[OT] Looking for some Zenith Z100 software - CP/M

This is a discussion on [OT] Looking for some Zenith Z100 software - CP/M ; Andrea wrote: > Today finally I received a disk from the previous owner of my Z-120, > that's the only disk that survived and luckily it works. It boots CP/M > and there is a eprom program and utilities on ...

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Thread: [OT] Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

  1. Re: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Andrea wrote:

    > Today finally I received a disk from the previous owner of my Z-120,
    > that's the only disk that survived and luckily it works. It boots CP/M
    > and there is a eprom program and utilities on it [but no FORMAT]
    >.... I used ImageDisk [from Dave Dunfield] and it
    > works! I succesfully made an image of my disk and succesfully tranfered
    > it back to another 5,25" disk...and this disk works on the real Z-120!
    >
    > So at least now I know there is a way to make disk images of the Zenith
    > software, let's see if someone will make some of them, I think that
    > putting them on-line would be a great thing for the community, I know
    > for sure I am not the only one in Europe looking for some software for
    > the Zenith computer.


    I hate to post anything that would seem to be rude to Andrea. She is a
    person of good will. She has some very nice images of her Z-120 on her
    site:

    http://myretrocomputing.altervista.o...enithz120.html

    and she kindly lists my Web site as a relevant link.

    But as I've already posted, I have for some years offered a set of
    Z-100 system disks to "the community". They are created ON a Z-120,
    and include format and other programs, as I posted in this thread a few
    days ago. However, what I offer is NOT FREE. I charge for my time, my
    space (for manuals, computers), my Web expenses, and of course for
    shipping and packing costs. I have some free stuff as well, and the
    contents of my Web site are freely available yet also require my time
    and effort.

    Without making a case about it, my time and space and effort are not
    free.

    But I compliment Dave Dunfield and his "old computers" site, which
    offers not just images of disks but a collection of support and
    development software. A good part of it is his own work as well, which
    others paid for at other times and were glad to do so. He's been
    generous with his time and with his prior work. But that, and similar
    freely provided works or archives by others, do not mean that
    everything old or out of use should ALSO be free.

    Herb Johnson

    Herbert R. Johnson, phone 609-771-1503, New Jersey USA
    web site
    domain mirror
    my email address: hjohnson AAT retrotechnology DOTT com
    if no reply, try in a few days: herbjohnson ATT comcast DOTT net
    "Herb's Stuff": old Mac, SGI, 8-inch floppy drives
    S-100 IMSAI Altair computers, docs, by "Dr. S-100"


  2. Re: [OT] Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Charles Richmond wrote:

    > I collected my Z100 programs because I too have a Z100. I have *not*
    > gotten into using it, because it has a busted power supply.


    So I guess that your Z100 programs, if they're all like the one you sent
    me, are actually ms-dos programs...and this explains why you didn't know
    it ;-)

    > At some
    > point in the future, I plan to acquire another power supply for the
    > machine.


    I think that it could be easily repaired, if my memory doesn't fail the
    PSU is not so much complicated electronically speaking. If you need me
    to check any value on my working PSU I'll be glad to help, but probably
    mine is quite different from yours since it's 200V.

    > Lee has his fingers into many pies. I see him post often on the Yahoo
    > Group dedicated to the 1802. IMHO you should continue to contact him
    > if he has offered you some help. I do *not* think he will see this
    > as being "bugged". IMHO.


    Hehe, but anyway I don't like to behave like that
    By the way, if he's reading this thread, it may be a reminder for him if
    he's still interested in helping.
    In any case since you told me he's such an expert on those machines, I
    will contact him again, I'd like to know as much as possible about these
    systems, maybe he has some interesting information.

    > This sounds like a worthy project and one that might someday benefit
    > me also.


    That is definitely one of the reasons for doing such a project

    > If I come across some who can help, I will contact you.


    Ok, thanks.
    By the way in my Zenith 120 page the disk image I made today is already
    available, just in case if anyone will ever need it. That's all I can
    do,at least for now.

    Bye
    Andrea

    --
    http://myretrocomputing.altervista.org/

  3. Re: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Herb Johnson wrote:

    > I hate to post anything that would seem to be rude to Andrea. She is a
    > person of good will.


    Thanks Herb
    But I have to correct you: I know it may sound ridiculous but actually I
    am a male. In Italy you will never find a girl named Andrea, only males
    get that name here. Also, remember that if a female Andrea will ever
    study greek, she may find out that her name has an inappropriate
    meaning: in fact it comes from greek Andros, that means "male". You can
    still find it with its real meaning in words such androginy and so on.

    > and she kindly lists my Web site as a relevant link.


    Of course, and I noticed you also linked my page. Thanks

    > But as I've already posted, I have for some years offered a set of
    > Z-100 system disks to "the community". They are created ON a Z-120,
    > and include format and other programs, as I posted in this thread a few
    > days ago. However, what I offer is NOT FREE. I charge for my time, my
    > space (for manuals, computers), my Web expenses, and of course for
    > shipping and packing costs. I have some free stuff as well, and the
    > contents of my Web site are freely available yet also require my time
    > and effort.


    You offer a valuable service to the community, that's one of the reason
    why I linked your site. Your pages have lots of info.
    But in any case I am not interested in buying Z100 disks from you or
    from someone else, it's not a matter of money, it's a matter of beliefs,
    that's why it seemed I didn't understand your advertising till now.

    While I still believe that ancient hardware has a real value and when
    you part from it you don't have it anymore, old software is different,
    you don't loose it, you just copy it: what you loose is just time and
    the price of the disk.
    I was and I am ready to pay for shipping charges/disks and a symbolic
    fee for the job in the order of 10$ but nothing more, I am looking for
    someone who wants to help me, not someone who wants to help me and get
    money for that. This is probably the reason why my Z-120 has been turned
    off till today and why it will probably stay that way for long, but I
    don't mind it, there are more important things.
    Maybe someone with my same attitude will make disk-images available
    on-line.
    This old software is in most of the cases abandonware or has no
    commercial value anymore, so nobody gets hurt from those copies, still
    getting money for "illegal" disks copies sounds a little strange to me,
    don't take it in a bad way Herb, that's just my personal opinion and
    since you made yours quite clear, I want to do the same: I'm not saying
    you should do it for free.
    Of course my time, like yours and everyone's else, has a price in many
    cases. You can be sure I would do nothing at work if they weren't paying
    me. If I sell an old computer I ask for money, they can be gifts only
    for close friends, for a lot of reasons I am not going to list.
    But I don't ask money to my family or for friendship, for love, for
    writing this post or talking at the bar, and I hope none of us does.
    There are some activities that are priceless, in the real sense of the
    word and whenever money gets into them, they get somehow spoiled. I
    think the same could appy to my retrocomputing hobby, so I don't ask for
    money and I look for people that don't ask for money too.

