Tony Diaz Starts Computer Gaming & Hardware SIG

Tony Diaz with Woz at KansasFest. Tony demoing vintage hardware at KansasFest.

Long-time Friend of Softalk and KansasFest regular, Tony Diaz has joined The Softalk Apple Project community to start the Computer Gaming & Hardware SIG (Special Interest Group).

It's not so much that Computer Gaming and Vintage Apple Hardware fit together as a SIG, but rather these are Tony's twin passions which he wants to bring to the STAP project. Over time as more folks get involved, this SIG will likely split in two. And we expect Tony would join both. :-) But to save him from going to too many meetings with himself at the start, we've decided on the single SIG approach.

Peter Caylor Joins Advisory Board and Scanning & Preservation SIG

The Elusive Peter Caylor shown in famous art avatar and Apple LoRes (insert)

We are extremely pleased, almost beyond measure, to welcome Peter Caylor as our newest member of The Softalk Apple Project Advisory Board. In addition to serving as an Adviser, Peter is the "Heavylifting Champion" of the newly formed Scanning & Preservation SIG (Special Interest Group).

"While the STAP project was in its early days," said Jim Salmons, project Research Director, "Peter stepped up and volunteered to contribute his incredible personal collection of high-resolution, OCRed PDF scans of nearly all the Softalk magazines! Not only that, he described this mega-to-die-for ultra-awesome large-format flatbed scanner with large-capacity sheet feeder. It was truly amazing what he was offering to the project."

Henry Lowood Joins STAP Advisory Board

We are extremely pleased to announce that Henry Lowood, Curator of the History of Technology and Film & Media Collections of Stanford Libraries, has joined the Softalk Apple Project (STAP) Advisory Board.

"As a grassroots community project, Henry's deep and broad knowledge of museum informatics and the requirements for digital collections preservation and management will be invaluable," said Jim Salmons, a founding organizer of the project and tech lead on the FactMiners sub-project, "In addition, his personal deep interest and activity in preserving and exploring the evolution of computer games is a big plus as we evolve the FactMiners social-game ecosystem as an innovative way to document and explore cultural heritiage digital collections."

Softalk Magazine FactMiners Fact Cloud to be CIDOC-CRM Compliant


The Softalk Apple Project is pleased to announce adoption of the Conceptual Reference Model (CRM) of the International Committee for Documentation (CIDOC) of the International Council of Museums (ICOM). The CIDOC-CRM is an 'ontology' for cultural heritage information, in other words it describes in a formal language the concepts and relations relevant to the documentation of cultural heritage. This ISO standard will be used as the reference model for the development of the FactMiners Fact Cloud metamodel that will logically organize the 'facts' to be 'mined' out of the digital archive of Softalk magazine, respecting both the elements of its editorial content and the complex document structure of a magazine.

Roger Wagner Publishing Ads Scanned for Internet Archive Software Collection


We had a request from Mike Whalen, a volunteer field researcher/archivist for the Internet Archive this week. He is documenting early Apple microcomputer business software as part of the Archive's Software Collection. To date, there are over seventy classic Apple business software programs in the Business Case collection. The most incredible thing is that the developers at the Internet Archive have created these amazing software emulators that let you run this classic software today right in your browser!

FactMiners and Softalk Archive to Demo at MW2014 Conference


We are extremely pleased to announce that our proposal, The FactMiners Social-Game Ecosystem: Leveraging Metamodel Subgraphs in Neo4j Graph Databases, has been accepted by the Program Committee for the Demonstration Track of the Museums and the Web 2014 annual conference to be held April 2-5 in Baltimore, Maryland USA. [Note: Sometimes this link to the proposal doesn't "take" until the second time you try it. Will update when official announcement and program update is on-line.]

FactMiners Milestone: Neo4j GraphGist Design Docs On-line

I have been very quiet during the year-end holiday and throughout January. That is because I have been busy in the 'deep weeds' of moving the FactMiners social-game ecosystem forward. Quick summary... The FactMiners game is the means we will use to create an incredible 'Fact Cloud' of all the information in all 48 issues of Softalk magazine. It is an ambitious mission, but one that is guaranteed to be "serious fun"– especially when we create a crowdsource game technology and community (that's the ecosystem scope of this).

Remember when Softalk asked, "Who is Lord British?"

While scanning the January 1981 issue recently donated to The Softalk Apple Project document archive by Steven Brosch, my eye caught an asterisked footnote on page 34. And with that, this little "History Detectives" game was afoot!


This "Who is Lord British? Contest" has got to be one of the more unusual examples of Softalk's frequent use of contests, puzzles, polls, and other techniques to actively engage its community of avid readers. Softalk contests were most often headline articles in their own right. This one apparently was a subtle entry intended for the interest and pleasure of the focused, detail-oriented reader.