80 Femtocomputing

Octember 1984 issue

Copyright © 1981 by Roger M. Wilcox. All rights reserved.

The original draft was written on my dad's mechanical typewriter, accompanied by hand-drawn illustrations — such as they were. Every image you see was scanned in from the original, although some pages suffered water damage over the years. All non-image text was transcribed in exactly the format it originally appeared. The lack of an = key on the original mechanical typewriter means all = signs were originally written in by hand. All spellings, punctuation, capitalizations, etc. are as in the original.

You have been warned.

80 Femtocomputing, Octember 1984 cover
80 Contents
          6. ANOTHER STAR-TRAK GAME -- Surprise, 80-micro!

         10. SMALLDOS -- Howza bout a DOS for a 16K femtocomputer?!

         14. DICE SIMULATOR -- 80-femto's biggest program ever printed!

         16. CAPTAIN TAPEDRIVE -- The Creped Avenger strikes again!

         21. DECOMPILER -- slow down thas speedy CMD program!

         25. THE DUKES OF M*A*S*H -- Car chases in Korea.

         29. MARS ROVER ADVENTURE -- Control a robot on the surface of the

                                     reddest desert planet known.

         31. NEWS FROM POKER TABLE SOFTWARE, INC. -- by David Bush

          3. 80-REMarks -- non-existing mail about our first issue.

         33. REVOLT! -- Start your own Communist country.

         35. BLINKY, PINKY, INKY, and CLYDE -- a fast, all-BASIC Pac Dude.

                                   COMING NEXT MONTH

                                      a full moon


                            BIG HIVE SOFTWARE

                             by Bill Hoagie

        │ROBOT │      Guess what?! You know what this game does. Once
        │      │
        │ATTACK│      again, despite the fantastic graphics knowlege
                      of Hoagie and Con-you, the sound effects, with the

                      exception of the voice synthesis, are bad enough

                      to drive you BERSERK!

        │ATTACK│      This is Billy & Jeffy's first game where they got
        │      │
        │FORCE │      the idea of speeding up the enemies as your score
                      gets higher. I think they did an excellent job

                      with the sound and graphics -- don't you?

       │  TANK  │     Based on a vector-screen arcade game in which you
       │        │
       │ ATTACK │     get ATTACKed by tanks and helicopters while out
                      on a Sunday drive in your jeep. With bad sound!

       │ GOBLIN │     Here we go again with another version of Pac Dude!
       │        │
       │ ATTACK │     This used to be the best, until we at 80-femto got
                      our hands on "Blinky, Pinky, Inky, and Clyde."

        │HEART  │      That's what you'll get from playing these games
        │       │
        │ATTACK │      24 hours a day for ten years!

                              Big Hive Software

                             Post 747 Honeycomb St.

                              Van Kratner, CA 30000




          Dear 80-femtocomputing,

             I must have gotten a bad copy of your Septober 80-Femto.

          Tell me, what was on the last page?

             Oh, just a description of Duel-M-Droids.

             Hey, ya wanna buy a joint?

             No thanks. I'm not interested in purchasing a bar or pub.

             I'm interested in knowing just what the big deal was over

          "Empire Wars!". Just what kind of program was it, anyway?

             Who knows. Probably someone's feeble attempt at Android Numb.

             Hey, man, like I just wanted to say, like those hints in

          "Slant," man? They're real cool. Like, they really helped me,

          'cause like, my head is twisted sideways, totally. Thanx, man!

             You're from Southern California, right?

             Well, according to your Septober '84 issue, the Octember

          80-femtocomputing is going to be a letter-bomb. So here I put

          my fond farewell to the world, as with this issue, I explode.

             Oh yeah? You and whose army?!?

             I know how to fix TRSDOS 87.4 so that it won't start think-

          ing with a mind of its own! Try: POKE 564893, 784.

             That's good advice, but will TRSDOS 87.4 allow you to do

          something like that?

             Isn't it amazing how no one has bothered with making a

          model V version of T-Bug?!? Probably because T-Bug went out

          with the purple plague. But for you TRaSh-80 buffs, here's

          what you need to change: M 435A 36 00.

             I tried it, and this doesn't do a damn thing for the program

          except cause it to load in RSM from the disk, which is just as

          well. █


                              INSTANTANEOUS SOFTWARE

          DISNEY ADVENTURE: Level II         16 K (tape to disk)
                            Model I & III    BASIC with USR routines

             This game was made as a protest to Biff & Spudd Mutt's

          "Darth Dreadnought." It has been rated G by its author due

          to descriptions of Bambi eating grass, Cinderella riding in

          a carriage, and singing dwarves. This is a simple treasure

          hunt adventure, in which you must find a million dollars in

          gold eggs, the last Applegate treasure, and a few riddles

          leading you to a large combined hoarde. With sound effects!

             PRICE: $ 14.95 for adventurers, $ 15,95 for Disney freaks

          MOOLA ATTACK: Level I & up           16¼ K (don't you just hate us!)
                        Model I & up           machine talk

             In this so-called "game," your starbase is attacked by alien

          invaders which look suspiciously like I.R.S. auditors. Instead

          of accumulating points, you get from ten to five hundred bucks

          for each illegal alien you shoot down. Superb voice sound

          effects include, "Your money or your wife," "Hand it over, Joe,"

          and "The government'll get you for this!!!"

             PRICE: $ 14.95 in back taxes

          FIREBALL FREAK: Level IIIIIIII        25 bytes (tape or disk)
                          Model IIIIIIII        COBALT language

             This program does nothing more than turn your computer in-

          stantaneously and irrevocably into a fireball, which lasts only

          instantaneously. Now you know why we're called, "Instantaneous

          Software!" With sound effects!

             PRICE: about two bucks.

                        This advertizement continued next paige?!?


                            Instantaneous Software

          GOON CRESTA: Level II             16 K (amazingly enough)
                       Model I & III        machine lingo again

             Didn't think we'd market a program like this one,did you?

