March 13th, 2013

Oz Kfest announced

In the tradition of KansasFest, the Australian alternative gathering, Oz Kfest, will happen again this year. When last held in 2009 it caused quite a stir: one prominent Apple II celebrity allegedly lamented that the lack of a followup to this event was their number one gripe. So here it is!  Scheduled to again coincide with KansasFest, Oz Kfest will be happening July 26-28 2013 at Kurilpa Hall, Kurilpa, a suburb of Brisbane in Queensland state.

Registration is now open and session requests and proposals are now being solicited. For more information please visit the website at

You can also join in the weekly “Downunder Chat”, which happens on the A2Central IRC server every Friday night, 9-11pm Australian Eastern time. ( on

March 11th, 2013

Woz to keynote UC Berkeley 2013 Commencement

Following in the footsteps of his Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, who delivered the 2005 Commencement Address to Stanford, Steve Wozniak has been named the keynote speaker for UC Berkeley’s 2013 Commencement program.  Commencement activities are scheduled to begin promptly at 9am on Saturday, May 18, “rain or shine”.  The Daily Californian has the full text of the press release.

February 14th, 2013

Bill Budge to give Pinball Construction Set ‘postmortem’ at GDC 2013


Bill Budge will be making an appearance at GDC 2013 to give a “Classic Postmortem” on his hit software title Pinball Construction Set.  From the GDC 2013 news item:

… Bill Budge, father of the seminal Pinball Construction Set will lay out one of the earliest examples of an in-game editor – a title that game developer legend Will Wright has credited as a key influence on the simulation games that launched him to stardom

Published in 1983 by Electronic Arts, Pinball Construction Set created a new genre in video games that encouraged user generated content where players could trade personalized content via floppy disk. The game’s editor allowed players to construct their own virtual pinball tables, and players could save these tables to disk and trade them with friends.

The editor’s clean and simple interface even served as inspiration to designs behind SimCity six years later – The Sims creator Will Wright cited Pinball Construction Set as his key inspiration while speaking on the GDC 2012 panel “Forgotten Tales Remembered.” Bill Budge, the father of the seminal Construction Set entry, will lay out the blueprints for how he created his own game and one of the earliest examples of an in-game editor.

This should go nicely with Budge’s release of the PBC source code earlier this week.

GDC 2013 is scheduled to take place March 25 – 29, 2013 in San Francisco.  Registration and travel information can be found here.

January 31st, 2013

VCFSE 1.0 Officially Announced

David Greelish, producer of the Vintage Computer Festival Southeast, has issued the following press release officially announcing the new convention:

Announcing the First Ever Vintage Computer Festival Southeast

The original Vintage Computer Festival was founded by Sellam Ismail and held in Pleasanton, California during October, 1997. Now, finally, the southeast region of the US gets its very own!

January 31, 2013, Atlanta, Georgia – Vintage Computer Festival Southeast – a public celebration of computer history and nostalgia – will be held on Saturday & Sunday, April 20 & 21. Our mission remains the same as that very first show:

The main mission of the Vintage Computer Festival is to promote the preservation of "obsolete" computers by offering attendees a chance to experience the technologies, people and stories that embody the remarkable tale of the computer revolution.

We will educate and entertain!

Dozens of exhibitors will be present from all over the region, plus many from other parts of the country. Many different brands of historic computers will be represented in the exhibit hall for live demonstrations by their owners.

A large premier exhibit will welcome each attendee as they enter the festival – The Apple Pop-Up Museum which tells the story of how a small start-up company, founded in a garage by two young friends, became the leading consumer electronics and personal computer company in the world. The exhibit displays an exclusive collection of game-changing Apple personal computers and consumer electronics products while presenting the history of the company since its founding in 1976 to the present. An Apple I and the first Disk II and controller card are among the rare artifacts to be displayed.

A vintage game station will be available for children and adults to play a large variety of classic games on classic computers and game consoles.

Two retrocomputing kit building classes will be held, plus numerous, and inexpensive introduction to soldering classes.

Lectures are still being scheduled now, but our very special keynote speaker and presenter will be announced very soon!

The VCFSE is hosted and produced by the Computer Museum of America and the Atlanta Historical Computing Society.

One-day adult tickets to the VCFSE are just $5. Ages 17 and younger are admitted free. For hours, directions, and other details, please visit (lots more info coming)

January 23rd, 2013

VCF East 9.0 postponed

VCF East 9.0, originally scheduled for May 18th and 19th of this year has been delayed until 2014 due to venue facility damage caused by last year’s Hurricane Sandy.  Evan Koblentz posted the following announcement to the classiccmp mailing list this evening:

VCF East 9.0, scheduled for May 18-19 this year, is postponed to next year. That’s because our venue sustained some Sandy-related damage.

It’s nothing unfixable (and no artifacts in our museum were harmed), but we are not certain about having the buildings repaired in time for the show.

So, in spring 2014, we’ll host VCF East 9.1. ;)

However we will probably have a swap meet and/or other smaller events this year. Details TBD.

December 17th, 2012

Randy Wigginton to keynote KansasFest 2013

The KansasFest committee today announced that Randy Wigginton, Apple employee #6, will keynote the 2013 edition of the annual Apple II convention in Kansas City.

KansasFest 2013, the Apple II convention scheduled for July 23–28 in Kansas City, Missouri, comes on the thirty-fifth anniversary of the Disk ][ disk drive, Apple DOS, and Applesoft BASIC. To celebrate this anniversary, Randy Wigginton, Apple employee #6 and engineer who worked on all three of these innovations, will be the keynote speaker.

Visit the KansasFest web site to read the complete announcement.

November 7th, 2012

KansasFest 2013 announced, 25th year celebration

Apple II Forever! Mark your calendars and plan to attend KansasFest 2013, July 23-28, 2013 at Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Missouri. This will be the event’s 25th annual meeting and the largest gathering of Apple II fanatics in one place from all over the world. It’s sure to be a party and an experience no one will forget. Be there, or regret it forever.

May 3rd, 2012

VCF East 8.0 this weekend

The latest iteration of the Vintage Computer Festival East is taking place this weekend in Wall Township, New Jersey.  At 9:30 am on Saturday, May 5, VCF East 8.0 kicks off a weekend of retro-computing fun at the InfoAge Science Center.  The festivities run through Sunday evening and this year looks to be a great one.  For Apple fans, Daniel Kottke’s Sunday keynote speech will be of special interest, as will Mike Willegal’s “Introduction to Apple II Maintenance” workshop.  To check out the full schedule of events, visit VCF 8.0′s web page. Tickets are $10 for one day, $15 for both days, and FREE for ages 17 and younger. Parking is free.


April 16th, 2012 14 Ways to Celebrate the Apple II’s 35th Birthday

Over at, Technologizer’s Harry McCracken has listed 14 great celebration ideas to commemorate the 35th birthday of the Apple II.  Our favorite?  #13: Attend KansasFest!  Also worth a read: Harry’s 35th Anniversary Tribute to Apple’s First Iconic Product.  And check out the photo gallery while you’re there.

(HT Ken Gagne)

March 2nd, 2012

Robot War Tournament canceled

Jimmy Maher of the excellent Digital Antiquarian blog wrote today to let us know that his proposed Robot War Tournament, which he first announced here, has been canceled due to lack of interest.  From Jimmy’s email:

“Unfortunately… I just don’t think we can muster the participation necessary to make a tournament that feels, well, like a real tournament. We came close, maybe closer than one would have expected, but we didn’t quite get there. Disappointing, but life goes on.”

Sad news indeed, and we thank Jimmy for his continued interest in and support for our chosen hobby.

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