Category Archives: Retro Computing News

Retro Computing News to close

Sad Mac

Due to increasing personal health issues this year, and commitments as sole carer of my elderly, disabled mother, I have reluctantly decided to close Retro Computing News, effective immediately, as I no longer feel able to do it justice.

That doesn’t mean the site will disappear; it will remain online as a hopefully still useful, if outdated, retro resource. It will simply not be updated in future. The Facebook page will also remain.

I hope to continue writing on retro topics occasionally, and have a couple of other current writing commitments which I am aiming to complete before taking a long rest. Hopefully I will be able to do other things like this in future, but not for some time I think.

Thank you, dear readers and followers, for your interest over the years. Running this site has been a pleasure, and I have met many wonderful people as a result.

Sincerely,

Stuart Williams

Editor & Publisher

 

Live from Recursion 2017!

Recursion 2017 - The Levi Fox Hall, King Edward VI School
Recursion 2017 – The Levi Fox Hall, King Edward VI School

Today we’re at the Recursion 2017 computer science fair, which is held every year at King Edward VI School in Stratford-upon-Avon, England. And this post is being edited and uploaded live from the fair!

Apart from having a great affinity with educational computing the school just happens to be the school which William Shakespeare studied at in his early years!

The Retro Computing News table at Recursion 2017
The Retro Computing News table at Recursion 2017

Apart from the cracking educational computing and maker exhibits at Recursion, there’s a fantastic range of exhibits and activities for retro gaming and retro computing fans.

In fact, this post is being typed in between the Retro Computing Museum section and a load of other retro displays, anything from Acorn to Amiga, Sinclair to Commodore or AROS to RISCOS. There’s even a digital planetarium, robotics and much more!

For more posts today, watch our social media:

https://www.facebook.com/retrocompnews

We might even have a spot of Facebook Live video…

We’d like to thank King Edward VI School and event organizer Richard Barfoot for the invitation to have a table here, what a great event this is!

For more information about Recursion 2017 and the school, follow this link:  http://www.recursioncomputerfair.co.uk/index.html

WE’LL BE BACK!

Terminator bitmap image

Good news! We are pleased to announce that Retro Computing News (RCN) will be officially reactivated in January 2017 – and we’ll be ramping up our coverage over the next twelve months, so watch this space for some of our best work yet!

Editor and publisher Stuart Williams put the magazine site into effective hibernation earlier this year due to personal and family health issues and resulting time constraints, but now plans to kick-start RCN back into action after the festive apocalypse is over.

Stuart said “After a pretty rough year, I’m finally getting into a position to be able to devote the time that Retro Computing News deserves once more, and just as soon as I’ve loaded up the minigun with sprouts and terminated a turkey or two I’ll be back behind the controls again.

“Meanwhile, watch out for the odd festive missile or temporal displacement grenade being hurled out from behind the barricades. Not the least of which being, may I take this opportunity to wish all of our readers past, present – and of course, future – a very MERRY CHRISTMAS, or Happy Holidays if you’re on the other side of the pond!”

If you have any news you’d like us to cover or events to publicise, please get in touch via the Contact page or press releases, photos etc can be sent direct via:  retrocomputingnews@gmail.com

END OF LINE.

RCN to exhibit in Shakespeare country

King Edward VI School
King Edward VI School

For the second year running, Retro Computing News will be attending the Recursion computer fair on Saturday 2 July 2016 in Stratford-upon-Avon, England.

But this time around, we’ll be an exhibitor – at William Shakespeare’s very own school!

RECURSION 2015  from above - general view
RECURSION 2015 from above – general view

We’ve been invited along by the event organisers at the historic King Edward Vi School, where the legendary English playwright was educated, and will have a table in the ‘history of computing’ section (see below) of this fantastic, free and fun-packed digital day out dedicated to computer science and computing in education, industry and leisure.

