front panel display for a modern PC
josefcub at gmail.com
Thu Feb 28 12:17:14 CST 2008
On Thu, Feb 28, 2008 at 11:52 AM, John Floren <slawmaster at gmail.com> wrote:
> That is a lot of switches, but didn't CDC (and other companies, I just
> thought of CDC first) make 60-bit and other large word-size machines,
> which I can only assume also had front panels?
That's one daunting front panel, that's for sure! Of course, CDC
had larger budgets than we usually do. ;-)
> Sure, it may be
> annoying and impractical to have 128 switches, but it would be fun to
> make and play with. I guess if it comes down to it, I could just make
> one for the parallel port and figure out some way to interface it to
> various simulators...
I'd dreamed of having a "Generic Front Panel", 16-bit address/8-bit
data, hooked up via RS-232 for simulator uses. I admit that your idea
controlling a PC in this way would be really, really cool. Of limited
utility outside of learning, though.
> The biggest hurdle, I guess, would be figuring out how to interface it
> to the machine in a good way. The second biggest problem would be
> finding where to get that many identical switches and lights without
> bankrupting myself.
Buying in bulk is usually the only solution, because I wouldn't really
want to scavenge anything from a classic machine to do something like
this. Crafting a beautiful panel to install them in is the real
"I laugh because I dare not cry. This is a crazy world
and the only way to enjoy it is to treat it as a joke."
-- Hilda "Sharpie" Burroughs,
"The Number of the Beast" by Robert A. Heinlein
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