MAR - APR '94 VOL IS - 2

TORONTO TIHEX-SINCLAIR USERS CLUB

MAR - APR '94 VOL 12-2

S INCH. INK IS A PUBLICATION OF THE TORONTO T I MEX -SINCLAIR USERS CLUB AND IS ISSUED 6 TIMES A YEAR. CLUB MEMBERS RECEIVE FREE COPIES AS PART OF THE 920.00 ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP FEE.

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PLEASE CREDIT THIS PUBLICATION AND THE AUTHOR IF YOU COPY MATERIAL.

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THE QL SJG MILL MEET AT 3B6 ONEIDA DRIVE, BURLINGTON, ONT. 7PM START. NEXT MEETING TO BE ANNOUNCED.

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SEND CORRESPONDANCE TOt

SINC-LINK EDITOR, TORONTO TIMEX-SINCLAIR USERS CLUB, 14 RICHOME COURT, ONTARIO, CANADA M1K 2Y1.

TORONTO TIHEX-SINCLfllR

EXECUTIVE OFFICERS:

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{ Out-of-town members )

USERS CLUB

( AREA CODE 416) RENE BRUNEAU (331-9749) BILL LAWSON ( 444-8772 ) GEORGE CHAMBERS ( 791-7999 ) LOU LAFERRIERE ( 820-3729 )

HUGH HOWIE ( 634-4929 ) NOTE WW AREA G0OE 905

JEFF TAYLOR ( 244-8963 )

GEORGE CHAMBERS. 14 RICHOME COURT.

SCARBOROUGH. ONTARIO NIK 2Y1

( 416-791-7999 )

TORONTO TIMEX-SINCLAIR USERS CLUB

2

SINC-LINK

EDT TORT ftf ,

APRIL'S SHOWERS '94

Don't shoot the editor! It's ty fault that this issue is late. I've been working on a fey things and let too much stuff slip by.

Host of the information for this issue has been written or provided by Hugh Howie, our QL Librarian and QL Liaison.

Where have all the users gone?

In the last year we have seen a draiatic drop in the ZX81 and 2068 club participation. Our book libraries have not been active for several years, and the tape and disk libraries, with the exception of the QL libraries run by Hugh Howie, have also become inactive.

I think that, in lost cases, users of the ZX81 and 2068, have lade the juip to other systeis with their increased ■eiory, video and availability of hardware and software at reasonable prices. Indeed, you can now find complete systeis, although used, at prices that first attracted us to the Sinclair computers. Hany users have simply packed up their old systems and stored or given them away. Our loss but understandable, considering that both the ZX81 and 2068 have been out of production for about 10 years.

This scenario does not apply as such to the QL earket. There is still considerable activity both in Europe and in North America for the QL. Witness the development of a new Sold Card and the occasion of another QL computer fest in Newport as reported in this issue.

Where do ve go from h*re?

The strength and vitality of a club can be judged by the active participation of members in the club and this can be reflected in the newsletter. That being the case, we as a club need a booster shot. Summer is just around the corner and is traditionally the hardest time to get material for the newsletter. As can be seen, there is lots of QL material and Hugh has indicated that he has barely scraped the barrel. Maybe we should change the name from SINC-LINK to SINfl-UNK. Think about it.

INDEX VOLUME 12-2 page 2 - Club Stuff page 3 - This Page page 4 - QLips page 5 - QLerk page 7 - ZX81 RESOURCES page 10 - QL JOTS and TITTLES page 12 - THE RELEASE OF XCHANGE page 15 - MENS & QL LIBRARY ADDITIONS page 18 - QIHDEX

'Don't tell me ... it's a light pen. "

Rene Bruneau President

SINC-LINK

O L I P S.

by Ingh Bowie

I like to think I am no different from most other QL users, or at least, not too different, and that therefore I have problems similar to others. Anyway, here is ray solution to one of my problems.

How I have often wished I could get hard copy of something on screen, a Screen Dump, and was unable to do so, yet there is a little known procedure in the Trump Card and Gold Card manual to do just that, and on this page you see an example. OK OK so I had to do a double pass of the paper in the printer, but at least you can see what I dooed.

The procedure is towards the end of the Trump or Gold Card manual, and just before the TK2 section gets going. It is available even before the TK2 is activated. There is also a section giving you "screen dump formats" for a number of different printers.

