Its Still Not Magic

Back in the ancient days, when the Apple lie was a powerful computer, when 128K was more memory than you would ever use, and when programmers believed that writing compact, efficient code was a thing of honor, I had a T-shirt that said, "I Got the Babel Fish." What this meant was that I had solved one of the most fiendishly clever puzzles in one of the most entertaining computer games ever created: Infocom's version of Douglas Adams' Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

Infocom games are text games, and they were among the first that were available for personal computers. You interacted with the game by typing in commands such as, "Go north," or "Throw the ax at the dwarf." What set the Infocom games apart were the depth of the descriptions, the remarkable humor which permeated each game, and the absolutely mind-numbing puzzles. These games are probably the finest exercises in creative problem solving which have ever been devised.

Activision (which now owns Infocom) has released 30 of the classic text adventures on one CDROM. Included are all the Zork games, the Enchanter/Sorcerer/Spellbreaker trilogy, and the riotous and vaguely vulgar Leather Goddesses of Phobos. This is an incredible bargain, and playing these games on a fast machine is an absolute delight. Games today may be flashier, but there are none which are finer than these "relics" from the early days of personal computing.

Two notes: If you're interested in Interactive Fiction, check out the web site at http://www.undergrad.math.uwaterloo.ca/~svanegmo/if/if-archive.html. Also, the only downside to the Activision disc is that they were unable to include The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. But it's probably just as well; the puzzles are so tough they would only break your heart.

Details

Harkey on Video by David Harkey [NOTE: I HAVE MISPLACED THE INFO ON THIS. HARKEY'S PHONE NUMBER IS 541-484-6286]

Off the Cuff by Gregory Wilson. $30 postpaid. From The Secret Source, 64 Seafare, Laguna Niguel, CA 92677

The Dungeon Video and Superstarsign by Anthony Owen. Video - 30 pounds for NTSC, 25 pounds for PAL. Superstarsign - 3 pounds. From Dynamic FX Limited, Unit 6, Hertfordshire Business Centre, Alexander Road, London Colney, Hertfordshire, AL2 1JG, England

Hocus Poker by David Solomon. $15 postpaid. From David Solomon, 848 Greenbay Road, Highland Park, IL 60035

Candle Caps by Marcelo Contento. $3.50 for a bag of five caps. For individual bags contact your local dealer. For larger orders contact Marcelo Contento Productions, P.O. Box 396, Watertown, MA 02272-0396

The Book of Imagination from Kymystical Magic. $20. From Kymystical Magic, 21 Card Road, Sussex, NJ 07461

Using Magic to Prevent Drug Abuse by Stan Davis. 8.5 x 11 spiral bound. 29 single sided pages. $10 plus $2 p&h. From Stan Davis, P.O. Box 67, Wayne, ME 04284

Covert Operations by Tom Frame. 8.5 x 11 side stapled. 42 pages. $15 plus $2 p&h. From Tom Frame, 527A 21st Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94121

The Abracadabra Kid by Sid Fleischman. 6 x 9 hardbound with glossy dustjacket. 197 pages. $16.00. From Greenwillow Books. Available at most bookstores.

Classic Text Adventure Masterpieces of Infocom. CDROM for IBM or Macintosh. $25. From Activision. Available at most software stores.

Fundamentals of Magick

Fundamentals of Magick

Magick is the art and practice of moving natural energies to effect needed or wanted change. Magick is natural, there is absolutely nothing supernatural about it. What is taught here are various techniques of magick for beginners. Magick is natural and simple and the techniques to develop abilities should be simple and natural as well. What is taught on this site is not only the basics of magick, but the basics of many things.

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