Archive for category: Retrocomputing

The Kim-Uno — a Kim-1 simulator

July 4, 2015 | Arduino, Emulation, My Projects, Retrocomputing | By: Mark VandeWettering

Ken Boak had mentioned on twitter that someone was creating a blinken-lights front end for the simh simulator of the PDP-8, called the PiDP-8, since you can power the entire thing from a Raspberry Pi. Very cool, but not quite available yet. What was available from Oscar is the Kim-Uno, a simulator for the old […]

More musings of computers past: Popular Electronics, the COSMAC ELF

July 27, 2014 | Retrocomputing | By: Mark VandeWettering

My musings about my earliest memories of computers brought me back to 1976 and the appearance of the COSMAC ELF in Popular Electronics. I was only twelve, and probably had only the vaguest understanding of what such a machine could do, or why I might want one, but I remember reading these articles and it […]

Learning the ropes…

July 24, 2014 | Retrocomputing | By: Mark VandeWettering

Over the past few years, I’ve expressed an interest in the AGC, or Apollo Guidance Computer. If you haven’t had the time to look at it, the Wikipedia page is good enough to get a brief overview, but if you want to dig deep, you can find all sorts of information and simulators. I found […]

Best thing at the MakerFaire: a relay computer that calculates square roots…

May 18, 2014 | Retrocomputing | By: Mark VandeWettering

Long time readers here should know that I have a bit of a fascination with strange, retro computing devices. While I haven’t done anything significant in this area myself, I love to see them, and at yesterday’s MakerFaire, I saw Simon’s Relay Calculating Engine. I’ll let Simon explain it to you: My own impressions: it’s […]

Deconstructing the Classic Atari Game: Star Raiders

November 17, 2013 | Computer Graphics, My Projects, Retrocomputing | By: Mark VandeWettering

Gasp, I know. It’s been some time since I posted here. A combination of life and work events have conspired to sap me of my usual exuberant energy for the nerdy, geeky pointless topics that I usually like to post about here. But nerdy, geeky, pointless endeavors do continue (even if at a reduced pace) […]

Chris Fenton’s Amazing Electro/Mechanical computers

June 10, 2013 | 3D printing, Retrocomputing | By: Mark VandeWettering

I remember reading about Chris Fenton’s homebrew Cray, which was impressive enough. It was implemented on a Xilinx Spartan-3E FPGA board, and eventually he got a Cray assembler written. It also is neat, because it looks like a tiny Cray: But I wasn’t too interested in actually building one. But the gods of Internet surfing […]

Resources on the IBM 1401

January 23, 2013 | Retrocomputing | By: Mark VandeWettering

Okay, I was trying to find more information about the IBM 1401, and the bitsavers website again came to the rescue. If you surf over to to their directory of IBM 1401 information, you can find some nifty references. One of the most useful references is 1962 manual Programming the IBM 1401. A somewhat less […]

An IBM 1403 font…

January 23, 2013 | Computer Science, Fonts, Retrocomputing, Typography | By: Mark VandeWettering

A few days ago, I was playing around with my Raspberry Pi, trying to get a new, freshly compiled version of the TOPS-10 7.03 monitor running. I was having some difficulty with it, as it appears that a bug had crept into the code that simulates the DZ11 serial ports as telnet connections, and I […]

On Relay Computers…

January 20, 2012 | electronics, Retrocomputing | By: Mark VandeWettering

I share an interest in old computing technology with several of my friends and readers. An interesting sub-topic within this vast area is the world of computers based upon relays. In the last couple of days, I found cool links to two different relay based computing projects, so I thought I’d pass them along. First […]