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SiCoDe Software Establishes Basmic
Posted by Nick on 25 November 1999, 21:12 GMT

Basmic LogoSiCoDe Software has created a campaign to raise awareness about the high quality of many BASIC programs called Basmic. Its aim is "to spread the belief of [its] views through widespread support of [its] views by all major TI-related groups." Basmic would like to ask everyone in the TI community to support the fact that BASIC programs can be created of equal caliber and entertainment value to assembly. We wish both SiCoDe and Basmic well in their future endeavors.


The comments below are written by ticalc.org visitors. Their views are not necessarily those of ticalc.org, and ticalc.org takes no responsibility for their content.

Re: SiCoDe Software Establishes Basmic
Satan WoRsHiPpEr  Account Info

i have conducted many tests and cant figure out why my ti-83 is faster than my ti-92 does anyone else know why?
(the code i tested was:
:lbl x
:output 5(*6 on the 92),5(*6 on the 92),A
:goto a
and when the ti-92 was at 300 the 83 was at 1957 or something like that)

     27 November 1999, 17:39 GMT

Re: Re: SiCoDe Software Establishes Basmic
matt c  Account Info
(Web Page)

:lbl x
:output 5(*6 on the 92),5(*6 on the 92),A
:goto a

dont you mean goto x?

     29 November 1999, 02:36 GMT

No Contest
biggy SMALLS

The fact is, no language is better than assembly. It can do everything, and is limited only by the programmer and processer. So, really, the question isn't which is better, it is which is more practical for the situation. For simple little games or math programs, you might choose to use basic. For a game with complex graphics, you will need to use assembly. The good thing about assembly is, if you choose, you can write your simple little games or math programs in it. Can't say the same about basic and complex graphical games.

About the basic + asm thing... that is pretty much defeating the purpose of the basic = asm, because what they are trying to say is that basic is equally as good as asm.

     27 November 1999, 23:21 GMT

Re: No Contest
David Hall
(Web Page)

> because what they are trying to say is that basic is > equally as good as asm.

No we're not. We're trying to say that
a) TI-BASIC is an equally valid programming language to ASM.
b) TI-BASIC programmers can be just as skilled as ASM programmers.
Thats it. It would be stupid to say that BASIC is as fast as ASM.
- David Hall
The Basmic Campaign

     28 November 1999, 15:56 GMT

Re: Re: No Contest
S67  Account Info
(Web Page)

then say that, and not Basic=ASM.
you logo should then be "BASMIC Basic is equally as valad as ASM"

     30 November 1999, 00:21 GMT

The_Professor  Account Info
(Web Page)

Have you ever heard of Machine Language?

     4 December 1999, 02:23 GMT

Re: Actually...
Jonah Cohen  Account Info
(Web Page)

Hehe machine language is just compiled assembly language. It's essentially the same thing.

     9 December 1999, 23:23 GMT

my thoughts
Harper Maddox  Account Info
(Web Page)

First of all, I know a whole lot about both languages, and from prior experience I can say that programming a large scale TI-BASIC program takes both time and expertise. For Example, Alex Highsmith's FFX (1 through 3) and Diablo (which I made) both took alot of time and skills. Works such as this should be appreciated, since in my opinion they are far superior to something like Fast Tunnel or Avalanche, even if they are in ASM. But the capabilities of ASM are so much greater than that of basic that i think there is no way for a quality basic program to be better than a quality asm program. ex: Dying Eyes and FFX4 in ASM are much better than FFX(123).
Furthermore, I don't think that a game is good because of a speed test or flashy graphics, but becuase the game is fun to play.

     28 November 1999, 20:39 GMT

Re: my thoughts
David Hall
(Web Page)

This is true. ASM progs are always gonna be faster.
Thats what the Basmic campaign is trying to achieve - credit for BASIC programmers when something good is released.

