The September meeting of the TI-Chips was opened with the reading of the August minutes and the Treasurer's report. Both reports were accepted as read.
Les Kee reported that although the club's library hasn't seen much action for quite a while, he was considering a way to conveniently catalog the Chips' collection for disbursement to those who request a listing of the library. This sparked a lively discussion as to what to do with our huge collection of software and articles for the TI-99/4A. The ultimate question was how to safeguard these historic files. It was suggested that the library be transferred to CDs for safekeeping. The obvious question was, "What file format should be used, and how should the transfer be undertaken?" Bob Kaspar said using specialty routines, such as PC99, requires a special disk format that not everyone has.
It was then suggested that we consider using the old standby "PC Transfer" create MS-DOS text files from TI file format, which might be able to then be burned on to CDs. Everyone agreed that this is a good time to get started on this project. It was recommended that we check out the WHT web site to find out what TI-99/4A files have already been archived. This would prevent duplication of efforts.
Harry Hoffman said he brought in a PEB, equipped with two working disk drives, for Alan Hewston to use. We hope this will give Alan the tools he needs to continue his comparative investigation of TI games. Alan reported that "Digital Press", a collector's guide to classic electronic games, has included a fifteen page section devoted to known cartridge games for the TI-99/4A. The games are cataloged as to rarity and collection market value (price). Some rare carts are listed at an astounding $70. The listing of the TI games can be found at: www.digitpress.com.
There was a lively discussion regarding the reinstatement of plaques for the Jim Peterson Achievement Awards. Although a very generous offer was received from a member of the TI community to subsidize the costs associated with award plaques, the TI-Chips attending the meeting unanimously decided to stay with award certificates.
I inquired as to the status of the thumbnail idea for the member's gallery on our web site. Craig Getty said he was unable to devote the time needed to create thumbnails required to design the additional web page. I said I would be happy to create the thumbnails for him, and E-mail the thumbnail JPGs to him to insert in the site.
Bob Kaspar brought in the collection of disks that he said wouldn't load and run on his TI-99/4A. Harry noted that some of the disk catalogs listed Gram Cracker files. This confirmed our suspicion that Bob needed Gram Cracker to run certain files. Jack Koryta brought in his P-Gram card and docs for Bob to try, but Bob said he didn't have a P-Box and was using a Corcomp system expansion sidecar instead. Bob said he appreciated our help and efforts on his behalf.
Harry won the monthly 50:50 raffle. Congratulations, Harry.
The next meeting of the TI-Chips will be on October 19th, from 10:00 AM 'till noon in the Story Time Room in the North Royalton branch library.