Suitable for a home control system
If you can beat it at tic tac toe when you want the heating turning down.
If you have a yearning for the days when “modem” meant something you attached to the telephone with an acoustic coupler, and dreamed that you too could take over NORAD's machines to launch a war, the “microcomputer” from the movie WarGames is for sale. Actually, it's for sale for the second time: Thomas “Todd” Fischer of IMSAI …
Sadly, I sold it. I recall translating the opcodes for my first few programs into hex numbers by hand. Then mentally translating those hex bytes into binary so that I could key them into the machine using the front paddle switches, toggling examine/deposit. Things got easier with the addition of a Casette Tape interface card from Tarbell Inc. Later additions included keyboard, monitor, floppy disks and Gary Kildall's CP/M.
I am now retired, and apparently too old to know anything about computers or software. Or so I'm told.
I picked up several of them during the early 1980s along with a couple of Altairs. Typically I would find them on sale at ham radio fairs, after Apple II, Commodore and then early model IBMs had displaced them from whatever function the DXers used them for. I had a lot of fun developing the BIOS for the various S100 peripheral cards I could find, preferably CompuPro. Eventually they were both outfitted with 40 MB hard disks.
Oh the joys of sorting out S100 termination problems!
Unfortunately all that stuff was binned 5 or 6 years ago during a move.
" I could key them into the machine using the front paddle switches, toggling examine/deposit. " Once spent an entertaining afternoon doing the same with an ICL 1900 - the switches - 24 of them - were on the 'engineer's box' attached by a a cable to a multi-pin socket on the mainframe.
I've done lot of programming on this system in a Raman spectroscopy Chemistry research lab. It had 48 KB of RAM and 2 SSSD 5,25" floppy. In the end, it was running the spectrograph, controling temperature of the sample, doing data acquisition and displaying the spectra in real time... and interfacing with the IBM Mainframe to transfert data, impersonnating an APL terminal... You knew what section of the program was running just checking the LED display panel.
That was quite a tool when I left in 1982. Been told it was just trash in the end... Too bad.
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