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VCF 6.0

VCF 6.0
I exhibited my Atari 800XL 8-bit computer at the 2003 Vintage Computer Festival, which took place at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California on October 11th and 12th.

Aside from the teletype, I was probably the noisiest exhibit. :^)

Day 0 - Friday Night

Last-minute preparations! (I borrowed Melissa's laptop to both demonstrate an Atari emulator, as well as boot my real Atari up with. I stayed at my friends Mike and Daphne's in Dublin, which was only 30min away from Mountain View.)

I borrowed some speakers, so tested them out with some demos ("More!" seen here).

Day 1 - Saturday

Before I was completely set up, I already had music blasting out of the laptop. ;^)

The Atari 800XL is booted! Anyone for a game of Ball Blazer?

Those little Commodore monitors are gorgeous.

"Intro 2" demo from a party in Orneta... what? 8 years ago!? Anyway, the emulator's doing well.

Sharing the corner with me was a fellow with some 16-bit systems. "Tomy Tutor" from the US, and "Tomy Pyuuta" from Japan. He also had a Commodore SX64; a portable C=64!

By far the largest exhibit was a set of PDP-11s near me!

Ya gotta love clear plastic computers!

What's this!? Another Atari!? This 800 was for the video game programming competition. Sadly, I guess all of us Atarians were too busy to take part. :^( Next year, though!!!

I also had some paperwork at my display, describing the various chips in the Atari, and explaining the different graphics modes the Atari can do (in hardware, or software). (A few people even looked at this!)

A collection of classic arcade title cartridges from Atari.

Some Parker Brothers carts, and other random early 80s titles, plus some XEGS-era titles, and some even newer stuff!

Two Star Raiders carts. Notice one isn't plural?

I brougth a pair of Sega Genesis controllers, rather than old-school joysticks.

Sellam, who put together the show, was kind enough to print out an Atari fuji logo on my ID card! Cool!

The first visitors to my booth!

After the show, many of us went to the Tide House for dinner.

Day 2 - Sunday

Mike and Daphne came, and Mike drove, so I got to take some photos of the scenery. I remember seeing these satellite dishes as a kid. (They're huge!)

More huge memories from when I was a kid. A hangar at Moffet Field.

More big hangars.

The Computer History Museum. Apparently, they moved recently. (They were at Moffet Field before.) This building used to belong to SGI.

Bill Gates pie-in-the-face video animation. On the Atari, of course! (Well, the emulator...)

StarWorx music demo (converted from an Amiga MOD by Friday, probably about 10 years ago!) Had to run it on the real Atari. The old POKEY code in Atari800 couldn't keep up!

The Tomy Tutor guy couldn't be there Sunday, so I had a little room to stretch out...

Mike looks quite amused over the old Unix running on the PDP.

One of the PDP exhibitors...

...being told by his co-exhibitor that he can't run vi, he'll have to use ed. "Noooooooo!"

Hey! An old Commodore PET! I used those in middle school!

An old, black-and-white Trash... err... TRS-80!

I used to have a dumb terminal that looked like the thing on the right. How futuristic! (The box on the left looks like ORAC's grandpa.)

Portrait (rather than landscape) monitor. Andy Meyer writes in: "It's one of the earliest windowing terminals called the Teletype 5620 DMD."

A newer (or at least more expensive) looking system.

An Apple IIgs with the case cracked open.

An old Atari Portfolio PDA!...

...from the "PDAs of the last 20+ years" exhibit.

A Commodore 64 running the new Contiki software, browsing the web! WOW!

Varous Commodore models (C=16, VIC20, C=64)

There's that Commodore 64 ethernet cartridge! (from Retro Replay)

The owner was kind enough to pop it open and show me the insides.

More of the inside of the Commodore ethernet cartridge.

Some kids who enjoy classic games (and are irritated by crappy $50 games for new systems).

They were enjoying Space Invaders.

My Atarian friends Bob "he still has my 1200XL" Woolley and Ben Corr (who's making that face over some large monetary value)

Bob set up a pair of his hacked 1200XLs.

This Atari 1200XL has a Compact Flash memory card reader in it!

1200XLs look so naked without the brown cover.

The 1200XL with the Compact Flash, booted up. (You can barely tell, but it's also connected to the TV via S-Video, not composite. Of course!)

Inside one of the 1200XLs. He's taken out a lot of chips (for example, all of the little RAM chips) and replace it with newer, less energy-consuming hardware (on the breadboard he's pointing at), so that it doesn't need a power supply upgrade.

The 256K RAM has battery back-up, so he can shut it off and not loose his RAMdisk.

Bob and Ben ended up taking over the space the Tomy Tutor guy had been using.

Another cartridge game running: Robotron: 2084.

Before I took them down, I had to get a shot of the little Atari 8-bit sign...

...and Atari Fuji logo.

Big systems needed to be packed into big boxes!

Most of my display fit in a laundry basket! ;^)

A laptop case did well to hold all the cables, power adapters and controllers.

Bob had that big TV, and those big 1200XLs, so he needed a cart!

End of the day - the programming competition was over!

I noticed the Apple IIgs was signed by Steve Wozniac!

So the owner had to show off more Woz-signed memorabilia.

A crowd draws as they do more awards and the competition ends.

On the way back to my booth, I finally get to wander by the Commodore Amiga display, as they're packing up.

The innards of an award-winning Amiga.

A photo of me demonstrating to a Commodore 64 devotee.
Taken by Erik Klein of the Vintage Computer Forum

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