Oh dear, I almost forgot to tell you what the darned thing is it is so easy to use. Just type 4>dp_jL<Ly q and from then on, whenever you press the "ALT & q" you will send a screen display to the printer. (Put it in all your BOOT files, just after TK2_EXT, then it's always ready for use) There are some occasions when such is not the case such as when the QL is expecting input from another source etc. Let's try it - Type in:~ AdpJ*,Q*y then press ALT S q, .

Cursor maw: <t> <l> <f> <+> pta <SHFT> or <ALT) keys 20 Prestige 12 SW Delete tat <CTRD plus « cursor am key combuwtton

0 Norwrt Help; <F1) Window <F2> frnwmtte <F3> Typeface <F4) Ruler <FS) fR^O [Linesp^M] [LtfUiorail [.IfeteM [20 20 180} ]

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1 0 LIPS !

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\ I I ike to think 1 a no different fret nst other QL users, or at least, j

I not too different, and that therefore I have problems si»i (or to others.

] flnyuay, here is ay solution to one of ay probleis.

! Hou I have often wished I could get hard copy of something on screen, a j

S Screen Omp, and uas unable to do so, yet there is a ( ittle known procedure \

j in the Trap Cord and Gold Card wnual to to just that, and on this page j

| you see an exaple. OK OK so I had to do a double pass of the paper in the j

1 printer, but at least uou can see uhat I dooed. \

\ \

| The procedure is touards the end of the Tn^p or Gold Card ianual, and just j

| before the TK2 section gets going. II is avai lable even before the TK2 is j

j activated. There is also a section giving uou "screen dup fonats" for a \

\ nwber of d if ferent pr inters . I

\ \

\ feti sftJuflMW jjjorte M Line; 0 More J Paoe; 1 : j ]

Now that was easy was it not? Why not look it up and try it out? You will find many uses for it, just as I did here in this little bit of natter.

As I said some time ago, most of us don't know what there is lying around inside this little black beast, and it only takes a few moments to look at the manual to find out. Sorry, I forgot that most of us don't read the manuals - we are far too smart to need them.

940114

4

SINC-LINK

QLerk QLerk QLerk QLerk QLerk

k MSU1M I HOC III prec rat bf UU CA1U - loektc it »v I«*k Iwii

Page 1

The heading may make you think you are listening to a flock of ducks on the local millpond. or a skein of geese on their annual migratory pilgrimage flying high overhead. But really "QLerk" is the name of a program by the renowned New Hampshire programmer, Bill Gable.

Bill has spent a lot of time, a lot of work, on this program, and he has tested it in various businesses in his area. The result is a program that will keep your business records in order, or even just your household finances in order. The only limitation on the uses of this program are what the user places on it himself.

I was lucky in being able to look at version 2.1, but now I have version 3.0, and the improvement is significant. I will not mention the previous version again, as that would serve no useful purpose, and I only mention 2.1 to show that Bill is in a constant phase of updating and improving the system, and that is what it is - it is a system to keep your records up to date.

This would be a good time to mention that the program is vast. It is very complex, very comprehensive. It is going to take the user some time to get to know the ins and outs of it. It is not for the faint hearted, but once you have seen what it can do - you will be impressed.

This is an Archive program, Archive being provided on the program disk, but can also be run using your own Archive. It requires that you have extra memory, a minimum of 512K extra memory would be required. QLerk will run on a 7.5MHz QL, but slowly. The Trump Card much better, the Gold Card being best of all because of its extra speed of operation.

Disk drives are essential , MDV could not possibly hold everything. QLerk will run from two 720 disks. Or, if you have HD or ED drives or a hard drive, it could all be run from the one disk. The options are there for your own configuration.

To start with, there is an excellent manual which contains a wonderful demo

taking you through the example setup on the disk, one keypress at a time.

The demo starts off by telling you how to make your first backup of the program disk, and takes you through each and every step to get the demo up and running. You are shown how to use the Menus. How to check what payables are in the system, and how to make payments. How to handle receivables, how to write a cheque, make purchase orders, invoices, get various reports from the system.

Once you have run the demo a couple of times, you will have an excellent idea of how the whole system operates.

The Manual is easy to read and follow. It describes the various Program Modules and what each contains and does.

The whole is menu driven and there are about a dozen and a half of them. Each menu contains about 10 - 12 options, it varies, and each option has its own set of options.

