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Re: Quest Copyright

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  • thinkpast
    ... I see a lot of value and relevance on discussing the Quest situation here. I ve had pretty good experiences, when contacting original owners of software or
    Message 1 of 13 , May 13, 2013
      --- In cosmacelf@yahoogroups.com, Andrew Wasson <awasson@...> wrote:
      >
      > Actually Steve, considering the amount of discussion, noise and rhetoric that's been generated about Quest copyright issues, I've always thought that you pretty much always offered a very level approach on and offline regarding that subject.
      >
      > I for one really appreciate that you went the extra mile and figured out what the truth of the matter was. Otherwise many of us would have Quest materials that we'd love to share but couldn't.
      >
      > Thanks for that.
      >
      > Andrew

      I see a lot of value and relevance on discussing the Quest situation here. I've had pretty good experiences, when contacting original owners of software or hardware even from decades ago. Describing the results of contact, points out the value of working with original copyright owners (almost always the developers), because it at the least pleases them that their work is still of interest. In my experience, contact leads to additional information and material - that's good for preservation and use. It also reinforces the idea that their work had, and has, a value. That encourages others who develop works TODAY. And discovery of actual history of development is also good to document.

      It's my position that learning about how things were done in the PAST, informs us about how things might be done today and tomorrow, in comparable circumstances.

      Herb Johnson
      retrotechnology.com
    • Steve Gemeny
      Herb, Andrew & all, I agree, and thank you. As a follow-on regarding Quest Material, and of the discussion earlier this year (Cassette Tapes subject), I have
      Message 2 of 13 , May 13, 2013
        Herb, Andrew & all,

        I agree, and thank you.

        As a follow-on regarding Quest Material, and of the discussion earlier this
        year (Cassette Tapes subject), I have generated a copy of Quest SuperBasic
        .wav file from the original binaries recovered years ago using Richard's
        ElfTools. I have prepended a reading of the Creative Commons release into
        the Wave File. (Yes, you'll get to attach a voice to the name...)

        This tape is, as one would expect in Quest format (that is to say I suspect
        it will not load into an Elf II, which is probably fine since I'll bet some
        of the memory allocation addresses need to be different).

        Because the original wave files were removed several years ago to save
        storage space, I'll place it at the following URL with the hopes that ,
        AFTER it is verified to be functional (and preferably not before) it will be
        mirrored and redistributed widely in accordance with Roger Pitkin's wishes:
        HTTP://gemeny.com/ELF_Stuff/Superbasic_CCReleased.wav

        Unless management wants to repost it into the appropriate folder, but that's
        their call.

        Be well,

        Steve

        -----Original Message-----
        From: cosmacelf@yahoogroups.com [mailto:cosmacelf@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
        Of thinkpast
        Sent: Monday, May 13, 2013 5:11 PM
        To: cosmacelf@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [cosmacelf] Re: Quest Copyright



        --- In cosmacelf@yahoogroups.com, Andrew Wasson <awasson@...> wrote:
        >
        > Actually Steve, considering the amount of discussion, noise and rhetoric
        that's been generated about Quest copyright issues, I've always thought that
        you pretty much always offered a very level approach on and offline
        regarding that subject.
        >
        > I for one really appreciate that you went the extra mile and figured out
        what the truth of the matter was. Otherwise many of us would have Quest
        materials that we'd love to share but couldn't.
        >
        > Thanks for that.
        >
        > Andrew

        I see a lot of value and relevance on discussing the Quest situation here.
        I've had pretty good experiences, when contacting original owners of
        software or hardware even from decades ago. Describing the results of
        contact, points out the value of working with original copyright owners
        (almost always the developers), because it at the least pleases them that
        their work is still of interest. In my experience, contact leads to
        additional information and material - that's good for preservation and use.
        It also reinforces the idea that their work had, and has, a value. That
        encourages others who develop works TODAY. And discovery of actual history
        of development is also good to document.

        It's my position that learning about how things were done in the PAST,
        informs us about how things might be done today and tomorrow, in comparable
        circumstances.

