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  1. I will be uploading the demo files to the forums in just a few minutes...
    8 points
  2. Alrighty, I think I will back out of the X8 discussion, as it's clear that I understand neither the jargon nor the details of the device. I appreciate your efforts though! I just want to use the $50 8 bit computer David talked about nearly 3 years ago.
    4 points
  3. Buildings! Also I go over a very fast subroutine that multiplies a six bit number by26 and divides by another six bit number...in 100 cycles or less.
    4 points
  4. 11 downloads

    Hope you enjoy this little intro! Best viewed on a local emulator. The web one doesn't seem to handle the audio too well. More on the audio player: Original mod by Archyx. See their other mods here: https://modarchive.org/index.php?request=view_artist_modules&query=69244 Thanks for looking.
    4 points
  5. Extremely off topic ramblings which lead to moderate hostilities, because nerds will nerd. It's what we do. There were pages of off topic discussion, which I am sure a mod would have been happy to move to its own thread if the mod had more time to do that kind of thing; No one wants to shut down dialog, but it is important to organize and guide it to some degree. Please, stay on topic in this thread. Thank ye!
    4 points
  6. Hi all I'm glad that someone undertook a great project like this. I'm following your progress, and the videos you are posting are very good and informative, thank you. I'm excited about the project and will buy CommanderX16 when its available, for sure. Keep up the good work. Sincerely Charles Thivierge
    3 points
  7. I'm pretty open about my Raspberry Pi hobby and how much I love the platform, especially for retro emulation. However, a while back I decided to see if I could use a Pi 4 as a "budget" mini-portable PC, I wanted to see if it could act as alternative to my desktop when I am not at home. So, I got the 8GB Pi 4 B and started messing around with it. One thing I knew out of the gate was I didn't want to run an SD card as my primary drive, they are simply too slow and that would be a non-starter for me, especially when I am used to the snappiness of my vastly more powerful desktop PC, and I also didn't want a flash drive sticking out of the Pi to use instead of the SD card. So, I went looking to see what was out there... That's when I ran across the Argon ONE M.2, basically a Pi 4 case that lets you use a SATA M.2 SSD on your Pi 4 via one of the USB 3 ports, but all contained in a small and very convenient case. I piked up a cheap Silicon Power 128GB M.2 SATA SSD (originally tried a 64GB drive but got the 128GB cheaper on sale), popped it in the case, and dropped the Pi OS on there and ... wow ... I really did not appreciate how fast the Pi 4 actually is, or how much the SD cards were "bottlenecking" it. After a couple months of using this setup for a multitude of daily tasks, from retro emulation, web browsing, HD video playback, Arduino, PCB design, image editing, and even using Steam Link to connect to my desktop and stream games. I can say that this Argon M.2 case is amazing! At least it is for someone like me. The nice thing is you can still use the SD card slot as a "slow" storage drive to expand your storage capacity. All in a very small form factor that you can easily take with you anywhere. The overall speed of the Pi 4 is actually quite impressive when running on that M.2 SSD over USB3, while it's obviously still a bottleneck for the SSD, it's a massive speed boost over SD or USB flash drives. So much so that it actually works very well as a daily driver. So yeah, I just wanted to share in case anyone was ever in the market for such a thing, and wanted to cram as much performance out of a Pi 4 as the possibly could. On a side note, I overclocked the Pi 4 to just a smidge over 2.0GHz, and it's stable in this case, and stays much cooler than I anticipated. Overall, I am very impressed. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08MJ3CSW7/
    3 points
  8. Version 1.0.0

    18 downloads

    This demo is made from original game assets and translating the VGM tune into YM2151 + VERA PSG. I made this demo because I think too many people forget just how great the graphics can be on the X16. I also think the FM music is vital to the 16-bit era of gaming, so this demo shows how the Commander X16 can deliver the goods if you like a 4th-gen experience.