The Levi Fox Hall, King Edward Vi School
The Levi Fox Hall, King Edward Vi School

Last year, over 500 students, parents and members of the public visited the fair in the Levi Fox Hall of the school, and the organisers are looking to expand the range of exhibits and activities further this year. There will be stands from local businesses, universities and other schools. A number of stands and activities will make use of small-board computers such as the Raspberry Pi, Micro:Bit and Arduino.

At Recursion 2015, Tom Williamson showed off his historic BBC Micro's as well as his self-built Ident computer case containing a Raspberry Pi
At Recursion 2015, Tom Williamson showed off his historic BBC Micro’s as well as his self-built Ident computer case containing a Raspberry Pi
History of computing
Andy Spencer (right) and his Retro Computer Museum team at Recursion 2015
Andy Spencer (right) and his Retro Computer Museum team at Recursion 2015

In addition, the fair will offer a community-led ‘history of computing’ section, where local user groups and aficionados of “classic” and “retro” computing can get together and share their passion for everything from a ZX80 to an Amiga 1200.

Those attending Recursion 2015 were rewarded with a buzzing, vibrant and diverse event for computer fans of all interests, not only gaming, with a great retro component.  This year’s fair, which opens at 11am, promises to be an equally exciting event and one that should both promote and celebrate the industry and enthuse the next generation of British Computer Scientists and Engineers.

See you there?

Recursion is a show of a kind which has been rarely seen since the 1990s, and we’re only too delighted to give it our full support!  Retro Computing News’s editor and publisher, Stuart Williams, will be setting out our stall at Recursion 2016, and will be there to talk to any and everyone about our magazine site and retro computing in general, as well as covering the event for RCN.

A 360 degree panorama from a corner of the hall in 2015 - click to enlarge
A 360 degree panorama from a corner of the hall in 2015 – click to enlarge

As we receive more detailed information about this year’s fair, we’ll pass it on in these pages, meanwhile, why not check out our feature on Recursion 2015 to get an idea of what you can look forward to?

See:  https://retrocomputingnews.com/2015/07/07/recursion-2015-repeats-success-in-stratford/

For more info as it is posted, also see the event website:

http://www.recursioncomputerfair.co.uk/

WE HOPE TO SEE YOU THERE!

RCN sponsors REVIVAL Solstice 2016 in Walsall

RCN sponsorship banner

We’re delighted to confirm that Retro Computing News is sponsoring the upcoming REVIVAL Solstice 2016 retro gaming, retro computing and arcade show in Walsall, England! Taking place over 30-31 July 2016, the event sees REVIVAL back at its big event best, with a huge range of gaming and computing plus dealers, competitions and special guest talks.  Moreover this year, the big show, previously held at Wolverhampton Racecourse, is moving to Bescot Stadium, aka Banks’s Stadium, the home of Walsall Football Club, which is easily accessible by road and by railway, with its own station nearby!

We’ll also be covering the event, and taking a table there so our editor and publisher Stuart Williams can chat to anyone who’d like to know more about our online magazine and maybe give us their own news for possible publication!

Retro goodies sprouting in the arcade hall at REVIVAL 2014
Retro goodies sprouting in the arcade hall at REVIVAL 2014
Speccy sponsorship

More good news for anyone attending is that we’re sponsoring this fantastic event by providing a classic Sinclair ZX Spectrum +3 home games computer as a prize for one of the many retrogaming competitions that will be taking place over the weekend!

REVIVAL is the largest and best true dedicated retrogaming event in the UK, and their return to large scale is definitely the one you won’t want to miss!

Arcade days all over again at REVIVAL 2014!
Arcade days all over again at REVIVAL 2014!
What’s happenin’

The show is now filling to the rafters, says organiser Craig Turner of Turnarcades fame, with all the best retro gaming exhibits you love, and plenty more besides! Solstice 2016 will have:

