• This Letter Quality Printer Is Now Fully Armed and Operational

    08 Jun | 16
    • in Retro • 
    • by Chris Osborn

    This article is a followup to my previous article about trying to open and repair this typewriter. It's open! Bob Will didn’t have a service manual for my Smith Corona Memory Correct 400 Messenger but he did let me in on the secret to getting a mid ‘80s Smith Corona typewriter open: pry really hard. Yes really! Before you do that you want to remove the two screws near the platen. After taking out the screws the only thing holding the cover on is a couple of large metal posts...

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  • It’s User Serviceable if You Have Gift Wrap and Weather Strip

    04 Jun | 16
    • in Electronics • 
    • in TRS-80 • 
    • by Chris Osborn

    My TRS-80 Model II Last weekend one of my usual sources of inspiration, @duhproject, received a Commodore 128. A lot of people on Twitter started talking their  128s, so I had to get mine out too. I thought it would be interesting to try out a true 80 column terminal program under CP/M since it was something that the 128 could do that that 64 doesn’t. It didn’t take long before I decided that running CP/M from a 5.25” drive wasn’t “CP/M enough” and I...

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  • The Age of Aquarius?

    02 Jun | 16
    • in Raspberry Pi • 
    • in Mattel Aquarius • 
    • by Chris Osborn

    @MWTremblay on Twitter was asking me if I hung out regularly on IRC, and although I’ve written my own IRC client, that was a long time ago and don’t really use IRC much anymore. I mentioned that I use Twitter as my new IRC, and he said he was looking for something more compatible with an Atari XE. Challenge accepted! About a week later I found the time to work on that project and spent the day cobbling up a BBS door in Objective-C that would allow a user to send a tweet. Another...

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  • Forked tcpser to fix the telnet bug and add features

    26 May | 16
    • in Retro • 
    • by Chris Osborn

    While tinkering with my BBS this week I again found myself frustrated with a couple of bugs in tcpser. The first one was that it only worked with 8N1 data. A few of the comm programs on my more obscure computers have no settings to choose parity, and will insist on either doing mark parity or even parity. That meant that I couldn’t even enter the AT command to dial out.   An easy fix would have been to just strip the high bit so that tcpser would see the AT commands, but that would...

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  • Wanted: Smith-Corona Service Manual - Reward Offered

    18 May | 16
    • in Retro • 
    • by Chris Osborn

    Update 2016 Jun 8: I was able to get the typewriter open and it is now working and printing A couple of weeks ago I picked up a Smith-Corona Memory Correct 400 Messenger at Goodwill. I debated getting it since I already have enough retro stuff around the house, but every single time I’m at a Goodwill I look at all the typewriters to see if they have some kind of serial or parallel port. This one has an external interface which can be connected to a computer using an external box...

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