Here is what the Main Menu looks like:-

lie to* uork on rare* (payables jpurchew ordsri^apnts)

Receivable wee., uork on revenues (peaiv*lfs,iflwia5,inajie) I bank/t Inventory nxte... uork on Inventory Load Ktiule...... report Mdule, odaress Mdule, sustei Mdule

•oNthty to o/oup. bring earthly Postered) record* to group for inspect

Group...... edit <vtev,d»ge> ,ierge into tatn,iqfce neu group

fain database.... edit (view only), bring records to group to uork on

Support file edit (viev,cnanQjefadd) od£res5,cate9ory,itfii^ity,user

BaotyVetaster., backup data t optionly purge dated records to wWy f

Directory. directory a device with copy and delete options

Other print lobet,copy files hoie,heip info,neu user/escreen

Quit quit QLERK with option to hott flRMUE foL;

Use key tVw or H or Of to choose and <EKTER> to accept

SINC-LINK

5

QLerk QLerk QLerk QLerk QLerk

A NSinSfl f UUKUl pmrm hj BIU C41U - ImM at »r lack loeit

Now to keep track of all those Menus, could be a formidable task, but there is a complete page allocated to each menu. That page starts off with a screen dump of what the menu looks like, just as I did above, and there is an explanation under the dump, telling you what occurs there. This Screen dump method of displaying the menus, means that vou can refer to the manual for a particular menu, and see what it does for you. Thus helping you decide whether to go back or forward to complete a task.

The facility on each menu can be selected in a number of ways . You could use the up/down arrow and ENTER, or you could select by the key letter of the facility, or, if you can remember the number of the facility required, you can make the selection bv number!

Should you at any time get out of QLerk by pressing ESC by mistake, just type 'm' and you will be back into the Main Menu, bo all is not lost.

The system is completely inter-active, in that an entry made in one mode, is transferred to all other modes where it is required, so that if a payment is made by cheque, the money is removed from the bank account, the account is reduced accordingly. Where the money went and where it came from, is all recorded automatically. One aspect that Bill mentions in his manual, will show just how interactive the system is. If you were to pay an account by VISA, the account would be paid, and the system would make out a new account showing that you owed VISA that amount*

The system can handle up to five cheque writing accounts at the same time. Plus two or three cash registers*

The cheque is filled out by the printer, and an address label printed ready to be pasted to the envelope. Everything is optional to your own requirements.

Payables, Receivables, Purchase orders. Cheques, Invoices, are all available. Inventory control, Bank Accounts, Cash Registers, Taxes, Duties, Deductions, Cyclical payments / receivables are all

taken care of.

You want a hard copy of some aspect of the business? By date? By occurrence? Frequency? How often has someone done business with you this last few weeks? months? You name it, and you will probably find the information is in there somewhere, all you have to do is dig it out, and with those easy-to-use menus, it is not so difficult.

There is a complete Inventory system so that you keep track of everything in stock. Does its own value evaluation for you. Enter Item, Price, and Number, and everything is taken care of.

No matter what you do, it is almost impossible to make an error. For example, when you make some entries, you are asked if you wish the entries to be merged, and you must answer with Y or N, thus you always have the opportunity to make corrections BEFORE the documents are altered or changed.

If you have any questions to ask about this program, why not write to Bill, after all he can answer much better than I can, and he is always willing to help.

His address ia:-

Bill Cable

Wood and Wind Computing RR 3. Box 92 Cornish, NH 03745. USA Phone (603) 675-2218

"It's here at last! The triple-side, double-density diskette.

SINC-LINK

ZX8 1 RESOURCES

A Tethered Robot

This project was found in the Noveiber and Deceiber 1986 issues of SINCLAIR USER and is suitable for both the 2068 and the ZX81. The original article was written by Rupert Goodwins and his design was based on a siiple plat fora with two powered wheels and a caster, you could easily substitute a cheap plastic iotorized toy (one that is powered by an attached cable and handset). Here one iotor drives the rear wheels and the other totor turns the front tires.

The project consists of two circuits built up on VEROboard. The first circuit and board layout is for a siiple Input/Output board that plugs into the back of the computer. If you already have an I/O board, you don't need to construct this interface. The second circuit and board layout is for a flotor board which provides the switching logic to control the direction that the iotors will turn (the layouts are done on graph paper that has the saie pitch as the holes in the VEROboard). A ribbon cable between the interface and iotor board carries the control signals and power to the iotors. Note that the interface and iotor boards will not control the speed of the iotors, just the direction.

