Streaming Video On An Apple IIc

Some of the projects we feature solve a problem. Others just demonstrate that they can be done. We’re guessing that it’s the latter that motivated [Joshua Bell] to write a VNC client for an Apple IIc. To fully appreciate how insane this is, have a look at the video below the break.

There’s more than one thing amazing about this hack. Somehow, [Joshua]’s VNC program runs entirely in the memory of an Apple IIc, as he demonstrates at the beginning of the video by downloading all of the code into the Apple over a serial cable. After the initial bootstrap, he runs the code and you see (in full four-color splendour!) a low-res Windows XP appear on the IIc.

2440964467_decb0daf10_oWhat’s more incredible, but is unfortunately not demonstrated in the video, is that he appears to have not just mirrored the PC’s screen on the Apple, but has actually managed to get a one-frame-per-second bi-directional VNC working at 115,200 baud. In this snapshot from his flickr gallery, he appears to be playing Karateka on the IIc and watching it on his laptop.

If you’ve got a IIc kicking around, and you want to show it yet more new tricks, don’t neglect this browser written for the Apple IIc. Or if you’ve only got an Apple IIc+ and you’re totally ticked off that the beep is different from that of the IIc, you can always go on an epic reverse-engineering quest to “repair” it.


Thanks to [Keith O] for sending in this oldier-but-goodie.

6 thoughts on “Streaming Video On An Apple IIc

  1. That’s an oldie but goldie alright — since this project was last shown there have been many advances in double-hires image conversion that result in much cleaner results. One such example is bmp2dhr from Bill Buckels ( and another is the outlaw editor which is being used to make Lawless Legends and also a quick just-for-fun homage to another game (fallout ’84) –>

  2. This brings back so many memories. Clunky user interfaces. Horribly slow, low-resolution graphics. Painfully slow connections. Companies sinking millions into virtual real estate. Second Life, I wish I could say it was fun while it lasted, but actually it really wasn’t.

    1. Second Life was like a 3d version of Geocities. Everyone just cloned everyone else’s terrible objects to populate their lots, and added some background music. Just because you CAN make something doesn’t mean you should : )

      Plus when you ended up in the sandbox lots, your client invariably crashed because someone thought it’d be fun to forkbomb the lot with flying dongs.

Leave a Reply

Please be kind and respectful to help make the comments section excellent. (Comment Policy)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.