          Well, with the requirements for this program, it's right up

          our freeway. It requires either a Grafix-80 or ERAM high-res

          attachment in addition to the Crayon-kit color modification.

          We would normally sell the color-80 version of this program,

          but that version requires no additional hardware. And that's

          just not our style. By the way, this program would have taken

          up 48 K of RAM had it not been for the sub-machine scrunching

          techniques first pioneered in Tiny Adventure. With sound ef-

          fects, of course.

             PRICE: the usual $ 14.95 for tape, $ 19.95 for disk


             We have a whole 500-page catalog just loaded with other pro-

          grams (most of them much more boring than these). If you are

          interested in looking at it, write to us, and we'll send you

          back a note saying, "Curiosity kills the cat."

                              Instantaneous Software

                        a division of Instantaneous Coffee

                                1974 Memory lane

                              San  Nicholas,  ZX  98765

                           (don't call us - we're purposefully unlisted!)



                          ANOTHER STAR-TRAK GAME

             After playing an early Simutek version of Star-Trek, the

          idea came into my head to write my own version of Star-Trek.

          After studying the programming technique used by Good ol'

          Simutek inc., I pirated most of them, and then implimented a

          few new ideas of my own.

             The result was a very fast, all-BASIC version of Star-Trek,

          which I appropriately named after the title on this very page.

          Unlike my previous non-adventure program, Empire Wars!, this

          program was actually good! Now then, since numerous other Star-

          Trek games were already on the market, I figured I might as

          well forget about sending it in to the big software companies,

          but what about a publication like 80-microcomputing?...

             And would you believe it, they turned it down! I gave them

          probably the best non-adventure program I've ever written, and

          all they said was, "We feel it is an area that has been ad-

          equately covered." The Dummies!

             Well, now, of course, any TRaSh-80 owner worth his weight in

          manure knows the meaning of the words, "Another Star-Trak Game."

          I am proud to be the author of the biggest selling space war

          game since, "STARFIGHTER."

             So, pooey on youey, 80-microcomputing! You had your chance,

          but Bad-Lode software took it away from you!!! █


                        THE PROGRAM STOAR

          TOTALLY, FOR SURE: Level headed dude        it's oh-K (slipped disk)
                             Model construction       surfer's language

             Like wow, man! Cowadunga! Now you can simulate living in

          world-infamous Southern California, even if you live in some

          far-off place like Watts or Bakersfield. Comes complete with

          seven disks (all of which must be loaded in at once) and a one-

          word sheet of documentation containing the password. If the

          correct password is not entered, all seven disks will be

          crashed (we've got this thing down better than Space Vaiders!).

          If the correct password is entered, each disk will dump its

          own 1200 K of data into the TRaSh-80's memory in just one and

          one-half short hours. Simulate living in the land of earth-

          quakes down to every detail, including surfing, skateboarding,

          getting mugged in a dark alley, choking on smog, and getting

          mauled by "punkers." No adventure or CFS parsers to worry about

          here -- you're really in southern California! With smell effects!

             PRICE: either 3 hits of acid or an ounce of grass

          GIANT ADVENTURE: (oh, screw the parameters!)

             Once upon a time, a dude tried to put a "Zork" parser onto

          original Adventure. The results were impressive, but why stop

          there? He soon worked in the original Zork, all of Scott Adam's

          adventures (numbers 1 thru 18), all of Greg Hassock's advents,

          all the adventures from The Programmer's Guilt and Bad-Lode,
          every other adventure known to exist, and then added some little

          things of his own. The resulting program took up almost all of the

          available infinity K of RAM, but was none the less fantastic.

             PRICE: almost infinity bucks

           this advertizement continued next Paige?!?


                        The Program Stoar

          COMPUTER SIMULATOR: any Level              No K (tape, disk, etc.)
                              any Model              SYSTEM format

             The idea for this program came when someone just learning

          to use T-Bug decided to write to tape a  block of memory zero

          bytes in length (P 4A00 49FF 0000 ZIPPO). The resulting tape

          contained the following: a 255-byte leader consisting of zeroes,

          the synchronization code (A5H), the file name header code (55H),

          the file name (ZIPPO) padded with trailing blanks (20H), the

          entry point header code (whatever), and the entry point (00H).

          The resulting program caused an immediate jump to "MEMORY SIZE?"

          (MEM SIZE, Cass, etc.). This would normally be cause for saying,

          "Unh," but our wild and witty programmer would not be Unhed so

          easily. He reapeated the same process, only this time using the

          file name, "SIMULA," for Simulator. The program itself wasn't

          too inovative, but the idea was, so he sent this program up

          to us under the name, "Computer Simulator." And he also sent

          up our advertizement:

          "Now, you too can pretend that you own a TRaSh-80 femtocomputer!

          This new program will simulate the operation of your very computer

          down to the last minute detail! With optional sound!"

             PRICE: tape 3¢, disk 4¢, stringy floppy 3½¢

                     The program stoar wishes to thank

                              absolutely no one
                      for making their profits possible

           this advertizement continued next Paige?!?


                        The Program Stoar

          UP YOUR ASCII: no parameters whatsoever

             Tired of the same old boring, routine ASCII computer code?

          Then you may or may not need "Up Your ASCII!" With this handy,

          dandy little gem of a program, you can convert that (yicch!)

          ASCII display of yours into IBM's brilliant, resonant EBCDIC

          characters! How would you like to PRINT CHR$(34), and get the

          number "7"?!? Sounds real neat, huh? This program requires no

          additional hardware, since it was hard enough to make in the

          first place. However, EBCDIC compatibility is one thing - IBM

          compatibility is another. So, get "Up Your ASCII," and say

          good-bye to the real world and your graphics forever.

