Scor­pio News


April–June 1987 – Volume 1. Issue 2.

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Now one thing I have found about owning an IBM clone ia that the amount of information which comes with it is minimal (like 10 pages of manual describing, in bad English, what the various links do). I need information, and one place I won’t find it is here! As most of those afore-mentioned ‘mature’ micro users which I know personally are in similar position and already have various breeds of IBM clone (ranging from Ying Tong Tiddie-I-Po nasties, through Amstrad 1512’s to quite good Japanese AT clones) and all suffer from the same lack of information, might not a small section on IBM clones be interesting? After all they share derivatives of the same processor used in the GM888 8088 card and a small (readable) series on 8088/8086 assembler would be very useful, particularly about the segment registers which insist on inventing funny numbers all of their own when I try something other than the most mundane assembler Program.

The inclusion of IBM clones won’t necessarily be popular with the Nascom/​Gemini/​Map purists, and such things might only appeal to myself and a few others, but it might be interesting to find out if the readership has a substantial number of clone owners/​users. Why not a questionnaire in the next issue to find out what the readership wants?

Regards, Dave Hunt, Harrow, Middx.

Partial Defection

Dear Sir,

I wish Scorpio News well and hope that it can find a way of maintaining interest in 8-bit Z80 CP/M technology in the face of severe and ever increasing competition from IBM look-a-like machines. The development of a conversion path for users when they upgrade their home computing systems to that text and data files can be readily passed from from one type of machine to another.

I am obtaining a 16-bit MS-DOS machine but still intend to run a Nascom 2 based CP/M machine into the foreseeable future simply because I have 5 years of experience and understand the system very well when performing specialized tasks. Other users of older microcomputers are probably in a similar situation. I need the large storage capacity of a modern micro, but not many of its more advanced features.

Yours faithfully, Mr A.A Bryan, Cambridge.

80-BUS <–> PC

Dear sir,

Thank you for the first edition of Scorpio News with which I was very impressed. I am looking forward to the complete article on disk formats and if you have in mind an introduction to Pascal (along the lines of the Fortran article), that too would be great.

Having been forced to submit to the dreaded PC to be compatible with other poor unfortunates, I (along with some of your contributors) am of the view that the rest of the world knows not what they have missed. My Nascom and Galaxy systems get much more use simply because they can get through considerably more work in a given time. How about articles where the combination of 80-BUS and PCs can be used to advantage: for example, downloading programs and instructions from a PC to an 80-BUS which looks after various control functions and reports statue back to the PC?

Incidentally, I have done something similar between the Galaxy and Nascom in which the Galaxy boots the Nascom through the serial interface, having first loaded it with a program to fill the NASPEN text space of memory with data sent down the RS232. The Nascom then acts as an editable (using ROM based NASPEN)

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