Commenting on https://mipmip.org
Previous mipmip.org comments in reverse orderFrom Dominc Uys, 2021-Apr-22, re /tidbits/
I'm so happy to have found the Grauniad Database piece on your site. I remembered reading it in an old Punch magazine years ago. You don't perhaps happen to know more or less the year this was first published?
[MLA: [Alas, I cannot help. Early 1970, I think, but that's just a guess. I recall first reading it around 1980 and laughing so hard it hurt!]]
From XXXXX, 2021-Jan-22, re /adv770/bugs.html
Thanks for the reply. I do appreciate the work that you programmers have put into this game. This is a follow up, with a few additional notes and clarifications.
[Thanks. But... could you perhaps mail me at email@example.com, so that I don't have to excise spoilers? In the meantime, version 2.21 is up and version 2.22 being worked on – see the bug list for details.]
1. I suppose the server complaint may be a bit unfair, as I am doing it from the cloud option and have not tried the download. I don't really know how this stuff works, I just know that several adventure sites for other point versions don't have any sort of delay. I as a player have done speedruns of Platt 550 [although I only started recently;, my best time so far is 9 minutes 47 seconds for all 550 points]. Thus I am used to spamming certain sequences that are used frequently [a possible spoiler omitted].
[This should no longer be a problem, see the bugs list. But if speed is what you are after, the cloud version is never going to be of use to you. For every command it'll run the PHP wrapper to re-invoke the executable, which will have to restore game's state from the disk dump, process the command and save the game state again. All that disk I/O is a slow business on a shared server.]
2.A clarification on the Desert Softlock I mentioned last time: It occurs when [a spoiler omitted.].
[Fixed - see the bug list.]
3. The Terse/Fast display mode is supposed to give you the long version of a description if the "look" commands is entered (the message displayed when activating the mode says so), but it gives the short description instead.
[Fixed - see the bug list.]
Now some odd command responses
4. I have found two seemingly non-existent words that the game uses as typo corrections: "fn" and "hm". I only happened upon hm by chance, but for both of these words, if something similar is typed (such as fj or hj) it will attempt to correct the word to fn or hm, and then say it doesn't recognize the new word. Maybe there is a deeper meaning to this, but it seems odd and unintentional
[Those are humanish words uttered in the dwarfish mode. Fixed - I just excluded them (and other similar) from typo correction.]
5. Two realted things I have found related to "leaves" and "foliage".
[Neither of these can be reproduced or indeed can happen, so I suspect you were seeing indirect results of non-fatal memory overwrites caused by long compound commands.]
5a. in the Narrow Corridor (above the watered beanstalk), the game says it doesn't recognize either word, even though it seems to recognize both in every other room.
5b. Usually the two are considered to be synonymous by the game, but this is not the case at the site of the fertilizer beanstalk. If you go there, "foliage" returns with a comment about the foliage being scruffy, but "leaves" returns a message saying "foliage? what foliage?"
6. Saying to "Drop" a liquid pours the liquid on the ground, even if it should have had another effect. [Spoiler omitted.]
[Fixed - see the bug list.]
I will keep looking into this game from time to time when I have the time, and maybe I 'll find something else notable. In the meantime, thanks for being so quick about all of this. I truly enjoy what the adventure programmers have put together over the years.
[Excllent! All further reports of imperfections are very welcome! So thanks again. But in the future, please do mail rather than using the guestbook. Mike
From XXXXX, 2021-Jan-14, re /adv770/bugs.html
A few notes (although I'm sure I'll have forgotten something)
[Gosh! That's a lot to respond to. :-) Thanks for your comments – they are appreciated! I'll be adding responses to individual points as I work through them.]
1.the first note is that the servers are extremely slow. this leads to other subpoints
1a. often times when spamming commands, the commands will be entered in the same command line, ruining the command. for example, hitting s [enter] e [enter] in quick succession places them both on the same command, tuning the pair do commands into a single se command. there are numerous situations were this is annoying.
1b. I assume this is a massive bug, but occasionally when commands are entered in quick succession, it seems to confuse the game. It will ask if you want instructions, and no matter what you say you will then lose everything in your inventory, be set to a high thirst value, have your score set to 0, and all light (even natural light such as above ground) disappears. After you inevitably die, if you respawn there is still no light, and if you exit the building after this the game automatically ends with a score of 0 points. This ends up killing me off all the time, and is quite annoying and presumably unintentional. This also sometimes happens if too many commands are strung together with semicolons.
[That certainly sounds like a serious bug – very likely a memory overwrite. Probably not easy to find. Wish me luck! :-(]
2. related to the prior note, there should be a way to disable help (Maybe I just missed it?). The time this becomes a especially notable problem is in the various mazes that take several turns to solve, where one will have taken the right path the entire time, but still be offered help halfway through
[Good point. I'll think about mitigations.]
