Author Topic: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!  (Read 46831 times)

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Offline RJSVTopic starter

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ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« on: January 26, 2024, 09:37:39 pm »
   Thanks to Discover Mag, the coverage on Origami being shrunk down in many applications, got me thinking, (mainly about existing work in digital logic gates).

   Picture shows a thing, intended just for illustration; a carelessly wound up plastic bag, and that sucker untwisted, taking up almost a full minute, moving in slow motion across the surface, as it unfolded.   Amazing is how easy the mechanical 'device' build potential is, ...almost 'pesky' !
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2024, 09:41:27 pm »
This second picture features the 'wound up' plastic just as released, to un-twist.
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2024, 09:53:59 pm »
   The first challenge would be to design an Origami equivalent (or close) to the typical RS Latch, like the '7474 flipflop.
   The paper folded would be about hand-sized, and store something in the variable folds...I'm looking at storing as an IN or OUT pointing triangle, or pyramid shaped projection, in the paper.
   Schematically, the switching structure could be a 'dimple' in a bigger dome-shaped base, either in, or pointing outward.  Then, (as picture diagram shows) a system 'BUS' line would be a series of those domes, each positioned to bump the next dome, when a 'pulse' comes through ...(whatever THAT is,...I'm a software guy).

   In such a Mechanical activated system, (shrunk down of course), might be advantage to have electronic storage on-board, for mass quantities of code segments for use.
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2024, 10:11:29 pm »
   Doing such a project, (and seeing the way such things often go, lol), it's tempting to try using a supervised random crumpling of paper.

   A mechanical R-S Flipflop would have placed to push, similar to a push button, where the little push will cause a folded area to change, usually a simpler bi-stable deal, but would be like a mechanical latching push-button.
Push on the 'S' or 'SET' area, and the origami unit assumes the 'SET' type of shape possible.
But it's the reading and subsequent BUS activity that is challenging, to think up!
   You need a simple 'Reader' or synchronizer pulse input, that, (somehow), gets transfered out as data just read, by being different, according to the data being read;  That means that, for example, a 'dimple' raising output could come on either an outlet labeled as 'zero' or another as '1', according to system word size.

   Note that the method is representing a binary number, but actually uses just symbols, not caring about a binary 'state'.   That's actually literally 'Base One', an argument best left neglected for now ...

   But the little Origami test device would resemble an older switch box, say for a drill press or other heavier shop machine, having a Start button, etc.
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2024, 12:24:09 am »
   The way I see this working, is of course more than just flipflop storage.   With a 'Dry BUS'  the data is asserted by a brief, pulse-like or transient pushing force.
   By way of an interrogation pulse, (I like to call 'Read-Sync), all the business of 'CE' or 'Chip Enable' is avoided, as the controller issues a simple 'RS' to read contents.  This way, besides handling BUS contentions, the (origami) device can actively transmit or send a typical 'zero' as that being a symbol, for purposes of data transfer.
   An example could be using 16 of the origami gates (or latches), as implementation of a
 four-bit system (BUS)...  That is; it's made up of 16 'gates' that as a set will have only one gate active, thus it implements an equivalent of 4-bit binary, while 16 physical channels are observed.

   Looking at the twisted, folded cardboard thingy, you can imagine how the output, for each of the particular states, would be the rise up of the pyramid or triangle shape, thus pushing on that, distinct BUS line, going next to the device doing the reading.

   That next device would have been set-up already, by way of path setting or, really, addressing.   The incoming 'push' or mechanical pulse would determine which device state gets set.   First would be the simple 0 and 1 set, as a single binary-like function set.
 

Online ebastler

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2024, 08:54:36 am »
If I understand you right, the fundamental flip-flop you have in mind is a bistable structure made of paper. There is published work in that direction, although the main thrust seems to be structural components and building techniques. (E.g inflatable structures which then stay stable in the expanded configuration, without needing sustained air pressure to support them.) If you want to search for them, including the "bistable" search term is probably going to be helpful.

But I see big challenges in building read-out and control mechanisms from paper too. Especially without glue, using folding only, in proper Origami fashion.

Since you have shown interest in different mechanical binary computer designs in the past -- have you ever looked into Konrad Zuse's Z1? A fully mechanical binary computer, made from sheet metal logic gates and driven by an electric motor, built from 1936 to 1938 in his parents' living room. The gate design is well-documented, although not easy to understand.  :)
 
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Online SiliconWizard

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2024, 06:09:46 am »
What about quantum Origami?
 