    Dealing with old computers is a hobby to me and when I got the chance to
    help someone and more important *if* I wanted to do it, I did it for
    free: money comes in my pocket from other sources, and I don't want to
    feel forced to do anything just because I wrote I will do it for some
    money.

    In the past I had the chance of helping some italian guys to get some
    software that they needed for Apple III and you may know that there is
    very very little software available online, so I made disk images and
    they are available for the community. They were freely available on my
    site but there is no more everything. I kept out some really valuable
    data cause if someone wants it, he can get it from me, but has to do
    something in exchange not for me but for the community, that's what I
    ask.
    The other solution i.e. doing real disk copies of this Apple III
    software for everyone asking it was going to be too expensive both for
    them and for me: getting nowadays unavaliable 5,25'' disks, copying them
    on the real machine, testing the disks, go to the post office...too much
    hassle and impossible to do for free if not for a strict number of
    people: you make disk images only one time, they are more practical and
    are forever, for everyone, even for me just in case my real disks fail.
    This is my attitude, yours is different, again don't take it wrong, I
    still think you are doing a useful service to the community even if it's
    not free.

    > He's been
    > generous with his time and with his prior work. But that, and similar
    > freely provided works or archives by others, do not mean that
    > everything old or out of use should ALSO be free.


    That's right, people are different.
    Anyway if I get the Zenith software I will make disk images and I will
    make them freely available since they are unavailable anywhere today, as
    I've already done with my only disk, this is my way of living this
    hobby.
    If you will want to share this service to the community I will be glad
    to send you those files to so that you can host them also on your site.
    If you know any reason for not doing that just let me know, I always
    appreciate other people's opinions, expecially when those people are
    older and have more knowledge than me.

    Regards

    Andrea



    --
    http://myretrocomputing.altervista.org/

  4. Re: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    If I were to make a complete set of disks and ship them to you, I'd have
    to take about an hour to go to the post office and fill out a bunch of
    customs forms, and it would take the better part of an hour. For an
    international shipment, the "cost of shipping" is a lot more than $10.


    Andrea wrote:

    > Herb Johnson wrote:
    >
    >
    >>I hate to post anything that would seem to be rude to Andrea. She is a
    >>person of good will.

    >
    >
    > Thanks Herb
    > But I have to correct you: I know it may sound ridiculous but actually I
    > am a male. In Italy you will never find a girl named Andrea, only males
    > get that name here. Also, remember that if a female Andrea will ever
    > study greek, she may find out that her name has an inappropriate
    > meaning: in fact it comes from greek Andros, that means "male". You can
    > still find it with its real meaning in words such androginy and so on.
    >
    >
    >>and she kindly lists my Web site as a relevant link.

    >
    >
    > Of course, and I noticed you also linked my page. Thanks
    >
    >
    >>But as I've already posted, I have for some years offered a set of
    >>Z-100 system disks to "the community". They are created ON a Z-120,
    >>and include format and other programs, as I posted in this thread a few
    >>days ago. However, what I offer is NOT FREE. I charge for my time, my
    >>space (for manuals, computers), my Web expenses, and of course for
    >>shipping and packing costs. I have some free stuff as well, and the
    >>contents of my Web site are freely available yet also require my time
    >>and effort.

    >
    >
    > You offer a valuable service to the community, that's one of the reason
    > why I linked your site. Your pages have lots of info.
    > But in any case I am not interested in buying Z100 disks from you or
    > from someone else, it's not a matter of money, it's a matter of beliefs,
    > that's why it seemed I didn't understand your advertising till now.
    >
    > While I still believe that ancient hardware has a real value and when
    > you part from it you don't have it anymore, old software is different,
    > you don't loose it, you just copy it: what you loose is just time and
    > the price of the disk.
    > I was and I am ready to pay for shipping charges/disks and a symbolic
    > fee for the job in the order of 10$ but nothing more, I am looking for
    > someone who wants to help me, not someone who wants to help me and get
    > money for that. This is probably the reason why my Z-120 has been turned
    > off till today and why it will probably stay that way for long, but I
    > don't mind it, there are more important things.
    > Maybe someone with my same attitude will make disk-images available
    > on-line.
    > This old software is in most of the cases abandonware or has no
    > commercial value anymore, so nobody gets hurt from those copies, still
    > getting money for "illegal" disks copies sounds a little strange to me,
    > don't take it in a bad way Herb, that's just my personal opinion and
    > since you made yours quite clear, I want to do the same: I'm not saying
    > you should do it for free.
    > Of course my time, like yours and everyone's else, has a price in many
    > cases. You can be sure I would do nothing at work if they weren't paying
    > me. If I sell an old computer I ask for money, they can be gifts only
    > for close friends, for a lot of reasons I am not going to list.
    > But I don't ask money to my family or for friendship, for love, for
    > writing this post or talking at the bar, and I hope none of us does.
    > There are some activities that are priceless, in the real sense of the
    > word and whenever money gets into them, they get somehow spoiled. I
    > think the same could appy to my retrocomputing hobby, so I don't ask for
    > money and I look for people that don't ask for money too.
    >
    > Dealing with old computers is a hobby to me and when I got the chance to
    > help someone and more important *if* I wanted to do it, I did it for
    > free: money comes in my pocket from other sources, and I don't want to
    > feel forced to do anything just because I wrote I will do it for some
    > money.
    >
    > In the past I had the chance of helping some italian guys to get some
    > software that they needed for Apple III and you may know that there is
    > very very little software available online, so I made disk images and
    > they are available for the community. They were freely available on my
    > site but there is no more everything. I kept out some really valuable
    > data cause if someone wants it, he can get it from me, but has to do
    > something in exchange not for me but for the community, that's what I
    > ask.
    > The other solution i.e. doing real disk copies of this Apple III
    > software for everyone asking it was going to be too expensive both for
    > them and for me: getting nowadays unavaliable 5,25'' disks, copying them
    > on the real machine, testing the disks, go to the post office...too much
    > hassle and impossible to do for free if not for a strict number of
    > people: you make disk images only one time, they are more practical and
    > are forever, for everyone, even for me just in case my real disks fail.
    > This is my attitude, yours is different, again don't take it wrong, I
    > still think you are doing a useful service to the community even if it's
    > not free.
    >
    >
    >>He's been
    >>generous with his time and with his prior work. But that, and similar
    >>freely provided works or archives by others, do not mean that
    >>everything old or out of use should ALSO be free.

