8-Bit Software Online Conversion

New SYSTEMS Module - SYSTEMS Shares v8a Members may recall the mention of the 3rd program in the SYSTEMS series being discussed earlier this year. I am pleased to report that the new SYSTEMS Shares program is now almost complete and should be ready for roll-out on the Issue 18 disc. SYSTEMS shares as it's name suggests is an interactive share dealing terminal which enables the user to keep track of a wide variety of share portfolios. That is the basic theory behind SYSTEMS Shares, but in practice it is a lot more involved .... SYSTEMS shares was originally created to be of use in the educational sector back in 1986 and was very successful in motivating the interest of school pupils in the goings on of the stock exchange and city financial reports. There are 3 modules of the program with the first being the "dealing desk" at which users buy and sell shares, the second being the "enquiries desk" which provides detailed analysis of portfolios held, and finally the "supervisor mode" which is the program that teachers and/or co-ordinators use to maintain various accounts and portfolios. The whole of SYSTEMS shares is based around the "Account" which behaves rather like a bank account. Via the supervisor module the user is allocated an "account" which is created and credited with some capital at the supervisors discretion (ie. 1000.00). These funds are then used to purchase and sell shares over a period of time in an attempt to make some money. Accounts can be credited and debited at the supervisors will. Pupils at one of my local schools have now been using SYSTEMS shares for more than 2 years and regular competitions are held to see who can make the most money in a set period of time (ie. 3 months). The financial times is regulary checked by pupils along with the city pages of ceefax for reports hints as to which companies to invest in, and which to aviod. Each pupils account information is held on his/her own personal disc which is loaded into the disc drive before dealing commences in order to keep security and secrecy absolute. The share prices and information used by SYSTEMS shares is obtained through an Acorn Teletext Adaptor with ATS rom. The share price list on BBC's CEEFAX service is used to collect information on 300 companies for presentation within the program. At schools, "Dealing Time" is once a day at lunchtimes when the computer club is open and the latest share prices have been obtained via the ATS rom 10 minutes before opening time. All dealings made by pupils are recorded on a separate "transactions log" disc which is cross-referenced to when selling shares meaning that the sneaky altering of files saved to disc is instantly detected. NEW VERSION 8a As with all SYSTEMS programs, SYSTEMS shares has been through a lot of versions to date. The latest version will be a total re-write of the original program in order to accommodate all types of user whether serious, educational or fun. A few of the new and existing features are summarised below ... 1. 3 Modules - Dealing, Enquiry and Supervisor 2. "accounts" system makes for more realistic dealing as there is a limit to what your account can stand. 3. Automatic capture of share data from an Acorn teletext adaptor if available. The manual entry of share data is also permitted for those users without access to a teletext adaptor. 4. Global or Individual share portfolio analysis. 5. Automatic updating of accounts each time program is run. 6. Full account opening, amending and closing facilities provided from within the supervisor program. 7. Each purchase or sale is recorded and presented in a bank statement style form when requested. 8. Highest and Lowest share prices recorded for the year on every company. ... plus many more too numerous to list here. Since the BBC in their wisdom decided to abandon their weekly FREE downloading service, many teletext adaptors have become redundent with their only apparant use to view teletext screens. SYSTEMS shares is one program which will make full use of an attached adaptor. After the BBC closed down it's telesoftware service the price of adaptors has fallen remarkably and a good second hand working adaptor can be obtained for as little as 30.00. If all goes well, the SYSTEMS shares program will be signed off and ready for issue by issue 18, together with the familiar massive documentation. As the majority of members do not possess Acorn Adaptors, there will be a datafile on every 8BS issue disc in the future containing all the latest share prices. For users with access to a modem the latest prices for SYSTEMS shares will be available weekly on Resolve Communications. There will also be a new 8BS service where members can send off for share prices as often as they like. More details soon. I hope that the above has whetted your appetite and I hope that all members will make good use of SYSTEMS shares when it is lauched hopefully next month. Duncan Webster.