Take on the Overlord at ROUGOL in June

Overlord game screen shot (pic Amcog)
Overlord game screen shot (pic Amcog)

The RISC OS User Group of London (ROUGOL) has announced details of its next meeting, which is set to take place on Monday 15th June.

The focus of the meeting will be a special presentation about the new RISC OS game, Overlord, which will be given by Anthony Bartram of Amcog Games

Overlord was released at the Wakefield Acorn & RISC OS Show in April.  It is now available through PlingStore, the online store for RISC OS applications.

The game is a 3D space shoot-em-up featuring 47 minutes of original music, including seven in game themes, original sound effects and graphics.

Released by Amcog Games, the author Anthony Bartram will tell ROUGOL members and visitors about the game design and the production of the graphics and music. He will also show key elements of the game code, the source of which is provided.

The meeting venue is upstairs in the Spice Lounge restaurant at the Blue Eyed Maid public house, 173 Borough High St, SE1 1HR.The meeting begins at 7:45pm (although lots of ROUGOL members are usually there – eating curry – from about 6pm!)  More meetings may be found here: ROUGOL Meetings 

There will be plenty of time to play the game. Can you defeat the Overlord?

ROUGOL logo

ROUGOL is a not-for-profit organisation consisting of RISC OS users in London and the south-east. Their aim is to bring those users together. There is no membership fee and entry to all meetings is free. To find out more, email them. or check out their website linked below.

MEETINGS

Meetings are held on the third Monday of every month. Most meetings feature a guest speaker, demonstrating the latest hardware or software, giving tutorials of software both new and old, or simply to kick off discussions on the current hot topic. Entrance is free, so why not come along and say hello?

LONDON SHOW

The next RISC OS London Show is on Saturday 24th October 2015. Visit the show website for more information.

For more about ROUGOL, check out their website: ROUGOL

 

 

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Museum of Computing bags award – thanks to volunteers!

The Museum of Computing's volunteers are always "game" for a laugh (pic Museum of Computing)
The Museum of Computing’s volunteers are always “game” for a laugh (pic Museum of Computing)

Mixing education and fun, the popular volunteer-run Museum of Computing in Swindon, England is a relaxed and friendly place for all involved.

But that’s not just the proud staff of the museum talking – reviews back this up and are the reason why the museum, based in Theatre Square, has just been awarded TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence Award 2015.

And what better way to celebrate national Volunteers’ Week, an annual event which takes place on 1-7 June and celebrates the contribution made by millions of volunteers across the UK?

Curator Simon Webb, of the Museum of Computing, proudly shows off their Certificate of Excellence (pic Museum of Computing)
Curator Simon Webb, of the Museum of Computing, proudly shows off their Certificate of Excellence (pic Museum of Computing)

Museum Curator, Simon Webb, says, “It helps that our volunteer team is a pretty diverse bunch. From college students to the retired, and from all corners of the globe, it’s great how our enthusiasm for all this cool stuff brings us together. Besides, we reckon we have more fun than the average museum!”

Volunteers are partial to a bit of Pacmania but aren't spooked by hard work either! (pic Museum of Computing)
Volunteers are partial to a bit of Pacmania but aren’t spooked by hard work either! (pic Museum of Computing)

And if you like the sound of joining their happy band of volunteers, why not get in touch?  The museum especially needs people who can help organise events, work at the front desk on Fridays, or be assistant volunteer co-ordinators.

As a volunteer, you can do normal museum work, from greeting visitors to setting up exhibitions, you could also dress up as a game character for events, play with Lego, Papercraft (like Minecraft but with scissors) and compete at retro video games with visitors, but only if you want as there’s no pressure.

Museum of Computing volunteers get up close and pixellated with Mario (pic Museum of Computing)
Museum of Computing volunteers get up close and pixellated with Mario (pic Museum of Computing)

As for the many visitors to the museum, few can resist getting hands-on in the ‘Pong to PlayStation’ gallery with three decades of gaming to enjoy.

For inspiration, active displays bring alive the story of computing together with artefacts ranging from pioneering pre-70s machines, to nostalgic home computers from the 80s and 90s plus hand-held toys, robots, calculators and other fascinating stuff.

The Museum of Computing offers a great escape from wet weather, and shopping, in Swindon’s town centre.  It is open on Fridays from 10am until 4pm and on Saturdays from 9.30am until 5pm.

For more details of the museum, check out their website: www.museumofcomputing.org.uk

And to find out about volunteering there,  email: nora@museumofcomputing.org.uk or call 07834 375628.

Seminal retro-games enter Video Game Hall of Fame

Doom
Doom

Seminal video game classics Doom and Pong have been inducted into the first Video Game Hall of Fame, as part of a project to find influential games begun in February by American museum of play ‘The Strong’.

Minecraft and Angry Birds, although finalists, didn’t make the cut but World of Warcraft, Pac-Man, Tetris and Super Mario Bros did.

The museum invited people to nominate video games played in all formats to be selected as iconic game-changers and the winners span thirty years of gaming between 1972 (Pong) to 2004 (W.O.W.).

Pong was an obvious choice because it effectively launched the video gaming industry, say the museum:

Pong (pic Wikipedia)
Pong (pic Wikipedia)

“By most measures of popular impact, Pong (1972) launched the video game industry. A simple game involving two paddles and a ball, Pong introduced millions to the joys of playing video games.

