The Alto was introduced in 1973. To understand this time in computer hardware, the primitive 4004 microprocessor had been introduced a couple years earlier. Practical microprocessors such as the 6502 and Z-80 were still a couple years in the future and the Apple II wouldn't be released until 1977. At the time, minicomputers such as the Data General Nova and PDP-11 built processors out of hundreds of simple but fast TTL integrated circuits, rather than using slow, unreliable MOS chips. The Alto was built similarly, and is a minicomputer, not a microcomputer.
The Alto has 13 circuit boards, crammed full of chips. Each board is a bit smaller than a page of paper, about 7-5/16" by 10", and holds roughly 100 chips (depending on the board). For the most part, the chips are bipolar TTL chips in the popular 7400 series. (The MOS memory chips are an exception.) The image below shows the Alto's card rack and some of the boards.
As a teen Tim Doucette underwent an operation that removed the lenses from his eyes and widened the pupils to deal with congenital cataracts. His daytime vision is still very poor, but night is special. A report from CBC - most of it is in the audio interview.
six degree of freedom IMU sensor package, five DC motors with encoder feedback for flapping and wing articulation (asymmetric wing folding and leg/tail control), power/comm electronics, carbon-fiber frame, and silicone based membrane wings.