back to article Computer nostalgia is 10 PRINT 'BOLLOCKS'

"The music is reversible but time is not. Turn back! Turn back! Turn back! Turn back!" A good sign that you've reached middle age - apart from making mid-1970s ELO references - is when you discover a colleague's date of birth and can remember exactly what you were doing on that day. The sign of old age is almost the same, …

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30 RUN

Yep, you never owned a Spectrum.

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jai
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Re: 30 RUN

i think you're missing the joke in the code...

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Headmaster

Re: 30 RUN

The only reason I can see for having line 30 is would be to auto run the program once loaded from tape.

E.G SAVE "BOLLOX" LINE 30

...But saying that you could just start it at line 10 and save a bit of memory (it was in short supply then).

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Re: 30 RUN

By the time I was a teenager we got our kicks by changing the win3.1 screensaver marquee to something crude, or if you had a spare couple of minutes, taking a screenshot of program manager and making that the desktop picture which hiding the program manager icon in a corner.

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Re: 30 RUN

Yep SAVE "BOLLOX" LINE 10 would be how I normally have got the program to auto run. Was handy for when you had to load a SCREEN$ and several blocks of code. I often used it to load a Turbo code to make the rest of the program load up faster with funky colour effects in the border

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Anonymous Coward

Re: 30 RUN

Nope, the 30 RUN is not needed. The programme would auto run from the first line, which if you were old enough, you'd remember a lot of software companies faked a line 0, to ensure that was the first line which ran. Anyone else remember the ZX80 ???

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Re: 30 RUN

It appears he's not the only one!

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Happy

ok ...

"I bought an Apple iPad 3 last weekend. I now invite trolls to abuse me below. Lord knows, I deserve it."

Writing bollocks like this gives you that kind of disposable income? Where can I sign up?

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Trollface

Invitation accepted!

So having successfully thrown away the rose-tinted spectacles of nostalgia, you now spend your days looking through the rose tinited touchscreen of an iPad 3.

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Silver badge

Ah, the memories of XL1

I got the computer code running on a mate's spectrum, and sync'ed it with XL1 -marvellous - the tape ran a little faster than the code, so we had to pause between tracks, but still, it was to us at the time, awesome.

To this day, I'm doing similar things, albeit now at tad higher resolution, colour depth and frame rate, but it doesn't quite have the same thrill as coaxing a little spectrum to work.

Shame the cassette is now dying, and sits in its wee box...I did manage to sample it, along with the dubmixes on the B side - they were stonking - and can enjoy the magnificence to this day. Which is a really good idea...time for a stroll round Arthurs Seat, accompanied by Mr S - cheers for the memories.

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Re: Ah, the memories of XL1

I'd never heard of this and now covet it.

I've typed programs in from handwritten notes, recorded them from the radio but never tried to extract them from vinyl.

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Devil

I'm not sure if it counts as nostalgia...

...but I clearly remember

poke 144,36

disables the keyboard on a Commodore PET.

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Re: I'm not sure if it counts as nostalgia...

IIRC there was an address on the Spectrum you could poke with a value that would offset the pointer to the start of the character set data in ROM, which made all text unreadable.

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Silver badge

Those aren't banned words

That whiteboard is the source of every tabloid headline (and probably article, too) over the past 10 years.

Since it's got "boffins" on it, maybe it includes all El Reg headlines, too?

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Re: Those aren't banned words

gorgeous, stunning, leggy, busty, teen, offered up, huge, massive, red-faced, slammed,impact.

Shame the newspaper CHIEFS banned them, as they convey such positive connotations.

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jai
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30 RUN

hahhaahaha that's genius!

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Windows

Re: 30 RUN

(I think that's metres per second....)

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Gimp

Simpler times

I can get nostalgic for the era because it was less corporate and more about people pushing the envelope. At a time where offices were still full of typewriters, the computers of the era empowered people.

Certain companies and individuals made computers affordable. Sinclair put out computers that most people could afford. Amstrad came along and started producing PC's at under half the price of the equivalent IBM and captured 40% of the European IBM PC Comapable market in months.

These innovations drove prices down across the board. Computers went from expensive business told and playthings of the rich to stuff you or I could afford.

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FAIL

microphone?

"All I had to do was put a cassette recorder mic next to a speaker on my home hi-fi and tape the hideous screeching of this track"

Is that how you transferred vinyl to tape in your house in 1984?

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Bronze badge

Re: microphone?

"Is that how you transferred vinyl to tape in your house in 1984?"

Yes.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: microphone?

