Announcement for RetCon 2024 in West London, Sat 15th June

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martyn_hill
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Announcement for RetCon 2024 in West London, Sat 15th June

Post by martyn_hill »

Good afternoon everyone!

Just taking the opportunity to publicise this year's retro computer event RetCon 2024 in Greenford, West London this coming Saturday, 15th June 10am-5pm.

Whilst not traditionally QL focussed (I plan to change that!), I myself will be demonstrating effective networking between QLs/Q68/Qzero and the Spectrum.

You can find details here:
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/retcon-the ... 3284635237

and here:
https://www.facebook.com/gaming/RetConFestival

If you're in the area, would be great to see you!


martyn_hill
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Re: Announcement for RetCon 2024 in West London, Sat 15th June

Post by martyn_hill »

Just to add that the RetCon event went very well this year.

First time for the QL to be on show and I got lots of interested people asking questions, including a lovely Ukrainian couple who were intrigued by the QL and shared their story of growing up with the Spectrum clones coming out of Russia at the time.

I demonstrated a very simple networked games launcher that allowed attendees to bootstrap the Spectrum with a games selector loaded with a simple 'LOAD *"n";0 broadcast and then to load their selected game over the network from a Q68 file-server.

Unfortunately, my intent to demonstrate a networked QL doing the same had to be postponed for next time as I didn't finish the demo software for the Q68/Spectrum until the early hours of the morning of the event!

If my intent to raise awareness of the capabilities and potential for using the Sinclair Network caught-on, then it will have been a worthwhile - if exhausting - effort!

My next project (after a further release of both the ND-Q68 net driver for Q68/QZero and update to the QLUB firmware and corresponding driver) is to finish a half-designed project for a 'universal' Sinclair Network adapter that could be readily ported to other 8 and 16-bit retro machines - the idea of a a standardised, simple, cheap and effective network usable across diverse platforms appeals to me.

Do let me know if anyone here feels the same as it would encourage me to find the time to develop the solution and then release an open source design for others to take further...


Derek_Stewart
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Re: Announcement for RetCon 2024 in West London, Sat 15th June

Post by Derek_Stewart »

HI Martyn,

I am interested in your Networking plans.

I have still to build the remaining QLUB into a case and have added a bi colour activity LED on the front panel pf the QLUB case.

I really want to us the QL Network between QPC2-Q68-sQLux and maybe ZX Spectrum assuming I can get an Interface 1 at a reasonable price. Thought I have a Interface 1 that does not work, so maybe a little repairs is in order and recpap, fit Composite Mod to the Spectrum


Regards,

Derek
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Pr0f
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Re: Announcement for RetCon 2024 in West London, Sat 15th June

Post by Pr0f »

I think this is an excellent idea Martyn!

The idea of an open network that would be usable with other Micros - love it.

I think it would be good to have support for 'lesser devices' - enabling support for hardware interfaces - such as LCD display module, digital I/O and analog I/O - perhaps achievable easily by porting the sinclair network to an arduino?


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dilwyn
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Re: Announcement for RetCon 2024 in West London, Sat 15th June

Post by dilwyn »

Pr0f wrote: Mon Jun 17, 2024 8:16 am I think this is an excellent idea Martyn!

The idea of an open network that would be usable with other Micros - love it.

I think it would be good to have support for 'lesser devices' - enabling support for hardware interfaces - such as LCD display module, digital I/O and analog I/O - perhaps achievable easily by porting the sinclair network to an arduino?
Our very own "USB" style system?


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Peter
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Re: Announcement for RetCon 2024 in West London, Sat 15th June

Post by Peter »

dilwyn wrote: Mon Jun 17, 2024 8:36 am Our very own "USB" style system?
Unfortunately, the potential latencies are too high for input devices like mouse.
The QLNET physical layer would allow more suitable protocols, especially with specific hardware support.
But that would make things incompatible to the old machines.


afx
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Re: Announcement for RetCon 2024 in West London, Sat 15th June

Post by afx »

martyn_hill wrote: Sun Jun 16, 2024 8:09 pm My next project (after a further release of both the ND-Q68 net driver for Q68/QZero and update to the QLUB firmware and corresponding driver) is to finish a half-designed project for a 'universal' Sinclair Network adapter that could be readily ported to other 8 and 16-bit retro machines - the idea of a a standardised, simple, cheap and effective network usable across diverse platforms appeals to me.
Hi Martyn, a simple retro cross-platform network, that sounds great!. Please keep us informed about all your projects, they are very interesting.

Greetings!


martyn_hill
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Re: Announcement for RetCon 2024 in West London, Sat 15th June

Post by martyn_hill »

Thanks for the feedback, gentlemen! That is encouraging!

I'll fire up a new thread in due course on the topic of the 'X-Net' (for Cross-platform Network) idea.

@pr0f - I think I follow your comment - alongside the cross-platform idea, I've been thinking about how the Sinclair Network could form the basis of an arbitrary 'Device Interconnect', something with more capability than just i2c, but less cumbersome than SERial or Ethernet. A sort of IoT for low-spec retro computers and peripheral devices...

More to follow in the new thread...


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