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The Icon Bar: News and features: NTK's take on BBC BASIC interpreter Brandy
 

NTK's take on BBC BASIC interpreter Brandy

Posted by Richard Goodwin on 16:54, 31/1/2002 | , , , , , ,
 
Just catching up on my reading and came across this in NTK's edition of January 25th. It's rare enough that RISC OS and Acorn stuff gets a mention outside the usual suspects, but when it's done with such humour it's an added bonus so I'll post the Tracking section in full for all to enjoy. There's even a link to ArgoNet user Dave Daniel's site at the bottom, for it is he who has ported BASIC V to Unix, Windows and, um, RISC OS in interpreter Brandy; and if you follow the second link there's some interesting Acorn history.

Who hasn't at some point yearned to write UNIX scripts in the Basic that came with the original 1982 BBC Computer? Everyone. Don't argue: everyone. BRANDY is a GPL'd port of BBC BASIC's last living descendant, BASIC V, to BSD/Unix, Windows/DOS, and RISCOS. From the PASCALish DEF PROC to the BBC's peculiar C-like indirection operators ! and ?, it's all here. Brandy's RISC version even has support for VDU 19 and SOUND commands - it's up to you to implement those under the other platforms. Best of all, it's had the USENET seal of approval from Sophie nee Roger Wilson, the one-woman once-man whirlwind who wrote the first BBC Basic in assembler as well as creating most of the original Atom, designing the BBC screen font, and sketching out the first ARM RISC processor instruction set. Nice she's letting other people get their hand in these days.

http://www.argonet.co.uk/users/dave_daniels/
- do hope it's not named after Brandon Butterworth
http://digital-guru.de/stage2/et/bigtime2.htm
- Sophie Creates An Industry


Source: NTK
 
  NTK's take on BBC BASIC interpreter Brandy
  (17:11 31/1/2002)
  John Hoare (20:46 31/1/2002)
    Iain Williamson (21:05 31/1/2002)
      Jason Tribbeck (22:02 31/1/2002)
        Anonymous (09:53 1/2/2002)
          Anonymous (09:58 1/2/2002)
            Mr Jake Monkeyson (12:04 1/2/2002)
              Guest (13:51 1/2/2002)
                Richard Goodwin (14:48 1/2/2002)
                  Guest (15:40 1/2/2002)
                    Andrew Weston (16:26 1/2/2002)
                      Richard Goodwin (17:25 1/2/2002)
                        mark quint (17:35 1/2/2002)
                          Annraoi (20:12 1/2/2002)
                            John Hoare (00:10 2/2/2002)
                              Guest (00:15 2/2/2002)
                                ed (22:16 21/8/2005)
                                  ed (22:25 21/8/2005)
 
Jason Tribbeck Message #89978, posted at 17:11, 31/1/2002
Unregistered user Brandy looks interesting; the other site looked awful - I hate it when someone tries to be really clever 'let's put everything in lower case because i think it looks cool'. Especially when it appears as very small text in a narrow column on a large screen with a nasty background.

A much more readable one is available from http://www.poppyfields.net/acorn/docs/armdocs/hauser.shtml
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
John Hoare Message #89979, posted at 20:46, 31/1/2002, in reply to message #89978
Unregistered user The ARM wasn't the world's first RISC processor though, as stated in the 'Missing the big time' article, was it? (I can't remember what it was, but wasn't it IBM in the 70's or something? Or was there one before that?)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Iain Williamson Message #89980, posted at 21:05, 31/1/2002, in reply to message #89979
Unregistered user You're testing my memory now too. I think IBM came up with the concept, but obviously at that time wouldn't have been able to make a chip out of it. The ARM still wasn't the first IC RISC processor though - but it was the first one to be commercially available.

That's the received wisdom at least.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Tribbeck Message #89981, posted at 22:02, 31/1/2002, in reply to message #89980
Unregistered user The very first processors were RISC - but they didn't know it then. It was only when processors started having lots of instructions that the names RISC and CISC was born.

