KZ80 Progress Update

Progress on the KZ80 is still moving slowly, but not in a bad way. Realising that what I didn't know about the CP/M memory requirements is now limiting me, I'm trying to spend more time on other Z80 machines to see what else I should be thinking of. It's also nice having a slow project.

  • I'm still waiting on the mainboards as well as some support boards (like the EEPROM programmer).
  • The keyboard switches are here. I'm missing one switch (for the =fn= key) and I'm trying to find a suitable replacement.
  • I realised that I could simplify the I/O board design: it reads the full address bus, but I/O requests only use the lower 8-bits of the address. That means I can use an 18-pin MCP23008 instead of a 28-pin MCP23017. It also cuts out one of the buffer chips.
  • I have a backplane on order that translates the 40-pin interconnect header to the RC2014 style 39-pin headers. I needed a new SIO/2 serial card for my RC2014, which I can also use to start working on a monitor.
  • I've been working on learning Z80 assembly using an emulator for the Z80 membership card. The actual hardware should be here today \o/.
  • I'm continuing to read

Unrelated but

  • I've also been debating standing up a BBS.
  • I've been getting a Compaq SLT/286 back up and running. I don't have a 720K floppy (and attempts to use 1.44M floppies as 720K have failed), so I've decoded Compaq's QRST format and I'm working on being able to translate it to larger disk sizes. I'm looking for a 386 laptop, too; if anyone's looking to get rid of one, I'm interested.

There's a general theme of wondering if where we ended up computing wise is really necessary in my personal life, and trying to find ways to make it more personal.


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