[Coco] DECB or ECB Compiler
pfitchjr at bellsouth.net
Sat Oct 2 16:20:37 EDT 2010
His webpage is here: http://www.tekeasy.com/Cer-Comp/
> -----Original Message-----
> From: coco-bounces at maltedmedia.com
> [mailto:coco-bounces at maltedmedia.com] On Behalf Of Andrew
> Sent: Wednesday, September 29, 2010 11:31 AM
> To: coco at maltedmedia.com
> Subject: Re: [Coco] DECB or ECB Compiler
> Responses inline...
> > Message: 6
> > Date: Tue, 28 Sep 2010 16:51:14 -0400
> > From: Roger Merchberger <zmerch-coco at 30below.com>
> > Subject: Re: [Coco] DECB or ECB Compiler
> > There was a very advanced system - I'm pretty sure it was a
> compiler -
> > fpr the CoCo3; I believe it was called Window Basic 3 or WBasic3 --
> > memory cells are froggy right now... I remember drooling
> over it back
> > in the day because it was kinda like Basic09 for SECB on Steroids...
> The only one I remember (froggy here too) was Cer-Comp's
> Window Master, as already mentioned...and what I will speak to.
> > The good features that I remember:
> > 1) Line numbers not needed (but could be used when importing older
> > programs)
> As far as I can tell in my user manual (yes, I own a copy of it and
> CBASIC-3) - line numbers were needed in Window Master.
> > 2) It had built-in MMU support - so a DIM statement of an array too
> > big to fit in 32K *worked* -- if you had 512K, you could DIMension
> > almost all of the ram (minus program/video/etc. memory) for
> huge (for
> > SECB) data support.
> Window Master extended DECB; it didn't add anything extra
> MMU-wise (except for a RAM disk if you had 512K).
> > 3) It had built-in basic Windowing support - you could
> create several
> > different text windows & have different outputs to
> different windows
> > -- I don't know if it had graphical capabilities; that's beyond my
> > memory
> > allocation** right now. (Where's that big DIM statement when I need
> > it?)
> Window Master offered a full GUI suite of commands for
> trapping events, opening/closing windows, showing icons,
> building menus and dialogs, etc.
> It was actually fairly advanced for the day. It wasn't a
> compiler, though.
> > Now for the bad news:
> > 1) I don't believe it contained a "100% SECB compatible" mode.
> > Depending on the complexity of the program you wanted to convert
> > probably translated to the complexity of debugging session
> you would
> > need to endure to convert a program to WBasic3. I think the
> > were quite similar, but when you got into the graphics & whatnot, I
> > think there was quite a bit that was different.
> Window Master extended DECB - I don't think I ever exercised
> it extensively as a kid, but from what I do remember, it was
> fairly highly compatible with standard DECB; the implication
> was to make it easy to convert existing programs to add
> windowing support, or build such programs from scratch.
> > 2) No CoCo1/2 support.
> No - CoCo 3 only, and some functionality was limited on 128K
> CoCo 3s (for example, not as many windows, and the RAM disk
> was not installed).
> > Anyway, if I get 'round to drumming up some time and finding my old
> > Rainbows, I'll see if I can find an ad for it.
> If you have an advert for a different windowing
> system/compiler, I'm sure everyone would love to see it!
> > ------------------------------
> > Message: 7
> > Date: Tue, 28 Sep 2010 16:06:03 -0500
> > From: "Little John" <sales at gimechip.com>
> > Roger,
> > That sounds kind of like Window Master for the CoCo 3 from
> > It wasn't a BASIC compiler, but added a windowing
> environment to SECB.
> > Cer-Comp did offer CBASIC-3 which was a compiler and weighed in at
> > $149 - the most expensive on the market.
> As I've stated before, I own both of those.
> It should be noted that CBASIC-3 couldn't compile Window
> Master programs; it had no "knowledge" of the extra commands.
> I wouldn't be a bit surprised if this wasn't something
> planned for a future release, but we never saw it.
> As it was, CBASIC-3 offered a wealth of extras to the BASIC
> programmer; it not only compiled programs to a native binary,
> but it also extended the BASIC command set (similar to Window
> Master - though not with any windowing commands). It
> purported (I never played with it) to make 512K memory access
> simpler, with extra commands to handle the intricacies. It
> also added various interrupt processing statements, and other
> enhancements (like an enhanced editor for code). You still
> needed to use line numbers, though.
> I had variable luck with it as a compiler; you could get
> faster code out of it, but from what I recall it wasn't a
> "blazing speedup" (it did have an interesting command called
> "GEN" that would allow you to insert ML instructions in the
> form of HEX or DEC values directly into the object code
> produced). It may just be that at the time, I was a kid and
> not a very great programmer; perhaps in the hands of someone
> more advanced, or with some experimentation - the speedup
> could be increased. There was a "helpful hints" appendix in
> the manual for making your code faster.
> I know that if you look carefully in various archives, you
> might be able to find a copy or two of CBASIC-3 floating
> around. Both Window Master and CBASIC-3 back in the day had a
> form of disk-based copy protection on them; I know that
> CBASIC-3 was broken - Window Master is unknown. Of the two,
> CBASIC-3 was the better to use, anyhow.
> One other note: As of several years back, Bill Vergona (owner of
> Cer-Comp) would, every now-and-then, sell a copy or two of
> CBASIC-3 on Ebay - his handle there (I forget what it was -
> search the archive) hasn't shown activity on it for years,
> though. I am not even sure he is still with us, but what
> little interaction I had with him back then (asking about the
> status of the copyright, etc - on CBASIC-3 - I was hoping he
> would release it PD) told me he was (still?) a cantankerous
> man who would hear nothing of the sort, and only sold the few
> copies he did just to "keep up appearances" with the
> copyright office (his right, I suppose). He never interacted
> with this (or any other, that I know of) CoCo
> community/forum. I am not sure why, and I find it a sad bit
> of legacy in the CoCo community.
> Whether he is still alive or not, I don't know (but I would
> love to find out!).
> -- Andrew L. Ayers, Glendale, Arizona
> Coco mailing list
> Coco at maltedmedia.com
More information about the Coco