Questions tagged [pdp-8]

For questions regarding the DEC PDP-8 minicomputer.

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23
votes
4answers
3k views

Use of undocumented opcodes

I figure this is fitting for Retrocomputing.SE because CPUs like the 6502 and Z80 and the PDP-8, and probably others, have undocumented instructions and will happily execute them, in contrast with ...
19
votes
5answers
2k views

Size of the PDP-8

What is the physical size of a PDP-8? The photographs I found seem to be evenly divided between showing it as a compact unit that looks maybe one foot high, and as a tall cabinet maybe five or six ...
15
votes
3answers
819 views

Conditional skip instructions of the PDP-8

I am interested in the SKIP instructions on the PDP-8. These test the accumulator and Link bit, and they skip the next instruction if the condition holds. The instructions are: OR GROUP SMA - Skip ...
13
votes
6answers
2k views

Was the MC6800 a PDP-11 or PDP-8?

According to Gordon Bell, the 6800 was based on the PDP-11. According to Chuck Peddle, it was a PDP-8. Can anyone with knowledge of the PDP's pass judgement?
11
votes
4answers
2k views

PDP-8 transistor count

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transistor_count provides some transistor count figures for early microprocessors, e.g. 8008 and 6502 both listed at around 3500. The PDP-8 was a 12-bit computer with a ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

How did the PDP-8 handle strings?

The PDP-8 was a popular 12-bit minicomputer of the late sixties. It used word addressing, so that it always dealt in 12-bit words, of which it could address 4096 with a full bank of core memory. In ...
8
votes
1answer
226 views

Are there any PDP-8 assemblers that create linkable object files?

I am currently writing a compiler for the PDP-8. The compiler is going to translate source code into PDP-8 assembly code that calls some runtime routines to perform high-level functions such as ...
7
votes
3answers
612 views

Arithmetic operations on multiple words on the PDP-8

For the PDP-8 with its strange ISA, I've always wondered what the "standard" (i.e. fastest) way to do arithmetic operations (add, subtract, maybe multiply) on integers consisting of multiple words was....
5
votes
3answers
337 views

In what way does the Straight-8 expand on the PDP-5?

A quote from the Wikipedia: The PDP-5's instruction set was later expanded in its successor, the PDP-8, to handle more bit rotations and to increase the maximum memory size from 4K words to 32K ...
4
votes
2answers
233 views

Does the Intersil 6100 do interrupts differently from other PDP-8s?

As I recall, the original PDP-8 actually does a jsr 0000 when an interrupt happens, so that the interrupt service routine started at address 0001. I think that saves a few gates, since the instruction ...
3
votes
0answers
82 views

What happens on the Straight-8 when changing to a non-existant data field?

The extended memory controller on the PDP-8 (the original one, sometimes called the Straight-8) apparently had difficulty when selecting a datafield that didn't exist: On machines with 8K or more, ...
1
vote
3answers
219 views

Was 1.10 a valid line number in FOCAL?

I'm looking over examples of FOCAL code, and I see that group numbers in the examples start with a 0 if need be. That is, it's 01.10, not 1.10. Was a leading zero optional?