  • 35+ arcade machines
  • 15+ pinball machines
  • 100+ playable consoles and computers
  • Retro Asylum’s talks arena and gamer’s theatre
  • Special guest appearances with live Q+A sessions
  • The Retro Lords’ stage show and competition area
  • A great selection of retro related traders and exhibitors
  • Retro Gaming Roundup’s retro gaming lounge
  • The Dreamcast Junkyard’s Sega zone
  • The ‘Cutting Room Floor’ zone, filled with playable rare/unreleased/prototype systems and games
  • Large screen, multiplayer gaming setups
  • Portable gaming zone, featuring handhelds to tabletop curiosities
  • Homebrew retrogaming development showcases
  • Fully licenced bar and pinball cafe
  • Early admission and discounted traders for REVIVAL membership card holders
  • Late opening for exhibitors and membership card holders
The hunt is on for that retro holy grail at REVIVAL 2014...
The hunt is on for that retro holy grail at REVIVAL 2014
Guest announcements

REVIVAL are about to start full public advertising and will also be announcing their confirmed guests in the coming weeks, so be sure to grab your tickets and book the best hotels NOW before they all go! It’s going to be an amazing weekend with the much-loved REVIVAL atmosphere, so make sure you get along to this one!

Just part of the 2015 REVIVAL Winter Warmer
Just part of the 2015 REVIVAL Winter Warmer
Poster

Download the poster in jpeg format by clicking on this image:

REVIVAL Solstice 2016 poster
Click on image for larger version
Event tickets

Buy your tickets and membership cards here while you still can:

https://www.tickettailor.com/ch…/view-event/…/47596/chk/069b

More details

For further info, visit the REVIVAL website and to keep up with the latest announcements, why not Like their Facebook page, as well as the show’s dedicated Facebook event page now!

WE HOPE TO SEE YOU THERE!

Booting Up 2016

Booting Up 2016

I thought I’d just make a quick post to let all our readers know that I’ve been looking at how Retro Computing News (RCN) can move onward and upward now we’ve hit the first few days of 2016.

We are of course going to continue with the usual topical mix of news and features, but you’re also going to see some specific upgrades to our coverage:

Museum Micro-Scope – we’re going to do more in-depth features on museums and other places of interest to retro computing fans.  And we’ll get around to visiting as many UK establishments as we can in 2016! Look for a first quarter feature on the Retro Computer Museum in Leicester to begin with, all being well.

NewsBytes – short snippets of timely news as we come across them. This is already supported by our Facebook and Twitter feeds, but we’ll be on the look out for more news in brief that won’t take so long to hit the pages of RCN. NewsBytes will also include more coverage of interest to gamers!

Retro Rewind – features on past hardware including computers and accessories.

Comms Capers – a look back at the ‘good old days’ of communications before public access to the internet, including Bulletin Boards and Prestel – plus a look forward to where you can still find BBS’s online today.

Retro-Active Reviews – we’re keen to review new hardware, software and books which are relevant to retro computing. So if you’re a company, publisher, indie developer or author looking to get the word out, we may be able to help you!

Random Access Memories – were going to be looking for individual people’s memories of their computing past from back in the day.

END OF LINE – editorial pieces where we come across something interesting, evocative, memorable, exciting or controversial – or news about where we’re going with RCN.

All of this is going to take time to kick in, so please be patient as we boot up 2016!

Stuart Williams

END OF LINE

Rebooting RCN…

Asleep at the computer

Some of our readers will have been wondering why Retro Computing News has been so quiet over the past few months. Well, I want to apologise sincerely for this.

The fact is, I have been ill. I won’t go  too much into the details, but because of this illness, I have been extremely tired most of the time, sometimes falling asleep at my desk or in meetings, and once coming close to collapse.  Advised to rest, I’ve had to put a hold on active working on RCN for most of the past few months, apart from occasional forays into social media via my smartphone.

There is now a light at the end of the tunnel, however.  I have recently been taking a course of injections to try and get me back into action, and these seem to be having some effect at long last, so I am hopeful, but I expect to be taking them indefinitely.

In any case, although things are still a bit of a struggle for me, over the next few months I am going to try to get RCN and my blog Amiga Meditations rebooted and back in action, so I hope you will stick with me.  You’ll start seeing changes and new posts this week.

Thanks for your patience, and again, apologies.

Watch this space!

Stuart Williams

Editor and Publisher