Forum Rules and Etiquette

Our mission ...

This forum is part of our mission to promote the preservation of vintage computers through education and outreach. (In real life we also run events and have a museum.) We encourage you to join us, participate, share your knowledge, and enjoy.

This forum has been around in this format for over 15 years. These rules and guidelines help us maintain a healthy and active community, and we moderate the forum to keep things on track. Please familiarize yourself with these rules and guidelines.

Rule 1: Remain civil and respectful

There are several hundred people who actively participate here. People come from all different backgrounds and will have different ways of seeing things. You will not agree with everything you read here. Back-and-forth discussions are fine but do not cross the line into rude or disrespectful behavior.

Conduct yourself as you would at any other place where people come together in person to discuss their hobby. If you wouldn't say something to somebody in person, then you probably should not be writing it here.

This should be obvious but, just in case: profanity, threats, slurs against any group (sexual, racial, gender, etc.) will not be tolerated.

Rule 2: Stay close to the original topic being discussed
  • If you are starting a new thread choose a reasonable sub-forum to start your thread. (If you choose incorrectly don't worry, we can fix that.)
  • If you are responding to a thread, stay on topic - the original poster was trying to achieve something. You can always start a new thread instead of potentially "hijacking" an existing thread.

Rule 3: Contribute something meaningful

To put things in engineering terms, we value a high signal to noise ratio. Coming here should not be a waste of time.
  • This is not a chat room. If you are taking less than 30 seconds to make a post then you are probably doing something wrong. A post should be on topic, clear, and contribute something meaningful to the discussion. If people read your posts and feel that their time as been wasted, they will stop reading your posts. Worse yet, they will stop visiting and we'll lose their experience and contributions.
  • Do not bump threads.
  • Do not "necro-post" unless you are following up to a specific person on a specific thread. And even then, that person may have moved on. Just start a new thread for your related topic.
  • Use the Private Message system for posts that are targeted at a specific person.

Rule 4: "PM Sent!" messages (or, how to use the Private Message system)

This forum has a private message feature that we want people to use for messages that are not of general interest to other members.

In short, if you are going to reply to a thread and that reply is targeted to a specific individual and not of interest to anybody else (either now or in the future) then send a private message instead.

Here are some obvious examples of when you should not reply to a thread and use the PM system instead:
  • "PM Sent!": Do not tell the rest of us that you sent a PM ... the forum software will tell the other person that they have a PM waiting.
  • "How much is shipping to ....": This is a very specific and directed question that is not of interest to anybody else.

Why do we have this policy? Sending a "PM Sent!" type message basically wastes everybody else's time by making them having to scroll past a post in a thread that looks to be updated, when the update is not meaningful. And the person you are sending the PM to will be notified by the forum software that they have a message waiting for them. Look up at the top near the right edge where it says 'Notifications' ... if you have a PM waiting, it will tell you there.

Rule 5: Copyright and other legal issues

We are here to discuss vintage computing, so discussing software, books, and other intellectual property that is on-topic is fine. We don't want people using these forums to discuss or enable copyright violations or other things that are against the law; whether you agree with the law or not is irrelevant. Do not use our resources for something that is legally or morally questionable.

Our discussions here generally fall under "fair use." Telling people how to pirate a software title is an example of something that is not allowable here.

Reporting problematic posts

If you see spam, a wildly off-topic post, or something abusive or illegal please report the thread by clicking on the "Report Post" icon. (It looks like an exclamation point in a triangle and it is available under every post.) This send a notification to all of the moderators, so somebody will see it and deal with it.

If you are unsure you may consider sending a private message to a moderator instead.

New user moderation

New users are directly moderated so that we can weed spammers out early. This means that for your first 10 posts you will have some delay before they are seen. We understand this can be disruptive to the flow of conversation and we try to keep up with our new user moderation duties to avoid undue inconvenience. Please do not make duplicate posts, extra posts to bump your post count, or ask the moderators to expedite this process; 10 moderated posts will go by quickly.

New users also have a smaller personal message inbox limit and are rate limited when sending PMs to other users.

Other suggestions
  • Use Google, books, or other definitive sources. There is a lot of information out there.
  • Don't make people guess at what you are trying to say; we are not mind readers. Be clear and concise.
  • Spelling and grammar are not rated, but they do make a post easier to read.
See more
See less

crossing finger's

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    crossing finger's

    I have a guy local to me that might sell me a altair 8800b that he has owned since new. Right now he is fishing for how much it is worth thou

    Man, That would be awsome if you got it.

