Chris Ward's 6502 Computer
Created by Chris Ward
These pages describe a simple home-made computer based on the 8-bit 6502 microprocessor. The project was intended to fill the summer holiday between the end of my BSc and the start of my MSc, but it's still keeping me occupied over a year since I started.
I got the crazy idea of designing and building a computer from scratch after taking a course entitled 'Low Level Architecture and Programming' at UEA while I was studying, funnily enough, for a BSc in Chemistry. Once you know about address and data lines, address decoding, R/W and CS signals, and a bit of discrete logic, you begin to think that maybe computers aren't all that complicated after all.
And so, after a quick flick through the Maplin catalogue, I was convinced (falsely, as I later discovered) that a basic computer would be quite simple and cheap to make. The idea of switching on a computer and seeing the message 'Chris-64 Mk1 - Ready' (or something like that) is quite exciting. This would be a completely unique and personalised computer.
If you're also interested in this sort of project, then hopefully this site should save you a certain amount of time and money. You can build a copy of my computer from the schematics, or just use some of the ideas and techniques for your own design.