All-day 'Virtual' Acorn session #1, Saturday 11th April 2020, 9am - 5pm

threads for previous 'virtual' ABug events
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sydney
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All-day 'Virtual' Acorn session #1, Saturday 11th April 2020, 9am - 5pm

Post by sydney » Sat Apr 04, 2020 9:59 am

Hello everyone.

I am pleased to announce our first* 'Virtual ABug' on Saturday the 11th of April, from 9am until 5pm - or later!.

*=second if you include the Scottish event!

The event will take place here in this thread and via video conferencing using Zoom. A Zoom client is available for all major OS's including Windows, macOS, Linux, Android and iOS.

Please reply in this thread if you'd like to participate, what times you are likely to be around and what, if anything, you'll be doing and I'll compile a list so we know who will be there. Participating can mean anything from working on a project to lurking silently watching events as they unfold. At the events I've attended in the past I have had grand plans but usually end up spending the whole day chatting!-

This is the first time we have attempted something like this so I'm not sure exactly how things will workout.
markjw has a licensed Zoom account which allows unlimited minutes and up to 300 participants that is provided to him by a client who has no problem with it being used for the members here to host a virtual meetup. I'm not sure markjw will be willing or able to host for the full 8 hours so we may split event up into smaller sessions hosted by other members using their free accounts.

This post is very much a work in progress and will develop over the coming days.
I'm hopeful that if this is successful online meetups could become a regular occurance in the ABug calendar.


Attending
  1. sydney (Simon). 9am - 5pm Learning ARM assembly language. RiscPC repair
  2. markjw (Mark). 9am - 5pm
  3. JudgeBeeb (Robert). 9am - 5pm Atom refurbishing and chat.
  4. daveejhitchins (Dave). 9am - 5pm show-off my 2 Jukeboxes, workshop, progress with the MGC MKII
  5. tricky (Richard). 9am - 5pm work on MoonPatrol and show my more recent joystick/spinner projects for beeb/Vectrex.
  6. Arcadian (Dave). 9am - 5pm I could share some of the things I've been working on.
  7. EdwardianDuck (Jeremy). 9am - 5pm my implementation of the obscure board game Skirrid and 6502
  8. LordVaderUK (). In and out see what the real experts are doing, and "meet" some of the names who have been so helpful on the forum.
  9. 1024MAK (Mark). In and out I’ll be lurking and chatting mainly.
  10. SimonSideburns (Simon). In and out demonstrate cleaning of a floppy disc with IPA, Spectrum in a briefcase
  11. BigEd (Ed). In and out I’ll be mostly lurking.
  12. RFairman (). 9am - 5pm Observing
  13. TimoHartong (Timo?). 9am - 5pm bluetooth stack for RISCOS and a WIMP program to convert BBC B screen dumps to sprites
  14. z0m8ied0g (). 9am - 5pm might try and join at some point, depends on various factors
  15. hoglet (David). 10am - 5pm happy to answer questions on any of my past Atom or Beeb projects
  16. dp11 (Dominic?). 9am - 5pm
  17. anightin (). 9am - 5pm I'd like to pop in and out to listen please
  18. Shift Lock (Rich). 9am - 5pm I'm the new member Simon's talking about
  19. vztfzc (). 9am - 5pm
  20. oss003 (Kees). 9am - 5pm
  21. jbnbeeb (Jason). 12 - 5pm
  22. sPhilMainwaring (Phil). 9am - 5pm

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by JudgeBeeb » Sat Apr 04, 2020 10:04 am

Please put me down for the whole day. I am not actually directly working on anything at the moment, but would be keen to be involved in any Atom related chat and I may try to work on the ongoing refurbishing of my two Atoms.
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by JudgeBeeb » Sat Apr 04, 2020 10:11 am

Just thinking about this a bit. If we have a single ABUG meetings in Zoom with, say, 30 participants, it is going to get a bit crazy.

markjw, is it possible to have, say, 4 or 5 meetings scheduled simultaneously, which people can dip in and out of? If so, we could break it down to say, the following list:
  • Atom
  • Beeb hardare
  • Beeb software
  • Electron
  • Archimedes
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by sydney » Sat Apr 04, 2020 10:17 am

JudgeBeeb wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 10:11 am
Just thinking about this a bit. If we have a single ABUG meetings in Zoom with, say, 30 participants, it is going to get a bit crazy.

markjw, is it possible to have, say, 4 or 5 meetings scheduled simultaneously, which people can dip in and out of? If so, we could break it down to say, the following list:
  • Atom
  • Beeb hardare
  • Beeb software
  • Electron
  • Archimedes
I'd had similar thoughts and knew we'd end up discussing this pretty quickly. I think what may happen is other meetings will be started to drill down into each category. Whether markjw can do this or others have use their free accounts to host smaller meetings shouldn't be such a problem as long as we co-ordinate on the day and keep this thread updated so everyone knows what is going on. More opinions on this are very much welcomed!

