This excellent example of a Commuter 1083 Computer was donated to RICM by Holiday and Dave Collins of Dover Massachusetts. The Visual Technology Company was known to have paid their employees with computers when the payroll was short. The Visual 1083, was also known as the "Commuter" and is an early MS-DOS system. The Commuter was able to be use
with a detachable (and optional) LCD display (80x16 characters, monochrome) or a
more classic RGB monitor (80x25 characters).
The system contains two 5.25" disk drives offering 360 KB each. The
83 key keyboard is identical to IBM's PC, except for the addition of
lights on the "Caps Lock" and "Num Lock" keys.
The computer could be expanded by adding custom cards and there is an
expansion port that can be directly connected to an IBM expansion
Click on the above for a copy of the brochure.
It was great to meet you and have a museum tour.
Here's how we got the Commuter:
Visual Technology in Tewksbury, Mass hired my firm for some corporate
strategic consulting. When it came time to pay the bill, they were short
on cash, but long on Commuters. I don't remember the date, but as I
best remember the transaction, they gave us 10 commuters valued at
$1,000 each to settle a $10,000 bill. We then sold them to our employees
(including me) for $500 each. As a former COBOL programmer, Holly has
been the primary computer person in our family and she and our daughters
used the Commuter when the desk top was in use. I can't ever remember
it being used other than at home.