Offline AVGresponding

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2024, 10:11:30 am »
What about quantum Origami?

We already have that, it's called "protein folding".
nuqDaq yuch Dapol?
Addiction count: Agilent-AVO-BlackStar-Brymen-Chauvin Arnoux-Fluke-GenRad-Hameg-HP-Keithley-IsoTech-Mastech-Megger-Metrix-Micronta-Racal-RFL-Siglent-Solartron-Tektronix-Thurlby-Time Electronics-TTi-UniT
 
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Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2024, 05:27:52 pm »
   Yes, ebastler, we've crossed paths on this before...many mechanical systems would have to rely on so-called 'Dry BUS' interfacing, where, as opposed to the standard TTL style of output, each device only manipulates the data BUS during a short little 'pulse', rather than over some timed or clocked interval.
   Results are similar, though, but it's just that there isn't any interface or chip-enable on each of the multiple connected devices, the READ command impulse serves to be re-used, as a properly formatted output, as a fully decoded signal (thats the BASE ONE argument....).

   I'm imagining using those saucer or dome shaped logic 'gates', where an outward dimple is considered the 'on or One' device state.  Plus, though, there needs to be a relaxation mechanism, returning a 'dimple' back to the relaxed state.  THAT could be a tough problem, as regards to device delay or throughput limits.
But my initial idea is to attach a second dome/dimple component, one that gets pushed into the path required, as the signal passing mechanism...while some other device or group of devices has such a dimple switch put into 'no-pass' mode.  That way you've gotten a means for reading one device's state, and putting it 'on the BUS'.
   You get a similar outcome, inside each single microprocessor action, as takes place now, with using the 'CE' logic to determine BUS access privalege.

   On this type of system, say with 16 states, when transferring a number, like a '7', that single pulse happening on the '7' line is uncoded, and simply is saying a command, to 'Set in a 7' to a device (being written with the data).

   Much of the LS 7474 RS Latch functionality is fairly easy to imagine,...in an origami, but it is the data transfer stuff that is critically needed for full use among the various BUS connected devices.  A general purpose way to do the data transfers necessary.
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2024, 07:57:42 pm »
CORRECTION:  Sorry, I had meant to say, recalling article on ORIGAMI was actually National Geographic...(not Discover).

   Viewing the enclosed photo, you can see I've used a US Government letter, as a trial folded randomly, as random Origami, as suggested might be just as good a method, vs. designed folds, where each randomly folded object is then tested (for the function you'd want).
That's part of the 'design' process that I found interesting.
   Now looking at specific function, from the TTL '7474 Latch you've also a clocked data input.
When testing for that you would need two fingers; one to be 'poking' in a device clock action, and a second finger to 'poke' in the data bit, in some fashion, as to whether it's conventional 0 or 1 type, to be pushing or not, or whether it's explicit; by way of 'poking' on either a zero input or a discrete, separate 'ones' input (on the paper origami surface).

   You would be pushing on the data input, that way, plus you would then 'push' on the clock, as trying to get as close as possible to emulating the LS7474 gate actions.
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2024, 10:08:42 pm »
   A preliminary layout schematic for a data carrying BUS line, or channel, is pictured, showing side views of each dome, each dome having a revert to base state, after a (hopefully) short time.
   Moving from left to right, on the illustration, the couple of currently active domes are in the cascade ... and soon that wave of cascading dime 'dimples' will be over to the gap shown.  At that point there may, or may not, be a dome used as temporary link, in the cascade chain, which could spell the end of that pulse cascade.
   Doing that (schematic above) on two separate outputs would give the proper function, doing a multi-position switch, (or one to several
selections).
 

Online ebastler

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2024, 10:27:48 pm »
Hmm, so far I can't see how you plan to achieve logic functions (and control over them) with this approach.

The arrangement in you latest drawing seems to do somehting similar to a row of dominos: Push one brick, that will tip over the neighboring one, etc. -- in a cascade that can't be controlled further once it has been started. The timing seems to be defined by hard-to-control implementation details of the individual elements and their interaction (stiffness, hysteresis and distance of your "bubbles"), rather than by a central clock. And how would basic logic functions (AND, OR etc.) be achieved?

I might be missing something; or maybe what you have is just a nucleus and those missing aspects have yet to be developed?
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2024, 10:45:32 pm »
   Actually, I'm a kind of a Data Transfer snob, but seriously the ALU and regular logic stuff is, quite trivial, in comparison with the whole traffic control aspects.   It's largely done in symbol form, which avoids the 'voltage not there' or other aspects of Boolean.
   You might call this 'The Abandonment of Binary...', maybe a little dramatic, but it's more a supplement.   My imagined personal 'system' would have a modern electronic processor, mostly for the huge memory possible there.
That is, besides the customized Origami included.

