RetroChallenge 2012 Winter Warmup

7:57 PM 1/7/12 - The Final Countdown?

It has been a long RC day. It began around 7 A.M. when I awoke to sound of Frell urinating on the living room carpet. I imagine he was thinking, "Now maybe they'll take me seriously when I'm whining early in the morning!" Poor fellow, he really had to go. It would've been nice if he had done it on the vinyl in the kitchen, though.

So, after cleaning that up, I set out to get the Disk-Video Interface hooked up to the Model 100. First I had a proper rummage in the "storage" room, and managed to turn these up:

I then set about mating the two together. The cable for connecting them is a bit oddball:

It is a 40 pin cable with a hdd type connector on the D-VI end, and this IC connector on the Model 100 end. Zif socket here. Lift the arm, plant cable, lower arm.

I'm glad I found the manual for the D-VI as I would have had no clue how to try to get the two talking. The process is thus: Turn on model 100, turn on D-VI and wait for it to boot off its system disk, press the RESET button on the Model 100 to clear its RAM and load "disk BASIC" to memory. This is where things dont work. The D-VI gets word from the Tandy that this is supposed to happen, so the floppy drive spools up. And that's it, it just runs forever. This is what it looks like when it is not working:

After trying both of the cables I have several times, I decided to crack the case and try to re-seat connectors. Most of this was to no avail except once where proper communication took place. I took the opportunity to create a document:

Thinking it was fixed, I put it all back together. Then I took it apart again and tried everything I could think of to get them on speaking terms. I am out of ideas. I would consider trying to replace the cable but it is so oddball I don't think I'll ever find one. I do have extra 40 pin cables, and I can find the IC connector online, but without the tool to put it together, I still think I'm out of luck. So. Not sure what to do about that.

At this point, tired of banging my head against the wall, I decided to noodle around in BASIC. I discovered that the 100 will beep. Then I discovered that I could control the tone and the length. One thing lead to another and:

Sorry about the crappy video. It is hard to get good lighting to record from the 100's screen in the first place, and then YouTube made it worse somehow.

I can post the code, too, if anybody is interested.

Anyway, thar she blows!


2012 Winter Warmup