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Acorn Electron
The ACORN ELECTRON is a budget version of the BBC Micro educational/home computer made by Acorn Computers Ltd . It has 32 kilobytes of RAM , and its ROM includes BBC BASIC v2 along with its operating system . The Electron was able to save and load programs onto audio cassette via a supplied converter cable that connected it to any standard tape recorder that had the correct sockets. It was capable of basic graphics, and could display onto either a television set, a colour ( RGB
RGB
) monitor or a "green screen " monitor. For a short period, the Electron was reportedly the best selling micro in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
. CONTENTS * 1 History * 2 Popular upgrades * 2.1 Acorn Plus 1 * 2.1.1 Compatibility * 2.2 Acorn Plus 2 * 2.3 Acorn Plus 3 * 2.3.1 ADFS quirks * 2.4 First Byte Joystick Interface * 2.5 P.R.E.S. Advanced Plus 3 * 2.6 P.R.E.S
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Acorn Computers
ACORN COMPUTERS LTD. was a British computer company established in Cambridge
Cambridge
, England, in 1978. The company produced a number of computers which were especially popular in the UK , including the Acorn Electron
Acorn Electron
and the Acorn Archimedes . Acorn's BBC Micro computer dominated the UK educational computer market during the 1980s. It is more known for its BBC Micro model B computer than for its other products. Though the company was broken up into several independent operations in 1998, its legacy includes the development of reduced instruction set computing (RISC) personal computers. One of its operating systems , RISC OS
RISC OS
, continues to be developed by RISC OS
RISC OS
Open . Some of Acorn's former subsidiaries lived on: ARM Holdings technology is dominant in the mobile phone and personal digital assistant (PDA) microprocessor market. Acorn is sometimes referred to as the "British Apple " and has been compared to Fairchild Semiconductor for being a catalyst for start-ups. In 2010, the company was listed by David Meyer in ZDNet as number nine in a feature of top ten fallen "Dead IT giants". Many British IT professionals gained their early experiences on Acorns, which were often more technically advanced than commercially successful US hardware
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8-bit
In computer architecture , 8-BIT integers , memory addresses , or other data units are those that are 8 bits (1 octet ) wide. Also, 8-bit CPU and ALU architectures are those that are based on registers , address buses , or data buses of that size. 8-BIT is also a generation of microcomputers in which 8-bit microprocessors were the norm. The IBM System/360 introduced byte-addressable memory with 8-bit bytes, as opposed to bit-addressable or decimal digit-addressable or word-addressable memory, although its general purpose registers were 32 bits wide, and addresses were contained in the lower 24 bits of those addresses. Different models of System/360 had different internal data path widths; the IBM System/360 Model 30 (1965) implemented the 32-bit System/360 architecture, but had an 8 bit native path width, and performed 32-bit arithmetic 8 bits at a time. The first widely adopted 8-bit microprocessor was the Intel 8080 , being used in many hobbyist computers of the late 1970s and early 1980s, often running the CP/M
CP/M
operating system ; it had 8-bit data words and 16-bit addresses. The Zilog Z80 (compatible with the 8080) and the Motorola 6800
Motorola 6800
were also used in similar computers
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Microcomputer
A MICROCOMPUTER is a small, relatively inexpensive computer with a microprocessor as its central processing unit (CPU). It includes a microprocessor, memory, and minimal input/output (I/O) circuitry mounted on a single printed circuit board . Microcomputers became popular in the 1970s and 1980s with the advent of increasingly powerful microprocessors. The predecessors to these computers, mainframes and minicomputers , were comparatively much larger and more expensive (though indeed present-day mainframes such as the IBM System z machines use one or more custom microprocessors as their CPUs). Many microcomputers (when equipped with a keyboard and screen for input and output) are also personal computers (in the generic sense). The abbreviation _micro_ was common during the 1970s and 1980s, but has now fallen out of common usage. CONTENTS * 1 Origins * 2 Colloquial use of the term * 3 Description * 4 History * 4.1 TTL precursors * 4.2 Early microcomputers * 4.3 Home computers * 5 See also * 6 Notes and references ORIGINSThe term _microcomputer_ came into popular use after the introduction of the minicomputer , although Isaac Asimov used the term microcomputer in his short story "The Dying Night" as early as 1956 (published in _The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction_ in July that year)
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Cassette Tape
