(no subject)

From: Richard Erlacher <edick_at_idcomm.com>
Date: Thu Dec 9 10:17:21 1999

There was a lot of local interest in these machines back in about '78. California Digital, a sometime surplus vendor, ran ads in the mags of the time, e.g. BYTE and Kilobaud, for the digital cassette drives that went on these WP machines. Out here, in the hinterland, we thought those would be a potential improvement over the audio cassettes many of us were using to store data, hence we jumped on 'em. Wayne Wall wrote a simple loader/saver to run with them and, ultimately, Peter Boyle, author of the XPL0 language for the 6502,et al, wrote a floppy file system which Wayne Wall adapted for these tape drives. This later reappeared as the "APEX" os for various 6502-based machines.

Unfortunately, Chuck Robertson and I were the only ones who went so far as to package a pair of the drives together for use on the same system. Chuck modified the "TFS" tape file system for use with a pair of drives, but the only copy of that was damaged beyond repair during a fixit session between Wayne, Chuck, and me, (I wasn't even smart enough to be dangerous where this TFS stuff was concerned) and the TFS then slid into oblivion.

Floppies, in the meantime went down in price, and someone gave Wayne Wall an Apple-][ . . . so you can imagine what happened to the tape drive effort. It only held about 250 kB, on a 60-minute audio cassette, and it took about two minutes to run the tape from one end to the other when searching for a record. Nobody had yet thought to put the directory in the middle of the tape. Once one had used a floppy there was no chance he'd want to use these for a file-oriented OS. Oh, well.

I still have the box with the pair of drives in it, by the way.


    -----Original Message-----
    From: Mike Barton <mjbarton_at_erols.com>
    To: Discussion re-collecting of classic computers <classiccmp_at_u.washington.edu>
    Date: Wednesday, December 08, 1999 6:42 PM
    I recieved a Lexitron Word Processor at ... a yard sale. No diskettes to get the thing to run. Can you help in any way so I can either trash it or use it?? Thanks in advance
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