2a. Whenever a question comes up, it takes the place of the ordinary outcome of the command, and immediately responds to the input command. this means that when help is offered, your command will essentially be cancelled, and if you had commanded "n" as a north command the game automatically takes it as a "no" command, despite there not having been a question when the command was input.
[It is unfortunate that in English NO is an abbreviation of NORTH. I can see a possible way around the difficulty, but it probably would require a major surgery on the existing A-code engine, so won't be quick.]
3.The salt water found on the beach cannot be used to fill a container. While it obviously has no purpose, it makes no sense for to be standing next to the sea but "have nothing with which to fill the [container]"
[Ouch! Will be fixed in the next version.]
4. The desert is an interesting location, for which there are a few things
4a. I assume the to seemingly random protrusions on the eastern edge of the desert are for dropping the sunstone on, to change it's color and thus prevent softlocking. Despite this, there is still a softlock 2 rooms east of the tower and the room directly north of it, where there is no access to a drop point, so because the game doesn't allow things to be dropped in the sand, the player is permanently confined to those two rooms
4b. on the topic of the desert outcroppings, Dwarves can spawn on them. In general, dwarves in adventure cannot spawn anywhere where there is light (except for the tower), nor do they spawn beyond the troll bridge (except in the dwarf fortress on the island), so this seems to be an oversight.
4c. the desert is supposed to be a future version of the basalt shelf. This creates an interesting opportunity for item repair. the vase, for example, might toggle back an forth between the worthless shards and the full vase by changing the time. As a potential expansion, there might be something in the vase that could only be used by breaking it open, and then repairing it afterwards can allow the vase to be collected.
5. There are several things that are described in detail that a player shouldn't be able to see without light. this includes killing enemies (I noticed particularly throwing an axe at Y2 after turning off a lamp, or in general killing a dwarf after the horn is used), the sequence with the flask in the pentagram chamber, and the use of the vial and teeth for the slime and goblins, respectively
6. A minor nitpick, but "reflect" seems like it should count as a magic word for the post game puzzle. I know "plover" isn't, but it is generally agreed that there is a hidden passage from Y2 to the Plover room, and Reflect (like the magic words) needs to be spelled out in full to take effect
[Good point. Perhaps I'll allow it to be included, but won't insist on it &ndash with some appropriate comment from the guide.]
6a. With this last part in mind as well, there shouldn't rally be a reaction to saying plover at fake Y2 (near the catacombs). The response to doing so (identical to the plugh response) heavily implies that plover is magic, and doesn't really make sense.
[That's Adv550 legacy. I suppose I could solve that by including PLOVER optionally in the list too.]
Additional room for expansion (although maybe I just missed some parts, I did beat the game but only once):
[You didn't beat it. It kindly consented to declare you a winner. It can be beaten, but to the best of my knowledge nobody has actually done so yet. Players just aren't as thorough as they used to be. :-)]
7. In rehash of the the Witt's end concept, getting an arbitrary point for putting the sewer spoon in the post game flooded chamber (the ending room from adventure 550), where you keep the spoon beyond the cave's closing. A seemingly random way to make use of a useless object.
8. The causeway has always seemed to draw a strange parallel to the dark cave in the desert (next to the dry riverbank). It would be interesting to make any items thrown into the causeway be sent to the desert riverbed. IF you did make an 880 point version, these locations would both probably see separate expansions, but linking them in 770 would be a useless but interesting quirk of the game.
9. I haven't really made sure this is not the case in adv. 770, but in adv. 550 it is misleading for the announcer to say to proceed to the treasure room at the end of the game when the treasure room is an actual location (the place where the beads are). There should be some kind of purpose for going there at the end of the game, and maybe even an exit to some secret treasure or points cache.
[MLA: Once again, thanks for the comments! Mike.]
From Reuben Thomas, 2020-Nov-12, re /C_games/
Typo: to link "chimaera" you need "-lm" not "-ml".
[MLA: Good point! Have fixed -- thank you.]
From Julien Davis, 2020-Jul-02, re /polemics/Mathematics.html
Love it! I couldn't agree more with your thesis! So many sadly miss the point. Happy memories of the Hiatt Baker years. Much water under the bridge!!??
From Andrewnat, 2020-May-16, re https://mipmip.org
Astonishing personality of expression. Keep it up!
[MLA: Um... If you say so. :-)]
From Jonathan Ellis, 2020-Jan-30, re /adv550/
Long time no see :-) Any further news in the world of Adventure development?
Also, I'm on the lookout for any way of playing my old executables on a Windows 10 64-bit setup...
