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Re: [midatlanticretro] Acquired a PDP-8/E

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  • David Riley
    ... It s been bandied about on cctalk in recent months. The two problems that most people cited were accuracy of reproduction (texture, color, shape, etc.)
    Message 1 of 91 , May 22 10:30 AM
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      On May 22, 2013, at 12:50 PM, "J. Alexander Jacocks" <jjacocks@...> wrote:

      >
      > Has anyone considered 3D printing the replacement handles and switches? I have access to a printer.

      It's been bandied about on cctalk in recent months. The two problems that most people cited were accuracy of reproduction (texture, color, shape, etc.) and sturdiness. Given the mechanical strain that the switches undergo, the latter seems to be the more valid concern; you can polish down the texture with some acetone or methylene chloride, which are of course not great to breathe.

      If you wanted to print a few out and try them out (or have someone try them out), I very much doubt you'd do any real harm to anything. It would certainly clear up a lot of speculation, and possibly suggest some improvements (e.g. maybe it's best to print or manually drill a hole for a metal pin if you print it rather than trying to make the plastic do all the work). I don't know where to get an accurate model for such a thing, though.

      It's nice to have accurate colors for a display reproduction, but for me, it's generally preferable just to have stuff work.


      - Dave
    • Dave McGuire
      ... OS/8 needs a random-access storage device; paper tape won t do it. Magnetic tape drives are *physically* sequential-access, of course, but the TU56 (for
      Message 91 of 91 , Jun 6, 2013
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        On 06/06/2013 12:54 PM, Kyle Owen wrote:
        > That looks like a nice product, but yes, it's certainly expensive. I've got
        > some FPGA background myself, along with several different microcontrollers,
        > so I may see about creating something that will work with my high-speed paper
        > tape interface. That could be considered an OS/8 storage device, yes?

        OS/8 needs a random-access storage device; paper tape won't do it.
        Magnetic tape drives are *physically* sequential-access, of course, but the
        TU56 (for example) is logically a random-access, block-oriented device. (with
        highly variable latency ;))

        > I would
        > have no idea how to go about writing a driver for it yet, but perhaps it'd be
        > in my best interest to start reading up on the commands for the card and then
        > learn more about OS/8. Do you have any suggestions on recommended reading for
        > this?

        If this was a generally-directed question...The book you want for "most
        things OS/8" is the "OS/8 Handbook". It is excellent. Try to find a paper
        copy if you can, but it's available in PDF on bitsavers:

        http://bitsavers.trailing-edge.com/pdf/dec/pdp8/os8/OS8_Handbook_Apr1974.pdf

        -Dave

        --
        Dave McGuire, AK4HZ
        New Kensington, PA
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