[Blindapple] Exciting news for the Blind Apple II emulation community!
jaybird at bluegrasspals.com
Tue Aug 27 20:37:26 EDT 2013
It's finally happened, what we've all been waiting for. I didn't know
about it until a week or two ago, and I got it working this morning. I'm
talking about the MESS project emulating the Apple II systems. Not only
that, but someone decided to add Echo II emulation! Yes, you heard
right, at long last, you can get a feel for how the old systems really
worked for us blind folks back in the 80's without ever buying any Apple
Disclaimer: The file I'm about to link to includes ROM images. It is
illegal for anyone to possess these ROMs unless they own the original
hardware, in this case, an Apple IIe Enhanced and a Disk II controller
card. However, since these files are absolutely necessary for the
emulator to do anything at all, I've decided to make things easier by
providing the ROMs.
If you'd like to take this emulator for a spin, you'll need to be
running Windows. MESS runs on many platforms, but Windows was the system
I chose for this quick distribution since it's what I most often use.
Download the following file:
Unzip it somewhere. In the disks folder are a few talking .dsk images
for you to play around with. To start the emulator with one of them, do,
mess apple2ee -flop1 disks\egames.dsk
Yes, you do need to write apple2ee with two e's, since we're emulating
an Enhanced IIe. This system has an extended 80-column card, an Echo II
in slot 4, and a disk controller in slot 6. Once the program starts, you
may have to hit Enter to start the Apple. You'll notice that the Echo
speech sounds a bit fast, I noticed that too.
For the most part, things work like you'd think. F12 is the reset key,
left and right Alt seem to be open apple and closed apple. To quit, hold
down scroll lock, press Insert, and release both keys, then press
Escape. To make this work, if you're using Jaws, you'll need to
passthrough or have Jaws go to sleep or unload it. Same goes for Control
key commands in the Apple. I don't know how the arrows are emulated, so
I use the Control key equivalents, Ctrl+H for left, Ctrl+U for right,
Ctrl+J for down, and Ctrl+K for up.
I don't know of an accessible way to switch disks during a session, so
you probably don't want to use this to play Eamon. The MESS UI doesn't
seem to be accessible.
Hope you can get something out of this! I certainly have enjoyed it.
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