    3 points
  9. Sonic GHZ with raster lines and music View File This demo is made from original game assets and translating the VGM tune into YM2151 + VERA PSG. I made this demo because I think too many people forget just how great the graphics can be on the X16. I also think the FM music is vital to the 16-bit era of gaming, so this demo shows how the Commander X16 can deliver the goods if you like a 4th-gen experience. Submitter ZeroByte Submitted 10/18/21 Category Demos  
    3 points
  10. The options available in your poll are strange enough that I don't feel comfortable choosing any. What I can say is this... I learned how to solder 30 years go. I was terrible at it then and I am worse at it now. I wouldn't buy anything that required soldering anything more than a couple of power leads. I don't enjoy soldering, at all. Aside from the fact that I just don't want to solder a kit anything together... I don't have a properly ventilated location to work. I don't want to troubleshoot and repair complex circuitry. I don't have the electronics tools required to troubleshoot and repair complex circuitry. I don't want to buy (or own or use) all the equipment required to solder/de-solder properly. I don't want buy (or own or use) the electronics tools required to troubleshoot and repair complex circuitry. There was a time in the distant past where I would have answered this question differently, but people and circumstances change. I already have hobbies that require more time and attention than I have available, such as using already assembled devices to program.
    3 points
  11. Asteroid Commander is up to 11kb of assembly language code and about 400kb of lookup tables, so far.
    3 points
  12. Don't know. Of course, there's going to be some sticklers who would be all "not ALL of the chips in the X16p are DIP, not ALL of the chips in the X16c are surface mount, all three boards HAVE an FPGA". Iron Internet Law number 38 is "no naming satisfies everyone".
    3 points
  13. The X8 is really a different beast than the later stages of the CX16 roadmap, so the X8 debate won't be one with the FPGA or SMT versions of the CX16. With the X8, you're talking about a computer that's really very different: it will not have a full ROM. Instead, it will have a bootstrapped RAM operating system with a very small bootstrap ROM. This is how CP/M works: there's just enough ROM (a single page, in fact) to boot the BIOS from disk. Then the BIOS boots the command processor, and you have an operating system. From what I understand, the CX8 will work similarly: the bootstrap ROM will load a BASIC+KERNAL program from SD. This means that programs can be written to occupy all 63K of system memory (There is a small carve out for I/O space) without ever actually loading the KERNAL or BASIC. This is not something the CX16 is currently capable of (unless we get RAM in one of the ROM banks.) The other difference is that VERA is accessed via a single, 256 byte page, rather than the 32 I/O registers we have now. This dramatically changes the I/O process, since you have access to a full line of text or tiles directly, rather than the indirect method the CX16 uses. And we obviously have the 512K vs 128K issue to think about. Programs written for the CX8 will have to fit no more than 128K: 64K of main memory and 64K of video memory. On the other hand, the Commander X16 roadmap includes a Surface Mount (SMT) version and an FPGA version. Both of those will have the same I/O and memory structure as the CX16E (the version currently in the works), but with smaller circuit boards and fewer chips to do the same job. While the package may be smaller, the software will be the same: the same program will run, unmodified, on all 3 of the planned Commander X16 editions. Software that directly accesses video, sound, the User port, or the IEC bus will not run unmodified on a Commander X8. That's the difference. The X8 is a different computer, and while it shares some common parts, it's as different from the CX16 as the Commodore 64 was from the Plus 4.
    3 points
  14. I even made a conceptual PCB Front for the X8 hoping it would be released. just to be clear, I did this in MSPAINT.
    3 points
  15. Im not @Scott Robison but I think one perhaps unintended side effect of the X8 is the possibility that it can be programmed to run other 8bit/6502 Machines in FPGA alongside the VERA in FPGA for Video output. Granted that would probably require "erasing" the X8 ROM and assuming the ICE40UP5k could be programmed multiple times means that the X8 platform could be the basis for a truly inexpensive 8bit AIO FPGA machine.
    3 points
  16. One more time for the people in the back row, mind your language.
    3 points
  17. In other words, you have a fundamental philosophical disagreement with this particular project, which is being pursued by people who appreciated the stable development platforms represented by the 8bit systems like the Vic20 or C64 or Atari 800 and wanted to create a new system that would offer a similar stable development platform. The ongoing element in those systems was the ongoing exploration of what is possible within the constraints of that stable development platform. As far as projects which are not stable development platforms, but are, instead, always temporary way-stations before "screwing the whole page up and throwing it into the trash" ... there really are quite a lot of those. It seems as if there will continue to be, even if the choice of building a stable development platform is not outlawed in the name of pursuing hobbyist hardware development as an ephemeral art form. As far as the question in the OP in this thread, can we take it your view is you are against the X8 being released first, you are against the X16p being released first, and you are against them being released simultaneously, because you are fundamentally opposed to some of the goals of the project itself, and wish to edit those goals into goals more to your liking?
