Free Trial

Safari Books Online is a digital library providing on-demand subscription access to thousands of learning resources.

Share this Page URL
Help

Part Five > MacBASICJune 1985 - Pg. 254

MacBASIC June 1985 The sad story of MacBasic When the Apple II was first introduced in April 1977, it couldn't do very much because there were few applications written for it. We knew it was important to include some kind of programming language so users, who were mostly hobbyists, could write their own programs. BASIC, designed by two Dartmouth professors in the 1960s for teaching introductory programming, became the language of choice for early microcomputers because it was interactive and easy to use. The Apple II included a BASIC interpreter known as Integer BASIC that Steve Wozniak wrote from scratch. It was stored in 5K bytes of ROM on the motherboard and was almost as idiosyncratically brilliant as his hardware design. It also came with Microsoft's BASIC interpreter, dubbed Applesoft BASIC, on cassette tape. Sadly, Applesoft eventually displaced Integer BASIC in ROM in the Apple II Plus because it had the floating-point math routines Woz never got around to finishing. Donn Denman started working at Apple around the same time I did in the summer of 1979. His job was to work with Randy Wigginton on porting Applesoft BASIC to the Apple III. They needed to rewrite parts of it to deal with the Apple III's tricky segmented memory addressing, as well as to port it to SOS, the new operating system designed for the Apple III. It was easy for me to track Donn's steady progress because he sat in the cubicle across from mine.