The COMPACT CASSETTE or MUSICASSETTE (MC), also commonly called CASSETTE TAPE, AUDIO CASSETTE, or simply TAPE or CASSETTE, is an analog magnetic tape recording format for audio recording and playback . It was released by Philips in 1962, having been developed in Hasselt , Belgium . Compact cassettes come in two forms, either already containing content as a pre-recorded cassette, or as a fully recordable "blank" cassette. It was designed originally for dictation machines , but improvements in fidelity led the Compact Cassette to supplant the Stereo 8-track cartridge and reel-to-reel tape recording in most non-professional applications. Its uses ranged from portable audio to home recording to data storage for early microcomputers . The first cassette player (although mono) designed for use in car dashes was introduced in 1968. Between the early 1970s and the early 2000s, the cassette was one of the two most common formats for prerecorded music, first alongside the LP record and later the compact disc (CD). Compact Cassettes contain two miniature spools, between which a magnetically coated, polyester-type plastic film is passed and wound. These spools and their attendant parts are held inside a protective plastic shell
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Floppy Disk
A FLOPPY DISK, also called a FLOPPY, DISKETTE, or just DISK, is a type of disk storage composed of a disk of thin and flexible magnetic storage medium, sealed in a rectangular plastic enclosure lined with fabric that removes dust particles. Floppy disks are read and written by a FLOPPY DISK DRIVE (FDD). Floppy disks, initially as 8-inch (200 mm) media and later in 5¼-inch (133 mm) and 3½-inch (90 mm) sizes, were a ubiquitous form of data storage and exchange from the mid-1970s into the mid-2000s. By the late 2000s, computers were rarely manufactured with installed floppy disk drives; 3½-inch floppy disks can be used with an external USB
USB
floppy disk drive, but USB
USB
drives for 5¼-inch, 8-inch, and non-standard diskettes are rare to non-existent. These formats are usually handled by older equipment. While floppy disk drives still have some limited uses, especially with legacy industrial computer equipment , they have been superseded by data storage methods with much greater capacity, such as USB
USB
flash drives , flash storage cards , portable external hard disk drives , optical discs , ROM cartridges , and storage available through computer networks
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ROM Cartridge
A ROM CARTRIDGE, sometimes referred to simply as a CARTRIDGE or CART, is a removable enclosure containing ROM designed to be connected to a consumer electronics device such as a home computer , video game console and to a lesser extent, electronic musical instruments . ROM cartridges can be used to load software such as video games or other application programs. The cartridge slot could also be used for hardware additions, for example speech synthesis . Some cartridges had battery-backed static random-access memory , allowing a user to save data such as game progress or scores between uses. ROM cartridges allowed the user to rapidly load and access programs and data without the expense of a floppy drive, which was an expensive peripheral during the home computer era, and without using slow, sequential, and often unreliable Compact Cassette tape . An advantage for the manufacturer was the relative security of the software in cartridge form, which was difficult for end users to replicate. However, cartridges were expensive to manufacture compared to making a floppy disk or CD-ROM
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Operating System
An OPERATING SYSTEM (OS) is system software that manages computer hardware and software resources and provides common services for computer programs . All computer programs , excluding firmware , require an operating system to function. Time-sharing operating systems schedule tasks for efficient use of the system and may also include accounting software for cost allocation of processor time , mass storage , printing , and other resources. For hardware functions such as input and output and memory allocation , the operating system acts as an intermediary between programs and the computer hardware, although the application code is usually executed directly by the hardware and frequently makes system calls to an OS function or is interrupted by it. Operating systems are found on many devices that contain a computer – from cellular phones and video game consoles to web servers and supercomputers . The dominant desktop operating system is Microsoft Windows with a market share of around 83.3%. macOS by Apple Inc. is in second place (11.2%), and the varieties of Linux
Linux
is in third position (1.55%)
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Acorn MOS
Acorn 's MACHINE OPERATING SYSTEM (MOS) or OS is a discontinued computer operating system used in the Acorn BBC
BBC
computer range. It included support for four-channel sound and graphics, file system abstraction, and digital and analogue I/O including a daisy-chained expansion bus. The implementation was single-tasking, monolithic and non-reentrant . Versions 0.10 to 1.20 were used on the BBC Micro
