Well here we are again. I’t’s RetroChallenge time and my project will be a strategy game in the 1980s style in the likes of SSI or Avalon Hill. So why the picture of ol’ George Washington? He’s going to be the central character of the game, the Commander-in-Chief has to rebuild the Continental Army, garner support of the States and their Militias, battle internal strife of those that wish to see the the newly founded Union bought down with the assistance of foreign powers. The ink on the 1783 Paris Treaty is barely dry, can George Washington save the nation? Of course there’s a twist, I’m writing the game 😉 1786! Awaits.
September 8th, 2021No Comments, Apple2, Programming, RetroChallange, by Michael.
June 12th, 2018No Comments, Apple2, Archiving, Education, by Michael.
It’s not every day an Australian Educational software set appears on eBay just begging to be imaged. This is the “Basic Skills Software Resource Collection” by the Computer Education Centre (CEC). This is the main collection of 16 single-sided 5.25″ diskettes, and the bonus double-sided 17th diskette. CEC PDF Guide Diskette Images (DSK Format)
May 2nd, 2017No Comments, Apple2, Archiving, WOzFest, by Michael.
Saturday 29th April 2017 was WOzFest PR#6 where the theme was preservation, so I had the perfect candidate for the project in a recent acquisition of Sunburst’s “Learning To Cope With Pressure”, of course it comes with a 5.25″ floppy with protection, but they did generously include a second spare master diskette.
January 22nd, 20171 Comment, Apple2, AppleWin, Emulators, Programming, Random Thoughts, Virtual ][, by Michael.
Yes, you read that correctly – AppleWin for the Mac. Well, not quite. It is the same current release of AppleWin for Windows users, what I’ve done is use WineBottler to package up the download into a self contained app that uses Wine to provide the Windows API support. If you don’t want to compile Wine yourself, there are pre-compiled Wine installers on the WineBottler download page. So, why would I want to do this on my MacPro? That’s a very good question. Most of the time I use Virtual ][ to emulate an Apple][, but when rebuilding my development environment to the MacPro I could find my license key, and as I was doing clean installs of my software that became a bit of a problem, so I’ve emailed and asked if it would be possible to retrieve my license keys (fingers crossed that comes through), but back to this story.
Greetings Kfest fans, my good friend Mike has produced an audio travelogue about KansasFest 2016 called “Week of The KFest.” In the presentation Mike includes sound bites from many of the attendees of this year’s (2016) week-long KansasFest Apple II event. It was published to Floppy Days this week. If you’d like to hear it, here are three links you can choose from: Floppy Days Feed (mono): http://traffic.libsyn.com/…/65FloppyDays_2016_10_Week_of_th… 320kbps MP3 (stereo): http://www.jongleur.co.uk/kfest2016/WeekOfTheKFest320.mp3 M4A (stereo / uncompressed): http://www.jongleur.co.uk/kfest2016/WeekOfTheKFestM4a.m4a
September 21st, 2016No Comments, Apple2, Programming, RetroChallange, by Michael.
Way back in the day on of my favourite programming tools was Nibble BASIC from the Nibble Magazine. It allowed you to write Applesoft programs without line numbers, and added additional commands such as If/ElseIf/Else, and Loop/EndLoop, as well as Goto and Gosub labels rather than using line numbers. I added extra commands such as Repeat/Until and While/EndWhile, and “Turtle” like graphic commands. In a previous RetroChallenge I was going to re-write Nibble BASIC in itself, but my project this time is to write an external “compiler” to take an enhanced Applesoft like script and convert it to run on an Apple][. My target script is a version of the traditional “Hello World” program below: # RetroChallenge 2016/10 # Hello World Program my String$ = “Hello World” my Counter% = 10 my Count% = 1 my Co% = 2 my Characters_Per_Line = 40 home for i = 1 to Counter% Co% = centre_text(Characters_Per_line,String$) next Print “String$ [“;String$;”]” PRINT “Counter%>”;Counter% ? “Count% >”;Count% print “Co% >”;Co% sub centre_text my line_size = shift my text$ = shift my start_character = int(len(text$)/2)) htab start_character : print text$ return(start_character) So, in a nutshell, declared variables with full name support, not just up to the first two characters, called subroutines passing and returning values (no recursion support) , and case insensitive commands. If time permits, I’ll add additional Applesoft commands to the parser.
January 9th, 2014No Comments, Apple2, Programming, RetroChallange, by Michael.
Thought I’d get a jump on the rewriting of S-Basic in S-Basic by dumping the S-Basic Applesoft code to a text file, then reformatting it as S-Basic, then running it through S-Basic5.3 on my disk image. Great idea, but . . . . . The code is just too unstructured. Too many unexpected terminations within a routine using a GOTO that drops you part way into another routine. Arrrrrrrrgh! I love structure, indenting, flow control, so looks like I’ve got to do it myself then. So back to my original plan of writing from scratch using the Applesoft listing as a guide only.
January 3rd, 2014No Comments, Apple2, Programming, RetroChallange, by Michael.
OK, so it’s summer here in Australia, so what is this “Winter Warmup” thing. 2014WW is the Retrochallenge and to quote the site: “In a nutshell, the RetroChallenge is a loosely disorganised gathering of RetroComputing enthusiasts who collectively do stuff with old computers for a month. The event is very much open to interpretation… individuals set there own challenges, which can range from programming to multimedia work; hardware restoration to exploring legacy networking… or just plain dicking around. It really doesn’t matter what you do, just so long as you do it. While the RetroChallenge has its competitive side, it’s not really a contest… it’s more like global thermonuclear war — everyone can play, but nobody really wins.”
You never quite know what you will find when you go browsing on eBay. A couple of weeks ago I came across “The Apple II Monitor Peeled” and the old style presentation of it intrigued me, so I put a bid on it, and won it for pretty much the hand written price in the corner of the front cover. Its ye olde charm, and printed on 3-hole paper with a two staples binding, it was too much to resist and just had to add it to my bookshelf. A typewriter composed book written in 1979 (2nd printing) by William E. Dougherty, and perhaps his forward to the book would be the best description.
What do you do on New Years Day when you’ve got too many unfinished projects?