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Author Topic: A very sad day in Microcat's history  (Read 1941 times)

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Offline DarkestEx

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A very sad day in Microcat's history
« on: January 12, 2016, 08:14:50 pm »
Hello everybody!

After thinking about this step for some time, we come to the conclusion that we are not up to the task of finishing the project (currently?) :(
We had big issues with production, couldn't find a factory, had issues with the PCB prototype and too few money to get it working.
There will most likely not be a PCB version of it and we will not sell it or do a kickstarter. We have started another project that we think is simpler for us to make, easier to produce and a lot more fun, trust me :)
The people who believed in the microcat and helped will still be awarded. If you have interest in our new project, you will still get your discount. I hold my promise!
I can't talk about the new project yet, but it has something to do with Z80, that's said. And it is all DIP parts, no stupid .4mm pin pich (unlike the Microcat :-\)

The prototype will be finished and we will not let Claw die. It could still be handy for other projects. I hope I have not disapointed anybody too much and I feel sad too.
Best wishes,
Benedikt M. (DarkestEx) and Iwert H. (adekto)
« Last Edit: January 12, 2016, 11:45:02 pm by DarkestEx »


  • Calculators owned: TI-84+, Casio 101-S, RPN-Calc, Hewlett-Packard 100LX, Hewlett-Packard 95LX
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Offline xlibman

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Re: A very sad day in Microcat's history
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2016, 11:39:15 pm »
Sucks to hear man, although not to offend, I am not surprised, given what happened to OTCalc, LibreCalc and the many other similar projects on Cemetech, EPS and Omni. The only one that succeeded was the WP34s from the HP community, but even then, that one is basically a reflashed HP 35s with a keypad sticker people can place over the existing keypad. The problem is that it requires a lot of planning, and while Microcat seemed to be planned well, there was still the issue of funds that seems to have been missed out on, plus the changes that caused cost increases.

I still think Microcat VM should live on, though, with Claw language. PICO-8 was fun to mess around with and it would be cool to have an alternative with different capabilities, and Claw could maybe be ported to color calculators such as the HP Prime (maybe a slower HP PPL version and a third-party firmware C version?)


I hope you stick around on CW for non-Microcat/z80 project activities as well.
  • Calculators owned: TI-57, 73, TI-80 (broken), TI-81, TI-82, TI-83, TI-83+ (broken), TI-83+ (broken), TI-83+SE (broken), TI-84+, TI-84+CSE, TI-84+CE, TI-85, TI-86, TI-89T, TI-92, TI-Nspire, TI-Nspire CX (semi-broken), HP 39gII, HP Prime, Casio fx-7000G, fx-7400G+, fx-7700GE, fx-9750G+, fx-9750GII, fx-9860G, cfx-9850G, FX-1.0+, fx-CG10, fx-CP400
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Offline Caleb Hansberry

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Re: A very sad day in Microcat's history
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2016, 08:30:42 am »
Bummer.
  • Consoles, mobile devices and vintage computers owned: HP Portable Plus 110, Toshiba T3100, GRiD 1660, TI-99/4A, and much more than I can list here

Offline DarkestEx

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Re: A very sad day in Microcat's history
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2016, 05:33:27 pm »
Sucks to hear man, although not to offend, I am not surprised, given what happened to OTCalc, LibreCalc and the many other similar projects on Cemetech, EPS and Omni. The only one that succeeded was the WP34s from the HP community, but even then, that one is basically a reflashed HP 35s with a keypad sticker people can place over the existing keypad. The problem is that it requires a lot of planning, and while Microcat seemed to be planned well, there was still the issue of funds that seems to have been missed out on, plus the changes that caused cost increases.

I still think Microcat VM should live on, though, with Claw language. PICO-8 was fun to mess around with and it would be cool to have an alternative with different capabilities, and Claw could maybe be ported to color calculators such as the HP Prime (maybe a slower HP PPL version and a third-party firmware C version?)


I hope you stick around on CW for non-Microcat/z80 project activities as well.
Yes Claw will still be finished at some point. Claw could surely easily be ported to basically anything given a C compiler and enough RAM.
It will be quite a lot of work though to finish it. We are barely at 20% or so.

