I'm wondering what it would take to utilize an Apple ImageWriter II as a TI printer... The main problem here is that the TI printer out is parallel while the Imagewriter II is a serial printer.
According to the specs, it uses RS422 protocols and is 100% software-controlled. Basically they took the hardware control and dip switches out of the original ImageWriter and made it a solely proprietary machine.
But.... that doesn't mean it's impossible.
I know I can use HDX to print pages to a modern printer, but that's not really what I'm after... as a matter of fact I have a nice Panasonic KX-P1091 printer as well which works fine with the TI. My primary objective is to have one Dot Matrix printer (preferably the ImageWriter, as it is superior in many ways to the 1091) set up at all times, and to make it switchable via a Belkin data switch box. This way I can print from my Mac, my Apple IIe, and my TI-99/4A. The first two aren't an issue, as the Mac has ready-made drivers for the printer, and the printer was practically designed to work on any Apple products. Is it possible to make this serial printer print from the TI's parallel port?
I'm assuming that the immediate answer is "no." Then the question becomes, "how do we print using the rs232 port?" There are adapters to go from rs232 to rs422... but I think it would be a bit more complex than that, since we have no software to communicate precisely what we are wanting to accomplish with the data we are sending to the printer... But perhaps we can do a conversion from parallel to serial....
This link is for a shift register IC that looks like it takes 8 bit parallel inputs and converts to serial. This could end up being a breadboard project, if it REALLY is that simple... which I doubt.
The pinouts for both machines are below. I'm genuinely interested in figuring this problem out.
TI PIO pinout (16 pin connector) Pin # Function 1 Handshake Out 2 Data, LSB 3 Data 4 Data 5 Data 6 Data 7 Data 8 Data 9 Data, MSB 10 Handshake IN 11 Logic Ground 12 10 OHM pull up (+5v) 13 Spare Input Bit 14 Spare Output Bit 15 1 kilohm pull up (+5v) 16 Logic Ground TI RS232 serial port pinout (db25) 1 Ground 2 RD-1 Data input 3 TX-1 Data pit[it 4 NC 5 CTS-1 Clear to Send 6 DSR Data Set Ready 7 Ground 8 DCD1 Data Carrier Detected 9 NC 10 NC 11 NC 12 DCD-2 Data Carrier Detected 13 CTS-2 Clear to Send 14 RD-2 Data Input 15 NC 16 TX-2 Data Output 17 NC 18 NC 19 DTR-2 Data Terminal Ready 20 DTR-1 Data Terminal Ready 21 NC 22 NC 23 NC 24 NC 25 NC Apple Imagewriter II pinout (mini-DIN 8 pin) 1 DTR Data Terminal Ready 2 DSR Data Set Ready 3 TXD Transmit Data 4 Ground 5 RXD Receive Data 6 TXD Transmit Data 8 RXD Receive Data