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It's an excellent museum and has a lot of different models/equipment. I've been there a few times, as I take friends and family when they visit me. If you're in Prague, don't forget to wave "hi" to me and MacStrategy and maybe come buy me a beer (the real Budweiser Budvar, not that American fake stuff ;-)

This is their web site if you're visiting: Apple Museum.

My roaming info for visiting Prague/Czech Republic can be found here:
Graham's post reminded me of our visit to Prague last summer. Another "museum" one should visit is the small Alfons Mucha Foundation gallery. For those not familiar with Mucha's name, you actually know his design sense (look at posters for San Francisco's Fillmore Auditorium in the 60's). Mucha designed the paper currency for Czechoslovakia after WWI. His brilliance as a designer was unsurpassed in his day and I, for one, was brought to tears by the beauty of his work. Look around Prague and see examples of his design ethic in the architecture of a number of buildings. I believe he's not talked about as much these days because his name and work suck all the oxygen out of the room leaving little for modern (living) Czech/Slovak artists.

If Mucha were alive today, I would love to imagine him working for Apple. Guess I'll have to be satisfied with one of these.

I will buy Graham a beer the next time we get to Prague. :D
 


FWIW, I logged off and discovered there was a new public beta available. I'll give Time Machine another try when I get a roundtuit.
FWIW, when I worked at ICL (in Kidsgrove, England) many moons ago, management really did give everyone a real, physical round tuit and demanded that we now deliver stuff on time.... (I lost my tuit :-( )
 


You did not mention the Royal typewriter in high school typing class. Did you miss that experience?
Nope. They offered no typing class, because my (public) college preparatory high school didn't believe college-educated men (it was an all-boys school) would ever need to type for a living. Major changes in sexual equality and IT aside, having had one would have helped in typing college term papers. At least erasable typing paper was available by then.
 


Graham's post reminded me of our visit to Prague last summer. Another "museum" one should visit is the small Alfons Mucha Foundation gallery. For those not familiar with Mucha's name, you actually know his design sense (look at posters for San Francisco's Fillmore Auditorium in the 60's). Mucha designed the paper currency for Czechoslovakia after WWI. His brilliance as a designer was unsurpassed in his day and I, for one, was brought to tears by the beauty of his work. Look around Prague and see examples of his design ethic in the architecture of a number of buildings. I believe he's not talked about as much these days because his name and work suck all the oxygen out of the room leaving little for modern (living) Czech/Slovak artists.

If Mucha were alive today, I would love to imagine him working for Apple. Guess I'll have to be satisfied with one of these.

I will buy Graham a beer the next time we get to Prague. :D
I'd be happy to do the same, Graham. My wife and I would love to return, since there were many sights we missed this time around. Among them was the alchemy museum, which apparently includes labs from the 16th century. I love quirky places like that.
 


I'd be happy to do the same, Graham. My wife and I would love to return, since there were many sights we missed this time around. Among them was the alchemy museum, which apparently includes labs from the 16th century. I love quirky places like that.
Thanks, Franklin. There are many quirky places to visit in Prague and the Czech Republic as a whole, but, without going too far off topic ;-) there is one other place people on this forum might like to visit. It is situated in a small town, Červený Újezd, just outside Prague.

Arcadehry has more than 170 lovingly restored, classic arcade games in one place. There's a single fee for entry with unlimited plays - no quarters or 10ps required. It's totally awesome! I first visited there in 2017 and have blogged about the trip (includes details of how to get there).

And for those reminiscing about old systems, why not read all about the underground computer games that existed in communist run Czechoslovakia in the 1980s in Gaming the Iron Curtain: How Teenagers and Amateurs in Communist Czechoslovakia Claimed the Medium of Computer Games (book purchases help MacInTouch). There's an English interview with the author here.
 





I really do miss VMS.
The NOAA/Environmental Research Laboratories in the '80s and early '90s had a vast number of VAXen running VMS. One of the most important developments was a real-time weather forecasting workstation. This had real-time feeds of radar, satellite, surface, upper-air, and model forecast data. The forecaster had access to an amazing set of tools and a very useable interface. This workstation was the prototype of what is now used (AWIPS II) in every National Weather Service office.


It was so amazing to have access to this information. It was like being in the future!
 


I really do miss VMS.
Of possible interest is a blog post from the OpenVMS community indicating that work is in progress to port it to the x86_64 platform. It seems to be taking a long time (probably not surprising, given the size of VMS), but the latest roadmap (from January) indicates that they plan for an "early adopters" release (version 9.1) by the end of this year and a production release (version 9.2) next year.