    >
    >
    > That's right, people are different.
    > Anyway if I get the Zenith software I will make disk images and I will
    > make them freely available since they are unavailable anywhere today, as
    > I've already done with my only disk, this is my way of living this
    > hobby.
    > If you will want to share this service to the community I will be glad
    > to send you those files to so that you can host them also on your site.
    > If you know any reason for not doing that just let me know, I always
    > appreciate other people's opinions, expecially when those people are
    > older and have more knowledge than me.
    >
    > Regards
    >
    > Andrea
    >
    >
    >


  5. Re: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Barry Watzman wrote:

    > If I were to make a complete set of disks and ship them to you, I'd have
    > to take about an hour to go to the post office and fill out a bunch of
    > customs forms, and it would take the better part of an hour. For an
    > international shipment, the "cost of shipping" is a lot more than $10.
    >

    By the way, shipping charges for a 5lbs parcel to Italy is 20$ according
    to USPS website. A Few disks is even less. I already wrote that I am
    ready to pay for shipping charges and mass storage costs whatever the
    price is, and that 10$ is a symbolic extra, just a sign of appreciation
    for the good will of the helper.
    From your post it looks like I want people to send me disks for 10$ all
    inclusive and that's not true.
    By the way since your condition is quite particular, I understand you
    live far from a post office, I'd never ask to do this for me, that would
    be unreasonable.
    But maybe you're willing to help me anyway and the next time you have to
    go to the post office for other reasons you can also send me a couple of
    disks.
    it depends on your will to help. I made my request clear, you know what
    I want, you know what I offer and that's for sure not money. My request
    is not for everybody, I just hope I am not the only one around with this
    attitude otherwise my computer will just boot that eprom programmer I
    received today. I understand your point of view and I don't criticize
    it, somehow I know we are both right
    Anyway I'd never ask you to go through so much trouble for my disks.
    There is a much better solution if you want: you could still make some
    disks images for the community and share them on the internet, if
    ImageDisk works also with your disks. I would appreciate for sure and I
    know it would be a great service for many other users out there.
    Again, this is not for everybody.

    Regards

    Andrea


  6. Re: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Barry Watzman wrote:

    > For an
    > international shipment, the "cost of shipping" is a lot more than $10.


    Sorry Barry, I just realized the meaning of this sentence but I've
    already replied to the message...ah, my english is far from perfect
    You meant that the "cost of shipping" is not only the price of the USPS
    service but also your time, and it's worth more than 10$. That's OK.

    Regards

    Andrea


    --
    http://myretrocomputing.altervista.org/

  7. Re: [OT] Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    >Hi Dave, I have some news about my situation, I've thought to reply to
    >your message since you are the one of the persons to thank for this


    >Today finally I received a disk from the previous owner of my Z-120,
    >that's the only disk that survived and luckily it works. It boots CP/M
    >and there is a eprom program and utilities on it. So at least now I know
    >my computer is really in good working conditions, except for drive B
    >that doesn't read...
    >Since the main problem with this machine is that doesn't seem to be any
    >disk image around after trying some programs I used ImageDisk and it
    >works! I succesfully made an image of my disk and succesfully tranfered
    >it back to another 5,25" disk...and this disk works on the real Z-120!


    >So at least now I know there is a way to make disk images of the Zenith
    >software, let's see if someone will make some of them, I think that
    >putting them on-line would be a great thing for the community, I know
    >for sure I am not the only one in Europe looking for some software for
    >the Zenith computer.


    >So Dave, thank you again so much for developing that great piece of
    >software.


    Hi Andrea,

    Thats excellent news! - I'm glad to hear that the system is booting.

    As you may know, I am maintaining a site dedicated to preserving
    system/boot disk images for classic systems - it's still small, but it's
    growing. I do not currently have images for the original Z-100 system
    (as Barry pointed out, the Z-100 PC is not the same thing). I would
    very much like to receive copies of any Z-100 disk images that you
    make - starting with the one that you have working. If you would send
    me a copy of the image, that would be great! - contact info is available
    on my web page.

    Regards,
    Dave

    --
    Dunfield Development Services http://www.dunfield.com
    Low cost software development tools for embedded systems
    Software/firmware development services Fax:613-256-5821


  8. Re: [OT] Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Dave Dunfield wrote:

    > If you would send
    > me a copy of the image, that would be great! - contact info is available
    > on my web page.


    I've just sent you the image to the email address available at your
    parse.com website.

    Andrea

    --
    http://myretrocomputing.altervista.org/

  9. Re: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Andrea wrote:
    > Barry Watzman wrote:
    >
    > > If I were to make a complete set of disks and ship them to you, I'd have
    > > to take about an hour to go to the post office and fill out a bunch of
    > > customs forms, and it would take the better part of an hour. For an
    > > international shipment, the "cost of shipping" is a lot more than $10.
    > >

    > By the way, shipping charges for a 5lbs parcel to Italy is 20$ according
    > to USPS website. A Few disks is even less. I already wrote that I am
    > ready to pay for shipping charges and mass storage costs whatever the
    > price is, and that 10$ is a symbolic extra, just a sign of appreciation
    > for the good will of the helper.


    >From the usps.gov Web site, for a 5 lbs package from the United States

    to Italy, in US dollars, I've just cut and pasted the following:

    *Airmail Parcel Post* *4 - 10 Days* *$28.70*
    *Economy (Surface) Parcel Post* *4 - 6 Weeks* *$19.25*

    A one-pound envelope would be $9.15 by Airmail, $4.10 by surface post.
    The US post office restricts the width of an envelope; if it is too
    wide they call it a package and charge accordingly.

    > While I still believe that ancient hardware has a real value and
    > when you part from it you don't have it anymore, old software is
    > different, you don't loose it, you just copy it: what you loose is
    > just time and the price of the disk....


    > I was and I am ready to pay for shipping charges/disks
    > and a symbolic fee for the job in the order of 10$ but nothing more,
    > I am looking for someone who wants to help me, not someone
    > who wants to help me and get money for that.


    I spent a couple of hours today, trying to come up with a
    straightforward response to this attitude. Any response I come up with,
    becomes an explanation of economics or an explanation of what it takes
    to provide 20 or 30-year-old software (and manuals for that matter).
    And then I have to come up with some argument about how free is bad,
    and paying for something is good - which is about as easy as arguing
    against candy with a kid.

    But I give up.Those who have a clue about the cost of doing something
    like this, already understand. Andrea, if it was true that someone
    COULD just click a mouse a few times and give you a copy, you'd have
    one now. And no doubt, if you ask around enough someone will do you a
    favor. But the fact that not every system disk is online already makes
    my "economic" case that when stuff like this is free, you eventually
    bring its worth to zero and it will become unavailable because no one
    will spend time on it, or bother to keep it around.

    But what I want to post in this particular thread, is that it is
    deceptive by Andrea to say "I can't get these disks" when in fact he
    CAN - he just has to pay something for physical copies to be made with
    now-scarce hardware, and then sent from the US to Italy, AND something
    more for the time and effort and ability for doing so.

