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Evan KoblentzThis month on Open Apple, Mike and Ken chat with Evan Koblentz, producer of Vintage Computer Festival East. VCF East 9.1 is happening this spring, and Evan has an inside look at the event's founding, growth, and lineup. Margot Comstock has been announced as the keynote speaker of KansasFest 2014, prompting us to reflect on the history of Softalk magazine. The Apple2pi card is now shipping, and it reminds us of other small devices that left a big impression, like the Replica-1 and even the Apple Newton PDA — which still has an active user group! Finally, Steve Jobs is appearing in all kinds of icons, from e-waste portraits to unlickable postage stamps. When will Woz get the recognition he deserves?

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Sean FaheyThis month on Open Apple, Mike and Ken chat with Sean Fahey, proprietor of A2Central.com and KansasFest committee member. Sean and James Littlejohn distribute a plethora of Apple II hardware and software every year to KansasFest attendees, and next year's haul will be bigger than ever — we have the details why. Glenn Jones is working on a new Uthernet card, and we can't wait to see what new software it makes possible. The Mac turned thirty years old last month, and we reminisce about the first time we added a non-Apple II Apple to our inventory. Madden NFL, the football game that got its start on the Apple II, is the subject of both preservation and litigation — but we'd rather be playing Silvern Castle.

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Open Apple roundtable 2013's panelistsAt the dawn of 2014, Open Apple engages in its annual tradition of reflecting on all that has transpired in the Apple II community in the past year. Ken Gagne moderates a panel of Mike Maginnis, Andy Molloy, Ivan Drucker, and David Schmenk to look at topics in news, emulation, hardware, software, conventions, and publications. Popular themes include the Raspberry Pi, the S-Prize, social media, JSMESS, the Jobs film, and KansasFest 2013.

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Interactive Fiction CompetitionThis month on Open Apple, Mike and Ken chat with Andrew Schultz — gamer, FAQ author, and Interactive Fiction Competition participant. Text adventures are enjoying a resurgence in popularity and access, and Andrew guides us through the tools and resources available for aspiring game authors. Both Steve Weyhrich's history book and the Steve Jobs movie are available for home delivery, but there's only one we want to find under our Christmas tree. Jason Scott has integrated the JSMESS emulator into the Internet Archive, granting users unprecedented access to historical software right in their browsers. Finally, Ken, in his quest to be more Woz-like, adopts his hero's fashion sense.

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Bill MartensThis month on Open Apple, Mike and Ken chat with Bill Martens of Call-A.P.P.L.E. Preserving our community's software and documentation is important not just to the users, but to the people doing the preserving; Bill explains why. We look at how the media can never get enough of Steve Jobs, examining his early career and denoting his boyhood home as a historical landmark — but Woz gets his time in the spotlight too, on panels about Atari, the Jobs movie, or a Homebrew Computer Club reunion. Highlighted eBay auctions include the ten rarest and most expensive games and yet another Apple-1. Finally, Brian Wiser joins us to discuss The WOZPAK Special Edition, a book that made its debut at KansasFest 2013 alongside its creator, Steve Wozniak.

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Send voicemail to Open Apple

Open Apple is an audio podcast. We don't have readers; we have listeners. We're always thrilled to hear from our listeners via any medium, but it doesn't seem fair to ask you to shift gears to write an email in response to what you heard.

That's why you can now send audio feedback to Open Apple right from our website. Just click the send voicemail button to the right, and if your computer has an inbuilt microphone and JavaScript enabled, you'll be prompted to start recording. You can listen to and re-record your message before submitting it, if you like. Open Apple will then have the option of replying to your message via private voicemail, or playing your message on the air during our next episode.

We look forward to hearing from you — literally!

Brendan RobertThis month on Open Apple, Mike and Ken chat with Brendan Robert of the Java Apple Computer Emulator (JACE) and Apple Game Server.Innovative cross-platform tools are being used to bring Lawless Legends, an original 8-bit RPG, to the Apple II and Commodore 64; as part of the programming team, Brendan takes us behind the scenes. He lives in a lawless land himself — the Old West of Texas, where gaming icons Ion Storm, Zynga, Lord British, Rooster Teeth reside. But when it comes to games, sometimes you can't do better than Tetris, of which there are many new and devious deviations. We get rid of old toys, like a SCSI CD-ROM 7-disc changer and a LANceGS card, so we can all have room for new toys, like A2CLOUD, Apple2Pi, BenchmarkeD, AppleIIWorks Envoy, and Final Cut Pro X. And sadly, Wayne Green of InCider and Byte has passed away; we remember his magazines fondly.

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Charles Mangin's Apple IIe newsletter signup station

In July 2011, Ryan Vesler of retail store Homage found the site Apple II Bits and contacted its owner, Open Apple co-host Ken Gagne with a request:

I have a retail store in Columbus that sells classic t-shirts with
nostalgic artwork.

I would like to build some kind of Apple II looking computer that
collects email address for our mailing list (and maybe allows people
to sign up for a free prize pack)

Thinking about having some kind of Mac Mini operate inside an old
shell.  I was wondering if you would be interested in working with us.
We could price something out and see if it's worth your while…

Ken put Ryan in touch with Charles Mangin, about whom Ken had blogged back in 2010. Years later, on the September 2013 episode of Open Apple, Charles related the product of the resulting collaboration.

Charles did indeed embed a Mac mini inside an Apple IIe for Ryan's store in Columbus, Ohio. The display screen for signing up for Homage's newsletter, though powered by a Mac mini, is designed to look like it belongs on the green phosphor screen. It fits right in with the store's variety of nostalgic memorabilia, from an NBA Jam arcade cabinet to a Hulk Hogan cardboard standup.

Photos are courtesy Ryan; see more shots of his store at Columbus Underground.

Nice work to all parties involved in reminding the the public of Apple's roots!

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