8-Bit Software Online Conversion

                                                    To: 999 (all members) From: K3U (Lol Simmonds) Subject: I want everything! What would be good is if there could be a split screen for the messaging system. Possibly utilising sideways RAM to stash the message being written (in the bottom half of the screen) scrolling the current issue's messages in the top half of the screen?  To : 999 + 2J3 From : 483 (Daniel Shimmin) Re : Disks damaged by microwave? Microwaves certainly would damage a disk, but most modern microwaves should have sufficient shielding to prevent any microwaves escaping. It is also possible that the disks might have been damaged by proximity to the power supply for the microwave.  To : 999 From : 483 (Daniel Shimmin) Re : Everybody sells, everybody needs I hope people aren't flicking past the wanted/for sale section without reading carefully, because there have been an awful lot of cases where I have seen someone advertise something for sale in one issue, only for someone else to put out a "wanted" ad for the same thing a couple of issues later! With regard to Master Ref. Manuals, I'm afraid I'm holding onto mine for the moment, but they shouldn't be SO hard to get hold of - there are thousands of them out there unused! If all else fails, get an old(ish) issue of Acorn Computing or BBC Acorn User and get in touch with the people trying to get rid of their BBC stuff (most of them still won't have found a buyer, and should be happy to part with a manual or two for ten quid or so). Or even the ex-BBC warehouse companies. Alternatively, try flicking through 8BS back issues - there were three Master Ref. Manuals advertised in Issue 20 alone! Just to whet your appetite a bit more, here is what each contains: Reference Manual Part 1: System Overview/System Organisation Using MOS commands and routines (including interrupts, I/O, etc.) The VDU driver Hardware & memory usage/control Filing Systems (standards/usage, commands/SWRAM/m-code) Introduction, Command Summary, M-code Usage, Errors and Technical Info for: - Cassette Filing System - Rom Filing System - DFS and ADFS ADFS Utilities Reference Manual Part 2: Aspects of BASIC Using filing systems from BASIC BASIC syntax Syntax/usage of all BASIC keywords BASIC errors BASIC technical information (keyword tokens, BASIC memory map, how BASIC uses MOS & filing systems) BBC BASIC Assembler (how to use, the environment, 65C12 op-codes and addressing modes, errors and how to deal with them) EDIT Guide (a complete guide - includes e.g. macros, "generating contents lists and indices", many hints, much more) TERMINAL emulator guide (covers just about all its aspects) Advanced Reference Manual (Watford): Much info on Internal/External I/O Detailed Circuit Description Memory Organisation Slow Data Bus (CMOS RAM, Alarm etc.) Keyboard operation, matrix, timing... Screen Display (Output, Modes, h/w scroll, palette and functions control register, CRT controller, CRTC multiplexer, VDU driver, multiplexing, refresh etc.) User Port (lots of details) Serial Processor (UART,SERPROC,buffer,control reg.) Peripheral Bus Controller (again, lots of complex stuff) 1Mhz Bus (ditto) Machine Operating System (address space map, VDU workspace, extending MOS, vectors and BRK including dual-processor systems) Dual Processor Systems (Lots of architecture, protocols, data transfer, interrupts) Z80 2nd Processor (calls, events, interrupts etc.) 80186 coprocessor (system calls, errors, monitor etc.) A few pages on DFS,ADFS,CP/M formats ANFS (11 pages of details/commands) Terminal Emulator (one page!) EDIT (one page!) VIEW/VIEWSheet file/memory format Appendices: Model B/B+ differences B & B+ / M128 differences M128 / Compact differrences ANFS / NFS differences BASIC IV changes PCB links/test points Cartridge interface 65C12 instruction set In other words, the Advanced Manual is mostly only for advanced programmers or electronics experts, and the same with Ref. Manual pt.1. Part 2 could be quite useful to anyone interested in using EDIT, TERMINAL or BASIC to their full potential. Anyone wanting to program in assembly language will want both parts 1 and 2, as will anyone who has exhausted everything the Welcome Guide has to offer. There is some overlap between Ref. Manuals 1 & 2 and the Advanced Manual. Note that, although all the manuals provide frequent hints and suggestions with regard to how to do things, they are intended mainly for people who already know what they're doing (apart from the EDIT bits); they do not aim to TEACH you how to do things, only to explain what facilities are available. Also, you are not intended to read them from end to end, but rather to consult the parts of particular interest (hence "Reference" rather than "User Guide).  To : 999 + 15A From : 483 (Daniel Shimmin) Re : InterNet and JANET InterNet is simply a very big network connecting just about the entire world. You can connect up by 'phone, but most connections are by entire sites with an on-site server and multiple terminals, such as business establishments who want e-mail or other facilities, or academic or research establishments (such as the British Joint Academic NETwork). So there is a whole variety of different (and bizarre) people out there. The software is mostly a variety of Unix operating systems (and others). The actual service of the network is paid for partly by governments (i.e. the JANET stuff, new American "info superhighways" etc.), partly by the owners of the individual sites. It all gets very complex as just about any organisation (within reason) will let you wander in, all of them have different structure and services (a lot of university places have little programs, e.g. AI