Monthly Archives: December 2010

Apple III Forever

Okay, let’s just call this what it is:  an Apple III blog.  Sure, I cover Apple II stuff on occasion and even the Macintosh gets mentioned now and then.  But really, the main focus here mirrors my current retrocomputing interest and lately, that’s the Apple III.  The more time I spend digging  and playing and tweaking around in my IIIs, the cooler they seem.  Besides, there are plenty of other Apple II blogs out there.  Most of them are more technical that what I can provide here, and many are better written.  So if you’re looking for current, somewhat regularly updated information on the Apple II’s reviled big brother, you’ve come to the right place.  If not, there are plenty of links just to the left that might better suit your interest.

Rupert Lissner's /// EZ Pieces, the Apple III version of AppleWorks

I say this as much to focus my attention and hopefully help increase my creative output here, as to warn you off.  The three of you who read this rag with any kind of regularity probably don’t care much either way.

That said, I’ll start off with a couple of items that I should have already covered.  First, a slightly belated happy birthday to the Apple III+, which was introduced on December 26, 1983.  Apple gave one last, half-hearted attempt to erase some of the damage to its reputation caused by the original III with this much improved business computer, but it didn’t live long.  The III+ was discontinued in April 1984 on the same day that the IIc was introduced.

Next up, the photo caption contest.  I received a total of three entries for the contest.  They are:

Eric R.: “Noooooo! I was just working for 3 hours on that report, and my Apple III crashed!”

Wholly Mindless: “Dropping it did make it work!!!!”

Sean F: “After tedious hours of hacking, Lori gets Group 7 access and manages to contact Flynn”

While I found all three comments funny, I have to give it to Sean F (he of  Not only witty, but with the release of the completely awesome Tron sequel, timely too!  Congrats Sean.  I have… um.  I don’t know.  Something for you.  Maybe I’ll bring it to KFest!  Thanks to everyone who participated.

In other news, the latest Juiced.GS shipped recently and should by now be in the hands of readers everywhere.  My Apple III article made the cover this time (woo hoo!).  In it, I take a look at some of the technologies introduced in the Apple III that found more success in later Apple products.  Due mainly to space considerations, several of these ended up on the cutting room floor and I’ll cover them in an upcoming blog post.  Other topics I’m considering include the On Three 512K memory board upgrade for the III, and maybe some coverage on the Apple III Plus itself.

Stay tuned…

More Apple III Randomness

Inspired by a recent posting to the comp.sys.apple2 Usenet newsgroup, I went ahead and scanned and posted all four issues of Apple /// Dimensions.  This was a newsletter that Apple published beginning around the time it launched the newly revised Apple III, as a step toward boosting sagging sales.  The revised III, of course, corrected many of the problems found in the original III and came with a reduced price and the option to buy a 5 MB ProFile hard disk drive system.  The newsletter is mostly thinly-veiled advertising, but there are some good bits here and there, such as the “Technical Notes” column.  Additionally, Apple /// Dimensions was intended to shepherd users through the warranty replacement/upgrade process, if they were unlucky enough to own one of the first 14,000 machines out of the factory.

Each newsletter is 8 pages long, and you can download the PDFs here.

As I was scanning, I came across this picture in one of the newsletters.  I couldn’t resist posting it here, because when I start to think of things that might be going through her mind, I start to giggle.



So, without further ado, I’m announcing the first ever (and quite possible last ever) 6502 Lane Photo Caption contest.  I haven’t decided what (if anything) the winner will get, but I’m thinking I’ll actually give away something more than just my undying respect for your quick wit.  Since it’s an Apple III-related picture, whatever I give away will probably be, well, related in some way to the Apple III.  That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t participate if you’re not interested in the III, though, right?  I’m mean, c’mon!  It’s my undying respect!

So send me your entry and I’ll pick the winner from what will undoubtedly be a short list.  As I don’t actually know what email address is associate with this site (embarrassing, right?), just use the Contact Us form here and fill in your entry in the body of the message.

Finally, the Apple III has made another Worst Of list.  This time, it shares the ignominious honor with the Lisa and several other top Apple failures in the January 2011 issue of Maximum PC.  The list, handily called “The List” goes where so many have gone before, listing their favorite Apple failures.  Well, if you can’t beat ‘em, remind ‘em how much they used to suck, I guess… (Note: Maximum PC’s web page doesn’t seem to have the list available to browse online, so you’ll actually have to pick up the magazine at your local book store to read it… Or, I guess if you want to throw your money away, you can buy it in this eBay auction.  Only $8.99 + $3.99 shipping.)