[Coco] Any news on the so called CoCo4 or Next CoCo

Little John sales at gimechip.com
Sat Oct 23 08:40:05 EDT 2010

Frank, it would seem that recreating the cartridge port could be done using 
the parallel printer port and some "multiplexing" circuitry. At least as far 
as running "program paks" - attaching other devices that require the E, Q, 
etc. might be a bit more of a chore. Of course, the parallel printer port 
itself will probably vanish from motherboards altogether in the near future, 
although even my newest quad core still has one. Rather than Jeffs emulator, 
I have been using David Keils along with FreeDOS - i have it set to boot 
straight into the emulator - boots up pretty quickly.
(C.W. - thought I'd try your name suggestion...)

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Frank Swygert" <farna at att.net>
To: <coco at maltedmedia.com>
Sent: Saturday, October 23, 2010 7:24 AM
Subject: Re: [Coco] Any news on the so called CoCo4 or Next CoCo

> Sounds good, but the way they both work could be a problem. Now "building" 
> a "CoCo4" with "DECB4" enhancements in software then committing it to 
> hardware would work. The hardware just needs to be based on readily 
> available output, like standard 600x480 VGA at a minimum instead of analog 
> RGB like the CoCo3. Maybe a composite output option, but with VGA monitors 
> so cheap nowadays is that really necessary? I'm still of the mindset that 
> using a standard PC motherboard with integrated emulator/OS (or native 
> coded emulator under stripped down DOS or Linux -- Windows brings in too 
> much overhead) is the quickest, easiest, and cheapest way to go. If the 
> emulator can be integrated with the OS much like DECB is in the CoCo 
> everything should boot up rather quickly. I'm sure there could be -- even 
> needs to be -- 
> some parallel development. Otherwise you end up with more than one version 
> of "DECB4" that aren't fully compatible with each other. Not good!! So I 
> would think emulator first, then commit that to FPGA.
> It's not hard to use a stripped down version of DOS and Jeff Vavasour's 
> DOS emulator like that now. I tried it on an old Pentium 1 laptop, but 
> unfortunately it was an old HP with a proprietary video driver of some 
> sort that never would work right. I may try it on one of the Athlon boxes 
> I have just for kicks. An old P3 or P4 laptop might be better for most 
> users though. And if you're concerned about usage, have it come up with a 
> multi boot menu then choose Windows (or Linux) or CoCo. Then you could 
> have a CoCo to play with AND a machine to use like a netbook. The P3 or a 
> Celeron is marginal for any heavy work with Windows, but would still make 
> a good portable internet computer. And you could download stuff to a 
> shared drive then reboot into the Coco.
> Legacy hardware is easy to emulate. Recreating the cartridge connector can 
> be difficult, and I agree is where the expense would be. The expansion 
> pins on the DE1 might be configurable to mimic the cart connector, then a 
> simple adapter board would be all that's necessary. A PCI slot card could 
> be made also, but would cost more. I looked at a parallel port and I'm 
> pretty sure there isn't enough pins of the right configuration to fully 
> emulate a cartridge connector. Would be nice if an adapter for the 
> existing PP would work though!
> --------------
> Date: Fri, 22 Oct 2010 23:09:04 -0400
> From: "RJLCyberPunk" <cyberpunk at prtc.net>
> Maybe the project should be chanelled so it can satisfy both camps. A 
> fully
> emulated version and a hardware run one then?
> -- 
> Frank Swygert
> Publisher, "American Motors Cars"
> Magazine (AMC)
> For all AMC enthusiasts
> http://www.amc-mag.com
> (free download available!)
> --
> Coco mailing list
> Coco at maltedmedia.com
> http://five.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/coco 

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