Saturday, April 24, 2021

Game Boy Link Ports & Cables & Peripherals

When Nintendo released its first handheld console, the Game Boy, it provided a Link Port to allow two players to play games with or against each other.  That Link Port is a simple bidirectional synchronous serial port and was not very fast but it was sufficient to allow two consoles to communicate with each other over a Link Cable.  In subsequent Game Boy models the Link Port became faster but it also took on different shapes.  The Link Port was carried over to the Game Boy Advance, but there were some differences.  In this article I will go over the various cable connectors, the official products which used the Link Port or converted one kind of link port to another and how Link Cables are wired.

Saturday, April 17, 2021

Floppy Drives - Single Density and Double Density, FM, MFM & GCR

In the IBM PC world, there is no such thing as "single density" floppy drives.  Floppy drives started out as double density and later matured into high density and even extra high density.  Those of us who grew up in a PC world had no need to know about "single density".  But where did single density come from and which systems used it?  Moreover, what happens when system builders try to stretch single density reading into double-density capacities?  The truth is a bit more complex than you might think.