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Testimonies of using BASIC back in the day

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    #76
    Originally posted by nikola-wan View Post
    I forgot to mention, Tektronix 4050 BASIC had no integer variables, all numeric variables were 14 digit floating point +/-8.998E+/-307 (8 bytes plus variable name overhead).
    That's not unsual--original BASIC didn't have typed variables. When we did our version, we left out numeric typing as well.

    We did keep string variables and allowed implied conversion between string and numeric; i.e. A$=B$+3 We stored floating point variables in "compressed" as literals. Saved quite a bit of space.

    Comment


      #77
      Originally posted by nikola-wan View Post
      Same goes for the early PC CGA graphics. Even VGA graphics 640x480 was about 1/4 of the resolution of the Tektronix 4051 more than ten years prior.
      There were third party card and monitor combinations capable of 1024 x 768 or better resolutions in the mid-80s. The Vermont Microsystems doing 1024 x 800 with 256 colors cost about $6,000.

      Comment


        #78
        Interface age bm9 basic benchmark from all sources

        "BASIC, FORTRAN, S-ALGOL, and PASCAL Benchmarks on microcomputers including the effects of floating point processor support" was published by Marcus Wigan in August of 1982 as mentioned earlier in this thread in a post by krebizfan:

        Testimonies-of-using-BASIC-back-in-the-day post #39

        Table 7 starting on page 14 showed results from running INTERFACE AGE benchmark BM9 using BASIC or BASIC compilers on a variety of microcomputers, and minicomputers.

        I ran this benchmark on my Tektronix 4054A last night and got 310 seconds which put it in 12th place as my retyped table below shows.


        System CPU MHz O/S Language RUN Time
        CDC CYBER 171 . NOS 1.4 BASIC 5
        IBM 3033 . VS2-10RVYL Stanford BASIC 10
        PRIME 300 . PRIMOS BASIC 25
        Seattle System 2 8086 8 MS-DOS MsB(compiled) 33
        DEC PDP11/70 . kSTS/E BASIC 45
        PRIME Jul-01 . PRIMOS BASIC V16.4 63
        DEC PDP10 . TOPS-10 BASIC 65
        IBM S/34 . R-05 BASIC 129
        Digital Microsystems HEX-29 6 HOST HBASIC_ 143
        HP 3000 . . BASIC 250
        4MHz Z80A Z80 4 CP/M 2.2 MsB(compiled)5.03 277
        Tektronix 4054A AMD2901 25 . 4050A ROM BASIC 310
        terak 8510a LSI-11 CP1600 . UCSD 1.5 BASIC 1.5 Compiler 310
        Seattle System 2 8086 8 MS-DOS BASIC 310
        Alpha Micro AM100T WWD16 3 AMOS 4.3A AlphaBASIC 317
        Apple II+ 6502 2 DOS 3.3 Microsoft TASC 325
        DEC PDP11/45 . . BASIC 330
        Apple II+ 6502 2 DOS 3.3 Expediter II compiler 335
        Data General NOVA3 . Timeshare BASIC 5.32 517
        BBC Micro 6502 . BBC BASIC BBC Integer Basic 523
        SWTPC 6800 . Software Dyn Compiler B 1.2 528
        Alpha Micro AM100 WD16 2 AMOS 4.3A AlphaBASIC 573
        Technico SS-16 9900 3 DOS SuperBASIC3 585
        terak 8510a LSI-11 CP1600 . RT11 V0.3 8k BASIC 596
        BBC Micro 6502 2 BBC BASIC BBC F/POINT BASIC 596
        Ohio C4-P 6502 2 OS65D 3.2 Level I BASIC 680
        North Star FP Z80 4 MS-DOS MS BASIC 685
        terak 8510a LSI-11 CP1600 . RT11 V0.3 MUBASIC 703
        Apple II+ 6502 2 DOS Integer BASIC 722
        ADDS Multivision 8085 5 NUON MBASIC 5.2 877
        4MHz Z80A Z80 4 CP/M 2.2 MBASIC 4.5.1 966
        Apple II+ 6502 2 DOS 3.3 APPLESOFT II 970
        Rexon RX30 8086 5 RECAP Business BASIC 1020
        Cromemco Z80 4 CDOS Extended BASIC 1196
        North Star Z80 4 NS-DOS NS BASIC 1149
        Processor Tech Sol-20 . . Solos Altair BASIC 8k 1231
        Exidy Sorcerer Z80 4 . Microsoft BASIC 1260
        ISC Compucolor CC-II 8080 . . BASIC 1267
        Apple II+ 6502 2 CP/M 2 GBASIC 1284
        Ohio C3-C 6502 1 OS65D Level I BASIC 1346
        Commodore PET 2001 6502 . . Microsoft BASIC 1374
        ISC Compucolor 8051 8080 . DOS BASIC 8001 1375
        Hewlett-Packard HP85 NMOS . . BASIC 1380
        Basic/Four 600 8080 . . BASIC 1404
        Micro V Microstar 1 8085 3 StarDOS StarDOS BASIC 1438
        Sinclair Z80 2.5 . 4k BASIC 1514
        Processor Tech Sol-20 . . Solos PT Extended BASIC 1812
        Heath H89 Z80 . . Microsoft 4.7 BASIC 1850
        Zilog MCZ-1/70 Z80 2 RIO Zilog BASIC 1863
        Tandy TRS Model 1 Z80 2 TRSDOS Level II BASIC 1929
        IBM 5120 . . . BASIC 1956
        4MHz Z80 Z80 4 CP/M 2.2 CB80 v1.3 1988
        4MHz Z80 Z80 4 CP/M 2.2 BASIC-E(M9511 4M) 2208
        Vector MZ Z80 . MDOS Micropolis 8.5 BASIC 2261
        Digicomp P100-Z80 Z80 3 CP/M 2.2 BASIC-E(M9511 4M) 2322
        Cromemco CS3 Z80 4 CDOS CBASIC-2 2245
        Texas Instruments99/4 9900 . . TI BASIC 2479
        Ortex Microengine CP1600 2 UCSD.H1 BASIC 1.1 3017
        4MHz Z80A Z80 4 CP/M 2.2 CBASIC v2.06 3100
        Zenith H89 Z80 . . Benton Harbor BASIC 3550
        Pocket TRS-80 2x4CMOS . . BASIC 55830
        Last edited by nikola-wan; January 5, 2020, 01:19 PM.