Construction is started by cutting the VEROboard to size (25 x 36 holes and 37 x 36 holes). IMPORTANT NOTE; the board layouts show the bottoi or copper side of the VEROboard. That leans that the transistors and ICs are being viewed froa the bottoi! Locate and cut the traces larked by an x on the layouts. A perianent larker lakes the job easier to catch listakes before you cut. Insert all of the juipers before you load the components, again making sure that you have the right holes. Use sockets for the ICs and be careful not to overheat the diodes and transistors when you solder thei in. Check both boards for shorts or lisplaced bits.

Before you insert the ICs, plug in the interface board and turn the coiputer on. If the coiputer does not coie up, power off and check for shorts or lisrouting on the lines and leads coming from the edge connector. If everything is ok, insert the ICs and test again.

Connect the two boards together with the ribbon cable, hook up the switches but not the iotors, and try the following tests:

2068 10 PRINT IN 31; ';: INPUT ' ':60T0 10

zxai 1 REM xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

10 FOR X=16514 TO 16519 20 INPUT A 30 POKE X,A 40 NEXT X

100 PRINT USR 16514; •; 110 60T0 100

Input the following lachine code ignoring the inforiation after the seiicolon:

219 31 ; IN A, (31)

79 ;LD C,A

6 0 ;LD B,0

201 ;RET

You should get a screenfull of 255's, which change to 223's, 239's and 207's as the switches are pressed. If you don't get 255's then check the wiring around IC1 and IC2 on the interface board. Next, switch everything off and connect the iotors. Switch on again. If one or other of the iotors starts, try switching on again. If the condition persists, check the wiring around IC3, the area around the transistors and the diodes. If the iotors are silent, then try the following tests:

2068 OUT 31,1 one iotor should start

OUT 31,2 saie iotor should reverse

OUT 31,0 stops iotor

OUT 31,4 the other iotor should start

OUT 31,8 reverse

OUT 31,0 stop

To get both iotors running, add the nuibers together:

OUT 31,5 Both iotors running

OUT 31,9 !•* iotor forward, 2"- iotor reverse

OUT 31,10 both iotors reverse

OUT 31,6 !•* iotor reverse, 2"d iotor forward

SINC-LINK

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30 POKE X, A

40 NEXT X

100 PRINT "INPUT CONTROL NUMBER: 1,2, 4,8, 5,9,10,6, 0"

110 INPUT X

120 POKE 16521, X

110 RAND USR 16520

110 GOTO 100

Input the following Machine code ignoring the intonation after the seiicolon:

62 0 211 31 201

;LD A,0 ;OUT 31, A ;RET

COHPWEXTS:

The results should be the saie as for the 2068.

Interface Board

Hot or Board

IC1 74LS32 IC2 74LS125 IC3 74LS273 IC4 7805 Ri,2 10K C3,4,8 lOOnF

HISC VEROboard 25 x 26 holes

Wirewrap edge connector with

polarizing key at position 3 Stall heat sink for 7805

IC5,6 7416

TR1-4 PNP, TIP36 or equivalent

TR5-8 NPN, TIP35 or equivalent

Dl-B 1N4001

R3-10 150 ohis

C5 lOOOuF 25v Electrolytic

C6,7 lOOnF

HISC VEROboard 37 x 36 holes

2 SPST Switches, Norially Open 6 ft 10 wire Ribbon Cable 2 5v 6eared Hotors with wheels

SINC-LINK

9

QL JOTS and TITTLES Page i

by John Juergens

I've been corresponding with Hugh Howie for the better part of two years. During that tine I've mentioned various things which do and do not work for me on our Gold Card QL. Hugh suggested that these should be shared via SINC-LINK.

Our QL has three disk drives: FLP 1 is a 5.25"/720K drive, FLP 2 is a 3.5"'720K drive and FLP 3 is a 3.5"/3.2M/ED drive. FLP 3 was velcro'd onto the double-drive case which houses FLP 1 & 2.

FLP 3 uses only 5 volts which is furnished by the double-drive power supply. We use FLP 3 as one would a hard disk and, as such, it's very handy and contains a lot of stuff I would have to look through other disks to find when I need it. Like Topsey, it grew ... and grew until eventually I had to decide what to save and what to keep on it. Again, eventually, that process will have to be repeated ... and repeated ... but that is sort of the way life is.

