Digirule 2, 2A and 2U

The Digirule 2 is essentially an 8-bit programmable binary computer of the 1970’s – built into a 20cm ruler.

Programming the Digirule 2U

There are currently three different versions of the Digirule 2. More information on each version can be found in the links below:

Tindie

When I have stock, you can purchase a Digirule 2 from my Tindie store. Click on the Tindie image below to be taken to my store:

I sell on Tindie

Kickstarter

The Digirule 2 was successfully funded on Kickstarter on the 28th of June 2018 where 487 backers pledged $22,097AUD. Kickstarter link HERE.
The Digirule 2A was successfully funded on Kickstarter on the 29th of May 2019 (which only ran for 48 hours) where 149 backers pledged $6,149AUD. Kickstarter link HERE.
The Digirule 2U was successfully funded on Kickstarter on the 17th of September 2020 where 629 backers pledged $38,849AUD. Kickstarter link HERE.


Digirule 2

The Digirule 2 is essentially an 8-bit binary computer of the 1970’s, built into a 20cm ruler. It features an 8-bit address bus, 8-bit data bus, data input buttons and 33 instructions for you to code your own programs.

Digirule 2 Features (Front)
Digirule 2 Features (Rear)

Digirule 2 – Instruction Set

With an instruction set consisting of 33 instructions – the Digirule 2 can be programmed to perform all sorts of tasks, including fun games such as the classic ‘kill-the-bit’ game for the Altair 8800 or perhaps a Knightrider LED scanner, binary counter or a simple game of two player pong!

An excel spreadsheet allows you to easily write your code in mnemonic form – it will then automatically convert it into binary machine code for you to enter into the Digirule 2:

Digirule 2 Excel Coder

Digirule 2 – Features

  • Dimensions 209mm x 40mm x 1.6mm
  • 33 Instructions
  • Open Source Hardware and Software
  • Powered by an 8-bit Microchip PIC18F43K20 Microcontroller
  • 256 Byte program memory space
  • 8-bit data bus
  • 8-bit address bus
  • Eight blocks of 256 Byte flash memory to store your programs
  • Eight address LED’s
  • Eight Data LED’s
  • Eight Data input buttons

Digirule 2 – Videos


Digirule 2 Preview


Getting Started With the Digirule 2

Digirule 2 Downloads

The following ZIP file contains the Bill of Materials, schematic, source code, PCB layout and Gerber files, User Manual, firmware and Excel Code maker for both the Digirule 2 and Digirule 2A:

Digirule 2 and 2A Files (1881 downloads)

Digirule 2A

The Digirule 2A is essentially an 8-bit binary computer of the 1970’s, built into a 20cm PCB ruler. It features an 8-bit address bus, 8-bit data bus, eight data input buttons and 35 instructions for you to code your own programs. You will notice the Digirule 2A is virtually identical to the Digirule 2. The only differences being the extra two instructions printed on the rear of the device and the RUN/STOP LED’s being positioned below the switch in the 2A version. The major difference between the Digirule 2 and the Digirule 2A is in the firmware. The updated firmware has been re-written from scratch in C instead of Basic – by Brent Hauser (who is now the second member of the Digirule 2 team!).

 

Digirule 2A Features (Front)

Digirule 2A – Instruction Set

With an instruction set consisting of 35 instructions – the Digirule 2A can be programmed to perform all sorts of tasks, including fun games such as ‘kill-the-bit’ which was made famous on the Altair 8800 or perhaps a Knightrider LED scanner, binary counter or binary calculator.

An Excel spreadsheet allows you to easily write your code in mnemonic form – it will then automatically convert it into binary machine code for you to enter into the Digirule 2A:


Digirule 2A Excel Coder

Digirule 2A – Features

  • Dimensions 209mm x 40mm x 1.6mm
  • 35 Instructions
  • Open Source Hardware and Software
  • Powered by an 8-bit Microchip PIC18F45K20 Microcontroller
  • 256 Byte program memory space (four bytes are reserved)
  • 8-bit data bus
  • 8-bit address bus
  • Eight blocks of 256 Byte flash memory to save your programs
  • Eight address LED’s
  • Eight Data LED’s
  • Eight Data input buttons
  • CR2032 battery is not included due to shipping restrictions

Digirule 2A – Videos

Kit soldering instructional video. This video will give those who have bought the Digirule 2A (or 1A) kit a few tips on how to solder their kit together:

Digirule 2A Kit Soldering Tutorial

Digirule 2A – Downloads

The download below features the Digirule 2 and 2A sourcecode, schematic, PCB design, gerber, user manual and excel spreadsheet coder and also the soldering kit instructions. A big thank you to Brent Hauser for his updated Digirule 2A firmware!

