MSDOS to/from CoCo disk transfers
I uploaded a package called AS9TOO.ZIP to RTSI's archive (ftp://www.rtsi.com/RSDOS/incoming). This was part of a programming group of utilities found in Compuserve's CoCo Forum libraries and were downloaded almost 9 years ago when I still had a CIS account. AS9TOO has utilities that run in a MSDOS computer and the way they're written dictate that the machine has a 5.25" 40 track capable disk installed as A:. I did not write that code, I merely assembled one of the utilities that came only in source code. These utilities allow the user to directly read and write to a real CoCo formatted disk and transfer almost any type of file between the two systems keeping in mind the 156k file length limit of the CoCo disk. For years I have used these to move files back and forth - yes, the CoCo emulator has a nice PORT utility but AS9TOO's are simpler and used straight from the command prompt in the MSDOS machine. Those of you who are lucky to have an Intel machine with a 5.25" drive still in it, try the MSDOS SWAP command in order to change the logical access... if it doesn't work then either swap the cables inside the computer or wait a few weeks for new versions of the AS9TOO utilities to allow for other drives than the hard coded A:
MC-10 hi-res Tid-Bits
While poking around the MC-10s memory I stumbled upon an unsupported from Basic semigraphics screen. Soon I was investigating and found that the graphic/text characters in that mode are exactly like the ones produced in the earlier TRS-80 model I/O computers (characters 118-191). The ASCII codes are not the same and I devised a conversion table to be able to move graphics from one screen to the other. This semigraphics mode doesn't support text at all; if one tries to print text all the MC-10 throws back is a mess of characters in place of the VDG text font. Lacking the knowledge on the VDG and all that stuff going on the MC-10 I didn't work at getting around that issue, instead, I wrote a couple of basic Basic (yes, basic Basic - no typo) that take advantage of the new screen. Some results of this are already included in this page starting with the March '99 update.
MC-10 Token Converter
This one is an utility that converts CoCo Basic programs into MC-10 Basic. As known, the tokens for the Basic keywords on the two machines are different. Yes you can CLOAD a CoCo Basic program into the MC-10 (as the tape encoding formats are the same) but as soon as you do a LIST you'll notice that what should be PRINT comes up as DIM... a mess of a program. The machine language utility (conveniently called GOMC10) is used on a CoCo 1, 2 or 3 and after CLOADing the source program it converts the token values and the image CSAVED to tape is 100% compatible with the MC-10. I based my work on a previous utility written by Dan Downard and published in The Rainbow around 1983. GOMC10 is very finished and ready and it works... it's just one of those things of being unable to properly publish it for Internet download .
MC-10 Semi-dumb Terminal setup for use on a OS9 Host
Had a ball getting Micro Color Compac from Radio Shack. This term program let's the MC-10 use a modem at up to 1200 bps which is kind of nice when logging in to a CoCo 1/2 under OS9 Level 1. I plan to release a set of documents on how to setup everything, put some experiences in there and maybe provide a couple of useful things to do in such a minimal time-share setup.
The CoCo Chronicles in Spanish
The very ones written by Alfredo Santos (thanks Al!). A l-o-n-g while ago I contacted Alfredo and asked him for permission to do this, he agreed and since then (how long has it been? 6 or 8 years? sheesh!) I've managed to get everything ready for publication. Hey!, it wasn't that easy! - I mean, I had a draft first done with Word Perfect 5.0 on a MSDOS machine and then I started a series of job switches that left me broke and with barely enough time to pursuit this task. I finally made my stand and already have the files ported over to "newer" WP format.
Story of the CoCo in Mexico
This all started when I wrote a small essay on the history of computing in Mexico which by destiny ended up talking about the CoCo. I still am not sure if it ever saw the light of day in Glenside's CoCo~123 Newsletter (a CoCo magazine where I got published a few times over the past), anyway, I have a draft for the second part of it that involves talking about a very widespread CoCo clone in the Mexico educational system: The MicroSEP system. This is a 100% compatible CoCo clone done actually by Tandy and right now I have in my hands the CoCo 3 equivalent (called the MicroSEP Model 3) and a couple of ROM cartridges used at that time for software distribution (thanks you-know-who-you-are!)