    3 points
  18. The web based emulator has a white list for file extensions. The music files have to use the .BIN file extension, too. I think allowed is only .PRG and .BIN, maybe .SEQ, don't remember.
    2 points
  19. The Background actually has 17 layers of scrolling. The clouds/tall mountains are the main BG scroll value. I created a table of 16 raster line values and the demo cycles through these, setting each one as the next line IRQ to trigger on. When the main loop begins, it creates a table of scroll offsets based on the main BG's scroll value (which is 1/8 the FG scroll value). It divides BG scroll by 2 to create a "per line scroll amount" (delta). On each raster IRQ, the BG scroll is incremented by delta. After 16 iterations, the bottom row of water ripples will be scrolled at the same amount as the FG (this happens below the path, so you don't see it scrolling at the same speed as the FG though). All values (FG, BG, and per-rasterline) also keep a subpixel scroll amount, so the speed is very flexible - as low as 1/16 of a pixel per frame (FG scroll). This subpixel scroll amount is maintained through the creation of the 16 raster scroll values as well in order to keep it nice and smooth. I did cheat for Sonic's Y coordinate though. The tile set is arranged very erratically. I'm convinced there must be meta-data in the tile numbers to indicate things like "vertical offset" that I'm just not seeing - and making a table of varying terrain heights from tile IDs was crazy, and required a linear search through the table, just to determine something as simple as how high Sonic is with the ground. So since the BG is fixed and repeating, I just fudged and made a "per column" table by hand and have the game cycle through that table with every 8px of scrolling performed. It works for this demo, but if I were to have more varied terrain or vertical scrolling for things like jumping or higher platforms, I'd have to do a lot more work to make Sonic properly collide with tiles. Not necessary here, so I took the path of least resistance.
    2 points
  20. I've been telling myself for a while now that I'm going to run an FM workshop for the Commander X16. I think the YM2151 has a bit of a bad rep as being "hard to work with" that just isn't deserved. Yes, there's a lot to know to get the full power of the chip to work for you, but it's really not that hard to make it play music if you take the instrument design out of the picture by using existing instrument files. I'd like to help people become more familiar with the YM2151 at least to the point where they feel like they can use it to make basic sounds for use in their programs. My thinking is that I would like to start off with a scripted presentation with a basic overview and work our way down the iceberg so that folks interested in the basics can get what they need right away. Then stick around for geeking out on the deeper aspects of the YM such as how the registers work, and how to design instruments in tools such as Deflemask and actually import them to the X16 for use with your own music format. There's a lot of ways to go with this, and obviously not enough time to cover everything. Plus, I'm not a musical expert by any stretch, so don't expect to watch me compose a chip tune in real time or anything like that. I mostly just want to share the knowledge I've amassed about this chip over the past 2 years of geeking out over it, and hopefully inspire others to love the FM the way I do. I'd be planning for some time mid-November if the interest is there, as I want to get some practice with the streaming tools and swapping between windows and talking and such w/o too much dead air or "ummms" and "uhhhhs" Does this even interest you folks out there?
    2 points
  21. Me, I'm playing through Metroid Dread a second time now that I've beaten it. I want a less-than-crappy clear time.
    2 points
  22. For the games I've released so far (Brixx and Invaderz) for the X16 I would see the following impacts if I had limited them to the X8 specs: No music soundtracks. I use Deflemask to compose and to export VGM and then convert this to a similar condensed format. Without the YM2151 I would have to use a different tracker - which doesn't exist - at least not one usable on a PC. Also my friend who is the composer of the soundtracks won't use anything different than the Deflemask. Graphics need to be nerfed down to 16 colors instead of 256 for the title screens and background graphics (Invaderz). Which maybe would be ok for Brixx, but: for Invaderz that would mean that the background needs to share it's 16 colors with the sprites as well. That might leave around 4 colors for background, 4 colors for player sprite, 4 colors for enemies and 3 colors for explosions/phasers etc. (1 color is the black background color). It won't look nice. Actually I'd rather remove the scenic background images then. Probably less levels in both Brixx and Invaderz. At least there won't be more - which I had planned. The same for my jump & run platformer I had in development (halted atm). Bottom line for me is like this: Had the X16 specs been the X8 spec right from the beginning, the platform would have been less interesting for me and I would not develop for it now. Comparing the different X16 variants the X16e (FPGA) would only offer 512K of RAM and cannot be expanded (the others can). That's a limitation, yes - but it would be plenty of RAM for what is meaningful to do in most cases. Everything else is identical, software will run on all variants. Making the X8 mostly compatible with the X16 (VERA adressing, memor map, I/O adresses, ROM etc.) would leave it as a X16e with less RAM and VRAM... I'd suggest to just go for the X16e (FPGA) directly, to get some cash in. I'd buy one - and the kit version as well.