    In addition, I object to the notion that "the community" is ONLY served
    by those who offer free disk images, free software, and so forth. I
    SERVE THE COMMUNITY TOO. I've done it for years, before the Internet
    and cheap computing. I do it today, despite these notions about "free"
    versus "paid for". But someday not too far away, I'll stop doing even
    this bit of work. Then what will be left will "free" software and
    "lost" software, irrespective of opinions about economics or how to
    serve "the community".

    Herb Johnson


  10. Re: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    I mailed a CD to Germany a few months back for about $1.65. It is not worth
    the cost and trouble to collect for that.

    Don

    "Herb Johnson" wrote in message
    news:1146770400.659744.87400@j73g2000cwa.googlegro ups.com...
    > Andrea wrote:
    >> Barry Watzman wrote:
    >>
    >> > If I were to make a complete set of disks and ship them to you, I'd
    >> > have
    >> > to take about an hour to go to the post office and fill out a bunch of
    >> > customs forms, and it would take the better part of an hour. For an
    >> > international shipment, the "cost of shipping" is a lot more than $10.
    >> >

    >> By the way, shipping charges for a 5lbs parcel to Italy is 20$ according
    >> to USPS website. A Few disks is even less. I already wrote that I am
    >> ready to pay for shipping charges and mass storage costs whatever the
    >> price is, and that 10$ is a symbolic extra, just a sign of appreciation
    >> for the good will of the helper.

    >
    >>From the usps.gov Web site, for a 5 lbs package from the United States

    > to Italy, in US dollars, I've just cut and pasted the following:
    >
    > *Airmail Parcel Post* *4 - 10 Days* *$28.70*
    > *Economy (Surface) Parcel Post* *4 - 6 Weeks* *$19.25*
    >
    > A one-pound envelope would be $9.15 by Airmail, $4.10 by surface post.
    > The US post office restricts the width of an envelope; if it is too
    > wide they call it a package and charge accordingly.
    >
    >> While I still believe that ancient hardware has a real value and
    >> when you part from it you don't have it anymore, old software is
    >> different, you don't loose it, you just copy it: what you loose is
    >> just time and the price of the disk....

    >
    >> I was and I am ready to pay for shipping charges/disks
    >> and a symbolic fee for the job in the order of 10$ but nothing more,
    >> I am looking for someone who wants to help me, not someone
    >> who wants to help me and get money for that.

    >
    > I spent a couple of hours today, trying to come up with a
    > straightforward response to this attitude. Any response I come up with,
    > becomes an explanation of economics or an explanation of what it takes
    > to provide 20 or 30-year-old software (and manuals for that matter).
    > And then I have to come up with some argument about how free is bad,
    > and paying for something is good - which is about as easy as arguing
    > against candy with a kid.
    >
    > But I give up.Those who have a clue about the cost of doing something
    > like this, already understand. Andrea, if it was true that someone
    > COULD just click a mouse a few times and give you a copy, you'd have
    > one now. And no doubt, if you ask around enough someone will do you a
    > favor. But the fact that not every system disk is online already makes
    > my "economic" case that when stuff like this is free, you eventually
    > bring its worth to zero and it will become unavailable because no one
    > will spend time on it, or bother to keep it around.
    >
    > But what I want to post in this particular thread, is that it is
    > deceptive by Andrea to say "I can't get these disks" when in fact he
    > CAN - he just has to pay something for physical copies to be made with
    > now-scarce hardware, and then sent from the US to Italy, AND something
    > more for the time and effort and ability for doing so.
    >
    > In addition, I object to the notion that "the community" is ONLY served
    > by those who offer free disk images, free software, and so forth. I
    > SERVE THE COMMUNITY TOO. I've done it for years, before the Internet
    > and cheap computing. I do it today, despite these notions about "free"
    > versus "paid for". But someday not too far away, I'll stop doing even
    > this bit of work. Then what will be left will "free" software and
    > "lost" software, irrespective of opinions about economics or how to
    > serve "the community".
    >
    > Herb Johnson
    >




  11. Re: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Herb Johnson wrote:
    > Any response I come up with,
    > becomes an explanation of economics or an explanation of what it takes
    > to provide 20 or 30-year-old software


    Economics is something I can understand, I live in this world like you
    afterall

    > Those who have a clue about the cost of doing something
    > like this, already understand.


    Hey Herb, I understand, though I don't share the same point of view on
    that.
    I also have old software that I bought 20 years ago but I think that
    admitting that I had to keep it in a dry, not too cold, not too hot
    place for years, do some backups from time to time doesn't oblige me to
    give it away for money. If you think you deserve that kind of reward, go
    ahead, that's your right, I am not here to blame you, you do a
    remarkable work for the community, paid or not, we are just talking
    about different attitudes. Probably there are many reasons for that
    difference.

    > if it was true that someone
    > COULD just click a mouse a few times and give you a copy, you'd have
    > one now.


    I am quite sure about that.
    But I remember another post in this thread in which Donald Harris said
    that he used to have a cd with z-100 disks images and he also gave a
    copy to Barry Watzman, who replied that he still has it but he knows no
    way to send images back to a disk. But I am sure that Barry has a good
    reason for not sending me some of those images.

    > And no doubt, if you ask around enough someone will do you a
    > favor.


    Yes, I know that what I ask for is somehow a kind of favor. Everybody's
    time is valuable, mine, yours...everyone decides what to do about that,
    sometimes someone gives it for free, sometimes someone doesn't...that's
    up to the person.

    > But the fact that not every system disk is online already makes
    > my "economic" case that when stuff like this is free, you eventually
    > bring its worth to zero and it will become unavailable because no one
    > will spend time on it, or bother to keep it around.


    I am sorry but maybe I don't understand. Are you saying that the stuff
    preserved by you, for example, is somehow still available because it's
    not free and if it becomes free then it won't be available anymore cause
    its value becomes 0?
    I see the economic side of the thing is (the most?) important for you.
    But its value would be 0 only from a monetary point of view. That's for
    sure not the only one and not the most important one for me.
    But how can you be sure that freeing anything from money makes it
    eventually unavailable?
    There is so much software, resources, hardware projects, schematics,
    manuals and so on available for free online for many major systems such
    as Apple II, Commodore 64, TRS-80, old game systems...so after all this
    time, why is it still available? If you're right it should have become
    unavailable. It's commercial value is 0 but the interest of people and
    the efforts of some individuals keeps the system fully alive, there is
    no need of money to make it work.
    Again I see things in a different way from you: whenever you make
    something widely and easily available that stuff is used by people that
    "need" it, it can develop culture, interests and so on...I believe in
    free culture.
    Of course Zenith stuff will never reach major system availabilty and so
    on, there are very few Zenith Z100 users around compared to Apple II
    users...but still there are. We are already 2 guys from Europe now
    looking for this Z100 software, as far as I know the other one decided
    to pay for someone's time since there is no other way to get it.
    If I misuderstood what you wrote I am sorry, sometimes it happens to me
    when I read/write in another language

    > But what I want to post in this particular thread, is that it is
    > deceptive by Andrea to say "I can't get these disks" when in fact he
    > CAN - he just has to pay something more for the time and effort and
    > ability for doing so.


