Welcome to my journey with the Sharp PC-1401 and PC-1403 pocket computers. This section offers documentation, resources, programming insights, and more. You'll also find information about my Arduino-driven 11-pin interface adapter and other projects.

In 2022, I found this Sharp PC-1401 pocket computer on Facebook Marketplace. To pique my interest, a piece of vintage technology has to meet some specific criteria:

  1. Nostalgic Appeal: It should be an item I would have yearned to own during its prime. Rewind to 1983, and my 6 year old self would have been enthralled by programming this tiny computer. I could see myself carrying it everywhere and coding BASIC programs whenever I had a free moment.
  2. Programmability & Hackability: Not only should a vintage computer be programmable, but it must be somewhat "hackable". The PC-1401, while programmed primarily in BASIC, was no mere toy. Designed for genuine computing tasks, it even had an edge for the tech-savvy: the undocumented BASIC commands PEEK, POKE, and CALL allows users to dip into machine code programming.
  3. Modern Compatibility: Being able to connect with newer systems is a requirement. The 11-pin connector of the PC-1401, originally intended for printers and cassette recorders, can be repurposed with the help of an Arduino into facilitating connection to modern PCs.

After confirming it met my criteria, I acquired the PC-1401 and quickly delved into understanding its internals, especially how to adapt the 11-pin connector for PC connectivity.

A few months down the line, I chanced upon an eBay listing for a PC-1403, in great condition with its original box and manual, and at a good price. I was drawn to it not only for its better display and double the memory but also because its 11-pin connector supported a disk drive interface. This feature promises more development possibilities.