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Alive 13

Atariada Report

        Always when you enter Prague, it is already much later than 
        previously scheduled. And like all the previous years, you will 
        get lost on pretty much the same roads as before. This is when 
        the unavoidable confusion about which road to chose kicks in and 
        you finally realize that you must be on the way to the Atariada 

        This year, twh and I went to Prostejov again. And believe it or
        not, twh managed to find somebody, who was crazy enough, to join
        us: Livio joined us for his very 1st appearance at Atariada.
        Welcome to the Atari scene Livio!

        We started on Friday, and after a long journey we reached 
        Ollomouc around 5 AM. After banging heavily on his front door, I 
        am sure Krupkaj felt blessed to become kicked out of bed by us. 
        We managed to move our gear into his flat, and I believe he felt 
        relieved when we started our - more or less refreshing - 3 hour 
        sleeping break.

        Jan left us in the morning, in order to get some gear moved to
        the party place. Since we already knew the neighbourhood of
        Ollomouc from previous visits, we easily found our way to the
        party place and got our usual table to the right of the
        entrance. We quickly installed an Atari XE and my Falcon, when
        we discovered some bad news. My good old PC keyboard, which I
        purchased with my falcon back in 1996, didn't survive the
        journey. R.I.P. Lucky for me, a replacement was quickly found:
        Bob!k gave me his AT Keyboard and so I could use my Falcon.

        After the keyboard issue had been resolved, I looked a bit 
        around. Fandal released a new MultiJoy game called Astro4 Road 
        (msx is from Raster). The aim of the game is to avoid background 
        collisions or in general any way of depleting your shield. The 
        2nd aim is to force the enemy player to hit the background 
        resulting in shield energy loss. This is where the multiplayer 
        aspect kicks in. Astro4 Road offers fast paced action and a 
        plays fun like hell.

        Besides there was also a new issue of the legendary Czech Flop
        disk magazine released and best of all, Fandal gave me a CD
        containing all files of his well known webpage --- Compared to other Atari events,
        Atariada is quite unique because of its cool lectures. After a
        long opening ceremony, I was allowed to speak about using the
        MVC programming paradigm for creating games on the Falcon using
        the LUA programming language.

        kRadD speaks about LUA...

        The next speech was by Bohdan, who presented a new website for 
        the Czech speaking Atari folks. Since many Czech guys barely 
        speak English it seems to make sense, on the other hand it would 
        be nice to have an English translation, because I guess most 
        people on this planet don't speak Czech or related Languages. 
        Despite the fact that I am one of these people, I learned a few 
        more Czech words this year. I remember "hora" seems to be a 
        mountain, but I already forgot the translation for "black". But 
        fortunately there is a Czech beer brand called "black mountain", 
        so I will have a chance to remember it next year :-).

        After Bohdan's recitation there was a demonstration of the
        potential of the CT60. It was amazing to see an ATARI computer
        playing a DIVX encoded video!

        After the presentations, I bought an Eiffel interface from XI / 
        Satantronic. In the afternoon I modified some sprite routines, 
        which were "ripped" from Deez's code. Erm, well I didn't really 
        rip em, in fact he gave them to me some time ago.

        Out of the sudden another German guy arrived. His name was
        Christian, and we had already met at the E-JagFest some years
        ago. Since we had no language barrier between us :) he told me,
        that he is going to organize a little ATARI meeting near the
        Bavarian/Czech border. What he told me sounded really promising,
        I hope to be there in September.

        Afterwards I had a nice MultiCervi game and it was time for 
        another surprise. For the first time in Atariada history an 
        afterparty was announced. Last year the afterparty was in a pub 
        in Ollomouc and also quite nice, but this time, everybody was 
        invited to join a barbeque at a campfire!

        Since the organisers still remembered Mr.XY when creating their
        shopping lists for beer and such, I decided to join Zdenek,
        Pepax and Livio on their way to the supermarket. This was mainly
        to avoid them buying an oversized stock of beer for us. Besides
        the beer we also found some "original" Thuringian sausages in
        the cold treasure chests of the supermarket. We thought that it
        would be fun, to test if they are really "original" or just some
        lame fake :)

        Back at the party, we continued coding and gaming and talked 
        until about 9 o'clock. Before we left the party place, the 
        typical photo war (each one with a camera take a photo of any 
        other person with a camera) took place. See the results at twh's 
        gallery web page ( ).

        The "say-good-bye-ceremony" was short this time, but only
        because the afterparty was about to begin. The trip to the
        afterparty was about 40 km and at the end we had a funny picture
        on the navigation system. It seems we were lost in "mystic
        spriteland" since the navigation system was unable to calculate
        a route to any other road. So we were literally in the middle of
        a green nowhere. Funny! However, it didn't trouble us since we
        only needed to follow Fandals car. We were followed by XI, so
        nobody taking part in this Atari "parade" could get lost by
        accident. In addition to that the condition of the "road"
        strictly permitted speeds above 60 km/h.

        Mystic Spriteland?

        In the end we reached the barbeque location inside a small 
        village. Later the organizers (Zdenek, Bodan, Krupkaj, Bob!k) 
        joined us, so we were about 15 people. It was time for the 
        "original" Thuringian sausage test. The Czech and Slowakians 
        laughed about them and called them "bananas". So it was time to 
        let twh as a real Thuringian guy chew on them. From his 
        judgement they tasted quite nice but he had also to say that 
        weren't original. Well there was one thing that was "original" 
        and that was the beer ("pivo" in Czech), depleting the stocks we 
        had a very nice time!

        Next day, we left to travel home. twh and Livio were dead tired,
        and while I played my Manowar CD, they felt asleep to the sound
        of the loudest band on this planet.

                                                   kRadD for Alive, 2006

Alive 13