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Re: IPS for IBM-PC? (Was: AO-40 Telemetry News.. IHU-Keps??)

"Tom Clark (W3IWI)" wrote:
> Douglas KA2UPW asked
> > Is there an IPS port to, perhaps, the 8080 or 8085 ?
> > (And, yes, I do have an 8085 computer in my basement.)
> The answer WAS yes. I say WAS because I doubt that it can be reconstructed.
> A disk-based version of IPS for the generic Altair/IMSAI S100 machines was done
> by Ron Dunbar, W0PN with help from John DuBois, W1HDX and me back in ~1980. The
> disk system we used was by Northstar...

Ah, nostalgia. I have *two* Z80 machines in my basement and both have FORTH
interpterers; I hand-keyed in the 14k of object code of the FigFORTH CP/M
interpreter into my TDL Zitan (saving it as a 1200 baud audio signal on a
casette tape, no less) and later transmitted the binary over a serial link to my
(then shiny-new) Osborne/I.

Threaded interpreters were an astoundingly powerful and efficient technology in
their day...the best way to squeeze every ounce of performance and flexibility
out of narrow processors with small memories. I wouldn't be surprised to
discover TILs under the hood of things like the PIC or the Basic Stamp today...

But with Java technology now showing up inside finger rings, ID cards and
iButtons, the time of FORTH software technology may be passing. It's sobering to
think that FORTH is now in it's third decade. Nonetheless, the Java virtual
machine owes a significant archtectural debt to TIL technology.

 73 de Maggie K3XS

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