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Atari's Plato Cartridge question


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#1 DarkLord OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 8, 2012 3:43 PM

Hey gang. I had a user pose this question in the 8bit message base on
my BBS:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I was reading about an atari cartridge called "Atari's PLATO catridge" or
Atari Access Software for the PLATO Services Network for connecting to
cyber1. Is this cartridge available for use in an atari emulator, i.e.
Atari800MacX?
Thanks for any info.
Teddy
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I've never used this cartridge and I don't use emulators so can anyone
provide some information?

Thanks! :)

PS I did find a link for info on it: http://www.atarimaga...latorising.html

#2 Fox-1 / mnx OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 8, 2012 6:53 PM

Attached File  Learning Phone, The (PLATO).bin   8KB   151 downloads

I have no idea if this is what you want but it's a terminal and is "Plato" related.

#3 kheffington OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 8, 2012 7:54 PM

Not going to be much use to you as it was an online service that is long gone.

http://en.wikipedia....omputer_system)

Edited by kheffington, Sun Apr 8, 2012 8:51 PM.


#4 Spancho OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 9, 2012 4:31 AM

But according wikipedia the Cyber1 service opened in 2004 and it does not state that it has been shut down again.
So to me it looks as it can be used.
See as well http://www.cyber1.org



Not going to be much use to you as it was an online service that is long gone.

http://en.wikipedia....omputer_system)


Edited by Spancho, Mon Apr 9, 2012 4:41 AM.


#5 kheffington OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 9, 2012 9:47 AM

---------

But according wikipedia the Cyber1 service opened in 2004 and it does not state that it has been shut down again.
So to me it looks as it can be used.
See as well http://www.cyber1.org



Not going to be much use to you as it was an online service that is long gone.

http://en.wikipedia....omputer_system)


Yes Cyber1 has the Plato system online with terminal access over the net but not as a dial in system using the the Atari Cartridge. You need a terminal interface on Windows, Mac or Linux. So the Cart is a collectible but not very useful.

http://www.cyber1.org/pterm.asp

Edited by kheffington, Mon Apr 9, 2012 9:49 AM.


#6 DarkLord OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 9, 2012 6:43 PM

Alright, thanks for the info gang - I forwarded this on to the user who was asking.

#7 _The Doctor__ OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 31, 2018 10:37 PM

Why couldn't we use APE or Cygwin, or other solution to connect to the service...or even a lantronix uds in raw mode, or even pssible major hack/rework for dragon cart use in that matter. I say the 8 bit re plants it's flag here! :)


Edited by _The Doctor__, Wed Jan 31, 2018 10:44 PM.


#8 JamesD OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 31, 2018 11:29 PM

I looked up the PLATO info a while back, and they moved to a web based system that charges a yearly access rate.
I have no idea what they did with all the old stuff.   



#9 MrFish OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 10:30 AM

I was using this terminal-based Plato server a few years back. As far as I can tell it's still free.

 

Cyber1


Edited by MrFish, Thu Feb 1, 2018 10:31 AM.


#10 Gunstar OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 10:59 AM

What was PLATO exactly, was it like the old Lynx terminals?



#11 tschak909 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 11:54 AM

As a former PLATO user:

 

PLATO was a very ambitious project that utilized CDC 6600 (and later machines) to implement a massive time sharing environment for educators and students. It was started in the late 60s, and operated in its classic form until the late 90s.

 

You could think of it as say, Compuserve or The Source, but for making and using educational courses for young kids up to adults.

 

The system itself was normally utilized by a series of specially designed plasma screen terminals (there were five models of terminals built), which could dial into the service, and there were local access numbers available.

 

The typical users of these systems were universities and schools, but a few lucky individuals managed to get private terminals (not cheap!)

 

The system itself was designed to be extended, and many teachers and students made TUTOR modules for every educational subject known to man, which could range from multiple choice type tests, to fully interactive simulations and input.

 

Atari was one of the few microcomputers that got a PLATO client. I can tell you that because of the original terminal's high resolution (512 horizontal pixels), scaling it down to 160 horizontal pixels really put a dent on how it looked...and because the original screens were orange plasma, now you know precisely why The Learning Phone cartridge has that curious orange background. 

 

In 2004, a handful of very intrepid and persistent individuals managed to find a working complete backup tape set of the last Cyber system that ran PLATO, and restored it. It now runs as http://cyber1.org/and has modern terminal implementations of the PLATO V terminal so that you can see the system for yourself. I would urge everyone here to do so, as PLATO was _VERY_ much ahead of its time.

 

(as an aside, do you all know Lotus Notes? Believe it or not, it actually started on PLATO as NOTES. There were notes files all over the system, from your personal notes files to notes files for groups and systems administrators, they typically were all public.)

 

-Thom

(edited because I had a brain fart on the PLATO terminal resolution)


Edited by tschak909, Thu Feb 1, 2018 12:10 PM.


#12 tschak909 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 11:57 AM

This is a PLATO V terminal:

 

platoIV.jpg

 

This guy was made in the late 70s. Note the bright orange plasma screen.

 

-Thom



#13 tschak909 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 12:25 PM

I exist on cyber1 as tschak909 in the inetd group. Feel free to leave me a personal note (once you learn your way around..it's VERY different, so  requires an open mind and patience.)

