Overdue Introduction | PCSPECIALIST

Overdue Introduction

Bigfoot

VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
Inspired by @NoddyPirate, or whatever his name is now, I have decided to introduce myself after about 6 months of membership this time around. I have recently received my third PCS machine (2 desktops and 1 laptop), following on from several prebuilt machines from the larger manufacturers.

I am an expat, having migrated from England to Scotland over 20 years ago for work. My name reflects that I have quite big feet and that I look a bit like a Sasquatch, Yeti or Wookiee. Early in my career I spent many hours tinkering with, building and programming microprocessor based systems. This included designing and building PSUs, and designing, prototyping and creating the circuit boards. This was all with MOS 6500 series, Motorola 6800 series, Intel 8080 & 8085 and Zilog Z80 processors using machine language, some hand assembled. I became quite adept in binary, octal and hexadecimal. After this I moved to IBM PCs with twin 5.25” DSHD floppy drives and eventually up to 1MB of RAM. I spent lots of time messing around with hardware and software. I also graduated to FORTRAN, BASIC and C. If you understand all that, you are probably as least as old as me.

Now, I don’t get my hands on so much. I like to help others, but know my limitations and won’t start advising someone when I don’t have good enough knowledge of the subject. I have found this forum very helpful, especially @Scott for the build I ended up with.
 

Scott

Behold The Ford Mondeo
Moderator
A belated welcome indeed :D

I learned a bit of basic back in the 80s when I was 5. Made a spider run across the screen with my ZX Spectrum handbook :ROFLMAO:

Started me on a slippery slope too.
 

SpyderTracks

Bingo Bango Orchestrator
Moderator
Inspired by @NoddyPirate, or whatever his name is now, I have decided to introduce myself after about 6 months of membership this time around. I have recently received my third PCS machine (2 desktops and 1 laptop), following on from several prebuilt machines from the larger manufacturers.

I am an expat, having migrated from England to Scotland over 20 years ago for work. My name reflects that I have quite big feet and that I look a bit like a Sasquatch, Yeti or Wookiee. Early in my career I spent many hours tinkering with, building and programming microprocessor based systems. This included designing and building PSUs, and designing, prototyping and creating the circuit boards. This was all with MOS 6500 series, Motorola 6800 series, Intel 8080 & 8085 and Zilog Z80 processors using machine language, some hand assembled. I became quite adept in binary, octal and hexadecimal. After this I moved to IBM PCs with twin 5.25” DSHD floppy drives and eventually up to 1MB of RAM. I spent lots of time messing around with hardware and software. I also graduated to FORTRAN, BASIC and C. If you understand all that, you are probably as least as old as me.

Now, I don’t get my hands on so much. I like to help others, but know my limitations and won’t start advising someone when I don’t have good enough knowledge of the subject. I have found this forum very helpful, especially @Scott for the build I ended up with.
Welcome, very welcome!
 

NoddyPirate

VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
Inspired by @NoddyPirate, or whatever his name is now, I have decided to introduce myself after about 6 months of membership this time around. I have recently received my third PCS machine (2 desktops and 1 laptop), following on from several prebuilt machines from the larger manufacturers.

I am an expat, having migrated from England to Scotland over 20 years ago for work. My name reflects that I have quite big feet and that I look a bit like a Sasquatch, Yeti or Wookiee. Early in my career I spent many hours tinkering with, building and programming microprocessor based systems. This included designing and building PSUs, and designing, prototyping and creating the circuit boards. This was all with MOS 6500 series, Motorola 6800 series, Intel 8080 & 8085 and Zilog Z80 processors using machine language, some hand assembled. I became quite adept in binary, octal and hexadecimal. After this I moved to IBM PCs with twin 5.25” DSHD floppy drives and eventually up to 1MB of RAM. I spent lots of time messing around with hardware and software. I also graduated to FORTRAN, BASIC and C. If you understand all that, you are probably as least as old as me.