And sure, I will of course stay here :)

Bummer.
Yes, indeed. I hoped to be able to finish it, but we're at a dead end. It might be possible to come back to the project at some point.

So here are most of the documents:
The allmighty spreadsheet
ClawWire

After all, we spent a total of approx. 631 euros and 59 cents for development.
This is a huge amount of money for two people who don't have a fixed income.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2016, 01:30:26 am by DarkestEx »
  • Calculators owned: TI-84+, Casio 101-S, RPN-Calc, Hewlett-Packard 100LX, Hewlett-Packard 95LX
  • Consoles, mobile devices and vintage computers owned: Hewlett-Packard 100LX, Hewlett-Packard 95LX, Original Commodore 64C, Tektronix AWG2021, IBM X60s, IBM X60t, Nintendo DS Lite, Nintendo GameBoy Color, Nintendo GameCube, Xbox 360, Palm m5


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Offline xlibman

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Re: A very sad day in Microcat's history
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2016, 10:35:30 pm »
I don't think Claw needs to be complex. Axe 0.0.5 had like 25 commands, yet it was still very loved and popular. It sucks that so much money had to be spent on Microcat. I hope you keep the parts in case one day you can revive it as an hardware. Maybe when you turn 18+?
  • Calculators owned: TI-57, 73, TI-80 (broken), TI-81, TI-82, TI-83, TI-83+ (broken), TI-83+ (broken), TI-83+SE (broken), TI-84+, TI-84+CSE, TI-84+CE, TI-85, TI-86, TI-89T, TI-92, TI-Nspire, TI-Nspire CX (semi-broken), HP 39gII, HP Prime, Casio fx-7000G, fx-7400G+, fx-7700GE, fx-9750G+, fx-9750GII, fx-9860G, cfx-9850G, FX-1.0+, fx-CG10, fx-CP400
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Offline DarkestEx

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Re: A very sad day in Microcat's history
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2016, 01:36:47 am »
I don't think Claw needs to be complex. Axe 0.0.5 had like 25 commands, yet it was still very loved and popular. It sucks that so much money had to be spent on Microcat. I hope you keep the parts in case one day you can revive it as an hardware. Maybe when you turn 18+?
Claw is a thing for it's own. It will be written in either assembler itself (a very easy stack based one), Claw high level language (preferrably) and the high level language with assembler snippets.
Well nothing changes when I become 18. I am probably not going to work for quite some time. So the microcat wouldn't change either. Maybe at some point it could be revived. We will have to see.
  • Calculators owned: TI-84+, Casio 101-S, RPN-Calc, Hewlett-Packard 100LX, Hewlett-Packard 95LX
  • Consoles, mobile devices and vintage computers owned: Hewlett-Packard 100LX, Hewlett-Packard 95LX, Original Commodore 64C, Tektronix AWG2021, IBM X60s, IBM X60t, Nintendo DS Lite, Nintendo GameBoy Color, Nintendo GameCube, Xbox 360, Palm m5


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Offline Ivoah

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Re: A very sad day in Microcat's history
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2016, 02:20:46 am »
Hello everybody!

After thinking about this step for some time, we come to the conclusion that we are not up to the task of finishing the project (currently?) :(
We had big issues with production, couldn't find a factory, had issues with the PCB prototype and too few money to get it working.
There will most likely not be a PCB version of it and we will not sell it or do a kickstarter. We have started another project that we think is simpler for us to make, easier to produce and a lot more fun, trust me :)
The people who believed in the microcat and helped will still be awarded. If you have interest in our new project, you will still get your discount. I hold my promise!
I can't talk about the new project yet, but it has something to do with Z80, that's said. And it is all DIP parts, no stupid .4mm pin pich (unlike the Microcat :-\)

The prototype will be finished and we will not let Claw die. It could still be handy for other projects. I hope I have not disapointed anybody too much and I feel sad too.
Best wishes,
Benedikt M. (DarkestEx) and Iwert H. (adekto)

Sorry that you couldn't finish it the Microcat, but I'm excited to hear more about your z80 project!
  • Calculators owned: TI-86 (now broken), TI SR-56, TI-Nspire CX CAS, TI-84+ SE, TI-84+ SE, TI-85, TI-73 Explorer VS, ViewScreen, TI-84+ CSE, TI-83+ SE

