Latest updates

Video of my /dev/world keynote about Mac gaming history

Friday, 18 January 2019

I hope you're all having a good start to 2019. Some of you may remember I mentioned a while ago that I was invited to give a keynote address sharing stories, insights, and lessons from my book at the /dev/world/2018 app developers conference.

You can now watch a video (slides+audio) of said talk on YouTube at 

Fun fact: on Monday we'll be passing 1000…

Return of the Obra Dinn + an upcoming PAX Australia talk

Friday, 19 October 2018

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Just a quick update this time to let you know about a talk I'm giving next week and a cool new game inspired by the Mac games of old.

PAX Australia talk

First, the talk: I'll be sharing a selection of stories and insights from the golden age of Mac gaming at PAX Australia on Sunday October 28 at 12pm. Details here. If you saw my keynote at /dev/world/2018 in August, expect something in a…

My next book: introducing Shareware Heroes: Independent Games at the Dawn of the Internet

Wednesday, 29 August 2018

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Hi all,

Exciting news! We've just launched the Unbound project for my next book, Shareware Heroes: Independent Games at the Dawn of the Internet. Here's a link to the campaign page, which has the pitch video, an excerpt from the first chapter, and a summary:

The short version is that it's about how the shareware marketing and business model subverted…

Upcoming talk (June 26 in Melbourne) & livestream (June 27 on w/Robyn Miller)

Friday, 15 June 2018

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Hi all,

Just wanted to let everyone know about a couple of events related to the book happening next week.

First, I'm giving a talk at the next iMug meeting in the Melbourne CBD. (iMug is short for Internet Macintosh User Group; it's apparently one of a few Mac user groups that are still active in Australia.)

Entry is free and all are welcome, so if you're a local or you're in town that evening…

I'm doing a 1980s Mac games livestream soon

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

I wanted to do this to celebrate the main trade launch last month but didn't have time, so instead I'm doing a livestream to coincide with the April 15 Australian release date for my book. It's going to be focused on games from the 1980s. I'll be talking about some of my personal favourites from the era and showing off a few gems that I didn't discover until I started researching the book, as well…

Official public launch March 22; here's how you can help

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

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It's now time for us to enter the next phase: public launch. On March 22, The Secret History of Mac Gaming trade hardbacks will be officially available in the UK and online. This is how they look on the outside:

You've probably noticed the lack of blue page edges. The other differences are a lower-quality paper stock and binding, and also a slightly yellower cover. Oh, and the Macintosh screen…

Rocket Jump and other games history books on Unbound

Friday, 23 February 2018

(For any people just now discovering this book, the special backer-only hardback edition is sold out BUT the trade hardback edition is not. You can pre-order that on Amazon UK and elsewhere ahead of its official March 22 release. The differences between the two are few: the trade edition drops the blue page edges, uses lower-quality paper stock and binding, and has a subtly-different finish on the…

Researching Mac gaming history part 2: Usenet

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

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(Skip to the end if you just want the latest updates on the book.)

I distinctly remember the moment it hit me, a year or so into researching this book, just how much of the history I'm trying to research and share happened before the modern Web existed. It was a frightening moment, like crap — how can I fill all these missing data points in? The Internet Archive is an incredible resource (and I…

The manuscript's nearly done, plus a list of interviews

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

I've been meaning to send out an update all month, but only just now found a spare moment to do it. Here's where we're at:

That final writing sprint I talked about last time has turned into an exhausting middle-distance run. We're not at the finish line yet, but we're close. I have 75,000 words done, or 80-85% of my portion of the book (Craig gets about 10k for his chapters). I am on track to be…

Progress report: entering the final writing sprint

Monday, 12 September 2016

Hey folks,

I thought it was about time I posted an update to let you know how everything's going.

