Archive for the 'Destinations' Category

Vintage Computer Festival West 2019 Info Dump

When I go to an event such as the Vintage Computer Festival West , I spend some time compiling information afterwards. So, here is where I’m dumping that info.

The Vintage Computer Festival West 2019 was August 3 & 4 2019 at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA.
Event hashtag: #vcfwest
Vintage Computer Federation Website:
Vintage Computer Federation Youtube Channel:

Day 1 Videos:
*VCF West 2019 Welcome Video (there is about 10 minutes of silence on the video. Don’t freak out.)
Mentioned in this video:,

* VCF West 2019 Apollo Guidance Computer (AGC) Demonstration 1 (again with the silence)
Mentioned in this video:: Orbiter Space Simulator, NASSP plug in for Orbiter, Virtual AGC on Github

* Second ACG Demo

* VCF West 2019: Bil Herd, ICs and Aging
Mentioned in this video:

* Apple 1 User’s Panel (skip to about the 12 minute mark. They are getting their act together at that point. The sounds will come back up at 13:26. Don’t worry.)
Mentioned in this video: The Apple-1 Registry

Day 2 Videos:
* Apple 1 Demonstration
Mentioned in this video: Louis Rossmann, LO*OP Center, If This Then That

* Apollo Guidance Computer (Information)
Mentioned in this video: How the Apollo Spacecraft works: Part 1 by Jared Owens,

Exhibits and Related Stuff:

Exhibit 06: Before MacIntosh The Apple Lisa (Documentary) – the trailer link doesn’t work at the moment (though you can see a video on the Indiegogo site), and the “Indiegogo” link goes to the kickstarter that has already ended. The correct Indiegogo campaign link is here and it looks to be running until sometime in September 2019 .

Exhibit 07: Atari 400/800 Computers – San Leandro Computer Club

Exhibit 08: RetroShield for Arduino Mega –

Exhibit 14: Apple II Rev. 0 vs. Rev. 7 Replica – Apple II Rev 0

Exhibit 20: IBM 1620 Jr./Recreating the Console Typewriter – Dave Babcock’s YouTube

Exhibit 21: Cadetwriter, A Wheelwriter-based Computer Terminal –

Exhibit 22: Tandy/TRS-80 Color Computers – CocoTALK Talk Show, CoComan Cables, Gunstar Game for the CoCo 3 (6309-only), CoCoVGA, CoCo 3 FPGA

Exhibit 24: MOnSter 6502 – MonSter6502, Evil Mad Scientist

Exhibit 25: The History of Videogames – The MADE, Museum of Art of Digital Entertainment

Exhibit 30: MakerLisp Machine – MakerLisp

Exhibit 36: Apollo Guidance Computer (AGC) Restoration – Project Blog, Article about the restoration, Another Article

ReActiveMicro.comApple 1 replica

Apple II Heaven

San Francisco Bay Area Retrocomputing Club (BARCC)

Links from VCF 2018 that were still open in tabs on my phone:

Adwater & Stir

Obsolescence Guaranteed

Glenside Color Computer Club (home of the Annual “Last” Chicago CoCoFEST!)

Spare Time Gizmos

Nuts & Volts

Cactus 6502 Home-brew

Posted on 3rd August 2019
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An Actual Vacation: Day 2 – Fort Bragg and Points North (pt. 2)

And here’s part two of day two. That first post was getting too long. Oops. Sorry.

When last we left our intrepid explorers, they were leaving the Skunk Train to move on to their next destination. Where were they bound?

Well, as it turns out, McDonalds. But only because we were in a hurry to eat and be on our way.

But! That’s where I found Max.

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Posted on 24th July 2016
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An Actual Vacation: Day 2 – Fort Bragg and Points North (pt.1)

And now onto day two!

After groaning ourselves to awake and dressed (mornings, ugh!), we made our way downstairs to the breakfast room. Breakfast is $15/person at the Weller, and you can decide if you want it or not at any point up to the evening before (provided you get a chance to tell someone.) Let me just tell you to go ahead and buy the breakfast at least once. Seriously. It comes with your choice of coffee, tea, and/or juice. The juice during our stay was a peace nectar that they make in-house. Most of their food is made on-site and/or organic in some way. I tried a bit of everything. I had a chocolate croissant (with peach butter), oatmeal (with peach butter), eggs, nectarine slices, coffee, peach nectar…I’m sure I’m forgetting something.

Behold the remains of our breakfast!

