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Retro Rogue

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Retro Rogue last won the day on October 7 2012

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About Retro Rogue

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    River Patroller
  • Birthday 03/24/1971

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    Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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  1. There seem to be a lot of misconceptions about things Atari Museum related past and present. 1) There was no "infighting", there is no one "ripping the museum apart". Someone with no connection to the Atari Museum tried to take over the website when the server went down. This is the same guy that sent legal papers and harrased Curt's widow with phone calls, emails, etc. for months after his death. Likewise he called around to storage units around Curt's locale looking to try and locate any he had and buy them out from under Curt's family's nose. I was and am a partner in the Atari Museum, Karl Morris (UK) was and is involved as well. I was chosen by Curt to oversee the museum and am legally named by him and his family to oversee that portion of the estate. 2) The Atari Museum is an actual archive and has been around since the 90s, it is not simply a website. There's the main part at Curt's in New York, and I ran a section of it from Milwaukee (before taking it over). It actively worked (and works) with Atari alumni to preserve the history of Atari Inc., Atari Corp. and Atari Games. Everything was professionally archived, cataloged, shown at various shows, loaned out to museums and institutions, and used to provide assistance for researchers and the like. Anyone that knew Curt knows he worked tirelessly at this, and besides building an established network of Atari alumni who donated a lot of his content he spent large amounts of his own money acquiring a good portion of the content besides all the money spent digging up documentation. (When we went and got the legal documentation for the Atari/Amiga lawsuit for instance, we weren't able to simply request searches for specific documents or content. So we had to purchase copies of all the documents in bulk (several boxes full) in its entirety and ship them over). It was never declared to be a non-profit, however I strongly resent the implication by the thread starter that not declaring as such somehow labels these long ongoing archival efforts as akin to an Ebay flipper. Curt certainly made multiples of some items in the archive available for purchase by collectors over the years or in some cases would sell less rare items to other collectors to fund more expensive acquisitions but almost always with a buyback agreement. The Atari Museum archive, in its entirety, represents the bulk of what is left of Atari Inc.'s Consumer Division as well as of Atari Corp. I was just at his place beginning the long and arduous process of cataloging everything item per item. Whether sheet by sheet of a large book of engineering schematics or a simple promo pin, it's getting individually recorded. I was there for five days doing it 12 hours a day and still only got through a 1/4 of what's there. That should give you an idea of the size of it. 3) I am going to do my best keeping the operations and efforts for Atari preservation that Curt started, going. That includes continuing to work with alumni, museums and archives, businesses (like the current Atari), etc. It includes going to shows to show items to the public. It also includes continuing forward with the second edition of 'Business Is Fun' for the 50th anniversary this coming year, and the website which is up but not finished because Karl and I are going through an extensive redesign based on what Curt originally wanted before he passed. I will also be expanding out the Atari Museum site to bring in other well known researchers and Atari alumni to be directly involved with its efforts. 4) If the original poster is still concerned, which is his prerogative, I would suggest contacting any of the well known museums that are declared non-profit to see about donating. Don't bother with the Computer History Museum in California though, they're not taking anything and are already filled to the brim. Which is a very real problem, as many places might never actually put an item on display (or very rarely) if that's what you're looking to happen. Quite often items will simply be stored in an archival warehouse like at the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Additionally, just because an entity is non-profit, that does not mean whatever is donated will not be sold to acquire other more valuable items. It simply means the goal of the entity is not to flip an item to make money for the people that operate it. They can still do so to make money for the operation itself. Either way, feel free to reach out to me via the Atari Museum group on facebook if you're interested in talking about the items you have. My mailbox is full here, and I don't delete old conversations (I prefer to keep them to refer to - which is why I have a huge gmail archive of conversations with Ted Dabney, Ralph Baer, and a host of other deceased and living notables as well as research conversations with Curt that I can still search though).
  2. To clarify, Fred is no longer involved. I've opened the lines of communications again and so far the people in charge now seem to be very passionate about the brand and legacy and want to move beyond the "We're a licensing company" issues that happened under Fred. Hoping to be able to announce some cool things myself (and the Atari Museum) will be partnered with this year next year for the 50th.
  3. For what it's worth, when I was over there last month beginning to catalog everything he had a 1090 and related documents on his desk (next to his XM project area). Now I know why that was there.
