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Cratedigging

DrG

Active Member
As I recall, I convinced a supervisor to send me to a course about them (a one day thing) [edited to add that they gave you one at the course]. This was not terribly easy to do since I was not working in a related field at all. But he was technologically inclined and we would play around with the VAX and PDP-11/73s and such.

I remember once that I "hacked" the cookie file on the VAX so it would display messages suggesting that I deserved a raise whenever he logged in - he got a laugh out of it.....ok what else is in this crate?
 
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DrG

Active Member
I remember this and I got it when these chips were very new and VERY cool. It may not have been right when they came out as I probably could not afford it (see date code? is it a 91 year? seems older from memory, but then 1991 does not seem like 28 years ago). These chips survived well and the more modern versions are still around and are very cheap....you can't say that about too many chips from back then...they found a niche and did it well I guess.

ISDN1.jpg

ISDN2.jpg

isdn3.jpg
 

DrG

Active Member
Don't remember too much about this burglar alarm - probably some simple SCR circuit. But I liked these kits and they were cheap, came with a schematic (I bet I have it for this one in a file somewhere), worked (well basically) and usually had, at least a paragraph, of theory/operation. There were *lots* of them. They were like Johnson Smith catalog stuff for nerds.

DBA1.jpg


DBA2.jpg
 

DrG

Active Member
This one I do remember well - a TV Jammer and it really did work (although you needed to be close to the TV for maximum effect). I distinctly remember "torturing" my nephew...."The TV will not work until you go get me a coke from the kitchen!"

Instead of learning how I did it, he simply felt powerless, submitted, and probably hated me for it - Oh well, tough love and all that crap :)

TVJ1.jpg

TVJ2.jpg

NOTE: It is not legal to use these devices in most places and I do not condone their use.
 

KeepItSimpleStupid

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
DrG PDP=11's . a friend was working for a company who 's boos kept typing LP instead of LP: He would create files named "LP." instead of printing to the line printer. I went in with a disk editor and changed a bit in the directory that wasn't normally accessible. It may have been "File may not be deleted or extended" or some such thing. So there was a zero block file called LP, so no more problems for him to fix.

Me and two friends were the main speakers at a local DECUS meeting. We each took as aspect of file systems and talked about it
Since where I worked had source files for RSTS-11, we had fun making modifications. I orchestrated a design of a better terminal handler especially for CRT terminals and another friend coded it.

Hacking in high school got me a job there. I could crash a system in about 30 seconds.

I used an 11/20, 11/50 and later I self-maintained 11/2, 11/23 and 11/23+ systems running RT-11. DEC had a nice fixed price repair deal. You send a card and you get another back immediately for a fixed repair cost. There were only two of us that could do those repairs though,

The 11/45 had a really nasty problem. It would drop a bit in the Processor Status Word when it switched modes (user and Kernal). I found that issue, From there DEC service was able to fix it.
 
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DrG

Active Member
There is still more in this box but here is the last one for now.....
AClinefilter.jpg

I bought this in the days of the TRS-80 Model 1. Those machines would, with outstanding regularity, crash. Now, the power supplies were minimal for the job and they used silver connectors (great conductor but even better at tarnishing). This device did very little to help as I recall. They built it so you could not easily get inside to see what they put in there. As I learned more about electronics I wondered more, but never did open it up.
 

DrG

Active Member
DrG PDP=11's . a friend was working for a company who 's boos kept typing LP instead of LP: He would create files named "LP." instead of printing to the line printer. I went in with a disk editor and changed a bit in the directory that wasn't normally accessible. It may have been "File may not be deleted or extended" or some such thing. So there was a zero block file called LP, so no more problems for him to fix.

Me and two friends were the main speakers at a local DECUS meeting. We each took as aspect of file systems and talked about it
Since where I worked had source files for RSTS-11, we had fun making modifications. I orchestrated a design of a better terminal handler especially for CRT terminals and another friend coded it.

Hacking in high school got me a job there. I could crash a system in about 30 seconds.

