December 2019 Issue of TRS8Bit

Dusty has released the December 2019 issue of the TRS8Bit newsletter on the download page of his web site.

Contents:

Page 1
Travelling Mav
Ian Goes Through The TA 2019 Events For Us, Who Were Unlucky Enough Not To Be Able To Attend (Ian Mavric)
Page 16
The Retro Search
Kevin Updates Us With The Improvements He Has Made Over The Recent Months. (Kevin Parker)
Page 17
Kennett classic
Bill & Karen Announce Their New Project (Bill Degnan & Karen Doneker)
Page 20
Tesla Cybertruck
George Phillips
Page 23
Stretch Your Mind
Another Puzzle From Harold (Harold Finch)
Page 26
Roll ’em
A Nice Little Idea, From The Day Given A 21st Century One-liner Twist (E.t. Fonehune)
Page 28
In Mav’s Workshop
Ian Looks At Some Recently Released Games For The TRS-80 Range And Announces A Competition For 2020Page 36 (Ian Mavric)
Page 37
Tandy Bargains On Ebay.uk
Look As Some Of Recent Ebay Bargains
Page 39
News From Ira At TRS-80.com
Page 41
Lotech Hard Drive For LDOS & LS-DOS For The Models I, III & 4
Page 49
The Way We Were
Just A Look At Some Newsy Item From The Day
Page 62
Arcnet
Pete Has More Information Of The M2 Arcnet Setup He Had Running At This Years T.A. (Peter Cetinski)
Page 64
Xplo
Have You Ever Come Across This Language? Is There A Version Available For The Trs-80 Range? Please, Let Us Know
Page 67
In Mav’s Workshop
Revisiting The CN80 Model 4 Mouse Project – Part 1. (Ian Mavric)

TRLD – File Format Converter+

I am way late to the game on this one. George Philips has written and released a Windows executable file call TRLD which will convert between cas, hex, bas, and cmd.

According to his website:

trld reads one or more TRS-80 programs in .cmd, .cas, .hex or .bas format and saves them as a single .rom, .cmd, .cas or .hex file. As input it supports 250, 500 and 1500 baud .cas cassette image files as well as tokenized and ASCII .bas BASIC program files. Output can be in .cmd, .cas, .hex or .wav (audio file) format.

A precompiled binary for Windows is included along with the source code which can easily be compiled on Mac and Linux systesm. These program loading routines are the same ones used in my TRS-80 Model I/III/4 emulator.

trld is a command-line tool. It takes a list of files. The last one is the output file, the rest are loaded in sequence and combined together to form the output. The format of the input files is determined automatically. The output format is chosen depending on the file suffix. For example, to convert a cassette file to a .cmd (disk executable format) you would type:

trld original.cas original.cmd

With multiple input files the program start address is taken from the last file. For “.cas” output the name of the SYSTEM file is based on the first 6 letters of the output file name. With

trld file.cmd ..\converted\out.cas

The “..\converted\out.cas” file will be called “OUT” and that’s the name you must pass to the SYSTEM command. If you’re using Play CAS, it tells you the tape file’s name.

The utility can be downloaded from George’s website or on the TRS-80 Miscellaneous Utilities page.

Site News

Site Updates since the last …

  • All pages have been converted to HTML5, other than the non-Wordpress catalog search result pages and the non-Wordpress magazine search results page. The site should scale to monitor size well now.
  • The software search results page, which is a combination of php, html, css, jquery, and mysql, has been converted as well. I have also put in a near approximation of the WordPress navbar to make navigating from the page easier.
  • The software search results page now also displays whether there were Radio Shack Bulletins in regard to any piece of software.
  • Customer service bulletins, whether on the software search results page or the Radio Shack Bulletins page, are all downloadable.
  • The way WordPress handles news is not conducive to widescale fixes, so most links from a decade ago, whether to sites, files, or pictures, are bad. I am converting super-old news to web pages, fixing them along the way, and removing them from the way WordPress generally handles news. This way they are still searchable, but also consistent.
  • Having lunch with Don French this weekend; looking forward to it!

Site Updates

Site Updates since the last …

  • Cleaned up inconsistent CSS from all over the place, hoping for a more uniform look.
  • Removed the ‘who posted’ and in ‘what category’ from news items, and consolidated the look of the news items. Old news will continue to be messed up though.
  • Shrunk the right “navbar” to give the site more width.
  • Fixed the WELCOME page links and updated it to include 3 suggested page groups.
  • Broke out more of the INTERNAL into separate menu items under the ADVANCED heading.
  • Consolidated 4 different sets of RAM ADDRESSES into one page. I merged them all, and it will take time to consolidate the different entries; so for the time being there may be 1-4 different entries per RAM address. Of course, I had to get them all into the same format which involved a LOT of decimal to hex and hex to decimal conversions.
  • Consolidated 3 different keymaps into one page.
  • Continued cleanup work on the ROM EXPLAINED pages. These pages will likely keep getting cleaned up.
  • Created an Interviews page and moved individual interviews off the menu. Rounded up links I from other sites as well.
  • Scrubbed for more bad links.
  • Posted somewhere in the area of 320 ZIP’s contaning patches to various pieces of software, for the new Patches page.

If anyone wants to error check and/or otherwise help clean up the RAM ADDRESS page or try to help organize the uploaded Patches, such help would be welcome.

Site Updates

It has been a while since I posted what I have been working on so …

  • Converted the entire site (other than search results pages) into HTML5, including verifying all links.
  • Restructured the overly cramped “Zaps/Mods/Pokes/Tricks” Pages.
  • Broke out all ROM/CPU related pages.
  • Added pages explaining the disassembled Model I ROM.
  • Added a Radio Shack Lore page, which is excerpts from discussions on comp.sys.tandy.
  • Updated the magazine search database with new magazine.
  • Added new magazines to their respective pages
  • Removed all pop-up pages (except search results pages); everything is now included in the WordPress site

New TRS-80 Trash Talk Podcast

The podcast TRS-80 Trash Talk # 33 is out now.

“In this episode we review Tandy Assembly 2019. There were lots of additions to the show this year including the new Tech Track. What worked well and what worked not so well? There’s the usual segments on new projects, new acquisitions, listener feedback and the book review. We talk about JetSet which is a flight simulator for the TRS-80 Model II! There’s some discussion about ARCNET, CP/M Plus and floppy disk baking. Then, in our main segment, we talk to TRS-80 Model 100 enthusiast Josh Malone. Josh gives us a great overview and then a detailed rundown of this most famous portable computer.”

You can download or listen at http://www.trs80trashtalk.com/.