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Integration Thread (Hardware & Software Playing Nice Together)

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If you have a piece or pieces of hardware and/or software you are trying to get to play nicely together with another item to improve your personal experience, but are not 100% ultra-positive of where exactly you should post your question, and do not want to mistakenly "threadcrap" in someone else's domain, please feel free to post your questions here.  This topic is open to everyone for everything, no matter what your level of experience is.  In this thread we'll go where it takes us, with no limitations to what is allowed.

 

Others may have already experienced the same issues you are having and may be willing to help out other TI'ers in need.  Take note though, since this is essentially a "free-for-all topic", and not specific to one piece of hardware or software it may not get direct support from the originators of the specific piece of hardware or software you are inquiring about.

 

Also, if you've come up with a creative item or method to do an end run around built-in limitations of some hardware or software, please share your discovery!  Pushing the envelope of what is possible is always a fun thing!

 

 

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For openers...

 

I know a few people had some issues in the past loading and running the EA/5 version of Stuart's Internet Browser using anything other than the Editor/Assembler module.  Trying to load web94 with 4A/DOS, or even Force Command could not be accomplished.  Well, since Stuarts Internet Browser requires all it's files in a specific folder to operate properly, the attached file, (put in your TIPI root directory) will allow you to easily execute the program.

 

Currently Stuart's Internet browser does not have an EXIT button (like FCTN 😃, but if you are running this program off of a FG99, pressing the right-hand button on the FinalGROM will exit from the program and drop you instantly back into Force Command.

 

Simply drop this file in your TIPI's root directory, and type: LOAD WEB94

WEB94

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OK,  I'll give this a shot.  (Sorry for the length of this post.)

 

One of the best features of the TIPI interface and its underlying code is its ability to actually load and run files directly from the "whtech.com" ftp site.

If a user defines a 'URIx' (in my case it is 'URI2') as "http://ftp.whtech.com/TIPI/"

A simple OLD.URI2.CATALOG or RUN "URI2.CATALOG" will load a BASIC program into Memory (and in the 2nd example run it).

a CALL TIPI(UR2.EDIT40) will execute Fred's EDIT40.

This is fast and actually easier to remember than "what disk or folder is that file in?". (and it is brilliant!)

 

It would be great if this process could be extended!

 

As I've stated in other posts, the  'FTP' command in "Force Command" (my favorite TI software) can do most of what I am proposing. However at this time I believe that it requires a user owns FinalGrom99 or compatible cart.  With that said, it may not meet all user's needs in that you have to use a number of extra steps:

  1. Launch "Force Command"
  2. Run FTP
  3. Open the 'ftp.whtech.com' site 
  4. log on (I can never spell ananyoumus, animalous, anonymous!).
  5. Wait for a large amount of data to scroll by.  I absolutely appreciate Don's and Whtech's contribution to our TI Community and always read the information!
  6. Change to the TIPI directory.  Other folders will work as well but this TIPI specific.
  7. Get a directory of the folder (I always forget to use 'dir /w' (If I do, then the returned stuff is full of information that is hard to read on my stock TI!)
  8. Opps!  Forgot to set to set my local transfer directory.
  9. Get the the file.
  10. Exit ftp.
  11. At that point I can 'load' or execute it ('xb').  (Even after in essence complaining about of this, It is still fantastic to be able actually do this!)

Proposal:

I know that this is probably an imposition on our key forum members.  I hate to do this but am asking?

  1. Put all compatible files ('gold' versions are best but betas or fine as well) from the "TIPI enabled software listing" into TIPI folder @ 'ftp.whtech.com'. If possible use 2 char suffixes to differentiate how to execute them. Ex.: "/X" etc.  Files may need to be vetted/tested.
  2. Non-executable files can be left as compressed zip or arc, etc. and stored in sub folders.
  3. Develop a TI compatible DV/80 index file that provides an up to date index has the filename, filetype, and optional description.   Example line item:  "DIRW", "ExBASIC", "TIPI compatible CATALOG program"
  4. Load and directly execute the file using the 2 commands above or EA (EA3 or EA5) if needed.

I would be happy to try to adapt or write a small program that reads current index file directory.  Possible other features that may be added in the future program execution, file sorting, search, etc.  Program should be written in the simplest common language (TI BASIC)?

The index reader would be resident in the TIPI folder perhaps named "TINDEX" or similar.  It would be hard coded to read/download the current INDEX file. 

I have considered that this is an unusual usage of an FTP site (Use it like "cloud storage" for old vintage computers!) 

