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Topic: I found this by accident (Read 4 times) previous topic - next topic


Oct 11, 2012, 01:05 am Last Edit: Oct 11, 2012, 02:14 am by Docedison Reason: 1
Having carefully read your messages and you Not having carefully read mine... I spent several years looking for a good Basic board and software that wasn't in the "Gold Plated" class and after having spent a great deal of money and time what I discovered was that C and C++ are universal, Basic Even with Amicus, Swordfish, Mikrobasic, Melabs and the Proton compiler were really novelties.. From what I've seen in the embedded market basic is used mainly by people who cannot or will not use C and or C++.
I actively watched the Crownhill Sites, both Proton and Amicus and the Melabs and Mikro sites and found little activity from day to day, compared with the activity I see here and I made my decision from there based on the activity seen on the "Basic" sites. I don't doubt that the Core Basic compiler is the greatest thing since the 4004 grew up (Yes I do remember it, Very Well...). I didn't need you lauding the software at all. A good part of my "Comparison" was based on an earlier version of Core Basic. The Basic supplied with the Coridium. And as to the Wunderkind "New Core Basic"... If I make a mistake with an Arduino a new chip costs about $6.00... The Arduino for me isn't about building a controller I can buy those off the shelf. It's about learning the language. If I wanted to build a controller I'd probably use Amicus and just layout a board for the task. I think you also missed the concept that I wanted to learn a new language, one used both commercially as well as for private or experimenter use and Core Basic simply doesn't fit any of that. It for all it's power has IMO had its 15 minutes of fame and little if anything has really happened since. C begat C++, Java and a number of other languages as well. I consider C and C++ as dynamic and changing computing as we know it today. I wrote code way back when Dos was the only real game in town. Microsoft PDS 7.1 lacks a little of the luster of Visual Studio but I wrote applications in that language that I used from Dos 3 to Windows XP. The apps I wrote worked well and so did the control apps I wrote for the products I designed from 1992 to 1998 or 9. I was the design engineer for a small company in Costa Mesa Ca. My principal task was the design of Irrigation controllers and schedulers (clocks) and I used PDS 7 for the windows 3 applications I wrote to control the devices I designed and built... However If I had it all to do again I'd still choose to learn C++ Primarily for the education but mostly because C and C++ is Mainstream. My intent here isn't to make Knight Rider type junk, Cute but quite useless except for personal identity statements. SolderCore... $80.00 for a Creative Commons Board?. The PCB burdened fully with the exception of the basic is about the same as a Mega in cost... But I can't take what I did on a Corebasic board and re port it to another board.
Renasys, ST Micro STM32, TI MSP430... and there are likely newer ones as I write this commentary. All readily available and INEXPENSIVE, WITH GOOD FREE COMPILERS
Not to mention GCC and all the work that went into that or AVR Studio and ALL MAINSTREAM and FREE The Soldercore board does have a great deal of appeal but when I look at the board I see 50% of a fast and powerful processor WASTED... No Visible I/O to harness all that power especially when compared to a STM or a TI MSP.
SolderCore, Cute, Powerful BUT I can simply buy a Mega 2560 and make a board and know that I have good free tools to make the board function as I intend
My project is strictly retirement entertainment.  I am designing and writing code that needs all the I/O for a Mega... Would an ITEAD 3.2" GLCD fit on the SolderCore board and leave ANY I/O left over?. When I am done I will have 2 sets of radios, one @ 450 Mhz commercial frequencies and 3 or 4 2.4 GHz transceivers as well as 2 4D Systems 3.2 PT SGC displays to control my room lighting, ventilation, Display inside and outside temp and RH, A barometer and a security system for my apartment ,garage, and greenhouse as well as complete data logging both to my PC, network and controller for temp, baro and RH data so it can be graphed as a beginning of a controllable environment for me. So far I have about 40K bytes of code and I expect to write another 30K bytes, Modules and Devices one at a time. A great deal of what I am doing now is simply learning a language, one that is immediate and uses the web for support and information NOT ACCESSIBLE AT ALL From the Internet without direct intervention through both radio, 450MHz Commercial or Amateur Radio (My Call is WA7EMS) and the phone company.
I got off to a bad start and shouldn't have aired my misadventures with the earlier Core Basic used in the Arm Express board.
The Soldercore board is IMO an expensive oddity. Perhaps had I found a Basic that wasn't nearly a Thousand dollars for a full featured configuration... 400 to 700 dollars last time I checked and easily portable across a dozen Atmel chips as is the Free and very rich set of tools I might have taken the easy way out and just used basic. Hoow Much is an installable compiler for Core Basic and how many TI chips does it work with, can it be used on other devices... perhaps the LPC2106 I own. If this rant seems uneven forgive me but I have a sick room mate and my attention is frequently divided... I also very
The Soldercore board is much too expensive, perhaps it's the cachet of price.... Gee the language is great and the board costs a lot of money... So It's Gotta be great...
If I could buy the basic in the 30 to 50 dollar range for a one seat or 2 seat license and it was easily ported to any 32 bit proc then I might buy it. I do rather think that the Arduino has the "Best Bang for the Buck" of ANY product on the market today. ALL Strictly IMO, based on many years of Mistakes...
Edit... stray thoughts
Interesting bench mark, The Vic 20 is 30 years old and as I remember it had a 4 MHz clock for a 6502... A Proc with one register. Intel had 6 or 8 8 Bit and many of those (I remember the E register had an extendable width) in the '88 and went larger as the X of X86 got bigger, So which got tested, I wonder?
The BenchMark? is Here:   http://soldercore.com/manual/