             PRICE: $ 22.95 from us, $ 4.95 from a garage sale


             Our entire stock of other programs is not only sold out, but

          never really existed. Sorry to you fans of Larry and Scott! So

          why don't you dudes drown your sorrows and get "Totally, for

          Sure" or "Giant Adventure" or "Computer Simulation" or "Up Your

          ASCII" or something?

                             The Program Stoar

                               a division of

                          The Program Stoar, Inc.
                             P.O. Box  -41

                         New York, MN 987612345

                          call (198)-PRO-GRAM



             So, you finally went out and got yourself a desk drive.

          Well, that's just great - except for the fact that due to

          the new move from the Nationalist World Government, the sale

          of memory expansion kits has been outlawed!

             Now your computer is stuck with a disk system that runs on

          16 K of memory. Now then, how are you going to do anything with

          a pip-squeak memory allocation that takes up 8 K for things

          like DOS and CMD space?

             The answer is simple: get yourself a smaller version of DOS!

          But where can you find a DOS that takes up such little memory?

          Another simple answer : get SmallDOS! The creators of this tiny

          Desk Operating System were also the same people who made up

          "Crunch, Scrunch, and Concentrate," their own private little

          program that resulted in Tiny Adventure and other such excur-

          sions. SmallDOS, their shrunked version of DOS minus, is their

          laterst outburst, which I'm sure they were able to make with only

          a few keystroke commands.

             Why those guys don't want to market Crunch, Scrunch, and Con-

          centrate is beyond me, though I'll bet they just want to bleed

          everyone dry by selling the programs individually. Anywho, Small-

          DOS does have quite a range of capabilities.

             Not the least of these abilities (that are caped) is Unbug.

          This little program is quite similar to Debug, except that it

          was made in an attempt to combine the DEBUG command in DOS

          minus with the actual "Debug" program. The attempt resulted in

          the discovery of an entirely new Z-80 block command: JPIR. The

          authors liked this block-jump command so much that they equip-



          ped Unbug to do nothing but change regular machine language

          commands to JPIR, whose code, by the way, is ED FQ hexadecimal.

             Another useful feature of SmallDOS is "Crunch," which will

          do the first step of "Crunch, Scrunch, and Concentrate." The

          purpose of "Crunch" is simply to put the program into a special

          code designed specifically for the purpose of that particular

          program. However, without the right means of reading this code,

          the Z-80 CPU will only get confused and tend to lock up and/or

          reboot. Evidently the clarity of the code is established by

          "Scrunch and Concentrate," or at least one of the two.

             Still another useful utility included with smallDOS is the

          single command "Memory." This command will tell the user if

          the TRaSh-80 has 16, 32, or 48 K of RAM, which the user is

          probably already aware of and doesn't need to be informed about.

          At first, the creators of SmallDOS were going to omit this

          command, but at last they decided to keep it in, along with

          the command "Device," which is just as useless.

             The DEF command has been upgraded to being able to actually

          DEFine commands as functions. This is very useful for doing

          machine language LPRINT routines, since all it does is relocate

          the jump vectors for the command specified. This new DEF com-

          mand works on every BASIC command in just the same way, except

          for the command END. When I tried DEF END, I got a game pro-

          gram in which you have to blast away at landers while saving

          ten little humanoids.

             There are lots of these useful little commands, such as

          ORDER, which causes the computer to respond with either, "Big

          Mac or Medium Mac," or, "Yes sir, sir!!!". But powerful  (and/

          or powerless) commands are not the only advantages to the new



          SmallDOS besides its size....

             Figure one shows an operating version of SmallDOS running

          on all TRaSh-80's modelled I through VI. As you can't see,

          SmallDOS has compatibility with all Z-80 based systems (actually,

          there are separate versions for model I & III and model II & IV,

          but who really cares anyway. Although the model V and VI ver-

          sions were actually faked and don't really exist, the model

          II & IV version is 100% compatible with the TRaSh-80 Kuller


             The single most awesome feature of SmallDOS is the included

          program "Chipglop." This little gem of a program does exactly

          what its name suggests: it will take any chip inside the user's

          TRaSh-80 and turn it into glop. For a moment, I thought they were

          joking; such commands only work in TRSDOS 87.4. But by watching

          the computer carefully, I found out exactly how this command

          program works: since machine (or in this case, sub-machine)

          language works faster than the eye can follow, SmallDOS simply

          orders  out for guacamole,and while it's waiting out the few

          milliseconds, it calls in a TRaSh-80 repair man to rip out the

          chip you wanted to glop so badly.

             This is one hell of a buff DOS. If anyone disagrees with me,

          I can be certain they won't be around for long. █
                      │                       │   "Crunch, scrunch, and
                      │                       │ Concentrate uses the same
                      │                       │ methods that people use
                      │                       │ to print a whole novel on
                      │                       │ their license plate"
                      │                       │          – Scott Adama
                      │                       │
                      │                       │
                        Figure 1. Over-exposed


                                BAD LODE SOFTWARE

                            One more plug for

Bad-Lode Software logo

        Space Warrior -- a "City and the Stars" type Adventure

        Space-N-Vaders -- call me in about a year

        Another Star-Trak Game -- new and improved - I hope!

        Interception -- wow! It even saves the high score!


           All of these games do exist! I swear! Cross my CPU and hope

        to crash! However, no big-time dummies have ever bothered to

        marcket these here games. I have at least 20 different games

        in stock, all made by me, Roger M. Wilcox. So, if you want to

        get your paws on them, call me at (213)-828-8830 any time between

        1 pm and 1:05 pm.

                            Bad-Lode Software

                              1102 23rd st.

                          Santa Monica, CA 90403


                                 DICE SIMULATOR

             I'll tell you right now, I just finished reading the Level

          I instruction manual, and am I excited about this program here,

          a real random doozie? Of course I am! Once, I lost one of the

          dice out of a crap game monopoly set, and needed a replacement.

          Rushing back to my Level I manual, I found just what I had been

          looking for: a random number generator!