BBC Micro
, version 1.00 on the Electron , version 2 was used on the B+, and versions 3 to 5 were used in the BBC Master Series range. The final BBC
BBC
computer, the BBC
BBC
A3000, didn't run this operating system (but it also included its "asterisk" command line interface), was 32-bit and ran RISC OS . That operating system used portions of the Acorn MOS
Acorn MOS
architecture and shared a number of characteristics (commands, VDU system) with the earlier 8-bit MOS. Versions 0 and 1 of the MOS were 16 KiB in size, written in 6502 machine code , and held in ROM on the motherboard . The upper quarter of the 16-bit address space (0xC000 to 0xFFFF) is reserved for its ROM code and I/O space
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Central Processing Unit
A CENTRAL PROCESSING UNIT (CPU) is the electronic circuitry within a computer that carries out the instructions of a computer program by performing the basic arithmetic , logical, control and input/output (I/O) operations specified by the instructions. The computer industry has used the term "central processing unit" at least since the early 1960s. Traditionally, the term "CPU" refers to a PROCESSOR, more specifically to its processing unit and control unit (CU), distinguishing these core elements of a computer from external components such as main memory and I/O circuitry. The form, design and implementation of CPUs have changed over the course of their history, but their fundamental operation remains almost unchanged. Principal components of a CPU include the arithmetic logic unit (ALU) that performs arithmetic and logic operations , processor registers that supply operands to the ALU and store the results of ALU operations, and a control unit that orchestrates the fetching (from memory) and execution of instructions by directing the coordinated operations of the ALU, registers and other components. Most modern CPUs are microprocessors , meaning they are contained on a single integrated circuit (IC) chip. An IC that contains a CPU may also contain memory, peripheral interfaces, and other components of a computer; such integrated devices are variously called microcontrollers or systems on a chip (SoC)
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MOS Technology
MOS TECHNOLOGY, INC. ("MOS" being short for Metal Oxide Semiconductor ), also known as CSG (COMMODORE SEMICONDUCTOR GROUP), was a semiconductor design and fabrication company based in Norristown, Pennsylvania , in the United States
United States
. It is most famous for its 6502 microprocessor and various designs for Commodore International 's range of home computers . CONTENTS* 1 History * 1.1 Mask fixing * 1.2 6502 family * 1.3 Commodore Semiconductor Group * 1.4 GMT Microelectronics * 2 Chip naming convention * 3 Products * 4 References * 5 External links HISTORY A 1973 MOS Technology
MOS Technology
advertisement highlighting their custom integrated circuit capabilities. MOS Technology, Inc. was originally started in 1969 by Allen-Bradley to provide a second source for electronic calculators and their chips designed by Texas Instruments (TI). In the early 1970s TI decided to release their own line of calculators, instead of selling just the chips inside them, and introduced them at a price that was lower than the price of the chipset alone. Many early chip companies were wiped out in the aftermath; those that survived did so by finding other chips to produce. MOS became a supplier to Atari
Atari
, producing a custom single-chip _ Pong _ system. Things changed dramatically in 1975
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MOS Technology 6502
The MOS TECHNOLOGY 6502 (typically _"sixty-five-oh-two"_ or _"six-five-oh-two"_) is an 8-bit microprocessor that was designed by a small team led by Chuck Peddle for MOS Technology . When it was introduced in 1975, the 6502 was, by a considerable margin, the least expensive full-featured microprocessor on the market. It initially sold for less than one-sixth the cost of competing designs from larger companies, such as Motorola and Intel , and caused rapid decreases in pricing across the entire processor market. Along with the Zilog Z80 , it sparked a series of projects that resulted in the home computer revolution of the early 1980s. Popular home video game consoles and computers, such as the Atari 2600 , Atari 8-bit family , Apple II , Nintendo Entertainment System , Commodore 64 , and others, used the 6502 or variations of the basic design. Soon after the 6502's introduction, MOS Technology was purchased outright by Commodore International , who continued to sell the microprocessor and licenses to other manufacturers. In the early days of the 6502, it was second-sourced by Rockwell and Synertek , and later licensed to other companies
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Megahertz
The HERTZ (symbol: Hz) is the derived unit of frequency in the International System of Units (SI) and is defined as one cycle per second . It is named for Heinrich Rudolf Hertz
