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Festival of Inappropriate Technology 126

A reader writes " NTK Magazine and Mute Magazine are holding a Festival of Inappropriate Technology in London city centre on the 9th of June. Featuring the Commodore 64 underground, The Classic Amiga Preservation Society, DNSCon, the EFF plus many more talks and stalls. There will also be wired and wireless network access available. The Register will also be there. Should make for a great day, all are welcome!"
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Festival of Inappropriate Technology

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  • Today? (Score:2, Funny)

    by cheezycrust ( 138235 )
    Hmm... June 9 - gives me plenty of time to pack my bags...
  • You'd think anything interesting that could be said in a Commodore 64 talk or an Amiga talk would have been covered in some talk, oh, five or ten years ago. :P

    Then again, I guess there are some younger folk around who haven't been able to experience the wonder of a C64. I can't wait to read what people have to say *after* the conference. :)
    • Your forgeting that amiga's got a new OS that could be interesting
    • 'Nuff about the C64... Does anybody remember the Commodore PET?
      • A machine where a misplaced POKE could cause the machine to catch fire :-)

        It took years for other computer manufacturers to catch up and make the BIOS reprogrammable in order to give virus writers something to aim at.

        And years more before Sony could create a CD that freezes a Mac.

        • The sad thing is that I could have bought about 20 PETs from this guy who won some surplus auction, for $100 in 1996.

          I passed them up and got the IBM PC/XT/286s instead, and sold them at the flea market to make my money back.

          If I had bought those PETs and sold them today on eBay, they would have gotten several hundred dollars a piece.
        • poke 144,15 if memory serves me right.... made the machine crash as a "security measure" (but no flames....)
          • Actually it doesn't...

            If you want to crash it try messing around with location 1 which is where memory banks / how the C-64 is segmented memorywise can be swithced in and out. Flip out the ROM's while IRQ's/NMI's are enabled and kablooey.

            BTW, It is possible to disable NMI's on the 6502 line... Just enable and trigger an NMI and then never RTI from it.

            Long live the C= 64/128's...
            • Geesh - If I would take a look at the title then I might see the subject line. Ignore the "it doesn't" - I dunno on the pet.

              All the rest of the message still applies.
    • The wonder of a C64?

      *glances into the next room*

      I still have myself a fully functional C16...ahh Battle.
  • Woo hoo - never seen so many geeks in one place. There's a stall selling teatowels (trans: dish clothes) with various browers and Google search results printed on them - ideal for geek washing-up, maybe that one day a week when you rinse out the old coffee mug.
  • Can I...... (Score:3, Funny)

    by echucker ( 570962 ) on Sunday June 09, 2002 @08:39AM (#3668261) Homepage
    bring my UNIVAC that I play Pong on?
  • by rickthewizkid ( 536429 ) on Sunday June 09, 2002 @08:42AM (#3668265)
    I wish I had known about this earlier....

    But then again, considering that the average piece of software takes 5 minutes to load on one of those Commodores... well... maybe I can leave my house now and get there before the show is over...

    (As a side thought)

    Time required to load GEOS on a C64 - 5 minutes
    Time required to load DOS + Windows 3.1 on a 486 - 5 minutes
    Time requiree to load WinXP on a P3 - 3 minutes
    Time required to load Red Hat on a P3 workstation - 5 minutes...

    • Took my Amiga 33 seconds from reset for it to announce "System loaded at 5:55 AM."

      After another 12 seconds the backdrop appeared, but it works fine in the between time.
    • I guess you just don't know how to setup a computer

      Time required to load DOS + Windows 3.1 on a 486 - 5 minutes

      Win3.1 on my 486 [I had a 66Mhz 486SLC] booted in all of 20 seconds or so. The core of DOS took about a minute at most to boot. In total about 80 seconds from boot to windows [if it was in the autoexec.bat]

      Time requiree to load WinXP on a P3 - 3 minutes

      Now I have an Athlon XP [1.53Ghz, ATA100 disk, 512 MB of ram] and it takes roughly 2 minutes to boot. So this figure isn't too far off.

    • Time to get to ready prompt: a fraction of a second. It beats C64, ZX Spectrum etc. dead. I think perhaps it didn't test its RAM very thoroughly :-)
    • Time required to load Red Hat on a P3 workstation - 5 minutes...

      I only run Red Hat on my notebook, but it boots to a Gnome/Enlightenment desktop in just under three minutes (excluding time to type 'root' and my password).. and that's only a cranky old 266 Mhz!
    • Time required to load Red Hat on a P3 workstation - 5 minutes...

