Sunday, May 13, 2007

5/13/07 The Sunday CoCoist

The Sunday CoCoist
May 13th, 2007

Shall The CoCo C?

Chris Lamont has updated his CoCo page to include a 6809/6309 based disassembler. His work is a step toward building a C/C++ compiler for the CoCo 3, as reported earlier. Also included are his thoughts on the project, pointing out that the compiler would most likely be a C with some C++ like features. Also as reported, this is all way over my head. heh! But it's also terribly exciting. To see just how far over my head, check out this thread on's message forums.

Besides the technical details, however, the development Chris is doing is hugely significant. For a lot of CoCoists, yours truly included, being able to punch out some C++ code easily, in say Visual Studio, would be a massive boon. Many potential CoCo programmers wouldn't even need to learn a new language. Having a modern C++ compiler would also lower the learning curve for many other programmers, at least a lot less than learning assembly. And plenty of applications and games could be ported to the CoCo much easier. The amount of quality software for the CoCo would explode!

Keep your fingers crossed and send extra brain cycles Mr. Lamont's way.

V.R. CoCo Reality

Yup, more on the V.R. CoCo 4. Mainly because the more I hear about it, the better it sounds. Steve Bjork posted a "back on track" message to the message board that goes a long way toward solidifying, in my mind at least, what this is all about. He also took time to answer some specific questions. As mentioned last time, I'm really interested in a new CoCo 3. Or rather, a way to build an old one. As Steve mentions in his post, eventually these old machines aren't going to work anymore. Vintage disks and disk drives, and the CoCo 3 hardware itself, are already past their working life span (about 20 years). The electronics in a well maintained CoCo 3 could last quite a bit longer, of course. But eventually...

So having a CoCo 3 replacement that uses modern components is a pretty good idea. The V.R. CoCo project's idea is: Why not upgrade it a bit while we're at it? Why not build it around an extensible system as well? Sounds like a good plan, actually. Read the threads and see what you think. It should be interesting to see how it develops.

Download of the Week

This week I'm going to give some snaps to the CoCo's little brother, the MC-10. Our link will point us to Charlie's MC-10 Files and Links. The site includes fun programs for the 10er by chazbeenhad, as well as an amazing Pac Man clone by Greg Dionne. Snag an MC-10 emulator while you're there. Did you know that there's a voice synthesizer and an Extended BASIC for the MC-10? Well, follow the links at this site and it shall be so. :)

Tune In & Stay Tuned!

Angel's Luck,

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