GORF (The Great Oz Retro-Fest or Gathering of Retro-Fanatics) is a multi-day event celebrating the enduring resilience of the personal computing platforms of the 1970s, 80s and 90s including the Apple ][, Commodore 64, Atari, Sinclair and other 8- and 16-bit computer lines, as well as computerised entertainment hardware from that era such as video-game consoles and arcade cabinets.
While GORF will feature two keynote sessions, one given by the designer of the Australian-made Microbee computer, Owen Hill, and the other by retro-technology researcher, historian and academic Dr. Melanie Swalwell, talks at GORF are generally given by attendees on topics such as hardware, software, history, emulation, coding, new products and more. The multi-day format assures that those who wish to present will have an opportunity to do so (and everyone is encouraged to!)
Modelled on the US KansasFest and Australian OzKFest events, GORF is an immersive experience where attendees stay at the venue, hacking and talking into the wee hours with other participants, or sleeping if that is preferred. GORF 2019 is going to be held at Urban Camp, Royal Park, Melbourne, a facility that has camp-style accomodation.
While attendees can also find their own accomodation elsewhere (there is a motel nearby), participants in other similar events have found staying at the venue a rewarding experience, because and in spite of its communal nature.
The full event pass cost (including meals and bunk accomodation) is $360. If you sleep off-site it’s $200, and daypasses are available for Thursday and Friday ($60 each) and Saturday ($40). Meals are included in all passes (except for dinner on Saturday night).
GORF is an initiative of Teaching Electronics and Computing History (TECH) Inc., a Victorian not-for-profit association that also publishes Paleotronic Magazine.