This is the first time I’ve used GEOS. I wanted to use the Commodore 128 version, but the REU (RAM Expansion Unit) doesn’t support the 128 and I still don’t have an 80-column monitor. Perhaps the Commodore 64 version is better right now, but I still had some fun with the 128 version!
The default is black and white, but it supports 4-bit color.
It’s also the first time I’ve ever used a mouse on a Commodore. I cleaned the rollers a bit but it’s still quite a pain to use!
Even with this uncooperative mouse, I still managed to use the art program to make this beautiful, Monet-esque picture.
It’s not precisely multi-tasking, but you can load a couple of simple apps on top of your current main application, such as a calculator or a notepad.
More than the paint program, I really wanted to check out the Write application. With my 1541 Ultimate-II+, it can print to a file and that file may be used on a modern PC. But I need to get 80-column mode working first.
Just a personal experiment out of curiosity. I wrote this little program on my Commodore 128 and then again on my Commodore 16.
I was curious about the speed:
3rd place: Commodore 128 executed the code in 1 minute, 55 seconds before adding lines 5 and 135.
2nd place: Commodore 16 executed the code in 1 minute, 34 seconds.
1st place: Commodore 128 executed the code in 55 seconds after adding lines 5 and 135.
So clearly lines 5 and 135 are key. The FAST command blanks the screen and doubles the CPU speed. Output is revealed after the SLOW command is issued. This is only useful in 40-column mode. In 80-column mode, the CPU is always double speed!
I was also surprised by the color palette selected on the 16. I’m pretty new to the 264 series of computers. I know it has a bigger selection of colors than the 128. It seems like you can access more vibrant colors by issuing a second third argument to the COLOR command. The default 16 colors in the graphic mode seem so… Easter-ish.
Shortly after I posted about my Japanese Commodore 64, I found another one up for auction. I don’t need two, but this is the first one I’ve seen that has come with a Japanese-language user’s guide. For its age, it’s in amazing condition! By chance, the number-two bidder is in the same Facebook group as I am. When he read that I didn’t need anything but the user’s guide, we worked out a deal for him to buy the main unit directly from me.