1. I've added the z80 tag.
  2. I remember playing Popeye on the arcade machine in a small coffee bar in my home village in the mid 80s. The same place also had a Moon Patrol machine.
  3. Author here. Another tag that could be applied to this item is "z80".

    The TI-83+ and TI-84+ may be the cheapest way to get into Z80 assembly language programming these days. They go for about $20-30 on eBay, sometime cheaper locally. The programming environment has some non-trivial TI-OS layer that you have to punch through, and the dev tools are a bit clunky, but once you get past that, your inner Z80 programming can take over: read the keyboard, write characters to the LCD screen, write pixels to the screen, and so on. The TI 83 Plus SDK provides access to various low-level OS functions.

    The main discussion about the calculator features of the RPN83P app is happening on the MoHPC site: https://www.hpmuseum.org/forum/thread-20867.html

  4. For a lot of apps today, we don't program down on the metal. I wonder how you would achieve this and pass a code review. John Feagans read the assembly code and didn't notice.I guess it would have to be amongst the oceans of C or Javascript
  5. I really like Pascal as a language and Turbo Pascal in particular was an amazing piece of work. It was uncommonly user friendly for such a powerful piece of software running on the limited hardware of the time. The context sensitive help was terrific. Also amazingly fast, especially with self contained units. Visual Studio on a modern multicore multiGHz PC makes me wait longer for a build than Turbo Pascal did on my 486 or in some cases even my earlier 386.
  6. I have both a STacy and a Mac Portable, and they're not even in the same class. The Portable has a fabulous screen and a wonderful full-stroke keyboard, and feels solid and professional. The STacy feels cheap and thrown together. The Portable can be relatively easily worked on, the degenerating plastics notwithstanding; the STacy hides screws and flexed dangerously even when it was new.

    But the STacy is an ST, and it's the only one I've got.

  7. Is there some way to extract the font data for use with other systems?
  8. also, the board costs 30€, or 55€(!!) with a Pi Pico W included. Considering the Pico W sells for around 7€ almost everywhere, the fully populated board sounds a bit like a rip-off...

    I an considering getting one for my 520ST (I have a handfull of Pico W's lying around), but I'm not sure if it would be better to wait a bit for the next HW revision (if there is one)... v0.0.1 screams "early-adopter" a bit too loud for my tastes ;)

    But I kinda like the idea of the floppy downloader that can directly grab floppy files from an S3 bucket somewhere.

  9. If you are a fan of RPN, you might appreciate my ongoing RPN83P app for TI-83+ and TI-84+: https://github.com/bxparks/rpn83p

    Discussions at MoHPC: https://www.hpmuseum.org/forum/thread-20867.html

  10. Dave Pl has a video on this which talks about easter eggs in Lunar Lander and make amongst other things


  11. Yes. This is the one I was thinking about. Cool that the article has the link to the Apple one too. very nice.
  12. From the excellent Commodore books by Brian Bagnall:

    While the engineers were showing off the new PET models, John Feagans noticed Bill Gates step up to one of the demo computers. “He was looking over his shoulder,” recalls Seiler.

    “Gates walked up to our machine and played around with it.” What Feagans saw amazed him. Gates typed a simple command and the screen displayed the word MICROSOFT.

    “If you put WAIT 6502 and then a number, it would print MICROSOFT that many times,” says Seiler. Gates cleared the screen and walked away, unaware Feagans had observed his deed.

    Feagans soon realized Gates had snuck an Easter egg into Commodore BASIC. “There was another guy who did the first work on BASIC but Gates was working on it near the end. That’s how small the company was,” says Seiler.

    Gates used the hidden code to fingerprint this particular version of BASIC. “He put in something in the PET because he was real suspicious of people like me stealing his BASIC on paper tape,” says Seiler. If someone attempted to incorporate BASIC into a machine using Gates’ code, it would be easy to check if the code originated with Micro-Soft.