From Nathanael Culver, 2020-Jan-23, re /adv440/
I've visited your site many times; long past time I dropped a comment.
Thank you for maintaining this site. My own Adventuring dates back to the late '70s, which I spent numerous late night in the undergrad computer lab at my alma mater being chased by pirates and cave dwarves rather than finishing projects. Adventure led to Infocom in the '80s, and nothing has given me so much pleasure, computer-game-wise, since.
I maintain an Adventure family tree at advent.jenandcal.familyds.org with a number of links to your site.
[MLA: Always a pleasure to hear from somebody remembering "the old days"! :-) I too recall with great pleasure my encounter in the '70s on my employer's Primes first with the 350 version and then with the 440 and 550 ones. I must say, your Adventure family tree is impressive -- thanks for the link!]
From Ethan Johnson, 2019-Jul-26, re /dev/acode/
Greetings Mr. Arnautov,
My name is Ethan Johnson, I'm a tech and gaming researcher. I wanted to contact you regarding a new discovery that has been made by some friends of mine. It appears to be a 1982 version of David Platt's Adventure in the full A-code source code. We've scanned this fully and have been looking to get some further information on it.
I've sent feelers out to Mr. Platt and I would love some of your own insight on this discovery. Feel free to contact me via the verification email.
[MLA: Well, 1984 versions of of the minger, executive and the game's A-code source, have been available on this website since 2012, so hardly "irretrievably list". :-) But I would certainly like to compare what I have with any extant 1982 versions.]
From Chris Reedy, 2019-Feb-19, re /acode/acode-texts.html
Your example with the chair doesn't seem to work as described.
Here's my .acd file:
The # is not something mortal, so cannot be killed!
OBJECT -CHAIR1, CHAIR, SEAT
say no.kill.things, chair1
When I run this I get:
The is not something mortal, so cannot be killed!
Looking at the code in getnames.c (acdc-12.38 from acode-12.74 downloaded on Jan 30, 2019), I think maybe the statement "return(np)" on line 126 is the problem. That appears to keep "chair" from being added to the vocabulary. Should the return maybe be "continue" instead?
Thanks for the work you've done on this, Chris
[MLA: Well, bless me! Somebody else trying to use A-code! :-) Am responding by email.]
From John Hollerton, 2017-Dec-11, re https://mipmip.org
Thanks for putting these up, Mike. They remind me of my early days at Glaxo where a quick game of Adventure or Star Trek brightened up the end of the day. I hope you are doing well. Best wishes.
[MLA: I am reasonably well, thank you. Hope you are like-wise. And yes, Glaxo was unusual in sanctioning that games package.]
From Peter Murray-Rust, 2017-Apr-02, re https://mipmip.org
You've fooled me (and it's April 2nd). I submitted a Dead Crow comment and the page "thanks me for a tasty bit of Spam" and assures me the message has been chomped and not sent to the moderator. I assumed I had been rated as a bot and ignored. So I am trying another page in case the message is PythonSketch related.
[MLA: The page does say "Comments containing URLs or links will be ignored!". But seeing that it's you, Peter, I am reinstating below the "chomped" comment.]
From Peter Murray-Rust, 2017-Apr-02, re /tidbits/dead-crow.html
Loved it, but I don't remember seeing it at Greenford. What year? Was the MiCrowVax ours? Seriously, the education that the "UNIX systems Group" gave me was priceless. Not only in code but to develop the right way of evolving a community with mutual respect (and not necessarily respect for authority).I am still going very strong - have been funded to "change the world". http://contentmine.org . I write "liberation code", which challenges injustice (especially commercial scientific publishers). There's quite a lot of USG in that. Feel free to mail.
[MLA: No, it wasn't ours. No idea where/when it came from. Thanks for your kind words! And I am sure I do not need to tell you that I thoroughly approve of what you are doing. More power to your elbow!]
From Tom Perrine, 2017-Mar-28, re /orig550/info.html
PL6 was the programming language at Honeywell for GCOS8 operating system for Honeywell DPS8 mainframes. It was used to re-write and re-implement many of the more complex routines of the operating system during the very early 1980s. I encountered it as a student intern from 1980-1983.
I played this particular version of adventure around that time.
[MLA: Happy memories, eh?]
From Robert Barnes, 2017-Feb-28, re /tidbits/project.html
Brilliant, I've been looking for this. I remember reading it when it was published in Datamation. Do you have the illustrations - I particularly like the Grovelling Room.
[MLA: Alas, no. That text is all I have.]
From Jesse, 2016-Aug-21, re /adv770
I don't see a clear spoiler policy stated for this page, but I would like to avoid making the situation any worse in that regard. I don't want a hint, but there are questions I have that could constitute spoilers, so can we continue this thread via. e-mail?
