About RTS Software

Hi, I'm Bryan Schappel and I am the “webmaster” of this site. I am putting up this site to have some fun. I wanted to bring all of the software I've written over the years out of storage and put it on the web. Give it a new life. Perhaps inspire someone else to take up the joy of programming.

Where it all began
Back in the early 1980's I discovered something called an Atari 800 personal computer. These machines dominated the computer lab at my high school. Of course, I instantly fell in love with these little buggers.

I enrolled in the computing classes that were offered in my school. The computer classes were, for me, the new "shop" classes. I had always enjoyed woodworking classes - nothing beats the satisfaction of making something with your own hands. (In fact I'm still an amateur carpenter.) The computer became another way for me to create.

I didn't really get into the computer until I met Barry Kolbe. Barry was, and still is, a math teacher at my old high school. Barry was bitten by the computer bug as well and had also found ANALOG Computing magazine. Barry used the computer in his classroom to demonstrate polar graphing and other things. One day he pulled out some games he had typed in from ANALOG. I was floored.

Barry was not too fond of typing in all of those programs. He was rather resourceful. He would trade programs that he had already typed in for my typing skills (and the typing skills of others). I'd type in new programs and get the programs Barry already had. Pretty nice arrangement in retrospect.

It was during this typing phase that I became incredibly interested in what all of those little numbers I was entering actually meant. Barry started to teach me assembly language. I bought a few books and went to town. I think I taught myself 6502 assembly in a month or so.

I learned to program computers from the lowest level. Actual machine language. I could not afford my own assembler when I started programming so I would write all of the code out in assembly on paper and then manually compile the source. I then wrote a simple BASIC program that "poked" my assembly code into memory and I'd run it.

Barry, being resourceful again, would throw little programming problems my way. In no time we were partners and having a great time writing software together.

The big time
In 1983 I submitted my first program to ANALOG Computing. It was a 6502 debugging utility I named DEBUG+. At this time I met Clayton Walnum. (Visit Clay's site. You'll learn some more.) Clay was my editor. He also helped me make my software user friendly. He had a wonderful knack for getting his way - if you didn't make the changes he wanted he wouldn't accept your work for publication. This was a great motivational technique.

As time passed
Over the years my friendship with Barry and Clay grew. The team of Barry and Bryan published more programs in the pages of ANALOG and ST-Log than any other contributors. We had many great years of software publishing. Those years are documented on this site.

I still count Barry and Clay as some of my closest friends. We still stay in touch. Without their help this site would not be here.

Let's have some fun!

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