INMC 80 News


September 1980 – January 1981, Issue 2

Page 41 of 59

The compiler contains the run time support routines, which reside from 2D63H to 318AH, and a table of the various addresses for these routines is stored at 318BH to 3200H. It would be possible to move these routines into EPROM, having made any necessary changes to addresses, and to change the position of the address table – I’ll have a go in about a months time.

The compiler supports only Pascal reserved words in capitals, which I feel to be a pity, as the program is harder to read. It has a number of extensions to “Standard” Pascal such as “CALL” to call a machine language routine at a specified address – “MEM[I]” to access the value of the byte stored at I, and also​to store a byte at that address, and an “ELSE” addition to the “ CASE” statement.

Using a % sign indicates that the number following is in HEX or is to be printed in HEX, and a " indicates that the ASCII character having that value is to be printed. These are departures from standard Pascal, and as such ought probably to be frowned upon, but I feel that they have been introduced with some justification. After all, on a micro computer, the ability to specify addresses in HEX is something we all take for granted – it’s the way addresses come ! Basic please copy ! – and the MEM[I] is the equivalent of the Basic PEEK and POKE.

This is a brief description of the compiler, after about a week of fiddling with it. I would like to run the BENCHMARK programs on it to give a comparison with Basic, but that hasn’t been possible due to the indisposition of my Nascom, and its subsequent hospitalisation in Nascom’s repair dept.

The parentage of the compiler would appear to be the Yuen and Chung TINY PASCAL published in BYTE. It offers one considerable advantage over that implementation – SPEED! and MEMORY. The Chung and Yuen takes about 16K of memory for the first pass, plus whatever the source program takes up, and about 9k for the second pass, plus whatever the object program takes up, in addition to the basic interpreter. Because it is interpreted, it is very slow. The INTEGER PASCAL takes up about 10K (for both passes) and the source buffer, and the object code space, but is very much faster to compile.

The documentation is some 14 leaves of typescript, describing briefly the various commands, and giving syntax diagrams, a sample program and a Hex listing. It could do with rewriting and considerable extension and elaboration. It would also be a good idea if there were given a source listing for the runtime routines, and instructions on how to relocate them to allow them to be blown in EPROM. This would obviate having to load a compiled code from tape at an address – say 8000H, – and the runtime routines at 2D63H to 318H. The other problem with this compiler is that it doesn’t allow you to use certain areas – for example 1000H to 3200H, or the location of the source buffer, to store the object code it creates – and it is not possible to place the object code on tape, and then reload it after you have finished with the compiler.

Conclusions: An interesting if rather expensive introduction to Pascal, which could do with attention to a few points – tidy up the editor and extend the documentation in particular.

Implemented are the following


FUNCTION ....​(....,;…;
BEGIN …:=…

Integer arithmetic operations are available but with no precedence ordering – strictly left to right evaluation.

Page 41 of 59