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About D-Type

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  1. A quick question...how long does the binary transfer take, say for an 8k file? Back in the day when I was using a Dataman S4, I recall it taking about 10 seconds for a good chunk of a 32k EPROM. I don't use a Vectrex emulator for development, I work only on physical hardware, so this is pretty important for the edit-compile-download-test cycle that I use.
  2. That's a really useful guide, thanks for posting!
  3. D-Type

    Vectrex SD Cart?

    Hi Richard, I already have a VecMulti, so I don't need to order another. However, I would like to say Thanks! for jumping back into the community for a while to make some more carts so people can run homebrew. I'm sure it will help keep the community alive. Be sure to promote the usage of the device as an easy development solution, I haven't tried mine like this yet, but it's got to be faster than burning EPROMs!
  4. D-Type


    So the question, then, is whether it's better than RnS? As the latter is native 6809, albeit without a dedicated Vector generator, possibly it could be better than the original 6502 game. As I'm on holiday now, I can't test, but what do others think?
  5. So I finally, got round to speed testing FIND on the Vectrex Camel Forth: There are roughly 250 words in my Vectrex dictionary. This was with a phone stopwatch, so +/- 0.2 seconds, plus the result was pushed out to a 921600 baud terminal.. Entering 50 numbers onto the stack from 0 to 9 = 4.84 seconds or 0.96 for 10 numbers. Including/excluding 0 1 2 3 4 makes no difference, so I presume they're not defined as constants. (I had a quick look and couldn't find them.) However, FIND is not in code, it's defined as: : FIND \ c-addr -- c-addr 0/1/-1 not found/immed/normal LATEST @ BEGIN \ -- a nfa 2DUP C@ BF AND SWAP C@ \ -- a nfa n1 n2 = IF 2DUP CHAR+ SWAP DUP CHAR+ SWAP C@ S= ELSE 1 THEN DUP IF DROP NFA>LFA @ DUP THEN 0= UNTIL \ -- a nfa OR a 0 DUP IF \ if found, check immed status NIP DUP NFA>CFA \ -- nfa xt SWAP IMMED? 0= 1 OR THEN ; 6809 FTW!
  6. FIND is only used when compiling, correct? If yes, I guess using a cross compiler on a PC almost exclusively, which compiles my 5k binary in a couple of seconds, means this doesn't really make a lot of difference to me. I'm still interested, though, to try the 1 2 3...9 10 Enter test the see how fast the Vectrex 6809 does it. When I'm back from holiday...
  7. At some point in my Vectrex 6809 Camel Forth adventure, I'm going to need these optimisations, thanks for posting. Originally, Vectrex carts were 4k, later ones were 8k. More recent homebrew carts have been up to 64k via simple 32k bank switching. Memory size isn't a problem any more, but program speed always is. The Vectrex runs at 1.5MHz and so to get a flicker-free 50Hz screen update you need to get each update done in 30,000 cycles. There are no frame buffers or separate vector generator hardware available, it's all got to be done in real time by the 6809!
  8. Actually something I forgot to mention, I once owned a TI-99/4A. I can't remember where I got it from, but my eBay auction text from Jan 2002 when I listed it said "This is an auction for a Texas Instruments TI99/4A computer main unit only. I have no power supply or other leads so I do not know if it works." No wonder I can't really remember much about it, except it seemed really nicely made. I'm a bit sad now that I didn't stick it in a box in the garage for later!
  9. Ah yes...actually I read your release notes etc. perhaps 4 or 5 weeks back, then I went on holiday for a week and forgot everything about it :-) My memory now of what I read is that you compiled (assembled?) the primitives and put that onto the '99 and then loaded the rest of Forth and any extensions using the '99 to compile. When you've got access to disk/flash, I guess that gives you a nice usable system to do that. My CamelForth is running on 6809 and Brad R's "Chromium" cross-compiler is quite complete, so I'm compiling everything on the PC. As the target is the Vectrex with it's vector monitor and joystick, there is no keyboard or character-based display, and <1k of usable RAM, so compiling on the Vectrex is a non-starter without hardware mods. I do have a serial port/terminal added to mine for interactive testing, but a ~700 byte dictionary has some limitations! My aim is to allow creation new cartridge programs/games by other developers, so hardware changes can only be minimal, thus PC is the IDE. There are some great emulators for the Vectrex with build-in debuggers and one has a full IDE for assembly language development, but it still works quite nicely with the output from the Chromium compiler. With some help from the Forth community, I have Camel Forth 6809 Chromium compiler now running on Gforth instead of F83 and with plain text files instead of block files, I saw this as mandatory to get any new users. One day I'll learn how to use Github... I'm new to the TI processors,a quick look shows the 430 to be similar to the '99 processor, but with more capability, so it makes perfect sense to port 430 Camel Forth to the '99. It looks like you've put a lot of effort into your Forth, just like the other two Forths for the TI, they all look excellent. I've really enjoyed reading about them and the '99 in general, especially after learning so much about the machine on the Floppy Days series of '99 podcasts. I owe it to myself to download Classic99 and give'em a go!
  10. So now there's 3 Forth systems for the TI? I assume this one is based on Brad's Camel Forth? But, by the look of it, you're not cross compiling from a PC? I'm also using Brad's Camel Forth, but the 6809 variant and using his Chromium cross compiler. Target is the Vectrex, probably a lot less work than you need to put it as it has the correct processor!
  11. Make sure your on/off switch is working e.g. by hard wiring it to on. But you knew that already
  12. I didn't. The unit powers up after 5 minutes once the switch has made contact and now I just leave the switch turned on. There are some step by step guides on the web that show you inside the switch for cleaning, here's one: https://circuit-board.de/forum/index.php/Thread/25374-Die-Vectrex-Kur-Kondensatoren-richtig-tauschen-weg-mit-dem-Brummen-Tipps-Tricks/
  13. Mine also had a 5 minute monitor switch on delay. If I turned it off then back on again, sometimes it would come up quick, sometimes slow. It was the power switch, it needs cleaning. Now I just leave it on all the time and unplug from the wall socket. I'll fix it properly one day...
  14. Is the number that's being shared by buyers the reservation number (that could have been given ahead of release) or the actual paid up and shipped out product total? Hopefully it's the latter as I think it's a great potential audience for a grade A release and quite motivating for other potential developers and others in the supply chain.
  15. https://m.facebook.com/groups/1060033634089063?view=permalink&id=1522544717837950 Not sure if you can get to that link but there's a guy on Facebook who has made a PCB Vectrex to run an vector monitor that he's made from scratch. The group is called "Vectrex, XY and Vector monitors The technical side", the guy's name is Fred Konopaska. It's not the same shape as the real thing, but that's probably a good thing for your use. Maybe he'll share this layouts with you.
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