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26682Re: Tech weekend -- everyone's projects ...

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  • David
    Jul 3, 2012
      --- In midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com, "Evan Koblentz" <evan@...> wrote:
      > Could everyone who attended send a list message about their projects from this weekend? It would be nice for everyone else to hear about progress made and how it was done.

      I came by on Sunday morning not for the Tech weekend, but just for the opportunity to hear Lee Felsenstein. Although I hadn't intended to get into the "project" mode, I ended up being utterly fascinated by what was going on. Bill Dromgoole patiently explained to me what he was doing as he dug into his Cosmac, and I got to follow along more-or-less comprehending the limited but very impressive success he achieved. And I greatly enjoyed watching Mike Loewen achieve significant progress in bringing a card punch back to life. (Vacuum tubes I "get", chips can be a little intimidating but I'm easily frightened by mechanical things!) Mike and I also got to talk a bit about the zen of keeping these types of increasingly esoteric skills alive. Ian Primus made my day by providing a fresh boot disk for my Osborne 1, which to my great delight woke right up and ran after napping for perhaps the past 20 years. Several other members also provided various other random bits of kindness.

      This was the first time I've really spent any "quality time" at a MARCH gathering and I was greatly impressed. The the fact that everyone was just happy to be there doing this stuff was inspiring.

      I had no idea what to expect from Lee. As a legendary figure, he could have sat on his laurels and retold old stories, or even just stood up there and read from the phone book and I'd have been glad just to meet him. But it was way inspiring to hear him talk not so much about the old days when they were making computers out of rocks and duct tape, but of what he's doing now to help enable the next generation of legendary figures. Wow, now I really respect him!

      I may also be in the running for a "last to smoke" prize. As I was demonstrating the newly-revived Osborne back at home to my daughters, fielding questions like "So which version of Photoshop does it run? 1.0? Heh, heh, heh!" and "Where's the mouse?" daughter #1 suddenly yelled out "Dad, it's on Fire!" and with a fresh appreciation of how portable this computer is NOT, I hustled it out the back door. Oh well, it continued to run right up until I pulled the plug so hopefully a few caps will be the limit of the damage.

      Thanks to everyone. I had a great time.

      -- Dave Sica
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