As an aside, the minimum number of instructions for a processor with one operand is 2. Now, that's RISC!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Anonymous Message #89982, posted at 09:53, 1/2/2002, in reply to message #89981
Unregistered user Sophie Wilson was once a man?
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Anonymous Message #89983, posted at 09:58, 1/2/2002, in reply to message #89982
Unregistered user Yes - she's quite famous for it in the developer circles. There was another sex change (man to woman) in the industry a few years back, but I forget which company she was in.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Mr Jake Monkeyson Message #89984, posted at 12:04, 1/2/2002, in reply to message #89983
Unregistered user What what what what what??? I never knew that!

I wonder how many jokes about masking out bits, etc, Sophie had to put up with...
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Guest Message #89985, posted at 13:51, 1/2/2002, in reply to message #89984
Unregistered user I thought it was well known that a bloke working at Acorn in the early days walked into work on day as a woman. I remember reading an interview with Hermann Hauser and he mentioned it - but didn't say who it was. I didn't relise it was Sophie Wilson until I read this.
She probably didn't have to put up with many jokes - remember Acorn was full of very intelligent and eccentric people...
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Richard Goodwin Message #89986, posted at 14:48, 1/2/2002, in reply to message #89985
Unregistered user My favourite ill-informed comment that someone told me about was a news story where the reporter said that Sophie was one of the only girls to attend an all-boys school. Someone didn't do their research...
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Guest Message #89987, posted at 15:40, 1/2/2002, in reply to message #89986
Unregistered user I think the ARM was the first *commercial* RISC processor. And you can have a CPU with *one* instruction that will work - decrement by one and jump if non-zero. Search for OSIC on Google :)

(And quite frankly, ARM is only RISCish these days...)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Andrew Weston Message #89988, posted at 16:26, 1/2/2002, in reply to message #89987
Unregistered user That story was right Rich. She worked for Acorn!!
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Richard Goodwin Message #89989, posted at 17:25, 1/2/2002, in reply to message #89988
Unregistered user The story wasn't right, because she wasn't a she when she was at school/college. Hence, not the only girl at an all boys school.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
mark quint Message #89990, posted at 17:35, 1/2/2002, in reply to message #89989
Unregistered user not in body anyway :o
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Annraoi Message #89991, posted at 20:12, 1/2/2002, in reply to message #89990
Unregistered user Regarding first RISC.

IBM did a research project which produced a research machine (called the 801, after the room it was designed in). IBM did NOT release a computer based on it at that stage (it was in the 1970's AFAIK).

The ARM was the FIRST commercially available RISC chip (in 1985, though the research started in 1983 and the ARM-2 (and Archimedes) took a while longer to develope (1987). Acorn had a development system that could be hooked up to a BBC Model B (using the Tube) but ALSO released a device called "Springboard" which allowed development of ARM software on a PC.

The Archimedes was the first mass market (!) RISC computer (although I think Sun Sparc workstations were being bought by universities at around the same time), IBM's first commercial RISC computer being the PC-RT which came after the Archimedes.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
John Hoare Message #89992, posted at 00:10, 2/2/2002, in reply to message #89991
Unregistered user Would now be a fun moment to bring up Acorn's full page ad against Apple's RISC processor claims? :-)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Guest Message #89993, posted at 00:15, 2/2/2002, in reply to message #89992
Unregistered user Yes it would!

Mike
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Ed Avis Message #89994, posted by ed at 22:16, 21/8/2005, in reply to message #89993
Member
Posts: 2
Dave Daniels's website seems to have disappeared. Does anyone have a current copy of the brandy source, or the URI of the new site?
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Ed Avis Message #89995, posted by ed at 22:25, 21/8/2005, in reply to message #89994
Member
Posts: 2
It might be possible to contact Dave Daniels on comp.sys.acorn.programming. In the meantime, the current website for brandy seems to be <http://jaguar.orpheusweb.co.uk/branpage.html> and there is an interview with the author at <http://www.drobe.co.uk/riscos/artifact126.html>.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 

The Icon Bar: News and features: NTK's take on BBC BASIC interpreter Brandy