Re: [stella] Stella debugger minimum window size?

Subject: Re: [stella] Stella debugger minimum window size?
From: Glenn Saunders <mos6507@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 26 Jul 2005 18:11:43 -0400
I think 1024x768 is fine.  My 15" LCD screen uses that
as its native res.

I spent some time thinking about how to break up the
screen into segments and it looks like vertical
scrollbars are a necessity to some degree.  With the
ROM display definitely.  I'd actually prefer the RAM
display to be scrolled instead of a big matrix of
blocks, too, and a separate register view.  I am going
to post an HTML mockup of my idea some time soon, but
the idea is that to have uniformity in how memory
addresses are displayed and acted upon in the

I like the idea of having three scrollable zones side
by side, each of which can be told to display ROM,
RAM, or registers.  And you could lock the scrolling
or have it autoscroll while single-stepping or other
criteria.  And you can set it up so that any address
can independently display values in hex, decimal, BCD,
binary, or "graphics".

You could set up your debugging environment so that
all the address ranges are customized to display in
the format you prefer.  Graphics in the ROM or the
sprite and playfield registers displayed as graphics
with a solid block on 1 or a blank area on 0.  Bytes
where individual bits are significant could be stored
in binary.  Scores in BCD.  And depending on how your
mind works, general stuff in decimal or hex.

That way you could watch two chunks of RAM at the same
time, for instance.  Or you can let one ROM window
scroll on its own as you single step and use another
ROM window to interatively scroll.

I also like the idea of a register view that gives you
the ability to see the GRPx or ball shadow registers
and flags which register in the pair is currently
active for drawing depending on the state of VDEL. 
This could be something as simple as a > character to
the left of the register address for GRP0a/b and
GRP1a/b and ENABLa/b.  I think that would go a long
way to demonstrating how VDEL works.

For the playfield in particular I think there needs to
be a little strip right below the 2600's graphics
window that shows you the "actual" playfield graphics
at each moment in time as they would draw themselves
if left unaltered for the entire display.  That way
you could single step and see exactly when you need to
time your register rewrites.  At 1024x768 there is
probably enough room for this and all the sprite stuff
at the same time above and beyond a register scrolling
window.  This would be like showing the current "brush
type" and "pen color" that the TIA is using to draw
with as the scanline traces across the screen.  This
would be useful to see when single-stepping through
six-char routines.

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