ones, which throw themselves open to anyone who wanders in off the network and say "try my new program and tell me what you think"). You can obtain a user ID at NASA simply by e-mailing NASA and saying "hi, I'm a student from England, please give me an ID." The e-mail is free for students,and NASA will then helpfully send you an update of what they're doing every day, plus allow you to download megabytes of (non-classified) data, pictures etc. There are an awful lot of other services, including on-line discussion, comment and news groups, some of which are local (everyone using a particular server - but remember, some servers, e.g. mine, have 2000+ users), some national, many international. There is one "newsgroup" for every subject (yes, bizarre ones too), and you can invent your own, and most of them are very lively (i.e. contain several thousand articles at a time). There are other services (lots) that I don't even know about.  To : 999 + 2J3 From : 483 Re : Error in Issue 26 An error in one of my issues? Surely not  To : 999 From : 483 Re : Watford et cetera Watford are not really as bad as they are made out to be (yes, I know people who have had poor service, including myself), they just specialise in providing an incredibly large selection of goods at very low prices. They're not a user group. Fortunately, we are!  To : 999 From : 483 (Daniel Shimmin) Re : Master clock in year 2000 Is the Master 128 necessarily going to stop working just because the clock has gone wrong? Hang on, I'll just check... No, there's no problem, it just displays 2000 as 1900, 2001 as 1901 etc. It will probably come up with the wrong leap years though, so you'll have to either check it at the end of every February or not use the clock - it doesn't stop you using the computer for other things! Perhaps there should be an extra question in the questionnaire - "Will you still be using your Beeb in 2000?"  To : 999 From : 483 (Daniel Shimmin) Re : My new A3000 2Mb 30Mb HDD No, actually it's not mine, it's on loan from the university Computer Society (originally donated by Acorn, I'm told, so three cheers for them!) Some very impressive games it has, too, but I haven't used it for anything else yet (OK, I admit it, I haven't a clue about how to use most of the functions of the DTP packages, nor how to program it in any other way than in standard BASIC). Issue 33 was far more interesting (slightly faster to boot up, too). Perhaps I had better stick with the Master 128; or get something with ARM3 and a bit more expansion?  To: 999 (all members)+2J3 From: 20G ((Roy Dickens)) Subject: THE ACORN USER SHOW I would like to wish the ED. and everyone helping him all the best in 'Club Corner'. Lets hope that it will be a lot of fun and not too much hard work. Please remember we don't want you to convert to that Archi-wots-it. We need you to keep us all together. So keep away from those sneering sales men/women all saying "Cor wot a little un yer got, ours is bigger than that". Or "BBC 8Bit machines? Do people still 'play' with those things? Have those people changed over to decimal currency yet?" Take no notice of them, but remind them that as seen on TV Farnborough air, high tec. hospitals, and a large car manufacture (and us) still use them. So there! EDITOR....... A point here is that if anyone sneers at my machines I shall just point out that they will be VERY hard pressed to find anything like 8BS anywhere else at all. I expect many to be envious and to collect a lot of new members that only have Archimedes.  To: 999 (all members) From: K1H (J W FULLBROOK) Subject: Thanks My thanks to Bill Woodall and Tim Parsons for there assistance and Fred Nevin for his kind offer  To: 999 (all members) From: 8J4 Subject: TAILPIECE. Tired, yes, I'm tired. For several years I've been blaming it on middle (?) age, poor blood, lack of vitamins, greenhouse effect, air Pollution, hormones, dieting wax build-up, and another dozen maladies that makes you wonder if life is worth living after all. I'm tired because I'm overworked...... The population of this country is 51 million, of which 21 are retired. That leaves 30 million to do the work. 19 million are at school, leaving 11 million to do the work, of this total some 2 million are unemployed and 4 million work for the Goverment, leaving 5 million to do the work. 1 million are in the armed forces and 3 million are in local authorities, cutting the number who work to 1 million There are 620,000 in hospital and 379,998 in prison (or on the roof!). That leaves 2 people actually working - you and me. You are sitting on your backside reading this.... No wonder I'm tired!!  To: 999 (all members) From: K2F (John Davis) Subject: 8BS Did anyone else spot this item on CEEFAX recently? (This page has been transferred digitally direct to disc.) P263 CEEFAX 263 Fri 01 Apr 21:43/57              EIGHT BIT SOFTWARE RIDING HIGH     On recent news of increasing   membership in 8BS, shares jumped   37 to 418p, making it overall one   the fastest risers in the first   quarter of '94. The share price   rise has been well supported by the   institutions and looks likely to   continue in the coming 6-12 months.   Recent rumours in the City of a   substantial bid for 8BS by Rupert   Murdoch's Compcon division have   been strongly denied by editor   Chris Richardson, as have suggest-   ions of his imminent move to Frank-   furt to head IBM's Euro operations.   