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Edmond D

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Everything posted by Edmond D

  1. A friend asked why would anyone let someone so old go up. I responded that, its got oxygen and food in a temperature controlled environment with health monitoring - kinda like intensive care. Plus, if he passes on he’ll live up to “To boldly go where no man has gone before.” Space travel for the rich and famous to me is a non-event.
  2. Consider using Google to play the scammers along by looking up a screenshot on what they are asking you about. I normally just ask for a moment when I contacted by a scammer, put in my earplugs then blow my 120 dB whistle. Eventually they get the message.
  3. Perhaps a community-based group approach? I like many don't have a ton of free time, but there are many talented programmers here that perhaps could spend 2-3 hours a week on a group project. My other suggestion is to extend the X16 Assembly Environment to support macros as an addition, rather than building a whole new tool or porting another design.
  4. There is one hopefully going into the ROM (https://sites.google.com/view/x16asmenv/home), but the aim is to provide a simple tool. Macros not included.
  5. Much like the VIC 20 had a cartoon character in the manuals, I've prototyped a mascot along the lines of cutie for your new company
  6. Are you thinking of this environment? - https://sites.google.com/view/x16asmenv/home The roadmap suggest that it will be in the ROM for the shipping version.
    The graphics and sound are great, which shows a high level of design. I'd give that aspect of the game 5 stars. The gameplay is extremely challenging to the point I've given up on playing it more, as five seconds of play resulted in a collision on the easiest level. That earns the game an overall rating of two stars for me.
  7. I don't think @BruceMcF is saying the units are being made yet; he's qualifying that the boards shown in the videos are of prototypes of what will evolve to become the production model. The team making the X16 has not announced that it is in production yet. The FAQ suggest that there with be some sort of crowdfunding to get the computer into that stage. We'll all be excited when that happens, more so when those who buy the X16p receive and assemble it.
    This game is quite well done in terms of graphics - everything is smooth. The sound track is what you would expect for an arcade game - its catchy but short so it loops. I look forward to the next revision of the game! In the online emulator the keys are the cursor pad (left, up, right) and the Control K is select and fire.
  8. As much as open flexible general purpose tools are useful, I think for the X16 world that specific purpose tools would serve the users in the community better. In the examples given above, each binary file needs a source file to create it. While source code version control and storage have come a long way, it's still maintenance work. Each resource is going to need its own generating script. Then there is a need to have a tool that can present the data in the file for human inspection. For specific resources, such as game state data, that's going to be tied to the game itself and most likely requires the approach of general purpose tools. But for a sprite resource a well designed sprite editor would eliminate a per-sprite development tool by serving to work on any sprite file. It also eliminates the need for a separate tool to look at the resource files. While it would be a stand alone specific purpose application, if it was an open community project then improvements could come from those who have the time, motivation, and the skill set. Everyone would benefit. I see the x16 as a "fun/simple" development platform, but for the serious/commercial work being done on a modern computer that overcomes most of the limitations. Which comes to the question - should X16 development be on a modern platform, or limited to tools on the X16 itself?
  9. It refers to the stage of development - each stage will result in a X16 with a distinct hardware implementation. The FAQ says the details are in the second video, but I can't seem to find where the 8 Bit Guy covers it specifically. I'd suggest that reading the FAQ and watching the videos will give you a better idea than I can.
  10. While Perl is useful for these types of tasks, perhaps now the tools for creating graphics/sound binaries have developed enough on the X16? I've phrased it as a question since I'm not there yet in coding for the X16 platform, nor have I investigated yet. The other thought is that it becomes another tool one has to learn to do this type of work, something that requires a little background knowledge and investment of time. While many may already have this skillset, consider the users who just don't have the experience or the bandwidth to take on another thing. Right now my feeling is the X16 platform requires one to know or learn too many things from too many places that really aren't in coding up an application, rather just tasks to get at the business end of coding. I think one of the successes of the VIC-20 was that with the user's guide and the programmers guide one had all one needed to get going with no side tasks that required building software tools. That being said, I'm no Mozart or Picasso. A sound editor or sprite composer in my hands would only allow me to easily create something bad like a smashed bug on a blue Triscuit. But I'd like to have the ready built tools rather than learn the bare minimum on another complex technology that I wouldn't have to know/use otherwise. PS - I have learnt and used Perl in the past, and might use it in the future someday, but that effort came with some $ involved, and the X16 is a hobby platform.
  11. It isn't 8 bit until you encounter at least on issue
  12. 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!
  13. The guy with the loudest keyboard (Cherry MX Green) would be the first to go (if the system had a keyboard)!
  14. 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."
  15. 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-
  16. 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.
  17. 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.
  18. 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.
  19. 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?
  20. 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
  21. 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.
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