    2 points
  23. I wasted way too much of my life playing Star Wars Galaxies and other MMOs. All I play anymore is Guild Wars 2, because it is a nice combination of open-ended game play, fun character classes, decent story/lore. Overall, it's just a nice place to vegetate for a while. No Man's Sky, Stardew Valley, Terarria, SimCity 2000, Baldur's Gate, Icewind Dale, Torchlight II, and a whack of 8 bit/16 bit games get played from time to time as well. But the most popular games I play are: Laundry, dishes, picking up after my children, and yard work. Love these old classics!
    2 points
  24. "I didn't say any of that crap you see next to my picture on the Internet." Kong Qiu ("Confucius")
    2 points
  25. They seem to be pretty consistent that if there is a solder yourself kit, it will be the through-hole version. The daughter board holding the Vera and other surface mount components would come finished, the kit builder would solder in the pin block headers and, if they wish, they can squint and imagine it's just a socket for an unusually large chip. Way to invite those who don't think they could build a kit that complex to insult themselves.
    2 points
  26. Given that the bootloader is 512bytes, power-up interrupt vectors included, so I supposed that it would be booting off the serial flashROM, with the Kernel that it loads containing the code to read the SD card. But that was just supposition.
    2 points
  27. I’ve been looking into the Lattice FPGA’s and I think the best step is an 8K type. I think the ICE40HX8K-CB132 is probably a good candidate that will have enough room for a full X-16 FPGA. I dunno if It’s going to require an external RAM chip to handle the X16 banking. I found an introductory course on FPGA’s to familiarize my self with this tech: http://www.ee.ic.ac.uk/pcheung/teaching/ee2_digital/
    2 points
  28. Why not use clear, easy to memorize and understand names like X16-DIP, X16-SMD and X16-FPGA?
    2 points
  29. Hey everyone, I've been on the tail of the X16 for ever now, as a low budget college student I just missed the prime of retro computers, but still grew up with them as my house was kind of high tech and forward thinking. I finally decided to make an account and put the college student view into the project, and maybe one day learn how to code some amazing games for the x16 if I ever get enough practice in the code. Thanks everyone who has actually contributed to the product and its future.
    2 points
  30. ZX-Uno is basically a whole family of FPGA computers that run various cores. One variant available here for 55 € ($65): https://www.antoniovillena.es/store/product/zxunoplus/ As for MiSTer, SiDi is MIST compatible (all but its largest cores) and costs 65 € ($80): https://manuferhi.com/p/sidi-fpga-sin-carcasa-without-case I believe both ZX-Uno and SiDi are way more powerful than X16/X8.
    2 points
  31. Yeah, one of the many things that broke during the software upgrade. I'll have a look at it, but currently, my time is extremely limited. Please remember this is all strictly volunteer work.
    2 points
  32. I bought a C64 Mini for $40 CAD when it was on clearance. Shipped from BC to ON no less. Something like $54 after tax and shipping. I thought that was a great deal in early 2020, but just a couple months ago I saw Gamestop/EBGames was shoving them out the door for $25 CAD! The chassis sits on my desk in the space under my monitor, while the joystick remains in the box unused, because I have read that the stick is easily broken. I never use it. I am sure I wouldn't use the Amiga Mini either. I basically bought the C64 Mini to look at, because it took up less space than my VIC20 and it was both cheaper and better crafted than a similarly sized C64 style case for the Raspberry Pi. Amiga? I am pretty sure that I didn't even know they existed until a few years ago. VIC20, Apple II, C64, NES, Genesis, PC, and Gameboy were the devices I remember using in the 80s/90s. No nostalgia here for me. That said, having owned the C64 Mini for a while now, it's clear to me that I am "over" the whole emulated retro mini thing. I haven't been into collecting things for the sake of doing so since my sister and I gave up hockey cards in the early 90s, so I don't feel like I "gotta have'em all". In a practical sense, I already have a PC which can emulate essentially everything and it's already at my desk hooked up to my SNES style controllers, keyboard, mouse, monitor, and speakers, so... as my wife says every time I suggest we go thrifting, "I thought we need less junk, not more?!" And that said, had it been available in Canada, I would have purchased a "VIC20 Maxi" to keep my real VIC20 company, available space be damned!
