Topics

Using the BG 1802 kit

paul.ashley@...
 

Hi.  I am new to the group.  I taught digital electronics using the Cosmac Elf in the late 70"s.  I am trying to catch up.  I have purchased several boards and parts.  I purchased from BG the kit of parts.  Is there a specific board that can be used with the parts?  Also firmware ?

Thanks

Paul

cmdrcosmac
 


Paul,
Welcome to the group! Here you will meet interesting people and learn interesting things.
 The parts you'll need depend on what kind of Elf system you are building.
I assume you are familiar with the "classical" Elf, with the 8 switches and 256 bytes
of RAM. If you do the switches, may I recommend rocker- or paddle switches as they are
easier on the fingers.

 The BG kit includes a large RAM and an EPROM (presumably blank). To use these you will
need a high-address latch eg.74HC373. Usually these systems place the ROM at #0000 and
the RAM at #8000, sometimes these addresses are reversed. There are reasons for each setup.
 Go to Herb Johnson's website and read about Lee Hart's "Membership Card" Elf kit.
It's an interesting design example to show how to set up a system with EPROM and large RAM.
 If you want a serial monitor setup, Lee can supply a EPROM containing the IDIOT monitor.
This is a good choice for a first system. The serial I/O uses the EF and Q signals and a
software UART to keep the hardware simple. You'll need a MAX-232 chip to interface the EF
and Q lines to a PC's serial port, and run a terminal program to talk to IDIOT.
This will allow you to load and save memory and examine and change the CPU registers.

 Many folks on the group run systems with video and sound hardware, cassette storage,
hardware UART serial and other advanced peripherals. There exist assemblers that run on the
PC so you don't have to assemble with pencil and paper. (I've done that)

 Some of us design systems with vintage parts, some prefer the modern parts.
Retrocomputing is as much a work of art as it is electronic design.

 Herb Johnson's and Lee Hart's websites contain a wealth of knowledge about the COSMAC;
and searching the Web you'll be able to find Ipso Facto, Questdata, and the Viper.
as well as many original RCA documents about their COSMAC products and development
systems. These publications from back in the day are a goldmine of information about
the 1802 and the systems then built around it.

Happy New Year!
-Chuck

ajparent1/kb1gmx
 

Paul,

Take advantage of the web interface to this group as the files section is loaded
with information and code.

As to firmware depends on what you building.  Check Lee's site as that can make
life easier.

Allison

Lee Hart
 

From: ajparent1/kb1gmx <kb1gmx@...>
Paul,

Take advantage of the web interface to this group as the files section is loaded
with information and code.

As to firmware depends on what you building.  Check Lee's site as that can make
life easier.
My web site is <http://www.sunrise-ev.com>. In particular, see
<http://www.sunrise-ev.com/1802.htm> for the 1802 Membership Card,
<http://www.sunrise-ev.com/vcf-elf.htm> to build the classic Elf,
<http://www.sunrise-ev.com/vip2k.htm> for an RCA VIP,
<http://www.sunrise-ev.com/projects.htm> for other 1802 projects.

You'll find manuals, schematics, parts lists, part sources, software, bare boards, and complete kits for many 1802 projects.

Herb Johnson's website starts at <http://www.retrotechnology.com>. There is so much information there on hundreds of vintage computers that it's best to use Google's search capability to find specific information. For example, google "site:www.retrotechnology.com 1802"

As to directions, that depends on where you are starting from, and where you'd like to end up! Can you provide a little more information on what you have now, and what you want to build?

Happy New Year,
Lee Hart

--
Excellence does not require perfection. -- Henry James
--
Lee A. Hart http://www.sunrise-ev.com

Paul Schmidt
 

Also, for what it is worth, you can take a look at the ELF manual and build details that are downloadable here:

http://cosmacelf.com/news/new-cosmac-elf-group-owner.html

Once there, you need to Publications | Books & Papers, then click the link "COSMAC ELF Manual & Build Details". This was my effort to as accurately as possible replicate the original magazine ELF, with none of the later add-ons and expansions. I know a number of people have successfully built their ELFs starting with the various documents in the ZIP file....

Paul Schmidt

-----Original Message-----
From: cosmacelf@groups.io <cosmacelf@groups.io> On Behalf Of Lee Hart
Sent: Sunday, December 29, 2019 10:23 AM
To: cosmacelf@groups.io
Subject: Re: [cosmacelf] Using the BG 1802 kit

From: ajparent1/kb1gmx <kb1gmx@...>
Paul,

Take advantage of the web interface to this group as the files section
is loaded with information and code.

As to firmware depends on what you building. Check Lee's site as that
can make life easier.
My web site is <http://www.sunrise-ev.com>. In particular, see <http://www.sunrise-ev.com/1802.htm> for the 1802 Membership Card, <http://www.sunrise-ev.com/vcf-elf.htm> to build the classic Elf, <http://www.sunrise-ev.com/vip2k.htm> for an RCA VIP, <http://www.sunrise-ev.com/projects.htm> for other 1802 projects.

You'll find manuals, schematics, parts lists, part sources, software, bare boards, and complete kits for many 1802 projects.

Herb Johnson's website starts at <http://www.retrotechnology.com>. There is so much information there on hundreds of vintage computers that it's best to use Google's search capability to find specific information. For example, google "site:www.retrotechnology.com 1802"

As to directions, that depends on where you are starting from, and where you'd like to end up! Can you provide a little more information on what you have now, and what you want to build?

Happy New Year,
Lee Hart

--
Excellence does not require perfection. -- Henry James
--
Lee A. Hart http://www.sunrise-ev.com

joshbensadon
 

Hi Paul,

Welcome to the group.  Indeed there are many 1802 computers/projects you can do.  I believe one of the most amazing ones is the ELF 2K by Bob Armstrong and Mike Riley.

Mike did an amazing job on the firmware.  
Of course please check out Lee Hart and Paul Schmidt works.  
Paul has written a very comprehensive guide on the ELF... anything you can think of asking is explained there!
Lee has a great army of 8 bit computer projects.

I can't pick any favorites, as they are all winners.  

But as you're new here, it would be awesome to hear more about you and your career teaching electronics with the ELF.
Where did you teach? Who did you teach?  Hardware? Software? Why the ELF and not another processor?  Did you have any connections to RCA? Where did you get your materials back then?
Trust me, anything you have to say about the ELF would be appreciated here... we love a good ELF story.

Cheers,
Josh Bensadon
Toronto



From: cosmacelf@groups.io <cosmacelf@groups.io> on behalf of paul.ashley@... <paul.ashley@...>
Sent: Saturday, December 28, 2019 11:06 PM
To: 'cosmacelf@groups.io' <cosmacelf@groups.io>
Subject: [cosmacelf] Using the BG 1802 kit
 
Hi.  I am new to the group.  I taught digital electronics using the Cosmac Elf in the late 70"s.  I am trying to catch up.  I have purchased several boards and parts.  I purchased from BG the kit of parts.  Is there a specific board that can be used with the parts?  Also firmware ?

Thanks

Paul