II Something Issue # 3

II Something Magazine

Issue # 3
a weekly journal devoted to the Apple II family of computers
Sunday, November 12, 1995 – issue 3 – II.Smthg.951112


  • Editor’s Greeting
  • Does The Editor Have A Life? – continued
  • Do It In Hardware – APS 270MB Syquest update
  • The Wire Service – Webfind of the Week – GS Ezine
  • The Wire Service – My Personal Favorites – continued
  • The Wire Service – Do It In Hardware – continued
  • Multimedia – CDROM is more than a job… – continued
  • Airware – Desktop BASIC for the GS – Progress Report
  • Ouch! – Jargon, Slang, & Faces
  • Wish List – drag and drop


Next Week! – 11/19/95


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. It’s November 1995 and I’m still using an Apple IIgs.
During the session in which I uploaded the 11/5/95 issue I emailed a request to betatest Jasmine. Haven’t heard back yet. The table of contents debuted in issue 2 to make it easier to determine where to read.
Beginning with this issue I plan to go into more detail about one Internet site (Web or not) per week. This week’s consists of a press release concerning a GS-oriented online publication called GS Worldview. Next week I hope to have a review of that, plus the site of the week. If I get the review done and it’s very large I may put that up as a download, sort of a sneak preview. Many Websites are operated by commercial entities, but have tons of freebies. Both GEnie and Delphi have public Websites, and I access the GEnie Website from Delphi. As soon as I get Internetting over on GEnie, I plan to do the same for Delphi’s website.
In case you’ve wondered, II Something is a one person operation. Luckily I type fast and can BS my way out of almost problem, or you would notice the almost complete lack of content. As I see it here in week three, II Something will become an Apple II resource for the Internet, mostly dealing with overviews and reviews of various sites. The print media can’t keep up with the Internet, and readers can’t keep up with the print media magazines about the Internet. Just counting them can take a few minutes if you have to hunt through a good sized newstand.
Another focus of II Something will be CDROM. There is a lot of crap on CDROM, which is not surprising, but there are publications that sift through the CDROMs which are available, and sifting through those is not that hard. With the advent of cheap (under $1000) CDROM burner drives, the number of CDROM titles and the over cost of blank media will move in opposite directions. The day when we can build our own CDROMs at home is almost here.
Please send me anything you know or any kind of feedback about anything you read here. I may or may not print it, but regardless, submissions become my property to use as I see fit, subject to my own editing.

