Is it possible to develop a small OS/script for the Raspberry Pi that can boot from a floppy disk? If so what knowledge and tools would be needed to accomplish this?
i.e. No sd card, just a floppy disk drive connected via USB.
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There are really two parts to this question. Can you boot from floppy, and can you put an OS on a floppy.
As to whether you can put an OS on a floppy, yes of course you can. Quite apart from the good old days of MS-DOS 3.1, CP/M, et al, I have written small OS that will run from a floppy, it isn't difficult.
As an intellectual exercise or learning process, go ahead. You only need your favourite compiler.
As to whether you can boot from floppy - probably. I have connected a 5.25" floppy to a Pi400 via USB. Not to boot from, just to read, so go for it.