    You're definitely right, when you're right I have no problem to admit
    it. But I think my message was clear from the beginning, I deliberately
    ignored your offer cause I was not interested in your conditions.

    > In addition, I object to the notion that "the community" is ONLY served
    > by those who offer free disk images, free software, and so forth. I
    > SERVE THE COMMUNITY TOO. I've done it for years, before the Internet
    > and cheap computing.


    Yes you do serve the community too. As far as I know you do it in a very
    good way, I have no direct experience with you but someone who wrote
    also in this thread told me good things about you. Again, you're not the
    "bad" guy, like I am not the "good" one or a victim. I can be a "bad"
    guy, somehow: there is some software that's free on my site, there is
    something that you have to ask for. That's something I don't know other
    ways to get it, that's something more valuable (I think I could ask for
    much money) than Zenith boot disks. I don't want to make a case about
    the nature if this stuff, I will not tell what it is. I decided to make
    this stuff available, just like you make yours available, but we have
    different ways.
    That stuff is free, but only to whom I like and that's not easy, he
    should share my same ideas. One day if I will change my ideas, it will
    be available to everyone, even to people I don't "like".
    If you were the owner of that stuff probably it would be more widely
    available since you just ask for money, you don't use other ways make a
    selection of people. Someone with money would get it for sure from you,
    from me, probably not
    I don't know exactly what you did in the past, when "Internet and cheap
    computing" was still to come, but you can't expect that things stay the
    same forever. Things develop. What you did before was truly remarkable
    if that was what you still do today, really. Back in those days there
    was no other way just real disks, snail mail, packages, photocopies and
    so on, life was thougher Today your way looks a little old fashioned
    IMHO, though it's still a valuable service to the community. Just my
    personal point of view.
    With the Internet there is so much we could do and better. There is
    always space for improvement.

    > But someday not too far away, I'll stop doing even
    > this bit of work.


    I hope that day will be far away instead, really. Though I decided to
    not take any benefits from your services I am sure there are a lot of
    persons that do, so it's a good thing, free or not.
    When that day will come I hope someone will take your place or you will
    decide to make all your software/manuals stuff widely available in other
    ways, it's always bad whenever something is lost.

    I think there is place for anyone, that my way is complementary to
    yours, as long there are both ways there is more choice, diversity is a
    value in most of the cases, not something to fight, this is no
    exception.
    You are older than me, that's a good reason to respect you. You have
    more experience, more knowledge, still I think this is a good chance to
    confront our positions, I hope I made it clear I was not here to argue
    but to talk.

    Regards

    Andrea


  12. Re: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Andrea has provided a very substantial reply, and has done it with good
    will. Thank you. Also he's made a point that he and I speak different
    languages, and so there may be
    some misunderstandings or confusion - that's a good point.

    This is otherwise an old issue, about the value of "free" and the
    problems that "free" has
    in the world of providing and preserving old software, old documents,
    and in this case old system disks. Many people consider these
    worthless, some still want these but not to pay for them, and a few
    will pay something depending on their needs. While "free" would seem to
    provide something for all these kinds of people; I can make a case that
    "free" has consequences which means some of this old stuff will be
    lost, and some of it will not be "available" but not easily used.
    That's because so few will bother with stuff worth zero, that SOME of
    it will be lost, and some of it will not be useable even if saved.

    But it's a long case and a long post. It's also a kind of explanation
    for why I put a value
    on what I do - an economic value - and so I ask others to pay me
    accordingly. I'm going to consider this further and post a response on
    my Web site, one that I can edit for clarity and use again as needed.
    I'll post a link here when I've done that.

    But one thing I want to say up front. I do not expect any "reward" for
    what I have done, as Andrea has suggested. What I expect is to be paid
    a modest sum for the SERVICES I OFFER. Some of those services are to
    provide that diskette that Andrea says is just a matter of copying
    something and mailing something, without losing the original. But some
    of those services are to do that, year after year, for many kinds of
    old computer items and for many requests. To have that stuff available,
    and to let people know that. And, to make myself available to respond
    to requests, to maintain a Web site, and to write posts like this to
    explain that "free" has consequences, not all of them good. My time and
    effort are not "free", but the items I provide are considered by many
    to have no economic value or economic cost to provide, and so they
    want them for free. That is a conflict, and it''s not unique to me or
    to Andrea.

    herb johnson

    Herbert R. Johnson, New Jersey USA
    web site
    domain mirror
    my email address: hjohnson AAT retrotechnology DOTT com
    if no reply, wait & try: herbjohnson ATT comcast DOTT net
    "Herb's Stuff": old Mac, SGI, 8-inch floppy drives
    S-100 IMSAI Altair computers, docs, by "Dr. S-100"


  13. Re: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    *** silly top-posting fixed ***
    Donald Harris wrote:
    > "Herb Johnson" wrote in message
    > > Andrea wrote:
    > >> Barry Watzman wrote:
    > >>
    > >> > If I were to make a complete set of disks and ship them to you, I'd
    > >> > have
    > >> > to take about an hour to go to the post office and fill out a bunch of
    > >> > customs forms, and it would take the better part of an hour. For an
    > >> > international shipment, the "cost of shipping" is a lot more than $10.
    > >> >
    > >> By the way, shipping charges for a 5lbs parcel to Italy is 20$ according
    > >> to USPS website. A Few disks is even less. I already wrote that I am
    > >> ready to pay for shipping charges and mass storage costs whatever the
    > >> price is, and that 10$ is a symbolic extra, just a sign of appreciation
    > >> for the good will of the helper.

    > >
    > >>From the usps.gov Web site, for a 5 lbs package from the United States

    > > to Italy, in US dollars, I've just cut and pasted the following:
    > >
    > > *Airmail Parcel Post* *4 - 10 Days* *$28.70*
    > > *Economy (Surface) Parcel Post* *4 - 6 Weeks* *$19.25*
    > >
    > > A one-pound envelope would be $9.15 by Airmail, $4.10 by surface post.
    > > The US post office restricts the width of an envelope; if it is too
    > > wide they call it a package and charge accordingly.
    > >
    > >> While I still believe that ancient hardware has a real value and
    > >> when you part from it you don't have it anymore, old software is
    > >> different, you don't loose it, you just copy it: what you loose is
    > >> just time and the price of the disk....