  4. Hi Dennis, I talked with Curt at length at the time and he's the culprit for the initial coding of that. It had been his first attempt at hacking a ROM but something he really wanted to try and accomplish, which I was surprised because I always knew him as far more of an engineer at that time. He may have leaned on the firm at some point in addition, but he already knew from the mishaps with the Flashback 1 ports that they didn't understand the 2600.
  5. Crazy, the names have changed but I’m seeing the same conversations, comments and claims recycling from 10, 15, and 20 years ago.
  6. Full. For like six years now. I always keep old conversations for reference purposes, my gmail goes back to like 2005 (all my correspondence with Curt, Ralph Baer, Ted Dabney, etc. etc.). Feel free to reach out to me on facebook if you need to talk privately.
  7. Looks like my post from the Atari Museum facebook group (which I'm also in charge of) already made it over. To make it clear, as Curt's partner in the Atari Museum I have the efforts to relaunch, maintain, and update the site for the future under control. Nobody else has any authorization. Look for it in the coming weeks. That being said, it's never stopped anyone from wholesale copying the site or it's material in the past and Curt just usually ignored it because frankly it wasn't worth the effort. Likewise any claims of working with the family or me ducking someone refusing to work with them are false. Point blank when Curt died, within a day or so both myself and Curt's family were inundated with threatening emails from Mr. McLemore threatening lawsuits, federal investigations and other "big stick" tactics. I and the family have copies of everything. He is lying when he claims he's "been working with them". His wife is still grieving heavily and facing huge financial issues left behind and his wife as an infectious disease specialist is still very busy with Covid issues in New York. When Curt first died I posted a status that I would be going in at some point to go through everything and doing my best to try and get things back to people that Curt was either working on or had borrowed. Yet Mr. McLemore continued to harass with hyper-aggressive threats in his emails. Per my talks with the family I chose not to respond because frankly once he escalated things to those types of legal threats it's out of my hands. He continued and I blocked him on Facebook and elsewhere. I also made sure copies of all those emails were distributed just in case claims like these were to be made in the future. His current efforts now with the site also seem to be based on the same quick rush in strong arm tactic than anything genuine, like he's looking at this as just another thing to try and take over for something he feels he's owed. For everyone else, I will still be going in to help the family out with items people are owed. My trip last October was delayed due to the covid upsurge. The plan is to go in soon, assess everything there overall, separate the items people are owed and arrange to ship them out (which I'll probably be paying out of pocket). The Atari Museum website (the official one) will be relaunching again soon in an updated format along with sections for our book and other initiatives that will involved other people lined up to be involved with the site as well.
  8. Reposting here. I am the one who had the unfortunate responsibility of breaking the news to the public after hearing it from his wife. I am still in shock at the loss of my friend. Yes it was his heart though an autopsy is not going to be done because of Covid restrictions.I’ve posted about the funeral arrangements on the Atari Museum Facebook group. I’m going to be working with his wife at some point in the near future to bring some order into the sad chaos that has arisen from his sudden departure. That includes going through the voluminous Atari museum archive, all the projects he was working on for people, any business related things, and so on. It’s quite the undertaking but it has to be done. And I want to make sure I do everything possible to preserve his legacy and what he was trying to accomplish, and what I was fortunate enough to be a part of for sometime now. Regarding the XM, I was not involved directly with that but I will be including that in the list of things I have to be going through and seeing what I could do to keep moving it forward. I do know that any and all money went towards the tooling for the cases early on, so he anybody else brought in was basically doing their work for nothing all this time out of the pure love for it and to see it finished. So anybody I can try and work with to finish this up would have to be working on it out of that same respect, and possible future sales. But none of this is my expertise, my work on Curt’s projects has always been in software, waiting, graphic arts and marketing. Right now everything is just under lockdown and completely in stasis and safe, while the family deals with his upcoming funeral and immediate aftermath of his sudden death.
  9. I am the one who had the unfortunate responsibility of breaking the news to the public after hearing it from his wife. I am still in shock at the loss of my friend. Yes it was his heart though an autopsy is not going to be done because of Covid restrictions.I’ve posted about the funeral arrangements on the Atari Museum Facebook group. I’m going to be working with his wife at some point in the near future to bring some order into the sad chaos that has arisen from his sudden departure. That includes going through the voluminous Atari museum archive, all the projects he was working on for people, any business related things, and so on. It’s quite the undertaking but it has to be done. And I want to make sure I do everything possible to preserve his legacy and what he was trying to accomplish, and what I was fortunate enough to be a part of for sometime now.