[MLA: Sure. You can always mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.]
From David Coyle, 2016-Aug-19, re /adv770
I need your help with adventure 770. [...] Could you help me?
I have gone back to play some of the old versions of this game (played 350, 366, 370, 551)
I was going to play the 430, 440, 501, 550, 660, 770 and 1000 in that order. (I skiped the 430, 440, 501, 550 because I heard good things the 551 but indended to go back to the others. I enjoyed the 551 and was going to go back to the 430, when I found a lot of talk about how good the 770 was. So I played your version. I loved it so far.
[MLA: A suitably effective prod provided via email.]
From Jesse Silverman, 2016-Aug-16, re /adv770
I'd feel bad about complaining, but you didn't write these to get rich, you wrote them to have people play them, most especially this one which contains the most of your original work. So by finding any abnormalities I'm just helping you perfect something you've been working on as one of my friends would say "since forever".
In the most recent version I am noticing abnormalities in how you count numbers of turns. [...]
[MLA: Investigation shows that builds using the A-code library mode (HTML, CGI and OSX ones) do indeed have a problem with counting turns. This will be fixed in version 2.15.]
From Jesse, 2016-Aug-13, re /adv770
Playing your 770 point version of Adventure. I feel there are two groups of people who should play this. Everyone who thinks that expanding the forest is a great idea, to give the feeling of being in an actual real forest that would be represented realistically by dozens of locations of course would love it. People who think that sounds like an awful lot to map, if they feel they have to have a literal exhaustive map to not fear they missed some key place you can only get to by going one direction from one place--I haven't yet seen if that happens, but I am one of those people...
Anyway, if you thought it sounded just tedious, it does give the whole landscape a much more wholistic feel. Also, it proves that your game time isn't limited in number of turns, but solely lamp light. Anyway, back to the forest!! Thanks for the hard work, the love certainly shows, mate.
[MLA: Most kind... Thanks! And yes, I obviously agree with you about the forest – I always felt it to be too "thin" in the ancestral versions.]
From Jesse V. Silverman, 2016-Jul-31, re /adv770
What a labor of love!! I appreciate your explication of the choice to keep the "crude" parser in your Faq for Adventure 770, and I was one of those people who would always be asking "Why NOT Zoidberg?" --um, I mean "Why NOT an Infocom-style parser?" Anyway, I did notice for those who compulsively type in complete sentences and avail themselves of the definite articles that English speakers are so fond of...you do see some weirdness altho the command seems to have had the intended effect in the game world.
? take the keys and the lamp.
You take the keys.
You lamp the the.
Yes, I lamp the the, I lamp the Walrus, Goo Goo Ga Joob.
Thanks so much for all of the hard work! I'm back to exploring your world.
[MLA: OOPS!! Fixed in version 2.14 (uploaded just a moment ago). Glad you are enjoying the game anyway.]
From DJ Incendration, 2016-Apr-24, re /adv770
Hello! I REALLY like this game! I also would like to expand the game, and put a help menu in which includes hints for all puzzles and a walkthrough for those who need it. Will you please help me out with those? (I also want to include the way from every location to another. Thanks for helping!
[MLA: Always a pleasure to hear from an Adv770 player! As for any additions or changes, you are quite welcome to do as I did all those years ago with earlier versions: grab the published source and build on top of what is there. :-)]]
From Dave Curr, 2016-Mar-14, re /adv770
Hi Mike, hope you're well....I see ADV770 has made it to the iPad
[MLA: Indeed it has, thanks to Brian Ball's efforts!]
From Chris Wang, 2016-Mar-7, re /tidbits/haiku.html
We're making a webpage, and we discovered the error haiku page and absolutely love it! How can we correctly credit you for these beautiful poems? Thanks!!
[MLA: Glad you enjoyed them, but they are not mine. They were penned by that prolific author known as Anon.]
From Jason Dyer, 2015-Dec-19, re /adv440
Got to the point where the cave should have "closed" -- got all the treasures (although I had to use coins for lamp) and unfortunately when I believe the cave closing happens the game crashes instead. I can send a save attachment if you have an email I can use.
[MLA: Yes, please. I'll have a look, though it's not my code, of course, so no promises. :-)]
From Nancy Protzman, 2015-Aug-22, re /adv770
Tried to get an ID but got a 404 message.
[MLA: Er... Ah... Apologies! Fixed now. Please try again.]
From Alexander, 2015-Aug-5, re /adv770
Continuing from the last comments:
In order to port this game to the more common program mentioned earlier, I need the directions, items, etc to/in each room.
[MLA: It's all in the A-code source, which you already have, and nowhere else.]