If you believe, as I do, that simpler is better then why press CTRL & C when one keypress will do it? I use the British Pound Sign & tilde key as I have yet to find aother regular use for that key. To change CTRL & C to the BPS, refer to JBOOT, below.

If you use Quill you may find that after some amount of character deleting and re-arrangement, the screen seems odd or the cursor is not positioned correctly, just press SHFT & F5. It's quick and straightens things out.

Although I have used TaskMaster and bslieve it to be a truly great programming triumph, I prefer for several reasons to use a modification of Bill Cable's Taskette switcher. One of the problems I encountered initially with setting up Taskette was that the only thing that would stop the SuperBasic portion from multi-tasking with the on-screen application was to let SuperBasic come to rest with an INPUT command. That is, INKEY$(-1) would initially stop activity in SuperBasic but as soon as one hot-keyed into an application, such as Abacus or Quill, and pressed a key, it would trip the SuperBasic INKEY$(-1) and off the program in SuperBasic would go ALONG WITH the application, slowing both down noticeably. Worse still was that hot-keying back into SuperBasic would result in chaos.

That all changed, i.e., requiring an INPUT command in SuperBasic to utilize the Taskette switcher, when I discovered the extensl file in the QL-Exchange suite recently released into public domain. When extensl is RESP'd and called in a BOOT program, not only does it stop SuperBasic from multitasking when INKEY$(-1) is employed but it RE-WRITES the last program screen automatically in response to either CTRL & C or a POKEd substitute.

Macros: I think that macros rank right alongside the eraser and Kleenex in the world pantheon of great inventions. The first macros I came across were the KeyDefine group. Later, when I purchased Turbo Quill + I found to my surprize that the package not only speeded up Quill but that it included the capability of macro-making. The MOST interesting macro of TQ+ was the one invoked by CTRL & S (S_Keydef) because it was a START-UP macro, that is, after Quill loaded, the macro would "play" automatically without need for another/other keypress(es) . This occurrs only because TQ+ actually modifies the Quill program during the TQ+ installation to have Quill "request" the file S_Keydef.

SINC-LINK

QL JOTS and TITTLES

Page 2

Once it became clear that macros COULD do something automatically upon loading one of the Quill suite of programs, I looked for many years for a macro which would start Abacus and Archive. Yes, I was aware that the "run ..." command in Archive would start one's program WITHIN Archive but that provided no help in starting the "run ..." automatically.

Initially, I believed that the TSL complement to the QL-Xchange group provided that capability but I was wrong. Although the TSL capability in the PC-Four group, for IBM compatibles what QL-Xchange is to QLs , WILL perform a start-up function, the TSL capability in QL-Xchange will not; that is, the TSL capability in QL-Xchange can only be keypress-initiated once the Main Menu screen in Xchange is displayed but not before.

Then, a few months ago. Dilwyn Jones, sent me something he threw together - out of the goodness of his big heart. To make it work he used part of his Dilwyn Jones Toolkit - a remarkable collection of commands and routines for a truly give-away price - and (included) a procedure called QUEUE which he had lifted from Quanta. QUEUE 's author is Simon Goodwin. QUEUE' s essence is that it will send the contents of a$ to WHEREVER the cursor is enabled. This, of course, is the basis for an application- start-up macro using a switcher such as Taskette.

We now can do most anything we wish IN Abacus, Archive and/or Quill PROM SuperBasic starting with LOADing them to running Commands or Functions.

With this article-on-disk to Hugh Howie I have included two files: JBoot and JBootl. They include everything I've mentioned above and are lightly REMark'd. Additionally, included are the machine code files to make the utilities run. If you wish to use them, you'll have to get a copy of the file(s) from Hugh.

QUEUE is run with my procedure Cue. Cue is invoked from procedures starting with CueWP.. and CueSS.. which contain the macros running from SuperBasic but AFFECTING Abacus or Quill WHILE actually in and running Abacus or Quill. Taskette is procedure MTsk.

QL LIBRARIAN NOTE .* -

A-6 tho, JLL&tJjvg* oa.*, abouut qXwqji pclq<u> Jtong , and thosio. oslo, othesv iX£o^> KaoaOtad £o ma/tc, tho. uJtXJUUty <tu/L, I wXJUL ^appJLy any mam best u/AJth tha compJLoJto, thing on dUL&h,. TKo* uu>ua& <LondAJbLoru> , -6<uid me, a 4 OAjfwuUtoA d<L6k, and Kotuum postage,. I can. kand&o, 5 1/4 7 20 8 1440 and 3 1/2 OD, HO, ED <LUn*.

