Skip to main content


Hammurabi (on Run Basic)

To celebrate 50+ years of BASIC, I've published an early version of the classic simulation, Hammurabi, on the Run Basic Hosting site. It ran "almost" unchanged -- line numbers, GOTOs and all. I'll publish the tweaked Run Basic code later, but here is the link to the game if you want to try it out right away. If you're interested in the original source, here is a nice article on the game at the Atari Archives. Have fun!
Recent posts

BASIC turns 50

Well, the BASIC language actually turned 50 on May 1, 2014, and I'm very late to the party. Born at Dartmouth in 1964 (along with the first commercial time sharing), here is the university's tribute page . There is even a great 38 minute documentary that they made for the occasion. 10 PRINT "ENJOY" 20 GOTO 10

User data and program failure

A paraphrase of Asimov's first law of robotics: A program shall not harm a user's data or through inaction allow a user's data to come to harm. Every software engineer should take this to heart when designing a program. A user's data (or content) is sacred. Under no circumstances should it ever be lost -- especially due to a failure of the program.

Liberty Basic in 2010

This past year has seen some modest progress in the world of Liberty Basic: Carl published a book titled Beginning Programming with Liberty BASIC . This is a great book -- I read it from cover to cover. Even if you're an experienced programmer, it is a fast way to get the gist of the language and you may even pick up a few new things along the way. Liberty Basic 4.04. This release offers better compatibility with Windows Vista and 7. It also fixes some bugs. I think it will be the last release of the 4.x version. Liberty Basic Pro. This is just 4.04 and Assist combined into a single product. Hopefully 2011 will be the year of Run Basic.

How to set the System Restore and Shadow Copy storage limit in Windows Vista

I ran into a problem recently where Windows Vista kept using up all of my available disk space for System Restore and Shadow Copy storage. There is a feature in the Disk Cleanup utility that lets you manually delete all but the most recent snapshot. I did that for months before I finally took the time to figure out how to set the limit. My problem was pretty extreme. My HP Pavilion laptop has a 105 gig disk drive. I have about 47 gigs free and over a period of about a month, Vista would use it all up. Vista is supposed to use only 15% of the hard disk for this storage, but apparently sometimes that limit can become UNBOUNDED. I don't know how that happens. To see the current setpoint for your system, go to a command prompt and type the following: vssadmin list shadowstorage You should see something like the following: To change the current setpoint for your system, type the following but change what's necessary to match your system. For example, you may need to change t

Run BASIC Hosting Service Launched

The new Run BASIC hosting service launched at midnight! Please visit for more details. Monthly and annual subscriptions are available. Run BASIC , a product by ShopTalk Systems, is a tool that makes it easy to create your own web applications. No computer science degree required . Run BASIC Hosting is a service that makes it easy to deploy your applications to the Internet. No IT experience required .