             I quickly typed in this program, and saved it to tape for

          later use. I soon found it so versatile that I felt everyone

          should know about it.

             This little 22 byte program can be of use to almost anybody.

          Imagine, the power of a die in the portability of a massive

          TRaSh-80! I hope you like it. █

        │ 10 X = RND(6) │
        │               │
        │ 20 PRINT X    │

             -- The writer of this article was put in a mental institute

          just six short hours after we got this article. We don't know

          how or why he was put there.

             And if you believe that, I have some snake oil to sell you!


                              AVENGER IRRATIONAL

          AVENGER # 16: the usual

             This is Scott Adama's latest excursion, Mongoose Adventure.

          It involves the least liked part of Avenger # 2 along with

          the stupid commands involved in Avenger # 11 about manipulating

          your body. Actually, the Avenger wouldn't be so bad if it had

          a solid plot, but instead, you are a mongoose/squirrel who

          has to hold his breath and open his eyes. With sound effects!

             PRICE: the usual

          SMALLDOS: all levels        one byte (disk of course)
                    all models        sub-machine language

             Remember the review a few pages back? Well, here it isn't!

          The one DOS that reminds you of both Upchuck-DOS and Tiny Ad-

          venture! In case you're wondering why we can sell disks and

          tapes so cheap, like say, for 25 or 30 cents with a program on

          it, you haven't been keeping up with your current events. Disks

          and tapes can now be mined straight out of the asteroid belt;

          do you know how great it feels to stick your shovel into the

          ground and pull out a C-30 cassette?!?

             Anyway, since this has nothing to do with either SmallDOS

          or Avenger Irrational, I'll continue my stream of gibberish.

          SmallDOS is real good. I mean real good. And me and my boys

          don't want nobody thinkin' it's not good. And my boys thinks

          that not buyin' it means you don't like it. Get the message,

          fat boy? (great shake-down, huh?)

             PRICE: an offer youse can't refuse

                               Avenger Irrational
                              The alley behind Rocky's pizza,
                              No Man's Land, NE 70403
                             (ask for "Scott")


             No, this is not an article about an Adventure game, although

          that doesn't sound like too bad of an idea. We are going to

          look into the exploits of the hardly known super hero, Captain

          Tapedrive, also known as the "Creped Avenger." Whoever we are,

          we're not quite certain....

             Captain Tapedrive was born at about the time the first TRaSh

          80 was sold. As he grew up through childhood, he realized

          that he wasn't like all the other commands and programs that

          were his friends - he was a piece of hardware! Realizing the

          potential of something like this, he decided to devote the

          rest of his entire life to the protection of goodness and

          niceness. And so, when all the other users around him had their

          tape drives break down, Captain Tapedrive remained standing.

             The first threat to the sanctity Captain Tapedrive had pro-

          tected was a little piece of hardware called, "Level II ROM."

          He was reluctant about his user installing this new chip into

          the TRaSh-80 at first, but after a while he got used to it.

          In fact, this new chip was an improvement over his old system

          of operating; it made him save programs at 500 baud, thus

          doubling Captain Tapedrive's power.

             And yet, there were some things about this new ROM that

          frightened him. There was the old friendly group of CLOAD,

          CSAVE, PRINT #, INPUT #, and even the newly acquired SYSTEM;

          but then there were these sinister-looking commands such as

          LOAD, SAVE, OPEN, CLOSE, and CMD. However, these commands

          seemed to be safe, dormant nothings, since the fixed-RAM jump

          co-ordinates for them simply led to ?L3 ERROR, whatever that


             Then suddenly, about half a year later, his user came in


                       The Adventures of Captain Tapedrive

          with a gigantic, ominous piece of hardware. Its name was a long

          one: "Expansion Interface," which sounds like someone just

          grabbed your face and s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d it out. It had no mov-

          ing parts except for a couple of on-board relays, but still it

          was more than twice the size of Captain T.D..

             'Interface?' the Creped avenger thought. 'I've heard that

          word somewhere before.... Oh, yes! Now I remember. That's what

          you call a device that's hooked up with a computer which will

          allow you to communicate with outside hardware.'

             'HARDWARE?!?!?' The very word made him gasp. Why for all he

          knew, the next alien piece of hardware (gasp) that would in-

          vade this perfectly balanced system could be a (shudder) ...

          DISK DRIVE! If that were true, then his little friends

          CLOAD and CSAVE he had known and loved would surely die.

             A few days later, his fears were realized. As his user came

          in from getting the mail, he held a large parcel under one arm

          marked, "Ha, Captain T! This is a Disk Drive!" How about that.

          A bullet with his name on it.

             He set the package down on the table and watched the disk

          drive slowly hatch its way out. Its feathers were wet at first,

          but it quickly dried out in about a minute. The Creped Avenger

          was awe-struck at this spectacle. How come he had to be unwrap-

          ped when he first arrived? The new hardware makers had struck


             In the distance of another room, the front doorbell rang.

          This was the chance C.T. had been waiting for. As soon as his

          user was well out of the room, the Creped Avenger lept high in

          the air and landed on his benevolent prey.


                      The Adventures of Captain Tapedrive

             He took out his trusty AC adaptor and attempted to lasso

          his high-speed enemy. But the Disk Drive would not be taken in

          so easily; with a blast from his high-speed rotor, he knocked

          the cord clean away.

             Now Captain Tapedrive was angry. He lept up much closer,

          and began to do battle with his cord, handle, hatch, and six

          buttons, all at point-blank range. The Disk Drive tried des-

          perately to counter each attack with what little he had (cord,

          data bus, latch, and rotor, and would have been done-for if

          not for his own high speed.

             Captain Tapedrive moved in for the kill as he pressed "Fast-

          Forward." Just then, his user, hearing the clash of plastic,

          rushed back into the room. Sitting there on the table, as in-

          nocent as two pieces of hardware, were the two pieces of hard-

          ware. A bit banged up, but who'd notice.

