[vcf-midatlantic] First homebrew computer project

Joseph Giliberti kd2dhp at gmail.com
Sat Jan 1 19:48:42 UTC 2022

Greetings Everyone,
I'm Joe Giliberti. I had been a member of the original MARCH up until 10 or
so years ago, when a personal issue prompted me to leave. It also didn't
help matters that it took me more time than most to grow up into a
responsible adult. Now that many things have changed and that I've been
getting back into the hobby over the past few years, I've decided to come
back. I keep making plans to get to events but something always seems to
interfere. I'm really hoping I'll be able to get to the workshop on Sunday.

Any who, in the past few years I've been getting more and more into the
hobby, doing lots of reading to expand my knowledge beyond writing BASIC on
my Apple IIe. I've decided that I want to take a shot at constructing a
basic computer.

Over the years, I've been amassing component parts from estate sales and
one particularly lucky estate cleanout. Among other things, I've
accumulated thousands of capacitors, resistors, transistors and diodes,
hundreds of 7400 series TTL and quite a few microprocessors and support

I think I want to base the computer around an 8080. There are the two main
reasons I want to go this route:

-I have an 8080A and many of the support chips, most of which are of the
early gold and white ceramic design.
-Ultimately, I want the system to be capable of running CP/M

Initially, I'm not looking to make it overly complicated. Ideally, I'd like
to have a machine language monitor and TinyBASIC in ROM. I'd also like a
serial connection for I/O and a cassette interface for mass storage. If
someday I get really ambitious, I might look into things like video
hardware and floppy disk mass storage, but I need to take care of the
basics first

I still need to do a lot more research and study before I start doing
things like design and construction, but I would very much appreciate any
suggestions or feedback on my plans for this endeavor.

Thanks and Happy New Year!
Joe Giliberti

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