Just a fan site. Looking for official stuff? Try microware.com.

http://os9al.com Ed# 02-06-30 18:24
/dd/os9al OS-9 Al
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This space for rent...

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Who is this OS-9 guy, anyway?

Hi there and thank you for your interest in my site. My name is Allen Huffman and I first became aware of the "OS-9 Operating System" around 1982. At that time I had just aquired my second home computer—a Radio Shack TRS-80 Color Computer. Don, the salesman who helped me get it, also loaned me a 300 baud accoustic coupled modem to let me dial into Bulletin Board Systems (BBS) in Houston, Texas. He also let me dial into his Color Computer one time to look at "OS-9 Level 1". I didn't actually do anything then, but that was my first encounter with the OS-9 shell prompt. It would be several years later before I touched OS-9 again.

Several years later I touched OS-9 again indirectly. Radio Shack had quite a few disk based Color Computer games that ran on top of OS-9. The software was "stand alone" meaning you didn't have to own a copy of OS-9 to use it. Programs such as Sierra Online's Leisure Suite Larry and Kings Quest III all booted into OS-9. In fact, many of the disk based games for the Color Computer actually were OS-9 programs. Yes, there was a time when OS-9 software was commercially available at Radio Shack stores and dealers everywhere.

In addition to games, one could buy the full OS-9 package for the Color Computer and run it instead of the built-in Disk Extended Color Basic. The Basic, written by Microsoft, normally was the first thing you saw when you turned on a Color Computer. Loading OS-9 from disk allowed you to run a full OS instead of a dedicated programming language. In those days, Color Computer users were fairly split between "Disk Basic" and "OS-9" users much like today's PC crowd is split between Windows and Linux.

Eventually I wanted to run a BBS of my own, but most Disk Basic systems required you to give up the use of your computer while they ran the BBS software. I did far too much with my computer to allow this, so I started looking into OS-9 as a solution. OS-9 was a Unix-like multi user and multi tasking environment. It would eventually enable me to run a multiple line BBS on my little home computer while still giving me access to it as well. For years I ran Alpha Software's OS-9 Level 2 BBS program as well as StG Net by Scott Gripentrog. I learned quite a bit about OS-9 and spent much time enhancing the system with new features.

In 1990 I formed a Color Computer software company called Sub-Etha Software. Together with my partner, Terry Todd, I wrote several programs which were sold through a national magazine and at computer shows in Atlanta, Chicago and Des Moines. In Atlanta we met Joel Hegberg who had many of his programs already published. By 1991 we were all working on OS-9 programs and soon Joel would move on to a next generation OS-9 machine: Interactive Media System's MM/1.

In 1995, after meeting a fellow OS-9 enthusiast at a show in Chicago, I got the chance to go to work for Microware teaching OS-9 classes. My goal was to work for either Microware or Disney, and Microware got to me first. The rest, as they say, is history.

On July 18th, 2001, my employment with Microware ended and I began to go back to my roots as an OS-9 hobbyists. With that said, allow me to once again stress that this is a personal home page and is in no way connected with Microware or anyone else I happen to mention within these pages. For official information on OS-9, visit www.microware.com.

My resume may be viewed here.

Thanks for stopping by! -- OS-9 Al

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Site contents © 2001-2002 by Allen Huffman. OS-9 and all related trademarks belong to Microware Systems Corporation (or, I guess, RadiSys since they now own Microware). This site has no affiliation with Microware (or RadiSys). While I would like to think that every bit of information on this site is accurate, most likely there are many errors. If you need official information about anything discussed here, go to the manufacturer. I'm just an end user who enjoys the product. Peace.