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Any 32K software that loads via tape?


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#1 Vinnie D. OFFLINE  

Vinnie D.

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Posted Tue Jun 12, 2018 4:26 PM

Recently my 32k sidecar expansion arrived for my TI-99/4a. I quickly discovered though that it's inaccessible via BASIC, and it'll be a while before I invest in a disk emulator or final GROM to load any 32k software.  I do however have cables and a tape recorder for machines that load cassettes that way. Still as far as I know, most cassette software for the TI-99 are text adventures, and companions to cartridges like Adventure, nothing that was written to take advantage of the 32k sidecar.

 

I really just want to test this thing to make sure it's in proper working order. Any software will do. Is there a tape version available of extended BASIC or Terminal Emulator II? Assembly? Any game that needs that much RAM? Ideally in wav format to cut down on the hassle of converting first, but I'll take what I can get.



#2 jrhodes OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jun 12, 2018 6:44 PM

See here for a newly made tool/exploit involving tape/cs1.

 

Here is a game you can load via this method, "terrahawks"

To load, you will need to write them to tape, or play them from a mp3 player/android phone/tablet, preferably something that the line-out can be amplified if needed.

Load cass24k.wav, run it.

Type CALL LINK("OLDCS")

It will begin the process.

prepare terrahawks part1 for playback.

When part 1 is done, prepare part 2 for playback.

When part 2 is loaded, you should be able to type RUN, and enjoy.

Attached File  cass24k.wav   488.79KB   4 downloadsAttached File  terrahawks part 1.wav   6.76MB   4 downloadsAttached File  terrahawks part 2.wav   1.71MB   4 downloads

For those wondering, i basically used two different .TITAPE files when i saved the program, then reset the emulator with disk attached, and wrote the contents of each tape file to a different file on the disk.

Then i used CS1er to convert each file to a wav, after extracting them from the disk using Ti99Dir.

The zip file contains the TITAPE and TIDISK files i used in Win99Simulator to do this.

Attached File  win99 files.zip   12.79KB   7 downloads

Here is a video of it in action, but i seem to have encountered some sort of bug in the program (towards the end of the video)?

Attached File  Classic99.AVI.zip   201.16KB   3 downloads

The next zip file includes some games that make use of 32k (CALL LOADs require it) but do not require special loading like the terrahawks game above.

Attached File  32k.zip   1.03MB   8 downloads


Edited by jrhodes, Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:40 PM.


#3 jrhodes OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:49 PM

Wait, i just read your first post again, and you do not yet even have a extended basic cartridge?

Sorry, but for everything i uploaded above, you will at least need a copy of extended basic.

Arcade shopper has Extended Basic, or you can find them on ebay and the likes.

Honestly though, if you can afford it, get either the finalgrom99 cart, or a copy of rich's RXB.

I myself just use TI Extended basic and a tape recorder. (Mainly because they were sold together when i picked up my TI at a flea-market for only $25)

Most of my TI time is through emulators, but i get the urge to try things out on real hardware from time to time.

As long as your TI can read the incoming wav file without errors, you can save it back to tape for a physical copy from there.

I do plan on upgrading to a more-full setup, perhaps with a Raspberry pi and TIPI, but that is a while in the future for me, for the time being.


Edited by jrhodes, Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:32 PM.


#4 Opry99er OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jun 13, 2018 11:54 AM

Vanilla console BASIC cannot access the 32k expansion. BASIC programs can only reside in VDP RAM or on cartridge.

#5 Vinnie D. OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jun 14, 2018 9:15 AM

Thanks. Looks like I'm off to ebay to grab an Extended BASIC cart then. This proved quite surprising since other retro computers can easily find added RAM through BASIC (except the C64 which already has all the RAM it can possibly address), so this weird sidecar style of expansion the TI-99/4A uses caught me off guard.



#6 OLD CS1 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jun 14, 2018 9:54 AM

The minor technical exceptions to this rule is with the MiniMemory and Editor/Assembler cartridges.  These both extend BASIC to allow access to the 32k expansion and VDP RAM but you are otherwise still using console BASIC with all its limitations.  BITD I did not have access to a disk system or the 32k RAM, but with the MiniMemory I could augment my BASIC programs with assembly language.



#7 mizapf OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jun 14, 2018 10:01 AM

If the memory expansion were just an expansion of existing memory, it would have been easily possible to allow access for BASIC. But the 32K expansion is actually an addition of a different kind of memory. The console memory was just video memory (except for a small 256 byte RAM for the CPU), and since BASIC is all interpreted, you can use almost any kind of weirdly accessed memory, as long as the interpreter knows how to access it. TI did not include commands to activate the hires mode that would have needed most video memory and only allowed the simpler modes, so there was enough space for a BASIC program.

 

Extended Basic adds some code to handle both types of memory; this was not planned for TI BASIC, or there was just not enough space in ROM. Or people who tried to work productively started to nag TI until they added it.



#8 acadiel OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jun 14, 2018 10:58 AM

The minor technical exceptions to this rule is with the MiniMemory and Editor/Assembler cartridges.  These both extend BASIC to allow access to the 32k expansion and VDP RAM but you are otherwise still using console BASIC with all its limitations.  BITD I did not have access to a disk system or the 32k RAM, but with the MiniMemory I could augment my BASIC programs with assembly language.

 

With the Playground tool, people knowing how to mess with all these pointers to get CS1 to save large programs, etc, I'm sure that someone enterprising hacker in here might come up with a BASIC exploit that can load/save assembly with a plain console with just cassette and 32K.  

 

Nothing surprises me anymore... esp with all the debuggers we have, we can compare all of scratchpad when operations are happening, 32K, etc, and I'm guessing how tools like Playground and this were developed.  



#9 globeron OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jun 15, 2018 10:57 AM

It is possible to load assembler games from tape with exbas+32k. (but you need someone to help to put on tape), see my videos on Facebook TI99ERS group and software in AtariAge somewhere.

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