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1814OOPS! -- RE: [midatlanticretro] Report -- InfoAge work day...

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  • Evan
    Nov 12, 2005
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      I forgot to mention that Bob Grieb also was there all day.

      From: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com [mailto:midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Evan
      Sent: Saturday, November 12, 2005 8:27 PM
      To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [midatlanticretro] Report -- InfoAge work day...

      Hi all,

      We have some news that everyone will like ... and some news that'll make
      Treasurer Jim want to kill me.  :)

      Myself, Bill Degnan, Andy Mayer, John Allain, John Montenigro, Chris Keegan,
      and David Gesswein (all the way from the D.C. area!) participated today.
      InfoAge's Frank O'Brien spoke with us for a while about our mission, etc.,
      and Fred Carl was very helpful today just as always.  (Mark Dodel was
      supposed to bring us his OS/2 collection but was sick.)

      We began at 10-ish with doughnuts and a discussion of how to tackle
      InfoAge's Grabbe collection and our items.  The original plan was to start
      by cataloging everything, but we called an audible and decided to first
      reorganize where everything is physically stored.

      We previously talked about having our museum space at InfoAge's main
      building ("the hotel") but there is too much happening there (events,
      construction) and there is too little security.  So, per Fred's original
      idea, we scoped out a nice part of the second building (I forget what it's
      called -- I mean the building directly behind the hotel where the National
      Broadcasters Hall of Fame will also be located.)  We realized that a couple
      of the rooms where John M. already placed some items from his recent rescues
      are actually in an ideal location -- an otherwise unclaimed hallway which
      locks on both ends.  We vaguely had Fred's permission to make this claim,
      but he had to leave for a few hours.  The conclusion: "It's easier to do now
      and ask for forgiveness later than to get permission first."

      We began moving all the heavy computers (lots of DEC, teletypes, servers,
      etc.) from the NJBHOF room down the hall to a couple of the rooms in "our"
      new turf.  We spread out the items across a few of the rooms... each room we
      use for storage makes it one less room another group can claim, right?  Once
      completed, we stopped for a pizza lunch and then moved to the hotel
      basement, where Fred in the morning showed us a quasi-hidden room with
      strong shelves, decent lighting, and decent security.  We moved many of the
      basement items (mostly Grabbe collection stuff) into this adjacent room and
      organized it quite nicely.  Many of the items from John M.'s recent rescue
      are not of interest for our museum, but are things we can use to sell /
      barter / share with other groups, so we put those all in one group of
      shelves.  Thus we now actually have some (gasp!) organization to our
      collection.  Other parts of the collection were too big / heavy to move into
      the adjacent room or to the upstairs hallway in the next building, but we
      still made progress with those items by getting most of them off the floor
      and wrapped in plastic.  Perhaps most important, in both areas where our
      collection now sits, we made clear distinctions between what belongs to
      InfoAge and what belongs to MARCH.

      Fred returned and we explained our claim for the second building's hallway
      rooms.  He asked us to scale back that plan just a tad. :)  However, we
      reached a compromise -- we'll start with just the rooms on one side of the
      hallway, and Fred will change the locks on those rooms' doors, keeping one
      key and giving the other to us exclusively.  Those rooms are pretty good for
      serving as a computer museum.  Many of them have pass-through doors between
      the rooms, and Fred said it's fine if we want to install pass-throughs in
      the rooms which lack them.  We envision giving each room a theme -- the
      minicomputer room, the microcomputer room, the gaming room, and so on.

      Finally, we had an impromptu meeting with Fred about InfoAge's mission / our
      mission, fundraising opportunities, etc. ... I'll follow-up on these topics
      in other messages in the near future.  One highlight: the vast InfoAge
      collection is only LESS THAN HALF of Mr. Grabbe's full collection.  The
      other half is yet to be transported from Grabbe's home in the Harrisburg, PA
      area to InfoAge.  Fred is working on setting this up.  When the time comes,
      he'll need three assistants -- "two to move the collection and one to keep
      Mr. Grabbe occupied" -- Fred's words, not mine.

      No real cataloging was done today (although there was some photography).
      When you have a big intimidating mess of stuff to clean up, like a child's
      pile of toys, the first problem is figuring out where to start.  Today, we
      accomplished that and more -- we not only started but we now have a much
      clearer understanding of what's "our" space at InfoAge.

      Fred also told us that April 1 will be the ceremony for officially turning
      over the buildings from the town to InfoAge.  As with the WWII dedication
      day a few months ago, he'd like us to have a (small) exhibit presence. A few
      weeks later (April 22-23) is the Trenton show. Unlike this year's Trenton
      show, we only should have a MARCH booth, not a whole room / exhibit again.
      The reason is because we don't want the public to say "Well I just saw your
      old computers in Trenton, why should I come to VCF East a few weeks later?"
      Joe Public doesn't know what VCF is, so we absolutely can't afford to
      cannibalize our event by doing too much at Trenton next year.  Instead, at
      Trenton we'll just man a booth and sign up people for our list and
      distribute flyers and stuff.

      One month from tomorrow is T-minus six months to VCF East.  If you're
      reading this and did not yet start thinking about fundraising ideas and your
      exhibit plans, please do so now!!  Six months will transpire FAST if we're
      not careful planners.

      Thanks to everyone who showed up to help today.  Let's do it again in a
      couple of months, but hopefully not when it snows.

      - Evan

      Evan Koblentz's personal homepage: http://www.snarc.net

      Computer Collector Newsletter:

      Mid-Atlantic Retro Computing Hobbyists & Museum:

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