I've been chipping away at writing, researching, and last-minute interviews for the past month or so. Just had a few days holiday in Uluru late last week, and now have entered a two-week sprint to try to finish the manuscript. At the moment I have four chapters finished, two of which will be overhauled…

Stretch goal: bonus chapter

Monday, 8 August 2016

Thank you everybody once again for your help getting us this far. It's amazing to me that we're at 118% funded.

I hope I can call on your support now with our stretch goal. I've thought things over and discussed it with Unbound, and we've decided that if the campaign reaches 150% funded we will add an extra chapter to the book.

I have two possible candidates for this bonus chapter, and if we…

New reward levels...and WE MADE IT!

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Lo res slumberland line art

We have a new reward available — an art print by John Calhoun. Specifically, it's a line drawing he did as the basis for the Glider Pro title screen. Here's what he had to say about it:

"At that time, I would draw the artwork with pencil and paper (in this case a large 16” x 20” or so art pad). Then I would ink it in, then scan it B&W. This is the scan. Using the Studio-8 paint program I would…

Make or break time: we need a big push

Monday, 18 July 2016

Hey folks. Sorry it's been a while since the last update. I've had my head down working on the book — trying to get through the last of the interviews and to write more of the thing.

I'm sure many of you will be pleased to know that I've added another early Bungie person (Doug Zartman) to the ranks of developers interviewed. Hoping to add a couple more before I write that chapter, but I think there…

Mark your calendar: Escape Velocity livestream with Matt Burch June 23rd 8pm Pacific

Friday, 17 June 2016

I'll be playing Ambrosia Software classic Escape Velocity with its creator Matt Burch live on next week, on Thursday the 23rd of June at 8pm Pacific. That's 11pm for US east coasters, 1pm Friday here in Melbourne, and 4am in the UK (sorry). If you can't make it, you'll be able to watch a replay afterwards. But if you can then you'll be able to ask questions in the chat for us to answer …

Progress Report: Writing, interviewing, and 45% funded after 50 of 90 days

Thursday, 16 June 2016

Harry the handsome executive original press release

I've been sick this week, which has unfortunately slowed our momentum, but we're still looking good at 45% after 50 days (into a 90-day campaign). Hopefully we can get this moving again next week and push past the halfway-funded mark. 

I wanted to take a moment to update you all on my progress with the actual book as well. I have three chapters that are finished and basically ready to go. I recently…

Audio documentary on how brothers Rand and Robyn Miller built The Manhole

Friday, 27 May 2016

Hey folks, got a couple of things I've made related to the book.

First, please listen to and share my storytelling/documentary-style podcast story on the brothers Rand and Robyn Miller — who went on to create Myst. The story is about The Manhole, and more generally how they started making games, and it draws on portions of the interviews I conducted with those two for the book. I think you'll all…

28% funded in one-sixth of the campaign; now to push for 35% in our third week

Thursday, 12 May 2016

One-sixth of the way into the campaign, we're 28% funded. This is fantastic, and I want to thank you all for your support so far (it's really meant a lot to me!), but things are starting to slow down. So please continue bugging people to pledge.

Let's aim to hit 35% by this time next week.

For those of you who don't follow me on Twitter, I shared a new tidbit that came from a recent interview…

Art print preview & early press coverage

Monday, 2 May 2016

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Thank you everybody for your support so far. As I write this we're a little shy of 21% funded at six days in, so it's off to a fantastic start.

I have a low-resolution version of Steve Tze's art print to share with you. I hope this'll entice a few of you to repledge/increase your pledge (I'm not actually sure how that process works, so check with Unbound support if you need help). You may share…

Welcome! Allow me to briefly introduce myself

Wednesday, 27 April 2016


Day one done and we've already reached 4% of the funding goal. That's a good start, but we have a long way to go — probably a little more than another 500 pledges. I want to offer my thanks to all of you for diving in right at the beginning; I know these early stages are the most important, but also the hardest to gather support. So I appreciate it very much.

Please keep sharing the campaign on…

Publication date: Spring 2018
162% funded
1476 backers