Now, I don’t get my hands on so much. I like to help others, but know my limitations and won’t start advising someone when I don’t have good enough knowledge of the subject. I have found this forum very helpful, especially @Scott for the build I ended up with.
What an interesting background Mr @Bigfoot !!! How nice to finally get some detail on the person behind the name. I didn't want to say previously but the image I had of you in my minds eye seems to have been quite accurate! :D :D

It's so interesting to see the words "1MB of RAM" on a screen! We had an Amiga 500 back in the day - what an amazing machine that was - I spent hours playing with AMOS the Creator back then! But I remeber when my Dad splashed out on a huge upgrade on the RAM to bring it from 512k to a full 1MB. Would any youngsters of today understand that I wonder? :)

Belated welcome from someone much less experienced that you in every conceivable way!
 

Scott

Behold The Ford Mondeo
Moderator
What an interesting background Mr @Bigfoot !!! How nice to finally get some detail on the person behind the name. I didn't want to say previously but the image I had of you in my minds eye seems to have been quite accurate! :D :D

It's so interesting to see the words "1MB of RAM" on a screen! We had an Amiga 500 back in the day - what an amazing machine that was - I spent hours playing with AMOS the Creator back then! But I remeber when my Dad splashed out on a huge upgrade on the RAM to bring it from 512k to a full 1MB. Would any youngsters of today understand that I wonder? :)

Belated welcome from someone much less experienced that you in every conceivable way!

You might like this....

 

NoddyPirate

VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
You might like this....

Happy memories! Geoff Crammonds Formula One Grand Prix helped me pass many happy hours. And who could forget Lemmings for that matter? (Even if it wasn’t an Amiga original I think? 🤔)

‘OH NO!’ (POP!)
 

Scott

Behold The Ford Mondeo
Moderator
Happy memories! Geoff Crammonds Formula One Grand Prix helped me pass many happy hours. And who could forget Lemmings for that matter? (Even if it wasn’t an Amiga original I think? 🤔)

‘OH NO!’ (POP!)

Know the game well. Scottish company that made it, I remember reading about it. Definitely released under the Amiga though, on the 500 I believe as part of the cartoon classics pack. I remember Worms being discussed on, I think Bad Influence, when it was on early release.
 

NoddyPirate

VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
Know the game well. Scottish company that made it, I remember reading about it. Definitely released under the Amiga though, on the 500 I believe as part of the cartoon classics pack. I remember Worms being discussed on, I think Bad Influence, when it was on early release.
OMG yes! Worms was so much fun! Various editions with varying levels of weaponry and violence as I remember....
 

NoddyPirate

VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
Early in my career I spent many hours tinkering with, building and programming microprocessor based systems. This included designing and building PSUs, and designing, prototyping and creating the circuit boards.
Have to ask sir - do you find that novelty has worn off? Or do you still tinker at home with any personal projects and such like? Your skills strike me as something more of a vocation than a job in many ways....
 

Martinr36

MOST VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
A long overdue welcome, I recognise some of those terms even though i failed my computer studies CSE, my only attempts at programming were done with cards and a "B" grade pencil
 

ubuysa

The BSOD Doctor
Moderator
A long overdue welcome, I recognise some of those terms even though i failed my computer studies CSE, my only attempts at programming were done with cards and a "B" grade pencil
Ah, punched cards. I remember working with those in the dim and distant past.

Here's a true story for you....

An old IBM punched card will (still) fit nicely into a man's shirt pocket. Why would that be? Well US currency used to be that size and shirt pcokets were made so that you could put the odd few dollar bills in them. At some stage (I don't remember when) the US Federal Reserve decided to reduce the size of the US banknotes, presumably to reduce printing and paper costs. The result of that was that they had thousands and thousands of banknote trays for the old currency that they no longer needed. The story goes that Herman Hollerith, who founded the company that would become IBM, bought up all the trays and designed his punched card machines to use cards of exactly that size. And that's why a punched card will fit nicely into your shirt pocket. :cool:

Incidentally, that's why the old console screens were 80 x 24 characters. A punched card was 80 x 12 characters so not much re-coding was needed to output to an 80 x 24 screen....
 