   Starting at hand and eye convenient sizes, approx. fist sized, but then (would like) shrunk down a modest amount...say 80 microns component size (per origami gate).
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2024, 10:47:51 pm »
   Picture shows an equivalent of some origami 'dome', bi-stable dimple would perhaps be a different composition.

   All speculation / speculation
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #14 on: January 31, 2024, 06:34:50 pm »
   As to the various BUS and signal concepts;
I've done some coverage here on EEVBLOG before, in recent years and don't wish to simply repeat the material (boring ?).
   After careful consideration, I feel there is enough potential interest, and newer readers, for justifying improving a clean / detailed presentation.
   
   Dictionary 'BINARY' means having two parts, or things, for numerical notation that has '2' rather than '10' as a base.

   First thing is to distinguish things, where something like an electrical BUS can have two valid 'states'...but may or may not be a part of a larger scheme of encoding numbers, for transmission or for direct processing.
   A decimal based system, for example, could be (internally) using typical two-state or
  'ON-OFF' switches, but would still be considered as 'Decimal Based' in it's main interactions (with other electrical circuitry).  THAT, by analogy, would be like saying that us humans utilize speech in a myrid of language style forms, but create  that speech through common breath and 'utterance' actions....vowels consanances, etc.

   In the diagram you can see obviously two-state switches, but which are implementing something as a group (of four signals).  Reasons for getting so specific is that confusion can set in, between some device, having two valid states, and a larger context, where multiple signals are organized in some specific way, and aren't (necessarily or purely) binary numerically.
That also is the case when two valid defined states exist on a BUS voltage line or channel.
   
   Consider a hybrid, for example:
   Suppose you've built an 8-bit (8 signal) BUS, having 7 bits of binary coded number, plus having a Parity bit.  Now, virtually all of that is built of binary components, yet the ultimate result is not, purely, a binary coded 'word' (due to the presence of the special Parity bit).
Closest maybe would be to call that 8-bit system a 'variation on binary coded numerically'.
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #15 on: February 01, 2024, 06:20:03 am »
   Reader ebastler, please hang-on a little bit, while I attempt to explain thoughts on the use of 'BASE ONE' in calculations or counting.
Jumping ahead of myself, slightly here, an advantage to be gained is that easy translations are do-able while staying within the definition.
That means using conventional looking right and left shifts can be utilized for making usual increments, or decrements, of your BUS system 'word'.
   For doing the simple translation you will need a defined style or format that has ONLY one single signal  within each word.   Contrast that with the defined 'UNARY' base one word (see Wiki), where the Unary format resembles a Tally;   To represent the number '3' for example, you would have '0000 0111' in a simple Tally style.  (That example having word range, from 0 up to '8' max.)

   For the BUS style I'm suggesting, you would turn on a SINGLE position, or BUS channel, vs that Tally style, just mentioned.  That way, a number like '0000 1000' (using 8 BUS lines or positions), is representing a 'three' and is only distantly similar, to the Unary representation.

   You could call that a 'one signal and only one' style, and that's the format that can be easily translated, by way of BUS line shifts or other manipulation.   Note that a ZERO value would look like '0000 0001'  which, as was explained, provides the same opportunity to use shifting.
To bump a zero (increment) by adding one to it
you simply need a segment of BUS that translates via conventional left shift.
   Other simple general purpose translations are also possible.   For example, you could pass all values unchanged except for any '3', which could be altered (translated) into another BUS value, such as changed into a '0' value.  Although that's an odd-ball function, it can be easily done.

   The better calculation results come when you start using 'LOOKUP TABLE' style ALU calculations....avoiding using logic manipulations altogether.
 

Online ebastler

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #16 on: February 01, 2024, 07:22:14 am »
Hi RJSV -- we may be using different nomenclature here. What you discuss as different "bus" designs, I would call different number representations.

A "bus", in my book, is a device which transfers data from one source (or one from a multitude of selectable sources) to one or more destinations. In the typical electronic computer, a group of wires, with multiplexers and drivers as needed. In a mechanical computer, a set of levers or similar devices.

Building a bus from Origami elements seems challenging to me. The cascade of bistable "bubbles" which you showed earlier can indeed transmit information (in a "falling dominos" way) -- but can it transmit both 0s and 1s in the same direction? Can it be coupled to multiple inputs and outputs?