             'That's strange,' thought the user. 'I put only the Disk

          Drive on that table. Well, I guess that gave the both of them

          a little time to get acquainted.' If he only knew.

             He picked the two of them up, and brought them to the com-

          puter's side. Captain Tapedrive knew what that disk system

          would do to CLOAD and CSAVE, but all he could do now was turn

          to it and say, "Someday, I'm gonna crash you!"

             As the days crept by, the user became more and more acquain-

          ted with the disk system and the DOS, and began to neglect the

          CLOAD command and Captain Tapedrive more and more. The Creped

          avenger could almost read the exact thoughts of the Disk Drive:

          "Now, little CLOAD command, you will DIE!!!"

             Captain Tapedrive had to destroy the evil disk system before

          Level II BASIC ROM was suddenly converted into EPROM and perman-


                  The Adventures of Captain Tapedrive

          ently erased. He waited until the last second to implement his

          newly-conceived plan of destruction. Then suddenly, his user

          began to do a sector-by-sector search of his most loaded disk,

          crammed with important arcade games of which there were no back-

          up copies. This was the chance C.T. had been waiting for. He

          began to send out binary thought waves to the disk, a technique

          which he had never been able to do before. The thought waves

          said only one thing: "FASTER!!!"

             And so, faster and faster went the disk drive, mounting in

          speed and in rotor pitch. Smoke began to pour out from the air

          vents in back of the disk. Its user pushed reset; that did

          nothing. He turned the system off; still, nothing. He reached

          down to the outlet and pulled the plug from the disk drive in


             But by then, it was already too late. The disk had melted,

          the drive's rotor had seized up, and finally, the drive itself


             "You lousy drives are all alike!" the user shouted. "I'm

          getting rid of you once and for all!!"

             He ripped the drive right off of its data bus, and kicked

          it across the room, out an open window, and into a pile of a

          dog's masterpiece.


             Captain Tapedrive sat lazily around, loading in a program

          at over 4,000 baud with the use of his fast-forward key. Sud-

          denly, he picked up a signal with his audio sensors. Could it

          be? Yes, it was!

             His user was talking to someone on the phone about a hookup

          with a stringy floppy!... █


                              ARPHA PRODUCTS

                          Now! From

ARPHA logo

                          the company that pirated

                            Acari's Joysticks,

                             we bring you:

           TRACK BALL: great for rolling around on footprints or train rails.

           PURPLE SCREEN: is green too boring for ya?

           BLACK SCREEN: to hell with that CRT display!

           SC-78503: a real Starfighter with real hypercharge to combat

                     real Exxonerators and Kluster Chucks.

           BUBBLE SORT ROM: sort out your bubbles just by turning on your

                            little femtocomputer!


              Although the SC-78503 isn't exactly a piece of hardware,

           we're selling it anyway for the low, low cost of just 200

           thousand bank balance Sovereigns. Everything else is priced

           in normal, boring U.S. dollars. To get a listing of the pri-

           ces, you'll have to order a joystick. So, send $39.95 to:

                             I Wanna Have A Joystick

                                P.O.d box INKANGAROO-408

                              Hollyweird, VD 84307




             So, you've just bought your new TRaSh-80. You don't need to

          worry too much about programming the thing; you've programmed

          computers in BASIC before.

             Hey, this is a pretty neat arcade game program here; you

          want to know how it works. Wait a minute! It's in machine

          language! You barely even know what assembly language looks

          like; you've never had any training in Z-80 assembly. That

          little disassembler is absolutely no help at all!

             Does this incident sound familiar to you? Maybe a few years

          ago, yes! But nowadays nobody really gives a frac about whether

          they can read assembly language or not; they either know the

          assembler or just play the games.

             However, there are a dauntless few BASICusers who would

          like to know how a particular machine language program works,

          but are too stupid to read the Assembly language book. And

          for them, we have the "Decompiler."

             As its name suggests, "DCMPIL" takes a machine language

          program and converts it not into Assembly, but actual BASIC!

          Thus, this brilliant program changes the code 3E FF not into

          "LD  A,255" but into "A = 255." As you might guess, this is

          grossly inefficient, especially when loading a two-byte reg-

          ister pair.

             Fortunately, the program is smart enough to know which ROM

          calls do what; for instance, CALL 33H is PRINT CHR$(A), and

          CALL 2BH is A = ASC(INKEY$). The LDIR command, which is usually

          a bear, is simply FOR BC = BC TO 0 STEP -1 : POKE DE, PEEK (HL):

          DE = DE+1 : HL = HL+1 : NEXT. This looks just great at first, but

          when you start thinking about the fact that HL has to split up

          into the registers H and L, you can start to see the problems.

             Each decompiled program begins with the statement DEFINT A-Z.



          Most of you readers out there might just say, "So what?" to

          this, but us real programmers know exactly what's wrong

          with the DEFINT statement. And if you can't tell, then you're ob-

          viously not a real programmer and have no right to be reading

          this article. (Had you worried, didn't I?!?)

             Remember what William Barden, Jr. said in his book, "TRaSh-

          80 Assembly Language Programming?" He said, "Assembly language

          will enable you to run a program in 4K that requires 24K in

          BASIC." Well, the modern compilers are the obvious exception

          to this rule; in fact, they almost have the memory usages

          switched around between Assembly and BASIC. Ater all, what can

          you say when a program that says "10 PRINT  20 END" takes all

          of 300 bytes compiled?

             Anywho, back to the subject at hand, you'd probably think

          that the Decompiler would double or triple the memory usage

          upon converting a program to BASIC. Well, this just isn't the

          case; and that's the one true virtue of this program. A 14K

          machine language program will fit into 10K once decompiled!

          So it seems that the compile/decompiple works out perfectly and

          just like you'd expect it to - in reverse.

