Please note, due to the Hackaday article, these have been selling very quickly. If Tindie shows it's out of stock, just add your name to the waitlist. They will be back in stock very soon. Scamp2 i...Read More…
Please note, due to the Hackaday article, these have been selling very quickly. If Tindie shows it's out of stock, just add your name to the waitlist. They will be back in stock very soon.
Scamp2 is a powerful Forth-based computer, designed with the express purpose of making Forth more accessible. Use it standalone, or with additional I/O modules, or interfaced to a breadboard design.
Forth is the programming language of choice used by NASA on many of its deep space missions. Discover for yourself why Forth is an amazing language for embedded systems development!
What is Forth?
Forth was created by Charles (“Chuck”) Moore in 1968, to control radio telescopes. When he wrote Forth, Charles Moore envisioned that the “fourth” generation of computers would be distributed controllers, in essence embedded systems (although that term had not yet been invented). Hence, he called his programming language “Fourth.” However, since the IBM 1130 that he used for development only allowed for five-character file names, the programming language became known simply as Forth.
Forth is unlike any other conventional programming language. Forth is an extensible, highly-interactive, stack-based language. It is extremely efficient and extremely versatile. The functionality of the language makes it ideal for debugging both system hardware and software.
Forth is commonly used in systems under development and is often retained by manufacturers in their computers. Forth was the first resident software on the then new Intel 8086 chip in 1978, and MacFORTH was the first resident development system for the Apple Macintosh in 1984. NASA’s Voyager spacecraft run Forth, providing for both efficient firmware and the ability to interactively debug across the vastness of space, and Forth was also used by NASA in many deep space missions to this day.
Forth is coded directly in assembly language both for speed of operation and to take advantage of the characteristics of the embedded computer.
Forth is at once a compiler, an interpreter, a debugger and, in a fashion, an operating system too. Forth is also a compiled language, but it is a compiled language with a difference. It is interactive, yet runs with an efficiency not far removed from hand-written machine code. Commands (known as words in Forth) get an immediate response. This, coupled with Forth’s ability to talk directly to hardware, makes it an excellent environment for embedded system applications.
Scamp is a self-contained Forth computer that you can use as the computing engine for your projects. It's easy to interface, and easy and quick to program using Forth, the world's best embedded programming language. To use a Scamp, you don't need to install any IDEs, compilers or development tools. FlashForth is preinstalled. Everything runs directly on Scamp, and all you need is a host computer with a USB interface and some terminal software.
It's used in schools and universities for research or teaching. It's used in home projects by hobbyists. Companies use Scamp in product development to rapidly prototype and debug their own hardware, or as the controller core of their next product. Scamps have been used for everything from controlling coffee roasters to robots. They've even been sold to CERN.
Requires a Micro B USB cable for power and communications, available as an option when ordering. A breadboard header is an optional extra.
The Scamp design and software are intended solely for hobbyist and prototyping use. Scamp is not designed for use in any application intended to support or sustain life, or any other application where a failure could create a situation where personal injury, death, damages to property or loss of data may occur. Do not use it in critical applications.
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Shane | April 20, 2021
Piero | April 2, 2020
Peter | April 2, 2020
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