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ANTIC The Atari 8-bit Podcast

hosts: Randy Kindig, Kay Savetz, Brad Arnold
twitter: @AtariPodcast
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Jun 13, 2017

Jay Balakrishnan, HESWare

Welcome to an interview-only episode of ANTIC The Atari 8-bit Computer Podcast.  My name is Randy Kindig.  Jay Balakrishnan bought his first Commodore PET in 1978, which spurred him to found Human Engineered Software (HES or HESWare) in 1980.  HESWare got its start on the Commodore PET but later moved into many other platforms.  They developed or sold software for C64, Vic-20, Atari 8-bit, Apple II, Atari ST, Amiga, ZX Spectrum, Dragon, TI-99, DOS and others.  Many Llamasoft games, through an alliance with Jeff Minter, were published in the US by HESWare.  For the Atari 8-bit, they published games like Pastfinder, River Raid, Decathlon, Space Shuttle, Attack of the Mutant Camels, Gridrunner.

By early 1984 InfoWorld estimated that HES was tied with Broderbund as the world's tenth-largest microcomputer-software company and largest entertainment-software company.

In early 1984 they made their biggest splash when they acquired the services of Leonard Nimoy as spokesman.

This interview took place on November 20, 2016.