The Vintage Computer Library grows...

From: Sam Ismail <>
Date: Wed Feb 11 02:09:36 1998

I added another 50+ volumes to the Vintage Computer Library today. A very
ecclectic bunch of books, manuals, leaflets (no I didn't count the
leaflets). I love collecting the books because in the dry times where I
don't find much hardware they still can give that "what a find!" thrill,
especially when you find a book from the 60's (or sometimes even the
50's!) on data processing or computer science with lots of nice pictures
of old data processing gear.

However, today's quick trip to the thrift store produced a very cool piece
of hardware. I found a California Access "Bodega Bay". It's an Amiga 500
expansion chassis! First of all, Bodega Bay is a cute play on words,
since that is also the name of a northern California coastal town, perhaps
where this particular piece of hardware was manufactured. I remember last
year picking up a California Access 3.5" floppy drive with a DB-25
connector, and now I know what it went to!

The chassis is a desktop PC sized case. Inside there is a passive
backplane with several slots. There are two cards occupying two of the
slots. One is a memory board and the other is a hard disk controller. The
chassis also houses an ST-225 hard drive. The 3.5" floppy was removed
from the A500 and re-installed inside the chassis. What is very
interesting about the backplane is that it also seems to have 4 PC-style
16-bit slots. I only had an 8-bit card handy to try out but it fit
perfectly in the "8-bit" portion of the slot. I am almost sure this unit
could allow one to use IBM compatible hardware. Am I wrong about this?

The passive backplane extends into a protrusion coming out the front of
the chassis and plugs into the side expansion slot of the A500, which
connects neatly to the chassis to form one unified computer system.

Does anyone have any solid technical information on this? Unfortunately
in all the books and manuals I brought home not one was for this thing.

Sam Alternate e-mail:
Computer Historian, Programmer, Musician, Philosopher, Athlete, Writer, Jackass

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Received on Wed Feb 11 1998 - 02:09:36 GMT

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