Btw I really feel that this thing should be moved or buried as it is inappropriate to continue this discussion any more here and I am thinking that I should Never have begun it... Here at least.
--> WA7EMS <--
"The solution of every problem is another problem." -Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
I do answer technical questions PM'd to me with whatever is in my clipboard


Oct 11, 2012, 01:41 am Last Edit: Oct 11, 2012, 01:51 am by paul_l_curtis Reason: 1
From the links you gave previously, which are to Coridium Corps' website, you have confused the BASIC system they offer (BASICtools or Coridium BASIC) with the SolderCore and CoreBASIC.  None of the features I exposed were part of Coridium's offering simply because the two companies behind the two distinct products are absolutely distinct and the code and people behind the two products have nothing in common.  Coridium don't sell CoreBASIC, and there is no "previous version" of CoreBASIC, this is the first release of CoreBASIC for the SolderCore, Freedom Board, Raspberry Pi, and BeagleBone.

Therefore, whilst you may have read my post carefully, you have made some association between products that simply does not exist.

I happen to be well acquainted with C, having written the CrossWorks C compiler for MSP430, AVR, MAXQ20, and MAXQ30 and can perfectly understand the high-level view of porting an application from one platform to another.  And I also write a lot of the code for CrossWorks' GUI, CrossStudio.  And I also implemented the CoreBASIC firmware and the mass storage an TCP/IP stacks that it is based on from zero, in C, using our own RTOS.  Oh, and all the C runtime support in our products.  So, I think I'm qualified to have an opinion, but then I have not expressed any opinion on Arduino or its ecosystem.  And yes, I even program Arduino using my own dog food.


I even program Arduino using my own dog food.

That's quite impressive, as are your programming experience.

I think there is a market, however niche, for something like this. I do think that rather than running it as a BASIC board, it may make sense to push it to "mini-PC", with the potential to run DOS and its vast library of gaming code on such a beast. Make it more like Raspberry Pi / CubieBoard, but DOS-oriented.

You can potentially get a lot more users that way.


Stand-alone computer is already done.  The following might sound like an ad, but not everybody understands what SolderCore and CoreBASIC is, and how it differs from what an Arduino is.  It's somewhat unfortunate that we decided to use an Arduino footprint for SolderCore as this has clearly led to confusion.

You can pop a keyboard on the SolderCore, connect up a VGA monitor using our Arcade Shield, and then run a completely battery-powered Arduino-format "PC".  With a connection to the Internet too!

