A gathering of Apple II hobbyists from around Japan this week put together one of the most interesting events this Apple guy has been to yet. While most events tend to put together schedules that are structured and adhered to religiously, the schedule for this event was pretty much out the window the minute people started unpacking. After paying our 2000 yen fee for the event and receiving our lanyards with photographic name tags, we started the event with a quick introduction by the host of the event, Atsushi Ushiroda.
FAPPLE2 Fest 2018 was held in a small 16 x16 room in the Iwamotocho neighborhood of Tokyo with just 6 tables. Yet, these tables held more Apple II projects than I have seen in one location since MacWorld Expo 2002. Everything was there with every type of project and exhibit, product, and experiment being shown.
Organized by Atsushi Ushiroda who is best known for writing the Apple II gs Japanese input system, the event was loosely associated with the former Apple II group FApple II, a Nifty Serve based messaging group, comparable to the Genie Round Table on AOL. Of course, no event would be complete without its own signage and swag. Atsushi made name tags for every attendee with their associated Facebook photo, making all of us in the room a bit younger since the photos were mostly older photos while the average age of the attendees was nearer to 60 with the youngest being 49.
While long time members and collectors like Toru “Sckop” Izumi were prevented from attending due to the large amount of snow on the western side of Japan, others like Hirohisa Yumoto, known as the Apple-1 collector, was able to attend albeit abbreviated.
Atsuhiro Suzuki was one person who was well prepared for the event, displaying not just one or two different scan converters, but nearly a dozen different versions of well known converters. He also managed in less than a week to actually get the ESP-12F ordered and essple Apple-1 emulator installed and running on a miniature Casio TV from the 1980’s. Telnetting into the essple emulator from his cell phone was the kicker. The fun bit was his display of the Fastchip IIe from A2Heaven and the attempts by a number of us to find a game on a floppy which utilized the speed of the chip. Skyfox turned out to be the quintessential choice and with the chip turned up full speed put everyone on a view that would make even the most hardened pilot queasy. Other programs were tried with a variety of interesting effects, all the while,making it know to all of us that the accelerator was definitely a fun thing to have in our Apple IIe’s.
There were a bevy of presentations and displays during the day,which would fit every Apple II fans desires including components, cards, modern day manipulations and setups as well as prototypes. While most displays are static in these types of events, this one was changing constantly with different configurations being tested, cards being inserted into different machines and the instant gratification of seeing things work. At the end of the day, everyone packed up and then sat down to what might be considered to be a round of “Can you Top This”, with Atsushi Shiroda showing off his Apple II gs emulator running in multiple emulators and not slowing down one bit.
A major moment of nostalgia was achieved when the John Morris produced Applesauce being shown and demoed by yours truly, was used to create an image of Castle Wolfenstein to test Yoshidaichi Yoshikawa’s Russian Apple II plus clone. While the effect was not quite complete due to the lack of a mocking board, it was fun to see the favorite game of a generation come back to life on a machine that obviously had seen a bit of mileage.
Overall, the FAPPLE2 Fest 2018 event was a completely successful, spirited and fun-filled event with the whole thing breaking 100% even on costs and everyone going away happy with their newly received FAPPLE2 thumb drive, containing every message from the FAPPLE2 message boards from 1988 to today! Swag is always a good way to send people off and this event was one that did it right.
Some of the interesting offerings included the following items
Espple-1 (Shown by Atsuhiro Suzuki)
Pravetz Computer (Shown by Yoshidaichi Yoshikawa)
Color LCD with Apple //c Plus (Shown by Atsuhiro Suzuki)
Applesauce (Shown by Bill Martens)
Apple-1 Clone in a Briefcase with CFFA-1 (Shown by Atsushi Ushiroda)