LEGO TC Logo

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Tom Owad's picture
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LEGO TC Logo

LEGO robotics became popular with mainstream with the release of Mindstorms, but there were a number of robotics kits previous to that. Tracing the history back, it's:

2009 Mindstorms NXT 2.0
2006 Mindstorms NXT
1998 Mindstorms
1995 DACTA Control Lab (9V)
1990 Technic Control Center (9V)
1987 TC Logo (4.5v)

TC Logo was available only through DACTA, which sold to schools. When DACTA discontinued and clearanced in 1996, my high school let me purchase one of the kits through them. In my senior year (2000) my high school got rid of their Apple IIe's and I took the computer lab home with me. I have a decent number of interface boxes and an assortment of (worn out) motors and lights. I'm short on interface cards, but they look reasonably easy to duplicate.

Here's the box:

And the interface board:

This is the Apple II interface card:

There's not much on the board besides a 6522 and some logic, so I'm hoping it will be easy to duplicate.

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Image icon box.jpg152.18 KB
Image icon interface.jpg163.83 KB
Image icon card.jpg158.85 KB
Image icon turtle.jpg152.42 KB
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Re: LEGO TC Logo

For the TC Logo, do you have the software? Was there a physical turtle that was driven by the Apple ][?

Tom Owad's picture
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Re: LEGO TC Logo

I have the disks. I haven't used them in a few years, but I found it on Asimov, too. One of the projects is a vehicle, which I think the instructions do call a turtle. It can be configured with bumpers (touch sensors) or an optical sensor to make it follow a line.

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Re: LEGO TC Logo

Does the Turtle hold a vertical pen?

Tom Owad's picture
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Re: LEGO TC Logo

Yes it does:

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Re: LEGO TC Logo

Any action on this project?

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Re: LEGO TC Logo

Just Acquired a Platinum IIe that had the 9767 card and cable installed if you are still looking for cards (and did not make your own)
Also, PM sent

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Re: LEGO TC Logo

This looks like it could be a lot of fun to experiment with.

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Re: LEGO TC Logo

Did you wind up making your own? I have more control boxes than I have 9767 cards, and I was just looking over what it might take to create a workable card. If you have some experience to share on how it went if you tried to build one, I'd be interested to hear. I was hoping I could swap in a 6820 instead of a 6522, since I have a few of those and I think they're compatible. I'm kind of a novice at this kind of prototyping, but I can hardly imagine an easier project to try to start off with.

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Re: LEGO TC Logo

I can't read the lettering, but I'm expecting that IC3 is a 74LS74. The 6522VIA needs some delays on the one of the clocks in order to work on the Apple II bus. There is an Apple Tech Note describing the circuit. I don't know for absolutely sure, but my Superproto board most likely could replace the Apple II interface card, by simply wiring in a header for the ribbon cable and possibly adding a couple of discrete components. The EEPROM on the Superproto could be left off, if you felt you didn't want it there.

regards,
Mike Willegal

www.willegal.net/superproto

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Re: LEGO TC Logo

It is indeed 74LS74, here is an image of one of my cards with more readable lettering:

I have one of the Superproto boards and was thinking just the same thing -- I could try to wire up something on a bare prototype board, but a lot of the work appears to already be done for me on the Superproto board. It might be overkill (in that the Superproto board seems to be already much more complex than the LEGO card) but at least it would be possibly a faster way to try to get something working. I'd still need to get a cable with a 20-pin connector for the interface box, but this is likely the route I'll take. I'll report back what happens, when I get around to attempting it.

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