This is shown in one of the videos that I posted to YouTube.  If you're not interested in this, that's fine, stop reading now.

I simply used a PS/2 keyboard to type in CoreBASIC programs using the built-in editor on SolderCore and then ran them on the SolderCore.  No PC involved.  Full 3D graphics output, full sensor fusion, all battery powered.  You can even see me edit up the program and run it from inside the CoreBASIC editor, immediately after I made the changes.  No recompiles, nothing.  The 3D image is computed using quaternions from the output of the fused sensor data, and the calculations are all written in BASIC.


The code for that demo is available:


Any program on our server can be downloaded to the SolderCore over the Internet using the EXAMPLE keyword.  The HELP keyword queries the network to present our help documentation as it is on the server: it's not pre-formatted, the SolderCore downloads and interprets the HTML.  And to download a firmware upgrade over the internet to get the latest version of CoreBASIC?  Just type FIRMWARE RUN.

So, how would similar be done on an Arduino, any version?  You're free to chose whatever hardware combination you feel appropriate.  :-)

SolderCore is not an Arduino, and does not even intend to address hard real-time programming.  But what it does have is a little novel.


Oct 11, 2012, 03:52 am Last Edit: Oct 12, 2012, 11:41 am by Docedison Reason: 1
It wouldn't take much to make a machine like that, remember for the most part the games were written for the limited graphics capabilities of the day. Some like the Commodore were for a rather different dialect of Basic and if assembled total babel as far as any processor today... I think... Does anyone yet USE 6502 assembler?.
there is though a thought that comes to mind... What about a product/proggie that could emulate those old boxes and the Atari's and...

Paul I owe you a deep apology for the comments about the two basics but the editor splash screen was just similar enough to trigger the memories and I guess something bad that I ate started this rant on my part and for that I apologize to anyone offended. Your Machine is impressive but I prefer the tether I have in the USB cable. Perversely I like the impossibility of accurate power to all Items. The lack of accurate power and especially ground force me to pay attention to detail as I use breadboards connected by jumpers to connect to my Mega. The other thing that I have no use for is it's prime feature because it is a networking type of device. All networks that use radio are essentially open and many that aren't are easily compromised. For my own security I prefer to use other means of data exchange. I do appreciate all the work that went into that really nice looking bit of engineering though. There are years of man hours to take the standards of the language and evolve them to what the language is today, I had a Sinclair ZX80 with the original integer basic and I bought the chip that expanded the language and included floating point math... But that was written for a Zilog ZX80?. The culmination of many efforts by a lot of people most of all you are very impressive, Especially the Networking thing as it makes it open to all machines with a shared network protocol. Strictly I see a prime issue in the price vs functionality, a cursory examination of the processor confirmed my estimate of I/O use as there are a large number of port pins unused. Another thought is that an Arduino is a multifaceted bicycle with training wheels in it's simplicity. It's simplicity is one of it's major features in that it forces a creativity that simply isn't there in the same direction as your board, Blow one up, buy another and hopefully... not do "That" again. There is the Creativity of making the "Crippled (was that the word?) device do some impressive and many things rather...
But I've advised people about some things I have had direct expierience with and there have been some nice projects... Too Perhaps the SolderCore price might be appropriate if made singly but although there is a lot of bang for the buck, theres also a great many bucks for something that uncomplicated even if you had chosen... but IMO it's still a niche compartment for the price and the method of use of that impressive chip... Better by Far as a Mega and compete with that end of the spectrum, ChipKit?, Maple?, The Due... on Oct 22 (Supposedly?)  and as an aside or better a sop.. to make the software available for other similar structures, other Arm Cores, reasonably. Security would be no real issue if you retain a part of the software until the account is verified and charge for multiple activations with some kind of agreement or like the PDS 7.1 have it create executables for intel architecture or as a Java app. Again I apologize for my rudeness and for commandeering and likely boring some people stupid with my chatter. It did appeal to me however to put the Uno and family and this really nice board into the perspective I see them from.

--> WA7EMS <--
"The solution of every problem is another problem." -Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
I do answer technical questions PM'd to me with whatever is in my clipboard

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