Debunking Commodore 64 exposed on Wikipedia!
Commodore expected C64 users to pay good money to fix their messed up antique BASIC and then not even be able to run these programs on any C64 whose owner hadn’t also paid for what was already built in on nearly all other computers is here. I never even heard of it when I owned a Commodore 64. Commodore also marketed Simon’s BASIC, which was on a cartridge and seemed to be the most widely known extended BASIC, but lots of third party extended BASICs were available.
This kind of incompatibility was common between different dialects of BASIC for the same machine so, again, it’d be hideously unfair to single the C64 out for attention.
Programs written for Applesoft BASIC (pictured on cassette because it came in that form initially and lacked the graphics support the author holds in such high regard) relying on the floating point functionality failed on the earlier Integer BASIC and the reverse is true in some cases too. Similarly, some Spectrum programs for a 48K machine would have issues with the modified 128K BASIC, the implementation of Microsoft BASIC for the Atari 8-bits didn’t like the taste of Atari BASIC programs and so on.
The first home computer had no BASIC at all and, when an official dialect finally turned up, the manufacturer was charging $60 for the 4K variant and $75 for 8K as long as it was purchased with the machine and RAM expansion boards required to run it so there was ample precedent for selling BASIC extensions before Commodore did as well.
I never heard of any extended BASIC which compiled programs, creating stand alone code. That would probably have required a disk drive, but the Commodore 1541 disk drive cost more than the f*ckin’ computer itself
Laser BASIC and Laser BASIC Compiler were the first to spring to mind (along with a couple of cassette-based assemblers which are essentially doing the same thing) so the author’s lack of knowledge is to blame here rather than the C64.
The point about needing a disk drive is true, of course, but apart from the price issue (caused by the 1541 and other Commodore drives being “intelligent” with their own CPU, I/O and RAM on board) the same is true of most other platforms, some even requiring expanded memory or even ROMs mounted so it’s hardly a C64-specific issue.
Oh, and “language Timothy!”