        Comment


          #79
          Even VGA graphics 640x480 was about 1/4 of the resolution of the Tektronix 4051 more than ten years prior.
          Apples and oranges. The Tek used a storage tube display and was monochrome only. I've never seen a Tek storage tube display in larger sizes (e.g. 20-24"); they might have existed. If you want early, consider the Digigraph 270, circa 1964. 22" CRT with a 1000x1000 resolution. To be fair, this was a vector-mode display.

          Comment


            #80
            The Nicolet 1080 BASIC used 20 bit integer but one could load the floating point package, that I have but never tried. It also does a number of matrix operations. I can't run the BASIC on it right now as I'm not able to access the disk now. I hope to trouble shoot it in the month or so. I believe it runs an instruction in 1 or two usec, depending on the instruction. It has hardware assist for multiply and divide.
            Dwight

            Comment


              #81
              Originally posted by nikola-wan View Post
              "BASIC, FORTRAN, S-ALGOL, and PASCAL Benchmarks on microcomputers including the effects of floating point processor support" was published by Marcus Wigan in August of 1982 as mentioned earlier in this thread in a post by krebizfan:

              Testimonies-of-using-BASIC-back-in-the-day post #39

              Table 7 starting on page 14 showed results from running INTERFACE AGE benchmark BM9 using BASIC or BASIC compilers on a variety of microcomputers, and minicomputers.

              I ran this benchmark on my Tektronix 4054A last night and got 310 seconds which put it in 12th place as my retyped table below shows.

              ...

              Here is my updated table including a run made yesterday on a Tektronix 4051 with an 800KHz Motorola 6800 CPU, 8.2X slower than my Tektronix 4054A bit-slice CPU architecture with microcode floating point instructions.

              The Tektronix 4054A microcomputer running BM9 with BASIC had the same performance as the Seattle Computer 8MHz 8086 system running MS BASIC and the terak 8510a LSI-11 running compiled BASIC.

              The Seattle Computer 8MHz 8086 system running Compiled MS BASIC was 9x faster.
              I guess I need to compile the program on my Tektronix 4054A - I suspect I should get much closer to the compiled MS BASIC performance on the Seattle Computer 8086 system.