 

Again, this is a "download only" process as Whtech correctly prevents most users from uploads!

 

Thoughts?  (No face slaps please, I am sensitive to pain!)

(Am not responsible for grammatical / spelling errors as I was educated in a state where we are consistently 49th in funding for education.)

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Okay, I came up with a "work around" to accomplish 50% of what I want with Extended BASIC.  So getting into XB is now fairly fast.

Originally I was contemplating a HEX edit of XB's LOAD routine, but if I did that it would break the functionality of FCMDXB.  (Catch 22).

 

1747091130_FailedMethod.thumb.JPG.e96bc1d166200a7ac1518ad8934a9b8a.JPG

 

... BUT Force Command has a nifty little "CALL" command that lets you run a script and stack up commands, so why not exploit that?

Of course, for the "XB" command to work properly, there needs to be a program named involved as well.

So I thought why not have a "one liner dummy program" with a REM statement as a placeholder.

 

So in a subdirectory named "BASIC", I made a program called BAS...

895909081_IMAGE1.thumb.JPG.f833ee06f40fdd180ef51b03340dfa4f.JPG

... all it contains is...

662703518_IMAGE2.JPG.a1e5d8fdf952c0376a223695e155395e.JPG

 

Then, using EDIT80 I created a small DV 80 file for the Force Command "CALL" routine, it's small and named "XB"  all it contains is...

1557294071_IMAGE3.JPG.be9a97c5612456030e0ff02bfea225a9.JPG

 

This is probably the best I can hope for, and it does work, so...

529594372_XBLoad.gif.183df9650141f73889e6e9fa519d1c77.gif

 

Still, getting out of XB to return to Force Command without having to remember and type,  RUN "TIPI.FC.FCMDXB"  each and every time still eludes me.

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The Dummy program idea is good!  

 

For the return, add a couple of lines to your favorite program's listing

Example:

 

98 CALL KEY(0,K,S):: IF S=0 THEN 99  ! Place just before list end.

99  IF K=ASC("X") THEN RUN "TIPI.FC.FCMDXB"   ! Can't remember ASCII for X.

100 END

 

Should work if the listing is not protected.

Check out my TIPI Weather program as an example.

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51 minutes ago, dgrissom said:

Check out my TIPI Weather program as an example.

Vorticon added that routine to his 80 Column F18A version of the program (as you can see from the video imbedded below).

 

 

On a side note, as I was taking the video, that transient exiting issue popped up.

I "believe" it's a timing issue.  It obviously reloaded the FinalGROM Image, otherwise pressing reset would not bring it up, but for some reason it does not seem to execute.

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Posted (edited)

I'll give it my best shot.  Disclaimer:  This is best reviewed/answered by Jedimatt and/or senior_falcon.

With that said, I would believe that the hang might be memory conflict between the 2 pieces of software.

Don't really know but it sounds good!  

Addition of a CALL INIT to clear the routines (or some similar command) may help or it might simply crash the machine.

You might try adding a CALL LINK("G32") just before exiting to FC.  I don't know if this would work at all or not?  Fun to try!

 

230 IF SEG$(Y$,1,1)="Y" THEN 100

235 IF SEG$(Y$,1,1)="X" THEN 245

240 END ! Allow to Exit and adjust code.

245 CALL LINK("G32") ' Kick  the video back to TI standard.

247 CALL INIT

250 RUN "TIPI.FC.FCMDXB" 

 

I hate giving advice as I have don't have a F18 and can't test it.

Edited by dgrissom
Part of my brain was missing when I wrote this. Found most of it!
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Posted (edited)

DV80 File.

Make a desired DV80 file of what you want with what ever you want named BATCH.

(Any command you can type into XB can be done from DV80 file using RXB USER files.)

(You can make a DSK#.LOAD  program but why do that when USER can do exactly that faster without the LOAD program needed.)

 

In RXB menu push comma key for USER and wait for it to load DSK1.BATCH or press the drive you want to run from i.e. 1 to 9 or A to Z or press 0 for WDS1.BATCH

 

Yea I know you do not want to push any keys as that is to much work. Just showing off that a DOS is built into RXB already.

By way RXB USER can restart XB and pick up where it left off in that DV80 USER file, lets see you do that with any other utility in XB without crashing.