    How did you find out about the altair? Was it in a news paper or did you already know the guy? Have you seen a picture (or in person) the computer?

    Cant breath, too many, old, compeeeewwwwddddderrrrssss


      If he's looking for how much it's worth, your probably not going to get it withought loosing an arm and a leg. I if were you, i would of pressured the guy, told him it was a old peace of junk, and that i like collecting that type of stuff. I would also quickly offer him 5 dollars, and say take it or leave it, you will never get anything more from it. If he is your friend however, then i wouldn't be so agressive.
      i am CANADIAN.....EH
      GO OILERS!!!!!


        ^ dude, remind me to never run a booth at a flea market near you .

        Yeah i wouldn't do it like that when dealing with a friend, just a flea market vendor with a Lisa or a top loader NES.


          I get the impression that jizcp doesn't make very many 'good deals', but if his technique works, it only takes one such deal to make it all worth while (I mean, who wouldn't love to get five-dollar Altair?)...

          Teach your children how to think, not what, and hold 'em close, not tight.

          Please visit the Vintage-Computer Wiki. Contributers welcome.


            Originally posted by Terry Yager
            (I mean, who wouldn't love to get five-dollar Altair?)
            I don't know about y'all, but I just wouldn't feel right. . .
            The Vintage Computer and Gaming Marketplace
            The Vintage Computer


              I second that motion. As a human being dealing with other human beings, it's not worth screwing somebody whether they know they are being screwed or not.

              For GreenMeanie - I would make a fair offer, and back it up with data. If the owner wants to make a killing on the machine, you are not going to get it anyway. If the owner wants a fair price and a good time, you'll be right where you need to be.


                Yes, this is a tough issue, for people with lots of money, and for poorer people it becomes a great issue, because we cannot spend the true value, yet we still want the item, but for people with the money, they tend to want to make it fair for the seller. BUT, I will say this, I dont think anyone here would turn down a $5 altair sitting on a table at a yard sale.
                It depends on the buyer's position I guess, sellers should always do research before selling an item however. Ignorance or laziness cannot become an excuse for people to expect someone to offer more for an item.
                Also, in a situation where I was dealing with just one item, not a yard sale or such, I might offer more than asked, but if it were a yard sale or such, I would definitly grab that baby, pay and run.
                My Collection.

                IBM 5150, TI-PPC, Apple IIe, Compaq Portable I Plus, Compaq Portable II, Compaq Portable III, Osborne Executive, IBM Model 25, Tandy 1400LT, Powerbook 140, IBM 5140, KayPro IV, Commodore VIC-20, Zenith Z-Station GT, DGI 86BN3, Commodore CBM 8032, Commodore SX-64, Zenith Super Sport 184, Macintosh 5300\100LC, Commodore 64, Wang Terminal.
                My Computer Museum


                  I do similar almost every day, at on-line auctions. Sure, I'll bid $5.00 on something I know is worth $100.00, and once in a while it even works. Sometimes I feel bad for the seller, but I figger that if I hadn't won it for five bucks, someone else might've got it for four-fifty.
                  When someone asks my advice, I try to give a fair and honest appraisal, even when it's something I'm interested in buying for myself.

                  Teach your children how to think, not what, and hold 'em close, not tight.

                  Please visit the Vintage-Computer Wiki. Contributers welcome.


                    What Terry said.

                    If someone offers me something at a named price I'll take it or leave it based on that - perhaps with some negotiation.

                    If someone asks me to appraise something I'll give them my absolute best guess as to the value of the item along with how I arrived at it. I usually do differentiate "eBay" prices from "collector" prices, but that's only informational.

                    I even go so far as to suggest venues for sale including eBay, the VCM and here.

                    So, if someone asked me what a Lisa 1 was worth I would tell them the real value even though that would easily price me out of being able to buy it.
                    The Vintage Computer and Gaming Marketplace
                    The Vintage Computer


                      In the case of Altair, it is so relatively well-known and sought after among collectors, that a half-hearted Google search will return a lot of useful pricing information. If it had been some other rare, but less heard of computer, it is probably easier to strike a great deal.

                      It also depends whether the owner wants to go onto eBay or likewise. Assuming it is someone who already isn't a member, he'd have a rating of 0, selling an Altair - if they came in a box, perhaps it is boxed too. People would be suspicious and misbid. The seller also can't be sure he won't get frauded, unless he as a new user has a clause about other new users. Add the hassle of packing, shipping and perhaps the neighbour offering to take it off his hands for a fairly moderate sum (or services - free window cleaning for a year) is a better option after all.
                      Anders Carlsson