Cool stuff. Anyone wanting to do something with BASIC should look into FreeBASIC: a cross-platform, fast, modernized BASIC. It also has a QuickBASIC mode for compatibility with some legacy apps.
I used FreeBASIC to do a quick app in the past. Between the install and manual, it took almost no effort to get right to coding a solution that worked on first try. That because BASIC is pretty close to executable pseudocode. My favorite thing about it.
This made me smile. At some point in the recent past I read about someone who had the job of taking some ancient executables written for MS-DOS and writing a web api wrapper for them that would accept an input, run the exe in dos emulation and return the output. This was because the programs themselves still worked but nobody had the original source and it was all for converting ancient documents in obscure formats to something that could be read by a modern computer (or another DOS based file convertor.)
I worked a job where I had to get a 1975-era Fortran contour-map library working inside a 64-bit .NET GUI app. My employer had bought the company which made the library in the 90s, and sat on it until they decided it was time to add it to their newest product. Luckily for me, it had a C interface API for the PDP11, so I hacked up the interface and just pretended to be a really futuristic plotter on a really fast PDP11.
All modern CPUs are just exactly that: incredibly fast PDP11s :)
I keep thinking about that article from back in April…