The latest "state of the port" report indicates that (as of May 2019), they have successfully issued a directory command, producing correct output.
VMS Software said:
So that end-of-2019 roadmap release might be a bit ambitious, but this is still worth paying attention to.
 




Anyone remember Westcode Software's OneClick? I'd liked it better than any other macro utility I've used since (though I haven't tried Keyboard Maestro). With it, I'd tricked out many Mac applications to work how I thought they should have.

It never made the transition to OS X.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
I was stunned and very, very sad to learn yesterday about the death of Adam Rosen, creator of The Vintage Mac Museum and a supporter and active member of the MacInTouch community since at least 1998. I had a nice email exchange with him in April this year and had no idea that he had pancreatic cancer, which is what also killed Steve Jobs and Jef Raskin.

Rest in peace, Adam. We'll miss you. Damn. :-(
 


Adam was a great consultant for a school where I merely volunteer. He kept those systems happy, and we collaborated a lot. I’d upgrade local network infrastructure, and he’d make sure it all integrated well.

Similarly, he helped set up the local Mac server, etc. If something was outside his wheelhouse, he’d pipe up and find a suitable resource. Whenever there was a emergency, the school could rely on him showing up in no time to fix it. In that sense, he reminded me of an old-school country doctor making house calls with grateful patients.

Illustrating his desire to serve his clients well, Adam advised the school to seek a new consultant a few years ago. Adam knew the stats re pancreatic cancer, and he wanted his clients in good hands before he went. Even though the school was no longer a official client, Adam remained available to serve as a sounding board via email.

I will miss him and hope that the Museum will live on.
 


Speaking of which, if you are a Mac-centric consultant in the Boston area and have an interest in taking over for Adam, please contact me.

There are about 10 Mac seats and 1 Windows PC at the school and so the needs are pretty modest - however, if there is a emergency.... they'd like to see you in a hurry. The school is located mid-Cambridge, near Harvard Square, and has on-site parking.
 




Anyone remember Westcode Software's OneClick? I'd liked it better than any other macro utility I've used since (though I haven't tried Keyboard Maestro). With it, I'd tricked out many Mac applications to work how I thought they should have.

It never made the transition to OS X.
Yes, it was awesome.

When the transition to OSX came I hosted a site called "theXclickers.com" for people who wanted to try and keep the community alive and offer alternatives. Ran it for about 18 months until interest just faded away with the software.

It's about the only thing I truly miss from the Mac OS 9 days.
 



Anyone remember Westcode Software's OneClick?
How did I live through the entire classic Mac OS era and completely miss OneClick? I would have loved to use it!

The closest I came in those days was Square One from Binary Software. Anyone remember that? It was good, but I have a feeling it doesn't truly compare.

Thanks for offering a memory that I wish I could have shared!
 


Yes, it was awesome.
When the transition to OSX came I hosted a site called "theXclickers.com" for people who wanted to try and keep the community alive and offer alternatives. Ran it for about 18 months until interest just faded away with the software.
It's about the only thing I truly miss from the Mac OS 9 days.
Anyone remember Westcode Software's OneClick? I'd liked it better than any other macro utility I've used since (though I haven't tried Keyboard Maestro). With it, I'd tricked out many Mac applications to work how I thought they should have.
It never made the transition to OS X.
Oh my yes! Oneclick was very cool. It always seemed a bit buggy, but they were always working on it, and it was just a lot of fun to use.

Finderpop was another I liked, and it did make the transition to OS X, although I don't know if works with Mojave/Catalina.

And another fav, which was kind of the opposite of any sort of productivity, but so much fun: Lunatic Fringe!
 


1986: The folks at Jasmine demo a zero-footprint external hard drive (SCSI-1) for my Mac Plus. I got a $100-off deal and ordered one for $1500. How big? 80 MB, 5.25". My boss thought we'd never fill it.

By the way, the first app I bought after I got the Jasmine was DiskFit from Dantz Development*. I backed up the Jasmine to 3.5" floppies and actually had to restore from those floppies when the Jasmine had a brain-fart sometime in 1987.

I left the Jasmine with a client in 1991 who was using it to boot her Mac LC when the Mac's internal hard drive went south. It might still be running for all I know. When the heads moved, it sounded like the spring on a cabin screen door.

[*See also: Retrospect history. –MacInTouch]
 


My first hard drive (in a MS-DOS PC) was a Seagate 296N – 5.25", 3600 RPM, 28ms seek time, 80MB, SCSI. If I remember correctly, it cost about $350. I used it for many years. When it started getting flaky, running the drive's low-level format routine (built-in to the controller card) restored it.

I still have it, and (as far as I know) it still works. I'm keeping it around just in case I manage to someday get a SCSI card for my Apple IIGS, in which case it will become that computer's boot drive.
 


