Online / 5 & 6 February 2022


FrogFind and 68k News

Building Modern Web Portals for Vintage Machines

This talk will cover the creation of two web portals, which use open source libraries to make much of the modern web accessible to vintage machines and old web browsers. By using the Readability library, along with some haphazard PHP, I was able to take modern sites down to text content and HTML 1.1 on the server side. serves as a web portal for limited browsers, such as old versions of Mosiac, or even text browsers like Contiki's on an Apple ][, to make much of the web's content accessible to them in a perfectly readable way.

It is often said that the modern internet has left vintage computers behind. However, it is not the internet - it is the complexity of content. One way of bringing vintage machines to the modern web is through upgrades and accelerators. This creates a moving target of machines that will still age-out of sufficient upgrade-ability as the web continues to evolve. Another option is to deconstruct the modern web to make it accessible to vintage computers.

Using an open source library called Readability and some haphazard PHP, I've built two web portals: and These sites allow vintage machine to view many websites as text-only, by stripping out complicated HTML and scripts and delivering HTML 1.1 content to old browsers, with images optional.

This talk will cover the idea behind these portals, their use, and just how usable and pleasant a vintage machine can become for daily internet content consumption without the distractions of the modern web.


Photo of Sean Malseed Sean Malseed