Old 8080 Books

General discussions related to the Altair 8800 Clone

Old 8080 Books

Postby h89user » March 21st, 2018, 11:41 am

I recently purchased the AltairClone and I am very happy with it.

I was happy to find that I had kept some books on 8080 Assembly programming. I have a copy of "Scelbi 8080 Software Gourmet Guide & Cook Book" and "Practical Microcomputer Programming: The Intel 8080". Both books where purchased, I think, about 1978.

Working with these books on this new (errr old) box is a joy for this old timer.
h89user
 
Posts: 1
Joined: March 4th, 2018, 9:39 pm

Re: Old 8080 Books

Postby toml_12953 » March 22nd, 2018, 10:04 am

h89user wrote:I recently purchased the AltairClone and I am very happy with it.

I was happy to find that I had kept some books on 8080 Assembly programming. I have a copy of "Scelbi 8080 Software Gourmet Guide & Cook Book" and "Practical Microcomputer Programming: The Intel 8080". Both books where purchased, I think, about 1978.

Working with these books on this new (errr old) box is a joy for this old timer.


Welcome to the nostalgic world of Altair! If it's been years since you played (oops! I mean worked) with one, you'll soon rediscover many of the tricks and techniques you used to use that have been forgotten along the way. I have had original Altairs and I now have the Clone. I am less afraid of actually using it than I was with my old, cantankerous Altairs with aging components and hit or miss bus timing. The Clone gives me most of the excitement (I still wish I could attach a physical disk drive!) of the original without the fear of ruining a museum piece.

If you're new to these forums as well, you'll notice that the atmosphere is very friendly and people are very helpful. Don't be afraid to ask questions if you have them. No one will call you names or think you're stupid as is done in some other forums (fora?)

Once again, welcome!
toml_12953
 
Posts: 132
Joined: June 7th, 2013, 12:54 pm

Re: Old 8080 Books

Postby TomXP411 » March 22nd, 2018, 12:18 pm

Oh, fantastic! I wish I still had my assembly programming textbook from my first time in college.

I actually spent some time the other day building a simple port monitor - it cycles through all 256 ports on the 8080 and displays their value on the screen, but only when they change. I also ran into a road block because the 8080 does not have a non-immediate mode INP operand: there's nothing like INP A, so I had to cheat by modifying the operand in program memory. (That's not something you can or should do in a modern OS, thanks to DEP.)

Anyway, short version is it took me all day, and I wish I'd still had my textbooks and reference books. But I guess I can't reasonably expect to save textbooks from 30 years ago.

Congrats on the find! Let us know if you make something interesting.
TomXP411
 
Posts: 13
Joined: March 8th, 2018, 4:13 pm

Re: Old 8080 Books

Postby toml_12953 » March 22nd, 2018, 2:08 pm

TomXP411 wrote:Oh, fantastic! I wish I still had my assembly programming textbook from my first time in college.

I actually spent some time the other day building a simple port monitor - it cycles through all 256 ports on the 8080 and displays their value on the screen, but only when they change. I also ran into a road block because the 8080 does not have a non-immediate mode INP operand: there's nothing like INP A, so I had to cheat by modifying the operand in program memory. (That's not something you can or should do in a modern OS, thanks to DEP.)


The 8080 has

Code: Select all
IN port


where port is the port to input from. It is immediate mode only. You can't use a variable for the port number so it's tough to use in a loop as you found out. In that case, self-modifying code is the way to go where you replace the memory location after the IN instruction with the port number each time through the loop.
toml_12953
 
Posts: 132
Joined: June 7th, 2013, 12:54 pm

Re: Old 8080 Books

Postby TimC » March 22nd, 2018, 5:13 pm

Some of the old Assembler books are very good and some make me wonder.

The best one I have found so far is: 8080A 8085 Assembly language Programming by Lance Leventhal
495 pages of meat. He really understands what he is talking about. The layout makes sense and every instruction is covered in great detail. The chapter on interrupts will get you up to speed with plenty of examples. I thought dividing all the instructions into 3 groups from most used to least used was really helpful. For example Learn: Compare and CALL Before: Call on Carry and Call on Minus. PDF is available from a google search!!

I have an old copy of Scelbi 8080 Software Gourmet Guide copyright 1976 and at first I thought it was great. Nicely organized and a good understanding with lots of detailed examples. 33 pages on i/o processing! BUT the author changed the name of ALL the intel mnemonics!! So mov a,b becomes "lab", mov a,c becomes "lac", sub b becomes "sub" and sub c becomes "suc". You can't assemble any of the examples without every line being an error. Maybe the second edition fixed this problem but watch out
TimC
 
Posts: 3
Joined: May 6th, 2017, 12:28 pm

Re: Old 8080 Books

Postby toml_12953 » March 22nd, 2018, 9:15 pm

TimC wrote:Some of the old Assembler books are very good and some make me wonder.

I have an old copy of Scelbi 8080 Software Gourmet Guide copyright 1976 and at first I thought it was great. Nicely organized and a good understanding with lots of detailed examples. 33 pages on i/o processing! BUT the author changed the name of ALL the intel mnemonics!! So mov a,b becomes "lab", mov a,c becomes "lac", sub b becomes "sub" and sub c becomes "suc". You can't assemble any of the examples without every line being an error. Maybe the second edition fixed this problem but watch out


When Intel started out in the business, they legally protected their mnemonics so others couldn't copy them exactly. For a while, every company had their own variation. That is until Intel decided that all the different versions were bad for the programming community and consequently them. I always though it was because Intel was challenged in court and it was determined that the mnemonics couldn't be protected.
toml_12953
 
Posts: 132
Joined: June 7th, 2013, 12:54 pm


Return to General Discussions

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

cron