II Something Issue # 12

II Something Magazine

Issue # 12
a weekly journal devoted to the Apple II family of computers
Sunday, January 14, 1996 – issue 12 – II.Smthg.960114


  • About…
  • Editor’s Greeting
  • Letters (well, letter)
  • The Editor’s Life In 1996
  • Does The Editor Still Watch Too Much TV? – videotapes
  • Webfind of the Week – UT Austin Map Database
  • The Wire Service – Super Bowl website
  • The Wire Service – Prodigy website
  • Updata – Internet subscriptions to II Something
  • Wish List – Driver Writer
  • Coming Next Week



As you know, Apple Computer, Inc. owns all of the Apple II computer copyrights and trademarks, including their names.

II Something is offered as freeware – copyright by Clark Hugh Stiles. Intact distribution of the entire file is acceptable using online services, including BBSes, or via user group DOMs provided there are no commercial sales. Individual articles may be reprinted in user group publications only, provided the following paragraph (except for the opening and closing quotes) is included at the beginning or end of the reprint:

“This article originally appeared in II Something, a weekly journal devoted to the Apple II family of computers, copyright by Clark Hugh Stiles. It has been reprinted by permission. All trademarked names and phrases mentioned belong to their respective owners. Send email to CHStiles@Delphi.Com or C.Stiles3@Genie.Com via the Internet, or newsletters, disks, products for review, gifts, or bribes to Clark Hugh Stiles, Box 46, Comstock Park, MI 49321-0046.”

Editor’s Greeting

Welcome to II Something. The tenth anniversary of the IIgs is less than eight months away and I’m still using an Apple IIgs.

Tenth anniversary? That’s something to celebrate. We could just gather at my house, order some pizza, crack open some beverages, eat and drink with one hand, stick the other down the fronts of our pants, and watch a Show Me slide show (no GIFs please, unless the machine is accelerated)…

…or, we could order about fifty pizzas from different vendors for delivery at Apple headquarters…one pizza for every model of Mac ever introduced…a touching tribute…I’m sure they can cover the expense of this prank out of petty cash…

This issue covers the Super Bowl (what, again?!?), wait until I’m finished, the Super Bowl website. And, you just passed the table of contents to get here.


Queue# Item From Length Sent Subject
1 2995537 A2.TONY 9 96/01/01 Long and short
2 6564931  BW.MILLER        49 96/01/03 Space and Science RoundTable 
3 3069942  N.CRAWFORD       14 96/01/03 sent you thee  Dec Applebyter


Item 3069942 96/01/03 23:21
From: N.CRAWFORD Nancy I. Crawford
To: C.STILES3 Clark Hugh Stiles
Sub: sent you the Dec Applebyter
Just for kicks, I printed up (mostly) a label with your address on it and sent you a sample of the Applebyter.. 'Tain't perfect; it never is, but there you go. It's 8 pages this month instead of the usual 6.
I must need to go to bed; I titled this Dec Abyter; meant January.
It's also full of advertisements; you know how the holidays go.
I can tell my coffee has worn off. Anyhow, you've got fair warning that it's coming.
Good night


I was gratified to see that II Something was mentioned (along with The Apple Blossom, no less) as #10 on the list of fifteen “Best Things to happen to the Apple II in 1996”. Thanks to you and to Ryan Suenaga (the author of the list). AppleByter is jammed full of great Apple II news. Looks like one of the oldest user groups in the country, as well (vol 17!). Thanks for sending the issue!

The Editor’s Life In 1996

A life? Yeah, I got one. Here’s my diary:

Monday, 1/8/96 – While taking a bath a few hours ago the phone rang. The call was for the Apple Users Group. The caller said he’d been given my number by the User Group Connection and apologized for calling me at home. His wife had been given “an Apple Eleven C” and needed a word processor. I suggested that he call Quality Computing for some software, and directed him to the 1-800-555-1212 to find out the toll free order line. After I hung up I laughed so hard I almost breathed in bathwater. After a while I wondered how many people have phones in their bathrooms.

