Kestrel-2DX Booting a Prototype Forth Environment

A project log for Kestrel-2DX

The Kestrel-2DX, a specific embodiment of the Kestrel Computer Project (also on Hackaday), will help with new hardware bring-up.

Samuel A. Falvo IISamuel A. Falvo II 12/22/2017 at 01:010 Comments

Apologies for the lengthy update delay; life intervened as usual, and with the Hackaday contest over, I didn't put as much priority on releasing updates.

But, I was not idle!  As this video shows, the Kestrel-2DX is live and is now booting arbitrary binary blobs.

The computer is coming out of hard reset; it's actually waiting for input before the monitor comes up with a video display.  Once I have a TIM/V prompt, I use it to initialize the SD card, then to load the binary image into RAM, then to jump into it.

The image loaded is 4KB in size, and is the beginnings of a Forth interpreter made just for the Kestrel-2DX.  (The old Kestrel-3 eForth port won't work on the 2DX because it doesn't have enough memory for it.)

The Forth interpreter is not complete: literally, it only supports small decimal numbers and the ! operation.  It's got a long ways to go before supporting compilation.  Still, this is a positive development!  I'm quite excited!