Alarm Clock Radio

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Alarm Clock Radio is a modified form of Brainfuck, designed to be stripped to the minimal instruction set needed to reproduce Brainfuck's functionality, except with a sleep instruction added.

Alarm Clock Radio was created by User:Deschutron one day because he couldn't find a variant of Brainfuck that has a minimal instruction set when the memory space wraps around.

One of the key changes in Alarm Clock Radio is the removal of the '<' and '-' instructions, since their effects can be produced by the correct number of '>' or '+' commands. The result creates a similarity with common alarm clock radios, that often have increment buttons for their minutes and hours settings, but no corresponding decrement buttons. This similarity is responsible for the name of this language.

The instructions are summarised as follows:

>  HR     increments the memory pointer
+  MIN    increments the current memory cell
[  LOOP   jumps past the matching ] if the cell under the pointer is 0 
]  RETZ   jumps back to the matching [ if the cell under the pointer is nonzero 
,  READ   reads a byte into the current memory cell
.  WRITE  writes the byte that is in the current memory cell
@  SNOOZE sleeps for the number of seconds in the current memory cell
}  PAD    sets the memory size to the inclusive distance between the two furthest non-zero cells,
          plus PADSIZE cells.

where PADSIZE is a number of memory cells.

The PAD instruction

The PAD '}' instruction is optional, and is included for when true Turing completeness is required. PAD allows the effective memory space to be unbounded and be cyclical.

PAD may be used both to allocate and free memory.

Recommended memory dimensions

For the sake of consistency in implementations, the following recommendations are made:

  1. The recommended initial memory size with the PAD instruction is 60 cells.
  2. The recommended initial memory size without PAD is 30000 cells, as in the original Brainfuck compiler.
  3. The recommended value for PADSIZE is 60 cells.
  4. The recommended memory cell range is 0-255, using 8 bits (1 byte)

Other suggested memory cell sizes are:

  1. {0, 1}, i.e. one bit per cell - for true minimalism, similar to Smallfuck.
  2. 0-59, for closer similarity with alarm clock radios.

Making an alarm clock

Theoretically, it is possible to write an alarm clock in Alarm Clock Radio.

It is, however, probably not possible to write an alarm clock radio in Alarm Clock Radio, because setting the alarm clock, and receiving the audio data to "play" would require two input channels.

See also

  • Brainfuck, the one that started it all...
  • Smallfuck, a form of Brainfuck with a reduced instruction set that is Turing complete