September 10th, 2014

Joe Ely releases album recorded with an Apple II, with liner notes by Woz

Texas rocker Joe Ely has released B4 84, an album he made with an Apple II, using the alphaSyntauri music system and a Roland 808 drum machine.  In a brief interview with the San Antonio Current, Ely discusses the details of the album, which was recorded over 30 years ago, his interactions with Woz, and how his record company liked the songs but wanted him to re-record them using traditional studio methods.  The redone tracks were released on 1984’s Hi-res album which, “didn’t do very well.”

Now Joe has released the original recordings and you can get your own copy for $9.99 on iTunes, with liner notes by Steve Wozniak himself.

 

b484_cover

 

Oh, and hey – did you know Joe ran his own BBS back in they day?

August 30th, 2014

Open Apple #38 (Aug 2014): Lawless Legends dev team, KansasFest

Open Apple #38 is published (still August – just made it. Whew!). If you’re a subscriber, it should be appearing in your favorite RSS reader or iTunes shortly if it hasn’t already.

This month on Open Apple, we go deep on Lawless Legends with most of the team building it. We’ve managed to corner Seth Sternberger (of 8-bit Weapon fame), Martin Haye, and Brendan Robert (Dave Schmenk, we’re coming for you…) to grill them on this amazing effort. We also wish a fond farewell to co-host Ken Gagne, and welcome our new co-host Quinn Dunki. Listeners can look forward to more angry sarcasm and less professionalism here on Open Apple. Of course, we also ramble some more about KansasFest 2014. Because KansasFest.

http://www.open-apple.net/2014/08/30/show-038-lawless-legends-team-kansasfest/

December 31st, 2013

Business Insider – Early pics of Apple employees

Business Insider has a short article on Apple’s earliest days, including behind-the-scene pictures of employees and operations.

November 5th, 2013

John Romero and Craig Johnston launch Apple Time Warp podcast

There’s a new Apple II podcast, and it’s hosted by Craig Johnston and (*the*) John Romero. Check out the pilot episode of Apple Time Warp, available on iTunes or as a direct download here. If you’re a serious Apple II enthusiast, prepare to squee! It’s really very good.


AppleTimeWarp

Apple Time Warp is a nostalgic look at the early years of Apple II gaming featuring stories of the programmers and software companies that brought computer gaming out of it’s infancy and into the mainstream. Let’s hope they do the Apple Time Warp again. It’s just a JMP to the left…

Thanks and additional reading via Ken Gagne of Apple II Bits

September 12th, 2013

Original Mac dev team gathers to remember the Twiggy Drive

As an Apple II fan site, we don’t post very many articles about our frenemy, the Macintosh. That’s unfortunate, because I’ve often felt several of the Macintoshes (especially later models) were amongst the best Apple II peripherals ever made.

This story posted on CNET today is an exception, as it features pictures and anecdotes from many of the early Apple employees who worked on the Apple II and the first Mac. Check out Apple’s ‘Twiggy Mac’ comes back to life by Dan Farber. It’s an interesting read for Apple history buffs.

August 3rd, 2013

Open Apple special KansasFest 2013 coverage

The Open Apple team forced Carrington Vanston of 1 MHz and KansasFest first-timer Kevin Savetz of the new (and excellent) ANTIC: The 8-bit Atari Podcast into a room in the basement of Corcoran Hall at Rockhurst to record the very first Open ANTIChertz.

Listen in as we discuss KFest goings-on, from Kevin’s impressions — both as a newcomer to the week-long convention and as a life-long Atari fan — to Randy Wigginton’s keynote, the appearance of a working Apple-1, and did someone mention Woz? Yes, for what feels like the thousandth time, Mike recounts the harrowing tale of how we got the Apple co-founder and creator of our favorite computers to return to Kansas City on the 10th anniversary of his keynote speech, and 25th anniversary of our favorite summer camp for geeks. Download our collaborative KansasFest report now!

Then Mike and Ken kick out their guests just in time to hustle Woz away from the hectic crowds of Apple II fans for a few minutes, and sit him down for an interview. Did the Apple co-founder have fun at Rockhurst this year? Listen to our interview to find out!

April 3rd, 2013

Seen on CNET: The untold story behind Apple’s $13,000 operating system

Tech news giant CNET gave the Apple II some love today, posting an article about how Apple’s original DOS came into existence. Coincidentally, this is one of the themes we will be interactively exploring with Randy Wigginton at this year’s KansasFest. Be there or regret it forever.

December 16th, 2012

Author of “Elk Cloner” Apple II virus interviewed

“Elk Cloner,” largely believed to be the first computer virus released outside a lab environment, turned 30 this year and tech news website The Register took the opportunity to interview its author Rich Skrenta, who was just 15 at the time of its release in February, 1982.

The boot sector virus was written for Apple II systems, the dominant home computers of the time, and infected floppy discs. If an Apple II booted from an infected floppy disk, Elk Cloner became resident in the computer’s memory. Uninfected discs inserted into the same computer were given a dose of the malware just as soon as a user keyed in the command CATALOG for a list of files. Infected computers would display a short poem, also written by Skrenta, on every fiftieth boot from an infected disk:

Elk Cloner: The program with a personality
It will get on all your disks It will infiltrate your chips Yes it’s Cloner!
It will stick to you like glue It will modify ram too Send in the Cloner!

According to Skrenta, who wrote the program as a prank, “Elk Cloner created a rattling noise when the program started. If a disc was infected you could hear it. If you inserted an infected disc in an Apple II you can hear the head swoosh sound, an audible signature. It would infect a new disc if machine wasn’t rebooted. If an Apple II was rebooted every time, Elk Cloner wouldn’t have spread. But, given people computer habits, it spread like crazy.”

Wikipedia has a brief description of the virus here, and Skrenta maintains a page of information about Elk Cloner, including historical articles, an alt.hackers Usenet post from 1990, and source code for the program.

 

August 17th, 2012

Trip Hawkins interview

Edge Online has posted an extensive interview with EA founder and early Apple employee, Trip Hawkins.  The long piece has been serialized and posted over several days.  Among other things, Hawkins talks about his time at a young Apple Computer; founding Electronic Arts and dealing with “superstar” programmers such as Richard Garriott, Dan Bunten, and Bill Budge; and Steve Jobs’ influence on his managerial style.

Start reading with part 1 – “The Inspiration for EA”, and then find the rest of the interview sections here.

 

 

(HT: Hot Rod)

June 24th, 2012

GET LAMP raw interviews posted

Documentary director and tech historian Jason Scott announced today that the raw interview footage from his most recently released film, GET LAMP: An Interactive Documentary, has been posted and is available for viewing over at the Internet Archive.  Generally speaking, these interviews are extended versions of what you saw in the film, or items that for whatever reason, didn’t make it into Scott’s final cut.  (This isn’t the first time he has done this – you can view hours upon hours of extra video from his first film, BBS: The Documentary, here.)  If you’re a fan of Scott’s work or just interested in technology in general, this footage, comprised of over 50 individual interviews, is well worth viewing, and after you’re done, you can go buy a copy of the movie.

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