    2 points
  33. Yes, provided it won't cost more than $100 CAD to get it to my door. I'd rather that cost be closer to $70 CAD to be honest. Some feedback on the board layout: It's irritating that the USB ports and the SD card slot aren't also on the back edge, because it would be easier to mount the board inside something if all the connections were on the same edge. The reset switch is positioned between the video cable and the power cable. I could see this being fumbly and irritating to use. Stick it on either the right or left end of the rear edge so it's unobstructed. Pin headers for a power switch, reset button, and a power led would also assist in mounting the board into one's desired case. Honestly, a reliable small board like this is far and away more appealing to me than one built from discreet parts. Especially if it's cheap enough to just buy a new one if it does break (and perhaps send the broken one back to be refurbished by someone who has the skills and tools to do so). I don't need to look at a giant board full of chips to understand the architecture, diagrams with explanations are fine, better even. Guess how many times I opened my VIC20 and looked inside it to understand how it was running the software or how a POKE command was accomplishing its task. I would buy an X8, because it's an affordable 8 bit computer that is small enough to use at my desk without cluttering it up or otherwise getting in my way. I mean, l loved looking at my Compaq Deskpro 4000 setup, but I am much happier leaving that portion of my 6' x 6' personal space clear for other hobbies. Same with the C64c that I sold and the VIC20 that I packed away in a tub of other neat stuff when I finally ran out of shelf space. When David revealed the X16 design, I completely lost interest in the project for two reasons: Too rich for my blood! I don't have space for something large. An X8-like device is all I am interested in (FPGA based, not software emulation).
    2 points
  34. So you're talking about your My Sharona computer in the first person, rather than third person now? So let's see it, surely you could take a video of it working in some respect. And no, I won't stop calling you Shirley. If it's still in the design phase, or even if it isn't... why again would David be interested, when he's got a product almost ready to release? But irrespective of David's interest, I'm sure folks here would be interested in what you've got, I'd suggest a post in the "non C16" area of the forum. I'm even confused on what processor you're going with... 6502 or Z80? Or were you going to do a discrete soldered version of a bespoke processor?
    2 points
  35. I'd love an X8. Even in the version that exists now.
    2 points
  36. Feels like AS500 is a leet spelling of ass-oo...
    2 points
  37. I wouldn't say 'simply' either — the Hi-Toro Amiga/Lorraine dev team made the early Daphne video output unit out of wire-wrapped TTL logic, but there were several boards, and it was prone to failure, as were the Agnus and Portia units that were similarly built. And that Daphne had — let's say, "comparable" video output to VERA. So yes, it can be done. But it definitely isn't as simple as throwing together a few discrete components, unless all you want is the equivalent of a PET display. And that is not what our gracious host wants. If he did, he'd be satisfied to leave things to The Future Was 8-Bit and their Mini PET kit.
    2 points
  38. Indeed. The proof is in the pudding. If it's easy, go do it and show us the better more enlightened way. I know it is hard for some people to find time to do such things when writing, derailing thread topics, and fighting to keep foreign governments from making us appear foolish take so much otherwise productive time... It seems it would be a great investment for the world if one could take the Ben Eater world's worst video card and turn it into something comparable to VERA.