Hertz
, the first person to provide conclusive proof of the existence of electromagnetic waves . Hertz
Hertz
are commonly expressed in multiples : kilohertz (103 Hz, kHz), megahertz (106 Hz, MHz), gigahertz (109 Hz, GHz), and terahertz (1012 Hz, THz). Some of the unit's most common uses are in the description of sine waves and musical tones , particularly those used in radio - and audio-related applications. It is also used to describe the speeds at which computers and other electronics are driven. CONTENTS * 1 Definition * 2 History * 3 Applications * 3.1 Vibration * 3.2 Electromagnetic radiation * 3.3 Computers * 4 SI multiples * 5 See also * 6 Notes and references * 7 External links DEFINITIONThe hertz is equivalent to cycles per second , i.e., "1/second" or s 1 {displaystyle {text{s}}^{-1}}
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Read-only Memory
READ-ONLY MEMORY (ROM) is a type of non-volatile memory used in computers and other electronic devices. Data stored in ROM can only be modified slowly, with difficulty, or not at all, so it is mainly used to store firmware (software that is closely tied to specific hardware , and unlikely to need frequent updates) or application software in plug-in cartridges . Strictly, read-only memory refers to memory that is hard-wired, such as diode matrix and the later mask ROM (MROM), which cannot be changed after manufacture. Although discrete circuits can be altered in principle, integrated circuits (ICs) cannot, and are useless if the data is bad or requires an update. That such memory can never be changed is a disadvantage in many applications, as bugs and security issues cannot be fixed, and new features cannot be added. More recently, ROM has come to include memory that is read-only in normal operation, but can still be reprogrammed in some way. Erasable programmable read-only memory (EPROM) and electrically erasable programmable read-only memory (EEPROM) can be erased and re-programmed, but usually this can only be done at relatively slow speeds, may require special equipment to achieve, and is typically only possible a certain number of times
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Random Access Memory
RANDOM-ACCESS MEMORY (RAM /ræm/ ) is a form of computer data storage which stores frequently used program instructions to increase the general speed of a system. A random-access memory device allows data items to be read or written in almost the same amount of time irrespective of the physical location of data inside the memory. In contrast, with other direct-access data storage media such as hard disks , CD-RWs , DVD-RWs and the older magnetic tapes and drum memory , the time required to read and write data items varies significantly depending on their physical locations on the recording medium, due to mechanical limitations such as media rotation speeds and arm movement. RAM contains multiplexing and demultiplexing circuitry, to connect the data lines to the addressed storage for reading or writing the entry. Usually more than one bit of storage is accessed by the same address, and RAM devices often have multiple data lines and are said to be '8-bit' or '16-bit' etc. devices. In today's technology, random-access memory takes the form of integrated circuits . RAM is normally associated with volatile types of memory (such as DRAM
DRAM
memory modules ), where stored information is lost if power is removed, although non-volatile RAM has also been developed. Other types of non-volatile memories exist that allow random access for read operations, but either do not allow write operations or have other kinds of limitations on them
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Kilobyte
The KILOBYTE is a multiple of the unit byte for digital information . The International System of Units
International System of Units
(SI) defines the prefix kilo as 1000 (103); therefore one kilobyte is 1000 bytes. The unit symbol for the kilobyte is KB. In information technology , particularly in reference to main memory capacity, kilobyte is traditionally used to denote 1024 (210) bytes. This arises from the powers-of-two sizing common to such memory in digital circuitry. In this context, the symbols K and KB are often used when 1024 bytes is meant. CONTENTS* 1 Definitions and usage * 1.1 1000 bytes * 1.2 1024 bytes * 1.2.1 Kibibyte * 2 Examples * 3 See also * 4 Notes * 5 References DEFINITIONS AND USAGE1000 BYTESIn the International System of Units
International System of Units
(SI) the prefix kilo means 1000 (103); therefore, one kilobyte is 1000 bytes. The unit symbol is kB. This is the definition recommended by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). This definition, and related definitions of prefixes mega- = 1000000, giga- = 1000000000, etc., are used for data transfer rates in computer networks , internal bus, hard drive and flash media transfer speeds, and for the capacities of most storage media , particularly hard drives , flash -based storage, and DVDs
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