As announced last time, I powered up the CPU. In all honesty, I was expecting to see a blank screen and was prepared to spend some quality debugging time in front of a scope and logic analyzer, but was positively surprised to see that the CPU worked on the very first attempt. I even let it run for a whole night, and found it still healthy in an endless loop of fibonacci sequences the next morning. Enjoy BYTEC/16’s first video running the same loop!
I have run out of excuses now and should finally start writing some “serious” BYTEC/16 software. While still cleaning up the development toolchain, I am working on a very simple monitor program in C which would allow me to load a.out binary programs over serial connection and execute them. My old Monitor/OS written in assembly does not work anymore because I have changed the instruction set and microcode several times since I wrote it. In retrospect, developing complex stuff in unfinished assembly language was not the greatest idea, but I had no ANSI C compiler for BYTEC/16 at that time. Once I have the monitor program ready, I will attempt to port some flavor of BASIC interpreter, one or two text-based games, a dhrystone benchmark program, and maybe a few more simple applications. A port of a serious operating system (like Contiki or Minix) is still on my wish list, but I must openly admit that given my current pace, I will be ready with that no sooner than in 2027.