 

 

Edited by RXB
additional text
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Sorry Rich, I'm not much interested in having RXB continually shoved in my face either, especially when it has NOTHING to do with what I'm currently trying to accomplish with Force Command and TI Extended BASIC.  You've been doing this now with RXB for quite literally years now.  People have given you hints over the years, tried humor and even cartoons to try to get the message across, nothing seems to have worked, so sorry I came out so bluntly, but dang dude.  I really hate acting like a complete and utter tool, but I've had enough.  Please don't bother replying to my rudeness, I'm taking a few days off from AtariAge, it's not fun right now.

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Posted (edited)

 

And what about your massive posting threads/topcis here for every small question or "idea" ?

 

Or also your eternal and recurring questions in any thread when it comes to somehow bending or adapting things

for your personal "needs", i.e. a mass of posts because that you just don't have to press any key when switching the machine on ?

And every day, you seem to love, hate, favorize and push another thing...

 

RXB loves and knows his (brilliant) product very well, of course, and that´s it.

 

If you don´t like things, my advise is just to scroll ahead...

 

 

Edited by Schmitzi
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We need some chill in here.

 

 

As for a silly idea for integration--  If you have one of those USB (or PS2) keyboard mods installed, dropping in a barcode scanner is just as easy as plugging the silly thing in.

 

There are several on Ebay that require no drivers at all, and just send keyboard scancodes for what they have read in, down the line like they were keystrokes.  It would be possible to do the "extended basic program as page of barcodes" thing this way, or even "arcane console fu as barcode" thing.

 

 

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Those keyboard wedge scanners work quite well, too, I had to write some software to support them back in the day :)

 

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@BJGuillot demonstrated this on a 4A using a QR code scanner, including demonstration of his QR code generator. 

 

 

At Fest West 2016 - He borrowed my USB keyboard enabled console, plugged in his scanner wand, and demonstrated reading into the TI the data from the QR code that his console displayed. 

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I was thinking more 1D barcodes that can be grabbed with a linear scanner actually...  QR needs a gun.

 

There are "unloved" linear scanners that can be put in-line with a PS2 keyboard that would be perfect for this, that can be had very cheaply from ebay.

 

Like this butt-ugly cuecat.

 

It plugs into the PS2 port, and the PS2 keyboard plugs into the other part of the pigtail. Thus your PS2 mod could drive both without any issue, and you could grab the thing and scan cardstock emblazoned with your 1D barcodes (that thing knows how to read a few dozen kinds), which would let you put in basic programs fast, or fire off console-fu very fast.

 

There's simple fonts that can be used to produce the barcodes with, using basically any word processor.

https://www.dafont.com/barcode-font.font

 

 

Edited by wierd_w
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I actually have a cuecat laying around in one of my boxes of old pc stuff.

Don't have the keyboard mod on my TI yet though.

Makes me want to create a simple game in TI BASIC, and sell it as a deck of barcode cards.

One side of the cards would have barcodes and a identifier on the top border ("#0001" , "#0002" etc).

The reverse sides, when put together in a square layout like a puzzle, would display the BASIC listing that you could type in.

The deck box would be fashioned to look like a miniaturized TI Solid State Software module box. (Or in this case, "Card State Software")

Edited by jrhodes
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On 8/1/2020 at 10:56 PM, jedimatt42 said:

At Fest West 2016 - He borrowed my USB keyboard enabled console, plugged in his scanner wand, and demonstrated reading into the TI the data from the QR code that his console displayed. 

 

A re-run of his 2016 Fest West presentation...

 

 

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On 8/2/2020 at 6:34 AM, jrhodes said:

I actually have a cuecat laying around in one of my boxes of old pc stuff.

Don't have the keyboard mod on my TI yet though.

Makes me want to create a simple game in TI BASIC, and sell it as a deck of barcode cards.

One side of the cards would have barcodes and a identifier on the top border ("#0001" , "#0002" etc).

The reverse sides, when put together in a square layout like a puzzle, would display the BASIC listing that you could type in.

The deck box would be fashioned to look like a miniaturized TI Solid State Software module box. (Or in this case, "Card State Software")

CueCat needs a little attitude adjustment, because the creator wanted the things to only work with their software. However, said adjustment is simple. You just need to run +5v from one of the listed pins, and run it to the listed thru-hole. Bob's your uncle. After doing that, the cuecat spits out unencoded barcodes.

 

source:

http://www.cexx.org/cuecat.htm#decode

 

with this supplied image for sources of +5v, and the destination thruhole cited.

confuse-a-cat-2.gif

 

Possibly with this errata, if you have a newer board.

http://www.cexx.org/ccupd.htm

 

Edited by wierd_w
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