Archive for August, 2007

New ZX Spectrum Game

Friday, August 31st, 2007

If you haven’t noticed yet, I have put online a Sinclair ZX Spectrum game I wrote for my wife’s birthday last year: “Jib Goes Shopping“. I don’t really remember why I wrote this for the Spectrum, but I found it a really neat machine to program for.

Good news, everybody!

Thursday, August 30th, 2007

No, I am not Doctor Nick Riviera, even though I have been watching a lot of Simpsons episodes lately. The CVS server is back, and thanks to some plastic surgery it has become an SVN server. You may call her Francine.

2000th Entry!

Wednesday, August 29th, 2007

I have just added the 2000th entry to the directory: Congratulations.
Update: I had to delete a couple of broken entries, falling back to 1997, so I quickly added a few new ones, meaning we now have a second 2000th entry, CellarDoor. And, of course, there has always been Heimcomputer, the 2000th link if you do not take deleted entries into account…

Server moved

Wednesday, August 22nd, 2007

To save money I have moved the site from a physical to a virtual server. By now everything except the CVS server should be working again.

Ditched AdSense

Tuesday, August 21st, 2007

I just removed the AdSense ads for There are hardly any commercial offerings for vintage gaming enthusiasts, resulting in both CTR and CPC near zero. There is no point in annoying everybody (including myself) with it.

Wikipedia popups

Saturday, August 18th, 2007

I have finally implemented a way to integrate the numerous relevant Wikipedia pages into the directory without adding hundreds of identically-looking entries. There are now over 800 keywords followed by a small question mark that when clicked on pop up the corresponding Wikipedia article. This effectively adds more than 600 Wikipedia pages to the directory.

Downtime today

Friday, August 17th, 2007

In case anybody wondered why the site was down today: Some time last Friday (possibly before), my provider Host Europe silently and slowly took away hard disk space from my virtual server at a rate of a few kB/sec. After some days (probably last night) the MySQL server stopped working because the disk was full. After I had opened a support ticket, they fixed it, and I am back to the 30 GB I pay for, but the ticket is still open, and they have not commented the issue yet. My guess: When they are short on disk space, they just take it from existing servers and hope the operators won’t notice. Un-fucking-glaublich.

Genesis Plus Linux port

Friday, August 17th, 2007

Astoundingly nobody seems to have ported Genesis Plus to Linux yet. (A GameCube Linux port seems to exist, though.) Anyway, I have ported the DOS (Allegro) and Windows (SDL) versions to Linux. Get the source code here. (I will add it to the emulator page later.)

Thumbnails fixed

Thursday, August 16th, 2007

After switching to Debian, the thumbnail quality deteriorated. The problem seems to have been the X server (Xvfb), and switching to a VNC X server (and setting the display depth to 24 bits, for that matter) increased the rendering quality a lot. It also allows me to monitor thumbnail generation, making it much easier to find problems and broken entries. I have also fixed the not-so-clever khtml2png resizing method (makes sure that thumbnails are of the given size in spite of any scrollbars that may appear when rendering), speeding up thumbnail generation considerably. I also did the documented but unimplemented –time parameter. If anybody still uses khtml2png 2.0.5, you can find the patch here. Syndication

Wednesday, August 15th, 2007

The database is now available for download under a Creative Commons license, allowing you to use the nearly 2000 entries in your own directory or link section. The generator script allows downloading the entire database or a specific category (including all subcategories). What is currently missing is the language information – RSS 2.0 does not seem to allow per-item language information. Check the syndication page for more information.