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tschak909

IRATA.ONLINE - a PLATO community for Retro-computing fans!

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Perhaps youtube is not the best place for this kind of stuff. I would concentrate on forums/blogs such as these and other net places where olden computer enthusiasts gather and get their news from. There are still enthusiasts of TRS-80 for example Maybe it's also worth contacting outlets such as RetroGamer - if you haven't already.

 

I'm not a big fan of reddit in general but it did help with some of my obscure projects. The exposure is huge, problem is it's only for one hot minute, especially if the hivemind there doesn't like it for some reason.

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Honestly, I'm just pissed, because this seems to be the immediate impression with everybody who would actually be able to promote the system. Even with explanation, they don't understand the gap that's being filled.

 

-Thom

 

 

Like most popular things, these channels on youtube are going for the least common denominator when it comes to viewers. The kind of viewers who think that the late 70's/early 80's consisted of nothing much more than Old Computers, Arcades, Atari, Star Wars and Back To The Future... rinse and repeat. As I remember it, being a nerd back then actually made you a social pariah and subject to verbal and even physical abuse. The movie Revenge of The Nerds was not that far off in that regard. Now its trendy to be into technology, I suspect the only reason is because there is so much money in the I.T. field these days and more opportunities for simpletons to make a buck. Now you have the popularity of playing "pretend geek". But IMHO that river does not run very deep. Most viewers of these type of channels would not give a damn about PLATO service and its history. I might be exaggerating a bit but anything even slightly esoteric is going to be a hard sell. You might have accept that your service is not going to be very popular. If you enjoy running it, which I think you do, then it should not matter that much. Best of luck.

Edited by polyex
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Thom, are you doing your own YouTube channel? If these "popular" channels will not give you "air time," then perhaps doing it on your own, or with the help of those in on the project, will bring in interest on its own.

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VCF East was a success. There were approximately 50 people or so in the room, and it was video'd, so I am waiting for it to magically pop up onto youtube.

 

I managed to squeeze about 2 hours of content down into 1 hour, without rushing or cutting off, which, surprised the hell out of me.

 

Very enthusiastic response; people really liked it, and I stayed for the weekend to show it off at a table. I was not expecting to do this, so Thanks to Evan and the VCFe staff for that. :)

 

-Thom

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So, some status updates:



I have been asked to speak at VCF West, the first weekend in August at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA. I will be on after the talk given by Brian Dear (the author of The Friendly Orange Glow, the book about PLATO and its history who literally inspired me to DO THIS in the first place.) It will be a nice book-ended pair of talks, with Brian talking about the past, and me talking about the present and future of PLATO especially in the context of the vintage computing community that would benefit most from it.



I also have been asked to speak at VCF Midwest in Chicago in September.



I have been hosting meets weekly, the next pair of meets will be:



Saturday, June 2nd, 10am-12pm CDT


Sunday, June 3rd, 10am-12pm CDT



Meet links on the site in my signature.



-Thom


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The next two meets are:

 

Saturday, June 9th, 10am-12pm CDT

Sunday, June 10th, 10am-12pm CDT

Meet links on the site in my signature.

-Thom

Edited by tschak909
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The next two IRATA.ONLINE meets are scheduled for:

Saturday, June 30th, 10a-12p CDT

Sunday, July 1st, 10a-12p CDT



Meet links on the site in my signature.



-Thom

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Hello, everyone.

 

I’m writing here because I need to ask something of the communities that IRATA.ONLINE is and intends to service:

 

What can I do better?

 

As of now, there is one person actively working on IRATA.ONLINE. Me. I am maintaining the service, making demonstration videos, and writing terminals for over 12 different systems, as well as their documentation.

 

I have also been providing a meeting space, online, so that I can show the system to interested people, so they can see what the system is all about, and why it’s very special. These meets happen every saturday and every sunday from 10am to 12pm CDT, and the meet details are on the website. These meets started at the end of March, and continue to this day, periodically mentioning everywhere I can, once a week, that these meets are happening, on Facebook, Google+, and on every online forum dedicated to various retro-computing systems, that I can find. I have also reached out to magazines, and tried to provide something as close to a press release that I can give, for something that is not a company, and does not bring in any revenue.

