Author and maintainer of C64OS.com
See nacu.ca for a full bio
I've been a Commodore 8-bit user since I discovered my first computer, a broken Vic-20, under the bed in my parents' guest room when I was 5 years old. They had it repaired for $40 and my journey into computing began.
When I was 9 years old, I got my first Commodore 64 for Christmas in 1990. It changed my life. During the mid 90s I discovered Creative Micro Designs and started buying as much hardware as I could afford. I ended up with numerous C64's C64c's, c128's, a couple of Vic-20's, a c128D and an SX-64. I also got a SuperCPU64 and SuperCPU128 both maxed out with 16megs of SuperRam. I got a Turbo232 and a 33.6Kbps modem and started surfing the web via a dialup shell account. My collection of great hardware kept growing to include a smartmouse, a RamLink, a CMD HD and a SID Symphony. I also acquired numerous Commodore disk drives, 1541's, 1541 II's, 1571's and a 1581.
I started to attend Commodore Expos in the United States in 1998 when I was 17 years old. I showed up with a C64 breadbin slung over my back on a guitar strap. I was in heaven. There were so many cool people and so much great activity going on. I started to dabble more seriously into programming in the late 90s. Shortly thereafter I got hold of an IDE64, and discovered that Jolz Maginnis from Australia was working on a preemptively multi–tasking Unix–like OS for the SuperCPU64, WiNGs (née JOS). I worked with him over IRC to help him debug the TCP/IP stack and my life changed again.
With his tremendous help I taught myself to program in C, and began cross compiling WiNGs software on an iMac and FTPing it to my 64. I cut my teeth writing a bunch of software I had only ever dreamed of having on my C64 when I was kid. And I began to give presentations at Commodore Expos showing off such creations as a Movie player and SpiffyPaint, a multi–layer drawing program. It was a fun and glorious time of my life that I'll never forget.
Eventually CMD shut its doors, and the SuperCPU sadly became unavailable. We all grew up, got jobs and moved on with our lives. I packed up my equipment when I moved houses and I didn't have the time to pull it back out. I got married, moved again, and now I've got two children.
When I came back to the scene after 8 years away, I found a bustling community, full of life and energy, with many new projects to fill in the gaps where CMD had left off. A high speed RS232 adaptor and a 56K modem are no longer relevant to today's world. But now we have multiple ethernet adaptors, commercially available. The CMD HD, and RamLink seem woefully ancient, with bulky SCSI spinning harddisks, or 30 pin RAM simms. Instead SD card adaptors are now commercially available in sizes that make them much more useable. Plus they make exchanging data with a PC/Mac easier and faster than it ever was in the heyday.
The SuperCPU is not available. But there are lots of C64s and they need our love. So I have forced myself to get used to the feeling and the pace of 1Mhz again. It was hard to go back from 20Mhz, and even harder to go back from 2.5Ghz. But you do get used to it. What the C64 lacks right now, is a platform upon which to write network–based applications. That's what I want to write, but there is very little out there to help me do that. So, instead, I'm writing a simple single–tasking OS, that will provide the essentials to make it easier to write the apps I've got a creative itch to work on; network–oriented with a consistent mouse–based UI.
This site is about my work on C64 OS, but it's also about helping new and returning users get informed about what is out there, so that you too can live and love your Commodore 64.
I've spent and will continue to spend hundreds of hours working on C64 OS, the Buyer's Guide and the other content of this site. If you want to support my work and help make these projects a reality, please consider sending me a donation via PayPal. Thank you for your support!