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Posted on 24th July 2016
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An Actual Vacation: Day 1 – Headed to Fort Bragg, CA

The Golden Gate Bridge in the Fog in July 2016

For the first time in ages, my hubby and I actually went on a vacation somewhere together! I know. Don’t faint from shock or anything.
Why not have a nice sit down. There you go.

(Technically, this was my third day of vacation, but I spent the first two watching the Great British Bake Off/Great British Baking Show and doing chores about the house. So, I’m not counting them.)

It took us a while to get going, but we finally made it to the Golden Gate Bridge at about 2:50pm and found it foggy, as you see above. Not terribly surprising. But not long after we were on our way up the 101 toward our destination.
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Posted on 22nd July 2016
Under: Destinations, Travel | 1 Comment »

Bay Area Destinations: The Pez Museum & Classic Toy Museum


Destination: The Burlingame Museum of Pez Memorabilia & Classic Toy Museum
Location: 214 California Drive, Burlingame, CA, 94010, USA
Hours: Open Tuesday – Saturday 10:00am – 6:00pm
Entry Fee: Regular Admission – $3.00 (you can find a discount coupon here.)

Worried about gas prices, but you still want to get out and do things? Worry not! Join me as I investigate the various museums, parks, and other interesting locations in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond.

The Burlingame Museum of Pez Memorabilia & Classic Toy Museum lurks one town up from where I live. Finally, after two years of thinking about it, I got my act together, grabbed my camera, and drove over there. It took all of ten minutes and I even got a parking spot right out front.

Some things to note:

*The best way to easily reach your destination is to turn on Howard from El Camino Real, and then left on California. If you can parallel park, do so almost immediately. You will need change for the meter. If you are not fond of the parallel parking, and don’t mind walking a block or so, make a left on Burlingame and park there (there is even more parking behind the Apple Store if you need it.) You will still need the change, though.

*Bring some cash with you. There is a a $10 minimum to use a credit card at the Pez Museum Store. You want to get some Pez before you leave, right?

*With your price of admission you get a guided tour from the museum’s curator. He really knows his stuff. Also…he has a nice voice. (You can get a PodCast of a tour and hear the voice for yourself here.)

*Hey! The price of admission is only $3!!

The Pez/Classic Toy Museum used to be the curator’s computer store about thirteen years ago. He brought in his Pez dispenser collection, figuring that folks might like to look at it while browsing the computers. More and more, though, people stopped by just to see the Pez. The rest is history. The museum now has an example of every Pez dispenser ever made. A couple of years ago, they also added classic toys to the museum. A toy must be at least fifty years old to be featured.

There are a few things I like to take note of at any of my destinations. At the request of a friend I am trying to keep an eye on the amount of seating available. This museum has no seating. It is, on the other hand, only two rooms in size, so you probably won’t need it. The room that you enter off of the street is the Pez Museum shop, catering to all of your Pez dispenser needs. (I managed to replace my Pez Witch that had a close encounter with ants some years back. And yes. A Pez Witch. Just like the one Willow had on Buffy the Vampire Slayer.) The second room is the museum itself. For all of its diminutive size, I found the displays to be both informative and professional. As you may imagine, the only food available is the aforementioned Pez in the shop, so don’t go expecting to have lunch there. A word to the wise, Burlingame is a rather high rent area. You may wish to have your meal in San Mateo if you are trying to save money. And finally, a word on the subject of crowds. I hate crowds. I do whatever I need to to avoid them. Crowds are not a problem here. I was not the only visitor, but there were only a few other folks in the shop while I was there.

This destination will not take all that long to visit. The meters out front of the museum only allow for a two hour stop, but that was quite long enough for me to see the museum, choose my Pez dispensers (I got a baseball themed one for my husband as well), and take lots of photos. There was still time on my meter when I left. All in all, it is definitely worth a trip, especially if you are like me and enjoy quirky little places. I now know that PEZ was named after the German word for peppermint, “PfeffErminZ,” which was the original flavor of the candy. Hey, fun and knowledge with a side of candy! How can you go wrong?


This isn’t the whole collection, but it looks mighty impressive all in there together, doesn’t it?


Did you know that Colorforms were fifty years old? I didn’t. Nor did I know that the first Colorforms were basic shapes.


The Easy Bake Oven is also at least fifty years of age. I had one when I was a kid. It certainly didn’t look like this one. Did yours?


Look! It’s the World’s Largest Pez Dispenser. Also, me looking like a dork.

So, there you have it. My close encounter with the Pez Museum. To sum up: small, informative, and sweet.

Posted on 1st July 2008
Under: Destinations | 5 Comments »