Discovering Texas Instrument’s Neglected CPU

Texas Instruments isn’t the name you commonly listen to affiliated with the to start with microprocessor. But the TI TMX 1795 was an 8008 chip generated months right before the 8008. It was under no circumstances offered commercially, although, so it has been mainly neglected by most people today. But not [Ken Shirriff]. You can see a demo from 2015 of the gadget in the online video down below, far too.

The purpose the chips have the exact architecture is they have been built to substitute the similar big circuit board inside a Datapoint 2200 programmable terminal. These ended up significant beasts that could be programmed in Standard or PL/B.

Datapoint requested Intel to shrink the board to a chip because of to heating challenges — but soon after delays, they as an alternative changed the electricity source and shed curiosity in the machine. TI heard about the affair and desired in on the deal. However, Datapoint was unimpressed. The chip didn’t tolerate voltage fluctuations pretty effectively. Because they had replaced the electricity provide and experienced a new CPU design that was quicker than the chip would be. They ended up also unimpressed with how much stuff you had to increase to get a full procedure.

So why did the Intel 8008 do the job out in the marketplace but the TI chip didn’t? Just after all, Datapoint decided not to use the 8008, also. But as [Ken] factors out, the 8008 was substantially smaller than the TI chip and, so, was far more charge-successful to produce.

As regular, [Ken]’s posts are often attention-grabbing and enlightening. He’s appeared at a large amount of previous pcs. He’s even dug into outdated house hardware. Terrific stuff!

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