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Member Since 21 Jan 2008
OFFLINE Last Active Apr 30 2019 2:44 AM

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In Topic: BASIC compilers

Sat Apr 13, 2019 2:47 PM

Even the version of Turbo Basic XL I just played with last night isn't a "true" compiler. It compiles to a runtime type file. 
I would love to find a basic compiler that will make a .com or .xex or .exe file for me that can be run from the L command in DOS 2.5

The ABC compiler creates a standalone executable as well. (.EXE or .COM)

In Topic: DOS, Disks, Density and Sector counts... education question.

Fri Apr 12, 2019 5:58 AM

UART or not... this would not have made much of a difference. The major limitation of the 850 is that you cannot have incoming serial traffic and outgoing SIO traffic at the same time, i.e. one cannot store received serial data to disk. It would have needed additional RAM on the 850, and usage of the "interrupt" line of the SIO bus to signal that this buffer is ready to receive by the host. That would have been a somewhat more complicated design, though: Additional on-device memory (probably 128 bytes, better 256 bytes), and a smarter communication protocol.

In Topic: BASIC compilers

Thu Apr 11, 2019 2:00 PM


I'm more interested in a true compiler.

MMG is a true compiler. But that does not mean that its compiled code is much faster than that of ABC. It will just consist of a series of JSR instructions... similar subroutines are also in the ABC runtime, just dispatched by its p-Code, so it does not make much of a difference.

Do not expect an optimizing compiler as you would find them nowadays. They are all - including the TBXL compiler - pretty straightforward.

ABC has actually been more used for "copy protection" purposes as it is quite hard to follow the program logic through the pCode. A couple of Microprose titles have been written with it. Solo Flight and F15 Strike Eagle are to major parts in ABC-compiled BASIC.

In Topic: BASIC compilers

Thu Apr 11, 2019 10:11 AM

Yes, of course. The ABC compiler is a standalone compiler for Atari Basic, to name just one. (Though, to be fair, it is not really a compiler. It compiles to p-code which is then interpreted by its runtime).

In Topic: DOS, Disks, Density and Sector counts... education question.

Wed Apr 10, 2019 10:51 PM

The extra chip was probably less than $0.50 in quantity even back then.


That is not quite the point... The RAM in the 1050 does not come from RAM chips, but from two 6532 RIOTs with 128 bytes RAM each. For a 256 sector buffer, one would not only require one additional chip, but also a complete re-layout of the PCB.