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Edmond D

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  1. It isn't 8 bit until you encounter at least on issue
  2. It doesn't look like smooth sailing as there's little freeboard showing. Perhaps someone should be managing the bilge pumps! Congrats on getting the sprites in C going!
  3. The guy with the loudest keyboard (Cherry MX Green) would be the first to go (if the system had a keyboard)!
  4. Yes - sorry for not being clear in my humour. Those computers didn't have the benefit of the internet for their success. I feel any retro computer really needs that support these days to be successful. Hopefully this community helps make the X16 become a "thing."
  5. A real retro computer wouldn't need any online internet presence at all. Look at the VIC 20, Atari 800, or even the Timex Sinclair - non of these devices had the benefit of mass marketing or community in the virtual world and sold millions of units world wide even before PayPal existed. Also, by avoiding the internet you'll avoid the design being stollen and monetized by a large stubborn corporations that want to muscle you out and subvert the design. You wouldn't want something like this-
  6. Well, the intended image looks like a barnacle with its proper colour, but proves it's just a pallet issue. I've not got to C on the X16 yet, so all I can provide is amusement rather than specific helpful advice yet. Sorry.
  7. The image looks to be of a squashed fly on a blue Triscuit cracker to me Consider using sprite data that has a single colour and a simple shape (such as an "X") to make sense of what is intended and what you observe.
  8. Unfortunately very possible. I heard that a DVD burner was brought for a factory to do backups of PCs on the floor. It apparently 'disappeared' within a week.
  9. I think it is possible in the future, just not probable that a code converter could be done. I believe it would take a ton of computing power to do so; I don't see it being on the fly on the X16 as there is only so much one can expect a 65C02 to be able to do. Looking at your example you've converted about 20 bytes of assembly into over 100 bytes - five times. I think memory space would quickly become an issue. While the example puts two characters on the screen, I don't think many existing C64 programs would take such an approach, rather subroutines would be involved. I guess that might reduce the memory required. Consider computer translation of human languages. One can convert some text word-for-word, but translating idioms really requires a grasp of the language and the intentions of the speaker/writer. With enough human power a program could be converted as you've proven. The question becomes how long it would take before a computer had enough power and insight to do the task? In that future, would "retro computing" be considered using a device manufactured last year?
  10. This sounds like a great approach to optimizing the code. As you mentioned, the original code is for teaching - illustrative and clear to us humans. Starting from a clear working example and then optimizing step by step is my preferred way to do this type of task. Trying to optimize while writing the first draft seems to be a way to have faulty, hard to understand, broken code that might never run right to begin with
  11. Having worked in a plastics manufacturing plant, there is always "off-product/off-spec" made. Colour of the original plastic resin may have varied from shipment to shipment to Commodore. Plus the raw material used to make the resin would also have variation too. If the resin supplier had multiple factories that would account for variations as well. These variations can be minimized with a stringent quality-control program, but at a price. The plant I was in would keep any scrap resin around and find buyers who weren't particular in physical characteristics so much as getting a discount deal on price. It cost money to make plastic, so selling recoups some of the cost and avoids making more plastic. Does anyone know that the case molding wasn't outsourced to a sub-contractor? If the prototype theory is correct, most likely it was made at a location that wasn't the main factory using perhaps a different supply of resin, and certainly not the operators on the main factory floor. Heat/bake anything for a longer time will most likely result in a darker colour. That might explain the differences in colouration from a stock machine. As for the industrial use theory, perhaps it was a split unit so that the main electronics were in an enclosure for some reason (intrinsically safe?) , the keyboard external so that if something went wrong with it it would be easily and cheaply replaced. Anyway just some information and speculation on this retro mystery. Take it for the entertainment value that it is.
  12. Perhaps I should have been clearer - optimizing the Basic code. Going to assembler, as SlithyMatt has already shown is going to generate the image in less time. He's pointed out that the fixed point stuff would require serious rework. That effort would be interesting, but not really useful for the average basic programmer. Rather than take on this project directly, perhaps starting with what can be done with the simple version would be a good start. This approach should avoid the "couple of hours" it takes to complete and be able to be ported to the fancy version. Here's the video on the "simple" version and the code appears around the 8:30 mark I see Snickers11001001 is interested in the challenge. Given his in-depth and informative thread I think it would be hard to beat his attempt. Also, I'll add in keeping it scoped to the X16 platform, as other platform's Basics most likley are going to have different optimization techniques.
  13. I believe they are being wise not to take on a a small one-off project that doesn't conform to how they do business with the mass number of projects that they process. They may have to go through many steps that might be painful & costly to do the work with an image file. Even costing out the price for the work is probably out of their scope or experience. They have their right to be stubborn and not give reasons, just like you have the option to find a different company to do business with. I think they are looking at a bottom line. I don't think you can make it cost effective for them to event try without serious amount of financial profit. It's typical for companies to use price to avoid taking on a job/contract/customer. They do this to avoid the perceived hassle in dealing with a customer, knowing that they are better off without one difficult customer while having several other customers they can service without issues. I'm NOT saying you are difficult at all, just that the situation requires a different approach to achieve boards. Your project may be perceived to be more work than benefit to them. OK - then someone is going to have to build a gerber file if you want a modern company to produce boards. If the board layout/design is so simple, a very small shop should be able to take on the work and produce what you need to keep the project moving forward - either by generating a gerber file or doing the work. While I'm impressed with the innovative design, I feel that letting this item stop the progress would be a mistake.
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