Posts filed under: Blog

‘Little’ computers

IBM released its personal computer in 1981.  Whilst this would be the system that would lead to ‘PC’ becoming a synonym for a computer sitting on a desktop, it was quite expensive.  Prices started at $1,565 (presumably USD) for a configuration without disk drives (Wikipedia).  Apples -- destined for the ... Continue Reading »

“Abandonware”: A separate category to orphan works?

Many copyright works – especially books – have a potentially lengthy commercial lifespan.  Of course, longevity does not necessarily equate to commercial success, but the longer a work’s ‘shelf life’, the better the prospects for the owner.  Strangely enough, a longer shelf life may also benefit the consumer – how ... Continue Reading »

4Mation: A British/Australian Box of Treasures

For many British children growing up in the 1980s, the theme tune and sight of the witch in the educational game Granny’s Garden will often evoke a nostalgic response. Released in 1983, Granny’s Garden was developed by Mike Matson, a deputy head teacher at a school in Devon and an ... Continue Reading »

Adventure Fans, Clubs and Help Columns

Help columns were a regular feature of computer magazine in the 1980s. As Adventure games were perhaps the most challenging games to play frequently leaving players stuck and unable to progress the Adventure help guru was a must for most game publications. The popularity of “The Hobbit” and ... Continue Reading »

Australian Pioneers

For the next few weeks the The Popular Memory Archive will focus on Australia’s Videogame Pioneers, looking at the stories of some of Australia’s earliest game designers. How they got started, how they went about inventing an industry and making the games they created. Please contribute your memories.

Australian Pioneers: Shocking Tape Loading Stories…

Remember the maddening process of waiting thirty-minutes for a tape to load? Behold the most amazing Australian Pavloada! Not a delicious meringue dessert but a tape fast loader dramatically reducing waiting times for your fave games. The Pavloada was created by for Beam Software by ... Continue Reading »

Australian Pioneers: SSG’s American Strategy

Sydney based games designers and publishers Strategic Studies Group (SSG) founded their Australian studio in 1982. Whilst the games of Melbourne House and Beam Software’s could be understood to belong to the evolution of games from arcade to home computing -- with the “Horace” ... Continue Reading »

Build your own computer

In the long 1980s decade, some hardly souls in both New Zealand and Australia built their own computers. New Zealand Microcomputer Club legend, Selwyn Arrow, recalls building his first computer (or part thereof): It was either Christmas 77 or 78, more likely 1978…A copy of Byte magazine arrived…I read it ... Continue Reading »

Cataloguing video/computer games – pitfalls for new players

The issues for collection managers around games cataloguing are difficult and that may well be why we find 30 years on, the institutional collection and cataloguing of this material is somewhat limited. Similar to the new challenges of ‘Time-Based Media’ cataloguing we find ourselves with the complexities of hardware, software, ... Continue Reading »

Challenge Chamber

We Want Your High Scores What was your high score? How did you share it with the world? Showcasing  gaming achievement was important for many game fans. Home computer fans had no public leader boards like those enjoyed in the arcades but  magazines once more came to the rescue of Australian micro ... Continue Reading »

Collector – Andrew Stephen

What got you started collecting on/around the area of games? I was lead into collecting by nothing more than misty-eyed nostalgia. My first computer was a Sinclair ZX81. In the early 80s, at 10 or 11 years old, I taught myself to program a ZX81 which was on display in a ... Continue Reading »

Collector – Michael Davidson

What got you started collecting on/around the area of games?  I’ve always had an interest from a young age in computers and videogames and I’m old enough to have grown up during a period when both were new and exciting. There was a period where there was a flood of different ... Continue Reading »

Collector – Rob MacBride

What got you started collecting on/around the area of games? A number of things really, I've lived my life in gaming; From the earliest time all I could think about was playing video games. First console was a 2600, and as I ... Continue Reading »

Conference report

On the 19th and 20th June, 2014, the Play It Again team welcomed a fabulously diverse group of  scholars and practitioners to Melbourne's Australian Centre for the Moving Image for the Born Digital and Cultural Heritage conference.  In attendance were Humanities and Computer Science researchers, lawyers, archivists, conservators, librarians, game ... Continue Reading »

Curators speak about their collections

The curation of videogames, their collection and preservation creates new challenges for the Museum. In 2002, Stanford curator of History of Science and Technology and Film and Media collections Henry Lowood called for new institutional and curatorial models capable of addressing videogames. Yet in a 2011 survey on the state ... Continue Reading »

Fans, Fan Communities and Game Culture

Over the next few weeks, our theme focus is on game fans and fan communities. Fans have had a significant role to play in taking the initiative to document and preserve videogames – the software, the hardware they were played on, and the memories and experiences of first playing them. ... Continue Reading »
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