July 16th, 2019

Marinetti 3.0b11 is now available

A new version of Marinetti, the implementation of TCP/IP for the Apple IIgs, is now publicly available.

The previous public announcement of a release of Marinetti was 3.0b9 in July 2018. Since then there have been several bug fix versions that have not been made widely available. This release includes fixes for the following issues:

– TCPIPSendIPDatagram was not using the correct Direct Page and looks like it never worked correctly.
– TCPIPReadLineTCP now returns the correct error code and TCP error code to the caller. This would have resulted in strange behaviour for applications that use this call.
– There was an issue with TCPIPReadLine returning strange data when used after TCPIPReadLineTCP. This would have resulted in strange behaviour for applications that use this call combination.
– The TCP stack would erroneously reset a connection in response to an unclaimed packet that is not part of that connection. This would have resulted in strange behaviour for applications.
– The MSS Option has been added to TCP Headers which tells hosts that they can send larger packets to Marinetti. This may improve performance e.g. with file transfers.

For more information on the above issues, refer to the ChangeLog included in the release for the ticket number and then refer to the related ticket on Sourceforge.

While this software is still officially classed as ‘beta’ software, it has been extensively tested. It is highly recommended that existing users of 3.0b3 and 3.0b9 upgrade to this version.

Marinetti 3.0b11 can be downloaded from the Marinetti homepage as a Shrinkit archive, or soon from the a2RetroSystems website where it will be available as a disk image that can be mounted in an emulator or a disk emulation device like the CFFA. The disk image includes the original Marinetti 3.0b1 installer for new installations if necessary and a replacement Init which contains the latest changes. Ewen Wannop’s latest Uthernet link layers are also provided.

Marinetti was originally written by Richard Bennett in 1996 and was subsequently released as an open-source project. It is now maintained by members of the Marinetti Open Source Project, which is hosted on SourceForge.

June 26th, 2019

Juiced.GS Volume 24, Issue 2 now available

Juiced.GS Volume 24, Issue 2 (June 2019)Volume 24, Issue 2 (June 2019) of Juiced.GS, the longest-running Apple II publication in print, has now shipped.

This issue features a look at PLATO, a 1960s mainframe program being used to create a modern online retrocomputing community; a comparison of BASIC alternatives to Applesoft; reflections on an interview with Steve Meretzky of Infocom fame; a tutorial for converting MP3s to Apple IIGS rSound format; and much, much more!

This is Juiced.GS‘s second quarterly issue of 2019, its twenty-fourth year in print. Subscriptions for 2019 are available for $20 each for United States customers, $25 for readers in Canada and Mexico, and $28 for international customers.

May 10th, 2019

Nox Archaist Kickstarter is LIVE!

The 6502 Workshop team is pleased to announce that the Kickstarter campaign for the boxed edition of Nox Archaist is now live!

Click here to pledge!

What’s better than a brand new, hand-coded 8-bit classic 80s era tile based RPG?  Answer: One that comes in an awesome collector’s edition box with lots of cool physical goodies!

What’s even better than that?  When the game will also feature an NPC appearance by Lord British, the alter ego of Richard Garriott, the creator of the Ultima series of games!

Pledges include the following awesome stuff:

  • Full color collector’s game box
  • Cloth map
  • Printed manual
  • Game artifacts such as coins of the realm and various other cool trinkets

Nox Archaist Kickstarter

All Nox Archaist boxed editions will include 5.25″ floppy disks for real Apple II hardware and a flash drive for Mac and Windows PC emulators. The game will also run on real and emulated hard drives with ProDOS installed.

6502 Workshop can’t wait to get Nox Archaist into a collector’s edition box and put it in your hands.

Click here to pledge!

April 22nd, 2019

GitHub celebrates release of Infocom source code

The source code for 45 Infocom text adventures is now available in its native ZIL (Zork Implementation Language) from GitHub.

According to the code repository’s readme file, “This collection is meant for education, discussion, and historical work, allowing researchers and students to study how code was made for these interactive fiction games and how the system dealt with input and processing. It is not considered to be under an open license.” But notes Gamasutra, “… Activision, which purchased Infocom in 1986, still owns the company IP, meaning it could eventually clamp down and halt Scott’s preservation efforts.”

