The process of migrating the cctalk and cctech mailing lists to a new
host in Chicago is underway. This evening, I've moved the list mail
handling to the new server, and this message will be the first live
test. Assuming this works, you shouldn't have to change anything to
post to the list.
The green web pages, the old "pipermail" list archives, and web access
to archives of new postings from this point still require a little work,
which I hope to complete in the next day or two. I will eventually
import the old pipermail archives into the new posting archive, but that
may take a little longer.
The new hosting is provided by the Chicago Classic Computing group.
Many thanks to Jay West for hosting the lists for 20 years!
Hello, I am looking for 3/16ths inch ink ribbon as used on the IBM 029
I have one lightly damaged ribbon that is entirely dry. I was told by a
typewriter restorationist that ribbon re-inking with nylon never works.
Has anyone had much success cleaning and rewetting ink ribbons? The WD40
trick on the internet seems like it would gunk up the punch mechanism.
Thanks for any information yall can provide,
Museum Staff Helps Exonerate David Veney
January 19, 2023, Hunt Valley, MD — Staff members of the System Source Computer Museum recently completed a project that helped exonerate David Veney, wrongly convicted of rape in 1997. In 2005, after Mr. Veney sought a new trial, the state found irregularities in the prosecution, released Mr. Veney from prison, and declined to re-prosecute.
Maryland is one of 35 states that provides compensation for wrongly incarcerated people. But quirks in the law kept the law from applying in Mr. Veney’s case. In 2021, the Maryland law was amended, making Mr. Veney eligible for partial compensation for the nearly nine years he spent in prison. Still, Mr. Veney had not been exonerated..
In June 2022, the Computer Museum at System Source in Hunt Valley, MD, was contacted by Patrick Gilbert, Senior Assistant States Attorney and Chief of the Prosecution Integrity Unit, who asked “Can you read data from a 5.25” Floppy Disk?” Bob Roswell, curator of the museum, quickly replied “Of course!”
It wasn’t quite that simple. In theory, the diskette contained the court stenographic records from the 1992 rape trial of Grant Jones. The transcript was thought to contain evidence that would exonerate both Mr. Jones and Mr. Veney, but the printed transcripts from 1992 had been lost. Unfortunately, the diskette was neither IBM- nor Apple-compatible. It had been written on a DEC PDP-11 minicomputer using the RSX-11 Operating System. Although the museum has a PDP-11 in its collection, it had not yet been restored and could not be started. Brendan Becker, who runs the BLOOP museum inside the Computer Museum, jumped on the problem.
Brendan set up a “Greaseweazle,” a device that reads the magnetic flux transitions on the floppy disk without regard to operating systems, disk formats, or errors. The process returned a file containing long binary strings of ones and zeros. Brendan was able to decode the file structure and found that disk (despite some unreadable parts) contained the raw keystrokes that the court stenographer had recorded in the 1992 rape case using a Stenograph machine from the era. An operator of a Stenograph machine uses chords to rapidly encode conversation by creating keystrokes to represent words, syllables, and phrases. While there is some standardization, each stenographer has his/her own “theory,” which results in individual styles for different stenographers.
Luckily, Patrick Gilbert was able to obtain the services of the stenographer from the original trial (now retired). Together, they were able to substantially reconstruct the transcript from the 1992 trial, using the data provided by Brendan. The recovered transcript showed weird similarities to Mr. Veney’s case.
On March 4, 1992, Alice Arroyo claimed to have been raped while walking home from volunteering at homeless shelter. In her account, the assailant grabbed her shirt, ripped it open, and scratched her chest with his nails in a long, vertical raking motion. Ms. Arroyo provided police with a detailed description of her assailant including the jacket he was wearing. The following day Grant Jones walked into the Salisbury Police Department (in Wicomico County, MD) to report that his wallet had gone missing from the homeless shelter. Mr. Jones matched the description of the assailant, was arrested, and was convicted of assault with intent to rape.
On September 24, 1996, Salisbury Police responded to a complaint at the home of Alice Arroyo, who stated that she had been raped. Again, she provided a detailed description of the assailant and described suffering scratches on her chest in a long vertical raking motion. On October 3, 1996, David Veney, a former neighbor, was charged with rape. He was 20 years old at the time.
Mr. Veney’s first trial in April 1997 ended in a mistrial. The hung jury consisted of four jurors voting to convict and eight declaring him innocent.
In September 1997, Mr Veney was retried and found guilty of various charges, including burglary, assault, battery, and rape. He was sentenced to 25 years for rape and concurrent sentences for the other offenses.
In 2005, Mr. Veney sought a new trial on the basis of ineffective representation. (That lawyer was later disbarred.) When the State reviewed the case, substantial doubts about Mr. Veney’s guilt arose, including the eerie similarity in Ms. Arroyo’s testimony in the two cases. Mr. Veney was released from prison, and the State declined to re-prosecute.