              CDC CYBER 171 . NOS 1.4 BASIC 5
              IBM 3033 . VS2-10RVYL Stanford BASIC 10
              PRIME 300 . PRIMOS BASIC 25
              Seattle System 2 8086 8 MS-DOS MsB(compiled) 33
              DEC PDP11/70 . kSTS/E BASIC 45
              PRIME Jul-01 . PRIMOS BASIC V16.4 63
              DEC PDP10 . TOPS-10 BASIC 65
              IBM S/34 . R-05 BASIC 129
              Digital Microsystems HEX-29 6 HOST HBASIC_ 143
              HP 3000 . . BASIC 250
              4MHz Z80A Z80 4 CP/M 2.2 MsB(compiled)5.03 277
              Tektronix 4054A AMD2901 25 . Tek 4050A ROM BASIC 310
              terak 8510a LSI-11 CP1600 . UCSD 1.5 BASIC 1.5 Compiler 310
              Seattle System 2 8086 8 MS-DOS BASIC 310
              Alpha Micro AM100T WWD16 3 AMOS 4.3A AlphaBASIC 317
              Apple II+ 6502 2 DOS 3.3 Microsoft TASC 325
              DEC PDP11/45 . . BASIC 330
              Apple II+ 6502 2 DOS 3.3 Expediter II compiler 335
              Data General NOVA3 . Timeshare BASIC 5.32 517
              BBC Micro 6502 . BBC BASIC BBC Integer Basic 523
              SWTPC 6800 . Software Dyn Compiler B 1.2 528
              Alpha Micro AM100 WD16 2 AMOS 4.3A AlphaBASIC 573
              Technico SS-16 9900 3 DOS SuperBASIC3 585
              terak 8510a LSI-11 CP1600 . RT11 V0.3 8k BASIC 596
              BBC Micro 6502 2 BBC BASIC BBC F/POINT BASIC 596
              Ohio C4-P 6502 2 OS65D 3.2 Level I BASIC 680
              North Star FP Z80 4 MS-DOS MS BASIC 685
              terak 8510a LSI-11 CP1600 . RT11 V0.3 MUBASIC 703
              Apple II+ 6502 2 DOS Integer BASIC 722
              ADDS Multivision 8085 5 NUON MBASIC 5.2 877
              4MHz Z80A Z80 4 CP/M 2.2 MBASIC 4.5.1 966
              Apple II+ 6502 2 DOS 3.3 APPLESOFT II 970
              Rexon RX30 8086 5 RECAP Business BASIC 1020
              Cromemco Z80 4 CDOS Extended BASIC 1196
              North Star Z80 4 NS-DOS NS BASIC 1149
              Processor Tech Sol-20 . . Solos Altair BASIC 8k 1231
              Exidy Sorcerer Z80 4 . Microsoft BASIC 1260
              ISC Compucolor CC-II 8080 . . BASIC 1267
              Apple II+ 6502 2 CP/M 2 GBASIC 1284
              Ohio C3-C 6502 1 OS65D Level I BASIC 1346
              Commodore PET 2001 6502 . . Microsoft BASIC 1374
              ISC Compucolor 8051 8080 . DOS BASIC 8001 1375
              Hewlett-Packard HP85 NMOS . . BASIC 1380
              Basic/Four 600 8080 . . BASIC 1404
              Micro V Microstar 1 8085 3 StarDOS StarDOS BASIC 1438
              Sinclair Z80 2.5 . 4k BASIC 1514
              Processor Tech Sol-20 . . Solos PT Extended BASIC 1812
              Heath H89 Z80 . . Microsoft 4.7 BASIC 1850
              Zilog MCZ-1/70 Z80 2 RIO Zilog BASIC 1863
              Tandy TRS Model 1 Z80 2 TRSDOS Level II BASIC 1929
              IBM 5120 . . . BASIC 1956
              4MHz Z80 Z80 4 CP/M 2.2 CB80 v1.3 1988
              4MHz Z80 Z80 4 CP/M 2.2 BASIC-E(M9511 4M) 2208
              Vector MZ Z80 . MDOS Micropolis 8.5 BASIC 2261
              Digicomp P100-Z80 Z80 3 CP/M 2.2 BASIC-E(M9511 4M) 2322
              Cromemco CS3 Z80 4 CDOS CBASIC-2 2245
              Texas Instruments99/4 9900 . . TI BASIC 2479
              Tektronix 4051 6800 0.8 . Tek 4050 ROM BASIC 2535
              Ortex Microengine CP1600 2 UCSD.H1 BASIC 1.1 3017
              4MHz Z80A Z80 4 CP/M 2.2 CBASIC v2.06 3100
              Zenith H89 Z80 . . Benton Harbor BASIC 3550
              Pocket TRS-80 2x4CMOS . . BASIC 55830
              Last edited by nikola-wan; January 10, 2020, 04:24 PM. Reason: highlighted the Tektronix 4054A and 4051 results

              Comment


                #82
                My story is a bit of a strange one. While I started programming BASIC in 1981 on Commodore Pets, I did get a job programming BASIC in the late 90's. It was software for casinos to track and manage slot machines. The software was written in HP-BASIC and ran on AIX servers. And there was some spaghetti code in there for sure. One example was for loops, three deep, and right in the middle was a subroutine and a goto to jump over it. I even found some dead code that I was able to remove and refactor. The code base had been started in the late 70s and was still in use.

                Jason

                Comment


                  #83
                  When I started my first system administrator gig back in '95 the plastics thermoforming company where I was hired had a 10K line GWBASIC program that estimated costs for new forming jobs. The software was written by the owners son and I was not allowed to touch it (nor did I want to, not enough sauce for that spaghetti). It was actually an amazing piece of software that calculated everything from tooling to die and forming. When I left in 2000 they were still using it (probably are to this day).

                  The full company accounting package was also custom written in GWBASIC which I did end up rewriting in a combination of QuickBASIC 4.5, Visual Basic for DOS 1.0 using ISAM database, and Visual Basic for Windows. BASIC allowed me to write software quickly. They used my software until the mid 2000's when they switched over to a PeachTree accounting solution (the sysadmin that took over for me used to work for PeachTree, so makes sense).

                  Sure I could have used Pascal or C but compiled BASIC was plenty fast enough. Also, revisiting your BASIC code months, or even years, later for revisions was much easier as well.

                  In fact, I still enjoy writing code in BASIC to this day in a modern 64bit version of QuickBASIC called QB64 ( www.qb64.org ).

                  Comment

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