    > >
    > >> I was and I am ready to pay for shipping charges/disks
    > >> and a symbolic fee for the job in the order of 10$ but nothing more,
    > >> I am looking for someone who wants to help me, not someone
    > >> who wants to help me and get money for that.

    > >
    > > I spent a couple of hours today, trying to come up with a
    > > straightforward response to this attitude. Any response I come up with,
    > > becomes an explanation of economics or an explanation of what it takes
    > > to provide 20 or 30-year-old software (and manuals for that matter).
    > > And then I have to come up with some argument about how free is bad,
    > > and paying for something is good - which is about as easy as arguing
    > > against candy with a kid.
    > >
    > > But I give up.Those who have a clue about the cost of doing something
    > > like this, already understand. Andrea, if it was true that someone
    > > COULD just click a mouse a few times and give you a copy, you'd have
    > > one now. And no doubt, if you ask around enough someone will do you a
    > > favor. But the fact that not every system disk is online already makes
    > > my "economic" case that when stuff like this is free, you eventually
    > > bring its worth to zero and it will become unavailable because no one
    > > will spend time on it, or bother to keep it around.
    > >
    > > But what I want to post in this particular thread, is that it is
    > > deceptive by Andrea to say "I can't get these disks" when in fact he
    > > CAN - he just has to pay something for physical copies to be made with
    > > now-scarce hardware, and then sent from the US to Italy, AND something
    > > more for the time and effort and ability for doing so.
    > >
    > > In addition, I object to the notion that "the community" is ONLY served
    > > by those who offer free disk images, free software, and so forth. I
    > > SERVE THE COMMUNITY TOO. I've done it for years, before the Internet
    > > and cheap computing. I do it today, despite these notions about "free"
    > > versus "paid for". But someday not too far away, I'll stop doing even
    > > this bit of work. Then what will be left will "free" software and
    > > "lost" software, irrespective of opinions about economics or how to
    > > serve "the community".

    >
    > I mailed a CD to Germany a few months back for about $1.65. It is not worth
    > the cost and trouble to collect for that.


    So what? Herb's point is that TANSTAAFL applies. You are free to
    do what you wish, as is he. If he had a 1% override on all Windows
    software sales, he might be able to afford to provide the service
    out of the goodness of his heart. As it is, there are costs and
    time involved. You are free to not take advantages of his
    services, and such failure will probably not result in visits from
    jack-booted goons followed by transportation to the Gitmo-Gulag.
    You might even escape torture.

    --
    "If you want to post a followup via groups.google.com, don't use
    the broken "Reply" link at the bottom of the article. Click on
    "show options" at the top of the article, then click on the
    "Reply" at the bottom of the article headers." - Keith Thompson
    More details at:
    Also see


  14. Re: [OT] Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Hi Andrea,

    Donald Harris wrote:
    > "Andrea" wrote in message
    > news:1heh05r.g2vkck1wd5og0N%myemail@fattimi.ei...
    >
    >>Hello,
    >>I had already posted this request almost a couple of months ago but
    >>unluckly I haven't reach my goal, so here I am back again...I am sorry
    >>if this kind of request may sound annoying, I promise this is the last
    >>try then I will give up
    >>I acquired a dead Zenith Z-120 and after resurrecting it I am looking
    >>for some software to see the machine capabilities, as far as I know the
    >>only way is to find someone that will actually copy some disks and mail
    >>them to me in Italy, since there seems to be no other way...I am ready
    >>to pay shipping charges of course and a quite symbolic price for the
    >>job, if this is requested. I'd really like to see the Zenith do
    >>something more than the hardware test, so many thanks in advantage to
    >>anyone who will try to help.
    >>
    >>Regards
    >>
    >>Andrea
    >>
    >>--
    >>http://myretrocomputing.altervista.org/

    >
    >
    > Andréa.
    >
    > A late friend made a CD with disk images. One of the directories on that CD
    > is Zenith-100. Within that directory are several subdirectories, including
    > CP/M 2.2, CP/M 86, etc. I can't find my copy right now, but I remember
    > sending a copy to Barry Watzman for archiving. He might be able to find his
    > copy and help you.
    >
    > Don
    >
    >


    sorry for jumping into this thread after so many discussions.
    Long (?) ago, Don send me the mentioned CD of the late Rlee
    Peters. This was his (Don's) words in a mail to me:

    "Before he died, I promised Rlee Peters that I would try
    to find a home for most of his S-100 and CP/M stuff.
    His effort in creating the CD allows him to live on and
    help others."

    If Don agrees, I can send you a ZIP file with the contents
    of the mentioned ZENITH-100 directory.

    Greetings,

    Uwe.




  15. Re: [OT] Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Uwe Nass wrote:

    > sorry for jumping into this thread after so many discussions.
    > Long (?) ago, Don send me the mentioned CD of the late Rlee
    > Peters. This was his (Don's) words in a mail to me:
    >
    > "Before he died, I promised Rlee Peters that I would try
    > to find a home for most of his S-100 and CP/M stuff.
    > His effort in creating the CD allows him to live on and
    > help others."
    >
    > If Don agrees, I can send you a ZIP file with the contents
    > of the mentioned ZENITH-100 directory.
    >
    > Greetings,
    >
    > Uwe.


    That would be great, if you get the authorization you can send it to
    this email address: gamete2005@libero.it
    Thanks in advance

    Andrea

    --
    http://myretrocomputing.altervista.org/

  16. Re: [OT] Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Uwe,

    Please pass the files on to Andrea. Rlee would have liked to see his work
    used.

    Don

    "Uwe Nass" wrote in message
    news:e3f6nq$kj6$1@f1node01.rhrz.uni-bonn.de...
    Hi Andrea,

    Donald Harris wrote:
    > "Andrea" wrote in message
    > news:1heh05r.g2vkck1wd5og0N%myemail@fattimi.ei...
    >
    >>Hello,
    >>I had already posted this request almost a couple of months ago but
    >>unluckly I haven't reach my goal, so here I am back again...I am sorry
    >>if this kind of request may sound annoying, I promise this is the last
    >>try then I will give up
    >>I acquired a dead Zenith Z-120 and after resurrecting it I am looking
    >>for some software to see the machine capabilities, as far as I know the
    >>only way is to find someone that will actually copy some disks and mail
    >>them to me in Italy, since there seems to be no other way...I am ready
    >>to pay shipping charges of course and a quite symbolic price for the
    >>job, if this is requested. I'd really like to see the Zenith do
    >>something more than the hardware test, so many thanks in advantage to
    >>anyone who will try to help.
    >>
    >>Regards
    >>
    >>Andrea
    >>
    >>--
    >>http://myretrocomputing.altervista.org/

    >
    >
    > Andréa.
    >
    > A late friend made a CD with disk images. One of the directories on that
    > CD is Zenith-100. Within that directory are several subdirectories,
    > including CP/M 2.2, CP/M 86, etc. I can't find my copy right now, but I
    > remember sending a copy to Barry Watzman for archiving. He might be able
    > to find his copy and help you.
    >
    > Don
    >
    >


    sorry for jumping into this thread after so many discussions.
    Long (?) ago, Don send me the mentioned CD of the late Rlee
    Peters. This was his (Don's) words in a mail to me:

    "Before he died, I promised Rlee Peters that I would try
    to find a home for most of his S-100 and CP/M stuff.
    His effort in creating the CD allows him to live on and
    help others."

