home :: mark :: dev :: play
I was fascinated with the sound and the PC speaker. It all started because
I found a virus on one of the PCs in the computer lab at university. Whenever
the computer was rebooted it played a sample of an advert for some sort of
air freshener product (called, "magic mushroom", really). So since I knew
it could be done, I researched into how to make what is a sample with 256
levels of volume information (8 bit) into something that could be put through
the speaker (1 bit).
On 28th March 1990 Play was born. The first version just loaded a sample at a fixed
frequency and played it through the speaker. It had to be hand crafted
assembly code since my development machine was only a 10MHz 286. Version
1.0 was born, with only 440 lines of code, and a 1492 byte executable.
Play got a graphical user interface for DOS by April 1990, using
libraries all coded in assembler. Later that month I worked on circuits
that could do sampling through a A/D connected to the parallel port.
Play was given rave reviews by several UK magazines in 1991-2 and
was included on magazine cover disks. In 1991, Play was distributed
with the Activision game "Leather Goddesses of Phobos II".
Play v4.10 (75k) [Note: this program does not work inside Windows]
- Computer Shopper Article, November 1991
99 percent of Public Domain and Shareware programs are utter rubbish.
Netherless, the search for the 'free lunch' sometimes turns up some
absolute gems .. I have a feeling we'll be seeing more of Mark J Cox -
he's got talent
- Computer Shopper Article, April 1992
Play is a much more elaborate program for playing and editing music, Not
only can you play them, you can select sections of the waveform to edit -
shifting frequency, cutting and pasting sections, creating repeating loops
and lots more
- Infocom's Leather Goddess II brocure
We have bundled a couple of sound utilities with the game .. courtesy of
Mark J. Cox, a computer whiz from England
April 1991 saw the release of version 4.10, the last public version of Play.
A friend took over development and added numerous new fetures, but the
version was never released (see screenshot below)
Play 2.14 was the first to have a graphical interface, although
it was pretty basic|
By Play 3.50 the interface design had become stable|
Play 4.10b was the last public version|
Play 4.32 was never released but included
multiple input and output support including
stereo, new graphical file chooser, and a lot more
Created: 01 Jan 2003