Linked by killermike on Wed 18th Apr 2007 10:07 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems In this article, I'm going to explore the idea that the 8 bit home computer not only had a great deal to offer the prehistoric early-humans of 1985 but that it may also have a place in the modern world; perhaps, there is something that we can learn from it. Having identified the laudable, worthwhile elements of this class of machine, I'm going to make some suggestions towards a scheme that would embody these characteristics in the form of a machine that would have a place within the modern world.
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bits
by philicorda on Wed 18th Apr 2007 13:27 UTC
philicorda
Member since:
2005-12-31

"Compare this to the experience of a person using an an 8bit micro computer: On such a machine, launching a program might consist of switching the machine on with the appropriate cartridge inserted, or pressing a key combination with the right software tape in the tape drive."

My 8bit was a Morrow Designs "Micro Decision", with a 4Mhz Z80, 64KB of ram and floppy and hard drives.
It ran a special multiuser version of CPM, and could run three WYSE character terminals at once!

I'm saying that to make the point that there is nothing intrinsically simple about 8bit. Make a new 8bit computer with lots of memory and people will add multitasking OS, GUI, drivers, H264 playback ;) , and it will be no 'simpler' than any other.

What I would like to see is a *very* low power portable 8bit with a black and white lcd screen, a bit like the Tandy 100. The Tandy had 20 hours battery life and was very reliable. I'd like to see how efficient a computer built with the same simplicity and low clock speed would be today. Perhaps a modern version would have a battery life in the order of weeks....

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