Re: [stella] [Stella] I'm new here and have some question.

Subject: Re: [stella] [Stella] I'm new here and have some question.
From: A Braunsdorf <ab@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 21 Nov 2000 09:25:13 -0500
[ Sorry to digress on the 2600 list, but I know C64 stuff. -ab ]

In message <000d01c053af$14557160$4b622126@dumpstertom>, "dumpstertom" writes:
> Thanks Chris, Mark, and Rob for the helpful info. I think I'll start on the
> C64 and then move on to the 2600. I wish I could find a good copy of
> "Machine Language For Beginners" by Richard Mansfield. I'm going to try some
> used book stores and flea markets maybe I'll get lucky.

For the C64, you really want Commodore's "Programmers Reference
Guide" (also).  Back in the day, we called this thing the Blue
Bible, and I still use it for reference on not only C64 stuff but
6502 stuff in general (though there's probably not enough there if
you haven't used any assembly language before).

If you want to do anything tricky or really want to geek out, the
Abacus books that disassemble the system and 1541 disk drive ROMs
are really good.

There's also that line of books, one for each processor, that are
all written in the same format.  Who did those?  Addison-Wesley?
They're black and have the name of the processor in big pixelated
characters.  I found those helpful in jumping from the Z80 to the
6502 to the 6809, etc.

The C64 was an awesome machine to learn and program when it was
new, and it's still probably the easiest to deal with because the
graphics system is robust and requires little CPU to do a lot of
cool stuff.  The Ataris (not just the 2600, but the later computers
as well) require a lot more bit-banging to get stuff done, so it
pays to have some programming under your belt first.

It's also nice that the C64 is "self-hosting", that is, you can
develop your code on the same machine it runs on.  Since you're
probably using an emulator these days anyway for any of these
machines, I guess that's not as big a deal anymore. :-)


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