DougieLawson wrote: ↑
Sat Sep 30, 2017 7:59 am
of the the BASIC (it's an acronym for B
ode - so gets capitalised) versions I've ever used in the last 40 years have ever had any logical, bit manipulation instructions, you always had to do that stuff by hand. Closest we got back in the day was PEEK and POKE. On the ZX80 we used that to poke Z80 machine code into memory then call it with a USR command. To get the results you had to use PEEK. We were twiddling the bits in Z80 assembler.
I started writing my first computer programs in February of 1964 which was before BASIC had ever been successfully run on any machine anywhere. I never had a chance to play with BASIC until more than a decade after it existed. Doing most of my work on DEC PDP-8 minicomputers, we did have a similar language called FOCAL, but it lacked a character string data type. I knew of BASIC's existence on time share systems but I just did not have access to it myself.
My first real exposure to BASIC came when I helped my friend assemble his Altair 8800 kit in 1975. He bought the 4K Micro-Soft BASIC and later the 8K version. We spent plenty an evening writing BASIC programs for that machine. I was impressed right at the start that Gates, Allen, and Davidoff had cleverly arranged the AND, OR, XOR, and NOT operators such that they could serve both as bit-oriented operators as well as logical operators. I have often wondered if they stole that idea from someone else or it was their original design.
I programmed professionally for a little more than 43 years from October of 1967 to the end of 2010. As often as that B
ode acronym is referenced nowadays, I seem to remember a brief time when BASIC first appeared when people were still trying to think of such a phrase. I would suggest that the name BASIC came first and then the famous words came later so it did not really begin as an acronym. This was the first time that I have ever had anybody get upset enough about my use of mixed case to make a point of "correcting" me about it. Still, when posting on this forum, I shall try to remember to use all caps when writing the word BASIC.
By the way, what I meant about RTB and FUZE BASIC not being able to input data from an image file because it contains binary data is that RTB and FUZE BASIC both lack any kind of file input command that can pull a character at a time from the input file regardless of its character code. Binary data files can contain any character code from 0 to 255 (decimal) so any processing normally associated with handling text files can interfere with that. Things like terminating on or ignoring a NUL, ignoring Line Feed, terminating on Carriage Return, terminating on comma, and other special responses to other control characters must be avoided when trying to read a binary file.
I was pleased to find that BBC BASIC provides its BGET# function which performs the appropriate needed file reading action suitable for reading data files containing binary data.