Messina Electronics - Johannesburg, South Africa
[1982 - 1984] continued...
I learnt the
Motorola µ6800 Assembler
language; used it,
to modify and to add functionality to the PCL language interpreter
or to write hardware test programs for the memory, screen, ports
and peripheral devices. One such modification was the replacement
of the unreliable cassette tape with battery-backed CMOS memory.
This mod ensured that "set-points" that were loaded on startup,
in a brewing application, remained in storage and were available at
all times, even if the computer was restarted either manually, or
automatically as a result of a power failure. This brewing control
application operated at a number of large breweries around South Africa,
including Garankuwa Breweries in Bophutatswana.
I supported the Commander accounting system, used by the
administration of the Messina Mines, located in the very northern
part of South Africa, on the border with Zimbabwe. It took a two
hours flight in a Beachcraft Baron dual engine airoplane to get
to Messina, where I spent the day repairing and testing their
system and returned to Johannesburg that same evening, with the
same aeroplane and same pilot.
Bateman Process Instrumentation - Johannesburg, South Africa
[1985 - 1989]
With the advent of the
, in the early days of MS-DOS (v2.1),
BPI distributed and supported
- a supervisory system designed in the
USA by "Heuristics" (today's Automation ONSPEC Software Inc.
operated on the rather sophisticated, way ahead of its time, Digital Research
BPI had limited access to the
source code, for which I was responsile for providing
local support. The package provided links to user written communication
drivers, which I have used to develop a number of additional drivers for
Modicon, Omron and Conet controllers.
1982 - 1989