October 27th, 2014

Drop /// Inches interviews Colette Askeland

You probably know that Dr. Wendell Sander is the “father” of the Apple ///, and that Daniel Kottke was the lead tech for the Sara project.  But did you know that before Colette Askeland was doing board layout design for the original Macintosh prototypes, she was the PCB layout artist for the ///?

For some reason, her involvement with Apple’s first business computer has been largely ignored by history, but  Drop /// Inches was fortunate to be able to chat with her about the long hours and difficult work she did before moving on to greater recognition as an original member of the Mac team.  Give it a listen.

October 2nd, 2014

Drop /// Inches podcast #6 released – Don Williams at Phase III

The Phase III conference was organized by the Third Apple User Group in Chicago, held October 2-4, 1987. Dave Ottalini located and digitized his audio recordings of some of the sessions at that conference, and provided them to us. We have been cleaning them up as best we can, and will release them here on the podcast feed. Read the rest of the intro here.

September 25th, 2014

Drop /// Inches podcast #5 released – Dave Ottalini

In this episode, Mike and Paul had the opportunity to speak with Dave Ottalini, co-founder of the Apple /// Special Interest Group of the Washington Apple Pi user group. The entire episode is devoted to this conversation. And stay to the very end for an extremely interesting announcement!

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September 17th, 2014

Drop /// Inches podcast #4 released – WAPster Driving

This month, Paul performs Pascal programming and plays games, while Mike mines the WAP DVD and finds hidden treasure. We discuss the latest MESS emulator developments as they apply to the Apple /// core, as well as music and sound, drivers and much more. Listen now at our page or subscribe in iTunes or your favorite podcast catcher today. Join us, won’t you?

Show Links

August 25th, 2014

Drop /// Inches podcast #3 released – Dream Machines with Egan Ford

EPISODE 3: DREAM MACHINES, WITH EGAN FORD (APPLE3RTR)

In this episode, we talk about some introductory and demo materials, consider some Apple /// “dream systems” and talk with Egan Ford about the work he has done preparing the Apple /// “Ready-to-Run” quick start package for the MESS apple3 emulator.

Subscribe to ‘Drop /// Inches’ via iTunes or download from http://drop-iii-inches.com

June 5th, 2014

Introducing PLASMA 123 (1][///) Preview

Some of you may remember my earlier work on PLASMA, the Proto Language AsSeMbler for Apple. Some of you may even know it will be the language of Lawless Legends (https://www.facebook.com/LawlessLegends). But now, with a flurry of previous concepts and new ideas developed for the LL implementation, comes PLASMA 123. Why 123? Because it runs on the Apple 1, ][, and ///. "No way!", you say. Way. And it runs the exact same PLASMA modules (user programs and libraries) on all three systems, without modification. That's the power of a VM. But this VM was designed specifically for the Apple II (both 64K and 128K fully utilized) and the Apple /// (uses extended memory addressing, up to 512K), from the beginning. The Apple 1 got a quick port because of the awesome CFFA1 (Rich may still have some left).

Now this is a pretty early announcement, but I thought some of the more technically adventurous may want to take a look and provide some feedback, or at least poke at it. You can find all the source and preliminary documentation on GitHub: https://github.com/dschmenk/PLASMA

There is a demo disk image in the GitHub project: DEMO.0.9.PO - it is a dual booting disk for the Apple II and III. It will boot into a simple command line prompt. The commands are:

c - catalog current path
c - catalog path
v - list on-line device volumes
p - set prefix to path
+ - run PLASMA file
- - run SYSTEM file (Apple II only)

There are only two sample PLASMA programs to run on this image: HELLO and TEST. Run them, as documented above, with '+hello' and '+test'.

The HELLO module is pretty simple. The TEST module actually loads a module dependency, TESTLIB, as it runs. It is just my language test coverage module, using a bunch of different aspects of PLASMA. If you see a bunch of junk on the screen with HELLO on your Apple ][ or ][+, that means you don’t have a lower-case adapter and I haven’t forced the output on those machines to upper case yet.

So now we have the grand unifying environment for the 8 bit Apples. And it’s fast. I developed some new interpreter technology for this version: about 3 times slower than native compiled 6502, but about 10 times as dense, and code doesn’t take up precious main memory (on 128K Apple II or Apple III). You can still write ASM functions inside your PLASMA module for those times that speed is critical above all else.

Dave…

May 19th, 2014

New Apple /// podcast announced, Drop /// Inches

Today is the Apple ///’s 34th birthday, and Mike Maginnis has used this auspicious date to announce he is starting a new podcast with fellow Apple /// enthusiast Paul Hagstrom. Dedicated to the (you guessed it) Apple /// computer, the ‘Drop /// Inches’ podcast is named tongue in cheek after the infamous troubleshooting step used to re-seat RAM chips in malfunctioning Apple /// computers.


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Check out ‘Drop /// Inches’ web site for more details.

September 23rd, 2013

Ultra-rare Apple UniFile ‘Twiggy’ drive seen on eBay

For those of you who don’t follow my Twitter account, here’s an exceedingly rare Apple UniFile Twiggy drive to look (drool?) over. It’s up for auction on eBay, starting at USD $3,750 or with a buy it now option of $6,000. Bazinga.

January 20th, 2012

Bob Cook of Sun Remarketing interviewed

David Greelish, who last month made tech news headlines for his in-depth interview with John Sculley and his troubled relationship with Steve Jobs during their days together at Apple, has posted an audio interview he conducted with Bob Cook.  Cook, owner of an early Apple dealership, established Sun Remarketing in 1985 and grew it into a successful direct marketing enterprise, eventually selling over $100 million in used Apple II, III, Lisa and Macintosh equipment before selling the company in 2006.  The Sun Remarketing name will no doubt be familiar to Apple II users as a reliable source of quality, affordable hardware long after Apple Computer, Inc. discontinued their favorite machines.

Among other stories, Bob relates his experiences with getting the business off the ground by selling 3,500 Apple III’s that were formerly used by Apple employees, before Jobs ordered them replaced by Macintosh’s (the III’s, not the employees), as well as having to watch the more than 2,700 Lisa computers in his inventory taken from his warehouse by Apple and buried in the legendary Utah landfill.

You can listen to the interview, which clocks in at just over 45 minutes, here.

January 7th, 2012

Washington Apple Pi Apple /// DVD Reclassified as Public Domain

Dave Ottalini of the Washington Apple Pi user group announced today on Facebook that their Apple /// DVD, which formerly sold for $45, is now reclassified as public domain.  Here’s the text of David’s announcement:

Folks – I’d like to let you know that I’ve decided to put the old Apple /// DVD into the public domain so that the information there can be freely accessed. If Mike or anyone cares to upload that material they are welcome!

Note that the video DVD of using the Apple /// in ten EZ Lessons can also go into the PD as far as I’m concerned.

The DVD .iso is currently being uploaded to apple2scans.net and should be available later today.  This is great news from Dave and we thank him for his generous decision.

UPDATE: The 4.5GB image has been uploaded and is available now.  Get it here.

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