September 29, 2006
How in the world wide web did I not know about the "I Rock at BASIC" t-shirt?
We've all written this program at some point in our careers. But only those of us who truly rock at BASIC.
Posted by Jeff Atwood
In high school I ported old BASIC games to the TI-85 calculator and distributed them. Our english teacher was very confused when everyone pulled out their calculators in english class.
Gosh, my first Basic programs were done using a Teletype connected to a remote time-sharing system via a modem at 110bps. You coded on paper, then transferred that (offline) to paper tape. Only then did you consume expensive online time reading in that paper tape and subsequently editing your hopefully few typos.
If you had a lot of errors you corrected them on your paper session log and made a "patch" tape offline prior to another online session.
Of course that was 1972 too.
My friend did that in high school w-a-y back in '75.
Actually his said "This is a waste of paper and added about 10-20 blank lines (while loop) on an old DEC computer the size of three American refrigerators.
Man, I remember learning Basic on a sinclair ZX-81 (no relation :D )
That was an interesting beastie. It predates the spectrum... It had the most awful keyboard imaginable (worse than most cellphones these days) and it had a massive 1 kb of ram. Of course, I had the 16k ram extenstion module, which hung out the back of the machine.
The slightest knock on the rampack would normally result in a reboot....
I remember coding "Flight of the Bumblebee" in basic years ago. The chords hung me up for a while ...
Man, I _totally_ rocked at BASIC.
They are totally missing some spaces at the end of the line and a semicolon so that it makes a cool diagonal pattern as it scrolls. Amateurs!
So, Jeff, are you selling these T's?
Wow!!! That really doesn't seem like all that long ago. My first pc that I recall running basic on (GW-Basic) was my dad's IBM XT. That and the Comodore. But even new programmers starting out today begin with a repeating "I ROCK BASIC" command, or more appropriately a "Oh crap, I forgot my .MoveNext"
on the old original IBM PC which came with no hard drive, and would boot to a BASIC programming environment if booted with no floppy in the A: drive
That's how all the old-school computers worked.. Commodore, Apple //, PC XT, you name it.. no hard drives, and BASIC in ROM.
more appropriately a "Oh crap, I forgot my .MoveNext"
LOL, if I only had a quarter for every time I've done that. ;)
Oh, it's a _running_ shirt.
Seeing this suddenly jolted a memory in my brain of the smell of my old MSX home computer. Wonderful.
I remember programming basic on an old ADAM computer. Half colecovision game system, half computer with tape-deck memory!
I got my programming start with QBasic that came with the family 486/25. I programed games that mimmicked the BBS games my friends and I played. Granted, my games weren't multiplayer - but it looked and worked like them -- and they were free!
I also took the Nibbles program that came with QBasic and turned it into a two-player Tron light-cycle game. Now that was boss!
10 PRINT "WHAT'S YOUR NAME? "
20 INPUT A$
30 PRINT "HI, ", A$
31 REM PRINT A$, " IS A JERK"
Ah, artificial intelligence.
We had no disks in the computer lab; we honed the art of concisely coded computer games, because you'd have to type it in from your printout before you could play.
Belive it or not but I actually wrote a function drawing calculator in BASIC on my Spectravideo.
It was pretty cool, took like three minutes to load from a cassette and could draw most "normal" functions (highschool level).
Unfortunately I never got a printout of that program since I didnt have a printer :(
Anyway, I DO ROCK at Basic (at least back then).
However, its a pretty safe bet that the lean, muscular model wearing the shirt in the picture does *not* rock at BASIC. That shirt should instead be modeled either by someone roughly the shape of a partially-deflated beach ball, or someone with the physique of a praying mantis.
Spectrum Basic all the way baby! I'm trying to teach my friend to program at the moment. It's wierd trying to remember all those "fun" programs you can write when you only know about 4 instructions.
*argh* I feel so old now... .
Ah, the old Commodore 64 BASIC was where it all began for me. I'm with Sean on the "makes a cool diagonal pattern as it scrolls" - I used to add one character more than the line width to get a funky blur going on.
BASIC rocks, so much so that they still taught it on my Physics undergrad course 4 years ago on BBC micros...
perl -e 'print "I rock at Perl\n" while 1
good point...I did programming in Visual Basic for a very long time...
By the way, Basic even exists on Palm OS handhelds. Look for SmallBASIC in google to find out more about it.
