Mike Spivey
  • Member for 4 years, 4 months
  • Last seen this week
3 answers
votes
3k views
Why did SMARTDRV have to be started with /x when DOS started?
25 votes

It's quite simple: write-behind caching means that after you have (for example) saved a file in a word processor, the saved file may live in the cache in RAM for a while before being written to the ...

View answer
2 answers
votes
176 views
How did the 6800's comparison operations work?
5 votes

Like many other machines, the 6800 has a compare instruction CMP that compares the accumulator with another operand, specified just as it is in other instructions like ADD and SUB. The CMP ...

View answer
6 answers
votes
3k views
Why does UNIX ed not have a prompt by default
36 votes

Having used ed years ago on a printing terminal (such as a teletype or a DECwriter), I think the reason for having no prompt was that on pressing RETURN after one command, you didn't have to wait for ...

View answer
3 answers
votes
636 views
Did the BCPL programming language support floats?
3 votes

No, but Martin Richards has recently added floating point operators, with a funny kind of type inference to distinguish between integer and floating point arithmetic. From https://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~...

View answer