From Alexander, 2015-Aug-5, re /adv770
This is a great series of Adventure games. I hope that in the next installment (880, 990, etc.) has the 3 rooms taken out from A-440 (meaning Adv440) included with the developments suggested. Also, in order for me to port this game to Inform (a more common program for creating these kinds of games (not only Adventure, but many other games of the same type.)
From Alexander, 2015-Jun-25, re /adv770
Where can I find Windows executables of Adventure 770 (versions before the Browser-defaulted ones)?
Also, I'm stuck in the catacombs, and after looking at the source text, I don't know why the loud voices heard in the crown kill me.
[MLA: Run the same executable with the /C switch in the command window. The browser interface is just an overlay.
If you want help, email me directly.]
From Alexander, 2015-Jun-16, re /adv770
Where can I find the original 1979 source code for Adventure 550?
[MLA: I don't think it exists. The 1982 code is on this website.]
From Alexander Grigalus-Kern, 2015-Jun-16, re /adv770
A couple more typos still found in version 2.11. FOR example, "passeth away" is not spelled correctly, and also, the pirate's line "hie meself" is written incorrectly.
[MLA: They aren't typos. Google them!]
THIRDLY, I would like to have all the versions of Adventure 770, including: 1.0, 1.01, 1.02, 1.03, 1.04, etc., to 2.10.
[MLA: Er... why?]
Fourth, I would like the player log of the person you mentioned in the FAQ completing the game in the least amount of turns. Thanks again!
[MLA: Ain't got it.]
From Alexander, 2015-Jun-11, re /adv770
A great but super hard version of Adventure. I just want to know where to get the game's full source text (not the code, but the TEXT ONLY). I was thinking of porting this game to Inform 7, a more mainstream IF compiler.
[MLA: Just get the A-code source -- the files you want are there. But I strongly suggest familiarising yourself with A-code text handling too.]
From Alexander, 2015-Feb-10, re /adv770
This is a great game! I can't wait until I can view the source text!
[MLA: Glad you enjoyed it! :-)]
From Mike Arnautoff, 2014-Sep-5, re https://mipmip.org
Robt.Cherny gave me info about
your address online, So here I am saying Hello there! Hope all is well with you and family during these trouble times.
From Adam McCullough, 2014-Jun-18, re /adv770
Looks like the id generation page for adventure 770 is not working -- I get a 404 error when I try to generate one. Was hoping to play on my tablet. :)
[MLA: Sorry about that... Fixed now -- enjouy the game!]
From gavin flower, 2012-Oct-28, re https://mipmip.org
The difference between an Experienced Developer and a Trainee: is that an Experienced Developer makes mistakes at a faster rate, while Trainees agonise over theirs!
[MLA: I can confirm this observation from personal experience. :-)]
From Mike Johansen, 2012-Oct-25, re /adv440
I am stumped on Adventure 440. I ended up in the giant's dungeon and cannot get out. There was one time where I briefly saw a mouse and it took off. I did figure out a use for the owl: Whenever I'm accosted by dwarves, I turn off my lamp and type "hoot" and it comes and eats the dwarves. Also, when I get the orb and drop it, a wizard teleports me and the orb to a random location. I discovered a room with a stalagtite and if you go down it takes you to a maze of passages all alike. Is this the same as the pirate's maze? I ended up at a dead end but SE, N, then D did not get me out. I need help
[MLA: help provided via private email]
From Chalky, 2012-Oct-9, re https://mipmip.org
Thank you Arch Wiz. Mike Chalkley recommended your site, & he sends his compliments.
[MLA: :-) Please give my regards to Mike!]
From Steve Greenham, 2012-May-9, re https://mipmip.org
Hope you are well Mike. I was just wondering if you documented triple typo protection? A friend suggested you could sell it to Google!
[MLA: I am well enough, thanks! As for the triple-typo, the idea belongs to my former employer – that's what my contract said.]
From Angel Tripp, 2012-Apr-6, re /czech
More czech poems please! Love the first one it makes sense in english
[MLA: Glad to hear that! :-) But I regret to say that my Czech is no longer good enough for poetry, so I doubt there's any more to come.]
From Sajin, 2012-Mar-5, re /advfamily.html
Your work is great, not only highly evolved Adventure, but also historical research and archive. I'm engrossed in various Adventures!
[MLA: Kind of you to say so, but the historical research is Russel Dalenberg's work -- other than the restoration work on Adv440 and Adv550 I can claim no credit for it.]
From john allen, 2011-Nov-21, re https://mipmip.org
Halcyon days at Greenford working with you, Gordon Lack (on the PRIME side of life) and Tim Dickens, Richard Pipe and Lord John ( DIGITALly enhanced).
