October 31st, 2008

Juiced.GS free sample issue — with KFest 2008 coverage!

Juiced.GS has given us a Halloween treat with a new 12-page sample issue! This PDF features content taken from the magazine’s first and third issues of Volume 13 (2008), including an interview with Dan Budiac, who bought an Apple IIc off eBay for $2,553; a review of the MicroDrive/Turbo card from ReactiveMicro.com; and KansasFest 2008 coverage. The PDF is available immediately as a free download from the Juiced.GS Web site.

Juiced.GS publishes four 20-page issues of Apple II news, reviews, interviews, and features every year. Subscriptions for 2008 and 2009 are currently being accepted at the Juiced.GS online store.

October 31st, 2008

Another new Apple //c on eBay

Back in January of 2008, the Apple II community was buzzing over a brand new Apple //c that sold for over $2500 on eBay. Here we go again — another new Apple //c, but this one has been out of the box (but never booted) and has a starting price of $1500 USD.

October 29th, 2008

GShisen now available for iPhone

If you’ve ever played GShisen, the incredibly addictive puzzle game for the Apple IIGS, then you’ll be happy to know you can now take it on the road. Kelvin Sherlock, the game’s programmer, has created a version for the Apple iPhone mobile device. iShisen is now available from the iPhone App Store for the low, low price of $0.99.

And for those of you with neither an iPhone or an Apple IIGS, you can always play FlaShisen in your Web browser.

October 29th, 2008

New Apple II sites

Dale Stewart wrote in to tell us about Apple II Downunder (http://www.apple2downunder.net), a site for Australian Apple II enthusiasts that features forums, online chat and more. According to Dale, “the aim of Apple II Downunder is to provide a meeting place for Aussie and international Apple II geek brethren to share ideas and all things Apple II.”

And we have a couple of new blogs written by retro-enthusiasts who are rediscovering the Apple II. Check out Apple II Adventures (http://www.mozomedia.com/apple2/) and Apple //e (http://apple2e.blogspot.com/) for a fresh look at your old friend.

October 28th, 2008

Apple II game Lemonade Stand coming to iPhone

TouchArcade reports that Lemonade Stand is being remade for the iPhone. Although the graphics are being redone, the gameplay, economics and even music will be carried over from the classic Apple II version. The game should be available in the App Store this week.

October 20th, 2008

Richard Garriott in space

A common question for old-school Apple II celebrities is, “Where are they now?” When that person is Richard Garriott, creator of the Ultima line of computer role-playing games, the answer is “217 miles up.”

On October 12, 2008, Garriott boarded the Soyuz TMA-13 and launched to the International Space Station. The journey makes him the world’s sixth space tourist and its first second-generation astronaut — his father, scientist Owen K. Garriott, flew aboard the Skylab 3 and STS-9 missions in in 1973 and 1986, respectively. The trip cost the younger Garriott approximately $30 million US dollars.

Though he is now out of this world, Garriott has long been known for being of the world of Britannia, the fantastical setting of his Ultima series in which he plays the ruling monarch, Lord British. He returns to Earth on October 23. You can view videos of Garriott’s extraterrestrial adventure and read his blog online at

http://www.richardinspace.com/

October 16th, 2008

Mahon’s Applecrate site moving

Michael Mahon’s popular AppleCrate and NadaNet (among other projects) site is moving. Please update your bookmarks. The new address is:

http://home.comcast.net/~mjmahon/

October 16th, 2008

Random Access (10-16-08)

With the help of my friend and fellow Apple II user James Littlejohn, I’ve finally been going through my collection of Apple II and Macintosh gear. I knew I had a lot of stuff — too much stuff actually. It’s often been a source of friction at times with my Wife. I’ve had gear strewn all over our house from years of collecting, donations, etc. and it was high time to do something about it.

My goal is to NEATLY squeeze most of the retro-gear I want to tinker with into my basement office and use no more than 3 (maybe 4) storage racks in the garage for the spare parts I have. Oh, and still have room to work on the newer tech that keeps me employed.

