Demo Application for a 6502 Floating Point Math Package

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Screen Shot of Calc65

This may represent the epitome of dragging obsolete technology into the 21st century, but better late than never!

Here you will find source code for a full-featured, 6502 floating point scientific math package.  The routines are coded for assembly with the cba65 assembler described elsewhere on this website. Available routines include add, subtract, multiply, divide, square root, and all the trigonometric and inverse trigonometric functions. Natural log, exponential, and all hyperbolic and inverse hyperbolic functions are also included, as well as a few utility functions.

The calculator which demonstrates the math package consists of a Windows user interface, a 6502 emulator, and the assembled object code in *.h6x file format. Rounding has not been consistently implemented as yet, so there will sometimes be an unnecessarily large loss in precision when complex functions or multiple operations are involved. Caveat emptor.

Internally, the math routines use Cordic algorithms and similar strategies involving pseudo-multiplication and pseudo-division. The square root routine employs non-restoring pseudo-division as described in this paper. The BCD number format occupies 8 bytes and is described in the source code, a fragment of which is displayed here. Note that there are 12 mantissa digits and 3 exponent digits supporting a maximum value of  +9.999999999 E+999.

Floating Point Number Format for

This internal format can be represented in printed form as:


where the 'D's represent mantissa or exponent digits.

This package is not production quality code. It is still at beta testing level, so be prepared to encounter bugs. There are unused functions and tables which have not been purged from the package, so it requires more RAM space than necessary. I will investigate any problems reported by users, but at the moment I am focusing my attention on an extended precision version of the routines which I will post later.

NOTE: This code could motivate a homebrew project to build a simple calculator using an LCD or LED display, a 6502, a keypad, and suitable memory.