Microsoft BASIC

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Microsoft BASIC is the foundation software product of the Microsoft company and evolved into a line of BASIC interpreters and compiler(s) adapted for many different microcomputers. It first appeared in 1975 as Altair BASIC, which was the first version of BASIC published by Microsoft as well as the first high-level programming language available for the Altair 8800 microcomputer.

Quick facts: Designed by, Developer, First appea...
Microsoft BASIC
Designed byMicrosoft
First appeared1975 (cf. Altair BASIC)
Stable release

During the home computer craze during the late-1970s and early-1980s, BASIC was ported to and supplied with many home computer designs. Slight variations to add support for machine-specific functions, especially graphics, led to a profusion of related designs like Commodore BASIC and Atari Microsoft BASIC.

As the early home computers gave way to newer designs like the IBM Personal Computer and Macintosh, BASIC was no longer as widely used, although it retained a strong following. The release of Visual Basic reboosted its popularity and it remains in wide use on Microsoft Windows platforms in its most recent incarnation, Visual Basic .NET