Re: I like Python and C
“IBM, in it's infinite wisdom, decided to put the system ROM at the top of memory.”
I’m not sure the blame doesn’t sit with Intel there- the 8086 processor bootstrap begins by executing code ar FFFF:0000 - right at the end of memory (for those too young to remember segmented addressing, that’s 16 bytes shy of the 1MB highest possible address on the 20 bit address bus.). So you would have to have some ROM there to handle the bootstrap process. And putting the system ROM somewhere else in the memory map would probably have required a second chip or some custom part.
For all I know it may sit further back in computing history than that....