To commemorate the release of this code, GitHub will host the live event “Game On I: The Great Quest for Imagination“, on the afternoon of Friday, April 26, 2019, 3–6:30 PM PDT (UTC-7) at its headquarters at 88 Colin P Kelly Jr St, San Francisco, California, USA. Steve Meretzky, the sole or lead designer on such Infocom games as The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, A Mind Forever Voyaging, Planetfall, and Leather Goddesses of Phobos, will be the guest of honor. The event will be moderated by Kevin Savetz of the Eaten by a Grue podcast. Topics will include Infocom, working with ZIL, putting the source code on GitHub, and the evolution of software and version control. Following the discussion will be a happy hour, during which game stations will be set up all where people can have fun with Infocom titles and multiplayer games. The event is open to the public; free registration is required. It will also be livestreamed online.

For more on the history of Infocom, watch Jason Scott’s Infocom documentary, included as part of Get Lamp.
Read the rest of this entry »

March 23rd, 2019

Juiced.GS Volume 24, Issue 1 now available

Juiced.GS Volume 24, Issue 1 (March 2019)Volume 24, Issue 1 (March 2019) of Juiced.GS, the longest-running Apple II publication in print, has now shipped.

This issue features a review of the VidHD card; a tutorial for exporting Apple IIGS files in PostScript format; a behind-the-scenes look at the upcoming Kickstarter for Nox Archaist; an interview with Randy Ubillos, developer of the II in a Mac emulator; a comparison of the Apple-1 to the Apple II; and much, much more!

This is Juiced.GS‘s first quarterly issue of 2019, its twenty-fourth year in print. Subscriptions for 2019 are available for $20 each for United States customers, $25 for readers in Canada and Mexico, and $28 for international customers.

March 8th, 2019

Mark Pelczarski to keynote KansasFest 2019

Mark Pelczarski – 1983

KansasFest 2019, the 31st annual Apple II convention, is scheduled for July 16 – 21 in Kansas City, Missouri. Mark Pelczarski of Penguin Software, well-known for numerous graphics utilities, books, and games, will join us with a keynote presentation to celebrate the Apple II.

Pelczarski began publishing graphics-related Apple II software in 1978 while in his early 20’s under the brands Penguin Software and Polarware.  He is an entrepreneur, author, programmer, consultant, and professional educator.  Mark is well known for the Graphics Magician software, a toolkit for creating graphics that includes over 50 major software publishers as customers including Random House, Sierra Online, Spinnaker, and Mattel.  He wrote monthly columns for Softalk and the book Graphically Speaking.  Besides pioneering computer graphics, Polarware published numerous games including Transylvania, The Coveted Mirror, and Spy’s Demise.  After leaving Polarware in 1987, Mark turned his attention to computer music and to online courses.  Mark once said “I like to make computers do things,” so he’ll surely fit in at KansasFest.

KansasFest is an annual convention offering Apple II users and retrocomputing enthusiasts the opportunity to engage in beginner and technical sessions, programming contests, exhibition halls, and camaraderie. KansasFest was originally hosted by Resource Central and has been brought to you by the KFest committee since 1995. Any and all Apple II users, fans, and friends are invited to attend this year’s event. Registration details will be announced on the KansasFest Web site, and registration will open on March 31. For photos, videos, and presentations from past KansasFests, please visit the event’s official Website.

March 4th, 2019

Nox Archaist Kickstarter: May 2nd

6502 Workshop is launching a Kickstarter campaign on May 2, 2019 to produce a collector’s edition of Nox Archaist!

Pledge rewards will include lots of cool feelies with professional artwork, such as:

  • Full color collector’s game box
  • Cloth map
  • Printed manual
  • Unique game artifacts
  • 5.25″ Floppy disks and a USB stick for emulators
Nox Archaist box art

Their goal is to give you the experience of buying a game off the shelf of your local computer store in the late 80s, and also give you the chance to be involved in the game design and success of a modern Apple II game!

UPDATE: This Kickstarter is now live!
February 17th, 2019

QFest 12 Announcement [Updated]

UPDATE 2: Due to other commitments arising QFest 12 has been postponed.