[MLA: Actually, for me that combination of names suggests a not very happy period of my professional life. Just goes to show I suppose :-)]
From KG, 2011-Jun-14, re /adv770
Help! I'm stuck in "dwarvish" mode and i need it back in english...what do i do?
[MLA: Um... you do what the guide advised you to do: say ENGLISH (in Dwarvish, of course!).]
From Will O'Donovan, 2011-Jun-5, re /adv770
There is no executable in adv770.dmg, just adv770.png, installing.rtf, and README.rtg
[MLA: Ouch!! Apologies for the SANAFU. Fixed now.]
From Magreve, 2011-Apr-19, re /polemics
Am not going to read all your discussions, but started on the religious ones. Just 2 things: I was on retreat once, and priest started ragging on secular humanists. I raised my hand and said some of my best friends were SH, and I had been a faithful practicing UU for _years_ before returning to the RCC, and how dare he criticize kind, caring people? Jesus would not have done that. He came back in afternoon session and apologized to group. 2nd, the opposite of faith is not doubt, but certainty. Faith is a choice (and a practice, and we get better at what we practice at) I make every day, and it is not always easy and habit carries me at times, but that is what habits are for. Thanks for the poster JPG, it is good to revisit past from time to time. Kind regards, Magreve (my SCAdian name)
[MLA: Well, good for you! Life would be better all around if more people felt the same way.]
From James Hurwitz, 2011-Mar-29, re /adv770
Installed windows version on old W2k laptop. Crashes at start with can't find Glk even though the dll is in the program directory
[MLA: Should be fixed now. Thanks for the fix James!]
From Steve, 2011-Mar-19, re /adv440
Interesting notes on adv440. When I was at university in the UK in 1978, studying electrical engineering, I'd heard about this game called "adventure". "Practical Computing" magazine had asked people to write in with info about the computers they were using, and I sent a note about the university systems, and asking for info about "Adventure". This had two effects: 1) I got reprimanded by the computer centre director for exposing system details. 2) Jack Pike contacted me and offered me tapes of what I now know to be adv440. I accepted Jack's offer, and still have those two paper tapes somewhere (in a box, after many house moves). The program needed 40K memory, and the undergrad system I had access to only permitted 25K per user, so it took me some time to rewrite the program to run in that. I had to move the whole in-memory database to a direct-access file, and then ended up trimming error messages character by character until I finally got it to load! We started to play, but I had no idea how far it had spread until I heard computer science folks at the table beside me in the cafeteria: "have you found the volcano?" "there's a Volcano?!!". Soon after I got another summons from the computer centre director :( He dropped a pile of fanfold paper on the table in front of me; the Adventure source. Then he asked me why 80% of billable computer time that month was down to people running that program! To my pleasant surprise he simply asked me to restrict access to my friends, instead of leaving it open. I suddenly acquired lot of new friends :) Ah, happy days. Steve
[MLA: Happy days indeed! :-) }]
From Klogan, 2011-Mar-6, re /polemics/Mathematics.html
The majority of math is route. It is not the total answer to the questions of the universe. It is a grid we have placed over reality (whatever that may be) that works a certain amount of the time and not others. It is imperfect. This is the best we have right now.
[MLA: Now, there I agree entirely! But it being so casts no light on the mysterious "forcing" of mathematical innovation.]
From Klogan, 2011-Mar-6, re /polemics/Mathematics.html
I have always thought that math, while extremely valuable, is difficult, boring and tedious. I love creative problem solving of other kinds.
[MLA: I am forced to conclude that you never encountered real mathematics, which is supremely creative.]
From John, 2011-Jan-22, re /polemics/Mathematics.html
Very good and interesting read.
[MLA: Thank you! (That was about my piece on mathematics not being analytical.)]
From Susan Farmer, 2010-Oct-8, re /downloads.html
I think I'm in heaven! :-D I have to ask, what is A-code? I've not been involved in programming in years. I've still got a print of the original DEC version from back in the day. I've been trying to find Windows ports of the various versions -- and now I even find some new versions too! :-D
[MLA: A-code is an adventure-writing language. Enjoy yourself! :-)]
From karen priest, 2010-Jun-9, re /tidbits/neologism.html
how do I access Wash. Post's neologisms et al later than 2005!?!? thanx!!!!!!!!!!
[MLA: Alas, I don't think one can. But do try "Uxbridge English Dictionary"!]
From Jim Sanderson, 2010-May-16, re /adv770
How can I upgrade to the latest version of Adv.770 Version 1.89 in Windows XP format? I cannot see this on your adventures download page.
[MLA: The Windows installer should work for all versions of Windows from Wind98 upwards. I have amended the downloads page to make this clear.]
From Mark Kuehn, 2010-May-2, re /adv770
The link on your download page to http://mipmip.org/adv770.dmg.zip is broken.
