I decided a while ago that if I am going to write about retro computers I probably should use a retro computer to do it. I decided on my weapon of choice, my trusty old Apple IIc Memory Expansion model with 1MB Apple RAM card, ROMXc, BMOW Floppy EMU and an Apple 3.5 UniDisk. I also needed to choose a word processor. I started with Sandys as this was a local home grown Australian product back in the day. I wasn’t familiar with it and the learning curve was a little steep. I then decided to try ZARDAX, another Aussie developed product and one I was familiar with from university. Unfortunately I could not get ZARDAX to work on the IIc. It requires a setup program where you can choose various options including hardware setup. I couldn’t get the setup program to launch without crashing. I finally settled on AppleWorks, it has some downsides, mainly that I can’t run it on an Apple ][ or ][+. However the upsides are that it works and I am very familiar with it (at least my 30 years younger self was).
Given I am publishing this on WordPress there was a clear need to get the written text from the Apple IIc to my Mac Studio so I could publish it online. I managed to do this with a combination of Floppy EMU and Ciderpress 4.1 (Michael Mulhern’s WINE wrapped version for ARM Macs). However I had to jump through lots of hoops. Too many hoops in fact so I will be trying to make a more automated less hoopy workflow.
At the end of the day I really love typing on the IIc keyboard and the glow of those barely legible little green characters is filled with nostalgia and the simplicity of a bygone era.