My first hard drive was a Priam 14" 30 Megabyte - case was 30" deep, 20" wide, 12" tall. It used a proprietary parallel interface to the S100 Buss card in my IMSAI computer. The computer - I built - was a Z80 (8 Mhz), with 64 Kilobytes of RAM. The drive cost me a whopping $4500. In order to move it, you needed to use a screwdriver to mechanically move the head off the platter. It was a monster, but worked well at the time.
 


1986: The folks at Jasmine demo a zero-footprint external hard drive (SCSI-1) for my Mac Plus. I got a $100-off deal and ordered one for $1500. How big? 80 MB, 5.25". My boss thought we'd never fill it....
I visited Atari (working for Inmos at the time). I had the ST, a 68000-based machine with a B&W monior and a meg of RAM. They showed us their 20MB hard disk - 5.25 inches. I asked if I could buy one, and a while later they shipped me a version in a bent metal box, using a cut-down version of SCSI as an interface. Man, that thing was BIG and fast.....

(Why an Atari ST? Flat address space, and vastly vastly cheaper than a Mac...)
 


My first hard drive was a Priam 14" 30 Megabyte - case was 30" deep, 20" wide, 12" tall. It used a proprietary parallel interface to the S100 Buss card in my IMSAI computer. The computer - I built - was a Z80 (8 Mhz), with 64 Kilobytes of RAM. The drive cost me a whopping $4500. In order to move it, you needed to use a screwdriver to mechanically move the head off the platter. It was a monster, but worked well at the time.
I recall the first hard disk we got at work from DEC for our VAX computer. It was about the height of a two-drawer file cabinet, with several 18"-24" disks. We discovered that the heads had crashed in transport to us. After reading this I'm wondering if someone forgot to move them before shipment....
 


I visited Atari (working for Inmos at the time). I had the ST, a 68000-based machine with a B&W monior and a meg of RAM. They showed us their 20MB hard disk - 5.25 inches. I asked if I could buy one, and a while later they shipped me a version in a bent metal box, using a cut-down version of SCSI as an interface. Man, that thing was BIG and fast.....

(Why an Atari ST? Flat address space, and vastly vastly cheaper than a Mac...)
$499 for the 520ST. Absolutely had a blast with that machine. I also bought the color monitor. A friend later gave me his 1040ST, a full megabyte! Never had a hard drive - way too much money. I think a 20MB was like $5000 or something. An emulator called Hatari does a credible job of recreating the experience.
 


I visited Atari (working for Inmos at the time). I had the ST, a 68000-based machine with a B&W monior and a meg of RAM. They showed us their 20MB hard disk - 5.25 inches. I asked if I could buy one, and a while later they shipped me a version in a bent metal box, using a cut-down version of SCSI as an interface.
Sounds like an SH204 hard drive.

Never had a hard drive with my Atari 8-bits but I did have several once I upgraded to the 520ST in '87. Built my own using a variety of full-height 5.25" MFM hard drives, Adaptec 4000 MFM->SCSI adapters, and an ICD SCSI->ACSI HD interface. At one point I had a whopping 20MB system comprised of four 5MB 5.25" full height hard drives connected to two Adaptec 4000 adapters, which in turn were connected to the ST through the ICD interface. When I replaced this whole system with a single Maxtor 120MB 3.5" SCSI hard drive, I thought it was the greatest thing ever.

It's too bad Atari never put enough money behind the ST in the US to make it a real contender in the computer market. Those of us who had one knew it was a drastically better machine than any PC or Mac of that era.
 


Since the conversation has expanded to include DEC VAXen, allow me to describe the first hard disk that I can remember using (1967). It was housed in an enclosure approximately 5' high x 5' deep x 18" thick, and held a whole 5 Mword of 18 bits/word on our DEC PDP-9T (a variant of the PDP-9 designed to allow real-time control of several simultaneous experiments that required millisecond-scale response to events in the experiments. So far as I know, DEC sold only two, one to us and one to Harvard Psychology Dept.). It didn't take long (1 or 2 years) for this to be replaced by a smaller enclosure that accepted replaceable multi-platter disk packs that held 10 Mwords).
 


The first hard drive I had was a 20-megabyte (yes, megabyte) "Macbottom" [eBay], which was a zero-footprint drive that was the same cross-section as a classic Macintosh. When I got the Macbottom 20 (having skipped the 10-megabyte version), I felt I had achieved the "VAX on a desktop" objective. I think I eventually paired this with a Mac SE/30, which also had the 68881 hardware floating point chip, and I was in heaven!