    If Don agrees, I can send you a ZIP file with the contents
    of the mentioned ZENITH-100 directory.

    Greetings,

    Uwe.





  17. Re: [OT] Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Hi Don,

    you are right, I think it would be in Rlee Peters mind. Today,
    I have sent the files to Italy.

    Greetings,

    Uwe.

    Donald Harris wrote:
    > Uwe,
    >
    > Please pass the files on to Andrea. Rlee would have liked to see his work
    > used.
    >
    > Don
    >
    > "Uwe Nass" wrote in message
    > news:e3f6nq$kj6$1@f1node01.rhrz.uni-bonn.de...
    > Hi Andrea,
    >
    > Donald Harris wrote:
    >
    >>"Andrea" wrote in message
    >>news:1heh05r.g2vkck1wd5og0N%myemail@fattimi.ei...
    >>
    >>
    >>>Hello,
    >>>I had already posted this request almost a couple of months ago but
    >>>unluckly I haven't reach my goal, so here I am back again...I am sorry
    >>>if this kind of request may sound annoying, I promise this is the last
    >>>try then I will give up
    >>>I acquired a dead Zenith Z-120 and after resurrecting it I am looking
    >>>for some software to see the machine capabilities, as far as I know the
    >>>only way is to find someone that will actually copy some disks and mail
    >>>them to me in Italy, since there seems to be no other way...I am ready
    >>>to pay shipping charges of course and a quite symbolic price for the
    >>>job, if this is requested. I'd really like to see the Zenith do
    >>>something more than the hardware test, so many thanks in advantage to
    >>>anyone who will try to help.
    >>>
    >>>Regards
    >>>
    >>>Andrea
    >>>
    >>>--
    >>>http://myretrocomputing.altervista.org/

    >>
    >>
    >>Andréa.
    >>
    >>A late friend made a CD with disk images. One of the directories on that
    >>CD is Zenith-100. Within that directory are several subdirectories,
    >>including CP/M 2.2, CP/M 86, etc. I can't find my copy right now, but I
    >>remember sending a copy to Barry Watzman for archiving. He might be able
    >>to find his copy and help you.
    >>
    >>Don
    >>
    >>

    >
    >
    > sorry for jumping into this thread after so many discussions.
    > Long (?) ago, Don send me the mentioned CD of the late Rlee
    > Peters. This was his (Don's) words in a mail to me:
    >
    > "Before he died, I promised Rlee Peters that I would try
    > to find a home for most of his S-100 and CP/M stuff.
    > His effort in creating the CD allows him to live on and
    > help others."
    >
    > If Don agrees, I can send you a ZIP file with the contents
    > of the mentioned ZENITH-100 directory.
    >
    > Greetings,
    >
    > Uwe.
    >
    >
    >
    >



  18. Free .vs. paid - was: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Just a quick follow-up on the issue of "free" versus "paid".

    One very good reason for charging a modest amount for
    your services has nothing at all to do with the money ...

    It is simply that it will dramatically reduce the amount
    of work you are "expected" to do. And by controlling
    the price, you can control the amount of work you are
    being asked to perform.

    As a case in point - I maintain my "old computers" site
    as a free service. I have several reasons for doing this,
    however because I offer this content for free, more and
    more people are assuming that I am providing a free
    old computer consulting service.

    Every day, I receive several - sometimes dozens of
    requests for help with an old computer in my mailbox.
    Some recent examples:

    - Can you take a photo of the AtariST floppy drive in the
    main unit (ie: please disassemble an ST, take photos
    and reassemble it - at least an hour of work).

    - Can you make some boot floppies for me (as all of
    my equipment is maintained in storage, this would
    also be an hour or more of work).

    - How much is my Apple II clone worth?

    - Can you help me find these chips?

    - How can I put a larger hardrive in this old laptop?

    - Where can I find a BIOS upgrade for this old laptop?

    - What kind of processor is in this old laptop - What is
    the latest version of windows that I can run on it?


    And my favorite of the week:

    - I haven't bothered to read the manuals you have
    posted on your site, can you tell me if they contain
    the answers to these questions.
    (Yes, he actually stated "I haven't read the manuals")


    And - on an ongoing basis, I am called upon to "read
    the ImageDisk manuals" to people who find it easier
    to email me than to read the documents or use the online
    help, and also to explain over and over again to people
    why their PC can't seem to read hard-sectored disks, or
    write single-density formats.


    By themselves, most of these questions wouldn't be a
    big deal, but once you begin answering several to many
    of them a day, the time spent begins to add-up, and before
    you know it, you are spending an hour or more a day on
    "free consulting" - this is on top of the effort I spend on
    building and maintaining the site and it's content.

    If this keeps up, you may see a statement on my "contact me"
    page that I am charging for email consultation ... I don't want to
    discourage the people who really my help from contacting me
    but I simply can't provide support for old PC laptops,
    "documentation reading" and "google search" services for
    people who could just as easily do this themselves.

    Dave

    --
    dave06a@ Collector of classic pre-PC computer systems.
    dunfield. If you have an old 8/16 bit non-PC system in need of a good
    com home, please contact me at email address on the left, or
    via contact link of this web site:
    http://www.classiccmp.org/dunfield/index.html


  19. Re: Free .vs. paid - was: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software

    Dave Dunfield wrote: [summary]

    > Just a quick follow-up on the issue of "free" versus "paid".
    >
    > One very good reason for charging a modest amount for
    > your services has nothing at all to do with the money ...
    > Every day, I receive several - sometimes dozens of
    > requests for help with an old computer in my mailbox.


    >.... before
    > you know it, [I'm] spending an hour or more a day on
    > "free consulting" - this is on top of the effort I spend on
    > building and maintaining the site and it's content.
    >
    > If this keeps up, you may see a statement on my "contact me"
    > page that I am charging for email consultation ... I don't want to
    > discourage the people who really [need] my help from contacting me
    > ...but I simply can't provide support for old PC laptops,
    > "documentation reading" and "google search" services for
    > people who could just as easily do this themselves.
    >
    > Dave


    This is very well put. Thank you, Dave!