Regarding number representations, I am not sure whether the unary system is the right one for a "paper computer". I can see how it is useful when you base a computer design on movable discrete objects, like marbles. But for a computer designed from stationary flip-flops, I don't see how a unary design helps:

Compared to a binary number representation, unary requires a much larger number of flip-flops to represent a given range of numerical values. And how would you implement addition, subtraction, comparison?  For a marble-based computer, you can merge or split sets of marbles, compare two sets on a balance etc. But for a computer based on stationary flip-flops, I don't see an efficient way of performing these operations in unary representation.

Edit: That other representation you suggested (setting one bit and one bit only) is also known in the literature; often called "one hot" encoding. It is used frequently to represent a discrete set of states, e.g. to control actions in a state machine: Having one active bit per state makes it easy to let these bits control other logic, depending on the current state. But again, I don't see an obvious way to do arithmetics with "one hot" encoding. It is difficult to beat binary representation there, where a one-bit full adder with carry is all you need as your basic functional element, and these can be cascaded as needed... 
« Last Edit: February 01, 2024, 08:11:39 am by ebastler »
 
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Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #17 on: February 03, 2024, 08:37:55 pm »
   ebastler, thanks for good questions!
   One motivation for using some alternate forms, from more familiar binary, could actually be that the differing needs call for it, (perhaps even being the 'ONLY' way forward...that's a convenient excuse.
   But, while offering up excuses, I have to point out;  some of the past projects have involved various forms useful for TEACHING...and that brought forward a whole spectrum of systems that are BIG, Noisy sometimes, and perhaps loaded with whimsical (and useless) structures, designed to catch the attention of the, um, errr, 'typical 7 year old' student.   In that context, a 9 foot tall (3 meters) 'system' has the appeal and attention holding power that teachers seek.

   Now as to some recent questions: with the 'dry bus' you don't have the multiple devices hanging on, but rather there is a tree-like decode, for ultimately sending to only one 'target' place.
   In the diagram included, the decoded are each done as '1 of 4' to simplify, where the binary range equivalent is '2 bits'.   This scheme also include a signal to READ, along with, in this example case, the '4' states that can be written.
So, in my diagram, each of FIVE total lines exist in that read and write BUS.
   One consolation is that the address numbers are already in 'decode' form, and thus can be used straightforward, for that 'tree' decode process.  I found that simple decoding or setting up the path switches can be done serially, once per each address word, thus completing the path through the 'tree' to ultimate target location.
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #18 on: February 03, 2024, 09:00:21 pm »
   Now you DID, however, miss the biggest feature, of the 'One hot' stuff, which is the ability to avoid the (awkward) mechanisms for transmission of the 'zero' state, which is neither a positive signal, nor any other sense of 'action'.
(Sorry, I know it's an awkward explanation).
The 'zero' case, especially with voltages, is usually supplied by a default mechanism,...problematic for mechanical devices, especially with non-clocked or asynchronous.
   With this symbolic oriented system, any 'zeroes' aren't treated as such, any different than any other value, in the range of your 'word'.
A 'zero' is simply another pulse, although it does get treated properly for doing math.
Plus, that keeps some kind of pulse there, for when you want to translate, like 0 to a '4', or when you want to increment, by moving the 'zero' symbol pulse over by one BUS column.
(You cannot move a binary style 'zero', in other words.)
 

Online ebastler

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #19 on: February 03, 2024, 10:07:19 pm »
   Now you DID, however, miss the biggest feature, of the 'One hot' stuff, which is the ability to avoid the (awkward) mechanisms for transmission of the 'zero' state, which is neither a positive signal, nor any other sense of 'action'.

I don't think I get that point. Let's say you have some valid value in an 8-bit "one hot" register -- i.e. one of the bits is set to '1', the others are '0'. Now you want to transmit that value to another register, which previously contained some other value.

Don't you have to transmit the '1' and the '0's as well? You need to overwrite the prior entry in the destination register, i.e. one of its bit was '1' before and needs to be changed to '0'. And you have to transmit 8 bits instead of the 3 which would be sufficient in a base-2 representation of the number, so you need more data lines.

Of course you could say "I clear the destination register first, and then I just transmit the '1' bit." But that would be possible in a base-2 representation as well, wouldn't it?
 

