Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Introducing the MEGA65 Retro Computer

Hello all,

For a few months now I have been working behind the scenes with the good folks at m-e-g-a.org, exploring our mutual desire to create a physical 8-bit computer in the spirit of the C65, but that is open-source and open-hardware so far as is possible, so that the community can sustain, improve and explore it.

Basically, we agreed that we wanted to do this, and that the C65GS was the logical basis for this, and thus the MEGA65 project was born, to take the C65GS core, to work together to improve it, and plan towards creating a physical form that is strongly reminiscent of the C65 prototypes.

Our initial announcement is online at http://www.m-e-g-a.org/mega65-introduction/.

This is also the point at which we are ready to offer pre-prepared FPGA bitstreams.

These bitstreams are still experimental, and updated bitstreams may break things that were working in previous bitstreams as we progressively spiral in on the final product.  This process might take another year or two depending on what support we can raise, being done voluntarily in our discretionary time as it is.

What we have decided to do to help support the project is to ask for a donation of your choosing to be given access to our FPGA bitstream build server that will contain the latest bitstreams.  Our desire is not to exclude anyone -- which is why we are not dictating a donation that is in any way representative of the costs of undertaking this project.  Also, everyone will still be free to compile the bitstreams themselves, but we hope that you will appreciate both the convenience and opportunity to support the project.

Finally, we now have a Twitter account (@Mega65Retro), and Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/MEGA65RetroComputer) -- so feel free to spread the word.