The Magic Telephone (aka "The Magic Telephone Box")

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lurkio
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Re: The Magic Telephone (aka "The Magic Telephone Box")

Post by lurkio » Sun Nov 15, 2020 1:34 am

Diminished wrote:
Sat Nov 14, 2020 2:19 pm
Great effort.
Most of the credit has to go to Chris, who sent me the disc, as I mentioned in my previous post. I've learnt that she's been trying to get The Magic Telephone archived for at least four years! In that time she's sent copies off to various people on several different occasions, but all her efforts came to naught, for one reason or another.

She was actually in contact with one LordTyranus of this very parish, with whom I exchanged a few PMs in 2016-17. It seems that he, like several others in this thread, was very keen to see Magic Telephone archived and made available again. He had fond memories of playing it BITD, and had been waiting thirty years to revisit it! He had been trying to act as a middleman between Chris and a third party, at one point summarising the rather confusing situation like this:
In 2016, LordTyranus wrote:I'm about to post a "rallying call" thread on the forum I was talking about (I will send the link once it is up there) but I need to confirm a few of the details. Apologies if I got some of the stuff wrong, I've just had to go through a large number of emails and try to keep track...

1) Chris sent X at YYYYY a BBC Micro disc containing The Magic Telephone Box. But this disc was damaged beyond repair.
2) Chris sent an Archimedes A3000 disc containing The Magic Telephone Box, also to X at YYYYY - this has not been tested yet.
3) Chris has (or has access to) the BBC code of The Magic Telephone Box.
4) Chris has part 2a and part 2b on her A5000 (not sure if this has been sent to YYYYY). The A5000 currently needs reinitialising.
5) Chris has an "in progress" HTML version of The Magic Telephone Box on her (currently needs repairing) A3000.
6) X needs assistance with the BBC Micro disc but it is most likely a lost cause because of the physical damage.
7) X needs help getting the raw data from the A3000 disc.
8 ) X has access to both a Kryoflux Forensic Floppy disk reader and a custom-built Linux disc reading/data recovery system.
A year later, there still hadn't been any progress, even though Chris had sent off yet another copy of the Magic Telephone disc to X at YYYYY. When she enquired about what had happened to the disc, X replied, "...the Tech. Support chap, that was going to do this [i.e. attempt to archive the disc], left for a better job and all the Volunteers who would be capable of doing this are busy with their own restoration projects."

Despite all the dead ends (and there's more to the story than I've mentioned in this post), Chris persevered, and I, like several other people I'm sure, am incredibly grateful to her for never giving up on the idea of rescuing The Magic Telephone. I wouldn't have blamed her if she had.

:idea:

EDIT: Here's some more info that Chris sent me about her copy of The Magic Telephone, which is now available to play at bbmicro.co.uk:
Chris de Cordova wrote:Just read that [i.e. this thread]...much of the early stuff then the new. Happy for you to say more if you wish and to name me! I may catch up with some old friends!!! Seeing the menu screen reminds me that after the first part issued there was a clamouring for more, as kids gobbled up granny's garden then this...they were the only games of their kind at the time [...] There was a part 2 given, as so many people had enjoyed the first one, and then a harder part 2 (2b) as the first (2a) was felt to be too easy [...] MAPE Brought out part 2 but teachers and kids moaned it was too easy and MAPE did an alternative second part [...] I created the menu you showed and the naming was my choice, not MAPE's
EDIT2: More info from Chris, from some Facebook comments:
Chris de Cordova wrote:I have found the folder where I worked on re-creating it in Textease as linked pages, all ready for converting to html.

Also some notes: eg 'The author is Trevor Lusty. Others involved in the later parts were Simon Harris, programmer, with Stuart Duke, Anne Farr, Margaret Brice, Mike Collis and Roger Keeling.'
Last edited by lurkio on Sun Nov 15, 2020 4:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

poink
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Re: The Magic Telephone (aka "The Magic Telephone Box")

Post by poink » Sun Nov 15, 2020 7:08 am

At last I shall be able to play part two! Thank you all.

I'm amazed that Chris was finding it so difficult to get it archived; makes you wonder how much else just falls between the cracks.

LordTyranus
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Re: The Magic Telephone (aka "The Magic Telephone Box")

Post by LordTyranus » Sun Nov 15, 2020 2:49 pm

This is fantastic work. Many thanks to all involved :)

I first contacted Chris way back in March 2015 about the physical copy in her possession. I'm glad the archiving efforts have paid off.
Well done to all involved.
:D

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lurkio
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Re: The Magic Telephone (aka "The Magic Telephone Box")

Post by lurkio » Sun Nov 15, 2020 4:15 pm

poink wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2020 7:08 am
I'm amazed that Chris was finding it so difficult to get it archived; makes you wonder how much else just falls between the cracks.
Yes, it just gets binned, especially the educational software. John/flaxcottage, who runs the educational archive tells me that there's loads of eduware that hasn't been saved and is probably lost forever -- proportionally more than the number of commerical games that are missing, perhaps. :(

LordTyranus wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2020 2:49 pm
I first contacted Chris way back in March 2015 about the physical copy in her possession. I'm glad the archiving efforts have paid off.
Thank you for your heroic attempts to get the disc archived -- but, wow, 2015 you say?! If only Chris had been put in touch with me, or someone else on the forum, back then -- it would have saved a lot of time! Still, all's well that ends well.

I'd been keeping my eyes peeled for Part 2 ever since I found out it existed. But in the end it was Lee who tipped me off about a Facebook conversation in which Chris mentioned that she had a copy. That was all it took -- I was like a dog with a bone and didn't rest till it was finally archived! I'm very grateful to Chris for putting up with my nagging her about it!

:idea:

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leenew
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Re: The Magic Telephone (aka "The Magic Telephone Box")

Post by leenew » Mon Nov 16, 2020 4:44 pm

Well done to all involved =D>

Lee

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