Re: Paper tape anyone?
The simplest way way back in the day was to use a photo transistor array and a uart. (Serial) or buffer (parallel port).
The tape was pulled through by hand through a simple set of guides to align the tape with the sensor. From memory illumination was room lighting. Might be improved with a desk lamp.
Clocking was by use of the sprocket hole which is smaller than the data holes and allowed some data skew/ set up time before data was transferred. You may have had to use your thumb to keep the tape in place.
Whole affair fitted into a small plastic/ diecast box.
Worked best with opaque black paper tape and possible variable results with white paper tape and possibly not good with oiled tape.
From memory "Pickles & Trout" made them.
Way back in the day when you bought software for your microcomputer (8080/6800) on paper tape and the thought of an ASR33 was well beyond the thought of possibility.