             What's really fun to do with this program is to decompile

          ROM and RUN the program. The result of this should be the usual

          message, "MAMMARY SIZE?" at the top of the screen, and the ab-

          ility to run your own programs in a "BASIC on top of BASIC."

          However, this is not the result; all too frequently, the ROM

          decompiled will POKE into a forbidden memory location and cause

          the computer to freeze up beyond recovery, even by the reset

          button. Sometimes, even turning it off doesn't fix it, in which

          case, you probably have a bad memory chip or CPU.

             And this is not only the fate of a decompiled ROM; about half



          of all the programs I've decompiled end up locking up all too

          soon in the RUNning. But then there are those that don't lock


             The BASIC program is slow, inaccurate, and hardly ever the

          same program as the original. In other words, I love it! I

          tried playing my decompiled copy of "Offender," and I had all

          too much time to decide on my next move.

             Sure, it had disadvantages. But so what? I can't compose

          The Messiah on my copy of Space-N-Vaders, I can't cause my

          MDOS to fetch the morning paper, and I can't RUN a program

          with DCMPIL. So who gives a farp? It's all the same, and it

          doesn't make a draged bit of difference. █

                     movie of DCMPIL's effect on 'Row Boat Attack'



          OFFENDER: Level Headed          Don't wory, it's OK

                    Model T               machine lagsam of course

             Below you, fifteen men stand on their heads because of

          your stench. (Actually, because of the TRaSh-80's "#$%&in'

          graphics, we had to represent them with a "!") You can move,

          fire, hyperactivespace, go back on your word, and even fire

          your weapon of weapons - the Stink Bomb, which destroys ev-

          erything on the screen with you (sometimes including yourself!)

             Six kinds of enemy ships, all with perfumed bodies, try

          to desperately remove your stench. Sometimes, they fire floral

          torpedoes, sometimes they mutate into Avon ladies, and some-

          times, they even break up into six Honeybees, which all try

          to swarm you.

             Ah, but with a blast from your armpit laser cannon, you

          wipe them all out. But what's this? Your last "!" has been

          taken away by another "(A)"....Oh, no! Now you're going to

          be "spaced-out" once the panet finishes exploding (uninhab-

          ited planets do those sorts of things, you know.)! Will you

          make it to the fifth Cleanliness Wave, or will you smell clean

          forever more?

             PRICE: TAG. You give us the bucks, and we deliver....

                              Bill's Joint

                       Not the same as "Williams"

                             1020 cutthroat row,

                            Harlem, NY 76543

                        (ask for a "green guitar")


                          THE DUKES OF M*A*S*H

             I'll bet you were expecting a little parody/adventure story,

          right? Well, you're wrong! It has no Adventure in it whatsoever.

          This is actually a program put out by Aant Eater Software, in

          which you have to overcome three dummy characters (Hawkeye,

          Beau, and Roscoe) who know how to say only one like apiece.

             Your character can be any other character out of either of

          these two shows. You'll have the most power if you choose Boss

          Logg, but then again, you'll also be the slowest.

             Now, then, here's what you've all not been waiting for: a

          simulation of the actual game!...

          (Theme music comes on, a collage between "Just a Good Ol' Boys",

           and "Suicide is Painless")

          B.J.: Hey, Hawk! How ya doin'?

          HAWKEYE: What are you, crazy? Don't you know there are people

                   dying out there?!?

          BEEJ: Yeah, I know, Hawk. That's all you've ever told me!

          TRAPPER: Yeah, and me too!

          BEEJ: Hey! You're not supposed to be on the same shows with me!

          TRAP: I wish you could say the same for little Microwave...

          MICROWAVE: What did you say sirs that you just said?

          BEEJ: Nevermind, just get the orders of the say from the head

                doctor for the patients.

          MICRO: Okay. Hawkeye Pierce, sir?

          HAWKEYE: What are you, crazy? Don't you know there are people

                   dying out there?!?

          MICRO: Okay, got it! I'm sure that'll cheer the patients up.

          BEEJ: Knowing that people are dying is gonna cheer them up?

          MICRO: No, knowing that Hawkeye hasn't regained his sanity

                 will, though. --Oh no, choppers!


                          The Dukes of M*A*S*H

          KERNEL POTHEAD: What choppers? I don't hear anything!

          BEEJ: ...I don't think it's choppers, Kernel —— look!

          POTHEAD: Great Horny Toads! A commie car!

          BEEJ: A what?

          POTHEAD: Well, it's red, isn't it?

          BEEJ: No, no, it's orange! You're getting to be like Frank.

          FRANK: AAAAAAAH! Commies! Commies!

          MICRO: What do you think they'll say to us, your kernelship?

          POTHEAD: I think they'll say ——


          BEEJ: Funny, that's what I thought they'd say, too.

          (The car screeches to a halt seven inches in front of the motley

           crew, and a black-haired country boy climbs out a window.)

          DUKE: Hi! I'm Duke, and this is my brother, Beau.


          BEEJ: Does he know how to say anything else?

          DUKE: Yeah; sometimes he preceeds that mess with, "Let's do it!"

          HAWK: What are you, crazy? Don't you know there are people

                dying out there?!?

          DUKE: What's his problem?

          BEEJ: Monomania. He's crazy about mononucleosis.

          POTHEAD: Look, you hootinannies, this here is a M*A*S*H unit,

                   so why don't you just skeedaddle, pronto.

          DUKE: Well, whadayaknow! He speaks our language!

          BEEJ: Oh yeah? Well, where are you from?

          DUKE: Hazardous Country.

          BEEJ: Well, then, what are you doing in Korea?

          DUKE: KOREA!?! I knew we should've taken a left at the Alps!

          (Suddenly, a police car drives up and does a 90-degree skid-

           stop just four inches in front of Microwave)

          MICRO: AAAH! Help, your Kerneldom!

          KERNEL P: Say what, boy? I ain't goin' near that thing!

