Blathr Wayne Lorentz

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Showing blathrs with the tag “TRS-80.”

Dumb terminals

Wednesday, May 31st, 2023 Alive 19,027 days

I am both impressed and disappointed with macOS.

I set up a new user account so that I could telnet in to a macOS box to perform certain tasks that can only be done via telnet, and with a CLI.

Not surprisingly, in 2023, macOS doesn't come with terminal definitions for a TRS-80 Model 100. It's a 40-year-old machine, so it makes sense that I would have to build my own. Which I did.

But as I was doing so, I noticed that macOS still comes with terminal definitions for far older, and more obscure computers than the one I'm connecting to it with.

  • Altos machines
  • Amigas
  • Apple Lisas (natch)
  • 85 types of AT&T terminals
  • C. Itoh (I didn't even know C. Itoh made computers)
  • Commodore B-128s
  • HeathKits
  • I.B.M. computers running Aixterm in Japanese
  • Microbees
  • Minitels
  • Dozens of NCR terminals
  • Several types of Kaypros
  • Four types of Zenith machines

Granted, these terminal definitions are just part of the stock set that is packed in with many Unixes. But I still find it surprising that after a half-century, these files continue to proliferate, and still exist, even though the number of people who would use them is basically zero.

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Squint harder

Sunday, May 28th, 2023 Alive 19,024 days

The New York Times on a TRS-80 Model 100

Weekend project: Coming up with a harder, slower, less-reliable way to read the New York Times. Mission accomplished.

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Monday, February 20th, 2023 Alive 18,927 days

The activity light on an active TRS-80 Model 100 Backpack drive

The SD card floppy drive emulator I use on my TRS-80 has its activity light facing the wrong direction. So I drilled a hole in the case, and voila!

I wonder how many other tech problems can be solved with power tools.

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She doesn't even have thumbs

Saturday, September 10th, 2022 Alive 18,764 days

Annie trying to use a TRS-80 Model 100

“Whadda ya mean there's no Facebook Messenger on this thing? I have to call my bookie to beat the spread!”

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You are about to be eaten by a grue

Sunday, July 3rd, 2022 Alive 18,695 days

Some people like to measure a computerʼs ability to asking if it can run Linux. Some ask if it can run Doom. I ask, ”Can it run Zork?” The answer for my TRS-80 Model 100 is “Yes, with a little help.”

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Itʼs the Tower of Pisa

Monday, March 15th, 2021 Alive 18,220 days

Htop, seen with a TRS-80 Model 100 terminal

Today I learned that top does not respect terminal settings. But htop does.

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Because it's nano

Sunday, March 14th, 2021 Alive 18,219 days

Nano editing a file in a terminal on a TRS-80 Model 100

Today I learned that Nano works fine on the tiny screen of a TRS-80 Model 100.

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You are likely to be eaten by a grue

Saturday, March 13th, 2021 Alive 18,218 days

Zork in a terminal on a TRS-80 Model 100

I can finally play Zork on my TRS-80 Model 100. Sort of.

Iʼm actually using the Model 100ʼs terminal program to connect to a wifi dongle on the back of the machine which connects to my wifi router, which connects to my Mac Mini, where the game is actually running.

Some day Iʼd like to run Zork on this actual machine, but that would entail installing CP/M on the 100, which is still a very experimental process, and more complicated than I have time for.

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Welcome to 1983

Saturday, March 13th, 2021 Alive 18,218 days

…and weʼre online!

Slightly less dramatic than connecting to CompuServe for the first time, but nevertheless a personal communications victory.

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Dead Letter Office

Saturday, October 3rd, 2020 Alive 18,057 days

Computer, coffee, cookies — ready to write

When I want to get things off my chest, I bang the words into an old TRS-80 I keep in the closet. I do it in story form.

I’ve found that writing stories is a good way to expend excess mental energy. I’ve written hundreds of stories on that machine. Every month or so, after they’re perfected, I pull out the batteries and the stories disappear forever.

It’s like in the old days when people would write their confessions in letters and throw them in the fireplace, or deliberately mail them to undeliverable addresses.

You used to be able to buy bundles of these letters from the Post Office’s sorting facility’s Dead Letter Office. I don’t think you can anymore. Now they’re probably auctioned off in palettes with other undeliverable to big companies that throw away the letters and sell the wayward packages on Amazon.

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Friday, February 22nd, 2019 Alive 17,468 days

A TRS-80 Model 100 running the Associated Press Mouse program

I have written down my memories of using a TRS-80 Model 100 as a journalist.

To keep it kosher, I wrote it on my TRS-80 Model 100.

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Friday, August 24th, 2018 Alive 17,286 days

A TRS-80 and a coffee at The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf

Relaxing, retro style.

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Friday, August 17th, 2018 Alive 17,279 days

My house is finally eligible for gigabit internet. The nerd in me says going from 300/50 to 1,000/35 for an extra $18 is a no-brainer. My brain says I don't need a thousand megabits to play telnet games on my TRS-80.

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Sunday, July 22nd, 2018 Alive 17,253 days

A successful XMODEM transmission

We have achieved XMODEM on the TRS-80. Weekend project complete.

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