Nothing beats virus-related-boredom like a trip down memory lane. This morning I got an email from Japan – specifically from game journalist Koji Fukuyama.
Now, I get stuff in the mail all the time and I’m VERY wary of people asking questions out of the blue, not relating to the blog – as there are SO MANY scammers out there. – But in this case, Koji was writing about Japan’s first “Adventure” game “Omotesando Adventure” made at the end of 1982 and how it relates to one of the earliest “Adventure” development systems from the same time – specifically my own publication in “Dr Dobbs Journal of Calasthenics and Orthodonis” which eventually became abbreviated to “Dr Dobbs”. The article was, rather unimaginately, called “Adven-80” (marketing was never my strong point). That’s my code on the front cover you see in the Dr Dobbs photo above.
Clearly by his questions, the writer had done his background checking – just as I thought the entire world had forgotten all about my early pre-Internet-age efforts, along comes someone who wants to write all about it. Well better now while I’m still alive, I guess 🙂 The photos here show a tiny bit of my history for perspective…the earliest reference to my published projects I could find was in “Practical Electronics” from 1979. On the right below, as well as continuing to run businesses I became on od the talking heads when it came to British small businesses as I took on the role of IT director of the UK’s FSB.
If you are bored, there’s more here, here and here about Adven-80.. Oh and the ZIP file of my source code for the same might fill a few bored moments.. or not. Hard to believe how we managed a world without computer graphics – and no, I’d rather not go back, thank you. Before “Advan-80” I’d had success with “Creative Computing in the USA – a little something I called “Fantasia”. Not a lot of info exists about that but here’s the “transfer of copyright” agreement I signed.
That early success pushed me on to create my first company Quantech (briefly called “Edify” – an off-the-shelf name), soon to be joined by Aidan Ruff – here we are back in 1989 with one of our first products – “SoftSpeak” – PC speech before there was PC speech hardware. I’m at the back. Eventually I decided the hair wasn’t worth the effort – that took off years 🙂
Apart from Covid-19, Boris and Trump (in that order), I am more than happy with living in the 21st century, so this dip into the past will definitely be a one-off, probably to the relief of younger subscribers.