Jump to content

Recovered TI BASIC Program: "Formulas"

Recommended Posts

Thanks to the help of my benefactor known to me only as "CAS," I was able to recover another TI BASIC program from old cassette tapes. According to my dad, he remembers writing this program to train new electrical technicians on the use of various electrical formulas (e.g., Ohm's Law, the power formula, power factor, three-phase power, decibel increases/decreases, etc.) when he was an electrical technician at a Ball Metal can plant in Fairfield, California in the early 1980s.


What I love about this program is that it's not merely a game program on the TI but an example of how forward-looking people were envisioning that personal computers could be used in novel ways in an actual industry context. And, from an education standpoint, it anticipates the ubiquity of online trainings and online coursework that we're all too familiar with nowadays in corporate and educational contexts.


In any case, here's the recovered program "Formulas." Enjoy!






Edited by zacharyfruhling
  • Like 14
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Very cool! This would have been considered quite innovative at the time.

As for digital archeology, there is nothing like reviving a long-forgotten program from the early days of personal computing. I experienced this first hand when I stumbled a few years ago on my handwritten TI Basic version of Pac Man from 1982 (back in the day this was a rite of passage for any budding programmer 😄). I recalled that it had a fatal bug that caused it to crash after a while but could not figure it out at the time. So I retyped into my TI, reproduced the bug, printed the listing to my printer and fairly quickly realized that I was repeatedly exiting a subroutine via a GOTO instead of the usual RETURN, leading eventually to a stack overflow and crash. No way would I have understood that in 1982, so you can imagine how excited I was to finally fully revive this early program of mine. It now lives on the tigameshelf.net site under its original name of TI PUCK. It's really too slow to be enjoyable, but I leave it there as a testament to my early endeavors 🙂

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

An amazing element of this is the durability of old magnetic media. By 1983 I had filled two floppies with BASIC and Extended BASIC programs. Then followed 38 years during which those floppies survived in a third floor attic that is hot in the summer and cold in the winter. I made absolutely no effort to protect them. Upon resurrecting a TI system at the onset of the pandemic I was astounded to find that the floppies, which by then were sliding around the floor of a crawl space, were still perfectly readable. I also had the cassettes in a junk drawer and they were still readable too. I can only hope to be as durable. 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, senior_falcon said:

You have inspired me to look for a few TI BASIC programs I wrote back in 1984 or thereabouts. I think I have them on tape and I printed out 2 of them with a typewriter.

Go for it! Don't let these little threads of computer history be lost to time! Dig them up and share them!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...