My 6502 video series might be taking off. I had been getting a new YouTube subscriber every couple weeks, but last week there was about one per day, and then suddenly there were 11 on Sunday. Comments are increasing too. Don’t know yet if it’s a fluke or if it’ll keep climbing, but it’s cool either way. I was going to keep doing the series in any case, but it’s nice to know someone’s getting some use from it.
In this video we continue working on the Worm game started in #13, adding collision detection and the random placement of a digit on the screen for the player to guide the worm to. Next time, we’ll start by debugging why the digit is always 5 instead of randomly 1-8 and always appears in the third quadrant of the screen. This series is undergoing a slight re-branding. When I started it, I was focused only on the 6502 microprocessor, which is found in many different computers and products from the 1980s (Commodore computers, Nintendo Entertainment System, Atari consoles, etc.
It looks like I might need to ramp up production of my programming videos, to handle an influx of new student viewers. Fun times on the interwebs this week. The backstory: when blue-collar workers have lost jobs and seen their communities waste away in recent years, the response from the white-collar establishment has been some version of, “Learn to code.” In other words, just go learn a completely new trade and find a job somewhere in the tech industry, probably moving your family to do it.
It’s about time to start planning for this year’s garden and getting a seed order together, so I thought I’d do a wrap-up of 2018 to refresh my memory. First, the harvest list I kept is at the bottom because it’s pretty long. It’s not really complete, because I forgot to add things to it several times. It’s probably about 75% there, though. Also, I was pretty conservative on the price of things, using the base price in the store.
I was splitting wood this morning, and realized that has to be in the top ten of things that are completely unrealistic in movies and on TV. When you see someone splitting wood on screen, it usually looks like the beginning of this scene from Star Trek Generations: nice small, straight pieces of wood that split easy, a sturdy flat stump to set them on so they’re at the perfect angle, and no brush or snow or ice around your feet to trip on.
This is sort of a bonus video in the middle of the week, to cover something I should have done near the beginning of the series. Someone on an assembly forum asked about 6502 addressing modes, and someone else said they seemed awfully complicated, so I wished I had a video I could point them to that explains them. So here it is. The sun went down while I was recording, so the webcam got darker than I realized.
Starting a new project on the Commodore 128: the game Worm, an old game for text-based terminals. In this first part, we lay out the screen border and write the code to move the head of the worm around. The next part should cover detecting collisions with the border and making the body of the worm work. I’ve created a top-level page on my blog that will link to this series of videos and related resources here: 6502 Assembly Language Programming
Translation: It is finished. Aaaaand there’s one piece missing, on the bottom edge there. Usually I throw away puzzles if they’re missing pieces, but I hate to do that with this one, since it’s my only 3000-piecer. So I took it apart into sections and put it back in the box ready to re-assemble. Maybe I’ll find the missing piece under some furniture or somewhere. I wouldn’t mind gluing this one to a board, if it were whole.
Today I learned that if you’re an Adams Electric customer, and you need to drop a tree on your property that might get into power lines, they’ll come out and cut it down for you. I knew they’d do that for the power lines along the road, but it turns out they’ll do it for the lines coming in as far as your meter too. Good to know, so you can let them take care of it in the first place, instead of starting to drop it yourself and then having to call them anyway because you need more manpower to pull the tree over in the right direction.
With the Game of Life working at the end of the last session, I thought we’d do something a little different this time, converting a famous one-line BASIC program into assembly. In the process, we had to write code to scroll the screen as new lines appear at the bottom. Enjoy several minutes in the middle of me rubbing my furrowed brow as I struggle to figure out why it’s broken at one point.