     28 November 1999, 22:51 GMT

Re: Re: my thoughts
Harper Maddox  Account Info
(Web Page)

I did not necessarily mean that ASM was better because it is faster. I think its better because you have more control over the system. Some Examples: Sprites, Images that don't take up all the screen, reverse video, the ability to display multiple sized text and graphics on the screen simultaneously, a larger temporary storage source, binary operations, access to any rom call available to TI-BASIC (and plenty more), and most importantly the ability to write your own routine to improve on an existing function (be it a random number generator or a new font).
This is why I encourage anyone who is skilled at BASIC to learn ASM. ASM isnt that difficult and you can do so much more with the same amount of effort, even after using the language for only a short time.

     29 November 1999, 07:08 GMT

Okay.. Okay..
Magicain_Synchro  Account Info
(Web Page)

Tell you what, since you think the skilled Basic Programmers should learn ASM I'll do it. But you have to do one other thing. You need to find a tutorial out there that does NOT assume I know ASM before I set about learning it all. Good luck doing that. Or at least find one program out there (game would be nice) with fully readable comments on the source, so I could pick up on what it is meaning.

I learned BASCI through Source
I learned QBasic through Source
I learned True-Basic through source
I learned C++ through Source
I CAN not learn ASM through source, ASM coders are
just to competition unfriendly to code their
ASM programs to a well usable interface.

So... i dunno

you show me, and I'll learn. (But once I see one thing that My Basic program can do that ASM CAN NOT do, I'm switching back, cause I need the game in whole. It would suck if my multiple saved spot game that has only one Var wouldn't be able to save cause It's ASM counter part wouldn't handle it. After all a text based RPG driven by menu choices shouldn't be that hard to port? Eh?

     30 November 1999, 23:57 GMT

Re: Okay.. Okay..
Cullen Sauls  Account Info
(Web Page)

I believe my source code for my Cars game is pretty well commented. You can find it here if you look under 86 assembly source, but a more up-to-date (an better) source can be found at my site under the "Games and Programs" page.
My site: http://freeweb.pdq.net/sauls1

     1 December 1999, 05:16 GMT

Re: Okay.. Okay..
Harper Maddox  Account Info
(Web Page)

I would suggest the following if you are interested in learning ASM:

Wouter Demuynck's 82 ASM Guide (not just beneficial for 82 coders) found at karma.ticalc.org/

The Ti83 ASM GURU by James Matthews found at http://www.ticalc.org /pub/text/z80/asmguru.zip

and in general any files inside http://www.ticalc.org
even though they might look cryptic now.

About Source Code being difficult to read... Most programmers do not want to go through every line of a 2000 line program and explain what is happening. Even when it is explained, it is difficult for a beginner to understand because the code is optimized, which makes for peculiar formatting. I would suggest trying to view the source of a game that is not very complex or optimized, so that you can tinker with a fex lines, compile and see what happens.

NOTE: the addresses are CHOPPPED because of ticalc.org's 40 letter per word limit.

     1 December 1999, 06:25 GMT

Re: SiCoDe Software Establishes Basmic
t-OdDjOb  Account Info

1) there is no denying that asm is faster than basic, also the graphics are sooooo much greater with grayscale and all.

2) basic games leave what can be considered variable trash all over the calculator. a basic program creates many variables that take up precious memory when the program is done. some of the newer calculators have the "delvar(" command, but many programers neglect to use it.

3) basic it'self takes up almost twice as much space as asm, and is (yet again) slow.

i'd like to give all of you basic programers out there some credit, but the only thing that would give basic any chance of being a good game is a good story line, and that could also be easily done in asm. my advice, take the effort you are putting into basic and use it for asm, many good games could come out of it.

     28 November 1999, 23:58 GMT

Re: Re: SiCoDe Software Establishes Basmic
ComputerWiz  Account Info
(Web Page)

1) yes asm is faster and gray scale is nice but that takes up room on your calc no?

2) a goos basic program cleans up his variables.. with the delvar command sicodes programs use that except when the variables are needed for saved games

3) yes asm is smaller but there are many low quality asm programs out their.. go look in one of the asm archives i bet at least a third a just shitty "hello world" or similar programs

     29 November 1999, 12:12 GMT

Re: Re: Re: SiCoDe Software Establishes Basmic
Reno  Account Info

that third comment of yours isn't really appropriate. Basically your saying 1/3 of all programs asm programmers worked over are just wastes. You're just reversing the roles here, where you're trying to get BASIC programmers respect, yet you are here not willing to give assembly programmers respect. Can anybody else see the irony here?

