MARC (was Re: Thoughts on manual database design?)

Jay Jaeger cube1 at
Sun Sep 27 23:44:37 CDT 2015

On 9/27/2015 7:30 PM, Eric Christopherson wrote:
> On Sun, Sep 27, 2015, Jay Jaeger wrote:
>> On 9/27/2015 12:30 AM, Eric Christopherson wrote:
>>> On Tue, Sep 22, 2015, Jay Jaeger wrote:
>>>> (BTW, My memory of that acronym is "Machine Assisted Resource
>>>> Coordinator", a small-sized Unix work-alike developed by Ed Ziemba (RIP)
>>>> using Leor Zolman's BDS C compiler).
>>> I'm having trouble finding much about this system; most of it is on your
>>> web page and the Wikipedia page for BDS C, which appears to borrow quite
>>> a bit from your page. Was MARC an OS itself, or a Unix-like layer on
>>> CP/M? Is it available to download and play with?
>> I'm not surprised, as it was never available as a product.  I originally
>> inquired about it after an article about it in the BDS C User's Group
>> newsletter, and talked with Ed Ziemba, and he agreed to send me a copy
>> to play with / test.  I tested a few versions before Ed Ziemba's
>> passing, and did some work on programs like icheck/ncheck/dcheck.
>> It was an operating system, not a layer on top of CP/M, although it did
>> use the CP/M BIOS calling conventions for the I/O layer.  And, until you
>> got your own BIOS integrated into your copy of MARC, it could boot by
>> starting up a CP/M program on top of your existing BIOS, which was
>> termed a "parasitic boot".
> Did it have multitasking?

No, not that I recall.  That would have taken additional hardware for a
timer interrupt, at the least, and my Altair never had that.  I recall
pipes being done as files, ala Mini-Unix.


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