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MAG BASH NOV 1st 2008
Posted by Mikey_C on 2008/11/2 8:38:55 (2404 reads)

A quick review of the 1st Mag Bash show, held in Coventry, UK.

Arrived at the Venue in time to see the dentist (2:30 - geddit?). It was a chilly wet miserable day, but inside it was dry and warm with a very positive atmosphere.

Having paid the entrance money of ?3 ukp, and got a sticker to tell everyone who I am. (not much point really since everyone knows me) - I entered the hall, to be greeted by groans, followed by "Oh god, what you doing here?" - And that was just Rigo!

Resized Image But I digress, the main hall itself, was a bit titchy, in comparison to the size of the Big Bash venue, which in turn was titchy compared to the WOA-SE venue, which in turn was titchy compared to the Novotel in Hammersmith.
- but such is the size of the Amiga community nowadays, if we don't start getting people back, we'll soon be holding a show in a phone booth! Not that in anyway thats is MAG's fault.

However, those that had made it, were doing their bit to try and revive our favourite computer platform, in attendance was the UK's premiere Amiga retailer, Amigakit. (of course they are also the only UK Amiga retailer, but shush!) As you can see, they were a bit stumped by a customer asking them if they had any add ons for a commodore vic-20! Bet they did a bit of trade though!

Resized ImageNext to Amigakit, and heading towards the centre stage, was the Hyperion table, which consisted mainly of Rigo and his SAM440EP, Plus Hyperion's Everett Carlton, who was doing his best to blend into the background in a desperate bid not to be deluged with court case questions!
Seriously though, it was nice of Hyperion's top brass to come over to the UK and say hi, its been a long time since the UK has had any official representation from the leading player on the Amiga scene.

I have never met Everett in person before, but I found him to be a very friendly and easily accessible person. He was happy to talk to anyone and everyone, he mingled with the crowd and generally was very amiable.

At this point I should add that I did take a photo of him and Swoop, but alas, when I got it home it came out blurry! (I am crap at photography) Sorry guys!

Resized ImageGenerally though, there were a good 30 people in the main hall at any one time, I believe the final total of people through the door was about 50 at the end of the day, but it is always nice to attend this type of venue and say hi to a lot of old faces that one hasn't seen in a long time and yet, even to this day there were some people in there who I had never met before, so it was nice to see a couple of fresh faces.

Luke Stowe (blurred person in photo) and his crew did a superb job given that it was their first time at hosting an Amiga show. As with all Amiga shows there was a raffle with the winner getting a nice new SAM board with OS4. It went to a new Amiga user with who turned up at 4pm and who I only know as "Mouse" on IRC. Congrats to him!

It was also nice to see fellow ANT member, Chris Handley finally getting his hands on Amiga hardware after using emulation for so many years.

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Finally, before I left, I was able to watch Rigo, do a very polished presentation of the new SAM board running OS4.1 on the main stage, it really was very polished, the place was very quiet as everyone listened intently.

All in all, a nicely done show, I just wish more people had turned up, over the years the Amiga community has shrunk in the UK, but it isn't that small. Well done to all involved on putting Amiga UK shows back on the map.

  0   Article ID : 28
SAM @ ANT - OCTOBER 12th 2008
Posted by Mikey_C on 2008/10/13 23:51:25 (4626 reads)

SAM @ ANT - 12th October 2008
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I arrived at the Amiga North Thames venue at around five past one, to find four strangers waiting to go in already, now as any ANT member knows, I am never there first, second, third...... oh heck, its lucky if I manage to get there before 2pm!

So, apologising for my fellow ANT members being late (oh the irony) I set about unloading my car, getting the key, to open the Vestry, and letting the poor waiting souls into the venue.

Within 30 minutes most of the ANT crew had arrived and I must say, never in my entire life of hosting Amiga related events have I seen so much chaos! There were cables, boxes, Amigas, Monitors, tables network cables, people making tea, coffee, eating cake, chatting all at the same time!

Eventually the place was organised into some semblance of order and Rigo arrived with his SAM.
Initially we had decided to use a large projector, but we couldn't get both devices to talk to each other, so in the end we decided to use a large monitor (well as large as we had anyhow)

By 2:00pm, we had a good crowd of people turn up, of which (apart from ANT regulars) I only knew one, metaljoe, (John Chandler esq) The rest of the people I can't ever recal meeting previously. (Thats the thing about turning 40, the first thing that goes is the...................)

2:30 pm came and within a few minutes afterwards, the presentation got started, it was pretty much elbow room only by that time as you can see by the picture.
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Everyone listened intently as Rigo, presented the SAM, showing it running OS4.1. -- Admittedly, he didn't show its full capabilities, because it was pretty much (and you could see it was) a virgin install and to be honest, he was only just gonna bring it along, plonk it on the desk and let people look for themselves, however I don't think we were at all prepared for the 30 or so people in total who were still arriving by 4:00pm.
- having said all that, and despite him not being prepared for a full product demonstration, he managed to wring out nearly 30 minutes, taking questions here and there. Mainly though the room was so quiet you could have heard a church mouse squeak, as a matter of fact, I think I did!

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Later, Rigo kindly helped me to re-house my MicroA1 into a new case, as the old case I initially got, had a failing power supply - in which was a custom PSU (company long gone bust). So, if you are reading this Rigo, thank you very much for returning me back to the land of Amiga usage once more
Having my ?A1 up and running allowed me to show the people who had turned up, OS4.1 running Games, Movies, Wookiechat, SabreMSN etc, whilst it didn't all run smoothly, (I think the ?A1 was still settling in to its new home) I think they all got a fair appraisal of whats OS4.1 is all about.

I would like to thank the people who turned up, many of whom were ex-amiga users curious to see what the fuss was about, whether they came, saw and decided to buy one, I don't know, But at least it does go to show that there is still some interest in the platform from former Amiga users.

Do you know, just between you and me, if Hyperion get a just settlement in the forthcoming court case, this Amiga thing might just catch on.

Here's hoping to a large turn out at the MAG bash event in Coventry on November 1st and to many SAMS being sold on the day.


Pictures of Rigo's SAM440EP
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  0   Article ID : 27

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