Digirule 2 and 2A Files (1881 downloads)

Digirule 2U

The Digirule 2U is basically an 8-bit programmable computer from the 1970’s, built into a 20cm Ruler. You can program binary code directly into the Digirule 2U using the push buttons and LED’s or you can write programs in assembly language on your computer then download them to the Digirule 2U via USB.

Programming the Digirule 2U

The Digirule 2U is the most feature-rich version of the Digirule to date. With 54 instructions, USB support, built-in serial debug monitor, full-featured assembler, 8-bit address bus, 8-bit data bus, eight 256-byte permanent memory slots and loads more.

With the Digirule 2U – You can discover the fascinating world of programming a computer in the actual language that the computer understands – binary!

You can code your own LED games, perform calculations, send and receive data to/from a computer or even another Digirule 2U. Each Digirule 2U comes pre-loaded with eight programs including ‘Hello World’, ‘Mastermind’ and ‘Prime Number Calculator’. The Digirule 2U features eight permanent memory locations where you can store your own awesome programs.

Digirule 2U – Features

Digirule 2U – Hardware

All the hardware that makes up this awesome 8-bit computer is built into the Digirule 2U PCB.

Digirule 2U Hardware

 

Digirule 2U – Instruction Set

With an instruction set consisting of 54 instructions – you can write some awesome programs!


Digirule 2U Instruction Set

Digirule 2U – Debug Monitor

A feature-rich serial debug monitor is built into the Digirule 2U firmware. Simply plug the Digirule 2U into your USB port, load up your favourite serial terminal and start hacking into your Digirule 2U programs with your computer keyboard!


Digirule 2U Debug Monitor

Digirule 2U – Assembler

Write your Digirule 2U programs in assembly language then assemble them using the powerful Digirule 2U assembler!


Digirule 2U Assembler

Digirule 2U – USB Firmware Updater

The Digirule 2U has a built-in firmware updater allowing you to update the firmware without any extra hardware or programmer!


Digirule 2U USB Firmware Updater

Digirule 2U – Software Tools

The Digirule 2U features a set of command line tools including the Digirule 2U assembler and firmware updater, for macOS, Windows and Linux operating systems.


Digirule 2U Software Tools

Digirule 2U – Videos


Digirule 2U Advertisement (Are you keeping up with the Digirule?)


Digirule 2U Walkthrough

Digirule 2U – Team

The Digirule 2U hardware was designed by Bradley Slattery (bradsprojects) and Brent Hauser (kd0gls). The Digirule 2U firmware and software tools including adr2 assembler, udr2 firmware updater and dldr2 file downloader were all developed by kd0gls. The sample programs that are built-in to the Digirule 2U were developed by kd0gls and Olivier Lecluse.

We were both helped out greatly by Olivier Lecluse via the Digirule 2U Discord server. Olivier has made all sorts of great sample programs for use on the Digirule 2U as well as a bunch of cool software tools that have been made for the Digirule 2U.

Digirule 2U – Third Party Tools

The Digirule 2 community has been around for a couple of years now and there have been some awesome third party tools developed for the Digirule 2 platform.

Olivier and Thomas Lecluse have developed an amazing GUI based Digirule 2 development environment written in Python named DigiQt.

Athanasios Anastasiou has come up with a great set of Digirule 2 development tools written in Python named dgtools.

Luke Drumm has made a fantastic online assembler and basic interpreter for the Digirule 2U named digirulenotes.

Digirule 2U – Downloads

You can find downloads for the Digirule 2U including user manual, schematic, sourcecode, PCB design files, Bill of Materials, firmware and more at the Digirule 2U GitHub Repo HERE.

You can check out the online version of the Digirule 2U User Manuals in the links below:


Links

The Digirule 2 line of programmable computers has seen a nice little community create their own assemblers, compilers and programs for the Digirule 2, 2A and 2U.

Olivier Lecluse and his son Thomas created a feature-rich Digirule 2, 2A and 2U simulator called ‘DigiQt’. It is with great sadness that I mention that Olivier passed away just after he released DigiQt. Olivier was a very active member of the Digirule 2 community and his presence will be sorely missed. You can find DigiQt HERE.

Luke Drumm has made a fantastic Digirule 2/2A Assembler and can be found HERE.

Luke has also made a Basic Compiler which can be found HERE.

User Uploads

If you’ve made a program that you’d like to share with others, feel free to upload it using the form below:

Upload files



You can browse the user upload directory by clicking HERE.