Bigfoot

VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
Have to ask sir - do you find that novelty has worn off? Or do you still tinker at home with any personal projects and such like? Your skills strike me as something more of a vocation than a job in many ways....
I haven’t really had time for tinkering with electronics for a long time and an now badly out of practice. Work, home life, hillwalking and photography all intervened.
 

Bigfoot

VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
What an interesting background Mr @Bigfoot !!! How nice to finally get some detail on the person behind the name. I didn't want to say previously but the image I had of you in my minds eye seems to have been quite accurate! :D :D

It's so interesting to see the words "1MB of RAM" on a screen! We had an Amiga 500 back in the day - what an amazing machine that was - I spent hours playing with AMOS the Creator back then! But I remeber when my Dad splashed out on a huge upgrade on the RAM to bring it from 512k to a full 1MB. Would any youngsters of today understand that I wonder? :)

Belated welcome from someone much less experienced that you in every conceivable way!
Are you saying I am old? 😮😮😮 The machines with 1MB of RAM had a workaround to get over the 640kB limit of DOS.
 

Bigfoot

VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
Programming in those days could be hazardous. In some machines I/O and memory occupied the same address space and memory has accessed directly. Without care it was possible to mistakenly reset the parameters of hardware with potentially expensive impacts. I once was programming on an IBM PC clone, writing directly to the hardware as using the OS functions was too slow. On the first trial run of the software there was a loud bang and smoke started pouring out of the computer. It later turned out that it wasn’t my fault. During roadworks in the street outside my office, one of the workmen managed to sever the power line with a digger. This caused a voltage spike that destroyed an electrolytic capacitor. These were sensitive beasts and didn’t like over voltage and particularly disliked having their polarity reversed. One of my colleagues found out the difference between rms and peak voltage the hard way when building a power supply containing such capacitor. Let’s just say it was messy.
 

AgentCooper

Gravity Always Wins
Moderator
Programming in those days could be hazardous. In some machines I/O and memory occupied the same address space and memory has accessed directly. Without care it was possible to mistakenly reset the parameters of hardware with potentially expensive impacts. I once was programming on an IBM PC clone, writing directly to the hardware as using the OS functions was too slow. On the first trial run of the software there was a loud bang and smoke started pouring out of the computer. It later turned out that it wasn’t my fault. During roadworks in the street outside my office, one of the workmen managed to sever the power line with a digger. This caused a voltage spike that destroyed an electrolytic capacitor. These were sensitive beasts and didn’t like over voltage and particularly disliked having their polarity reversed. One of my colleagues found out the difference between rms and peak voltage the hard way when building a power supply containing such capacitor. Let’s just say it was messy.
Good grief! Were the results... explosive?
 

NoddyPirate

VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
Programming in those days could be hazardous. In some machines I/O and memory occupied the same address space and memory has accessed directly. Without care it was possible to mistakenly reset the parameters of hardware with potentially expensive impacts. I once was programming on an IBM PC clone, writing directly to the hardware as using the OS functions was too slow. On the first trial run of the software there was a loud bang and smoke started pouring out of the computer. It later turned out that it wasn’t my fault. During roadworks in the street outside my office, one of the workmen managed to sever the power line with a digger. This caused a voltage spike that destroyed an electrolytic capacitor. These were sensitive beasts and didn’t like over voltage and particularly disliked having their polarity reversed. One of my colleagues found out the difference between rms and peak voltage the hard way when building a power supply containing such capacitor. Let’s just say it was messy.
The idea of capacitors going bang really does scare me I must say! A surprisingly large amount of energy can be hiding in those things.
 
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