Assembler Hacking: A Throwback to 40 Years Ago in Programming

Programming: Hacking in assembler like 40 years ago

40 years ago, the Internet was still a distant dream for ordinary people. The World Wide Web (WWW) and Python programming language did not exist yet. Instead, example programs were printed in assembly language. These programs could sometimes occupy many pages of tiny letters.

If you wanted to try these programs out, you had to type them out very carefully. Sometimes, you would need to have a lot of patience too. However, assembler programming can be charming.

c’t, a German computer magazine, has published an article on how to hack in assembler like 40 years ago. They have also written a small “typing” program for the Netwide Assembler (NASM).

Their program is not particularly optimized or elegant. However, it gradually draws colored lines on the screen based on a list of drawing instructions included in the last line using %include.

As you follow along with their program, you can learn more about the flow of assembler programming. This knowledge can be useful for those interested in understanding how some of the early computer programs were developed.

c’t offers a digital subscription for information technology and technology enthusiasts. Subscribers can gain access to exclusive tests, guides, and background information across multiple magazines, including c’t, iX, MIT Technology Review, Mac & i, and Make.

Subscribers can even read c’t photography content directly in their browsers. Interested readers can sign up for a free month trial before subscribing. Current subscribers can read the article immediately.

Overall, the article offers a fun glimpse into the past of computer programming, which can be both educational and entertaining for enthusiasts.

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