Why didn't you take a line out of the amp and line in on the tape machine? if you hadn't worked that one out by then how come your in It now. Is someone on the reg your cousin? ;-)

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educational

I didn't buy a ZX81 for it to be educational, but it was.

I had written fortran programs as part of a physics degree course but never something that would show some real time visual output. With the ZX81 and subsequent 8-bit micros I thoroughly enjoyed creating demos, games and other rpograms. Along the way I learned z80A, 6502 and 6809 assembly and machine code, something that eventually allowed me to break from my mainframe cobol career into a PC C++ career.

My kids are Nintendo generation and they just don't have the same kind of entry point I did into programming.

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This post has been deleted by its author

FAIL

10 PRINT 'BOLLOCKS'

Your headline is wrong. You need double quotes for that.

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Thumb Up

Never mind that, where did you get the pass holder ?

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Bronze badge

I'm not certain where she bought it from but they appear to be on sale here:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/ZX-Spectrum-Travel-Card-Holder/dp/B003AMNNJK

and here:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ZX-Spectrum-plastic-travelcard-oystercard-holder-/250777551964

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Thumb Up

They sell them at

... RetroGT.com

http://retrogt.com/shop/Card-Holders-11.cfm

I'd be tempted to get the Metro City Subway Pass one being a Final Fight fan although knowing my luck I'd end up in the ring with some big bloke called Sodom :-o

Rob

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Boffin

The cure to nostalgia!

What you will need its the following items:

1. 10 mins to spare

2. A ZX spectrum emulator plus some games

3. A state of the art PC capable of running 5 simultaneous copies of crysis in VMs

4. One of your offspring and your wife present

5. A flask of weak lemon drink.

Proceed as follows:

Invite family members to partake in your nostalgia-fest. Start up ZX spectrum emulator on your superb high def 36" monitor, blow up the emulator image to full screen. Start playing something silly like Sabre Wulf, bang on about how great games were back int he early 80's. Family will start to berate you like never before, your kids who once believed in their Dad will now make you feel like such an old dinosuar you will cringe at their every hurtful and barbed word. You will then start to realise very quickly that actually they're right, all your memories of old gaming masterpiece are so rose tinted as to be positively blood-red. The graphics are crap, the gameplay so basic and the subtle nuances of games like Skyrim so amazing you will awake reborn and cured!

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Thumb Down

Re: The cure to nostalgia!

That, sunshine, depends an awful lot on the game in question.

Although graphically something like Elite is crap compared to a HD game like Skyrim, the gameplay mechanics of it are still as rock solid now as they were back then. Don't believe me? Fire up a good two player game like Ikari Warriors or Vindicators and plow through waves of baddies to the accompaniment of explosions everywhere. Or perhaps with your new found gaming leetness, you can finally finish off that game of Dizzy that you almost-finished-but-never-quite-made-it.

Sure, not everything that came out on an Amstrad or Spectrum was gaming gold and some of them were truly awful but to dismiss everything as being unworthy of a second playthrough many years later reeks of snobbery.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go back to that game of Syndicate I'm playing on GOG.

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Flame

Re: The cure to nostalgia!

Chess is rubbish because it is old.

New things are better because they are shiny.

*Yawn* - nothing changes; this has been the cultural bore's go to argument for decades and it's as facile now as it was then.

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Headmaster

Re: The cure to nostalgia!

Absolutely. There's some gems on the 8 and 16 bits. Graphics don't matter and while not every title stands up as well as it did originally there are some great games on these formats. Head Over Heels is still untouchable and games like Jetpac have the simplicity that you now find makes best sellers on the iThing.

If we move to the Amiga then Turrican 2 and Cannon Fodder can still hold their heads high among any modern title. Indeed Turrican 2 I'd happily load up just to listen to the music.

And if shiny arcade like graphics are your thing then remember the PC Engine console is 8 bits and has a **better** than arcade version of Gradius.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wiBL0pWSq8

Looks simple but is compulsive.

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Facepalm

Re: The cure to nostalgia!

No Chess is not rubbish, Chess takes immense skill and extreme concentration. Heck, the kids board game Frustration is a stellar intellectual challenage compared to such horrendous offerings as Horace Goes Skiing and Roland on the Ropes let's not even get into the dreadful pisstake that is Advanced Lawnmower Simulator ( yes that is a genuine Spectrum game, produced in 1988, way after the masters "Ultimate: Play the Game" showed us what was possible by pushing a ZX Spectrum ), games in which you need a lobotomy to even begin to understand the reasoning behind designing them, let alone sitting down and coding, and finaly having the bloody nerve to sell them!