I took off today just for the sake of consistency – this one will complete the chain of four consecutive Mondays off, the other three due to holidays. The original plan was to use this time off to clean – yeah, right. I’m not saying the house couldn’t use it, I’m saying I just don’t care.

I’m considering going to the new arboretum about which I’ve heard so much. The sun is out right now, I’ve rid myself of not one but two replacement window salesmen, and all I’m doing is wishing I could get on the Internet. Too expensive during prime time. May go through some seed catalogs. Hungry. May splurge and go to Olga’s for some eating on one of the coupons, since it’s a double coupon day.

Tuesday, 1/9/96 – Yesterday’s trip to the arboretum brought out the same feelings of childlike wonder I had when I visited Disneyworld for the first time many years ago. After the arboretum I went to Olga’s and had to send the first one back (the first time I’ve ever done that anywhere). Broke, and finding the teller machine at the movie mall (Studio 28) unwilling to dispense more cash, I was unable to spend time and money at the theater. Got groceries. Watched some tv, computed, read, went through the Seeds of Change catalog, and finally fell to sleep.

Work is overrated. I was tired all day today. I did a load of inquiries on the SOS link, and then my biweekly computer transactions.

Wednesday, 1/10/96 – Work is overrated. I was tired all day today. I did a load of inquiries on the SOS link, and then my biweekly computer transactions. Enjoyed the easy cut and paste capability of GS/OS based software when I got home.

Thursday, 1/11/96 – Payday. As the person who prepares and inputs the payroll, this is my least favorite day of the biweekly pay period. It went unusually well. Everyone who came into Personnel was in a pretty good mood. Had so much fun we almost got fired. We promised to try harder.

Just watched a Seinfeld syndicated rerun, Friends (rerun), Single Guy, Seinfeld (rerun), and Caroline In The City. Taped the first four of these. Dumped Caroline. The only interesting character on the show almost made his escape into a different set or a spinoff series but failed. Made me realize that the supporting cast is too good for the script or the lead. Too bad. Maybe it’s just a bad role for her.

Friday, 1/12/96 – Lots of last minute changes arrived. Nice. No one could have asked for this stuff yesterday? Who grades civil service tests? What kinds of questions do they ask? Is everyone on the same medication? Cleaned out some of the clutter in my cubicle. Monday will be a holiday. Had stupid questions on the phone all day (yes, there are such things as stupid questions).

X-files was a rerun and I didn’t like it the first time. DS9 was the conclusion of a two parter and both parts reeked. Maybe this will be the year I give up tv…

Saturday, 1/13/96 – Took a walk around Reeds Lake. Sun was out, temp was in the 40s or 50s. Realized about 7 PM that I hadn’t finished II Something. Had to pick the Webfind of the Week. Joked about not having finished II Something. Only I laughed. Something is terribly wrong.

Going to see Joel Mabus at the Folk Arts Society concert tonight. Got to pack the archive and upload it.

Does The Editor Still Watch Too Much TV? – videotapes

A few issues ago I mentioned my great love for Ken Burns’ “The Civil War” which appeared on PBS about a million times. I’ve watched my recently purchased copy of the videotapes more than halfway through volume five. My opinion of it remains that it is the best thing that has ever been televised (of course, most people have seen very little on tv other than Oprah, Opera, and OJ).

The January 1996 issue of Historic Traveler magazine has a brief synopsis of the battle of Fredericksburg that is more detailed than the treatment given in “The Civil War”, and viewers may wish to read that, particularly those interested in the substitute soldier phenomenon and the alleged ability of Ambrose Burnside. “The Civil War” is good to have on hand if you have older pre-teen children (for their education and edification) and is well worth the $99. Cancel cable tv for four months to finance the purchase.

“L.A. Story”, starring Steve Martin, was on the ‘very cheap’ display at Best Buy (that’s not the real label), and having enjoyed it in the theater, I got it. This is one of his better movies in that it has an actual, interesting plot, and is not just a 90 minute gag. “Father Of The Bride” is another of his good ones (its sequel is out right now, but I haven’t seen it). “L.A. Story” is nothing I would show a child, but is worth watching. Propeller heads may like the artificial intelligence aspect. X-Philes may like the very gentle reference to non-human guidance.