Headlines 201 SHARECHECK 220  To: 999 (all members) From: 3PM (DP-J) Subject: Musings TBI Disk Project? The demise of our favourite magazines, and the departure of many excellent software writers and hardware commentators from the 8 bits scene will put greater dependence upon our existing information sources. For those of us who use our machines for practical problem solving one major reason for continuing with 8 bits is the readily available low cost info/software/hardware base on which to build the next project. It seems to me that one most useful function of 8BS magazine would be to devote some TBI disks entirely to the collation of info etc on selected subjects of mutual interest to members These could be divided into say software and hardware categories comprising articles, programs, demos, literature refs, equipment, hints etc all relating to that particular topic. Topics for a TBI disk to be proposed by the membership for our editor to shortlist. Members contribute any way they can with info, articles etc. Each TBI disk project would be an on-going activity correlated by a sub-editor volunteer. (nominated by ed!) The topics could be focal points for lively comment with ideas, reporting, requests for input etc in the 8BS magazine as per the editors predilection. (You're allowed to have those Chris unless you're an MP). Contributors would not be working in isolation, with items subject to edit as required. There is a wide range of possible topics and no need to be too ambitious for starters. The end product could be TBITs (TBI Topics) under the 8BS banner? Anyway, there's a thought, a musing even. EDITOR........ Great! Let's have some volunteer editors (name your subject).  To: 999 (all members) From: 3PM (DP-J) Subject: Overheard in the IT Centre. Sprightly aged Paddy "Father, begorra if I havn't got this luv'ly 20 year old girl into trrubble now" Father: "Thats a turrible sin for a good catolic of your years Paddy. Paddy: Oh, but I'm not a catolic, father, do y'see now. Father: Not a catolic? Well what are y'tellin' me for? Paddy: Father, at 92 I'm tellin' everybody.!  To: 999 (all members) From: K4V (Trevor Crapper) Subject: General Comments As a newcomer to 8BS I would like to voice my first impressions, amazing now I know where some of the subscribers to Beebug have gone to! Seriously though I am greatly impressed by the setup, it is very businesslike and very slick indeed. Unfortunately I am virtually a none-producer and only then it's cosmetic, tarting up somebody elses damned hard work in a very minor way. My function is to use other peoples endeavours for my own benefit. About the only thing I can do is write very basic articles. Back to reality, I am very pleased to learn that the Beeb is alive and kicking, my association goes back to 1985 so I am fairly well versed with it's potential. Back to praising 8BS now, it appears that most of you do take an active part and don't just leave it all to one person. I am more than willing to offer my meagre services in any way to promote the continuance of the Beeb for the benefit of all. As an aside if anyone is interested in correspondence chess or plays the game by post and would like further informaton please contact me at the addess given. I am for my sins the Team Captain of International Friendly Matches for the British Postal Chess Federation.  To: 999 (all members) From: K2T (Jack Tourle) Subject: Weights of coins, etc. In issue 33, 3WU gave us some very useful information about weights of coins. Unfortunately, since the predecessor of Royal Mail abandoned the good old Imperial grain and ounce in favour of the European gram, we need to know, for postage purposes, how to convert from one unit to another. There are 7000 grains to 1 pound(avoirdupois), whose metric equivalent is 453.6 grams. Thus there are 15.43 grains to the gram. So 3WU's figure of 100.8 grains for the weight of one 10p piece becomes 6.53 grams; one 50p piece (208.9 grains) weighs 13.54 grams; and I reckon that a £1 coin accounts for about 9 grams. Now for the practical stuff. The envelopes which I use weigh about 8 grams each; one of my discs with sleeve goes 16 grams, and a stiffener (corrugated cardboard or plastic) about 10 grams. Therefore traffic to and from 8BS accounts for:- 1disc 2discs 3discs 4discs gr gr gr gr 2 envs. 16 16 16 16 Discs + stffr. 26 42 58 74 Coins50p 14 14 14 14 .. 10p . 7 14 21 ## ## ### ### Total wt.56 79 102 125 Only 1 envelope for return, and no coins, so wts...34 50 66 82 First class postage for 1 disc,etc. might be 25p* (60gr); 2 discs, 38p (100gr) but return 25p; 3 or 4 discs 47p*, return 38p. (*These should be checked at the Post Office, since they are near the line). If you are contributing 50p for EACH disc, then the total weights go up accordingly, but you can save by using £1 coins where appropriate, or a cheque where the amount is significant. Perhaps 2J3 would comment on the use of cheques. BEWARE if you are using heavier envelopes or discs! E & O E. (which means don't be too hard on me for any mistakes).  To: 999 (all members) From: 15A (Steven Flintham) Subject: BAS128 I notice from the issue 33 program documentation that Castore was originally written to use BAS128. I am shocked to find that anyone has managed to do anything with it - I had a quick fiddle when I first got my Master and then gave up. It seemed to crash at the slighest provocation - especially when using even fairly simple and legal OS calls. How about someone writing an article on BAS128 and how to get the best out of it?  To:999 (All members) From : 3WU Subject: Verse Well I hope you enjoyed our four legged water logged friend Pete in the last issue and I hope our editors wife enjoys this next one < So please note this one Chris > and it's Title is Footprints In The Sand which you will find listed as "B.FPRINTS" it is dressed to the left so if you can center your printer do so < Now you know why I want the VDU statement > Dont forget to load the paper as it fires straight away on run. 