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by daveejhitchins » Sat Apr 04, 2020 10:30 am

I'll be there :D

I can show-off my 2 Jukeboxes, workshop, progress with the MGC MKII and generally have a great day =D>

Dave H :D
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by tricky » Sat Apr 04, 2020 10:49 am

I'll be around and trying to do some work on MoonPatrol and maybe show some of my more recent joystick/spinner projects for beeb/Vectrex.

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by SteveBagley » Sat Apr 04, 2020 10:57 am

sydney wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 10:17 am

I'd had similar thoughts and knew we'd end up discussing this pretty quickly. I think what may happen is other meetings will be started to drill down into each category. Whether markjw can do this or others have use their free accounts to host smaller meetings shouldn't be such a problem as long as we co-ordinate on the day and keep this thread updated so everyone knows what is going on. More opinions on this are very much welcomed!
Zoom has the option to create breakout rooms (it’s hidden in the account options settings), that you can move people into, and the host can switch people between different rooms quite easily.

Steve

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by Arcadian » Sat Apr 04, 2020 11:04 am

tricky wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 10:49 am
I'll be around and trying to do some work on MoonPatrol and maybe show some of my more recent joystick/spinner projects for beeb/Vectrex.
Nice will look forward to that!!

Could I request a 'room' be set up for BBC/Electron/Atom new games and demo coding/releases? I've been quite busy the last month getting a host of physical releases prepared for release, I've never used Zoom (and don't even have a webcam) but if I can use the camera on my phone(?) I could share some of the things I've been working on too?!
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by sydney » Sat Apr 04, 2020 11:24 am

I have to own up to a bit of a mistake on my part. I've announced this ABug without first confirming with mark that he'd be around next Saturday. Hopefully he is but if not I'm sure we can muddle through with the free version. If this is a successful meet it would probably be useful to crowdfund a registration between those people attending.
£13 a month between 20-30 people is not particularly expensive!

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by sydney » Sat Apr 04, 2020 11:32 am

Arcadian wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 11:04 am
...I've never used Zoom (and don't even have a webcam) but if I can use the camera on my phone(?) I could share some of the things I've been working on too?!
You can definitely use the camera on your phone. Which OS is it?

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by JudgeBeeb » Sat Apr 04, 2020 11:34 am

sydney wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 11:24 am
I have to own up to a bit of a mistake on my part. I've announced this ABug without first confirming with mark that he'd be around next Saturday. Hopefully he is but if not I'm sure we can muddle through with the free version. If this is a successful meet it would probably be useful to crowdfund a registration between those people attending.
£13 a month between 20-30 people is not particularly expensive!
The free version is not going to work because you cannot have a group meeting for more than 40 minutes.

However, I have a lot of funds left over in the kitty from the last ABUG. So if markjw cannot accommodate us, I will sign up for a ABUG/StarDot account. syndey - please can you PM me when you have heard back from Mark. Indeed, if Mark would prefer it if we had our own account, we can do it that way in any event.
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by EdwardianDuck » Sat Apr 04, 2020 11:41 am

I'd like to attend, I'll be around for the whole day, but might have to dip in and out.

I can demonstrate / talk about / answer questions about my implementation of the obscure board game Skirrid for the B/Master/Electron if that would be of interest.

My main relevant interest is 6502 programming.

My current project is actually working on the Atari 8 bit version of Skirrid, so no actual BBC projects active at the moment. You never know I might get some inspiration from the meet up.

Jeremy
Master 128 + RetroClinic DataCentre + Internal Pi Zero Coprocessor, MiST
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by sydney » Sat Apr 04, 2020 12:00 pm

JudgeBeeb wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 11:34 am
The free version is not going to work because you cannot have a group meeting for more than 40 minutes.

However, I have a lot of funds left over in the kitty from the last ABUG. So if markjw cannot accommodate us, I will sign up for a ABUG/StarDot account. syndey - please can you PM me when you have heard back from Mark. Indeed, if Mark would prefer it if we had our own account, we can do it that way in any event.
You can however have as many meetings as you want with the free version so as one finishes we could simply start another meeting, or another free user could start a meeting.

That seems like a good use of the ABug funds! Better than extra cheesy wotsits at any rate. I'll let you know as soon as I know.
And before anyone gets too excited - by extra I mean a larger quantity, not more cheesy than normal. :lol:

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by LordVaderUK » Sat Apr 04, 2020 12:12 pm

I will be there, not sure I can attend for the whole day but I will drop in and out if that's OK? I am really not an expert in anything much but would love to see what the real experts are doing, and "meet" some of the names who have been so helpful on the forum.
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by 1024MAK » Sat Apr 04, 2020 12:20 pm

I’ll be lurking and chatting mainly. I won’t be online all day, so will drop in when I can.

Mark

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by SimonSideburns » Sat Apr 04, 2020 12:35 pm

I am able to pop in and out, and if I get my Beeb area tidy by then I could demonstrate cleaning of a floppy disc with IPA prior to export to the datacentre, as was discussed on the forum recently with a new member.