Does The Editor Have A Life? – continued

You decide. This house has a lot of clutter. I’m in a spare bedroom (it’s a two bedroom house). It has a single corner style desk with two IIgs systems and an IW2, plus a couple of clamp on boom style lamps. Also in here is the tv and related parts, a beanbag, some shelves attached to the wall, a bunch of computer mags, books, and manuals on the shelves, a stool, an ergonomic computer chair (it was cheap at Sam’s Club), and a coat rack I had to move in here when I got some appliances that were bigger than the old ones. Yes, that means I had a coat rack in my kitchen.
My very old, cheap waterbed fell apart in August. In a fit of pique I took it apart and went out to get a new one. The new one is not quite assembled, although it is getting closer all the time. The bedroom has the bed, a bunch of tools, a dehumidifier, nightstand and lamp, dresser covered with books, and bookshelves attached to two walls. The living room has a couch and loveseat I’ve had since 1981. They’re in good shape despite the fact that I’ve been sleeping on the couch since the bed fell apart and have been using both as a general dumping ground for over a decade.
The small clutter throughout the house is really overwhelming. There are stacks of books, boxes of stuff (like Christmas presents I’ve been accumulating for the 1995 season), piles of diskette boxes, magazines, catalogs, and general debris. Oddly enough, I’m pretty good about certain basic things – I do laundry and dishes pretty regularly. I’m pretty oriented toward food as you know, so I do cook. I don’t have pets, primarily because of my breathing, but also because I’m afraid I might lose them in an avalanche or they’ll just burrow in somewhere and suffocate.
A year and a half ago I drilled and cut walls to string in phone and coax jacks. One place that needed a phone jack was the bath corridor (it has a door, but it can’t be called a room). I put a two line jack in the computer corner, and a combination coax and phone jack in the tv corner and in the real bedroom. The final plan is to have a couple of combo jacks in the living room, a couple of phone jacks in the kitchen, another combo jack in the real bedroom, possibly another here in the spare room, and several of each in the someday-to-be-finished parts of the full basement.
I try to exercise, but winter is at hand and outdoor exercise is more challenging. It seems that I’ve been sick off and on since Veteran’s Day 1994 (i.e., for a year), and that really sucks. Earlier today I met a friend for a walk around a lake that lies on the outskirts of the city (one end is a small town, the rest is very expensive suburb, lots of fairly wild or rural places). I need to find some job prospects in a better climate. Looking back I wish I’d bought some hovel in or near Grand Haven, Michigan (40 miles west, and right on Lake Michigan). Moving is something I would do with reluctance, because I’m not just some suburban housekid. I’ve lived in three apartments (1981 – 1985), and I’ve owned this house since late 1985.
My ancestors settled the place where I grew up (I’m from the third generation raised on that spot, and from the first generation born in a hospital), and my family has lived there since 1851. Before the current place they’d lived across the street (before the street was there) since sometime in the 1840s. Some great-great uncles and aunts also settled there and some of their descendants are still around, including one family that is similarly persisting in the same homestead. All the old families in the area can trace their ancestry to a few large families, and even families who are mostly “recent” probably married into the line. I find out about a few “new” cousins every year.
My dream house would be some old stone house located on a small, unshared island. I’d put up a couple of windmill power generators, a small tv dish, put in a garden and a greenhouse, and spend all my time raising vegetables and writing. I would want the island to be in an acceptable climate, but can’t give you much of an idea what constitutes “acceptable”.
So, I guess you’ll have to conclude that the editor has a life, but it’s mostly a fantasy life. On the other hand, you’ve just spent your time reading about my life, so maybe you need to get one, or it could be that I’m a captivating writer.

Do It In Hardware – APS 270MB Syquest update

As noted in the 11/5/95 issue, APS, a SCSI hard drive manufacturer, is closing out its 270MB Syquest based model for $229.95. Although this could indicate that Syquest is discontinuing the 270MB system, the only slightly cheaper EZ Drive holds but 135MB. The cartridges are very similar, but the systems are incompatible. Perhaps this means there is a new 270MB system on the way. That could mean a continued demand for the 270MB cartridges, and if they benefit from the economy of scale of the EZ Drive cartridges, it could mean lower prices.
MacZone has the EZ Drive for $199.95, the same price as the Iomega Zip Drive. My plan for today (observation of Veteran’s Day, a state employee holiday) is to check Best Buy and a few other places (Computer Warehouse, AMS, Computer City if it’s ready for business, MediaPlay, etcetera) to find out about local availability and prices. AMS has not got back to me about the Zip Drive, which ticks me off. Best Buy seems to have them in stock and gets them special order without trouble.
Removable media drives are nice. I’ve used this 44MB Syquest since 1991 (or was it 1990?) without any trouble from it. One thing I’ve considered is backing up the four cartridges I have, backing up the fixed drive, and then buying a big internal or two to put in the case(s). The 44MB Syquest and the scroggy old fixed drive would then go into the “Extras” menu in my closet. At that point it would become simpler to back up all the floppy disks (overwhelmingly 3.5″) that litter this house, and begin to use them for coasters or whatever. I could sell them for some tip money.
I have done one of my budgets and plan to act in the next week. I hope to have the final update to this story in the 11/19/95 issue (#4).