      Sounds like it's time to dump Redh*t. LFS [linuxfromscratch.org] on a Celery 433, with Apache, Samba, Squid, OpenSSH, and qmail added, takes maybe half a minute (if that) from end-of-POST to login prompt. Even if it was configured as a workstation (with X) instead of a server (without X), I doubt that it'd take anywhere near 5 minutes to load up.

    • Time required to load GEOS on a C64 - 5 minutes
      Time required to load DOS + Windows 3.1 on a 486 - 5 minutes
      Time requiree to load WinXP on a P3 - 3 minutes
      Time required to load Red Hat on a P3 workstation - 5 minutes...

      Time required to load Commodore KERNAL and BASIC 2.0 on a C64 - 5 seconds... ;-P

    • Time requiree to load WinXP on a P3 - 3 minutes

      You haven't bought a new computer lately ... have you? WinXP is ALREADY LOADED ... sheesh ...

      Time required to load Red Hat on a P3 workstation - 5 minutes...

      Now THAT's better ... but did the P3 workstation already have WinXP loaded ... or was it an illegal "naked PC? [slashdot.org]"

      It's much yummier to fight fires with marshmallows ...

      • You haven't bought a new computer lately ... have you? WinXP is ALREADY LOADED ... sheesh ...
        That's not "loaded," that's "installed."

        Loading is the process of reading the program from disk into memory. Installing is the process of copying the program from its installation medium to the computer's hard disk.

        If you're buying your computers with Windows already "loaded," then I'd like to know what your secret is for getting the computer from the store to your house, fully set up and powered on the whole way.
  • I forsee a gathering of misstreated HP calc hardcore fans... 'cause ever since the GX was introduced, the calcs are going from bad to worse :( the r&d of HP is as good as dead :/

  • been there (Score:4, Informative)

    by mocktor ( 536122 ) on Sunday June 09, 2002 @08:52AM (#3668279) Homepage
    I just got home from it... the wifi access is nothing to write home about but the old hardware is cool and the guy with the wearable spectrum rocked

    If any of you go - the entrance is around the back of the building, not on euston road - took me a while to figure that out :/

  • When I saw the title "Festival of Inappropriate Technology" I thought it was going to be a showcase of stuff that was more along the lines of the ibrator [mecha.net], not old school/retro computer/hacker convention...
  • I think I'll go look for my c64 & atari2600 & see if they still work... And at the same time I will also be able to chek if my TV is still working like it did a month ago when I last watched it. :)
  • Any (working) technology you'd like to sell - via our experimental "bring and buy" stall. Though, once again, please be (reasonably) sensible about what you bring (or buy, for that matter)


    This sir is mac bong only slightly used I'm only asking 3.50 (say it like tweefiffy, ok?) I'm trying to save up to buy a origin 2000 [sgi.com] to grow weed in.

  • Timing? (Score:4, Informative)

    by HuskyDog ( 143220 ) on Sunday June 09, 2002 @09:06AM (#3668295) Homepage
    Of course, it might have been a nice idea if this item had appeared a few days ago. As it is, it seems to have been posted about 2 hours AFTER the event started!!

    From here, trains to London take about 1 hour, but what with getting to the station, waiting for a train (not frequent on Sundays) and getting across London I won't be there until its nearly over.

    Mind you, I subscribe to the mailing lists of the EFF and Campaign for Digital Rights. Both are supposed to have stands and neither bothered to tell me about it.

    • Quoth Dave Green: [upon being Slashdotted midway through event] "Why link to us now? Yeah, like they're going to fly over from San Francisco today."
  • by Dw0rkin ( 565516 )
    /. geeks are not there?
  • by Rhinobird ( 151521 ) on Sunday June 09, 2002 @09:43AM (#3668355) Homepage

    Sure...I'll just whip out my old commie and surf on over to that site and see what's up...

    Oh my GAWD!!!! you can surf [armory.com] with a commodore 64!

  • I'm posting this from the tea lounge behind the stage.. You gotta love consume.net

    Some neat technology here and some not so neat, but it's good to catch up with some peeps..

    It's a real shame that the PA wasn't too clear for the Speccy talk..

  • Well, to let you all know, i was the one who submitted this story over a week ago. I couldnt log in at the time to post it as a registered user. So i had given everyone plenty of notice about it. Just must have been a pretty busy slashdot submission bin.

