Dirty TRS-80 Has A Surprise Hack

[Adrian] had a TRS-80 model IV that looks like it was stored in a mulch pile. However, it seemed to have some surprises. The first hint that something was up was that the keyboard looks like a model III and there are two mystery knobs in the back.

So what’s going on? You” have to watch [Adrian’s] video below to find out. At about the six-minute mark, you’ll find that things are not at all what you might think.

Here’s a hint: strapped to the disk drive, there is a VHF and UHF tuner. No kidding. There were also some other odd parts inside, but we’d give away the surprise if we said more. The keyboard hack is — well, impressive might not be the right word. Surprising, maybe?s

Someone who once owned the machine definitely did a hack in the truest sense of the word. It required some surgery to get some activity on the computer. [Adrian] has some more troubleshooting to get the beast working, but we imagine we’ll see the troubleshooting in one or more future videos.

If you already know what the surprise is, it couldn’t help but remind us of this post, but we won’t say why so you can click it after you’ve watched the entire video. We were sort of surprised no bits of this computer showed up.

12 thoughts on “Dirty TRS-80 Has A Surprise Hack

  1. Adrian this is Adrian of Worcester MA. Very good presentation with some excellent sleuthing!
    I am 81 so had the pleasure of growing up with computing on a chip. In 1975 I was programming 4004/8008/8048 processors in machine code for a product we were selling to the FAA. By 1982 I had an Atari 400 and 800 operating with 8″ drives. I did not do a lot of actual Hacking as we know it today, I did experiment with different versions of the then Basic and some specialized operating systems for commercial computing. In the 70’s software and hardware were ‘spewing’ out of individuals and small companies like such a C change in technology deserved. It was exciting! Today I just play with Amateur Radio software on my i5 Lenovo laptop and occasionally on my i5 Tower hooked up to my HF rig.
    Thanks for your article. Looking forward th o the end of the story and beyond!
    Adrian Malcolm Zefffert

  2. Djeez Adrian! Gloves are not enough protection when working on this machine. Wear a mask, you really don’t want to breathe in any of that dust!

    I like your videos, please be more careful with your health so we can have lots more of them!


  3. Not much of an article. “There’s something I’d like to tell you about, but I won’t. Go to a completely different platform to learn about it. By the way, you have to deal with ads, and a long, drawn-out diatribe, whilst I could have just given you the key points in a 1,000-word-or-less summary.”

    Seems like Hackaday is leaning towards becoming a YouTube indexing service.

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