What’s cooking in the TMS Labs: moving Delphi and FNC forward (and backward)!

  

Our ever growing FNC framework now already brings a whole portfolio of components to a myriad of devices and operating systems: Windows, Android, iOS, macOS, Linux, Raspbian, Web ….So, it is clear that our R&D team is always looking out for new technology and trying to be ahead of the curve. For this reason, our team was excited to be involved in a very forward looking project for a customer that brings Delphi and our FNC framework again on the bleeding edge of technology. For this project, we researched how we could bring the FNC framework to a new M1 CPU + NVidia Titan V based device that features an AI driven holographic display. We tweaked the Delphi OSX64 compiler to produce M1 CPU code as well as NVidia SIMD GPU instructions to render FNC on the holographic display. When we received the test device here, the results are without a doubt stunning! You can see a glimpse here:While playing with this cutting-edge technology, our team mesmerized how predictions of technology in movies of the seventies and eighties already got real and we wondered therefore, if we could bring Delphi and FNC at the same time to this for us nostalgic area. A first attempt was to port FNC to the Sharp LR35902 processor and after this was successful, it permitted us to run FNC on the Nintendo Game Boy. It is surprising how crisp the FNC graphics are rendered on the small Game Boy LCD screen as you can witness here:And this achievement inspired us to go back in time even further. Surprisingly this was somewhat easier as making Delphi compile on a Intel 8080 CP/M machine. We tweaked the original Turbo Pascal 8086 compiler to use only 8080 instructions and got it working. It was however a lot more effort to downscale the FNC graphics abstraction layer to a 80×25 character CRT screen. But as you know by now, we are not scared to make our hands dirty in such challenging task. It is with pride that we can share the first FNC components now also running on a CP/M driven Intel 8080 machine from 1974 connected to a Sperry Univac Uniscope 200 terminal. Are you still using devices for which you like to use Delphi and FNC? Let us know, it could become the next challenge of our team! We look forward to hear what nostalgic or futuristic device you would which to bring alive with your beloved development tools.

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