    When I talk about the "economics" of "free" vs. paid, I don't just mean
    simply the exchange of money. I also mean the economic value of MY
    TIME. Dave gets real dollars for his time; and I'm sure he puts
    personal value on it as well. Even from the amateur computerist's point
    of view, Dave has to decide where even his "free" time is best used. I
    have to make the same calculations, for the same reasons; as do others
    of course.

    I see that, like me, he tries to make best use of the time and effort
    he puts in providing ACCESS to fundamental old computing "information",
    so that others can use THEIR TIME to read, review and otherwise use
    that information. "Information" includes manuals as well as files and,
    notibly in Dave's case and to his credit, boot disk images and the
    software to regenerate them, AND for NO CHARGE. This is a long way to
    underscore an old simple strategy once common to old computing: READ
    THE MANUALS.

    Put another way: an hour spent on listing several manuals for sale or
    to prepare one for download; becomes SEVERAL hours saved by SEVERAL
    people who read them. But an hour spent in answering an email only
    serves one person, probably once. That's the "economics" of time. In
    my case, I spent time once in acquiring manuals or software; I spend
    some time and cost per customer, in my service of photocopying it each
    time as well as in any discussion of use of such documents. My
    customers pay accordingly for those additional services. LIkewise, they
    save their OWN time in reading a manual, versus either asking others
    for the same info, or versus figuring out the hardware or software
    themselves. That's THEIR "economics" of time too.

    Dave and I have different economic models for what we do; but we both
    consider these sort of economics.

    Of course some people just don't think this way. They are not obliged
    to, but if they can't at least understand these considerations, they
    may find it hard to understand my actions or the actions and reactions
    of others. As Dave suggests, if too many people ask for too much
    without understanding this way of thinking, they will no longer get
    "free" services. This is just one way that "free" has negative
    consequences, as I've suggested in prior posts. I'll have more to say
    about that, another time.

    This discussion about persons who want help brings up a side issue
    which Dave referenced. Simply put, some people who ask for "help" are,
    in my experience, really asking for a conversation or a collaberation,
    or have other social motives. My primary goals are to help others HELP
    THEMSELVES TO USE this old technology, in a reasonably efficient
    manner. I try to be straightforward about this, to avoid confusing and
    even angry exchanges with those who have trouble with these issues.

    That's all the time I have today on this.

    Herb Johnson

    Herbert R. Johnson, New Jersey USA
    web site
    domain mirror
    my email address: hjohnson AAT retrotechnology DOTT com
    if no reply, try in a few days: herbjohnson ATT comcast DOTT net
    "Herb's Stuff": old Mac, SGI, 8-inch floppy drives
    S-100 IMSAI Altair computers, docs, by "Dr. S-100"


  20. Re: Free .vs. paid - was: Looking for some Zenith Z100 software


    > > Just a quick follow-up on the issue of "free" versus "paid".



    Unless you have a website upon whose entry is listed "What I Will and
    Will Not Do", people with questions are naturally going to gravitate
    towards those that have knowledge or materials.

    I have been in computer consulting since 1988, and daily encounter
    these same issues.

    Every request can be considered handled individually. But as a
    responder, you have to be honest from the start. You consider an
    incoming request, compare it against your internal list of "things I
    wish to provide to others", and reply accordingly. Replies need not
    be harsh, and the answers can widely vary. It is ESSENTIAL that you
    have your own purpose and services well-defined... because it is
    against these goals and definitions that you compare every incoming
    request.

    For instance if you don't want to do something at all: "Yea, what
    you're asking for isn't a service I provide at present." Repeat as
    often as necessary. Can also offer related alternative "but I can
    provide this manual...".

    Or if you are a consultant who would charge to do such, "What you're
    asking for isn't something I can do for free, but should you wish to
    hire me, my hourly rate is $x / hr."

    Sometimes people who will hire you later, will TEST you in the
    beginning... so you can never tell what that "freebie person" will
    become later on. But since the vast majority of people do not give
    back, that's why as a provider, honesty and forthrightness about what
    you can offer and how are imperative. By being openly, calmly, and
    politely honest about what you can provide, you obtain the truly good
    customer, and manage the freebie people where you want them. If, on
    the other hand, you hold back your true sentiment, indulging an
    inquiring customer for too long, then explode upon the customer later
    with your resentment, you only harm yourself.

    I have dealt with both Dave and Herb, and their ways of handling
    requests (or doing business), and what they have to offer, are
    different. Dave over an unusual span of time has been enormously
    helpful, such that I have endeavored to do him favors and buy his
    products whenever I can. It is important to give back to those who
    give, without them having to ask... even if it is at a later time.

    And my own experience with Herb found him to be best suited to
    experts or those who know exactly what they want of his products,
    because chances are, Herb has it and will handle it with great
    efficiency. Since I was a reborn newbie to the S-100 bus and CP/M at
    the time, Herb quickly became tired of my many confused and meddling
    questions revolving around how to get back into the S-100/CP/M world,
    to the point where we no longer do business. Not an ideal outcome
    but it happens. But, I succeeded in my goals without him.. in part to
    make the point that I could. So arguably, a good outcome! Which
    brings me to my last point: how to handle newcomers.

    A hobby can live on over generations, only by bringing in
    newcomers. Or a hobby can become a highly guarded and esoteric secret
    world -- a place where its few inhabitants feel extra special
    specifically because their world is exclusive, and becoming more rare.
    I know the feeling of both, as I'm sure you all do. There are
    advantages to both worlds. Some long for the days of the early
    Internet, for example... but despite all the downsides to the masses
    getting hold of it, there have been many, many advantages to the
    Internet becoming commercial and in nearly everyone's hands now.

    It takes an extraordinary person to have the patience for
    newcomers. The experts among us... Herb and Dave by example...
    almost by default of who they are and their public Internet presence
    bring it upon themselves to have some sort of newcomer handling
    procedure.. that is consistent with their greater vision for their
    hobby or profession. While the experts cannot and should not be
    expected to fully train a newcomer, they can at least recommend the
    first book, or first webpage, or other resource to get started. A
    newcomer doesn't know what to do with a website that is enormously
    complicated and packed with thousands of bits of highly technical
    information... they need an easier start... such as being recommended
    Ciarcia's "Build Your Own Z80 Computer" or "The Microcomputer Builder's
    Bible" by Chris Johnston, or "The CP/M Programmers Handbook" by Andy
    Johnson-Laird.

    I encourage the experts to have a simple newcomer page, perhaps
    entitled something like "So you want to have a running S-100
    machine?"... that recommends a list of books to read in a suggested,
    structured order. If the expert cannot deal with newcomers, then
    they should not expose themselves publically.. but only to other
    experts.... in essence, being the chess grand master, playing with
    other masters... who in turn teach others, and so on down the
    hierarchy.

    ~ J


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