        Herb Johnson
        retrotechnology.com







        ------------------------------------

        ========================================================
        Questions? Check the FAQ at http://www.cosmacelf.com/forumfaq.html
        Visit the COSMAC ELF website at http://www.cosmacelf.comYahoo! Groups Links
      • jdrose_8_bit
        Very interesting. First time I have ever heard a program that was saved to a cassette. Kinda, sorta reminds me of the sound that a modem makes when it connects
        Message 3 of 13 , May 13, 2013
          Very interesting. First time I have ever heard a program that was saved to a cassette. Kinda, sorta reminds me of the sound that a modem makes when it connects to a BBS on a phone line.

          Thanks for doing that. You are preserving computer history.



          --- In cosmacelf@yahoogroups.com, "Steve Gemeny" <steve@...> wrote:
          >
          >
          >
          > As a follow-on regarding Quest Material, and of the discussion earlier this
          > year (Cassette Tapes subject), I have generated a copy of Quest SuperBasic
          > .wav file from the original binaries recovered years ago using Richard's
          > ElfTools.
          >
        • Lee Hart
          ... I agree with Herb. If he hadn t contacted me about my early work (8TH, Tiny BASIC, BASYS boards etc.), we wouldn t have had the manuals online. I had
          Message 4 of 13 , May 13, 2013
            On 5/13/2013 4:10 PM, thinkpast wrote:
            > I see a lot of value and relevance on discussing the Quest situation
            > here. I've had pretty good experiences, when contacting original
            > owners of software or hardware even from decades ago. Describing the
            > results of contact, points out the value of working with original
            > copyright owners (almost always the developers), because it at the
            > least pleases them that their work is still of interest. In my
            > experience, contact leads to additional information and material -
            > that's good for preservation and use. It also reinforces the idea
            > that their work had, and has, a value. That encourages others who
            > develop works TODAY. And discovery of actual history of development
            > is also good to document.
            >
            > It's my position that learning about how things were done in the
            > PAST, informs us about how things might be done today and tomorrow,
            > in comparable circumstances.

            I agree with Herb. If he hadn't contacted me about my early work (8TH,
            Tiny BASIC, BASYS boards etc.), we wouldn't have had the manuals online.
            I had simply assumed no one cared, so it wasn't worth my time to put
            them online. But Herb contacted me, and did all the "heavy lifting" to
            get them scanned and put on his web site. All at no charge!

            --
            An engineer can do for a nickel what any damn fool can do for a dollar.
            -- Henry Ford
            --
            Lee A. Hart, http://www.sunrise-ev.com/LeesEVs.htm
          • Steve Gemeny
            So all this activity related to Quest reminded me of one of the discussions I had with Roger... that of him telling some of the story of those days. He seemed
            Message 5 of 13 , May 14, 2013
              So all this activity related to Quest reminded me of one of the discussions I had with Roger... that of him telling some of the story of those days.

              He seemed willing but unmotivated at that time. I had this crazy idea - how cool would it be if the original editor of QuestData was willing to interview Roger Pitkin, his former boss and founder of Quest...

              Bill Haslacher has responded favorably, but wonders "what questions would be asked and who would be the audience?"

              So I'll put it to the group.

              If there seems to be enough interest from within the group (or in a wider community) and a sufficient number of candidate questions, I'll email roger to broker the deal.

              Lets start by collecting some questions for the founder of an electronic company in Silicon Valley in the days when Bill and Woz were just playing with Blue Boxes. A company that may have had a hand in setting a lot of folks like us on the paths we've been so lucky to have found...

              Steve

              Sent by my large thumbs via tiny soft
            • joshbensadon
              Wow, what *isn t* there to ask? I always like to know the mood of the market from their point of view. Did they go into this just because computers were
              Message 6 of 13 , May 15, 2013
                Wow, what *isn't* there to ask?

                I always like to know the mood of the market from their point of view. Did they go into this just because computers were "cool" or "neat"? Or did they have a specific market in mind? They advertised a lot in Popular Electronics, where else did they advertise? (who did they want to attract to their products?).

