House your Raspberry Pi in a miniature TRS-80 style case

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/05/21/house-your-raspberry-pi-in-a-m.html

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But the keyboards don’t work. :frowning:

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Yes, this gets brought up every time these cases get mentioned. And the keyboard of the somewhat larger (but still miniature) C64 mini doesn’t work either.

We had a TRS-80 Model 1 when I was a child. I remember when, and I don’t know how he did it, a friend of mine, without my father’s consent, soldered in a chip to give us the ability to display lower case. Mind blown.

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OFFS! They actually skimped on a 2102 memory chip?

http://www.nightfallcrew.com/10/04/2016/trs-80-model-1-l2-lowercase-characters-hardware-mod/

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Makes me almost want to buy a Raspberry Pi.

Where do you plug in the cassette drive?

image

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I’ve still got one! We paid a guy $100 (in 1982 dollars, whatever that’d be today) to make the lowercase conversion, increase the RAM from 4K to 16K, and bump it up from Level 1 Basic to Level 2. I think the guy was a moonlighting Tandy employee (this wasn’t far from Ft. Worth) and we dropped it off at his house.

He screwed it up where we had to press “shift” to get lowercase letters but we never did anything about it.

A couple of years ago, I set the whole thing up in my son’s bedroom, but he quickly complained about the high-pitched noise emanating from the CRT.

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Ha. We weren’t far from Fort Worth either.

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I keep hoping someday someone will build a case where they do work…

(And a tape drive for mini cassettes, perhaps? :slight_smile: )

That was very typical of early home computers. The Apple ][ (1977) and ][+ (1979) didn’t have lower case either – it wasn’t until the Apple //e (1983) that lower case was added. Although I actually had a Franklin Ace (1982) an Apple ][+ clone that had lower case built in.

I went the computer + terminal route. Lowercase and more than 40 character were a must, although 80 column cards for the Apple came along fairly soon.

My friend and I installed the extra chips following instructions in a “hardware hacking” book I had. I think one needs to load a driver to get the lower case without using the shift key.

With the piggy-backed chip, the early Model 1s (like my buddy’s) would display letters like “y” with their tail above the line, while later builds of the hardware (like mine) properly displayed descenders.

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