The Wire Service – Webfind of the Week – GS Ezine

I found this press release on the Web somewhere, maybe in some link off Joe Kohn’s Shareware Solutions II homepage…

New (FreeWare) GS EZine – Release Notice From: Date: 30 Oct 1995 21:04:31 GMT (Page 1 of 2)
I’d mentioned to several people via email and (I think) with a general post to a few news groups, that I was developing for release (originally on 10-31-95) the first of its kind, a freeware GS EZine ‘GS WorldView’. The release date has been changed to 11-7-95. You can all find it then, available as both; html document format, with graphics and also as text only, posted to all A2 ftp sites, as well as on our 1WSW-CA web site, available via direct URL access, (that URL direct access – to be announced later on this week – on our 1WSW-CA Home Page html update). A graphic review and content outline ‘promo’ html page – will be available for viewing by all, later on this afternoon. I’m sorry for the delay in its release. I’m still waiting for some contributions to be sent to me for inclusions. I’ve also got a few new additions planned, that should really impress and amaze the GS world, when they see them, read them and listen to them.
Should you care to visit and review the ‘GS WorldView’ EZine Promo html page document, you can find it after 3PM (PST) today, 10-30-95 at the following URL.


Be sure to check it out then.

Charles Turley

[ editor’s note: I couldn’t establish a link when I tried this site. ]

The Wire Service – My Personal Favorites – continued

This is just my current list of the personal favorites I’ve saved while Internetting via Lynx on Delphi. Some wacky stuff here. I haven’t figured out how to delete some that I’ve tired of (like the Unabomber Manisfesto, which is now available on GEnie’s A2 files area). It probably requires something really arcane, like “DELETE n”. This list was alphabetized in the AppleWorks DB module, then re-alphabetized by me (things that started with “The” or something irrelevant skewed the results). I’ve found that when I go to the menu where I can type any URL, I can leave off the “http://” and just type in the site. Lynx figures out the rest.
Some of these sites are home to various Web players. Dancer is a site for a web host/web navigator system programmed in Python, which is one of the languages on the “Alternative Programming Languages” CDROM discussed in the 11/5/95 issue. Dancer is a work in progress, and source code is available in a TAR.GZ archive. CERN is the site of the origin of the Web. The Grail, W3C Source Code, Mosaic, tkWWW, and SurfIt! are also in this category. I’ve been tracking down sites that have Web- or Internet-related source code that may be of use to Apple II users and programmers.
The Nova Scotia UG I mentioned in the 11/5/95 issue appears as the second and third entries on the list below. Each entry consists of two lines. Some entries (like the GS Ezine, which has two) don’t have very revealing titles. If you try any of these sites be warned that things on the Internet move around all the time. Although everything on this list worked that last time I tried access, it may not work at this point.
Some of these sites were pointed out in Shareware Solutions II, the excellent bimonthly newsletter by Joe Kohn. Some of the others were discovered due to links in the SSII homepage. The Nova Scotia site is a menu item in Delphi’s Internet section of the Apple II area. Strange Magazine lists its site in its twice a year magazine. Some others were found in that way or in books. Others were found while wandering or searching. I’d tell you how I found each one, but I just can’t be sure about some of them at this point.

Name=All-Internet Computer Directory: Internet Access Providers

Name=Apple GS Directories (Nova Scotia UG)

Name=Apple II & GS Download Area (Nova Scotia UG)

Name=APS Technologies (hard drive company)

Name=Argus/University of Michigan Clearinghouse

Name=Welcome to Britannica Online (a beta service scheduled for termination)

Name=CERN HTTP server status

Name=CNN Interactive (yes, Cable News Network)

Name=The Conspiracy Pages (best of worldwide paranoia)

Name=Dancer WWW Client

Name=Diversified Software Research Flier (remember Diversi-Tune?)

Name=Doc’s Strange Page (links to odd places)

Name=Eckankar (sect based on the practice of one of the kinds of Yoga)

Name=FOX Specials: Alien Autopsy

Name=GEnie Services Home Page

Name=Welcome to GNN

Name=The Grail Browser Home Page

Name=Index of /~3d5d1wsw/ (some wacky links, as well as…)

Name=index.html (…the site of GS Worldview)

Name=InTrec Home Page (publishers of ProTerm and ProTerm Mac)

Name=What’s New With NCSA Mosaic

Name=Netizens (nothing but personal homepages)

Name=The Nine Planets (information and theories about the Solar System)

Name=OSF Home Page

Name=PIPEX Worldserver (supposed to have an Incredible String Band

Name=Scantron Quality Computers Home Page (formerly QC and Q-Labs)

