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"You know that bit in Dr. Strangelove, when Peter Sellers is astride the nuclear missile? That's what it's like... You don't know where you're going, you're in no real control, you just know the journey's going to end very soon, and very badly!"

Jeremy Clarkson 
 .:[ Nothing doing ]:.Posted: 02:36 on Thursday, 22 June 2006 
State: sniffly  Music: Supper's Ready 

Well, it's been a very quiet month... the only thing of note that happened was me getting rather nostalgic and realising something about myself; i have a very varied taste in music. Now, a few people (no names but i'm sure she knows who she is) have said otherwise, but i was writing some notes up on Co-Axis and realised that there were loads of musical references in there; early Genesis (from Supper's Ready), T'pau, Squeeze, New Order... quite a range. As a result, i grabbed some MP3s of Foxtrot (the Genesis studio album that the epic Supper's Ready comes from) and i'd forgotten how fabulous the whole thing is.

In other "news" i've spent the day playing with Slang - a BASIC-inspired high level language for the C64 that compiles into pretty quick machine code. To use it natively needs a SuperCPU, but the output code will run on any C64 and there's a cross compiler for Windows and other operating systems that works very well indeed. As well as compiling to pretty well-optimised machine code, it's also possible to drop 6502 assembler commands into the source as well and have them assembled into place or include binary files for things like graphics and music (although i' had problems with that and am just loading files instead for now). But here's the million dollar question; why on Earth is anyone out there still bothering with BASIC on the C64 when Slang just totally obliterates it? In the space of this one evening i've got half a simple action game running and it's purely written in Slang but moving at a guaranteed 50 frames a second when compiled. When i have something more substantial, i'll release it along with the source... Yes, it's best used as a cross development tool but, as i've said about cross assembly in the past, if it was good enough for Ocean, Andrew Braybrook, System 3 and many more it's good enough for me!

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