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Developing for VZ – Part 4

I had seen a few people talking about a programming system created for vintage computers. The developer named it Turbo Rascal: Syntax Error (or TRSE for short). It’s free to download and use. Most of the coding is based on Pascal but there are some C-like programming methods in it.

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Developing for VZ – Part 3

I discovered the Multi-Platform Arcade Game Designer by Jon Cauldwell and asked if it could be ported to support VZ200 and VZ300 computers. He said it’d work fine. They already had support for Dragon 32 and Acorn Atom – both which have the same Graphics chip as the VZ200 (Motorola 6847) although the VZ200 and VZ300 only have one hires graphics mode out of all the available modes the 6847 has.

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Developing for VZ – Part 2

I decided to try setting up Visual Studio for my development environment. It’s not as easy to set up as Notepad++ was, but everything is integrated nicely, including GITHUB support so I figured I’d go with it.

You need to set up a custom task in Visual Studio. You can read about that on the “Tasks in Visual Studio Code” page. Below is a screenshot of how I set up the Z88DK compiler to compile my Assembler and C code together.

Visual Studio Task for Z88DK
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Developing for VZ – Part 1

To begin your foray into developing for VZ computers, you will first need an IDE. Next, you’ll need to download and set up Z88DK development kit and grab a VZ emulator.

A good, easy-to-use IDE is Notepad++ as it’s free and simple to use. I use a plugin called NppExec to compile the code with a one-button press. You can also set it to auto-launch an emulator, but at this stage we won’t worry about that.

First, download the latest version of Notepad++ and install it. Next, get NppExec. I watched a neat little video for setting this up. It’s quite easy to do.
Download and install Z88DK. There’s plenty of info there on how to do it and I’m sure you can find a YouTube video or two. I have mine installed at D:\Dev\VZ\z88dk
Make sure you set up your PATH and ENVIRONMENT VARIABLES in Windows as described.

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VZ History

Written by Bob Kitch and reprinted with permission

by Bob Kitch.
The first advertisement for the sale of DSE’s VZ-200 computer was in Electronics Australia June 1983. That is a long while ago, particularly in computing terms, for a small and cheap 8-bit computer to survive. Since that time many people have purchased and used the VZ-200, and its upgrade in July 1985, the VZ-300. Users and owners of the VZ naturally tended to band together, to chew over mutual interests and problems, in much the same way as owners of other “breeds” of computers. These “jam” sessions were most often held over the phone, but have you ever tried to satisfactorily discuss a software problem over the phone? The next stage was to organize a meeting of interested enthusiasts, usually on a week-end, in someone’s home or at a conveniently located hall. And so began “A VZ USER GROUP”.

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