SINC-LINK

THE RELEASE OF XCHANGE

Re,cent£y I ie,&eXved a uihote, ^tach 04 d<U>k*i> 4tom Ron BULzzaxd, and on one, 04 the, d<Lt>h6 wcu> a tn,<LatX^e, on Xchange., the, t<Lc,ojvtJLy leJlejaAed P4>4,on p-togiam. The, axJLJLcJLe, dojjJU> wtth how X. change, wa4> leJtejaAeM, , and g^Lve^ a tot 04 XjnionjnaJULon on the, iu>e, thU> pKogAjam.

ThlA <U>4u,e,f I wXJUL g<lve, the, hiAto*,y , oa> t,otd by Gunthesu StAjjube, 8 ExJUung Jac,ob<6ent 04 the, manejULV esUsig to have, tt i.eJlejL<t>e,d . NexJL >Lk<t>ULe, I wXJUL g-Lve, the, n,eA>t, which <L6 tXtted "XCHANGE lntn,odu,cAX,on and Re^e*,ejtce. InionjmatJLon"

l«gk lovie.

***************************

Kabenhavn, 7.7.93

Dear QL user,

At last we succeeded in getting the XCHANGE program released for you, the QL user. XCHANGE was programmed for the THOR based on the standard PSION QL software. Dansoft paid a considerable amount of money to have an improved version of the standard software but based around the concept of the IBM XCHANGE version. The software was then distributed on license from PSION as the standard software running on the CST THOR PC computer. Three versions were made: one english version, one danish version and a QUILL-only XCHANGE version in danish (sorry QL-users!). Around 1989 the production of the THOR computers were stopped due to cash flow problems. Dansoft and THOR International stopped the THOR business a year later. All excisting services were moved to other people. The Ritzau news system (NB: please refer to QL WORLD anno 1987-88) is still running in various information centres like the danish television and radio stations. Nobody had at the time any idea of releasing the XCHANGE software to the QL users. However, Dansoft knew that pirate copies were around running on QL's and other compatibles! We had copies of it!

In early 1993 we contacted Hellmuth Stuven (former owner of Dansoft) to get an idea of the status of the THOR XCHANGE program. He informed us that he paid for the development costs and an exclusive agreement of the sole distribution of the THOR XCHANGE software. He agreed to release the software to the QL community. We now realise that PSION themselves have no objection of letting the software flow freely among QL users (the letter printed in the June issue of QL-world) .

The THOR XCHANGE contained a minor degree of software protection against letting the program run other platforms than the THOR computer. It was a simple check whether a 'THOR watermark' was present or not (the THOR serial number display on initialisation of the computer). If no watermark was present the program simply displayed 'This software is only running on a THOR', and executed an infinite loop (the program had to be killed from another source, e.g. SuperBASIC) . The software protection has now been removed .

SINC-LINK

THE RELEASE OF XCHANGE

In addition, we have improved the XCHANGE program in other areas:

1. XCHANGE used to call the MODE system call to redraw its windows. You already know the effect - all windows below XCHANGE are displayed momentarily. If you have a look of the old PSION boots you will notice that they close SuperBASIC windows #1 and #2 before execution the PSION program to prevent the 'window demonstration'. This has now been fixed.

2. XCHANGE (and the previous PSION quartet) created a dummy job for its workspace. The drawback of this is that if you accidentally kill that job the mother job will crash (since its workspace has been corrupted due to QDOS using the memory for its own purposes). XCHANGE has now been modified to allocate its workspace in the Common Heap Area (dynamic allocation/ deallocation) as any job usually does.

3. The old PSION quartet had no active cursor which had the effect of not being able to activate the PSION console input by CTRL C, if the program had been executed by the SuperBASIC EXEC/EX commands. The problem of that were fixed if you installed the pointer environment with its protected windows. If you do not have any window system installed in your QL, you would have the same problem with XCHANGE. However we have modified XCHANGE with an active cursor (but not visible) to prevent that problem.

