2020: NameSpaces are going to be implemented this year to better separate content. OS-9 Al (talk) 11:18, 15 April 2020 (CDT)
2020-05-17: If a page gives you an error about some revision not being found, just EDIT the page and the old page should appear in the editor. If it does, just SAVE that and the page should be restored. OS-9 Al (talk) 12:22, 17 May 2020 (CDT)
CoCo3 Easter Egg
The Color Computer 3 contained an easter egg.
The above picture can be displayed on every Color Computer 3 ever made. But the instructions on how to bring it up were kept secret. That is what makes it an Easter Egg. To see the picture hold down the Control and Alternate keys on the CoCo's keyboard and press the reset button on the back right of the Color Computer. This puts the CoCo into a special mode where the only thing it can do is display this picture. A nitfy side effect of this easter egg is now there is an easy way to to generate a cold restart of the machine. Pressing the reset button again will produce the standard Color Computer 3 power on sequence.
Tandy Contemplates a "CoCo 3"
In 1985, the design and development of the Color Computer 3 began in earnest.
Tandy Contracts Microware
During the design of the Color Computer 3 hardware, Tandy commissioned Microware to extend the internal BASIC interpreter with new commands and functions. This proved to be somewhat problematic, since the BASIC ROM code was licensed from Microsoft. While there is no concrete knowledge of why Microsoft wasn't tasked with revamping their BASIC interpreter to support the features of the new Color Computer 3, there's conjecture that:
Irrespective of the reasoning, in the end Microware was tasked to write code patches which would extend Color BASIC to support the new features of the CoCo 3. This approach of "patching" would prevent any perceived licensing violations between Tandy and Microsoft.
The three people pictured in the Easter Egg are Mark Hawkins, Todd Earles and Tim Harris. They were Microware employees who worked on the additional functionality of the internal BASIC interpreter.
Were they the only ones? Why were they included in the picture? Did they work on OS-9 Level 2?
Frank Durda IV writes:
You don't know how many internal projects got put under the microscope by hardware management after that stunt, looking for what we now call "Easter Eggs" and as part of the witch hunt, killing what hardware management was calling "trivial" or unapproved functionality. A lot of good things died as a result of that stunt. It probably helped doom the Deluxe CoCo project too.
There is a single 32K ROM in the Color Computer 3. So the space needed to filled with something. *Grin*
Also, the Deluxe CoCo project was cancelled before the CoCo 3 project started so I think it is impossible to draw his final conclusion.
Q&A at Pennfest 2000
Mark Hawkins attended the Pennfest Color Computer Festival in the year 2000. During a question and answer session Mark answered qeustions regarding the Easter Egg.