“Alien Autopsy: Fact or Fiction?” is a video containing the second version of the Fox presentation with Jonathan Frakes. After the show concludes, the entire footage of the autopsy is shown, complete with the reel breaks (the camera allegedly used to shoot the original had small reels), followed by a brief, uneventful view of some pieces of the alleged alien craft.

Those interested in the subject will find the $17 price tag (also at Best Buy) to be quite reasonable compared to some of the sources for the raw footage alone. Listen to the doctors’ opinion about the veracity of the procedures, and to the special effects wizards’ opinion about what is shown, as well as the experts’ opinion on the film stock and the type of camera used. Some of the criticism I’ve read concerning the footage has bordered on the irrational, but truthfully, I don’t know what to make of it. Stanton Friedman called it a fake, so it probably isn’t…

Webfind of the Week – UT Austin Map Database


The Perry-Castaqeda Library Map Collection at The University of Texas at Austin contains a couple of hundred thousand maps and many of the them are available for download as GIFs and JPeg files. I’d discovered the usefulness of the site’s maps (and the CIA database on nations and islands, discovered at the same time, listed below) a few weeks ago while floating around the virtual Pacific. If I recall correctly, this began with a failed attempt to contact the website for Islands magazine (to which I subscribe) followed by links listed in various ads in the same issue.

Using Show Me NDA I’ve viewed a half dozen or so, and the maps of Cyprus (eastern Mediterranean, in color) and Michigan (monochrome) were clear and sharp. Maps such as the one of Antarctica had details that were far too small to make out. Some of the maps are available as low density (those are generally 200K or less) or high density (1 MB or more), and I tried none of the high density ones. Presumably the higher density maps show more detail or are on a better scale. One GIF, called BLUE, is included in this archive.

Listed below are the http addresses for various subdirectories of the map collection. In the UT Austin homepage there are links to other map online resources such as an archive in Georgia (which wouldn’t connect with me for some reason, perhaps the address was incorrectly coded).

Also of interest is the Central Intelligence Agency World Factbook 1995, which has individual listings of every nation, territories, and US held islands and atolls, with a standard set of data for each entity listed. This was one of the earliest Internet sites and is visited by many net nuts. It is quite easy to use and handy to have around. By an odd coincidence, the Whole Internet calendar (see below) for January 10 had the C.I.A. World Factbook as its site (but at the old address).


There is a lot of information here. Add these to your list of favorite sites, or if you have a way to list them hierarchically, under “Reference”.

The Wire Service – Super Bowl website


This website must have been laid out with a graphical browser in mind, because there isn’t too much of interest here for CLI (command line interface) surfers like me. The only thing I found that I may use later is the name of the new Microsoft service.

As of game’s end Sunday 1/7/96, there were four possible matchups and four possible victors for the Super Bowl. Dallas or Green Bay will meet Pittsburgh or Indianapolis. Dallas is favored, but listening to its players talk after the game with Philadelphia, I don’t think they believe they can beat Green Bay, whereas Green Bay’s QB and other players seem to be very much looking ahead. Pittsburgh is favored over Indianapolis, and I haven’t heard any of their players talk, except that Indy’s QB had almost the same words as the GB QB (this is fun) – no one expected them to be there, they’ve got nothing to lose, just want to play their best, have fun, and win.

Let’s see… if Green Bay beats home team Dallas, and Indy beats Pittsburgh, we could have an interesting Super Bowl (most of them have been lopsided and boring, especially since Dallas, Miami, San Francisco, and Pittsburgh have won so many). I doubt that Dallas can win this year regardless of who they have to play. So let’s play paper scissors stone…

Green Bay beats Indianapolis (battle of the defenses, Indy has no offense) Indianapolis beats Dallas (strictly scoring on turnovers, Dallas unable to score) Pittsburgh beats Dallas (Dallas unable to score, low scoring game, maybe FGs) Pittsburgh beats Green Bay (GB barely beat an under-motivated Pittsburgh at season’s end)

Honestly, Indianapolis doesn’t seem like it can be for real. It just is. Kansas had the best record but Indy beat them because Indy has beaten most of the best of the NFL. Also, Kansas’ record wasn’t as good as its numbers. Still, most say it will be Pittsburgh versus Dallas. I think it is a toss up for both divisional championships. As a former fan of the Detroit LieDowns, I’d prefer to see Green Bay win it all, since it is the Black ‘n’ Blue division representative.