                          The Dukes of M*A*S*H

          (The door opens, and a rather dumb-looking sherriff comes out)

          ROSCOE: Freeze!

          POTHEAD: Who is that?

          DUKE: Don't worry. That's just Sherriff Roscoe M. Coalmine.

          BEEJ: Is that so?!? Well, what are you doing here, Roscoe?

          ROSCOE: Freeze!

          BEEJ: What are you talking about? It's summer time!

          MICRO: ...Oh oh, choppers!

          BEEJ: Not quite...We're under attack!

          FRANK: AAAAAAAH! Commies! Commies!

          BEEJ: Funny, I didn't know Frank was a monomaniac, too.

          POTHEAD: Wait a minute! Those aren't Communists!

          BEEJ (With a look of "Oh, my God!" on his face): Oh, my God!

               It's a flying saucer!!

          POTTER: Not quite; it's a flying disk....

          HAWK: What are you, crazy? Don't you know ——

          BEEJ: There are people dying out there! I know! I know! Haven't

                you figured out what's happening yet?!?

          ALL: WE'RE UNDER ATTACK BY TRSDOS 87.4!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


             Well, so sue me! This is a computing magazine, and that was

          the only computerish ending I could think up!


                                TRaSh-80 HARDWEAR

          MODEL VII TRaSh-80

             Our plagiary advertizement last month really worked! Some

          Goon-head sent in a completely assembled home-made femtocom-

          puter, we took it from him, and now we have the Model VII!

          Although it uses the improved Z-81 Femtoprocessing chip, it

          is neither upward nor downward compatible with any model I

          through VI. This is because the Z-81 chip uses an assembly

          language which is totally alien to the Z-80, and which is

          almost as totally alien to assembly language itself.

             At first, the machine code-translation might look like

          Pascal, but you'll soon find that it isn't. We call the lan-

          guage, "Pythagoras," but you can call it anything that's at

          a right-angle with this name.

             PRICE: one trisection of an angle with just a compass and


             Now, you too can program your femtocomputer in world-famous

          "Invader" programming language. This is the language that all

          those arcade games use that's been kept a secret for so many

          years. And you don't even have to load it in from disk! Just

          turn it on, and you'll see the message, "SHIP SIZE?"

             PRICE: the same as that of a Space Invaders machine

                               The TRaSh-80 Company

                               5746 Sunset Blvd.

                               Los Angeles, CA 90028

                            Dial 1-(800)-555-DUMB


                             MARS ROVER ADVENTURE

             A Mars rover is not a dog from the planet Mars, you dip!

          It's a robot tracker that is used to relay information back to

          good ol' Earth. They sent the first and last one up in 1982,

          but since it was self-controlled, no one really got a chance

          to "play" with it.

             And so, hearing the anguished cries of the Martian millions,

          Pinecone software developed an Adventure game that simulates

          down to the last detail every action and encounter of the Mars

          Rover. Actually, the term "Adventure" shouldn't really apply,

          since the only obstacles the Rover has to overcome are big

          rocks and deep canyons.

             Pinecone software was determined not so much to make the

          game fun  as  to make the game realistic. Pre-programmed onto

          the disk or tape it comes with is a detailed map of the entire

          surface of Mars, in machine-readable code, of course.

             By now you're probably wondering how the program could load

          in the Rover's map location each turn from tape, so I'll tell

          ya.: the response time from each user-input is fixed at ten

          minutes! This is not a case of bad programming; according to

          Pinecone Software: "It takes five minutes for the radio signal

          to reach Mars, and five minutes for the response to come back.

          Hence, the ten-minute delay."

             There isn't much you can really say about this program, ex-

          cept that it's accurate. I'm really surprised that Pinecone

          would market something like this, and not tell the author that

          it should be submitted as an article. So, as a compensation,

          I have printed up the first two lines of the program: █
        │ 4A00: CDC901    CALL    01C9H │
        │                               │
        │ 4A03: 3E30      LD      A,30H │


                              PINECONE SOFTWARE

          MARS ROVER ADVENTURE: Level II         5642 K (tape or disk)
                                Models I, III, & V

             In the Cosmos, there are BILLIONS and BILLIONS of stars.

          And around one of these stars stands a lonely desert planet,

          whose only inhabitant is a robotic rover from another planet,

          closer to its star and inhabited by intelligent life. Do you

          want to control this robotic "Mars Rover?" Well, it is very

          intelligent; smart enough, in fact, to understand English

          sentences. Oh, sure, it takes ten minutes to respond from your

          command, but who the ---- cares?

             PRICE: Just get a subscription to "Pinecone Monthly".

          BASIC-ON-BASIC: Level II          32 K (tape or disk)
                          Model I thru V    BASIC

             The De-compiler comes through again! This fully debugged

          BASIC version of BASIC will have your programs running slower

          than ever! Our other big program this month, "Mars Rover Ad-

          venture," is designed with this exact concept, written itself

          in its own built in version of BASIC on top of BASIC. Try

          getting both programs, and watch the delays run on into hours!

             PRICE: Less than "Mars Rover Adventure" since it is already

          a part of that program in case you didn't know, you twit.