 

-Thom



#14 a8isa1 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 7:11 PM

Thanks to Joe_z and Altirra I got to see Atari Learning Phone running.  Something I've wanted since I sat in on a static presentation back in the mid '80s.

 

Sorry, I can't show much.  I don't have an account.  However, this little bit made me happy.   Thanks Joe!

 

altirra_plato_session.png

 

 

Joe_z mentioned that some of the terminal code sequences don't appear to be right.  There's also the need to connect to the port that supports color even though Atari Learning Phone has only 2 colors.

 

The screen shown above is a window to the 512x512 frame.  There's also a scaled mode (below).

 

altirra_plato_full.png


Edited by a8isa1, Thu Feb 1, 2018 7:18 PM.


#15 tschak909 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 7:56 PM

a8isa1 PLEASE get in contact with the cyber1 people. They want to help supporting these systems. Please get a sign-on and reach out in the public notes file!

 

-Thom



#16 tschak909 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 7:58 PM

and yes, using the ASCII mode makes sense, as the "classic" mode utilizes a very unusual block mode output that only works on PLATO V (PPT) terminals.

 

-Thom



#17 tschak909 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 8:06 PM

For Reference: Here is the CYBIS sign-on in PLATO V mode:

 

plato1.PNG

 

And here's the CYBIS sign-on in ASCII mode:

 

plato2.PNG

 

The ASCII mode supports color, but you lose a few features (such as vertical text, which is used by a few lessons.)

 

(and for the record, lesson is a generic term for any and all programs on PLATO)

 

-Thom



#18 a8isa1 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 8:24 PM

a8isa1 PLEASE get in contact with the cyber1 people. They want to help supporting these systems. Please get a sign-on and reach out in the public notes file!

 

-Thom

I don't know anything about the program or its usage.   I had cobbled together (more like minor tinkering) a wifi modem out of a nodeMCU dev board I wondered if the telnet feature would work with cyber1.   I failed to get any activity.   When I tried in Altirra some scrambled text appeared but the word NEXT was clearly visible.

 

I didn't understand what was going on.  Joe_z took a look and learned of a second port to access the system.   We thought nothing was happening.  However, after several minutes of IRC chat the Atari screen (in Altirra) started drawing the screen.

 

It turns out Atari Learning Phone requires an interface that downloads the R: handler to the Atari.  Disk booting with the cartridge isn't enabled.  If I still had my 850 I might have been able to get my ad hoc wifi modem to communicate.

 

We tried a quick hack of the cartridge to allow disk booting but it didn't like the R: handler loading that way or it didn't like an alternate R: hander (Rverter).

 

If you'd like to try Atari Learning Phone in Altirra enable an 850 in Devices (Altirra 2.90 or 3.00, not sure about earlier versions) and add the simulated modem.

 

Syntax to connect is: atdicyberserv.org 8005.   The 'i' is needed (I for 'Internet'?) .  Note the space (' ') before the port number.   Don't use a colon (':').


Edited by a8isa1, Thu Feb 1, 2018 8:38 PM.


#19 a8isa1 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 8:33 PM

Joe_z just told me that Atari Learning Phone is monochrome only.  It can't interpret the color sequences of the ASCII mode (8 bit mode) nor does it know what to do with the 20bit mode.



#20 tschak909 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 8:43 PM

Correct. You guys need to get in touch with the cyber1 people, they'll work with you to work out an 8-bit ASCII mode that will work in monochrome mode. Please grab pterm, ask for a sign-on and reach out in the public notes file. They will respond. They did the same for the Apple II people not too long ago.



#21 tschak909 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 8:46 PM

Here's a gallery of shots from a PLATO (CYBIS) session:

 

27355994_10155075084032115_2411083058482

 

27355893_10155075086197115_7325717454491

 

27355721_10155075091192115_2446350461782

 

27501046_10155075094522115_5935829171561

 

27173432_10155075099022115_5545533148505

 

27500371_10155075105302115_4063977713933

 

27625093_10155075107082115_8570172721091

 

27625324_10155075110902115_1938897105948

 

If you want to see it, grab a  copy of pterm, and ask for a sign-on. :)

 

-Thom



#22 JamesD OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 11:07 PM

Didn't Plato include some voice?  How does the cart deal with that?



#23 video61atarisales OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Feb 1, 2018 11:09 PM

Hey gang. I had a user pose this question in the 8bit message base on
my BBS:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I was reading about an atari cartridge called "Atari's PLATO catridge" or
Atari Access Software for the PLATO Services Network for connecting to
cyber1. Is this cartridge available for use in an atari emulator, i.e.
Atari800MacX?
Thanks for any info.
Teddy
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I've never used this cartridge and I don't use emulators so can anyone
provide some information?

Thanks! icon_smile.gif

PS I did find a link for info on it: http://www.atarimaga...latorising.html

 

 

 

 i purchased the original prototype cart from atari many many years ago. i made a few and sold them, so a few might be floating around, or have been dumped. there may have been a few sold by atari also. i do not know for sure, but i never saw one packaged from atari.

 

lance

www.atarisales.com

 



#24 tschak909 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Feb 2, 2018 12:44 AM

Didn't Plato include some voice?  How does the cart deal with that?

 

Nope.

 

-Thom



#25 tschak909 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Feb 2, 2018 1:39 AM

I have opened a note in the public notesfile about the Atari PLATO client:

 

  plato3.png

 

-Thom






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