A TRS-80 program in the sleeve of a vinyl record by the band Pinback

There are a few weeks, I was talking about the vinyl record by the band Pinback, Information Retrieved Pt. B. It contains a program encoded on the vinyl itself, for the TRS-80. And well Information Retrieved Pt. A is more or less in the same case.

Instead of repeating all the previous articles each time, I’ll refer you to the dedicated page, which explains what I do with vinyl records and lists all the pages containing programs, explanations, etc.


Actually, there is a difference on part A: there is a program and it is on a flyer placed in the record sleeve, it is not in the vinyl audio.

The sleeve

To retrieve the code, I cheated: I scanned the image and did a copy/paste with macOS. Even though part of it is unreadable, I got about 80% of the code. Then it took me a good ten minutes to correct and deduce the unreadable lines. It’s BASIC, so it’s still quite simple if you have some programming notions.

The first program

Once corrected, I launched it and had to make some other corrections. Strangely enough, there is a space between GO and TO in the code even though the command is GOTO (that blocked me a bit). Then there is a problem with the responses. The code seems to generate random values but it doesn’t work. I don’t know if it comes from the choice of the computer, an error, or something I’m doing wrong.

The second « program » is just a list of venues for the band’s various concerts in 2011, presented in a format similar to BASIC code, like the other side of the flyer.

Venues for concerts