I could also bring out my Spectrum in a briefcase that I mentioned at the last ABUG in January. It seemed to generate some interest. I know it's not Acorn, but it's still a curiosity.
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by JudgeBeeb » Sat Apr 04, 2020 1:39 pm

The more I think about it, having our own Zoom account sounds like a very good idea. It would mean (if I am reading the help pages correctly) that we can assign a number of StarDot members to be admins on the account - who can then set up and control meetings.
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by BigEd » Sat Apr 04, 2020 1:55 pm

I'll join in! I expect mostly to be lurking. I'm interested in hardware and software, low level stuff, mostly for Beeb and Master, and especially Pi-based projects.

I do wonder if the 40 minute limit might be a feature: if anyone starts a breakout session, when they get cut off they can rejoin the main track.

In any given Zoom session, one person is acting as host, and is able to (for example) mute everyone or give one person focus. It's like chairing a meeting. And the host can hand over host-ship to someone else (and then can grab it back!)

As always, it's best to be on mute if you're not speaking, so long as you have the presence of mind to unmute when you get the feeling you might speak up. And using headphones helps a lot with the acoustics: a headset with microphone is even better.

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by roland » Sat Apr 04, 2020 2:54 pm

Yesterday, an article about Zoom was published on Tidbits Every Zoom Security and Privacy Flaw So Far, and What You Can Do to Protect Yourself

Interesting stuff to read .... and make your conclusion ....
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by markjw » Sat Apr 04, 2020 3:15 pm

I've checked on Zoom and it says you can only run one meeting at a time so I suggest I run the main 9-5 one and we use peoples free accounts to run the others
Mark

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by Rfairman » Sat Apr 04, 2020 3:27 pm

I think we beat you to it ABug Scotland had its first virtual meeting at 2.00 pm BST. We had a meeting via facebook messenger video with 9 participants for one hour. No dropouts Slight problem with feedback but cured with headphones and mic mute when not talking Next meeting early May

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by JudgeBeeb » Sat Apr 04, 2020 3:45 pm

markjw wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 3:15 pm
I've checked on Zoom and it says you can only run one meeting at a time so I suggest I run the main 9-5 one and we use peoples free accounts to run the others
Mark
Mark, I have sent you a PM.
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by sydney » Sat Apr 04, 2020 4:27 pm

Rfairman wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 3:27 pm
I think we beat you to it ABug Scotland had its first virtual meeting at 2.00 pm BST. We had a meeting via facebook messenger video with 9 participants for one hour. No dropouts Slight problem with feedback but cured with headphones and mic mute when not talking Next meeting early May
My apologies! Top post edited. :lol:

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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by klintworth » Sat Apr 04, 2020 4:29 pm

EdwardianDuck wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 11:41 am
I'd like to attend, I'll be around for the whole day, but might have to dip in and out.

I can demonstrate / talk about / answer questions about my implementation of the obscure board game Skirrid for the B/Master/Electron if that would be of interest.........
Jeremy
I used to love that game! Is it available online for the Acorns? Thanks, Paul
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Re: Second 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by Rfairman » Sat Apr 04, 2020 4:38 pm

No need to apologise I look forward to seeing your experience with Zoom. You meeting looks more ambitious than ours with a longer duration and more participants It seems that zoom allows the host to control who speaks. I think a large group would be hard to control with facebook A bit like herding virtual sheep. Does zoom put names to the faces as facebook only shows the video feeds without names Good uck with your meeting
Richard

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Re: Second 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by EdwardianDuck » Sat Apr 04, 2020 4:38 pm

Hello Paul,

Yes, there is a playable prototype in this thread viewtopic.php?f=53&t=18459.

Edit. It a sideways ROM image, but not actually playable online as such.

It's still a work in progress, but the game is playable.

Enjoy!
Jeremy
Last edited by EdwardianDuck on Sat Apr 04, 2020 5:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: First 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by BigEd » Sat Apr 04, 2020 5:02 pm

Rfairman wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 3:27 pm
I think we beat you to it ABug Scotland had its first virtual meeting at 2.00 pm BST. We had a meeting via facebook messenger video with 9 participants for one hour. No dropouts Slight problem with feedback but cured with headphones and mic mute when not talking Next meeting early May
Well done! I was just on the first virtual HPCC monthly meeting - also my first - and that worked well, with up to 5 video participants and one or two on audio.

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Re: Second 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by Rfairman » Sun Apr 05, 2020 11:37 am

I would like to observe (lurk) during the day

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Re: Second 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by BigEd » Sun Apr 05, 2020 11:56 am

We found dialling in on a phone line was particularly helpful for people with only a built in microphone on their laptop. They could also join on video but with audio muted.

Stray noise is a real killer on these calls.

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Re: Second 'Virtual ABug', Saturday 11th April, 9am - 5pm

Post by Rfairman » Mon Apr 06, 2020 12:48 pm

I agree feedback is a pain in the A
The host of the meeting can mute or turn off video for each participant If the host turns off a participant,s video a window for each participant stays on screen with their name. This is problem if you want a single participant to have the full video screen. Each participant must turn off their own video feeds as needed.

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