Ian Kim of South Korea is a busy person. He’s apparently working on a Z80 co-processor board that will run MSX programs on the Apple II. I’ve used Google Translate (the site is on Korean) to get a pretty good translation here.
This is an update to our prior post from March 28th, 2016.
We’re excited to announce the official release of the Universal PSU Kit and Upgrade service from Ultimate-Micro.com.
The Universal PSU works Internationally and with all AC power from 90 to 264V, and 47 to 63Hz. The Universal PCB mounts in any Apple II or /// Enclosure. We Universally have you covered!
The Universal PSU Kit is designed to be installed in your existing Apple II or /// Power Supply Enclosure and replace your old Power Supply PCB. All connections can be made by the user and are safe, simple, and designed to last for the next decade and beyond of use. The Kit is also uninstallable and the enclosure isn’t modified in any way. So those concerned with collecting and authenticity of hardware need not worry.
The Kit is the user-installable version of the Universal PSU. The Upgrade is the service where the user sends Ultimate-Micro a Power Supply Enclosure and we perform the install process for the user and return the upgraded Power Supply. We also have a KFEST option and special show price for those who would like to take delivery at KFEST. We’re still not sure about holding an informal session, possibly during SolderFest to assist in upgrades, but we’re working on those details and looks like it will happen. Someone from Ultimate-Micro will also be in attendance to help answer questions or assist as needed.
Orders are planned to start shipping about July 15th or once we have received stock from the factory.
We’re also pleased to announce two Community members have reviewed the Universal PSU Kit and have posted videos of their installation.
Chris Torrence and his IIe Power Supply
Joe Strosnider and his IIgs Power Supply
The Universal PSU Kit Install Guide is available for review here: https://goo.gl/t1SZEi
We’re glad to help bring the Apple II and /// in to the remainder of the 21st Century and hopefully beyond!
The Atlantic has a great article by Adrienne LaFrance illustrating the impact of 80’s gaming on today’s Internet culture. The author attributes her childhood experience with her Apple //c and the Apple II platform is prominently featured throughout the article.
Recently, Juiced.GS Magazine (the longest running Apple II print publication in existence) announced their solidarity with Apple Inc. in their fight for privacy and security against government eavesdropping. Not unexpectedly, this placed Juiced.GS in the cross-hairs of the FBI and other governmental agencies within the umbrella of Department of Homeland Security; if popular, influential magazines such as Juiced.GS were allowed to encrypt their content, then rowdy Atari and Commodore anarchists wouldn’t be too far behind. Where would it end?
Sources speaking confidentially with A2Central (because they were not authorized to do so) claimed the FBI wanted Juiced.GS decrypted, or “unlocked” and had initially requested the assistance of the NSA’s Advanced Code-breaking Unit (ACU) which uses super-computing and artificial intelligence resources to decrypt foreign government communications. That option allegedly wasn’t immediately available due to its current task of decoding McDonalds Monopoly prize pieces in an effort to win free Frappe Mocha, french fries and other freebies for the organization’s night shift. Conjecture indicates the NSA staff may have had an unprecedented case of the munchies.
A lengthy battle in the court of public opinion and eventual legal proceedings seemed imminent. However, it may have turned out to be an unnecessary and overly elaborate exercise as the FBI and Homeland Security now claim they can access Juiced.GS content without ACU intervention. An unidentified third-party is assisting the agency establish a subscription to the magazine that has the encryption feature disabled.
We are excited to introduce Nox Archaist, a new role playing game we are developing exclusively for the Apple II platform and emulators. Currently we are targeting a release date sometime this year. Nox Archaist will be available 100% free and the complete assembly source code will be posted on our blog as development progresses.
Nox Archaist is a 2D tile based fantasy RPG with a classic Apple II look and feel. We are taking advantage of the full 128k available on the IIe and later models which will help us create features and effects that may not have been seen in vintage 1980s Apple games. Game play videos and screenshots showing the current evolution of the Nox Archaist game engine are available below.
Please send us your comments and suggestions! We would like to include many community sourced ideas into the game.
http://www.6502workshop.com – Nox Archaist website with our blog, current gameplay video, screenshots, and gifs.
Demo gameplay video featuring the current game engine.
6502 Workshop Mission:
- Develop a fun game CRPG enthusiasts will enjoy playing
- Include ideas and feature sourced from the Apple II community when possible
- Explore a modern evolution of the Apple II RPG genre
- Create a repository of hard to find technical information on developing Apple II games
- Determine how many two layer shrubberies with a path down the middle will fit on the Apple II hi-res screen
Nox Archaist Technical Details:
- Runs on any 128k Apple IIe or later system
- Physical machines and modern emulators are supported
- Current game testing is being done on a physical Apple IIe and in AppleWin
- Coded entirely in 6502 Assembler, no construction sets used
Coming soon from UltimateMicro: a new heavy duty universal power supply for the Apple II, II+, //e, IIGS and Apple ///. The circuit board for the power supply will feature multiple mount points and snap-offs to accommodate any of the standard power supply enclosures used in the Apple II and /// series and possibly even those from Applied Engineering and Applied Ingenuity. The UM-UPS will likely be available as both a DIY kit and as a fully assembled product ready for mounting in your enclosure. You will also have the option of having UltimateMicro upgrade your existing power supply by sending it in and paying for labor. Pricing has not yet been announced for this product or upgrade services.
The Scalable Oscillator has been revised and now we have the v2.0 versions for the Zip-GS and the Transwarp GS. Although identical in function, the new Scalable Oscillator circuit boards were redesigned for reliability and accuracy by using a higher grade clock IC. Both have fuse protection and a diagnostic power LED to let the user know the card is powered on. Either product is available for a very reasonable USD $40 plus shipping.
Lastly, we have the replacement DuoDisk cable. It’s a common occurrence for Apple II enthusiasts to find 5.25 DuoDisk Disk Drives missing their interface cable, or sometimes it’s been cut-off. It doesn’t help that the cable is somewhat non-standard. Good news! UltimateMicro will soon have a solution for you!
Vintage Computer Festivals are like no other events! Come join us for a few days of family-friendly historic computing awesomeness. Each event has a hands-on exhibition hall where you can see and try computers from the 1960s-1980s. There are also keynote lectures, technical classes, special attractions, and much more.
There are four U.S. editions of the Vintage Computer Festival scheduled for 2016.
VCF Southeast — April 2-3, Atlanta region
VCF East — April 15-17, central New Jersey
Online ticketing and exhibit registration is open!
VCF West — August 6-7, Silicon Valley
Online ticketing and exhibit registration is open!
VCF Midwest — September 10-11, Chicago region
Want a VCF show in your area? Let us know! – Contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Be sure to check out the Vintage Computer Forums!
UtlimateMicro has re-released their clone of the highly sought after Apple II 3.5 “SuperDrive” Disk Controller. Known also by it’s Apple code name, the “Mustang Controller” allows you to use standard Apple 3.5 and Apple SuperDrives on your enhanced Apple IIe (and IIGS).
It’s a much better option versus the slower Liron/UniDisk 3.5 combination or VTech Universal Disk Controller (which can also be hard to find). In addition to reading Apple’s GCR format, it can also read IBM formatted MFM disks (an enabled MS-DOS file system translator required).
Available now for USD $149.99 plus shipping and handling.