Today is the first official day of KFest. For those who made the effort, the day began with breakfast at the Rockhurst cafeteria… but many of us stayed up late the previous night and opted to sleep-in since no sessions were scheduled for Wednesday morning.
Most of the fun that goes on at KFest is in the impromptu socializing. People wander from one dorm room to another and it’s pretty easy to catch a demonstration of new hardware or software occuring, find people brain-storming on a problem together, or sharing humorous annecdotes. If you need help with something, someone is usually close by ready to help. It’s a great community.
Today, I got to see James Littlejohn’s “Littlepower” replacement power supply in action. It’s a bridge board that plugs directly into the GS power connector, so that the computer itself can be powered from an external AC adapter. It’s universal, heavy duty (the unit I saw was 200 watts) and very small plus by getting rid of the internal PS, your GS will run cooler. The Littlepower (and other products James is working on) will be available in the future through Reactive. Pricing hasn’t been announced yet.
Kirk Mitchell and Ryan Suenaga treated us to one of our newer traditions, the KFest Kookout. Burgers and hot dogs were on the menu, as well as vegan-friendly “veggie” burgers. Thanks guys!
After lunch, Ken Gagne kicked off KFest 2007 by introducing our keynote speaker, David Szetela. Mr. Szetela gave us an entertaining look back to his time as an editor for Nibble Magazine, and stories from his stint working at Apple.
Next up, it was time to whip out the soldering irons, as Ed Eastman led a hands-on soldering lab demonstrating basic soldering techniques. Soldering is something a lot of us probably take for granted, but to solder well, is a bit of an art and requires practice.
Later in the evening, Ken Gagne hosted a showing of BBS: The Documentary — a historical retrospective from when dial-up computer bulletin board systems were popular during the 80’s and early 90’s.
Some of us spent the evening testing out a video converter that Jamie “Macdog” Steffens brought. Finding an acceptable method to display GS graphics on modern VGA LCD panels has been a frustrating project for quite awhile, but the unit we tested tonight might be the solution to the problem. More info will be posted as testing continues, and there will probably be a group purchase administered through Reactive in the future.
And after that, it was back to visiting and working on projects. So far, everyone seems to be having a great time. Wish you were here with us.