Sunday 18 November 2018

Just because a splash screen is obligatory...

Still working on getting the MEGA65 presentation software ready for Linux Conf in January.  We decided that no presentation software could exist without having an annoying splash screen that appears while it loads, and that the incongruity will be very fun during the presentation. Here is the current version of it (we will fix the colour glitches).

It uses a 240x128 256-colour logo converted from a PNG, and then displayed using the MEGA65's full-colour text mode. As the program for displaying this doesn't need to be too efficient, I am just writing it using CC65, the little C compiler for the C64.  All it really does is copy the screen and colour RAM to another area, and turn it into the two-bytes-per-character version required when using full-colour text mode with character sets with >256 chars, and then draw the characters for the splash logo onto that.  It also uses a neat trick of the VIC-IV, where you can tell it the firsts 256 characters are normal mono/multi-colour characters, and only higher character numbers are full-colour. This lets you easily mix in normal text, which in our case, for overlaying the logo was a really nice simple solution.  The entire source code is really quite simple. Here is the interesting parts:

void main(void)

    // Set CPU to full speed, enable VIC-IV IO registers

    // Go back to upper case, because CC65 programs start by

    // going to lower-case for some reason

    // Copy palette into place

    // $100 bytes each for red, green, and blue = $300 total
    // Copy splash logo to the top of RAM. The logo consists of

    // 30x16 8x8 full-colour characters, so 64 bytes per
    // character for a total of 30x16x64 = 30,720 bytes.
    // $58000 is near to top of the 384KB RAM

    // Copy screen to $57800 to make 16-bit version of screen

    // i.e. put the screen just before the character data
    // Do similar for colour RAM
    for(n=0;n<1000;n++) {
      // Screen RAM:

      // In 16-bit text mode, the character number is the lower
      // 13-bits. So when copying the C64 screen to this mode,
      // we can just copy the screen RAM byte with the character
      // number to the lower byte, and leave the upper byte
      // blank.

      // Colour RAM is similar, but the colour goes in the 2nd

      // byte (this is just how the VIC-IV works)

    // Draw logo on the screen.
    // 240 x 128 = 30 x 16 rows

    // Character numbers >256 in full-colour mode refer to 
    // fixed addresses of (character number)*64, so we have to
    // add $58000/64 = $1600 = 5632 to character number
    // which is x + y * 30.  These then get stored into the 
    // appropriate bytes of the screen memory at $57800.
    // we use lpoke() because the addresses are >$FFFF.
      for(y=0;y<16;y++) {
    // set 16-bit text mode, enable compositor, and full-colour

    // text mode for characters >255

    // set screen line length to 40*2=80 bytes 

    // Move start of screen address to $057800
    POKE(0xD060U,0x00); POKE(0xD061U,0x78); POKE(0xD062U,0x05);
    // Set colour RAM start to $FF80000 + $0800
    POKE(0xD064U,0x00); POKE(0xD065U,0x08);

    // Then pretend to load for now
    while(1) {
      for(n=0;n<12000;n++) continue;
      for(x=0;x<25;x++) continue;

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