                                 Pinecone Software

                                 1234 Any Street

                             No Man's Land, OH (AKA Toledo)




             As you are already aware, unless you were living on the moon

          for the last four years, PTI is the leading distributor of im-

          aginary software, such as the TMS-8F, AlbatrossDOS 1.1, and

          FISHNet, not that FISHNet or the TMS-8F are software or any-

          thing like that. The anonymous leader of PTI, Scott Nolan

          Adama, has been raking in the money from the sale of zap pro-

          grams that fix any one of the 2,000 intentional errors in Al-

          batrossDOS 1.1, which has been pirated at a slower-than-average


             Okay, now that I've plagiarized everything you know from

          80-Microcomputing, I can get down to beezwax. Scot has recent-

          ly announced the release of his "Oh, man!" program package,

          which is a collection of a bunch of different programs, all

          written by the same author, centered around the same subject,

          and different only in title. The programs are:

             MAGMA MAN: fight off creatures in a labyrinth with magma

             MINE MAN: fight off creatures in a labyrinth with iron ore

             MAZED MAN: fight off creatures in a labyrinth with little

          shots that come from your arms

             MOON MAN: play Goon Cresta, Lunar Lander, and Lunar Life-


             PACK MAN: Go on a backpacking trip to mount Sidney

             All of these programs display the simple message, "Ha! You

          got ripped off!" at the beginning of the program, then lock

          up. I guess Freud was right: it's the simple things that count! █


                          THE REAL-TIME CLOCK COMPANY

             The real-time clock company, the company that brought you

          so much pain and grief trying to use that internal time clock

          as a stopwatch, announces its most accurate timekeeper ever:

                         "THE SWISS MOVEMENT I"

             This little gem of a clock fits within half the space of

          the TRaSh-80's old real-time clock, and is more accurate than

          ever before. This is mostly because it's actually two differ-

          ent clock components crammed into the same space, creating the

          world-famous Swiss Movement combination of the present. It

          combines the new, modern quartz vibrator system for digial

          accuracy, along with the old 21-jewel spring-and-gear combina-

          tion for analog accuracy.

             The resulting clock can be put either in the TRaSh-80's

          expansion interface, or worn around the users wrist if he

          or she works at a zoo or train station. The resulting swiss

          movement combination is so powerful that if the timekeeper

          chip is shielded from  a light source, it will cause a nearby

          intelligent person to unknowingly insult the person next to


             The price...well, send for our catalog or call us. Along

          with quartz-movement clocks, we also make limestone, basalt,

          and sludge movement.

                               The Real-Time Clock Company

               "We guarantee our clocks will be right at least twice a day"

                                  12:15 Time Square

                               Watch Out, NE 10017

                            call "Time" for our number



             Way back in 1917, a little country called, "Russia" decided

          to have its own internal Marxist revolution. The Red army de-

          feated the White army, and the country soon became communist.

             Today, a communist revolution is happening almost every

          week. Communism seems to be an international fad that is sewwp-

          ing the entire globe (The world, of course - not the little

          globe in your history class). And so, because of this, a small

          company called, "Roosky Software" devised a clever program that

          will allow its user to start a communist revolution right in

          his own home.

             The program, called (guess what?) "Revolt," is a 16-K BASIC

          program that sells for $29.95. The reason for this high price,

          according to Roosky Software, is that "Since the useless laws

          against program piracy have been repealed, we might as well

          make some sort of profit off of the few original copies we sell."

             The program starts off with a password-like system, which

          instead says, "MAKE A SPEACH? _". The user then enters the 3

          word "speach" (sic) which the program's author has insisted

          remain undevulged in this article.

             So, after typing in "MARX WAS RIGHT!" the program begins.

          You start out with x number of soldiers, y number of weapons,

          and z number of supplies. If anyone can decipher these numbers,

          please tell me what they mean. After all, I'm interested in

          finding out how the game works myself!

             Actually, there's probably some code the x, y, and z are

          in which is explained in the documentation. However, mine is

          a pirated copy I took from a TRaSh-80 store, and I didn't

          think I'd need to bother with documentation.

             One final comment on this program: huh? █


                            ROOSKY SOFTWARE

             Isn't it amazing that this advertizement comes right out

          after an article about one of our products?! Actually, this

          was the editors idea. He said, "Oh yeah, now I remember! They

         want to put in an ad!" right after he put in the article and

          read it over. By the way, "Revolt!" sells for only $29.95

          (Moscow residents add 0% sales tax).

             We have over thirty thousand programs in stock, including

          eighteen versions of, "Vertical line," a nice little program

          that comes straight out of the Level I manual. So send for

          your Cadillog today!


                     Coming soon from Bad-Lode Software:

                                Goon Cresta for model I

                                Followers' Adventure

                                Another Another Star-Trak Game


          "You might not get a bad load from Bad-Lode...."


                           The Programmer's Guilt



                           "The Vial of Doom"

                          The greatest Adventure

                            ever written...


                         BLINKY, PINKY, INKY, AND CLYDE

             A long time ago, in a land far, far away, a company named,

          "Bally" decided to get into the video game scene, and created

          their "Midway" division. This soon came out with "Space In-

          vaders" and later, "Galaxian," a game which set the style for

          arcade games to come.

             In Galaxian, your rank was represented symbolically by lit-

          tle flags in the lower right-hand corner. This was a good idea,

          and they wanted to impliment it in another game. But what game

          could they do?

             Then, they remembered an old game of theirs called "Dodgem"

          (AKA "Crash"). Why not make a more sophisticated version of

          that? Let's see...four enemies instead of one...a complex maze

          in which you do more than just change lanes...they drop pieces

          of fruit instead of "X"es...and to top it off, you can eat

          them, some of the time.

             The result almost everyone is familiar with: Pac Dude. (In

          case you're interested, Midway is a Japanese company, and "Pac"

          is Japanese for "Eat.") For a few years, the only good TRaSh-

          80 version of this game was "Scarf Dude" by the Cornhard dudes.

          Then game "Goblin Attack" by Big Hive. So then, I thought to

          myself, "Hey, BASIC isn't as slow as some people think! Why

          don't I prove that to everyone!"

             And so I did. I wrote "Blinky, Pinky, Inky, and Clyde,"

          which is so close to Pac Dude that even the sounds are the same,

          which is amazing since the program uses no USR or LPRINT

          routines. The game's in high-resolution color, and does this

          perfectly even without a high-res board or a crayon-kit color

          mod. Yes, it fit's in 16 K, and yes, it's listed on the next

          pages. And by the way, to telexineses objects by thought, you


Author's notes from 2014:
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