[MLA: Ooops! Fixed. Thanks for reporting!]
From Stephen, 2010-Apr-12, re /polemics/Mathematics.html
This critique of the thesis that mathematical truths are analytic (rather than synthetic) assumes a certain view of the nature of our grasp of concepts that defenders of this thesis (e.g., Leibniz, Frege) would reject. For this reason it misses the mark.
[MLA: Only if one accepts generalisation as an analytic operation, which is a pretty unattractive option!]
From grikdog, 2010-Jan-29, re /adv770
Adv770 icon is a fedora? I get the Indiana Jones connection, but wouldn't a conical cap with stars and sparkles be more appropriate?
[MLA: For me Adventure, and in particular Adv770, is more about exploration than about wizardly magic. Hence the fedora with its Indy Jones reference.]
From Ralph, 2009-Dec-30, re /tidbits/pronunciation.html
Hi, Just found your webspot by looking up "Dearest Creature in Creation" Checkout achristiansurvey.blogspot.com as to why I looked it up. Thank you, I will return many more times.
From Engiblyloabicknow, 2009-Dec-10, re https://mipmip.org
...please where can I buy a unicorn?
From Steve Ervin, 2009-Nov-7, re /adv770
Bug report; Hitting enter without entering a command causes segmentation fault on version 1.88 on MacOS. Thanks for making the game available on
[MLA: MacOS. Cause found -- will be fixed.]
From alexa108, 2009-Oct-20, re https://mipmip.org
Very nice site!
From Dave Coughlin, 2009-Sep-28, re https://mipmip.org
Hi Mike, how's things with you? Hope all is well, Best wishes, Dave p.s. I did hear from Mike R last year who seemed to be enjoying life.
From Brent Emerson, 2009-Aug-8, re /polemics/Euthyphro.html
I am reading with interest "The Euthyphro Dilemma Reconsidered" however, not being well-versed in formal logic, I don't understand the the meanings of the non-alphabetic symbols in your formal restatements, and, despite the explaination that follows, I'm afraid I'll miss something. Can you please tell me what the symbols mean or restate your restatements in plain English. Thanks.
From Rose Zubik, 2009-Mar-15, re /adv770
I loved the original Adventure game. Although I won the game (the cave closed) I did not get my Wizard Certificate because I did not get the treasure chest before the cave closed. I was delighted to discover that there are several new versions of the game. I have downloaded adv770 and am currently "exploring" the cave. Have you released a map which shows all the possible rooms to explore? I hate missing anything. Thank you Rose
[MLA: Sorry, no maps -- but I do provide prods for adventurers who get stuck; Just mail me the list of the stuff accumulated in the building.]
From David Finton, 2009-Jan-04, re /adv770
Hi Mike, I really like your 770 point Adventure! I've started playing it on the Mac in Terminal, but now I have the iPhone bug. Is there a zcode file for your 770 point Adventure? I can play my original Infocom games and the 350 point Adventure and other zcode games on the iPhone via Frotz. I did try taking your adv770.dat and importing it into my iPhone Frotz, but the app couldn't read it. Cheers, David Finton
[MLA: Sorry, no -- A-code has facilities which cannot be reproduced in zcode.]
From Pat Williams, 2008-Oct-26, re https://mipmip.org
[MLA: Glad you liked it!]
From Kevin Bengochea, 2008-Jun-27, re https://mipmip.org
Hi Mike, It's a voice from the past- Kevin Bengochea. I thought I'd give this another go again. It looks like things have evolved to the point where this is truly your baby. Credit is given when applicable, but frome some point in time it became exclusively yours. Congratulations, or my condolences, whichever is the more appropriate sentiment. Somehow I sense congratulations are more in order. When I was doing this previously, I always enjoyed our communications. As a result, I became interested in you as a person, and not limited to being the administrator of some obscure web-site. I notice that your email address is no longer tied to the British Musuem. Change of careers? It's not really my business, but I hope the last few years have treated you and your family kindly.
[MLA: "Obscure web-site" indeed! :-)]
From Walter Massie, 2008-May-12, re /adv770
Live long and prosper. I've been fond of Adventure, er,a pretty good while. The version that got me hooked was a 700 point version on an IBM 3090. I wonder have you heard of such a critter? Thanx, Walter
[MLA: Most likely ANON0700 in Russell Dalenbergs Adventure Family Tree.]
From Ludovic, 2008-Feb-14, re https://mipmip.org
'just been in and I love it :-)
From Stuart Hulbert, 2007-Aug-31, re https://mipmip.org
Hi Mike, I'd bet your thinking "what the hell" but I stumbled across your name on the internet whilst trying to find some old Photo's of the Primes (just to show a colleague the systems I cut my teeth on when I started at Glaxo). Lovely pictures and good to see you and Sue looking so well. Take care and all the best, Cheers, Stuart H. PS: If you are still in touch with John Wodehouse (Lord Kimberley), could you pass on my regards.