Offline xlibman

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Re: A very sad day in Microcat's history
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2016, 03:06:36 am »
I don't think Claw needs to be complex. Axe 0.0.5 had like 25 commands, yet it was still very loved and popular. It sucks that so much money had to be spent on Microcat. I hope you keep the parts in case one day you can revive it as an hardware. Maybe when you turn 18+?
Claw is a thing for it's own. It will be written in either assembler itself (a very easy stack based one), Claw high level language (preferrably) and the high level language with assembler snippets.
Well nothing changes when I become 18. I am probably not going to work for quite some time. So the microcat wouldn't change either. Maybe at some point it could be revived. We will have to see.
I don't think Claw needs to be complex. Axe 0.0.5 had like 25 commands, yet it was still very loved and popular. It sucks that so much money had to be spent on Microcat. I hope you keep the parts in case one day you can revive it as an hardware. Maybe when you turn 18+?
Claw is a thing for it's own. It will be written in either assembler itself (a very easy stack based one), Claw high level language (preferrably) and the high level language with assembler snippets.
Well nothing changes when I become 18. I am probably not going to work for quite some time. So the microcat wouldn't change either. Maybe at some point it could be revived. We will have to see.
Why can't you work at 18+? The legal working age in North America is 16-18 in most areas (or you can work before as newspaper deliverer/berry picker). Just don't work more than 15 hours a week if you still go to school.
  • Calculators owned: TI-57, 73, TI-80 (broken), TI-81, TI-82, TI-83, TI-83+ (broken), TI-83+ (broken), TI-83+SE (broken), TI-84+, TI-84+CSE, TI-84+CE, TI-85, TI-86, TI-89T, TI-92, TI-Nspire, TI-Nspire CX (semi-broken), HP 39gII, HP Prime, Casio fx-7000G, fx-7400G+, fx-7700GE, fx-9750G+, fx-9750GII, fx-9860G, cfx-9850G, FX-1.0+, fx-CG10, fx-CP400
  • Consoles, mobile devices and vintage computers owned: Samsung i5510, Nexus 5, Atari 2600, Lynx, SMS, Game Gear, Genesis, Dreamcast, NES, SNES, N64, GCN, Wii, Wii U, GBA, DS, 3DS, PS2, PS3, PS4, PSP, PSVita, XBox 360, XBOne

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Offline p4nix

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Re: A very sad day in Microcat's history
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2016, 09:50:20 am »
Well, many people in germany go to university and then you need the small amount of money you earn from a small job to actually live...
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Offline DarkestEx

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Re: A very sad day in Microcat's history
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2016, 03:37:03 pm »
Well I probably want to go to university. My parents would be supporting me and I am not sure if I have to work during that time as I could live at my grandparents. They live in a town with a good university.
  • Calculators owned: TI-84+, Casio 101-S, RPN-Calc, Hewlett-Packard 100LX, Hewlett-Packard 95LX
  • Consoles, mobile devices and vintage computers owned: Hewlett-Packard 100LX, Hewlett-Packard 95LX, Original Commodore 64C, Tektronix AWG2021, IBM X60s, IBM X60t, Nintendo DS Lite, Nintendo GameBoy Color, Nintendo GameCube, Xbox 360, Palm m5


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Offline DarkestEx

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Re: A very sad day in Microcat's history
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2016, 05:17:13 pm »
Sorry that you couldn't finish it the Microcat, but I'm excited to hear more about your z80 project!
I can't wait to post more about it. It is going to be a really nice way to develop your own Z80 kernels, simulate hardware to a real Z80, change the clock speed of a Z80 to match your use case, attach a serial console, VGA, sound and a keyboard to a Z80. I will keep you all updated.
  • Calculators owned: TI-84+, Casio 101-S, RPN-Calc, Hewlett-Packard 100LX, Hewlett-Packard 95LX
  • Consoles, mobile devices and vintage computers owned: Hewlett-Packard 100LX, Hewlett-Packard 95LX, Original Commodore 64C, Tektronix AWG2021, IBM X60s, IBM X60t, Nintendo DS Lite, Nintendo GameBoy Color, Nintendo GameCube, Xbox 360, Palm m5


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