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JHV 2000

Party animal Mad Butscher attends the latest annual meeting of the legendary ABBUC

The journey
At 06:30 precisely I was picked up by R.I.K. (Rex Imperator et Kellenbach, Markus Roemer) and we left my home town of Wiesbaden. We listened to traditional German music (normal, In Extremo) as we drove, and we arrived at Herten without problems. There we set ourselves up in the same corner as last year. After three round-trips of the city we found the citizen center, and then only by coincidence (we have visited the meeting so many times, but still can't find the way even though the directions are very easy).

After a short look around I had a talk with Andreas Vollpini, the only member of the H.A.R. (Hannover ABBUG Regionalgroup) who was present at the annual meeting this year. Andreas brought along the tie which I ordered at the last annual meeting(thanks, again, to his wife who made the tie).

Image of ABBUC Logo

Sijmen, a member from Holland, offered me some Atari Force comic books. They were in Dutch, but I got one for my collection. The main thing is it has Atari on the cover. He also offered Atari cookies for free. This was a main attraction of the meeting. The cookies were in the shape of Pac Man and Ms Pac Man, a mad idea. I hope to get them in every supermarket soon.

Besides the cookies he was also selling some hardware, the most interesting one was a clone of a VCS with 127 games built in. The console was as big as a Psion organiser, and a joypad was built in. The games had strange names, to avoid legal problems. But the only thing you have to do is connect it to a television, and you can play without changing the modules all the time, really great. Just when I became disappointed that I couldn't afford this nice piece of hardware, Mr XY / Light (Rouven Gehm) appeared. He slept in the car overnight, he told me, so he looked very tired.

ABBUC currently has approximately 430 members, the cash in hand amounts to several 10,000 DM and the supply of 5.25" diskettes is still enough for at least three years. The Atari magazine of Raetz publishing house is merged with Atari World magazine by Sacha Roeber, and is to be called the New Atari Generation magazine. Stefan Dorndorf was unfortunately not at the JHV 2000, therefore we didn't get to see the 512 KB flash ROM cartridge, but as Torsten Schall of SWAT said, the hardware is finished in the meantime. Likewise in progress is the CD-ROM driver for the Blackbox and the different 1 MB extensions.

Another member brought his weather station with him, which is operated by an Atari. Also some new software was mentioned. A new version of the Boss x graphic user interface, as well as a new version of the cc65 C-compiler and a Forth interpreter. There is a large number of people who refuse to use the ABBUC community forum, because it is hosted with MSN. Therefore we are looking for alternatives. More information about this and current hardware and software projects will be in the next ABBUC magazine.

Image of ABBUC Now!

General section
Once again there were many rare items and good deals. There was XL/XE, VCS, ST, Lynx, Jaguar and everything to do with Atari to buy and exchange. After the best pieces were distributed, it slowly became somewhat calmer again, and organized competitions of the RAF (all ABBUC group Frankfurt) began. 180, a darts program, was played. Unfortunately I lost in the first round against R.I.K, but for me, it was good fun. The winner was Mr XY.

Then the Best of Show competition started. First the releases of the Unconventional were shown and then the application programs. This time no hardware was entered in the competition. However, I think the 8-bit network games Multidash or Multicervi could be considered 50% of hardware, and these could have been entered in the hardware category.

Demonstrating these two network games had the same problems as a PC network, you have a lot of messing around until it works properly. But nevertheless it was very impressive to see 8 XL/XE interconnected. Next the evaluations of the contributions were made. Winner of the Best of Show competition was Heiko Bornhorst with a multi-file viewer and Jiri Bernasek with the Mulitdash network game.

Like every year, this JHV was a wonderful meeting, and we already look forward to the JHV 2001. It's clear to see at every JHV that the Atari XL/XE still draws many active people into its spell, and that the development continues and brings more new things all the time.

Picture of Club president Wolfgang Burger
Club president Wolfgang Burger winning his own prize!
(Photographs courtesy of Wolfgang/ABBUC)

Screenshot of Multidash
Competition winner, Multidash. Simplistic graphics but
challenging network play.


Glossary of terms

    Atari Bit-Byter User Club, one of Germany's oldest Atari clubs
  • Rex Imperator et Kellenbach
    This is the pseudonym of Markus Roemer, meaning, "King of Kellenbach" in Latin. Kellenbach is the village where Markus lives.


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MyAtari magazine - Feature #8, December 2000

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