    2 points
  39. I don't know the details of the Vera implementation ... not only is the circuitry specification not public, but even if I had it, I would probably have to study up quite a bit in order to understand everything going on ... but one can speculate that with the dataport is driven by an 8MHz clock and Vera running an internal 50MHz clock, that Vera might access the SPRAM 3 cycles out of every four, and the fourth is when the SPRAM can accessed by the dataport. It also seems likely that it works with a rotating pair of rowbuffers, like the Gameduino ... one being used by the pipeline that generates the upcoming scanline bottom layer, intervening sprites, top layer, and any sprites on top, while the other one is being used to generate the current scanline ... and those would be in Block RAM as well, given that so much of data accessed by the video generation pipeline originates in the SPRAM. But while I am less than a beginner in terms of using FPGAs, I have seen the FPGA used for Vera quoted at under $7 Q1 at Mouser, and I have seen other FPGA with far more pins at over $20 Q1, so I am always a bit skeptical about confident assurances that "so and so" can "easily" by done when the "ease" may well involve simply throwing three times as much money at the problem.
    2 points
  40. From what they've said before, exactly ... 8 I/O pins connect to the data bus, 5 I/O pins connect to A0-A4, and from that I would guess three more pins allocated for chip select, R/W and PHI2, with all the lines from the 6502 level shifted to 3.3V.
    2 points
  41. Lattice ICE40UP5K in the 48-pin QFN. https://www.latticesemi.com/en/Products/FPGAandCPLD/iCE40UltraPlus The datasheet: https://www.latticesemi.com/view_document?document_id=51968 Lattice's iCE40 family is a good place to start exploring FPGAs. They are a good deal simpler than most offerings from Xilinx and Intel.
    2 points
  42. after a long wait, Prog8 7.1 (beta version) has just been released. https://github.com/irmen/prog8/releases/tag/v7.1-beta Most of the changes this time are internal to improve code quality and testability. But several important bugfixes and enhancements have also been made. One thing to mention now is that the ``%target`` directive has been removed, the compilation target is set on the command line options. A full list of changes will be published on the 7.1 final release. In the meantime, here is the changes list since 7.0 https://github.com/irmen/prog8/compare/v7.0...master
    2 points
  43. Version 1.2.1

    846 downloads

    This is a Breakout/Blockout/Arkanoid inspired game. . It is my very first try on the X16. You have to use a mouse or a joystick (cursor keys + enter on the emulator) It's only tested it on the emulator (R37, R38), so if anyone of the few with real hardware can give it a go, I'm eager to know the result. Available power ups (no keycodes, you have to catch the dropping badges): [L]: adds one live to player [M]: paddle is magnetic for 30 seconds. Can only hold one ball at a time. [C]: twin laser cannon for 15 seconds, 16 rounds in a row (if you are quick). [D]: Duplicates ball, so now you can have fun with 2... Keyboard commands: 's': sound on/off. 'p': pause game 'q': quit game. How to use with the local emulator: Unpack ZIP file into the same directory as the emulator. Start the emulator, then enter LOAD"BRIXX.PRG" RUN Or use the "Try now" button. Let me know what you think...
    1 point
  44. I hear ya on the laundry and dishes! That, and working, way too much. I did my fair share of MMOs over the years. I only still play one from time to time, an old one called MapleStory. It's a platformer style MMORPG that's been around since the early 2000's, and my family plays it, so I play it with them. I have looked at Guild Wars a lot over the years too, I just just never pulled the trigger on it. I am always looking for games my wife and I can play together, along with her brother and sometimes even her mom. Grandma plays MapleStory. lol No Man's Sky is an awesome game! Still trying to get my wife to try it. I also played the heck out of Stardew Valley, Terraria, and Torchlight 2. Similarly, I do find myself mashing the buttons on a lot of old 8/16-bit titles lately. Just having a blast. To be honest, I am all over the place, it depends on the day really. There are games I just always finding myself going back to, the Battlefield titles is one of them, as in Ark, the Command & Conquer series, and the Borderlands games. I did come across a really fun little game called "Craft the World", it's better to look at it than me try to explain it. It's been out a while now (2014), but it's a lot of fun to play. I have over 160 hours into it and have played through it 3 or 4 times now. haha https://store.steampowered.com/app/248390/Craft_The_World/
    1 point
  45. When I lived in Berkeley, CA, I knew Bryce Nesbitt. He went on to work @ Commodore on the Amiga and I believe also worked on the CDTV at some point; I saw some YouTube clips of him being interviewed for one of the Amiga retro documentaries; he wasn't the most flashy of engineers but was one of the smartest and really cared about doing the right thing. In the early 80s, Jack just happened to slip on a banana peel and into luck when Michael Tomczyk basically begged him for a job @ Commodore; Michael fostered a no-nonsense marketing prowess that powered Commodore through the formative years... after, Jack vanished and Commodore lost the plot. It happens to the best of companies (Digital Equipment was one, Silicon Graphics, Sun Microsystems, others, the list is endless). But with chip-fab capabilities and many innovations in the Amiga days it is possible that in an alternate universe, people have Commodore televisions hanging on their walls (instead of LG) and comPhones instead of iPhones. Here's the clip. If you are interested in Commodore history, this 'raw' footage might be interesting. I haven't seen the full movie but would like to: Bryce looks and speaks exactly as I remember (35 years since he was over my place when I lived just off campus); genuinely nice guy and really wears his heart on his sleeve...
