[vcf-midatlantic] Young Innovators Faire

Joseph Oprysko joprysko1 at gmail.com
Wed Jan 6 00:11:22 EST 2016

I *have* an old Drexel Mac (not originally mine) but has the guys P.H.D.
Thesis paper on it. Would print it out if I could get a working ribbon for
my ImageWriter II. LOL

On Tuesday, January 5, 2016, Jeffrey Brace via vcf-midatlantic <
vcf-midatlantic at lists.vintagecomputerfederation.org> wrote:

> I was one of those Drexel University students who had to buy a Macintosh
> when I entered as a Freshman. Mine was an SE/30.
> Also yah! Someone not only knowing what Lode Runner was, but *requesting*
> it! They missed the Atari/Commodore/Android I had running it at Maker
> Faire. I would be happy to bring it there next year! :-D
> On Tue, Jan 5, 2016 at 9:33 PM, Todd George via vcf-midatlantic <
> vcf-midatlantic at lists.vintagecomputerfederation.org <javascript:;>> wrote:
> > Date: Sun, 03 Jan 2016 19:50:29 -0500
> > From: Evan Koblentz <evan at snarc.net <javascript:;>>
> > Subject: [vcf-midatlantic] Young Innovators Faire
> >
> > >Big thanks to you, Chris F., and Todd G. for representing us there!
> > >Generally speaking how did it go?
> >
> > Here's my report from the show (slightly modified from a previous version
> > of the report I sent to Evan, Doug and Chris)!
> >
> > I had a nice long talk with Gabe (co-founder of The Young Innovators
> Fair),
> > he told me how much he appreciated us being there.  He thought our booth
> > was a gigantic hit, and said he thought we were one of the busier
> > stand-alone/standard-sized booths at the event.  As of ~2 pm (??? it's
> all
> > a blur) on Sunday when I talked with him, they were far in excess of
> 20,000
> > (!!!) tickets sold for the weekend NOT INCLUDING something like a few
> > thousand (rumored) free/donation/charity tickets that they gave out.
> > Apparently those "free" tickets went unaccounted-for.  Saturday was
> > definitely the busier day, but Sunday proved to be a strong contender.  I
> > also need to brush up on my rollerskating skills, as Gabe had the
> brilliant
> > idea to wear roller skates at the event.  Definitely helps him get around
> > the place in an expedient fashion.
> >
> > Some of my favorite moments, a dad stopped at the booth while walking by
> > with his family, comes over to me and says "If you had asked me this
> > morning if anything here would make me stop dead in my tracks, I'd have
> > said 'No Way'.  This is amazing and has definitely stopped me in my
> > tracks".  We also received tons of positive feedback from the booth
> > guests.  There was a girl at our booth for nearly the entire day on
> > Saturday, she was 16 and "wants to be an engineer".  She was so
> > knowledgeable about all things computer and was really digging our booth.
> > She was extremely smart and was chatting with us off and on all day.  I
> > also had a great long talk with a gentleman who indicated his son had two
> > apps in the Apple App Store, had been programming since he was 8, was
> > probably 13 or so by my guess now.  He had never programmed in BASIC, so
> I
> > gave him some brief instruction.  He took to it like a duck to water.
> His
> > first program in BASIC?  "Hello World".  I only told him to "Put whatever
> > you want the computer to display inside the quotes."  A few people
> > commented how much they appreciated that our booth was "something
> > different".  I also directed a few people to actually join VCFed based on
> > discussions I had.  One guy had a bunch of Apple equipment set up on
> > display in his basement, said he curates and restores it.  He expressed
> > interest in improving his restoration skills (participation in workshops)
> > and really seemed interested in our group in general.  He had mentioned
> he
> > has no idea a group like ours existed.  I also lost count of how many
> > parents told us "how old we were making them feel", told me the story
> about
> > how "Drexel made us buy that Macintosh" (at least 20 people told me some
> > variant of this story), and indicated to their kids when we showed them
> the
> > 5 1/4" and 3 1/2" floppy disk props we had at the table how "they used to
> > store all of their high school/college work on those" while the kids just
> > looked as us with a blank stare.
> >
> > There was definitely an interesting combination of "parent-types" being
> > attracted to our booth, with their children in tow explaining to them how
> > these were the old computers they used to use.  The other side of that
> was
> > kids being attracted to the games we had up and running and then being
> > suckered into listening to their parents wax nostalgic once they realized
> > what hardware was running the games.
> >
> > The only failure we had at the VCF booth was our KayPro II.  The floppy
> > disks were warm when we pulled them out, but letting the machine cool
> down
> > didn't "fix" the problem.  Who knows, it was a long two days and this
> > computer probably isn't used to that kind of workload.  The one at the
> > booth wasn't mine, but I still feel bad that it gave up the ghost.  Funny
> > side story, my wife is tired of hearing me curse and complain about
> working
> > inside of my KayPro II.  To prove it, I sent a text to her and said "Hey,
> > the KayPro at our booth died".  Her reply was "Why, did you yell at it
> too
> > much?".  To put this into perspective even more, my wife doesn't know
> many
> > of the names of the computers I work on.  So that tells you how
> excellently
> > engineered the innards of the KayPro are that she knows what it's called
> > and has heard me bitch about it that much.
> >
> > The venue wasn't so lucky... Apparently their failures were numerous,
> > including the credit card processing at the concession stands failing,
> the
> > ATM machines logically emptying shortly thereafter, and to top it off the
> > vending machines emptying by around 11 am on Saturday.  Apparently their
> > credit card processing never came back online throughout the rest of the
> > weekend.  Between that and the ATM machines being empty, who knows how
> much
> > potential revenue they lost due to our "cashless society".
> >
> > We didn't have an Apple II with us, turns out that was a bit of an error
> as
> > we got lots of flack from people... "Where's Oregon Trail?", "Where's
> > Loadrunner?".  Surprisingly, the TRS-80 Model 4 was the star of the show
> in
> > my opinion.  I would have expected the Macintosh SE/30 to garner more
> > attention but it did not (ran a close second though).  So many people
> > commenting "Oh I had one of these in college" (about the Macintosh) or
> > "this was the computer I learned to program on" (about the TRS-80).  I
> was
> > also pleasantly amused by the sheer number of people walking up to the
> > table and yelling "Oh my gosh a Trash 80!".  I was also asked many, many
> > times how in the world we had a working TRS-80 of any variety.  Seems
> they
> > have a reputation of some sort for being troublesome or something.
> >
> > All-in-all, a great time!  I was so tired Saturday and Sunday night,
> tired
> > stretched into Monday.  But I'd do it again tomorrow, that's how much fun
> > we had.  :)
> >
> > Special thanks to Doug and Chris with whom this wouldn't have been
> > possible.  And of course Evan for putting it all together for us.
> > See ya!
> > -Todd
> >

Normal Person: Hey, it seems that you know a lot.
Geek: To be honest, it's due to all the surfing I do.
Normal Person: So you go surfing?
Normal Person: But I don't think that has anything to do with knowing a
Geek: I think that's wrong on a fundamental level.
Normal Person: Huh? Huh? What?

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