Color Computer Magazine (November 1983)


Cover of the November 1983 issue of Color Computer Magazine

The Radio Shack TRS-80 Color Computer, also known as the Tandy Color Computer or the Coco was a series of mostly compatible home computers produced from 1980 until 1991. It was the only common computer I am aware of that used the Motorola 6809 CPU. This was an 8-bit CPU but had some 16-bit features and was powerful for its time.

The Coco wasn't really as popular as Commodore, Apple or Atari computers but it was supported by Radio Shack for a long time and still had a magazine or two dedicated to it, including Color Computer Magazine.

The November 1983 issue included the following:


  • Super Spiro! – A type-in program for generating spirographs, including parameters for several different ones.

  • Color Computing for Kids – A programming article for kids. Included is a tutorial on FOR/NEXT loops in BASIC with math examples and an example printing a Thanksgiving message.

  • Star – A simple type-in program for drawing a star-like object on the screen.

  • Sorcerer’s Puzzles – A type-in game that features several puzzle challenges.

  • Slither – A type-in machine language game. This game existed on may computers in many forms. You control a snake as it goes around the screen eating things. As it eats it grows longer. If you run into yourself, you die.
  • Unforgettable Characters – Creating custom characters on the Color Computer.

  • My MC-10 Speaks ML! – The MC-10 was a sort of cut down version of the Color Computer designed to compete with even cheaper computers like the VIC-20. Other than BASIC programs, it was mostly incompatible with the Color Computer and far more limited. It was not a success. This article covers machine language programming on that machine.

Table of Contents from the November 1983 issue of Color Computer Magazine


  • PEEK (11,83) - An overview of the magazine's contents this month.

  • INKEY$ - Letters from readers covering topics such as piracy, machine language for beginners, productivity software and more.

  • GOTO School - A column on education and computers. This month, the advantages of monochrome monitors and how computer information services are beginning to supplement encyclopedias as a go to resource.

  • Reviews
    • Micron Eye - A digital imaging system for the 16K Color Computer.
    • Astro Blast - A Space Invaders clone for the Color Computer.
    • Colorkit 1.2 - A toolkit that provides a wide variety of programming tools for the Color Computer.
    • Kaleidophone - A program (and hardware) for creating visual effects based on audio input.

  • New Products - Some new products covered this month include a new Daisy Wheel Printer, a program for creating pie charts, and Infidel, the latest interactive fiction game from Infocom among a number of other things.

  • FOR...NEXT - What's coming next month...

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I love seeing these tidbits on old gaming publications. So many I missed either due to being too young at the time (I was born in 1976) or just not having the money to afford them all.


I'm about the same age as you and I didn't really start buying computer or gaming magazines until probably 1988-ish. They were in the $3 range then and I would typically get one or two a month. Sometime later, in the early 2000s (after I had a real job for a couple of years), on a nostalgia trip I bought several lots of various old magazine on eBay. I haven't priced stuff like that recently but they were reasonably cheap then. Since then I thinned out my collection some but I still have quite a few old magazine lying around. Mostly gaming magazines like VG&CE and EGM and Commodore 64 related magazine. I would still like to find a few of those phone book sized computer shoppers though...