     30 November 1999, 02:24 GMT

Re: Re: Re: Re: SiCoDe Software Establishes Basmic
ComputerWiz  Account Info
(Web Page)

actualie i love some asm games... i love ztetris.. i admit i couldnt do that in basic... i love galaxian... that one would alos be dificult in basic..
but if you do go in the asm archives you will find little programs that say hello world, or the shut off your calc, or they change the contrast.. thoes are the programs i have no respect for.. and if a program released such a program and latter released a great asm game.. i would have respect for them.. just not the original program....

     30 November 1999, 11:29 GMT

Re: Re: Re: SiCoDe Software Establishes Basmic
Magicain_Synchro  Account Info
(Web Page)

>1) yes asm is faster and gray scale is nice but that
>takes up room on your calc no?

here here! Yep Yep! It takes up room. And, it makes some games difficult to play. I could not image GA being gray scale. It would make it difficulr to detect what presisely you would currently were doing.

>2) a goos basic program cleans up his variables..
>with the delvar command sicodes programs use that
>except when the variables are needed for saved

Excellent point. I use the delvar command on all the temporary variables to my game. The saved games and matrixes used for enemy variables I do not delet however.. I could just as easily move the enemy variables into a game as well. But it would lose on speed as well as size by doing it that way.

>3) yes asm is smaller but there are many low quality
>asm programs out their.. go look in one of the asm
>archives i bet at least a third a just shitty "hello
>world" or similar programs

I'll have to argue on this one. A lot of the basic archive's have the fake mem clear programs in there.
Granted that these are useful against ignorant teachers, they however clog the artery of the program flow. So on that point, there are some Basic programmers that just program for the sake of getting there names on the Archives. Then again, some ASM programmers appareantly do as well.

Most programs in the archive's are what a programmer calls a finished Beta. Alway's being added, always being fixed.

(no disrespect to the porters out there!! It's tough and I know.)

However, so are the Basic games out there. So they run slow, or they take up room. SO WHAT!! A lot of Basic programs are editable! Which means if you don't like something you can disable it. Like the Xchess save routines. If you don't use them, you can delete them and save some room on your calc, then edit the core program just to disable the funcitons. And then it's all cool. I'd like to see any programmer do that to an ASM program... Such as... Hmmm... well, I like picking on Snake so I think I'll make it as an example:

The version I have has to modes of control:

either all four directions or just left and right.
Left and right are useless.

So I think I'll just..

woops, first I have to go through and decompress the file. Then I have to open the file in the developement studio package I have (gotta love VirtStudio) then I have to go through miles of UNDOCUMENTED CODE and try to find out where the control routines are and edit them out. Then Recompile the Code, make sure the debugger/error catcher doesn't pick up. Send it to my emu or to calc then test it and hope the whole thing doesn't crash. That's just to much work. Now, I know all the ASM people say ASM is better, and all the Basic people seem to say that Basic is Equal. Now, where not saying that our language that we use is superior not in any way. All we are saying is that through and through Basic is a language that can do MOST of the functions of ASM and it should not be treated like dung. Just look at us, we are a TI community for christs sake. We can't agree on anything out there. First it was all 86 users were scum, then it was all 89 users were scum, then it was all 83+ users were scum, and now the ASM programmers decided that it wasn't the calcs in the world that were scum, but instead it's all us Basic programmers? HELLO!! Do you KNOW me? Have I killed yo mama or somthin'? Did I hit your dog on the way to school or what? Heck I'm not in the same Time Zone as most of you. And you still single out me among millions of other Basic users out here based upon the speed and size of our code. Well, here's something for you ASM people to choke on. Let's see any of you program any of your PROGS in Basic. You probably can't due to memory restrictions. I deal with this all the time in my line. Sure a shell has a restriction on it but what do you do when it is necessary to increase the size of your prog? you develope a new shell. That's all. ( YAS any one? with the capability of playing dadaelus? ) What do I do when it turns out that my current program cannot fully run do to size restrictions/specifications. I go through every single line of code and optimize it. Did you know that ONE 10 x 32 matrixe is smaller by 200 bytes than 10 lists with 32 items? Neither did I until it was appareant that the 200 bytes could have been used for an online help file. Have any of you (other than Justin Karneges) came accrossed this problem?
Proabably not, maybe so.