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Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #21 on: February 03, 2024, 11:03:15 pm »
   You still are missing the point....there isn't any mathematical meaning, to just sit there, transmitting, (or uttering) 'nothing'...in absense of having a qualifying clock, or flag.
   For example, suppose I'm just sitting in a chair, in front of you, totally silent.  That doesn't have any time quality, so not very useful.  Now, suppose we agreed, that you will write down what sounds there are, if any, when my flag is raised, then dropped.  That gives valid data.
   Suppose then, that we change the rule, so that you sit, waiting, and then act, to write down any active utterance, simply when it comes.  Doing things that way will allow communication even if the data sent is 0, or, literally due to the fact that your 'symbol' is an active thing, not just 'silence'.
   At any rate, in the context here, it simply implies that you can have one of your 'tokens' or symbolic characters in place of....(in place of what?).   I wrote it that way, because us humans even USE A SYMBOL, when denoting zero..or nothing...it's that little round circle ; ' 0 ' (sorry to be a little snarky).
=====================================

   As to the component counts, yes they do go up quite rapidly.  But that effect has its limits, enlarging each individual word (parts count), but not affecting in the larger scale.  That is, with a memory requirement of approx. equiv. to 100 bytes, you might have more components per word, but still have about 100 total words.

   Within the word for 16 states, you could see about 4 times more raw bulk, vs the 4 bits needed, in implementing straight conventional binary.   Like I said,  we may have to be dragged there, kicking and screaming ...
   It DOES help eliminate the need for decoding the 'efficient' binary coded bits...every time, lol.
 

Online ebastler

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #22 on: February 03, 2024, 11:25:32 pm »
Hmm... what is the difference in "symbol quality" between a one-hot set of many zeros and a one, vs. a base-2 set of some zeros and some ones? How would the two systems differ in their need of a clock (or lack thereof) when transmitting information?

This is either too philoshophical for me, or a bit half-baked on your end; I'm not sure which. ;)  Maybe if you could share a more complete proof-of-concept design, that would help to clarify.

What would be an interesting but feasible task? An adder maybe, which can add two numbers in the range of 0..3? Throw in subtraction or sign bits for each number for an extra challenge... 
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #23 on: February 04, 2024, 01:13:32 am »
   Maybe half-baked, I dunno.  Certainly half-explained, but it's a complex system, so...uh...
Some culture historians could or might describe Computer Sciences as up there, in the complexity list, of mankind's inventive scope.   Maybe nuclear science stuff is more intense.
So, here, the list of unexplained grows frustratingly long.
   "You haven't explained how instructions are fetched...".
   "...A simple adder, and you haven't even described the half-carry...."
Etc. etc.
   I'm talking mostly about an approach that puts priority on data movement, and formats that make it easier, or even POSSIBLE.
If you can get the useable data access, to a simple table, and also if it's fairly easy to move your ALU inputs into address space, then that gives your ALU functions, in rapid look-up form.

   Example 2 digit decimal multiply, '9 X 9' would need two tables, each of 100 positions (ten by ten).   The upper digit determines blocks of ten answers, while lower variable input (X), determines position of an answer digit.  You will need a ROM block for the '1' and another for the high digit answer, '8'.
   Of course, this whole thing is potentially quite bulky, and overkill when doing simple addition, but on the other hand does replace a bunch of 'random' logic.


BTW, example of a serial interface, such as RS232, notice that each character uses a 'Start bit', as an explicit and noticable flag, to the receiver as a 'heads up' alert.  That's because your receiving device sees that as an active assertion, vs and idle line.

   We could go round and round, arguing....somewhat like arguing over a primitive, where there isn't much substance showing...like arguing over the meaning of 'THE'.
   But hold on, and keep asking,...it's worth while

   I did get some extra ideas, suppose you add an extra column, to the 'One Hot' definition;
   '0000 0000' would be invalid / inactive.
   '0000 0001' would be a '0', numerically
   '0000 0010' = 1
   '0000 0100' = 2 etc
That would help get away from the whole 'zero is nothing' conundrum.

   Ditto for the 'Tally sheet' format, (where each representation is original number +1.)
 

Offline RJSVTopic starter

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Re: ORIGAMI LOGIC, ? Yeah, sure, I'll try that!
« Reply #24 on: February 04, 2024, 01:30:30 am »
   Going a more traditional route, to describe operation of an ADDER, I would first consider using a loop, although a clumsy and slow solution. 
   Taking something like X + Y; you would first test the Y value, ending if it's zero.
For inside the loop, increment X and decrement Y, then test Y for done.   All very straightforward (but slow).

   Some of the most AWKWARD code, I bet, in an origami computer, would be the code that toils to perform some legacy binary based function (you guessed it).
 


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