Unfortunately all THOR XCHANGE documentation (based around QUILL files) exists only in danish. There is still a chance to get information in english, since all english THOR users have the standard THOR manuals. You should be able to contact a THOR user through QUANTA. However, much incorrect information will be present, since it was written before the XCHANGE program was finished for the THOR (the XCHANGE information in the english THOR manuals were based around the IBM XCHANGE version which has more features than the present THOR version). Do not despair, dear QL user, since you still have the online help (with Fl). Additional information of XCHANGE will be found in this document. We have only included the information that cannot be read from the XCHANGE help files. All other information should be comprehendable from the help files.

One last thing; both the old PSION programs and XCHANGE draw their lines around menus by POKE'ing directly to the screen memory! EASEL draws its graphs partially in the same way! If you use the ATARI QL-emulator with the EXTENDED MODE 4 emulator card (780x280 pixels in mode 4) a lot of mess is drawn onto the screen whenever an XCHANGE menu is drawn or XCHANGE EASEL is active. This is because the base address of the screen memory is lower than on the QL. If you have installed the QVME card in your ATARI, there is no problem since the video memory on the card is placed at a completely different address (in high memory). Since the menu lines is drawn in the old screen memory you will have XCHANGE running perfectly without the menu frames. However you will get only half of the graphics on the screen in XCHANGE EASEL - the rest is actually POKE'd in the old screen memory. With driver release E.30 you can use a command to activate the standard 512x256 resolution with all screen output directed to the old screen memory. This is then copied via the fast ATARI blitter chip to the QVME card. XCHANGE will display everything again as it used to.

Executing the XCHANGE on a QL (or compatible)

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THE RELEASE OF XCHANGE

Since XCHANGE was designed to run on a THOR, certain things must be obeyed to be able to execute it on a QL:

1. You must have at least 256K expanded RAM in your QL. XCHANGE is a 183K program which needs minimum 64K workspace.

2. XCHANGE creates a workfile, ,Psion_xch* in raml_ . It is therefore needed to have a ramdisc driver installed. If you have a Gold Card, an ATARI QL emulator, or a QL with expanded RAM and QRAM/QPAC2, there is no problem since they install a RAM disk on initialisation. If you do not own a RAM disc, but have a disk drive, you can execute the following.*

FLP_USE RAM < ENTER >

EXEC RAM 1_XCHANGE < ENTER >

The June issue of QL-world indicates that other modified versions of XCHANGE V3.90 exists. If you should get any information, please let us know.

If you should have any queries, please contact us at the following address :

Gunther St rube

Gl. Kongevej 37, 2.th

DK-1610 Kobenhavn V

Denmark

We hope that you will enjoy XCHANGE, and, it is your responsibility to distribute XCHANGE to every QL user you know!

Best wishes from

Gunther St rube & Erling Jacobsen

DID YOU KNOW?

The origin of the terms bug and debugging is thought to have occurred in 1945 during the development of a computer called the Mark II. A relay in the machine failed. The cause of the failure was found to be a moth. The development team carefully removed the moth and taped it into their log book. From that time on. when the computer was not working, the development team members said they were debugging the computer.

DID YOU KNOW?

The keyboard as we know it (QWERTY) was designed in the last century for use on the Remington Typewriter. The designers found that it was too easy to jam the hammers on the typewriter, so they moved the most commonly used keys around to decrease the typing speed. Several alternative keyboard layouts are available but few people take the time to learn them.

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News - and some QL Library Additions

bj Hugh Howie Page 1

DETROIT AREA BBS

I have recently heard from John Impellizzeri that he and Don Walterman have set up a BBS in the Detroit area, and that they have a linkup with Tony Firshman's (of TF Services) BBS in England to exchange messages with other QL users in Europe.

There are file areas with plenty of the latest public domain programs available for download. Any message you leave on the BBS will be echoed around other BBS's in Europe.

This BBS is available 24 hours a day, 300/1200/2400 baud callers are welcome. There is no cost other than a phone call to the Detroit, Michigan, area.

This BBS runs entirely on a Sinclair QL and is called "Qbox-USA", and can be reached at (810) 254 - 9878.

AN 800 NUMBER BBS?

I have also heard a rumour that there will soon be an 800 number BBS. It will be operated by Taylor Penrose, and I understand it will be in Florida.

It will be a few weeks before it is up and running, and will operate from 1 AM to 2 PM EST. The number is to be:- (800) 942 - 6721

You are asked to call voice before dialing with your modem.

