TRS-80 Bluetooth (2007)

I turn a TRS-80 into a networked terminal as a prank

Solo work

I decided to play a prank on a new employee starting today. When he arrived, there was no fancy laptop or desktop machine sitting on his desk… only a TRS-80 Model 100 laptop.

The TRS-80 can run on batteries (this was a major selling point when it was released), but its designers forgot to add wireless capabilities.

I have corrected this shocking oversight by soldering a BlueSMIRF module available from Sparkfun Electronics ( directly to the HD-6502 UART on the motherboard.

My MacBook pairs with the Bluetooth module and exposes its remote TTL level UART as a device file. I use screen to open this device file, and exec “telnet” to my host of choice.

When Sam walked in this morning, I handed him his TRS-80 laptop with a working login screen to the Linux box… but the TRS-80 was completely untethered!

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