  10. Yup, it was designed similar to how Cyan was already doing that stuff in coin (Cyan was doing most of the protos and proof of concepts for coin and then they'd be sent down to Atari to be put in production format). Not a huge leap from how things were already being done then when creating versions of all those earl and mid 70s coins for it then.
  11. The book is primarily about the development of the line itself, technical and story wise. If you're not familiar, Joe was the co-creator (with Jay Miner) of the 400/800 PCS. If you've read Racing the Beam and the Future Was Here, it's intended to be in that vein only authored by someone directly involved rather than an outside author. XL stands for Extended Line, it was in a magazine interview with an Atari exec back in the day, which is where Curt got it from. Likewise it was named the 1000 (16k) and 1000x (64k) by marketing during development, and 1200 and 1200x in the Sweet16 project spec docmument.
  12. That's because that's more of an overstated myth, coming from years of the general public not knowing what was actually going on there and grabbing on to whatever soundbites were available. (As an example, overproduction of Pac-Man is usually thrown up as an example. However the Pac-Man productions numbers include number of carts needed for both the projected amount of VCS consoles out there by the end of that year (which was actually correct) plus for use as the pack-in for the VCS to replace Combat). We cleared some of it up in the book and we'll be adding more in the second edition. It mostly had to do with the consumer industry going through a cycle other consumer tech industries (calculators, electronic watches) had during the 70s (shortage into glut and then crash), and Atari not adopting the same market watch and production controls as the music industry since neither Warner or Atari management thought demand was anywhere near to dropping. The shortage lead them to have retailers place bulk orders for '82 that fall of '81, which in turn lead to overinflated earnings projection (since they only tracked sell in numbers and not sell through). It was of course compounded by the large entry of third party game manufacturers that summer (most of which were gone within a year).
  13. Joe Decuir is already working on the definitive Atari 8-bit historical book. Myself and a few others are helping out on it. It's meant to fit somewhere in between Racing The Beam and The Future Was Here.
  14. Regarding Jay Miner, Jay wanted to do a 68000 based computer back in early '79 when they had just finished development of the PCSs and before they had even been released. With the amount of money they had already invested into the development of those computers, (and just coming off a big year of losses in '78 in it's the Consumer area) it's not a surprise they didn't want to pursue the expense of development of a 68000 computer at that time. Keep in mind the 68000 was itself just being put on the market that year, so development of a 68K computer was extremely expensive not to mention as to how prohibitive the cost of said computer would have been when it hit the market in '81. The decision to not pursue a 68K computer in early '79 really didn't have to do with lack of "vision" but rather clarity of the market at that time. The home computer market in 1979 was anything but a sure thing (a point Joe Decuir brought up in his talk two weekends ago), and as stated they had yet to even begin sellings the PCSs. They had no idea how they'd perform or whether they'd even just wind up pulling out. (Ray claimed to us that he was even in informal talks with Jobs about buying Apple and possibly cancelling the PCS but that Ross at Warner had nixed that). The explosion of personal computers really didn't start until several years later driven chiefly by IBM's entry and Commodore's dominance on the low end. And as I said, it was a decision not to pursue one at that time. Not all together. Jay (mainly because of separate monetary issues going on at Atari) decided it wasn't worth it to stick around until it was. (And it wasn't as if he went right off to do his 68000 based computer elsewhere. He switched over into medical electronics). Joe Decuir stayed around until early summer to see initial manufacturing to completion and took off for the same reasons, though he separately brought up about a 68000 based computer as well in his exit meeting and was given the same answer. Atari did start working on high end 68000 based computers in 1983, when putting out 68000 based computers to the type of customer base Atari was serving became a bit more feasible. But even then they were going to be targeted more towards businesses.
  15. I think you mean SEGA, and no it's not a clone system. They're by Tectoy, SEGA's licensed representative there since the late 80s. There are clone manufacturers down there as well, because it's still a big market for the console and its games that's been continuous since then. Not a Retron5 clone aftermarket thing. You can read more about it here: http://tedium.co/2015/07/16/sega-master-system-brazil/
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