This strange computer was designed to be a development system for 6502 based computers. It had no display except for a small 20 character LED screen and a very small thermal printer located directly on the motherboard which could print everything that was typed on the keyboard.
The board featured five 4 KB-ROM sockets. Two of them were dedicated to the AIM monitor program, including an instant input assembler (no labels) and a disassembler. Various programming languages (BASIC, FORTH...) or custom applications could be added in the three remaining sockets.
Several cards were developped for this machine, especially language cards and ROMs: a BASIC card (BASIC language with floating point mathematics capabilities), PL/65 (a mixture of the PL/1 and Algol languages), Instant Pascal (an interpreted version of Pascal), Assembler and the FORTH programming language.
Jacob Hertz remembers:
It had 3 function keys, which could be programmed with a jump instruction (assembler).
A CRT-Card was also developed for this computer.
I was the happy owner of one of those machines. We were a usergroup in Denmark in the late 70' and early 80'.
It came with full documentation including as far as I remember 4 books: A complete diagram, a complete hardware manual, a full commented bios listing, users guide and another book. It was one of the first complete microcomputers around.
Mark Reardon reports:
I was on the support team for this system from June 1979 until Jan. 2004. When you mention 'Sound' it made me remember that this system supported the use of two audio cassette recorders for mass storage. It could perform motor control on both. It would read source files from one and write the output to the other.
My boss told me that they expected to sell between 400 and 600 of these systems but the number exceeded 50,000. The original target market was embedded designers. Some of these designers actually embedded the AIM into their design. We sold a version without the keyboard, printer, and display, and with only 1k or RAM for $175.
The fifth manual Mr. Hertz remembers was the programming guide. When I was hired I was given a complete set of manuals, an AIM 65, and a phone. I tried to answer all of the customer's questions from the manuals before I consulted with the engineering staff. It was a great learning experience.
To previous posters, I have scanned the Forth manual and it''s available but I have no information on the Math package that I assume is the floating point mentioned here. I did install and test the entry points using the 5 and N keys so I think it''s the proper one. I have made EPROMs from these for those who want them...please see previous post for contact information about these or any other AIM parts you are needing. Tuesday 28th October 2008 Harry Dodgson (USA)
Just found this page - to use the Forth Math ROM, just use "N" and it will load the words into the dictionary. VLIST will show them. I don''''t have any documenation, but looking most of the routines can be determined from the names.
Saturday 11th November 2006 Juan Jerez (Spain)
I own an AIM-64 with the Forth ROM''s includding the floating point extenxions. Does anybody have the manual for the floating point ext. or know how to use the floating point words ?
Thursday 18th December 2014
The voltage needed to run the main board is 5VDC. The 24 VDC is needed for the printer to function only. The 12VDC rails are not needed to run the main board but are used when running TTY or RS232 interfaces when desired. I still buy and repair these computers for resale. My eBay user name is orgwood. I also have some spare parts/printers. I provide documentation to owners who contact me if I have it available especially for odd add-ons from the Computerist, Seawell, and MTU. If you have documentation, please don''t discard it but contact me as I scan it and post it on my page or send it on to others who host sites that store this sort of thing. I''m particularly in need of any hardware related to keyboards like the keycaps $ switches, but I have many Display PC boards for those missing theirs.