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S > SORD  > M223 series   

M223 series

These computers were generally sold for specific professionnal use along with the appropriate software.

Two models were launched: the Sord MK II 203 and Sord MK II 223. The difference is that the 223 has 3 x S100 slots for easy expansion. Both have a special DMA channel for the disks (floppy and hard disk).

Some software was sold with them, which included the MFDOS, several Sord BASIC's, a compiled Basic (C-Basic) and many tools. The Fortran IV and the Cobol were also available.

For the M-223 and its S100 slots, 2 extensions were sold :

- A graphic card with high-resolution and 8 colors
- A/D and D/A convertor (16 x 12 bits channels for input and 2 x 8 bits channels for output)


Joe Hernandez remembers:
I remember introducing them in Puerto Rico in 1980 at a great celebration in the Sheraton Hotel in a conference organized by J. R. Hernandez & Associates, Inc (my company at the time), together with the Electronic Information Systems Directors Association (ADSEI in Spanish).
I programmed them in a language MicroCobol (a mix of basic and cobol) developed by a London Company of which I don't remember the name at this moment. We were converting their accounting system from the British to the American accounting method since there was no business system in English on those days for the PC. IBM introduced their first PC 5051 in 1981.
The retail price without software at that time was $12,800.00 plus another $5,000.00 for the whole integrating accounting system... - I never took off in this venture ;(

Harvey Platter specifies:
MicroCobol was the development language for BOS (Business Operating System). It was actually COBOL with the formating requirements stripped out and support for low level and system programming added.
MicroCobol compiled to an intermediate code, rather like the, then popular, P-Code or modern Java but altogether more efficient than either. BOS itself was written in MicroCobol and was very quick, even on a 2MHz Z80. The system was amazingly portable, each target system only requiring around 2KB of machine code to bootstrap BOS. Code was 100% cross compatible across hardware, something unheard of at the time.
Unfortunately, the marketing of the product was poor and it was swept away by the rise of the PC, which was a pity as some of its nicer features are only now being realised on, for example, Linux.

We need more info about this computer ! If you designed, used, or have more info about this system, please send us pictures or anything you might find useful.
Please consider donating your old computer / videogame system to or one of our partners from anywhere in the world (Europe, America, Asia, etc.).


I don''t have any space to keep anymore my Sord 223 mark III.

I put it in ebay...if you want to see the photos, there are 10.

Kind Regards

Sunday 9th February 2014
Xavier (Spain)

I have an M223 in my loft. Has it any value ?

Monday 9th January 2012
Peter Ingram (UK)

Dear Know1,
There is no such thing as built-in commands in Sord OS, so all commands are programs on the disk as PROG.SAV files. You might list the directory contents of a disk to a printer using device files (also present on the disk, with zero length) like this:
LIST/a = list ALL files (incl. hidden)
SOUTA/L/1 = send output to SOUTA in Mode 1
(SOUTA and SOUTB are serial ports;
you speciafy which one to receive output;
Mode 1 means: as line terminator;
/L means: this is the list output device, if
you omit the /L then the filename will be
interpreted as the file you wish to get the
information about.)

It greatly depends on the programs on your disks to decide about what more useful things could be done.
Further note: none of the programs have built-in help because of the small amout of disk space in those days.

Hope this helps a bit...

Monday 31st July 2006
Roelof Beverdam (Enschede)


NAME  M223 series
TYPE  Home Computer
YEAR  1979
KEYBOARD  QWERTY / AZERTY mechanical keyboard
15 function keys & numeric keypad
CPU  Zilog Z80 A
RAM  64 kb
VRAM  4 kb
ROM  512 bytes (for the loader), up to 8 kb
TEXT MODES  80 x 24
COLORS  Black & green (built-in monitor)
SOUND  Unknown
I/O PORTS  plug for an additional ROM
V24 / RS232c x 2 (from 110 to 9600 bauds)
M-223 : 3 x S100 connectors
BUILT IN MEDIA  From 1 to 4 x 5.25
OS  Sord DOS, CP/M, UCSD Pascal
POWER SUPPLY  Built-in Power Supply Unit
PERIPHERALS  - 2 more floppy-drives
- 10 Mb hard-disk
M-223 only :
- Graphic card for high resolution and 8 colors
- A/D and D/A convertor
PRICE  Unknown

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