Casey Bralla on 12 Mar 2014 16:53:37 -0700

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[PLUG] Electronic Circuit CAD

To continue with our nostalgia tour (BTW, "Do you remember the reminiscing we 
used to do back when we were kids?  We had really good nostalgia back in those 
days!"), I'm starting to build a microcomputer with my all-time favorite CPU, 
the 6502.  

(I had a Synertek Sym that I used for my senior engineering project in 1979. I 
later souped it up to 32K RAM and 2 - count 'em - 2 single-sided, single-sided 
floppies, with a grand total of 70 KBytes of storage on line.  I was so cool, 
even my poops didn't stink! <grin>)

These 6502 systems are pretty simple, but I'd really like to do it slow and 
carefully, which means I've got to do the circuit design in CAD.  I therefore 
am experimenting with various CAD programs.

So far, I've played with KiCAD a little, including trying some of the on-line 
tutorials.  I've also got GEDA loaded, but not tried, and a free (but not open 
source) version of ExpressPCB.  

One feature I'm missing in KiCAD (or it might be there, and I just don't know 
how to do it) is to be able to move things around on the my schematic drawing 
and have all the wires automatically move to stay connected.  For example, say 
I put a capacitor in one corner, but then realize I have to move it to the 
right by 2" to make room for some other component.  In KiCAD, the capacitor 
moves, but the wires connecting it stay put!  I hope I'm doing something 
wrong, because it seems pretty worthless without this feature.

I plan to wire-wrap this puppy, so I won't need PCB designs.  Basically, I 
just need a schematic that closely matches the physical layout, and a list of 
point-to-point connections to wire wrap.

What do y'all use for circuit design?

Casey Bralla

Chief Nerd in Residence
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