My post was mostly a humorous look at the fact that ( like the author of the original article ) not everything we leave behind in the past is worthy of admiration, but beration in the extreme. Smoking was considered a great pasttime at one point, watching small furry animals get torn to shreds for fun was considered entertaining, uprooting large swathes of people from their ancestral homes was considered of great benefit to some 200 years ago! Some things are simply best left in the past. As we head on to new things some will stand the test of time, Chess being one of them, very likely that Skyrim and Horace Walks To the Shops might well be best left in the past where they belong.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The cure to nostalgia!

Irony, motherfondler, do you speak it?

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Re: The cure to nostalgia!

This, hard. I have many a happy memory of gaming on my +3 (loading off an external tape-deck, as nothing came on disk), but running an emulator on my PC and getting my hands on as many of my old games as possible, was a depressing experience.

Likewise, everytime I bought a "retro" games collection for the Playstation, part of me died.

I'm not saying that there were no great games available for the old micros, but if I could go back in time and show 8 year old me something like Kongregate, well... let's just say it'd create a terrible paradox when the 8 year old jumped into the time machine, and stranded mid-30's me in the past.

Apologies in advance if the universe starts to unravel.

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Unhappy

Shakin Stevens

Am I the only one who was lame enough to load the spectrum game that came with one of Shakin Stevens album.

The shame.

Nice column improved over last weeks.

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Gimp

Re: Shakin Stevens

Oh No! A Bat Bit You!

[hangs head in shame]

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Re: Shakin Stevens

What about the C&VG cover Thompson Twins game?

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Anonymous Coward

Computer nostalgia is 10 PRINT 'BOLLOCKS'

Whereas those of us that actually had a ZX Spectrum enjoyed every minute of it.

"Despite never having owned a Spectrum... I am beginning to suspect that my false nostalgia for this little computer... has remained a subliminal influence in my life".

So, you're writing about nostalgia you don't have for something you never had in the first place? Was the phrase 'Cry For Help' on that board of clichés anywhere?

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Thumb Up

Re: Computer nostalgia is 10 PRINT 'BOLLOCKS'

Indeed. I remember spending many an hour typing out a several-hundred line program from <insert name of forgotten magazine here>, only to get

SYNTAX ERROR AT LINE 60.

Ahhh, happy days!

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Bronze badge

Re: Computer nostalgia is 10 PRINT 'BOLLOCKS'

"So, you're writing about nostalgia you don't have for something you never had in the first place?"

Yes. This is what I was saying about nostalgia. Well done.

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This post has been deleted by its author

Go

Add a ; for fun

At the end of line 10 and instead of it printing:

BOLLOCKS

BOLLOCKS

BOLLOCKS

etc.

All in a single column you'd get a screenful of:

BOLLOCKS BOLLOCKS BOLLOCKS BOLLO

CKS BOLLOCKS BOLLOCKS BOLLOCKS B

OLLOCKS BOLLOCKS BOLLOCKS BOLLOC

KS BOLLOCKS BOLLOCKS BOLLOCKS BO

LLOCKS BOLLOCKS BOLLOCKS BOLLOCK

S BOLLOCKS BOLLOCKS BOLLOCKS BOL

etc.

(at least BBC Basic did and I think the Speccy was the same)

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Anonymous Coward

"BBC Basic did and I think the Speccy was the same"

It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :) It was! :)

:)

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Re: "BBC Basic did and I think the Speccy was the same"

depends if you put a semicolon after the print statement

The bbc had some weird and wonderful graphics commands that you could make all sorts of mad shit appear with just a few lines to make random nubers and loops!

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Re: Add a ; for fun

Even more fun (and those with a handy emulator can try it too)

When it printed too many lines, the spectrum would have the prompt "scroll?" and anything except space would let it continue.

At that prompt press the caps shift and symbol shift (extended mode) and your prompt turns to "RUN". Press enter and get random words from the basic interpreter.

Even more fun when poking values to 23606 and 23607. Poking 8 to 23606 would put the character set out by one. Poking 0 to 23607 points the character set to the start of the rom and turns the characters to unreadable dots.

Can't believe I knew those addresses off the top of my head.

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Re: Add a ; for fun

The prompt became whatever the last command was (usually RUN, but GOTO 10 also appeared if that's what you used)

Happy Days

:o)

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Re: Add a ; for fun

Ah, forgot it did that. Shame the 128's reset button make it too easy for the shop to put it back to normal.

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Coat

Just Goes to Show...

Even Nostalgia isn't what it used to be!

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Joke

Re: Just Goes to Show...

Nostalgia was better in our day!

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