Name=Seven Hills Software catalog

Name=Shareware Solutions II

Name=Softdisk G-S

Name=Index of /strangemag (Strange, my favorite magazine)

Name=Sun Remarketing Inc. (used Apple gear)


Name=tkWWW (programming tools)

Name=Transhuman Contact in Vedic Civilization WWW/Web (UFO/aliens)
URL http://zeta.cs.adfa.oz.au/Spirit/Veda/vedic-transhuman.html

Name=The Unabomber’s Manifesto

Name=Urantia.Ref.html (regarding the sect and the book)

Name=The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)

Name=Getting the W3C Source Code Distribution

Name=The X-Files

Name=Yahoo (popular, now hierarchical link to other websites)

The Wire Service – Do It In Hardware – continued

In the 11/5/95 issue I asked whether it would be possible to program a high speed modem driver that uses the game port. I found a year old file on GEnie regarding game port programming and have included it in this archive. While it doesn’t really deal with modem drivers, it has a lot of useful information. It is from the Kansasfest 1994. I’d still appreciate any help you have to offer regarding the Don Lancaster driver.

Multimedia – CDROM is more than a job… – continued

The Alternative Programming Languages CDROM described here last week has Basic, Bob, Cocktail, DSC, Duel, Dylan, Glish, GNU compiler suite, Ghostscript, Lout, MO, Modula-3, Neudl, Oberon, Parasol, Pascal, Perl, Python, Quincy, ReXX, S-Lang, Sather, Smalltalk, Tcl, and USystems, including all the source code. I had not heard of half of these before, so I was happy to find some mention of a couple of them on the Internet. Dancer (mentioned above in Wire Service) is written in Python, and while looking in some of the Web-related websites I found a few references to still other languages. Some of those languages may be available as source code, presumably in C or some other Unix related language. Porting code and languages is an important part of the plan for Apple II survival and for learning and personal growth.
To conclude this installment, I’d like to reiterate the need for a CDROM version of one or more IIgs book titles that are out of print. CDROM versions of HyperStudio (Roger Wagner Publishing) and HyperCard GS (available from ByteWorks) and their related documentation would be very nice.

Airware – Desktop BASIC for the GS – Progress Report

Here’s the job outline I’ve got: pull the source code off the CDROM and place it on hard drive (I plan to scavenge each one of these languages’ source code files in the same way); check the syntax of the source code (if it is in C – but if for example I learn that the source is really in one of these other languages I’ll have change the order of work); use the ByteWorks’ ORCA/C package to build a working port; place the ported version on two commercial online services and on the Internet so it can be tested as interpreters; build on the experience of porting and debugging the early versions of the interpreter to develop compilers.
In other words, I have no progress to report. For the time being I’ll have to be satisfied with the my role of court jester for all the experienced programmers who read my outline.

Ouch! – Jargon, Slang, & Faces

This would be a good time to type some of those faces. Remember all those things I said I’d have by this week? Well, I’m not typing anything like that again. Don’t have it yet. Sorry. I needed to finish “Captain Quirk”, a book I plan to loan to Dave. Now I can mail the diskettes, the book, and some Clark dip mix (see Issue 1) to him. Transferring things on the Internet is not always as easy as it is supposed to be. Also, my folder on his Mac (Visitors Box) holds 14MB. Soon, very soon.
There was a header for an article but no article in last week’s issue. I got rid of it in my master, but I don’t remember what it said. Also had some of those none-too-smart quotes generated when I used EgoED to make a few small changes, leaving some capital letters in their place when I saved it back as text. Should have thought of that. Reprints of issue 2 should be proofread.

Wish List – drag and drop

The Finder in Mac OS has something called “drag and drop”. What drag and drop means for the user is that a data file icon can be picked up using a click drag (like that used to trashcan a file) and dropped onto the icon of an application which will then be launched and the data file loaded. This can make the system easier to use, since sometimes it is necessary or desired to have a different application load a data file for some reason (graphics files come to mind). I’d like to see a FExt for the GS Finder that could accomplish this.

Next Week! – 11/19/95

Hope to have a review of the GS Worldview online magazine – look for it in The Wire Service.


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.