8-Bit Software Online Conversion

8-bit Software Disc Magazine (c) Duncan Webster 1991 Issue 14 (July 1991) NEWS I will begin by apologising for the lateness of issue 14. The delay was caused by late responses due to holidays plus the fact that I was called away on a course for the week beginning the 22nd July which clashed with the issue launch. To to top the lot there were a few gremlins in the SYSTEMS software which is launched this month. Consiquently, future issues will be affected so I propose put back the launch date for issue 15 until the 01 September 1991. Apologies once again for the inconvenience. SYSTEMS Version 6a LAUNCH At last! SYSTEMS server Version 6a is on this disc. This version of SYSTEMS server is the largest upgrade done to date so please proceed with caution - the next major upgrade is planned for the end of the year so please keep your ideas flowing through. The manual is massive but essential and VERY EASY TO UNDERSTAND. If you have any problems, then I am only a phone call away. Full details are provided in articles within this magazine plus the manual itself. CODES OR NOT? One member has asked when spooling text to disc whether the codes are required (as the Interword ROM would ask you). The answer is NO. Just spool your text as plain ASCII if you are using this method. RISK GAME Members might not be aware that the computer game of Risk! heralded the beginning of PD for the 8-bit BBC Micro. The author wrote into the Micro User stating that he had written a game, and should anyone wish for a free copy then write to him. The editor of the MU remarked that "is this the start of PD for the BBC?" - the rest you know. One member has written in asking for a BBC Master 128 version of Risk! is available? - I cannot say, but I can say that the computer game Risk! is very shortly to be added to the TBI pool of 8BS. URBAN WAR Veterans (?!) of 8BS will remember that issue 7 was totally dedicated to the game Urban War much to the delight of some members, and the disgust of others. Many people have asked me about an upgraded version, or better still, a sequel! Hugh Williams has informed me that he HAS started on improving Urban War, and I do seem to remember him telling me on the phone that a follow up might be around by the end of the year. We can only wait and see .... MEMBERSHIP New membership to 8BS is now beginning to ebb a little (thank god) thus giving me more time to concentrate on existing members of 8BS for the time rather than constantly sending off enquiry replies. The Micro User have left my name off their PD list for this month upon my request, so I am counting on all existing members to continue their support. I have also been asked on more than one occasion about why I allocate members with user numbers. I am not going to bore you with the technicalities, but I will say that this method WAS used in preparation for the upgrade to SYSTEMS server. Each copy of the program has the member's ID number written into the software (in many places) primarily so I do not mix up different discs, but mostly in an effort to curb piracy as I shall be able to trace any copy back to it's source via the serial number. The user numbers are also provided in further preparation for the automated Programmers Returns program which is currently being constructed. Finally, they are all uniform (as in the same length - 3 characters) thus making the file handling routines in the 8BS database much easier, and a heck of a lot quicker to cope with. TECH TIPS After a small delay, Andy Nibbs has come up trumps again with another edition of Tech Tips. This second edition is much better and bigger than the last one and contains a lot of useful answers. Andy hopes to be able to issue an edition of Tech Tips every month from now. *** IMPORTANT *** As you may be aware the current format of the disc magazine (ie. this format) was only intended to be temporary, but a lot of you tended to like it a great deal, especially as you could print the articles at will. I have to decide this month whether to adopt the current style of the magazine permanantly, or to revert back to a mode 7 format magazine, much the same as the TECH TIPS format. I need to know which you would prefer - current style or Tech Tips style? Please let me have your preferences amoungst your issue 14 returns. MAGAZINE ARTICLES On 10th July 1991, when I was about to start creating the issue 14 software and magazine, I realised that I had next to no articles or information to enter onto the word-processor. By 15th July I have had too much - the magazine "in tray" is now overflowing and contains a lot of material that disc space just simply will not allow. I have been considering ARCHIVING the magazine which members will have to de-archive before reading. If any member can write, or can adapt a PD version of BDARC (for example) that is EASY to ARC and deARC files on, then please let me know - any submissions will be looked at but the most SIMPLE, EASY TO UNDERSTAND one will be used constantly. I have tried my best to mention all members who wrote in at least once in this issue - if you are not mentioned and you HAVE written in, then please bear with me as I have NOT forgotton you. Unfortunately, switching to ADFS is totally out of the question at present as over 30 members do not have access to this facility. I also have NO time to create a cut down DFS version of an ADFS issue. The only alternative would be to use TWO DFS discs. If I decide to do this then members will be notified well in advance. BACK ISSUES In order to answer about 50 questions in one paragraph of text, I will now announce the following .... ALL back issues from issue 4 to the present are available from 8BS. Members requiring a duplicate of a back issue(s) already received can obtain copies free of charge (just send disc and SAE). Newer members who did not join until issue 10 or later should enclose a copying fee of 50p for each back issue requested (should have joined earler eh?). PROGRAMMERS RETURNS All members are now sending returns and letters on disc which is great and I thank you all for maintaining your excellent level of response and co-operation. However, as I print out all correspondence received on disc before bunching them together, I have noticed that a few members are not quoting their ID's within the text they submit. Consiquently there have been a lot of returns published this month with a user number of ??? which means that you did not quote your ID within the letter you sent me on disc. Please be sure to quote your user number at the top of your text when sending me returns on disc. Thanks. Just one other quick note in answer to a query from Mick Needham (6EE) to say that it is perfectly acceptable to bunch all you Programmers returns and letters etc. into one text file. *** VERY IMPORTANT *** One member has very kindly sent me a complete circuit board for a picture digitiser along with full documentation. I regret to report that I have lost your letter and cannot remember your name. Please get in touch by phone or letter ASAP as I OWE YOU MONEY!!!! The digitiser is great and is working fine and I am beginning to feel really guilty about not being able to contact you. REPLIES TO ADVERTS Just a reminder that all members who wish to respond to other member's adverts should contact me by phone or letter so that I may pass on the advertisers details in order for you to make contact. It is then up to you how you deal with each other. Please note that this is NOT a licence to obtain any members name & address which will remain strictly confidential. MWPD MAILSHOT Finally, members will have noticed an accompanying advertisement within the issue 14 software for MWPD run by Martin Watson. Martin, who used to format the 8BS magazine has now set up his own PD library and has a great selection of software. His cataloue is enclosed and contains a lot of stuff that 8BS hasn't got around to publishing yet. For further information please write to Martin direct at the address within the material.