I just had to post here- in case there is anyone who hasn't yet watched Peter Dell's amazing Videos on programming the A8 in machine language:
I have futzed around the A8 for years, read some books about assembly but I never really understood how you do it (eg - knowledge of the Atari chips, memory map and how you use them to actually do some simple things in assembly). Peter shows you.
His series is amazingly concise yet logical and he builds nicely thru the series and covers all the basic parts of the Atari. For me it's been the first time that I've truly caught on as to what is going on in there, and how the chips are working in concert to make this machine run.
I've done a fair bit of Modern Ruby/Python/Node programming for networking apps- and of course it's nothing even remotely like that.
It's so worth spending the time - just to learn how amazing the Atari hardware, os and chip are and how brilliant the designers were when they sat down years ago and decided on how to build this machine. Those guys were true visionaries in terms of building a flexible system to be used in ways they hadn't even thought of.
And of course his http://www.wudsn.com...de/installationWUDSN is a one-stop installation to start using assembly on a modern PC and run it on the included Altirra emulator with one click. Amazing.
So, thank you Peter if you are around here anymore.