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This project aims to develop a multi-platform linking program
for use with all TI graphing calculators (TI73 ... V200PLT).
The GUI has been written with GTK+
why it all started ?
I have had Linux installed at home since
1997 and I am working more and more with Linux. During my 3 years in
classes, I have made some TI92 <-> PC link cables and provided a
to use them (WinLink92 for Windows 95) for my friends who have TI92s as
well as myself. Unfortunately, I couldn't find a similar program for
that would work with my TI92 link cable and as far as I could tell from
the need existed.
A first solution was WINE
(i.e. run WinLink92 under WINE). This works but this did not constitute
an efficient solution. As I am fond of electronics (digital electronics
and micro-processors/controllers) and computer science (Pascal and
programming), I decided to write one. All that remained was to find the
protocol (hardware and software specifications) providing the
between the TI calculator and the PC. Fortunately, a friend had got
specs. Unfortunately, these were incomplete and did not cover the
protocol. Thanks to some electronics, I managed to complete these specs.
My father was lucky enough to have an
oscilloscope which allowed me to get a general idea of the signals. The
problem is that an oscilloscope does not have any memory and so cannot
store a history of the signals. So, I got to work and built a sort of 2
channel oscilloscope with memory (actually a logic analyser) which
me to start sampling at any time and record them to look at later. The first version
based on an Intel 8032
microcontroller running at 12MHz
(1 million instructions per second) and was not fast enough to track
So, I chose another way: a DSP
Signal Processor) starter kit based
on a Texas Instruments TMS320C31 running at 50MHz (25 million
per second), equipped with 8Kb of embedded RAM to record the samples. I
also quite like the idea of working out the Texas Instrument's protocol
with a Texas Instruments card!
The first version allowed
some chronograms, but these still needed decoding. A friend (whom I
has suceeded in decoding them while I was installing Linux on his
PC. The hardware protocol was now decoded and now I could develop a
version which allows me to directly get the bytes exchanged between the
PC and the TI.