market as long as they could. He protested, Jack bought Atari and created the Atari ST. In a panic, Commodore bought the Amiga and the war of the low prices powerful computers was on.

What happened to Atari, what happened to Commodore, it doesn’t really matter, what does matter is that a big part of the reason you can afford to be sitting at your computer right now reading this is because of Jack Tramiel.

You can learn more about Jack in his own words here (Hint: he starts at the 17:00 minute mark)



The End of a Legend

On Sunday April 10th, Jack Tramiel passed away at the age of 84! Right now, I couldn’t be sadder if it were my own father. Growing up, all I knew was that I wanted to work on computers and in my world, that was impossible. Jack made it possible and because of him and a lot of late nights learning how to program while going to college and working full time, a poor kid from Utah found a white collar career and I’ve loved every moment of it.

There are times I’m actually fearless in business and to be honest, I’m modeling what I learned from Jack Tramiel. I never met the man, I met two of his sons Sam and Leonard when they were at Atari but I’m sure neither will remember me.

The Green Business Connection

As time moves on and we learn how to conserve resources, as computers become smaller and smaller and more involved in our lives, there are a lot of people we can thank but Jack Tramiel gets full blame for making the home computer affordable to the rest of us and every time you visit Facebook, every time you pay a bill or make a purchase online, his spirit is there!

For more on how you and your business can make a difference, come visit me at

Chuck Peavey
Be Seen as Being Green



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