Marcel van Kervinck

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Graham Banks
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Re: Marcel van Kervinck

Post by Graham Banks » Sat May 30, 2020 3:41 am

From another forum:
It is with deepest regrets that I announce the death on Tuesday 26th May 2020 of Marcel van Kervinck - the creator of the Gigatron TTL Computer.

Marcel passed peacefully following a long illness. First surgery and then immuno-therapy failed him. He gave up the struggle two days ago - aged in his early 50's.

To regular readers of the Gigatron forum, it was clear that in recent weeks he had increasing health problems, but none of us knew the full extent.

Marcel created the Gigatron in the Spring of 2017, based on his earlier idea to produce a VGA video generator from TTL counters, a RAM and a ROM. His progress and clever insights with the Gigatron architecture was fully documented in a series of posts to

Within a year he had created the prototype, a double sided pcb, a full kit of parts, and written all the low level and high level software.

The community embraced such an elegant and comprehensive design, and it was not long before there was an assembler, an emulator, Tiny BASIC, Wozmon, a virtual 6502 which can run Commodore floating point BASIC - and just recently a fully compiled, modern BASIC with advanced string handling and other essential features. One of the last projects was a fully operational "clone" of an Apple-1 running 6502 code on the Gigatron hardware.

Approximately 1000 kits have been sold to date, (Edit - the 1000th kit was sold today) and there is sufficient stock to last the next couple of months, after which no more will be produced. Marcel's project partner, Walter, will handle the final sales and shipping until the current stock is depleted.

The project has been open sourced, and the manual will appear online as a legacy for the wider retro-computing community.

The original breadboard prototype has been gifted to a computing museum in the Netherlands.
gbanksnz at

Gerd Isenberg
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Re: Marcel van Kervinck

Post by Gerd Isenberg » Sat May 30, 2020 9:31 am

flok wrote:
Fri May 29, 2020 4:11 pm

May 25, 2020 Marcel van Kervinck passed away.
Marcel was the developer of Rookie, MSCP and Floyd. From December 2012 until November 2014, he was a member of the board of the CSVN (Dutch computer chess association).
There will be a virtual funeral this saturday. Please send me an e-mail if you would like to attend
Rest in peace, Marcel. I still love your N-queens implementation, bit-twiddling and C obfuscation as its best.

Code: Select all

t(a,b,c){int d=0,e=a&~b&~c,f=1;if(a)for(f=0;e-=d,d=e&-e;f+=t(a-d,(b+d)*2,(
c+d)/2));return f;}main(q){scanf("%d",&q);printf("%d\n",t(~(~0<<q),0,0));}

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Full name: Rasmus Althoff

Re: Marcel van Kervinck

Post by Ras » Sat May 30, 2020 9:57 am

I'm shocked - rest in peace, Marcel. My condolences to the family.

His KPK bitbase code is part of my engine.
Rasmus Althoff

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Re: Marcel van Kervinck

Post by Rebel » Sat May 30, 2020 2:10 pm

Impressive Pink Floyd song choice at the funeral.

Rest in peace Marcel, it was good to know you.
90% of coding is debugging, the other 10% is writing bugs.

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Re: Marcel van Kervinck

Post by syzygy » Sat May 30, 2020 3:15 pm

This is very very sad news...

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Re: Marcel van Kervinck

Post by flok » Sat May 30, 2020 3:38 pm

Rebel wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 2:10 pm
Impressive Pink Floyd song choice at the funeral.

Rest in peace Marcel, it was good to know you.
I found it very impressive that his dad could talk. Micah / Embla / PuppetMaster / DeepBrutePos / Pos / Feeks

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Re: Marcel van Kervinck

Post by Ferdy » Sun May 31, 2020 3:20 am

Condolences to his family. Peace be with you, Marcel.

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Full name: Marcel Vanthoor

Re: Marcel van Kervinck

Post by mvanthoor » Mon Jun 01, 2020 1:47 am

I only knew about him after finding and implementing the carry rippler code to get all blocker permutations. Someone who can come up with a formula of 5 lines or so which replaces a 40 line function in my engine (and ve faster as well), must be a master mathematician.

It seems he wasn't even 50. Sad to read about his illness and to pass away at such an early age. Rest in peace.
Author of Rustic.
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Re: Marcel van Kervinck

Post by jefk » Mon Jun 08, 2020 7:36 pm

sad to hear he's gone (so soon,
approx 15 yrs younger than me).
Knew him via the (Dutch) CSVN, some 20 yrs ago or so he had given
me permission to use his Mscp(1.4); it's apparently still hosted here:
But not there for long anymore, i suspect (his program(s)
Rookie(C), Blik(C) and Floyd(C) are not logged into FICS
anymore..; i played numerous (engine)games against Rookie,
(with occasional chatting) from which games
we both updated our opening books.
He also had a linkedin profile (still online):
In his remembrance, here's a download link for an (open source) chess
gambit program which i made based on Mscp (now with Winb interface).

NB1 program is intended for *human* (intermediate) play,
engine is not so strong (approx 1700), but you will often get
some sharp gambits if you play this program, so be aware :)
(personally i use it sometimes as chess training program;
at IM level it's rather easy to beat, but at approx 2000 level
or so (below master) the gambits may be rather tricky).
NB2 download with rightclick, and then save as, etc
to avoid annoying popups (and/or other downloads)
Unzip, and read the READM-etc.txt file. Start program
with doubleclick the START-djeng.bat file; have fun !
(also Mscp1.7 source included, made by someone else:

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Re: Marcel van Kervinck

Post by diep » Tue Oct 20, 2020 3:44 pm

Just learnt Marcel van Kervinck passed away 25th of may 2020 at age 48.

Very sad to hear!

Still talked to him end March 2020.

Trying to find correspndence address of his family.
if someone knows diep @ xs4all . nl is still mine.

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