Why not Pascal / C instead BASIC?

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By AxelStone

Prophet (2703)

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02-05-2016, 22:35

I'm asking about this, I think it should be really positive to have a growing comunity of programmers in these compiled languages in order to share knowledge. They have no limitations as BASIC, and are more friendly than ASM, specially Pascal that is really easy to use.

I honestly should invite BASIC programmers give a try to Pascal (or even C), perhaps in few weeks they feel more confortable with it that using BASIC.

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By popolony2k

Hero (525)

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02-05-2016, 23:03

By Grauw

Ascended (8516)

Grauw's picture

02-05-2016, 23:13

Wow, nice library collection. And it seems a pretty friendly language to use as well.

By popolony2k

Hero (525)

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03-05-2016, 01:43

Grauw wrote:

Wow, nice library collection. And it seems a pretty friendly language to use as well.

Yes. Turbo Pascal is a great language and Turbo Pascal and HiSoft Pascal are very fast and optimized (could be better) compilers.

I'm still working on my VGM Player and soon I'll finish the first version with support to Memory Mapper. So this library will be increased with support to Hooks, Mapper and some other optimizations to access all sound chips.

My plan for the future is create a MOD player, a MIDI player and after this I'll improve this library adding Graphics support to it (MSX1,2, 2+ and V9990).

[]'s
PopolonY2k

By NYYRIKKI

Enlighted (5402)

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03-05-2016, 07:09

They did learn us some Pascal basics in school back in early 90's and I learned to hate that language (although school used to have such an effect to plenty of things)... I could live with anything else, but it is absolutely ridiculous that you have to put routines you call to later part of source than the routine calling it... That does not only remove possibility for recursion, but also makes life unnecessary hard without a reason.

C is not a bad language at all, but it just usually looks like a mess to my eyes. I'm also not a big fan of ";", but I think I could get used to it after a while... How ever if I would like to write C, I wonder why I would select MSX as the platform? Most other platforms have better support for C-language & lots of more ready made libraries. (ie Arduino, Android, Linux & Windows have very good support, active, helping community & lots of documentation on internet.)

In the end I don't think it is that important what language you select, but what you do with it. Pascal & C coders are welcome addition to MSX scene, but I think they might have harder time to get support from the community as these languages are less popular among MSX users. How ever I have no doubts that you can get very good results with these languages as well... In fact I know you can. Pure MSX-BASIC is way too slow for many practical purposes, so these languages can be a good alternative to get started with serious programming... especially if you have some previous experience of the languages. I believe I saw even some multi part tutorial done very lately about getting started (I think it was for C), but the links were posted to this forum as well. Also Kari Lammassaari/ACADEMY wrote quite a big amount of libraries for Pascal before he passed away.

By AxelStone

Prophet (2703)

AxelStone's picture

03-05-2016, 08:24

@popolony2k Really a very impressive library collection. With libs as that and previous libs developed by Kari Lammassari, Pascal provides a lot of usefull stuff to make good things.

Grauw wrote:

Wow, nice library collection. And it seems a pretty friendly language to use as well.

I really thinks that Pascal is even more friendly than BASIC.

NYYRIKKI wrote:

In the end I don't think it is that important what language you select, but what you do with it. Pascal & C coders are welcome addition to MSX scene, but I think they might have harder time to get support from the community as these languages are less popular among MSX users.

Totally agree. I've selected C to make my game and is too hard to get support, precisely by this I'm asking why not to create a growing comunity of these languages and share knowledge. They are very interesting multi purpose languages, for example I'm convinced that to make RPG or strategic game in Pascal / C is easier than in ASM.

I didn't know about Kari Lammassari, so sorry Crying

By cklayman

Champion (297)

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03-05-2016, 16:41

I was also taught Pascal in school. Hated it. Could not type very fast back in those days and the fact that you had to type BEGIN and END and declare variables absolutely killed me. We only wrote short programs and half of the text on the screen would not have been necessary in BASIC.

By rolandve

Expert (113)

rolandve's picture

04-05-2016, 14:25

MSX Basic is what I programmed in, at school they gave Pascal, later on C and C++. For me, the code in C and C++ is a big step back in readability. After all a human has to interpret the code while writing.

Later on TurboBasic by Borland appeared and it gave the best of both worlds. No line numbers, functions, subs and fast code.Now a days I use freebasic for my programming needs.

I have a Turbopascal version for MSX that wants MemMan for everything, after loading memman, the code still won't run. So TP for mix is a big fail. The decent solution would have been to make a memory library that does all the management work when you need it. This TP has been modified to require MemMan for everything...

A real clone of TurboBasic for MSX, like Borlands TurboBasic for PC in 1991 would really be great Smile

By raymond

Champion (395)

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05-05-2016, 09:14

rolandve wrote:

I have a Turbopascal version for MSX that wants MemMan for everything, after loading memman, the code still won't run. So TP for mix is a big fail. The decent solution would have been to make a memory library that does all the management work when you need it. This TP has been modified to require MemMan for everything... )

If you do not make use of certain commands which reside in the GIOS part, then memman is not needed. TP can be used very well without them, as there are a lot of include files which give the same results (or better), without having to use MemMan and GIOS.

For support for Turbo Pascal I started a thread on MRC: Turbo Pascal Q&A Thread

By raymond

Champion (395)

raymond's picture

05-05-2016, 09:17

popolony2k wrote:

I agree.

https://sourceforge.net/p/oldskooltech/code/HEAD/tree/msx/tr...

[]'s
PopolonY2k

Thanks for this nice collection :) Bookmarked the page :D

By tvalenca

Paladin (728)

tvalenca's picture

05-05-2016, 19:15

AxelStone wrote:

I honestly should invite BASIC programmers give a try to Pascal (or even C), perhaps in few weeks they feel more confortable with it that using BASIC.

As someone who took Pascal and C classes in university within a year (and at that time I as more or less sharp on my BASIC programming skills) I can't help to think that the difference between Pascal and C is somewhat what sorts boys from men. (no offense meant to Pascal programmers) Pascal is TOO theoretical, and C is focused on getting things done (not always this would happen in a elegant way - the truth proves to be quite the opposite). But that's the vision of a 20 year old tvalenca who happen to got a job on his third semester (from eight in total) because of his C coding skills. So, this is a totally biased thought.

And where's BASIC on this mess? BASIC is more or less in the middle, but a little toward getting things done (you could say: Visual BASIC were more commercially successful than, say, Delphi. Delphi was a little better, but that was on Borland's account, not Pascal's.) But MSX-BASIC is severely limited when comparing with Pascal and Delphi for x68 computers, and having no experience with Pascal and C for Z80 computers I can't say anything for now.

For MSX, I really think that we should stick with BASIC (and have a proper BASIC compiler), or MSX-C. But I'm still to try both MSX-C and Turbo Pascal.

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