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What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
02-26-2019, 03:37 PM
Post: #114
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
(02-26-2019 02:08 PM)xerxes Wrote:  The 4-bit pockets (PC-1110/1140/1150/1246/1246S/1246DB/1247/1248/1248DB/1270/1430) don't allow machine code, but the Basic interpreter is significantly faster than the 8-bit pockets containing the SC61860 CPU (not PC-1500/1600/PC-Exxx/PC-Gxxx).

In the 80s/90s, there were a few Master Vars for (most of?) these Sharp machines that produced "Compilers" for professional developers (mostly in the finance industry). They really did not compile, they really were BASIC code tokenizers integrated into an IDE so a developer could write and 'compile' BASIC code which generated a binary file that could then be loaded into RAM cards to test and EPROM cards to deploy in machines sold as vertical solutions.

Pygmy and P*ROM (maybe others too) had extensively analyzed the tokens used in the Sharp interpreters and had discerned which commands were smallest or fastest, etc. Also, the source code for these machines did not look like normal BASIC source, as the programmer could use modern control structures (While, Until, etc.), ignore line numbers, etc. so it was easier to write and maintain complex source code, yet still run in the simpler interpreter these small machines used.

One can often find examples of such machines for sale on eBay, typically found in a Sharp PC-1270, which was a dedicated run-time machine, which did not have qwerty, only a numeric keypad, YES/NO, and few other keys used under application control.

Here's an example.

--Bob Prosperi
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RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer - rprosperi - 02-26-2019 03:37 PM

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