RetroMacCast

Where great old Macs live again!

Hello, my name is Sean, and I have a problem.

 

I collect old Apple computers. It's been 2 hours since my last use of an old Apple computer.

 

I've had issues around controlling my use of Apple computers since I first touched one in 1982. The Apple ][ europlus was the first computer in my home (I'd used a Trash-80 at school, but that was just a gateway [not Gateway™] computer for me).

 

The europlus had me hooked from the first beep. I yearned for that 5.25" Drive ][ sound. The green glow felt like the warm sun washing over me. That little multi-coloured Apple logo was like a beacon of joy. I couldn't get enough.

 

Times moved on. I got to use a Lisa in late '83 while temping at a local Apple dealer - I could see GUI was the future. I used an original Macintosh at school from mid-late 1984 through '85 (the disk swap shuffle was familiar to me) and we revamped the school newspaper from typewritten to MacWrite and MacPaint laid out in short shrift.

 

A Mac 512K replaced the europlus at home at the end on '85. I spent my '85-86 summer holidays in the guts of the OS, playing with ResEdit and listening to the Moose. The 512K was upgraded to a Mac Plus. I got a job in DTP in '86 and was surrounded by Macs. During dark days when I worked on PCs, I worked for the Sydney bureau of Newsbytes News Network, which allowed me to review Mac hardware and software, which led to writing for Australian computer publications, most notably (on the Mac front) for MacNews, which merged with MacUser and took the latter's title, which then merged with Australian Macworld and took the latter's title again.

 

I started my own Mac consultancy in 1997 and have been totally immersed in Macs ever since.

 

I always remembered my europlus, however, and wish I'd never let it get away. An opportunity arose in late 1998 to get a free IIgs - I snapped it up and was back in ][ heaven. The collection started to grow, like barnacles on a boat. I gained a few old Macs on the way (I'm an inveterate hoarder, and even though I wasn't particularly interested in collecting old Macs, I hated to see them go to the dump). I have 4 europluses. Probably 8-10 //e's. 2 or 3 IIgs's. Several IIc's. 2 512K Macs, a Mac Plus and an LC 575 (which makes a great //e with the //e card). Lots of interface cards, cables, many monitors, disks and disk drives. I recently acquired an eMate 300.

 

I got an Apple logo tattoo (six colour, of course) in December '08 (a 40th birthday present from my kids, who knew I'd wanted one for many years). I use The Best of FTA iOS app to get Apple II goodness on my iPad, and love the idea of emulators in general. I gave my son a //e when he was about 10 and he started learning programming in AppleSoft BASIC - he's now blitzing a Computer Science degree at Sydney University.

 

I've rescued TRS-80s, Commodores (sorry!) and various other micros. I joined the Australian Computer Museum Society and help curate their 8-bit micro and Apple collection (oh, for a site for an actual museum, rather than just having everything in storage!).

 

I started to give away the non Apple equipment (might keep a Trash-80 for old time's sake) and even many of the Macs I had previously collected from the beginning of last year to try and control by problem - unfortunately, I don't think we'll ever get that garage shelf spaces back :)

 

My move to solid stating as much of my mass storage began with the 20MB 2.5" attached to my first //e's FocusDrive card died (the seals dissolved themselves and that killed the drive) - I got a CF to IDE 44 pin adaptor and the card lived again. I've ordered a CFFA3000 for CF and USB use on the ][s, a CF to IDE 40 for any machines which need that, and just purchased a SCSI card reader with a PCMCIA slot and a PCMCIA CF card reader to use in place of any 3.5" 50 pin SCSI drives (such as the one in my LC 575) should I require it.

 

Once the CFAA3000 arrives, I'll finish imaging my 5.25" disks and reduce my use of the physical disks and drives - but I will miss that clunky clatter on startup!

 

Sean

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