    1 point
  46. As a sub-orbital flight, I don't think it would have been necessary to eat enroute. A sippy tube in the helmet if they got thirsty was probably all that was needed.
    1 point
  47. I can buy 8x11" sheets of plastic sticker paper for use in our laserjet for less than 30 cents each. That guy... wow! No need to circle the wagons. We're on the same team here. For a project like this to reach critical mass, where the userbase is sufficiently large as to make it worthwhile for developers to create software for the platform, the "big picture" must be considered along with the wants of a minority of extremely enthusiastic specialists. Unfortunately, the community on this forum appears to be comprised mainly of people who, due to their very specific desires and their fear of not getting what they want, lack the objectivity that is required to see the big picture. I will do my best paint the image, but if you still can't see it afterwards. I am not going to arguing with you. The public facing project on the whole is comprised of: David's fame. David's goals of creating a modern 8 bit computer that is easy enough for one person to understand, while being inexpensive/accessible to anyone (note his non-profit statement in the first dream computer video). A platform that has the capacity to host really fun games. A platform that comes with all the tool required to create said games using the platform itself, including excellent documentation. Hardware that has a nostalgic look and feel, while also having its own identity that resonates with David's audience. A reliable, responsive hardware platform that is "instant on" and as easy to use as the Commodore machines. A hardware platform that has lots of potential for modification. Points 1 through 6 are the aspects of this project that are the most import to reaching the critical mass of users and developers and all of them are also 100% able to be brought to life using the small board FPGA-only design. Furthermore, this design is the least expensive manner in which the hardware can be manufactured (and physically shipped). As such, it objectively makes the most sense to launch a 100% compatible FPGA-only X16 before launching the much more complex and costly "chips and dip" version. To the vast majority of people, the Commander X16 is nothing more than a toy. No one needs one for anything, yet plenty of people would be happy to pay a reasonable sum for some fun. See the sales volume of the Gameboy (118 million) vs. the XBox One (51 million). Given that profit isn't a consideration with this project, the popularity of the platform itself is the primary measure of its success. Selling affordable FPGA-only X16s first would put real live X16s into the homes of real live X16 users, from curious everyday folks right on up to hard core hackers. This momentum would build upon itself as more games become available and more learners become developers. That same momentum will cause even more people to buy the full sized X16 when it becomes available, which in turn will increase the platform's popularity as the community sees the successes of the hardware tinkerers. Success builds upon success and that's great for everyone! This is the objective reality. I know many of you here are emotionally invested in the full sized hardware and that's completely OK, your reasons are your own. However, I implore you to take a step back and consider how your protectionism towards your own personal desires harms the success of the project as a whole, because what its of the utmost importance to you is in fact only a small portion of the project as a whole. Take from this what you will, but please know that I don't have a horse in this race; I don't much care either way if the X16 becomes a viable long term successful platform. However, many of you folks with clouded objectivity do care, deeply. I sincerely hope that I have helped you see more clearly the path towards the overall success of the Commander X16 platform, a path that will help you get exactly what you want.
    1 point
  48. Yes, it went up back in August. The name was wrong, though, so it was the "AS500." At the time, I was thinking, I didn't know IBM had released a follow-up to their popular AS400 mainframe..
    1 point
  49. After thinking to have understood the FPGA thing, I would not mind getting an X16 in FPGA only. I don't have to solder it. IMHO the success of such a project depends on the amount of the community. Getting the price down seems for me the most important part in the equation (having a physical thing instead of just an ARM based emulation). Could an FPGA for the early adopters have the option to "change the wiring" if it seems necessary to fix something later?
    1 point
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