Although it was not the first electronic game, and the Magnavox Odyssey home console already featured a similar tennis game,Pong was the first game to grab wide-scale public attention. Its success propelled Atari into a preeminent role in the video game industry. Decades after its launch, Pong’s iconic sound, intuitive controls, and satisfying game play still resonate, inviting people to try their hand at keeping the ball bouncing as long as possible.”

Other games were chosen for becoming cultural icons (Tetris), making games a mass-market phenomenon (Pac-Man) and changing the way games were made (Doom).

Continue reading Seminal retro-games enter Video Game Hall of Fame

Computer-mad volunteers needed in Swindon!

Museum of Computing at Swindon
Museum of Computing at Swindon

It’s National Volunteers’ Week, and the award-winning Museum of Computing in Theatre Square, Swindon, England has appealed to people who can give up some time to help out.

It is open on Fridays from 10am until 4pm and on Saturdays from 9.30am until 5pm.

The museum traces the history of the computer from ingenious mechanical devices to compact machines from as recently as a few years ago.

Countless machines are on display and many can be used by visitors.

The same goes for its extensive stock of gaming machines, the earliest of which include ‘Pong’-style offerings, which thrilled a generation when they were released in the early 1970s.

The museum also runs computer clubs for people of all ages and organises regular events such as live action Pacman tournaments.

In a news item published this week by the Swindon Advertiser newspaper, museum spokesman Rob Leaney said roles included welcoming people at reception and helping catalogue the vast collection of computing items.

“We’re always on the look-out for anyone who can help us with everything from helping out with events, manning the front desk and cataloguing the collection, to a spot of cleaning,” he said.

“Whether people can help us out with their time, or just want to visit, we offer a friendly and interesting experience.”

The museum especially needs people who can help organise events, work at the front desk on Fridays or be assistant volunteer co-ordinators.

For more details and to apply via email nora@museumofcomputing.org.uk or call 07834 375628.

Arc-Aid returns to Cambridge!

Arc-Aid (pic Centre for Computing History)
Arc-Aid (pic Centre for Computing History)

Arcade enthusiasts and retro gamers are being invited to take part in a special event where they can have fun while finding out about some fabulous machines – and hopefully help bring them back to life!

After two previous great weekends of arcade machine tech talk, gaming and retro fun, the Centre for Computing History in Cambridge is all set to open its doors once again for another weekend meet-up and knowledge exchange later this month.

The latest ‘Arc-Aid: Cambridge’ event is being held at the Cambridge Computer Museum on Saturday 13th June (and following on to the Sunday 14th for those wishing to continue!) with the aim of bringing together members of the online arcade community to repair and restore some of the museum’s arcade machines.

Engineers from across the country will gather to open arcade cabinets, extract circuit boards, solder, prod and probe until the dulcet tones of arcade machines springing back to life fill the museum (waka-waka-waka!).

Arcade-centric talks will be held throughout the day and there’ll also be a special PCB workshop session for arcade community members. This will offer opportunities for practical knowledge exchange and members are invited to bring their own faulty games. Visitors to the museum will be able to view restoration work in progress and experience a selection of awesome arcade and pinball machines!

There were some successes at the last events and the museum is  hoping this will continue for the next one!

Ticket prices are as follows:

  • Adult £7.00
  • Child £5.00
  • Family (2 Adults, 2 Children) £20.00

Ticket prices are for the entire weekend. Keep your booking receipt for entry on both days.

Book online here: Arc-Aid (Part 3) Booking

For more information on the museum, visit their website: http://www.computinghistory.org.uk/

App-a-thon Guinness World Record attempt at TNMOC

Jill Clarke, TNMOC volunteer (pic TNMOC)
Jill Clarke, TNMOC volunteer (pic TNMOC)

The National Museum of Computing (TNMOC) is partnering BCSWomen to be a venue in the App-a-thon Guinness World Record attempt on Saturday 13 June 2015 from 10am to 4pm. The family fun day event, which is open to all, will be held at many venues across the UK. It aims to create a new world record and encourage girls to consider a career in IT. At each of the venues, participants will learn from women teachers how to build Android apps and there will be talks, activities and hands-on coding. Anyone can register now for their free place on this world record attempt, see: http://www.bcs.org/content/conEvent/9365

Jill Clarke, a TNMOC volunteer, member of BCSWomen and leader of the event at TNMOC, said: “This is a great way for everyone to learn about what goes into the making of an app, a feature of computing that most people use every day. We hope lots of people, especially families and girls from Milton Keynes and surrounding areas, will sign up to take part in the App-a-thon Guinness World Record attempt at The National Museum of Computing, the historic home of Colossus.”

Gillian Arnold, Chair of BCSWomen, said: “Within the IT profession, there is a real skills shortage in the UK that we need to address now. The BCSWomen App-a-thon event is a great way for lots of people to learn how to code at the same time, engage with those who are considering a career in IT and give every generation an opportunity to try their hand at coding. It is imperative that we encourage more women to enter the IT profession. Women and girls are massive users of technology however, they don’t realise they could be part of the profession that generates that technology. It’s a profession that women are good at. We just need to encourage more women to be part of it!”

Continue reading App-a-thon Guinness World Record attempt at TNMOC