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SBTCVM is a virtual machine implementation of a balanced ternary (base 3) computer. Features several compiled languages for ternary software development. [alpha]
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Simple Balanced Ternary Computer Virtual Machine


Need Help? See our Getting started guide

SBTCVM Project blog

What is SBTCVM?

Ever wonder what computers other than the boring-old binary would be like? Well, look no further! SBTCVM, a python-written VM, simulates the little-known base number called Balanced Ternary!

What is balanced ternary? well, it has "0" and "+1", just like binary, but added into the mix is a "-1"! Yes, this means EVERY number is signed.

Intrigued? Well, as SBTCVM is Free & Open Source Software, and comes with a ready-to-use set of compilers and development tools, Getting started with balanced ternary with SBTCVM, should prove a fun challenge!


  • bundled ternary software. including demos, games and utilities.
  • 4 channel sound chip
  • 6.5Khz, 9-trit CPU
  • 39.388 KiloNonets of system RAM
  • pygame frontend features color graphics.
  • multiple specialized programming languages with integrated compilers. (SSTNPL, SBTCVM assembly)
  • Suite of development tools and utilities.
  • cross-platform interactive shell and build system. (


Pygame 2.7 OR 3.

Sound (powered by FSSynthlib): pygame

Curses VM: curses

Pygame VM: pygame (needs truetype font and PNG support!)

Code Licensing

SBTCVM gen2-9 ships with, a general-use waveform synthesis library from the FSSS synthesizer suite. You can find its readme in the textdocs directory.

Copyright (c) 2016-2019 Thomas Leathers and Contributors

SBTCVM Gen2 9-trit is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

SBTCVM Gen2 9-trit is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with SBTCVM Gen2 9-trit. If not, see

licensing For images and media below

all images and other media content, unless otherwise noted, are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit or send a letter to Creative Commons, PO Box 1866, Mountain View, CA 94042, USA.

Image and other media content created by, (unless otherwise noted below) Thomas Leathers.

SBTCVM's Stylized text logo and SBTCVM's 3 eyed, 3 eared mascot were created by Thomas Leathers. Copyright (c) 2018 Thomas Leathers and Contributors.

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