TI-99/4A and Geneve 9640 Historian
Bill Gaskill has remained at the forefront of many TI99ers' eyes and minds for his many contributions as a zealous chronicler of TI history, as a prolific programmer, as a fair and unbiased reviewer and as a data base guru.
He wrote many fine and extensive programs such as Card File, Check+, Mailing List Manager, NotePad 40, Personal Auditor Home Accounting System, and MICROpendium Index II. Many of these programs were aimed at helping all TIers make better use of their TI/99-4A Home Computer.
Among the many accomplishments wasThe TI-Base User newsletter, the only formal support and tutorial for TI-Base by Dennis Faherty. He also authored a number of "programs" for TI-Base, including Checkbook Manager for TI-Base, Membership Manager and Newsletter Exchange. The latter two primarily for use by TI99 User Groups.
The thing that Bill will be most remembered for is his documenting the history of the TI-99/4A and Geneve 9640 computers. It is doubtful that anyone, including those at Texas Instruments, would know as much about the TI-99/4A and Geneve 9640 computers as Bill Gaskill. He is a “walking, talking encyclopedia” of TI99er history.
At the TI Fest West 98 – Lubbock, Bill was referred to as the "De Facto TI-99/4A and Geneve 9640 Historian.” It was at this event that the one keynote addresses was given by Bill. The other was by Lee Kitchens. It was at this event that Bill presented to the TI99 World his TI 99 Trivia Quiz.
Part of Bill's legacy is seen in two TI99 Timelines he has written. His original TI99 Timeline is now part of the TI99ers On-Line User Group and can be found at http://timeline.ti99ers.org while his second Timeline, called Timeline 99, can be found at http://www.99er.net/timeline/on the 99er.net web site.
Bill also did much writing for the MICROpendium magazine, mainly reviewing products for the TI-99/4A and Geneve 9640 computers. Bill was a "straight shooter" when it came to the reviews. He called them like he saw them. He was not going to sugarcoat a review if it didn't deserve it. Bill therefore gained great respect and admiration for his integrity and honesty.
One of Bill Gaskill’s most lasting contributions to the TI World is his book Collecting Cartridges. This book was a tour de force in collecting cartridges for the TI - many collectors were able to say, yes, I have that title, but Bill proved, that didn’t mean your collection was completed. Bill examined all known cartridges for the TI by the following criteria:
- Foreign and domestic releases;
- Original packaging;
- Cartridge styles, designs, font types and colors;
- Instruction manuals and documentation;
- Program version or program content.
In this guide Bill surprised many by demonstrating many cartridges that collectors were totally unaware of. There is no way to estimate the time, money and effort that went in to purchasing these cartridges and categorizing them. Over the years, Bill has spent literally thousands of hours and dollars in the pursuit of documenting the TI-99/4A and Geneve 9640 computers, their software, components and the people in the TI99 community. At no time, other than for his commercial efforts, did he receive any financial assistance from anyone. Bill went out of his way to preserve TI99er history and to share it with the community.
Bill belonged to the Western Colorado 99ers User Group, the SouthWest 99ers User Group and several other user groups. Currently he is employed by Motorola doing support for their police communications section.
Bill giving his Keynote Speech at
Fest West 98 - Lubbock,
Click below to view a video of Bill Gaskill giving his Keynote Address and Seminar at Fest West '98 - Lubbock in February, 1998 (Courtesy of Bruce Maret of Video 99. (Note that Part 1 is of Lee Kitchens and can be found under his Biography):
- Part 2 - Low Quality (7.5 MB - About 28 minutes)
- Part 2 - Medium Quality (96.2 MB - About 28 minutes)
- Part 3 - Low Quality (21.1 MB - About 40 minutes)
- Part 3 - Medium Quality (307.4 MB - About 40 minutes)
- Part 4 - Low Quality (23.0 MB - About 40 minutes)
- Part 4 - Medium Quality (204.5 MB - About 40 minutes)
Inducted into the TI99ers Hall of Fame on August 11, 2004