Monday, 30 March 2009

DIY Slang :)

Sunday 29th March 2009

Ah. There is nothing quite like a Sunday playing around with SLANG. Well, XLANG really from http://www.ffd2.com/fridge/slang/. What is it precisely? Well, it is a cross-platform programming language that combines sort of BASIC commands with assembly language. Pretty okay stuff if you want to build simple programs to help you do things.

Well, that is what happened this morning. I was writing some commands in the Relaunch 64 text editor, to program some XLANG routines as well as assembly code routines to create a little program that could help me convert pictures that were saved in Vidcom Paint format into one of my own picture formats, so that I could make a much easier tape loader using the Auto boot IRQ Turbo Tape loader source from www.codebase64.com. But I wanted to make a few simple routines that will display the tape loading picture, along with music in the background. After I compiled and compressed the utility. The size it fit was 1K, after Exomizer. A 4 block program? What a result.

I tested the little utility that I made on the C64 and the utility worked fine. So I took one of my old C64 games, repacked it and then I modified the public domain IRQ turbo tape loader source so that it could do the following:

Optional flashing/loading sprite at $0200-$0280
Loading music at $1000-$1fff
Picture data (All bitmap, colour RAM and video RAM in one single load) - $2000-$47e8
Game data $4800-$ffff ;Smaller size is usually preferred.

Of course the game data would not be able to run straight away. So I added a transfer/relocator routine, so that the game that uses a BASIC SYS 2061 address will move from $4800-$xxxx to
$0801-$yyyy and then execute Exomizer's decrunch routine. Loading speed was fast. I sure will use this source for The Last Amazon tape mastering when it is time. :)

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