“SORTING IT OUT” SORTED OUT
(see last issue)
Line 100 should read as follows:
100 IF A(I)<X THEN I=I+1:G0T0 100.
I can think of no reason why it should not be possible to connect a Nascom to one of
the soon-to-be-legal Open Channel radios. If there is no reason (experts, please
advise!) which channel shall we grab (sorry, allocate) to ourselves?
ISN’T BASIC WONDERFUL ? SECTION
Before poor Marvin became ill, I managed, with the talent I so often display, to
produce an error message from the BASIC that doesn’t appear anywhere in the
documentation; it was an MO error. (Ed. Missing Operand.) There’s a whole new field
here, which goes far beyond unknown opcodes – FS error, for instance, is Forgot to
Switch on error.
My younger brother, who has an M*14 for sale (Richard Beal could make a Nascom 1-2-14;
or any offers ?) whilst writing the ultimate starship simulation, used an amazing
array, which at one point in the program was accessed as follows:
No error message whatsoever was produced, and I am told that it is obvious what this
does, but I didn’t understand his explanation at all. He tells me that any M*14 owner
would immediately understand the full implications of such a thing with no trouble at
I propose a competition for users of ROM BASIC, to see who can enter the longest line
of BASIC using single (i.e. three at a time !) key entry of reserved words. The line
must make sense, should preferably do something useful, and must produce no error
messages when run. A hint – RESTORE is the longest word you have available, so you’ll
need to use it a lot to win.
LATEST EXPENSIVE ACQUISITIONS.
I bought myself (or rather, Marvin !) an 8 amp power supply, and haven’t seen our
usual postman since he carried it up the hill. Any offers for the now redundant 3 amp
unit? The 8 amp PSU is so heavy, it makes the Blue Oyster Cult look like Tiny Tim (not
a programming language). I suspect that if you put two of these power supplies
together, a black hole would form instantly.
Something to watch out for, which I spotted in time, when you get yours (not if, when.
Computing is the most serious addiction known to mankind and Heloise Fortran). If the
post office drop it on the end with the huge heat sink, the connections to the power
transistors can bend until they touch the casing. The casing will spring back into
shape, but if the thing is switched on in this state, I fear it is more likely to form
a super-nova then a black hole. Look before you plug it in and save money!
Another recent purchase is an EPROM board from the Merseyside Nascom Users Group. This
has eight sockets for 2708’s and one for the BASIC ROM. It works perfectly at 2 MHz,
is delivered fast, and costa 46.00. My only criticism is that it doesn’t have the
connections required between lines 16 and 17, 19 and 20 for the Nasbus, that form the
interrupt daisy chain, but you can easily connect them yourself, or put it at the far
end of the motherboard. I admit it is not as wonderful as the Interface Components
board, which has bells and whistles, but that one does cost more....
I have not been able to test my other new board, an I/O board, due to the ongoing
negative hardware situation. More in another episode, perhaps. In the meantime, would
someone please send me a copy of any pages there may be in their documentation for the
board, with a page number higher than 8.