Wasn’t that much better than visiting the real website? By the time you read this, these contests will be decided. Sorry for the inconvenience.

The Wire Service – The Whole Internet Calendar

I bought one of those ‘page-a-day’ calendars from Workman Publishing with the intent of using it for a Christmas present. Merry Christmas to me. I also have two leftover Far Side daily calendars. Not good.

The Whole Internet Calendar may be a good thing to have. Some of the entries are for very interesting (sounding) sites, and if the site turns out to have moved, Internet users can send email to update@workman.com for the corrected address. Some of the calendar entries are just glossary items, and others are places that don’t sound too thrilling. I’m already up to January 19th.

The best guides to the Internet are online, and even they contain links which are out of date. Some sites claim that the books published as Internet guides actually use them to compile the data. I don’t doubt that authors visit places like Scott Yanoff’s, Yahoo!, WebCrawler, and other major crossroad sites and online search engines. How else could the data be compiled?

This calendar is probably worth having, especially since it will get clearanced out this month. I got this copy for $4.98 at Sam’s Club, so if there are any left, it’s probably less than $4 now. There may also be an online order source at http://gnn.com/ora/ or http://www.ora.com, so look there.

The Wire Service – Prodigy website


Prodigy has a pretty clear layout considering the number of links off the homepage. If you choose the option to look at selected homepages, you will then be able to access all the public homepages (which may be all the user homepages on Prodigy), searchable (using one of their search engines, if you’ve got a graphical websurfer frontend) by state, nation (Canada, for example), and some other ways. Just keep burrowing in until you find the one you want. I presume that those who able to use the search engines offered can find by subject, so that homepages for individual musical artists or groups, academic interest, or the like, can be found. In my experience, Prodigy offers better access to user homepages than AOL.

My friend Mike (of M & Jodi, the vegetarians, see earlier issues) is on Prodigy and has mentioned the possibility of making a homepage for Del Shannon (cowriter and original performer of old classics such as “Runaway”, real name was Charles Westover, grew up in the same small town as Mike and me). I checked to see if he’d done it. Took forever. He hadn’t. It’s nice to know that I would be able to access it if he did.

Prodigy’s website is worth a look.

Updata – Internet subscriptions to II Something

If you obtain II Something from a source other than GEnie or Delphi, and
have an email account on the Internet, send email to me and I can add you to the experimental subscription list. If this works well, you’ll be receiving II Something with peculiar extra line breaks before the rest of the II world can download it. You’ll be the envy of your friends and associates, although you won’t get any non-text files that they may find in the downloaded archives.

Please note that this is an experiment and that I want to find out how well it works and how many people are interested. I’m limited to 10 MB of Internet transfers per month on Delphi. That used to seem like a lot. Those were the days.

Wish List – Driver Writer

It would be very nice to have a GS/OS program that did nothing but produce drivers for various peripherals (modems, printers, interface cards, drives), beginning with the user options (what kind, and whether to customize one of the listed models or to start from scratch). As the years go on this will be of increasing importance.

Coming Next Week

The Website of the Week could be anything, I just don’t know. Perhaps I’ll use my next day off to produce something besides Internet chatter for you. I’ve been trying out some foreign sites, some very odd sites, and some commercial sites. Look for that at the very least.


II Infinitum

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About the Author

Clark Hugh Stiles

Welcome to II Something. It’s October 1995 and I’m still using an Apple IIgs. What am I missing? The newest machines use CRT screens (preferred, even with laptops except when actually used on the lap), keyboards, mice, and sound to implement an interface with the user. Hard drives are used for primary storage and boot volumes, while CD-ROMs are used to hold larger data files, and floppy and tape drives are used for current data and backup for the hard drives. Modems are used for communication with mainframes. These features have not changed in years; most of them have not changed in decade.