At the time, I really wondered what I would do with 20 megabytes of space!
 


The first hard drive I had was a 20-megabyte (yes, megabyte) "Macbottom" [eBay], which was a zero-footprint drive that was the same cross-section as a classic Macintosh.
The original MacBottom hard drive was a 10MB unit using a MiniScribe mechanism which connected to the serial port of the original Macintosh 128K computer. I was lucky enough to meet and get to know many of the early employees at PCPC.
 


I recall the first hard disk we got at work from DEC for our VAX computer. It was about the height of a two-drawer file cabinet, with several 18"-24" disks. We discovered that the heads had crashed in transport to us. After reading this I'm wondering if someone forgot to move them before shipment....
Indeed - the old VAX drives (RA series) did need to have the heads parked properly prior to shipping or they'd be damaged. I recall a new shipment from DEC that had to be specifically unpacked (from palettes) and installed by a DEC engineer.
 


Indeed - the old VAX drives (RA series) did need to have the heads parked properly prior to shipping or they'd be damaged. I recall a new shipment from DEC that had to be specifically unpacked (from palettes) and installed by a DEC engineer.
Yeah, I said "we," but it was a DEC engineer who discovered the problem. And after the mention of the PDP series, I realized it's possible it was a PDP-11, not VAX. That was a long time ago... The first minicomputer we got in the lab I worked in was a PDP-8s, used for data collection on some new test equipment.
 



I purchased my first hard disk from Ehman Engineering in Wyoming. I think it was 30 megabytes, SCSI connection. So much extra capacity that I installed it on one Mac Plus with Macserve software so that the three Mac Plus machines could use the single hard disk over PhoneNet. A lot faster than floppy disks.
 


Even in the era of discrete ICs, it was relatively easy to find and replace a bad device. Today most electronic devices are comprised of an SoC (System on Chip), memory, storage, and a power supply. There's not much there to easily diagnose and repair.
But that computational power sometimes can be used, as in my LG washing machine, to generate a vast number of error codes which can be sent somewhere via the LG app. I know, in my car, it is difficult to explain to the dealer that this noise underneath the car is new and a problem without having a corresponding error code.

Then there is our GE electric dryer that is now 40 years old, and the only thing that I replaced is the belt that goes around the drum. And it got used a lot, raising kids.
 


As an inveterate, life-long fix-it guy, who has repaired kitchen appliances from toasters to high-end dishwashers to, yes, even a microwave oven, and who first got into the Macintosh consulting/repair game decades ago by taking them apart and figuring out what didn't work (I did know enough not to fry myself on the capacitors), I, too, have bemoaned the unfixablilty of modern machines and electronics.

My 1954 International Harvester pickup was an open book, if you will, when you opened the hood: everything right in front of you, and pretty obvious what was what. Now automobiles' insides are completely covered over, to be repaired by workers who are specialists in different components of the "operating system."

My first electronic fix was the circuit board in my mother's electric blanket – it had a burned out diode, which I removed then soldered in a new one from a Radio Shack not far away. First, though, I had to look through the book at Radio Shack to realize the color-codedness of the diodes.

Here in NYC, there used to be Radio Shacks (or Tandy) in almost every neighborhood, where you could buy any transistor or diode you needed. The quality control was not great – my first MIDI cable was defective; I returned it for another, which was also defective. The third one worked, and the store operator told me that, basically, I was the quality control: it was cheaper for the customer to find the defective parts. Discovering the defectiveness of the MIDI cable took me two hours: since I was new to MIDI, I figured the problem was that I was configuring it wrong. So I had to try everything, every which way, restarting the computer, trying to find conflicting extensions (system 7, probably), before I decided to try another cable. Fortunately, there was a Radio Shack two blocks away.
 


As much as we hated the "electrics by Lucas, the Prince of Darkness", the Triumph Spitfire was a joy to wrench. You'd pivot the entire hood forward and then sit on the front tire to do your engine work...which you'd be doing often.

If you think about it, this was pretty much the way the blue/grey/silver G3/G4 was designed; swing down the door and there were all the guts of the machine ready to work on.
 


Well, if we're writing about old systems...One of my clients gave me an old white MacBook (4,1), whose 80GB hard drive I wiped and reinstalled Snow Leopard on. Amazing how well it runs with only 2 GB of RAM (and I have a couple of 2GB modules on the shelf looking for a home). I imagine there are thousands of these still working (though the plastic is cracked and stained).

Now, I know best security practices would strongly suggest this machine be kept off the Internet, but I wonder what would keep it safe (other than wiping it and running Linux)? Probably any Internet apps that could run on it wouldn't even be allowed to connect to most servers.
 


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