                What other products did they talk about but didn't pursue?

                I'm searching elsewhere on the internet, trying to learn the whole story of when they started, when things closed up, what were the relevant dates? etc. I can't find any good history on them, so my questions are just basic and non-specific.

                I'm going look more on the internet to learn more about them.

                :)J



                --- In cosmacelf@yahoogroups.com, Steve Gemeny <steve@...> wrote:
                >
                > So all this activity related to Quest reminded me of one of the discussions I had with Roger... that of him telling some of the story of those days.
                >
                > He seemed willing but unmotivated at that time. I had this crazy idea - how cool would it be if the original editor of QuestData was willing to interview Roger Pitkin, his former boss and founder of Quest...
                >
                > Bill Haslacher has responded favorably, but wonders "what questions would be asked and who would be the audience?"
                >
                > So I'll put it to the group.
                >
                > If there seems to be enough interest from within the group (or in a wider community) and a sufficient number of candidate questions, I'll email roger to broker the deal.
                >
                > Lets start by collecting some questions for the founder of an electronic company in Silicon Valley in the days when Bill and Woz were just playing with Blue Boxes. A company that may have had a hand in setting a lot of folks like us on the paths we've been so lucky to have found...
                >
                > Steve
                >
                > Sent by my large thumbs via tiny soft
                >
              • Mark Graybill
                Personally, I m very interested in an interview as you describe. The problem is that I m not coming up with much in the way of specific questions because
                Message 7 of 13 , May 16, 2013
                  Personally, I'm very interested in an interview as you describe. The problem is that I'm not coming up with much in the way of specific questions because there's a lot of basic stuff I don't know.

                  I became aware of the Netronics Elf II about the time it was available. I got one of those in the summer of 1977. However, I didn't find out about the Super Elf until much later, from the viewpoint of the computers I owned. By the time I found out about the Super Elf, I'd already moved heavily into Z-80s (several homebrews and an S-100 system) and a friend had just talked me into buying my first 6502-based system (a Vic-20) and I'd started building cards for it.

                  So I'm not aware of what was available when, and that would color a lot of my questions. Basically I wonder what hard-earned experience and 20/20 hindsight has added to his views on what he did with his business at the time, whether there's anything he'd do different. Different audience, better marketing, a change of CPU, refocusing the platform from being a build-it-up desktop computer to something like a small, low power portable system that gives more of the desktop computer experience than the 65C02 or CMOS Z-80 systems did (which also remained fairly marginal market-wise, aside from the TRS and RS portables.)

                  Also, I'm interested in hearing his reflections on the high points of the experience. What were the exciting moments, when everything looked really great, while running the business? Things like getting the core system out the door, or adding a really neat new peripheral, or reaching a new audience and watching the orders come, or seeing a customer use the system in a really neat application.

                  Is there a basic history of Quest that I can look up somewhere?

                  Also, we were talking about a Netronics Elf III here a while ago. I see we've got so-so scans of the PCB artwork for the Quest Super Elf boards. Maybe we can touch up (or redraw) _these_ into some Gerber files and make up some boards? Since we're just looking to communally come up with new boards for ourselves, non-commercially, I presume that would be OK? And maybe we can release the files as Open Hardware?

                  I don't suppose the original artwork is still kicking around anywhere. ;)

                  Mark Graybill
                  ---------------------------------------------------------------
                  Electronics, Books, Video Games, etc.

                  On May 14, 2013, at 5:31 PM, Steve Gemeny wrote:

                   

                  So all this activity related to Quest reminded me of one of the discussions I had with Roger... that of him telling some of the story of those days.

                  He seemed willing but unmotivated at that time. I had this crazy idea - how cool would it be if the original editor of QuestData was willing to interview Roger Pitkin, his former boss and founder of Quest...

                  Bill Haslacher has responded favorably, but wonders "what questions would be asked and who would be the audience?"

                  So I'll put it to the group.

                  If there seems to be enough interest from within the group (or in a wider community) and a sufficient number of candidate questions, I'll email roger to broker the deal.

