Forum comments in chronological order

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May 2015

The bitbuf

Sun 3-May-2015 04:12
Hi Linus,

I've been asking this a couple of times a year for the past 3 or 4 years now, but I still maintain hope. What are your plans for the bitbuff - do you plan to release source code, etc. sometime? Maybe even do a writeup on how the synthesiser works (a guide to designing your own and the constrains you overcame / little tricks)?

Keep up the excellent and exciting work!

About me

Mon 4-May-2015 00:27
Hello, Linus! Just wanted to say "hello" and that I'm glad there are some persons out there like you. We pretty have same wide interests and activity. It's hard to find someone like this. Sorry for my not perfect english. Greetings. Long time from Demoscene and found your channel on YouTube... Amazing work! Best wishes and go on the same spirit.

A case against syntax highlighting

Mon 4-May-2015 14:25
I think syntax highlighting for prose may not be such a bad idea after all. If you trained yourself for the colors, it might become much easier to skim through text. Could be useful if you don't need to understand the content too deeply.

The TTY demystified

Fri 8-May-2015 14:00
The best article about tty ever! no kidding.

Variation 18

Sun 10-May-2015 19:30
Spectacular. Do you mind telling us how the sound is produced? —Thore


Sun 10-May-2015 22:20
Great Work!

Variation 18

Linus Åkesson
Sun 10-May-2015 23:13
With pleasure! I kept the opening of the video quite vague for dramatic effect, but there's no harm in explaining it here. First, we see a Commodore 64 with a 1541 floppy drive, loading a program called "ONE". If you watch the monitors closely, you will see that there are in fact eight different programs running, named ONE through EIGHT. Each program is running on a Commodore 64, producing sound through the SID chip inside. Briefly, this chip provides three independent oscillators, capable of generating pulse, triangle and sawtooth waves at frequencies up to about 4 kHz, as well as white noise. The volume can also be controlled for each voice. So with eight machines, that's 24 voices in total.
The piano part was recorded first. The program code was written in 6502 assembly language, and the data was edited using a custom tool created for this project. In the tool, I could edit all 24 voices in parallel, and pre-listen to the (emulated) synthesised sound along with the recorded piano part, starting from any time offset.
At the beginning of each SID part, before what you see in the video, is a loud click. This allowed me to synchronise the various sound and video parts during the final video editing, since the click also showed up on the oscilloscope.
Thu 14-May-2015 11:50
Thank you. (I’ve been programming the C64 SID chip myself, in the Days of Yore.) What role do the oscillators play? Do they just visualise the output of the SID? (All three voices, then?)

Homage: Albatross ex 2000

Fri 22-May-2015 13:58
Albatross 2000 är ett mästerverk. Fick tag på skivan vid visingen på Panora år 2000 tror jag. Håller än.
Fri 22-May-2015 14:02
Albatross 2000 är ett mästerverk. Fick tag på skivan vid visingen på Panora år 2000 tror jag. Håller än.

Föresten, hittade verket i sin helhet på youtube:

Making the Chipophone

Thu 28-May-2015 16:18
This is very awesome! I hope you should start a kickstarter campaign for this and get rich.... Just sayin' LOL xD Anyway, it is very impressive! :)

A case against syntax highlighting

Sat 30-May-2015 05:48
I happen to think that syntax is EXTREMELY important. It is what describes semantics to both people and machines. Different syntax highlighting is actually subtly different concrete syntax, just as different stylistic convention is subtly different concrete syntax. So it can (and often does) imply differences in semantics. That the highlighting goes away and is rebuilt differently between different editors and IDEs is the core of the problem. If the typography was precisely communicated in the source code of the program and everyone would see the same thing when they looked at it would not be a problem. But this isn't the case, so it is a problem.

It compounds subjectivity in reading source code. Not only do people simply think different things when they read the code, it is actually presented to them differently; hiding things that are obvious to others, and drawing attention to things that are not.

Rather than syntax highlighting being bad, the fragmentation of source code presentation is bad. Two very different approaches to fixing this are that of something like smalltalk, where the programming environment is 'built in', and everyone who works on the code uses that same interface; or that of something like golang that is packaged with a tool (gofmt) that transforms any valid go source file into one with a canonical layout. Golang also establishes a convention of applying this transformation to all golang source code before sharing it with others.

Where it is not a part of the established tooling for the language, it either amounts to inconsistency or an additional dependency. Neither of which is a good thing in the general case. Removing inconsistency makes the human interpretation of your code more coherent, and removing dependencies gives your software an additional dimension of freedom. It makes your code more portable between readers and allows you to use tools that might not provide the required dependency (syntax highlighting).