Last weekend we started the initial sorting and purging. There were several times when we discovered something new I didn’t realize I had, or we found an item that I thought was lost for good. I was also able to finally get a slightly better grip on inventory. One of the best examples of how “off” I’ve been on what I thought I had in storage is Unidisk 3.5 drives. I was pretty sure I had 3 or 4 drives, but in actuality I have 13 and there might be more. Wow. They were all over the place!

James has been a big, BIG help doing a lot of the sorting, stacking and heavy lifting for me. He says he’s doing it for fun, and because he’d heard about my “legendary” collection over the years and wanted to see it for himself. In past years, I’d open the garage up to KansasFest attendees to freely pick over the extra gear and machines I had. Apparently the collection has a reputation in the Apple II community… but don’t expect roadside billboards proclaiming “Come see The Biggest Pile of Apple II Junk in the Midwest” any time soon. There are other collections bigger and more impressive than mine — Tony Diaz certainly has more interesting things (prototypes galore) and Jamie Steffens and others have tons o’ software I’d love to play with.

Purging the stuff is the hard part. Deciding on what to keep, give away and sometimes throw away takes effort, discipline and determination. I’ve been giving James the option of hauling off anything I didn’t want to keep… Well, that’s not quite right, I’d probably keep everything and be right back in the mess I’m in now. It’s more like “things I’d have kept, but realized I don’t have the room or time to deal with it anymore” type of situation. Woof! Giving the stuff away to James helps me feel better, since he won’t accept money or anything for the hard work he’s put into helping me.

I’ve dumped extra machines, premium parts, hard drives, CD-ROM drives, tape drives, Woz GS lids, misc. gear, software, manuals and much, much more that James has loaded into his 1972 Chevy bus. Yeah – he drove his bus up, and for good reason. We filled it up with stuff I didn’t want anymore. No pickup, mini-van or car would have held all the gear I gave him. I wanted to get rid of more but the bus was overflowing, and he wouldn’t load anything else on it this trip. He’s just going to have to come back for the rest.

Yah, I know I could have put some of this stuff on eBay (some of it will end up there eventually) but you know, that’s a hassle I didn’t want to deal with right now. Maybe during the next sort and purge I’ll do that. That’s THIS weekend by the way… Woof!

Updated: 10/20/08

James came up again this past weekend to help me wrap up where we left off. My home office is now cleaned out, and awaiting the new furniture I ordered. I’ll be able to move my day to day Apple II gear back in within a few weeks.

Practically every little bit of Apple II gear I own has now been “seen” by me. I now have an improved awareness of what I have (too much), and of what I need to get rid of (a lot). I gave more gear to James (we didn’t fill the bus this time), while other bits and parts are going out to Tony Diaz and other people in the community I’ve made promises to. The rest will either be posted to eBay, or saved for KansasFest attendees.

October 16th, 2008

Site news (10-16-08)

After a great deal of consideration and advice from friends in the community (thanks everyone), I’ve decided not to add commercial advertising to the A2Central site. I’ve added a PayPal “Donate” link instead. The recent poll on the matter showed there is support (tolerance?) for advertising from the community but I just didn’t want my hobby turning into a business (even on such a minute level). Thank you for your support.

The Contact Us form has had link submission turned off. The amount of link spam coming in was getting way out of hand. If you need to submit a link, e-mail it to me at a2fan@hotmail.com or try the “www dot a2central dot com” method. Damn spammers!

October 16th, 2008

Get Lamp documentary update

Jason Scott, creator of BBS: The Documentary, recently updated his blog with news on his latest project, Get Lamp, a documentary of text adventures:

I have finished going through all 120 hours of footage for useful clips. This is the most dreary aspect of the way I do these documentaries. I listen to an interview and clip out any statements, poses, glances, or spoken ideas that I think might at all have to do with the final work … I just checked my clip drives: I have 2,439 clips.

So the hardest, most drudgery-filled portion of the editing process is done. Having all these clips at my disposal allows me to start piecing together sequences and overlaps and putting together all the things being said … I’m now working on putting the clips into folders … and that’s probably another week or so, and then sequences in very rough form start happening. Eventually I’ll have stuff I’m showing to friends for feedback, and probably a sneak preview or two, and then working even more on the final product …

So rejoice, ever-present inquisitive types… progress is being made.

A teaser trailer of this documentary is currently available, as is this longer trailer:




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