                  Lets start by collecting some questions for the founder of an electronic company in Silicon Valley in the days when Bill and Woz were just playing with Blue Boxes. A company that may have had a hand in setting a lot of folks like us on the paths we've been so lucky to have found...

                  Steve

                  Sent by my large thumbs via tiny soft


                • Andrew Wasson
                  I too am interested in the interview. My questions are more of a business nature. I m interested in knowing about how they became Quest. How many people were
                  Message 8 of 13 , May 16, 2013
                    I too am interested in the interview. 

                    My questions are more of a business nature. 

                    • I'm interested in knowing about how they became Quest.
                    • How many people were involved. 
                    • Who were the pioneers/visionaries and what became of them. 
                    • What were their goals in entering the computer field. I'm sure it looked promising at that time but I imagine it was also full of uncertainty. 
                    • I wonder why they chose the 1802 rather than one of the other chips that were available. 
                    • Did they have a strategic plan, was their market always intended to be experimenters, hobbyists, education or were they looking to do something for consumers and industry?

                    That's the sort of stuff I'm interested in.

                    Andrew     




                    On 2013-05-16, at 2:41 PM, Mark Graybill <saundby@...> wrote:

                     

                    Personally, I'm very interested in an interview as you describe. The problem is that I'm not coming up with much in the way of specific questions because there's a lot of basic stuff I don't know.


                    I became aware of the Netronics Elf II about the time it was available. I got one of those in the summer of 1977. However, I didn't find out about the Super Elf until much later, from the viewpoint of the computers I owned. By the time I found out about the Super Elf, I'd already moved heavily into Z-80s (several homebrews and an S-100 system) and a friend had just talked me into buying my first 6502-based system (a Vic-20) and I'd started building cards for it.

                    So I'm not aware of what was available when, and that would color a lot of my questions. Basically I wonder what hard-earned experience and 20/20 hindsight has added to his views on what he did with his business at the time, whether there's anything he'd do different. Different audience, better marketing, a change of CPU, refocusing the platform from being a build-it-up desktop computer to something like a small, low power portable system that gives more of the desktop computer experience than the 65C02 or CMOS Z-80 systems did (which also remained fairly marginal market-wise, aside from the TRS and RS portables.)

                    Also, I'm interested in hearing his reflections on the high points of the experience. What were the exciting moments, when everything looked really great, while running the business? Things like getting the core system out the door, or adding a really neat new peripheral, or reaching a new audience and watching the orders come, or seeing a customer use the system in a really neat application.

                    Is there a basic history of Quest that I can look up somewhere?

                    Also, we were talking about a Netronics Elf III here a while ago. I see we've got so-so scans of the PCB artwork for the Quest Super Elf boards. Maybe we can touch up (or redraw) _these_ into some Gerber files and make up some boards? Since we're just looking to communally come up with new boards for ourselves, non-commercially, I presume that would be OK? And maybe we can release the files as Open Hardware?

                    I don't suppose the original artwork is still kicking around anywhere. ;)

                    Mark Graybill---------------------------------------------------------------
                    Electronics, Books, Video Games, etc.

                    On May 14, 2013, at 5:31 PM, Steve Gemeny wrote:

                     

                    So all this activity related to Quest reminded me of one of the discussions I had with Roger... that of him telling some of the story of those days.

                    He seemed willing but unmotivated at that time. I had this crazy idea - how cool would it be if the original editor of QuestData was willing to interview Roger Pitkin, his former boss and founder of Quest...

                    Bill Haslacher has responded favorably, but wonders "what questions would be asked and who would be the audience?"

                    So I'll put it to the group.

                    If there seems to be enough interest from within the group (or in a wider community) and a sufficient number of candidate questions, I'll email roger to broker the deal.

                    Lets start by collecting some questions for the founder of an electronic company in Silicon Valley in the days when Bill and Woz were just playing with Blue Boxes. A company that may have had a hand in setting a lot of folks like us on the paths we've been so lucky to have found...

                    Steve

                    Sent by my large thumbs via tiny soft




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