    Ah well, hopefully this will become a regular festival.
  • Guess I could always use the caravan I built from that old Burroughs B3700 cabinet...
  • I find it interesting that they encourage [xcom2002.com] people to exchange supermarket loyalty/discount/surveillance cards. I bias my own shopping toward stores that don't use them, but does anyone know of similar swap events in the States?
    • does anyone know of similar swap events in the States?

      It really doesn't take an "event" to swap your card.

      My friends and I have been swapping whenever possible since they first introduced the things.

      And most stores let you just give them your phone number if you've forgotten your card, so you don't even need to let them know you've "swapped".
  • It would have given me a reason to dust off the Acorn Electron, as it is I have found out too late to go...
  • Blogging it live (Score:2, Informative)

    by mouthbeef ( 35097 )
    I'm blogging it live from the floor -- on Boing Boing [boingboing.net].

    Also, live discussion on #infoanarchy on irc.openprojects.net

  • by BenHmm ( 90784 ) <ben.benhammersley@com> on Sunday June 09, 2002 @10:42AM (#3668500) Homepage
  • Yey Gus for giving the same wireless security talk he did at YAPC::Europe [yapc.org]last year.

    Basically at the end of the event he presented the "We've had free wireless access for the entire event , and we sniffed this many plain text passwords flying across the open" talk. Silly, silly people.

    SSH is your friend.

  • This was pushed hard by Extreme and NTK.net for the last few weeks. I'm glad I went, the chatbot++ discussion was enjoyable (in the "take it Outside" fringe event in the pub next door).

    Freeman Dyson rules!

    (especially when he shit on just about everything the crowd enthused about!)
  • Commie 64s, Amigas, and ... a website? Why isn't this a gopher site?
  • by ibirman ( 176167 ) on Sunday June 09, 2002 @03:50PM (#3669498) Homepage
    I just read a great book that talks about "Inappropriate Technology" by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. The book is available for free at the Baen Free Library [baen.com]. It is a great read and was very enjoyable. Really puts a different perspective on "good" and "bad" technology. Funny that they used the same term for the show.

  • Is the supermarket card swapping [xcom2002.com]. I hate supermarket cards tracking me down and seeing what I do. This is a great way to fight back against the supermarkets who used to give us all of their 'deals' anonymously. Now we have to use those cards, which I leave at home at times, or get raped for prices.

    Is there any way that we could set up a big slashdot card swap? My Albertson's for yours.
    • Re:The Best part... (Score:2, Interesting)

      by iank ( 18674 )
      A much better use for supermarket loyalty cards.... give a tramp a home.

      Let me explain. In the UK some bank ATM (cash points) are inside the bank building and the only way to get in (out of hours) is by swiping your ATM card to make the door open (the rest of the bank is shuttered off). I assume this is to stop tramps using it as a place to sleep. However I discovered that a supermarket loyalty card also lets you in. So if you really hate supermarket loyalty cards, you can now put them to good use and give a tramp a warm place to sleep. :-)
      • much respect, there are a lot of good people near where i work with nowhere to sleep. One question: which supermarket?

      • In almost every case, the card opening is simply a switch hidden behind an approriate sized slot. Anything which will push through the slot will open the door. That's why a card inserted in any of the 4 possible orientations will open the door, while on the actual ATM, it has to be inserted in the 1 working orientation.
  • Had an interesting time there this afternoon meeting different sides of the online society. My favourite exhbit was the french guy with those mechanical birds that sung and flew.

    One of the highlites (?) which i unfortunately missed was the winner of the Most Geeky Carrier Bag competition. Can anyone who was there tell me who won? Conversely, what bag would be voted best by the /. community?


  • Photos (Score:2, Informative)

    by sidetrack ( 4550 )
    Some (not very many) photos (not very varied, or good) are here [digitalbrain.com]
  • I was there too (Score:2, Informative)

    by GreyFish ( 156639 )

    Showing off the soekris [soekris.com] Net4521's which consume.net [consume.net] may be adopting as there weapon of choice.

    The french guy with the singing birds and the cybernetic parrot sausage is Paul Granjon from zlabs [zprod.org].

  • Organisers say that at least 1,200 paying guests came through the door, each stumping up £3 ($5). It shows there's a demand out there for this type of event, something to bear in mind for any /. conferences.

    Hats off to Dave at NTK [ntk.net] and the other organisers, for all their hard work.

UFOs are for real: the Air Force doesn't exist.