 

This has translated into an average of about 25 to 30 people per week creating sign-ons.

 

But the meets have seen very little activity, and I’m curious, is it something I could be doing better?

 

The whole point of the meets is to show people the system, and to be on hand to answer questions, and take the demonstration into places determined by the people present, so that people can get excited about the system, see why I am doing this, and perhaps help out with the project.

 

While I am capable of wearing many different hats, I would very much like help from people to:

 

* Use the system, and tell me what could be made better.

* Get authors to make new programs to run on the system, anything, most probably games, but the development environment will allow for all sorts of stuff to be possible.

* Get people interested in being systems staff to help maintain the system.

* Interest archaeologists to dig into the system and discover and document what they find, there is several decades worth of code in here that needs to be understood.

* We need people to write terminals. Terminals need to be made for the following systems:

** Commodore 64 (in progress)

** Commodore 128 (in progress)

** Color Computer 3 (in progress)

** Apple II

** Apple Iigs

** Atari 800 (a new one based on the current code)

** Coleco ADAM

** MSX

** TI 99/4A

** Atari ST

** Commodore Amiga

 

And again, I do demonstrations of this system, because it is so unique, and offers the retro-computing communities, ALL OF THEM, the ability to create something that we can all share, and call our own.

 

Also, I need to remind, that I will be speaking at VCF West, AND VCF Midwest, so you can see a demo, and talk to me, there. :)

 

-Thom Cherryhomes

http://www.irata.online/

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Just a Reminder...

 

Next Weekend is VCF-West in Mountain View, CA.....

 

 

Thomas Cherryholmes is doing a presentation about IRATA.ONLNE, right after Brian Dear's presentation on his book, "THE friendly ORANGE GLOW"

 

I'm planning on attending!!!

 

VCF-West Speakers

 

 

MarkO

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I am logging in everday with my C64 and Platoterm 64 the platoterm 64 works real good, The keyboard is a bit hard to

get used to you have to use the commodore key and right shift key and you will have to figer them out or go along and use the help

menu.

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Hi Thom,

 

I hope you aren't getting discouraged. I have been keeping a close eye on all of this PLATO/IRATA stuff you've been doing and I for one am really interested in it. So far, I have just been lurking and not actively participating yet.

 

The main reason for me, is that my spare time has been drastically reduced the past few months and it's taking a bit for me to figure out how to get my A8 online. That's the 2nd main reason I haven't hopped aboard yet.

 

Originally, I was hoping I could magically use my Rpi3 along with my SIO2PC/USB and connect with the Cyber1 server and the Plato cart, but after more research learned I needed an 850. Trying to do this on the cheap, it's taking awhile to get all this stuff figured out.

 

I'm personally interested in the old mainframe dungeon crawlers, so that's been my driving motivation so far in what I'd like out of it. I'd also like to dig into the old lessons and see what lurks in there. It's a fascinating system.

 

I have checked out Cyber1 with Pterm and really like what I've seen, I just want to wait to dig deeper until I can do it from the comfort of my 800XL.

 

Anyway, just know that there are people like me who might not be aboard yet, but are working towards getting in there and exploring. I really appreciate what you're doing, so please keep up the good work! :)

 

Thanks

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Hi Thom,

 

I hope you aren't getting discouraged. I have been keeping a close eye on all of this PLATO/IRATA stuff you've been doing and I for one am really interested in it. So far, I have just been lurking and not actively participating yet.

 

The main reason for me, is that my spare time has been drastically reduced the past few months and it's taking a bit for me to figure out how to get my A8 online. That's the 2nd main reason I haven't hopped aboard yet.

 

Originally, I was hoping I could magically use my Rpi3 along with my SIO2PC/USB and connect with the Cyber1 server and the Plato cart, but after more research learned I needed an 850. Trying to do this on the cheap, it's taking awhile to get all this stuff figured out.

 

I'm personally interested in the old mainframe dungeon crawlers, so that's been my driving motivation so far in what I'd like out of it. I'd also like to dig into the old lessons and see what lurks in there. It's a fascinating system.