Further information will be provided as it becomes available.

MIRACLE in NEWPORT to be REPEATED.

It has been announced that IQLR will be holding another Miracle in Newport on May 14th of this year. I have been told that Stuart Honeyball of Miracle Systems will again be in attendance. This will probably be the North American debut of the SUPER GOLD CARD, utilising the 68020 CPU.

Reputed to be three times faster than the Gold Card - this makes it about 25 times faster than the original bare 128K QL! Four Disk drive capability, 24 Mhz. 32 bit. RAM of 3968 KB. Parallel/Centronics port. And goodness knows what else. Hey mother where is my check book?

Talking about check books, that would appear to be the only fly in the ointment. The cost for the

SUPPER GOLD CARD is going to be about £375, and with a Gold Card used in exchange about £250. Those prices could and probably will be changed before this gets into print.

I have heard that Dilwyn Jones and family are coming. Many were sorry he was absent last year. No doubt he will have plenty of his software catalogue items to assist you in getting rid of that heavy wallet!

John Impellizzeri and his partner Don Walterman will have their QB0X_USA BBS in actual operation.

Bob Guilder will have his digitiser in operation.

Ron Dunnett of QUBBESOFT will there with his Fastnet QL networking interface. By that time his IDE hard disk interface called QUBIDE might also be available.

Al Boehm will be showing his cloud making ideas which he uses in his job of creating cloud patterns for showing on TV weather charts .

Paul Holmgren and Frank Davis from Mechanical affinity will be there with a whole stack of new goodies. I believe they are trying to expand their software endeavors.

Ernie Richardson is returning.

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News - and some QL Library Additions

bj Hugh Bowie Pagr

It is anticipated that there will even be a German contingent coming over - but this has not been confirmed as of this date. Perhaps the cost of travel might be too much.

This year the show will be held in the Howard Johnston Motel, where the facilities should be a vast improvement over last year.

Dinners, Sunday brunch, get togethers, are all laid on, add what you want to do yourself, and this should be a great show.

All in all, it looks as if this might be the show to see for this year.

It is a great pity that we cannot have a QL or Sinclair get-together nearer the centre of the continent. Just imagine the interest that would create, when folks from all over would have a better chance of attending. To say that the QL is dead is not bourne out by the interest being shown in all parts of the world, and by the proliferation of new improved hard and soft wares being produced. Today, the QL is what it was intended to be, and there are not many computers which have withstood the test of time as the QL has .

CHEAP MODEM

There are some 2400 baud modems available at a very modest cost, $8.95. They are uncased and require a $1.50 power supply to be soldered in. They are available froml- Halted Specialities Co. Phone 1 800 441 5833

The modem (an EVEREX) is part number 14467, and the adapter and its connector, part number 14041 costs $1.50.

That is the extent of my knowledge on

those modems .

DKOPY ~ a Disk Copier

I have received from John Juergens a disk copier that will allow a disk to be copied to and from the same disk drive, and also will handle the ED drive. Operation is relatively slow, but it does make a photo image copy.

Title:- DK0PY_BAS

To copy from flpl_ to flpl_ is slow, and it takes about seven disk changes to complete the task. Of course it will also copy from drive to drive. There are certain limitations but there are many who will be able to make use of this routine. It will be on library disk UTIL_2.

It requires Gold Card and TK2 to be active. It was designed to fill in some of the gaps in "DISCOPY" which is a commercial program. DKOPY is PD.

The only way to assess DKOPY for your, own use, is to try it.

ZIP / UNZIP

Zip/Unzip is a file compression system which is mainly used in BBS's for the transmission of information in a condensed form, thus saving phone time to say the least. It can also be useful if you wish to send someone a lot of material on disk, again, a saving of postage not to say the cost of the disks.

Most material can be condensed to about half its original size. Large files can be compressed more than small ones. A BOOT file of half a dozen lines for example will go over without compression, but a long file of a few hundred K will have a compression rate of sometimes over 70%. An average

full disk will be compressed about 60%.

The ZIP suite is about 650K (UNZIPPED) and if you ZIP it you don't have any means to UNZIP it!

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Page 3

The version in the library is version 3, and is on Library disk ZIP_1

NOTE

The following files are on C0MM_2 disk, and are in ZIPped form, so you will require the ZIP_1 disk to make them available. As stated later, those and UNZIP can be combined on the one HD disk for your convenience.