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ANTIC The Atari 8-bit Podcast


hosts: Randy Kindig, Kay Savetz, Brad Arnold
email: antic@ataripodcast.com
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Aug 28, 2021

Atari at the Science Fair: Mark Knutsen, Star Cluster
 
This is the third in a series of interviews called "Atari at the Science Fair" where I talk with people who used Atari 8-bit computers to create projects and enter them in science fairs.

Today's interview is with Mark Knutsen, who wrote a star cluster simulation in the Forth programming language for his high school science fair. I found this blurb in the July 1986 edition of the Jersey Atari Computer Group newsletter:

"June meeting highlights ... Mark Knutsen showed us his Star Cluster program in Forth that won a science fair prize for him. Mark’s program demonstrates the interaction of four stars in two planes. Mark also discussed Forth in general."

This interview took place on August 21, 2021. If you'd like to see our talking heads — and the visuals of his program running — a video version of this interview is available at YouTube and Internet Archive. Mark has shared his program and the source code: those links are in the show notes.

This interview at YouTube

Download Mark's Star Cluster program

Star Cluster blurb in JACE newsletter July 1986

ValFORTH Documentation

Computer Recreations - Star Clusters column in Scientific American: At JSTOR and At Internet Archive