by Steven Flintham
Joker is a simple program which displays jokes at random from a disc-based data
file. The first version was written in October 1991 as my first multitasking Arc
himedes program. I recently rewrote the Archimedes version and decided to conver
t it to the 8-bit BBC series at the same time. The joke files on BBC version 1.0
0 and Archimedes version 2.00 are identical.
When run, a "title" screen will appear and there will be a relatively short dela
y while the computer scans through the joke file. You will then be prompted to p
ress SPACE to continue, at which point a joke will be displayed. Pressing SPACE
after that either displays the rest of the joke (if it doesn't all fit on the sc
reen at once) or displays the next joke. The jokes in the file are marked as use
d after being displayed to prevent repetition, so the disc must be left in the d
rive and must not be write protected during use. Pressing ESCAPE at almost any t
ime will close the joke file and quit the program.
When all the jokes have been seen, there will be a short delay while they are al
l marked as unused again and they will being to repeat - this is, obviously, una
voidable. Repetition between resets is, however, avoided.
Modifying the joke file
If you don't like the jokes currently used by the program or you want to add mor
e, you can edit the file "Jokes". Each joke begins on a new line with |$ or |^ (
I recommend you use the former, as this marks it as unused since the last reset
- however, it will eventually be displayed if you use |^) and then takes the for
m of straight text with RETURN's ONLY where a new line is required. Joker automa
tically prevents words being split at line ends.
The end of the joke is indicated by the |^ or |$ of the next joke, or by a ^ on
its own line if there are no more jokes.
Examining the existing file should make the format clear if this is incomprehens
Copyright and distribution
The program code for Joker 1.00 is freeware, and may be copied freely provided n
o profit is made in the process and that all the files remain unchanged. However
, it remains (C) Steven Flintham 1993. The joke file is, of course, exempt from
this copyright. Nevertheless, the program code may not be distributed with a cha
nged joke file (to prevent confusion between versions and to avoid me being held
responsible for people taking offense at jokes added by someone else!) If you w
ant, you can distribute changed joke files separately, as long as they are accom
panied by a documentation file stating that you are the "author"
Joker is not guaranteed suitable for any particular purpose and the author canno
t be held responsible for any damage caused to software or hardware through the
use of this application, nor for any damage caused as a result of software or ha
rdware damage. If you discover any problems, feel free to write to me at the add
ress below, but it cannot be guaranteed that any problems will be corrected.
If you have any jokes you would like me to consider adding to the joke file in l
ater versions, please send them to me. A letter will do - no need for a disc, bu
t if you do want to send one for some reason, please note that I can only handle
the following formats:
40 track single sided DFS }
40 track single sided ADFS ('S') } 5.25 inch
80 track double sided ADFS ('L') 3.5 inch
Please send an SAE if you want your disc back.
My address for problems and jokes is:
6 Laythorpe Avenue
If you're a keen BBC user, why not join 8-bit Software, a disc-based magazine &
user group. For more information, write to:
1 Oakwood Drive
enclosing an SAE. Alternatively, send a blank disc in any of the following forma
80 track double sided DFS } 3.5 inch and 5.25 inch
80 track double sided ADFS ('L') }
along with a 50p coin for a copy of the latest edition.
Any 8BS members reading this can contact me via 8BS, user ID 15A.