Lets digg this to show BASIC rocks:
Wow, this bring back some memories. My first computer was a shiney new Atari 800 XL. It was even high tech with a tape drive that actually used cassette tapes.
My first BASIC experience was on the Commodore VIC-20. I saved up my "Hay-hauling" money to buy it, and started learning BASIC the next day.
5k of RAM, 3.5 User Accessible. I originally didn't have any means of storing the programs I'd write, so I'd end up typing stuff in, playing with it for a few hours, then turning the system off. And, I didn't think anything of it. I was having too much fun!
Of course, I ended up eventually buying the Datasette for it. But by then I had also saved up enough to get the Commodore 128, which had an AWESOME BASIC language. Best I'd ever seen, and the best afterwards for at least a decade.
5 rem Disable the break key.
20 rem control N =line feed for paper printout
40 goto 30
Somewhere in after line 10 it had some print or lprint statements to mimic a broken logoff sequence. Then an imput A$ and a statement to write it to a file. We called the program 'STEAL' and used it to steal passwords. It was quite amusing to put every computer in the school on it and listen for the VVVVVVVvvvvv..... of paper exiting the priter and the frantic hitting of the break key which was disabled by line 10 hehe... High school Hackers!!! But we had to, timeshare didn't have much time and we NEEDED the access. HP-2000 level F with 'dumb' terminals and 110 baud modems dialing into it.
My first encounter with BASIC was a time share computer in high school. We dialed (big black telephone) the number, placed the handset on a modem and worked at a teletype (about 10 characters per second). No screen.
Most recently I've been programming multiplication practice for my children on discarded 386 laptops.
I worked on a 8 bit CPM computer with no hard disk. OS was on a 140k 5 1/2" floppy. I remember using command PIP to copy. ED80 was a compiler for Fortran 77. I wrote tons of interactive games on it. Best was an elevator simulator which asked user which floor they wanted to go, then it would print 80 characters simulating view from an elevator. My prof found this out and I lost the floppy for a month.
Finally I got around to write program for my thesis.
Alas, no printer. So I don't have a copy. At the tne of the term I had to 'surrender' my floppy to the department.
I learned basic on a TRS-80 (1978).
Years latter (college I think) I had someone trying to teach pascal. He went off about how much better it was than basic using structures and all.
I found that nearly all the structures in basic exist in pascal, and actually basic had evolved (the PC version) to where it didn't need line numbers and was pretty slick.
I turned in two versions of the first project, one in basic with perfect formatting, comments, function calls and no line numbers.
Then I turned in one written in pascal. Everything line was numbers and gotos I didn't even use subroutines (I would set a variable to indicate return addresses if I wanted to reuse code-even when I'm TRYING to write bad code I ca't bring myself to copy paste)
Never worked harder to get an F.
I wrote this on a Sinclair ZX-81 at 7 years old. Man, those were the days.
Can you change the T-Shirt to "I Rock At Visual Basic" :-)
I loved my Commodore 64!
10 REM *** I *STILL* rock at BASIC. ***
20 DIM WORD$(4)
30 FOR T=0 TO 4:READ WORD$(T):NEXT T
40 DATA "I","STILL","ROCK","AT","BASIC!"+CHR$(13)
50 FOR T=0 TO 4:PRINT WORD$(T):NEXT T:GOTO 40
60 REM *** :oP ***
Um... lol make that goto 50 on the end of 50. lol
Rocking at BASIC doesn't mean I don't occasionally have a brain freeze! lol
Thanks Random, I updated the post!
I've read your program over and over - untill my hard dick went full
sorry, but I had to comment. Anyway congratulations for good looking
"20 GOTO 10" -- there's a line of code that I remember writing way, *way* back in the day!
Did anyone else get their start in programming on the old original IBM PC which came with no hard drive, and would boot to a BASIC programming environment if booted with no floppy in the A: drive?
Man I still Rock BASIC.
BASIC was so much fun when I was a few years younger.
i"We had no disks in the computer lab; we honed the art of concisely coded computer games, because you'd have to type it in from your printout before you could play."/i
In our middle school computer lab, we had a bunch of Commodore PET computers sharing a floppy drive over some wacky parallel bus. If two stations tried to save at the same time, they'd corrupt the disk. So at the end of class, the instructor would go around to see what each person had done. If you had something cool, he'd let you save it off. If you had a 10-print-20-goto-10 program, he'd switch the machine off without mercy.