    Feagans felt perturbed because he had previously scanned through the code searching for hidden messages and found no discernable words. “It wasn’t in ASCII where you could see it. Gates had fiddled with a couple of bits with the ASCII character set, so it didn’t show up when you just looked at a raw binary dump,” says Seiler.

    Feagans vowed to hunt down the hidden message and remove it from Commodore’s code. “He was just so perturbed that he had put that in there,” says Seiler. “Feagans is kind of a perfectionist like that.”

  13. BASIC easter egg, probably by Gates himself: https://www.pagetable.com/?p=43
  14. There are tons of demonstration videos on youtube and also the Computer History Museum has some which still work (not sure whether they are a permanent exhibit). Personally I'm more interested in the software they recently published (see e.g. https://computerhistory.org/press-releases/xerox-alto/)
  15. TIL, something really cool. I still use my 12c from early 80s
  16. This project has been years in development.

    I am on mobile, but the development logs on Atariage.com are a great read.

  17. It's also used in millions of TI-83+ and TI-84+ calculators.
  18. These kinds of hidden codes are magical. I know there is one in Commodore BASIC.and I’m pretty sure Apple had one too
  19. Alas I have never seen one in the flesh. I only read about it from Butler Lampsons interview in “Programmers at Work”
  20. I worked at Xerox and got a chance to actually see an Alto up close, although it was not in operating condition. When I started in the mid-90s GlobalView, the successor to the OS that ran on the Star (which was a successor of the Alto), had been ported to run on Sun workstations and was still in use inside the company. They also ported it to run on top of Windows but performance was horrible and people only used it if they had to.
  21. I always think of the z80 as a CP/M processor but alway forget how many coin op games and embedded systems used it
  22. The main thing is, ibrowse doesn’t support HTML5 or CSS. So, anything in xhtml and html4 are good to go, but nothing newer.
  23. Joyce was an amazing language; it's a concurrent Pascal version which uses (synchronous) communication channels like CSP (instead of monitors as in Brinch Hansen's earlier languages), and it supported indirect naming of channels and recursive processes even before Newsqueak, which eighteen years later became Go.
  24. Interesting article.

    > that it was the Star that introduced the desktop metaphor. The Alto had no "desktop", and indeed, almost no elements of the familiar GUI we all know today.

    Is this true? There was e.g. Smalltalk which had a desktop before the Star was there, or there was the Cedar system on the Dorado, which also had a desktop, isn't it?

    > the design of Smalltalk influenced almost every language that came after it, from Javascript to Python.

    I think that's a bit too optimistic. C++ and Java (and in consequence also C#) are descendants of Simula 67, not Smalltalk. Actually even Smalltalk itself starting from 1976 was closer to Simula 67 than the earlier Smalltalk versions, in that there was inheritance and virtual method dispatch. Van Rossum describes in a blog post that he was only vaguely aware of Smalltalk when he developed Python; his major inspirations were C++, CLU, Modula-3 and Lisp. But anyway the article is about the Alto which was a magnificent achievement.

  25. TIL, MAME has a debugger.
  26. I like this kit. Too bad the seller is on a break.
  27. As a single pass compiler I remember how fast it was. Turbo Pascal would compile and stop on the first error. Simple. Other pascal compilers of the era would keep going trying to fix missing ; and often leading to error messages that were bizarre - especially to students.

    I’d do my school assignments in turbo pascal and then upload and port to the Data General mini Pascal compiler. Was just 10000 times faster to do as long as I didn’t use anything PC specific I was gold

  28. Tl;dr

    - Emulate both 64Kbyte and 128Kbyte ROMs by simply loading the binary files from a microSD card or via a Wi-Fi connection.

    - Interact with the cartridge bus in real-time for data reading and writing, which allows for seamless emulation of devices such as floppy disks, hard disks , real-time clocks, keyboards, mouse devices, and more.

    - Dive into a realm of possibilities, limited only by your creativity. Thanks to its open architecture and the open-source code, SidecarT can evolve to meet any challenge you envision.

  29. Turns out, the Kansas City Standard even uses Two Stop Bits - so very apt for this site :)
  30. More