June 28th, 2013

Juiced.GS Volume 18, Issue 2 now available

Juiced.GS Volume 18, Issue 2 (Jun 2013)Volume 18, Issue 2 (June 2013) of Juiced.GS, the longest-running Apple II publication in print, has been mailed to all subscribers. This issue features a behind-the-scenes look at the discovery and publication of 8-bit shooting game Zéphyr; an interview with the conference services staff at Rockhurst University, host of KansasFest; reviews of Option8’s RetroConnector keyboard interface device, and of Karateka Classic and Lode Runner Classic for iOS; a history of Apple II software publisher Electronic Arts; and much, much more!

This is Juiced.GS‘s second quarterly issue of 2013. Subscriptions are available at $19 for United States customers, $24 for readers in Canada and Mexico, and $27 for international customers, with several free sample issues available as PDFs.

June 20th, 2013

Woz attends historic testing of five Apple 1 computers

Today’s Woz-stalking is courtesy Dean Nichols and The San Jose Mercury News. Tuesday, June 18th saw Steve Wozniak and several other *very notable* attendees gathered at History San Jose to power-on and test no fewer than five Apple 1 computers. How many of us wish they could have been there to see that?

June 17th, 2013

OzKFest dates announced, July 26-28 Brisbane Australia

Andrew Roughan has announced the date and location of the (we think) second-largest gathering of Apple II users in the world.

The Australian retro computing gathering, OzKfest, will be happening in Brisbane, Australia, July 26-28. That’s just 6 weeks away. Steve Kazoullis and I would like you join us for a few of days of retro inspiration, Aussie ingenuity and camaraderie.

Some of the confirmed sessions include:

  • Live discussion of the events of KanasFest that will have taken place in the previous days
  • Matt Jenkins will take us on a ‘A trip down Memory lane’
  • There will be a demonstration of the Carte Blanche with HDMI adapter in an Apple IIe (courtesy of Stephen Howell)
  • I will be demonstrating The Complex, a turn based, multi player, RPG created by Sean Craig (who may be in attendance)
  • Skype link up with Woz
  • Skype link up with KansasFest attendees

I keenly anticipate some hardware hackery from Alex Lukacz and Jon Co and I’m sure Alex will be bringing his turtle robot controlled via Bluetooth. There may even be some Apple interfaces with the Raspberry Pi. We also have some presentations related to other classic computer platforms and current hobbyist innovations such as the Maximite.

The website has all the logistical details including a registration form. Session details will be updated shortly. http://ozkfest.net/

There will be a few attendees of past KansasFests and the previous OzKfest and we hope to imbibe the KansasFest spirit into OzKFest again this year.

Now is the time to get your registration form in, arrange how to get there and where you’ll stay. If you need help, let us know how we can help.

If you have an idea for a session that you’d like to present, please let us know so we can allocate a time slot for you. If you would like to learn something, let us know what that is and we will try to find a presenter for that topic, e.g. Stephen Wright would like an introduction to IIgs development and I’d like to find out how to change and manage disk images within ActiveGS.

Steve and I are really excited about this event and can’t wait to see you there! Reminder that the ‘Downunder Chat’ happens every Friday night from 9pm Australian EST in irc.a2central.zany.golf #a2.chat

June 11th, 2013

Apple II serial A2S1-0047 (1-243) sells for over $23K

A rare early production Apple II in a ventless case has sold on eBay for an unprecedented USD $23,099. Despite the Apple II having been upgraded, most of the unit was completely original and in working condition. A pair of early Disk II drives (serials unknown) were also included, as well as several peripherals from the same era.

Originally designed as a ventless, fanless computer, Apple quickly determined that the Apple II would overheat and malfunction in it’s original case. Rather than add a cooling fan (Steve Jobs hated fans), vents were quickly added to the case design, solving the overheating issue. The Apple II remained vented ever after (though users still often added a third-party cooling fan). It’s been speculated that only about a hundred of these ventless cases were ever manufactured. Apple eventually offered a trade-in program to owners of the early cases and most of them took advantage of the replacement offer, thus insuring the rarity of the Apple II ventless case.

Recently, Apple II machines with early revision motherboards have been increasing in value (if eBay sales are a reliable indicator). Some machines with low serial numbers have been selling for $3000-$5000 USD depending on their original, overall condition. It’s been an on-going topic of interest in the Apple II collecting community as enthusiasts ponder if this is a just a fad or a harbinger of the future value of their collections.

June 10th, 2013

RetroConnector //e and //c – adapt your Apple II keyboard to a modern device

Usually, retro-computing hobbyists attempt to hack and adapt new hardware to interface with older machines. The RetroConnector by Option8 does the opposite. It let’s you interface your Apple //c or //e keyboard with a modern device such as a PC or iPad.

Two models, both based on the PJRC Teensy (an Arduino clone), are available assembled for $35USD. Each is machine specific for the Apple //e or //c.

Going to KansasFest? You’ll have the option of picking up your order at the conference!

June 5th, 2013

Open Apple #28 (June 2013): Lon Seidman, BBSs, Steve Wozniak, and documentaries

Lon SeidmanThis month on Open Apple, the Apple II community’s only monthly podcast, Mike and Ken chat with Lon Seidman, sysop of the Matrix Returns BBS and co-host of Behind the Video. The dial-up bulletin board is making a comeback, thanks to Warp Six and the Raspberry Pi! It’s so easy, anyone can do it — unlike buying an Apple-1, the going rate for which has skyrocketed to $668,000 USD. But even that is a pittance compared to what Steve Wozniak’s former house is selling for. How long before he sells his current house and moves to Australia? Jordan Mechner’s Karateka reboot has paved the way for Karateka Classic on iOS, just the way we remember it. Charles Mangin also blends new and old with his USB interfaces for the Apple II — get yours next month at KansasFest! Finally, if you want a GET LAMP coin or any of Jason Scott’s documentaries shipped overseas, you’re outta luck — but he has four new films coming, with a colleague’s pinball film en route as well.

Find the show at the Open Apple Web site or in the iTunes and Zune podcast directories.