Saturday, 24 December 2011

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Deny the passenger who wants to get on

Peter Graf emailed the QL User group about his prototype developments in using an SD card in the Microdrive slot.

Really nice to see that moving along and ever so ever so cool :)

Go here for a couple more 

Saturday, 3 December 2011

The first time, second time

I more or less fell over the coding for what I was trying to achieve from my original entry 'The First Time', the all singing all dancing boot program. With respect to the original author, these are the remark statements reproduced here from Dilwyn's site. I don't intend to show the whole program here, but as I add to it I then may.

10000 REMark *****************************
10010 REMark Version: V1.0
10020 REMark Date: 20/Sep/1997
10030 REMark Author: J.D.Mitchell
10040 REMark EMAIL:
10050 REMark Change: 1) Default system vars base is at 160K not 128K
10060 REMark 2) Add change control header
10070 REMark *****************************
10080 REMark Version: 1.1
10090 REMark Date: 20/Sep/1997
10100 REMark Author: J.D.Mitchell
10110 REMark EMAIL:
10120 REMark Change: 1) Use peek(!!addr) etc. when possible
10130 REMark *****************************
10140 REMark Version: 1.2
10150 REMark Date: 28/Nov/1997
10160 REMark Author: J.D.Mitchell
10170 REMark EMAIL:
10180 REMark Change: 1) Corect error in change history
10190 REMark Change: 2) Report QDOS versions as ROM names not versions
10200 REMark *****************************

I can't get no satisfaction

It is frustrating how one methodology takes you to another, then another, then another. What started as one project now is building up to two more. 

Has anyone connected up microdrives QL/Spectrum to another computer/electronic interface other than the QL or Spectrum and got them to work? Is there any documentation for them that would assist such a project.

In the process of a project weening off the QL hardware, such things to go are microdrives in place of 5.25 and 3.5 inch disc drives. However there is still a lot of stuff in lofts/garages that occasionally turn up micro drive tapes and eventually the hardware to put them in will no longer exist. 

So one project that I have been thinking about starting is replacing the microdrives with SD card slots, fortunately MemoryLane computing has done that bit for me. But what to do with the micro drive hardware? throw away? well with a bit of ingenuity maybe put them in their own case. But how to connect them up to the QL? I need some circuit diagrams.

Having lurked on eBay I have recently obtained Spectrum microdrives for a bit of inspiration, and suitable cables to inspect and copy and adapt for the project.

But this got me thinking even more, yes I can connect them up to a Spectrum, yes I can connect them up to a QL but what about connecting them up to a PC or other computer device with say a USB port that is running emulation software. With Qemulator on the PC or the MAC saving via a USB connection to an actual micro drive, how cool would that be? but has it been done, can it be done?

I presume some form of electronic interface converting signals from the micro drive connector to a USB or some other port would be needed plus some form of driver. The first part would be knowing the connections to the micro drive and what controls it plus the signals, where can I obtain that?

Dilwyn's site? Well there is the Technical Manual but that is not relevant enough, the service manual looks a possibility but has PIC file files which I now have to convert. So now I am looking for a PC based PIC to other graphic file converter...