The reconstructed transcript of Mr. Jones’ 1992 trial proved vital in establishing Mr. Veney’s innocence. On January 13, 2023, Judge Teresa Garland awarded Mr Veney approximately $730,000, along with medical, housing, and educational benefits.
The staff of the Computer Museum at System Source is proud to have played a small part in Mr. Veney’s exoneration. Bob Roswell, Curator, later learned that the state had contacted numerous other technology firms, who were unable to render assistance, before asking the Museum for assistance.
The Amendment to Maryland Law Regarding Compensation for Wrongful Convictions:
The System Source Computer Museum:
Some of the floppies I’m recovering data look to be either a multi-part ZIP file, or something. Was this a separate product from PKZIP? I’m not sure if I have a copy of PKZIP in the stuff I’ve recovered thus far. I’ve not pulled them into DOSBOX to try and restore them, so far I’ve just tried to use Stuffit-Expander. Part of the problem is every file has the same name, just on different floppies.
Over at the CoCo Mailing List, there's a archeological discussion about
the DLOAD BASIC command in older versions of the Color Computer BASIC.
It uses the serial port (and no doubt was designed for computer sharing
in classrooms or similar), but the questions are around how it was
designed and what inspiration is drew from.
I infer MS wrote the code, and the protocol includes:
P.ACK - Acknowledge - C8 hex.
P.ABRT - Abort - BC hex.
P.BLKR - Block request - 97 hex.
P.FILR - File request - 8A hex.
P.NAK - Negative Acknowledge - DE hex.
Does that look like any protocol anyone has seen before?
These items have all been claimed.
> On Jan 31, 2023, at 12:57 PM, grif615(a)mindspring.com wrote:
> Does the post office still have a book rate?
> On Jan 31, 2023 10:12, David Barto via cctalk <cctalk(a)classiccmp.org> wrote:
> This is all on paper and weighs a fair bit.
> Located in San Diego area, so pickup would be best.
> I’m willing to ship it for 50% of the shipping cost.
> All classic computer related:
> UCSD Pascal pSystem listing from UCSD Pascal II.0 along with notes about what BIOS failures look like.
> Listing of a pascal_interpreter, written in Pascal (of course)
> Tech Notes and Books:
> Tech Notes:
> Booting the CP/M Adaptable System on the IMS8000
> SofTech MicroSystems Errata sheet for the FORTRAN Manual
> UCSD Pascal System Synchronous Input/Output Subsystem Implementation Guide (II.1, Preliminary) Date 10 April 79
> SofTech MicroSystems Marketing Department memo on Version IV compatiblity with Preceding Versions
> SofTech MicroSystems Adaptable System Tech Note (TN #2)
> UCSD Pascal Version I.5 September 1978
> UCSD Pascal Version II.0 March 1979
> SofTech MicroSystems Micro News Vol I, No. 3 May 1980
> SofTech MicroSystems UCSD Pascal II.0 Users Manual Feb 1980
> SofTech MicroSystems UCSD Fortran User Reference Manual May 1980
> Practical Pascal Programs By Greg Davidson
This is all on paper and weighs a fair bit.
Located in San Diego area, so pickup would be best.
I’m willing to ship it for 50% of the shipping cost.
All classic computer related:
UCSD Pascal pSystem listing from UCSD Pascal II.0 along with notes about what BIOS failures look like.
Listing of a pascal_interpreter, written in Pascal (of course)
Tech Notes and Books:
Booting the CP/M Adaptable System on the IMS8000
SofTech MicroSystems Errata sheet for the FORTRAN Manual
UCSD Pascal System Synchronous Input/Output Subsystem Implementation Guide (II.1, Preliminary) Date 10 April 79
SofTech MicroSystems Marketing Department memo on Version IV compatiblity with Preceding Versions
SofTech MicroSystems Adaptable System Tech Note (TN #2)
UCSD Pascal Version I.5 September 1978
UCSD Pascal Version II.0 March 1979
SofTech MicroSystems Micro News Vol I, No. 3 May 1980
SofTech MicroSystems UCSD Pascal II.0 Users Manual Feb 1980
SofTech MicroSystems UCSD Fortran User Reference Manual May 1980
Practical Pascal Programs By Greg Davidson
Originally as I understand it the mouse as a product of Xerox was intended not so much for general use but to aid youngins and disabled people with their usage. And despite the never-mousers, predominantly linux fanatics, it's an indispensable tool for nearly everyone. There was a stint where I favored trackballs. But it's a toss up as to which is more natural and faster. Each may excel in cwrtain applications.
Then there's the touch screen (and touch pad). I find touch pads superior, make that way superior to that horrific track point used on old Thinkpads. But again that'a me. Touch screens, my hatred for them grows almost daily. They have their place. And for portable devices they're largely the only game in town. But I often wish I at least had the option of a mouse or something close.
Is this an example of where older tech beats the new tech? Or do aspects of the newer tech just await refinement?