well I gotta eat, so I think i'll leave you all alone with that for now.

     30 November 1999, 18:32 GMT

My final rant on the subject (excluding rebuttels)
Magicain_Synchro  Account Info
(Web Page)

Okay, from what I have heard and seen these are the following arguments about basic and ASM

Games are slower in Basic.
ASM is superior due to the fact that it is faster.

I have read all 150 + statements and that's all I have seen come out of this.

Now, here I have a statement that will probably not shock any one here, especially coming from me.


ooh, ahh, gasp and groan. But I have found a game in Basic in my community that actually has better gameplay than it's ASM counter part.

Snake is the name, and speed is no shame.

It's programmer is Jerod Merle.

He currently is a high school senior and he wrote this program as an 8th grade Algebra student.

What is it?

Nibbles, Snake, Uncle Worm call it what you want but it is what it is.

The Code itself: roughly under 4k

Language: Basic

Speed: Superb.

it's just as fast as the ASM version and actually loads the levels faster. (HOW I DO NOT KNOW!! BUT IT DOES BY .01 of a second.

The ASM version and Basic version play the same way, and have the same speed and level amounts.

The difference is that with the basic version you can adjust the contrast during play!! (with the y= and graph keys)

yEs this is on the ti 83 platform.

So, I state that Basic = ASM based upon that if one game can acheive this, then all games can acheive this, it just takes time and skill.

My final Rant, but look for rebuttals.


     29 November 1999, 00:04 GMT

Re: My final rant on the subject (excluding rebuttels)
S67  Account Info
(Web Page)

The ASM version of snake could have a grey scale background, greyscale snake AND a greyscale apple.
Could the Basic version do that?
The ASM probably has a line that is a major delay, making them the same speed. If the game was slowed down with graphics, or maybe running a big math program in the BACKGROUND, then how fast would the Basic equivelent be?

     29 November 1999, 19:53 GMT

Re: My final rant on the subject (excluding rebuttels)
Harper Maddox  Account Info
(Web Page)

The assembly versions of snake have alot of delays to slow down the program, becuase if the game were made without delays the game would be impossible to play given the average human reaction time of 200-300ms.

This is a common problem with assembly games being too fast, which I have to cope with this problem alot. For Instance, in the Punchout game that I am working on for the 83, I have to execute approximately 12 halts (and eat up alot of clocks with the instructions) each time the Opponent starts to punch, so that you have time to block. For those of you who dont know, the HALT instruction waits until the next interrupt is reached, which is a considerable amount in the world of assembly. I do this just to push it beyond the 300ms barrier which a person needs to respond to perhaps block the opponents punch.

and that is all i have to say about that.

     29 November 1999, 22:23 GMT

Re: Re: Rebuttel!
Magicain_Synchro  Account Info
(Web Page)

yes, true true. but what would the perpose of designing a program that would be unplayable by human reflexes? There wouldn't be, so where as an ASM program could be used to create an ungodly speed why would you bother? And as for Snake being in Gray scale, NO THANK YOU! Do you realize how hard it would be to see all the apples in a scarce shade of gray? I do. It would be perposterouse. And considerring that the TI z80 processor currently has no real multi tasking envronment set (as far as I am aware) what would be the point of running a math program in the back ground? There would be no real point. Unless you're using the frech shell (whatever it was) and then it must be prog specific. SO...

I really don't understand your so called point, so it
must be wrong - The Pointy Haired One

     30 November 1999, 04:05 GMT

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