UPDATE: Due to unforeseen circumstances, I unfortunately have to postpone WOzFest 12:00 – the new date is Saturday 25 May 2019, all other details remain the same. Steve in Brisbane has decided to also postpone QFest 12 to the same date.

From the europlus zone blog:

From our Northern Apple ][ Compadres comes the following announcement:

I am very happy to announce QFest 12, to be held in Brisbane on Saturday 27 April 2019, concurrent with WOzFest 12:00 and GORF, starting around midday Brisbane time (UTC+10:00).

As with previous QFests, there will be projects to work on, and an Applesauce on hand. We will enjoy video hook-ups with our Apple II brothers and sisters at other events around Australia. All food and drink will be provided.

Steven Kazoullis

Further details on the announcement post, and updates will be posted under the europlus zone’s WOzFest tag.

February 16th, 2019

WOzFest 12:00 Announcement [Updated]

UPDATE: Due to unforeseen circumstances, I unfortunately have to postpone WOzFest 12:00 – the new date is Saturday 25 May 2019, all other details remain the same. Steve in Brisbane has decided to also postpone QFest 12 to the same date.

From the europlus zone blog:

I’m very happy to announce the date for the next WOzFestWOzFest 12:00 – Saturday 27 April 2019, starting around midday Sydney time (UTC+10:00).

The primary theme for WOzFest 12:00 is “time” – encompassing, among other things, time-related hardware and software, the ravages of time and what we might (or might not) do about them, and strategies for finding time to have fun with our retrocomputers.

Something new this WOzFest is a theme-related hardware project for attendees – it’ll be a treat to have the first WOzFest-branded product for attendees to work on, and the first product release at a WOzFest for some time. It’s an international collaboration which spans the timezones, and all I can say about the release of this particular product is: it’s about time!

For several reasons, there’ll be a secondary theme this time, and one not unrelated to prior WOzFests – preservation with the ApplesauceApplesauce is John Morris’ phenomenal USB interface for Apple ][ disk drives which takes Apple ][ software preservation to new heights by capturing magnetic flux-level images of disks. My interest in such devices goes back a way.

I’m still to organise any Skype calls but I am hoping we’ll be able to organise some sort of video hookup to GORF – The Great Oz Retro-Technology Festival – being held in Melbourne 24-28 April 2019 and organised by frequent WOzFest attendees Melody and April. There’ll definitely be another video hookup, which I hope to share details of shortly.

Further details on the announcement post, and updates will be posted under the europlus zone’s WOzFest tag.

February 7th, 2019

Retro computing event in Melbourne Australia April 2019

Update: Unfortunately GORF was cancelled in early April due to lack of registrations.

The Great Oz Retro-Fest, (GORF) is a multi-day event celebrating the personal computing platforms of the 1970s, 80s and 90s including the Apple, Microbee, Commodore, Atari, Sinclair and other 8- and 16-bit computer lines. GORF is being produced by Teaching Electronics and Computing History (TECH) Inc. which is an Australian not-for-profit association.

GORF is happening from April 24th-28th 2019 at Urban Camp in Melbourne, Australia. Similar to KansasFest there is bunk-style accommodation provided on-site and participants are encouraged to live-in for the duration of the event.

Keynote speakers include Owen Hill, an original employee of Microbee Systems; Ewan Wordsworth Director of Microbee Technology Pty Ltd; as well as retro-technology researcher Dr. Melanie Swalwell from the Play It Again project.

Participants are also encouraged to give sessions, so the format will be very similar to the well known KansasFest and OzKFest events.

The cost of the event will be AU$360 (~USD$260) which includes 4 nights bunk style accommodation and most meals. Day passes will also be available.
Registrations close April 1st.

The GORF organizing committee includes Melody Ayres-Griffiths, the editor of Paleotronic Magazine, and past participant at Kansasfest and OzKFest events.

While in Melbourne, visit the Play-It-Again exhibition of a playable history of Australasian games at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image.

About TECH Inc
Teaching Electronics and Computing History (TECH) Inc. is an Australian not-for-profit association incorporated in the state of Victoria. The purposes of the association are to promote awareness and understanding of the fundamentals and history of electronics-based technologies such as computers through various means, including the creation of software, print and web-based materials, the holding of events and exhibitions, acquisition of items of historical significance for restoration and display, and any other activities as deemed appropriate by its members.

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