 

I have checked out Cyber1 with Pterm and really like what I've seen, I just want to wait to dig deeper until I can do it from the comfort of my 800XL.

 

Anyway, just know that there are people like me who might not be aboard yet, but are working towards getting in there and exploring. I really appreciate what you're doing, so please keep up the good work! :)

 

Thanks

 

Oh, I'm not, I'm literally just knee deep in implementing 12 different terminals, for different systems all in parallel, while also trying to do the occasional speaking engagement to drum up interest. :)

 

-Thom

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Oh, I'm not, I'm literally just knee deep in implementing 12 different terminals, for different systems all in parallel, while also trying to do the occasional speaking engagement to drum up interest. :)

 

-Thom

 

I'm looking forward to your presentation at VCFMW this year :)

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Thom,

 

Please continue. I am very interested and see that gap clearly. If you ask me, it will take time for others to see it.

 

Networked retro systems are just one notch harder on the accessibility scale, and that tends to weed out a lot of people. At least first time around.

 

I personally need a bit of time before getting in to this. Got a full house, and no room to play. This will pass. Cannot wait.

 

One thought I had was to make terminals for microcontrollers, or at least one. Doing that might expand the potential audience. The resources and video capability needed is within reach of some of the chips. I want to do that, in addition to participating on my Apple.

 

Maybe involving the Rapberry PI would garner some attention too.

 

The cross platform mature of this thing has a lot of potential. I mention these other ideas with the intent of getting some critical mass barrier crossed, in terms of community. Maybe bad ideas. Take them as just thoughts aimed at some growth.

 

Keep at it. I will bet more people get into it as things get easier to do.

Edited by potatohead

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@potatohead - There is a build of cyber1's pterm for the Raspberry Pi & Raspbian.. http://rpi.irata.online/

 

I am also planning an architecture for a Webassembly version of PLATOTerm, which will be used to target web browsers, and mobile devices (android and ios), with a corresponding websockets proxy server which will keep terminal persistence possible on mobile connections.

 

-Thom

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One code base, many targets. These are the 8-bit targets so far, Atari 8-bit, Commodore 64, Commodore 128 (not pictured), Apple ][, TI 99/4A, Sinclair ZX Spectrum, and Amstrad CPC. Many more to come. 1f642.png:) #irataonline #plato#crossplatform #8bit

 

many_8_bits.PNG

Great seeing this. Even giving attention to the ZX Spectrum. That's just awesome! Edited by Centurion

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To everyone testing here:

 

I have added functionality to specify XON and XOFF threshold values, in the SETUP menu (by pressing the OPTION) key.

 

Select X)ONOFF

 

and you can enter new values. Pressing enter should keep the existing value.

 

by default, xon and off is 46 and 127 respectively.

 

No, I will not be adding functionality to change the buffer size, as this would cause potential crashes. memory is tight.

 

plato-180916-xonoff-settings.atr

 

-Thom

Edited by tschak909

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Hmmm...

I'm definitely not a mainframe guy even though I am of the generation they were prevalent.

I would think that if anyone, anywhere, spends the amount of time and effort to do something like this, they should be supported, applauded, even, and, at the very least, not lambasted. It's a lot of work.

 

Keep up the fight. I think this stuff is great even though I am not likely to immerse myself in it.

Edited by Zonie

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I enjoyed the demo at VCFMW. I had no idea this existed back in the day even though I worked with CDCs and Cybers at MSU from 1977 to 1982, and I followed Artwick's FS work. Cool that it's being preserved. Keep up the good work.

Edited by ClausB
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Thank you. It's not that it's just being preserved, am hoping with the development environment, that we all can make totally new things for all of us.

 

-Thom

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PLATOTerm continues its march across every damned platform it can put itself on, now: (click to view each)

 

Spectravideo SVI-3x8:

post-9462-0-26597600-1537316855_thumb.gif

 

MSX:

post-9462-0-71390100-1537316861_thumb.gif

 

Tatung Einstein:

post-9462-0-31371300-1537316868_thumb.gif

 

 

Next up, Memotech MTX-512! :)

 

-Thom

Edited by tschak909

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