I used an 11/20, 11/50 and later I self-maintained 11/2, 11/23 and 11/23+ systems running RT-11. DEC had a nice fixed price repair deal. You send a card and you get another back immediately for a fixed repair cost. There were only two of us that could do those repairs though,

The 11/45 had a really nasty problem. It would drop a bit in the Processor Status Word when it switched modes (user and Kernal). I found that issue, From there DEC service was able to fix it.
Good times. I think you have/had much more experience with them than I did, but I used the 8 and 11 all the time in the lab. The 11/73 was actually a pretty good machine - the 8 less so. We used to not allow the DECites in for so-called PM because they would screw it up. I do remember learning the code to toggle in the boot sequence for the 8 (we would tape it on the wall). What so many don't remember is that if you were a scientist, there were just not that many computers that were available to you - at least that is how I saw it...so that is what I learned...and their FORTRAN was not bad.
 

KeepItSimpleStupid

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
The PDP-8 when I was in high school, but located at a college. They had a PDP-11 running Unix which i also learned. I really don;t know any modern languages except some varients of BASIC, LabView and C. LISP was the worst. SNOBOL and COBOL was just plain wierd. APL was strange calculator.
 

Pommie

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I've still got one around somewhere but not the Plus one. A smaller black one - from memory. I finally threw the books out about 4 years ago.

Mike.
 

atferrari

Well-Known Member
I've still got one around somewhere but not the Plus one. A smaller black one - from memory. I finally threw the books out about 4 years ago.

Mike.
The 16B (IIRC), maybe?

I learnt PICs with it and the 16C57.
 

DrG

Active Member
The 16B (IIRC), maybe?

I learnt PICs with it and the 16C57.
There was, apparently a PICSTART Plus that was black.

and the PICSTART 16B1 looks a lot like my 16C

I've heard of a few others like the PICSTART 16/17

The 16C did work but they would send out several 40-PIN fixchips for it.

In any event, my 16C has very little value. I will take the power supply (which looks pretty good), the cable the chip and that is about it - if I feel really industrious, I may try to salvage some parts off the board. Alas, this is headed for the dumpster (which is what more normal people did years ago). I could *bay it but for what - $20 with shipping headaches? Maybe I will just drop it off at the thrift shop intact - that will probably cause some eye rolls :)

I have a PICkit 3 and a PICkit 4 (which I have not completely integrated into my tools) and that will handle all of my needs for the near future.
 
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rjenkinsgb

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
Coincidentally, a few days ago whilst digging for a spare IC, I happened to come across some of the old EPROM PICs we used to use for development work.
The earliest ones are 25 years old, from the date code.

We never had the Microchip programmers, we used ALL-11 universal ones of various generations.

IMG_9815a.jpg
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
Coincidentally, a few days ago whilst digging for a spare IC, I happened to come across some of the old EPROM PICs we used to use for development work.
The earliest ones are 25 years old, from the date code.
The 16C71, a VERY popular device back then, as it was the only one with an A2D converter inside :D

I believe I might have a couple of them somewhere, and an (expensive) windowed one I bought.

I think it was a bit of a 'culture shock' when they released the 16F877 with pretty well everything in it, 40 pins and electrically erasable using the same EEPROM technology as the 16C84 and 16F84, which were the only previous electrically erasable ones (and were just versions of the same device anyway).
 

DrG

Active Member
I never had to do anything "serious" with them. It was much more about "these are cool, how do they work".

I took this pic a few minutes ago.

BC1_20191016_112009_HDR.jpg

It is a binary clock that ran off of the 60Hz voltage "tick" after it was stepped down with a transformer (pretty accurate actually). I was tickled pink when it worked and still have the code print out somewhere.

BC2_20191016_112036_HDR.jpg

If I am not mistaken, that is a 1993 date code. That means that the circuit has been on a breadboard for ~25+ years - a personal best!! :)
 

gophert

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I never had to do anything "serious" with them. It was much more about "these are cool, how do they work".

I took this pic a few minutes ago.

View attachment 121161

It is a binary clock that ran off of the 60Hz voltage "tick" after it was stepped down with a transformer (pretty accurate actually). I was tickled pink when it worked and still have the code print out somewhere.

View attachment 121162

If I am not mistaken, that is a 1993 date code. That means that the circuit has been on a breadboard for ~25+ years - a personal best!! :)
Wow, 25-years in development - time to go to production!
 
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dr pepper

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I got a picstart when they first came out, that brings back memories.

I also had the atmel version that came in a Vhs video cassette case, I think it had a 2313 in it.
 

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