[MLA: Sure! Have done.]
From Jim Wilcoxson, 2007-May-21, re /prime_games
Hi Mike - I ran across your page of games for the Prime.
[....] I have Pr1mos running on a PS3. If you are interested in checking it out, just send me an email. Jim
[MLA: You bet I was interested! :-)]
From Unknown, 2006-Nov-22, re /tidbits/pronunciation.html
I found "The Chaos" hilarious. I am an ESL teacher and my students struggle with the varagies of our language all the time. Good job!
From Anonymous, 2006-Oct-6, re /adv770
Thanks very much for continuing and adding to this game! It's one of the best games I've ever played. Please keep up the good work.
From Ipod, 2006-20-Jul, re /tidbits
I have loved your site for its useful and funny content and simple design!
From Jordan Beam, 2006-23-Mar, re /adv770
Neat! the only Web game i can find that works on my Sony PSP
From Maria Bylund, 2006-11-Mar, re /tidbits
Now I will live longer thanks to the harty laughs i got. I will defenitly go back to this site!
From Phyllis, 2006-10-Jan, re /adv770
I was on the "Home of the Underdog" site looking at Adventure games. I couldn't believe it when I saw your remake of ADVENTURE! I played this during breaks in the late 70's off the main frame computers at Security Pacific National Bank. This goes WAAAAAY back. This is the game that inspired Ken and Roberta Williams to start their computer gaming Sierra Online business. Thanks! I'm looking forward to playing.
From Lisa, 2005-15-Dec, re /polemics/Buddha.html
About the below phrase... in my experience as a Zen practitioner, this has become a very important teaching. There is deep wisdom here. When one has an initial insight, the whole world that we thought we knew becomes new- it is nothing like we thought it was- and this can be deeply frightening. Mountains are no longer mountains. This is more literal than I ever imagined, as many of these sayings seem to be as I deepen my practice. This "phase" of practice (if we can say that there are phases) can last for many years, or so I am told by my teachers. It is a plateau of development, of the gradual work of cleaning up our karma and learning to see with new eyes. Lately I have been afraid of this practice, a ball of doubt and fear, like I'm on a train that just went past my stop- "can't I get off now?" But there is the hard work to do now. Maybe someday I can say, yet again, that mountains are mountains, that rivers are rivers. "Before I studied Zen for thirty years, I saw mountains as mountains, and waters as waters. When I arrived at a more intimate knowledge, I came to the point where I saw that mountains are not mountains and waters are not waters. But now that I have got to its very substance I am at rest. For it's just that I see mountains once again as mountains and waters once again as waters." So don't seek in the above quotation any deep "wisdom". The Master was mocking himself, and through himself all those of us who would seek a meaning to his words deeper than the words actually warrant. In that way and that way alone do his words embody a true wisdom.
From Annie Ford, 2004-30-Nov, re /tidbits/pronunciation.html
Hi - I was looking for the English pronunciation poem and just typed 'dearest creature in creation' into Google - and found your website! - I studied English at College in Cologne, Germany and I had to learn this poem by heart and learn all the words in it and how to spell and pronounce them all properly during my first week at college - quite a challenge! Anyway, keep up the good work with your website. Annie Ford
From Gemma, 2004-26-Aug, re /tidbits/pronunciation.html
It all started with the poem "The Chaos". Proceeded from there to the humour (techie and non-techie) items. Great. More!!!!
From ExpatEgghead, 2004-20-Apr, re /adv660
I am so glad r.g.i-f pointed me here. This has brought back wonderful memories and I'm glad you're keeping up the good work. Thank you. p.s. in 600 version, where is the food? I'm dying to know how to deal with the bear.
[MLA: Search and ye shall find!]
From Dan Piponi, 2004-25-Mar, re /adv770
Hiya Mike! Just doing a web search on Colossal Cave. I've been on a bit of a text adventure binge lately - buying up a good few of the old Infocom games on Ebay. If I ever finish Zork 1 I'll go back to the original Colossal Cave in earnest. I still don't fully understand the relationship between Zork and Colossal Cave. Hope you and the family are keeping well, Dan
From Sahil, 2004-02-Jan, re /tidbits
Awesome jokes. Did a search "internet Humour" and I am feeling lucky, and voila your site turns up....
From David Lemon, 2003-29-Dec, re /downloads.html
Mike, I really appreciate all your hard work, It is really appreciated by a few of us old gamer die hards. I hope your spark helps restart an old flame, keep up the excellance.