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Article #91 (214 is last):
From: xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Atari SIG)
Newsgroups: freenet.sci.comp.atari.product.8bit.zmag
Subject: Z*Magazine: 11-Jan-88 #88
Reply-To: xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Atari SIG)
Date: Wed Jul 21 09:18:45 1993


""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""
SYNDICATE ZMAGAZINE   January 11, 1988
Issue #88           Volume 3, Number 2

""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""
 (c)1988 Syndicate Publishing Company

""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""
Edited by: Ron Kovacs
Circulation Assistants: Ken Kirchner
                        Susan Perry

Syndicate Zmag BBS      (2O1) 968-8148
______________________________________
Xx INDEX 88
______________________________________
[NEWS]
Winter CES Report Part 1  Marc Wielage
Atari News Update        Mr. Goodprobe
Atari Scuttlebits            Bob Kelly

[FEATURE ARTICLES]
Printer Help                 Tom Dewar
Basic Programming Part 2      J. Beebe
ZMAG 1987 Reviews Index     Ron Kovacs
ZMAG 1987 Columnist Index   Ron Kovacs
PC Pursuit Update        Mr. Goodprobe
______________________________________
Xx WINTER CONSUMER ELECTRONICS REPORT
..Press Day - Wednesday, January 6th..
______________________________________
by Marc Wielage

So far, the two biggest hooplas of the
show are DAT--the ubiquitous Digital
Audio Tape recorder, which is showing
at no less than a dozen booths-- and
Toshiba's 3-D camcorder, which some
industry observers say is just $2850
worth of gimmickry.  No doubt, Toshiba
will be getting a lot of publicity out
of this gimmicky product, designed to
appeal to the glitzy "Sharper Image"
crowd. This "3-D Cam" is a lightweight
(under 4 lbs.) VHS-C unit that has two
separate 1/2" 300,000 pixel CCD
pickups.

This makes it two, two, two cameras in
one!  It doubles the scan rate to 60
frames per second, which Toshiba
claims will minimize flicker-the worst
problem seen in past 3-D video demos.
Special glasses synchronize with the
on-screen image to create a depth-
perspective effect. 3-D buffs won't be
able to buy this camcorder until
summer at the earliest, which is just
as well; it appears to be of
questionable interest for all but the
most gimmick-crazed videophiles.

Several manufacturers are announcing
delivery of DAT players, including car
DAT/tuner in-dash units.  One of the
first confirmed table models is one
from Harman-Kardon, which will be
available in the Spring for around
$2200. Even the company admits that at
that price, they'll only sell about a
thousand of them in the U.S.  Others
predict that once DAT prices
inevitably move downwards, they could
prove immensely popular. Sony, who
just completed the purchase of CBS
Records, is rumored to be readying a
"DAT-man" series of DAT portables,
eventually to be priced under $500.

The Laserdisc market is opening up in
a big way, with new combo "multi-disc"
players arriving from Magnavox,
Pioneer, Sony and Yamaha. These models
will play conventional 4-3/4" CDs, CD
singles, CD-V discs, as well as 8" and
12" Laserdiscs. One Sony spokesman
told us they were reluctant to get
into the LV market before, but now
that they can sell the product as
being a "universal" disc player, it
has a built-in non-obsolecence factor
that should quell buyers' fears.

Pioneer's new unit will be replacing
the short-lived CLD-1010, and will
feature the long-awaited still-field
circuit for deriving special effects
from CLV videodiscs, and will sell for
around $1200.  There are also rumors
that Panasonic and JVC may be jumping
aboard the LV bandwagon as well, first
in Japan, and eventually in the U.S.
This could be the death knell for the
VHD videodisc format, which has had
only fair to middling sales overseas.
Another big trend is that of combining
TV sets and VCRs.

But unlike the "boom box"-size combos
of the past, now we're seeing tiny LCD
sets strapped to miniaturized VCRs and
players.

Sony is expected to show working
models of previously shown mockups,
including several super-small 8mm/LCD
players as small as a paperback book.
While such units won't be cheap (at
least in the $800-1000 price range),
they'll be just the thing for Walkman
fans, or for people who want to watch
yesterday's ball game while riding the
subway.

There are lots of developments
happening in the area of improving TV
quality.  Now available in Japan are
TV sets featuring IDTV (improved-
definition TV) and EDTV (extended-
definition TV, essentially the same
thing), which enhance the existing
line-standard through digital tricks
and improved circuitry. Toshiba will
be pushing their own double-scanning
non-interlaced TV set, already seen at
previous shows.  Coming up later on in
the 1990's is true HDTV (high
definition TV), featuring a wider
picture with over 1000 scan lines. RCA
will be demonstrating ACTV (advanced
compatible TV), which has 1050 lines 
and a widescreen picture, and a
Japanese consortium is exhibiting
their MUSE prototype system, a true
HDTV system with 1125 lines and a
similar widescreen aspect ratio.

In other new product news, Panasonic
is showing a new 45" rearscreen unit
with S-VHS inputs, a high-end model
made to compete with similar
projectors from Pioneer and Sony.
They're also introducing two new mid-
priced VCRs, non-Hi-Fi models with an
improved on-screen programming system.
Sony will be having private demos of
two new combo LV/CD players and at
least one ED Beta VCR.

Aside from new products, the entire
electronics biz was abuzz with news of
the near-panic earlier in the week,
with the Japanese yen sinking to its
lowest ebb since World War II: a mere
121 to the dollar. This will
inevitably result in some precedent-
setting price hikes on all VCRs, tape
decks, TV sets, and related gear over
the coming year, but probably not
quite matching the rate of inflation.
Most manufacturers, including
Panasonic and Toshiba, are considering
increases of between 5% and 10%, which
means the $500 VCR you bought last
year might now sell for $550 or more.
Even worse, this means the $1000 VCR
you buy this year may lack certain
features and the overall quality of a
similar $1000 VCR from last year.

Japanese manufacturers are also
hesitating in releasing new products
with advanced breakthroughs, simply
because their increased price-tags
will make them unappealling to the
U.S. market.  For example, Sharp has
perhaps the most deluxe consumer Super
VHS VCR on the market in Japan, with a
jog/shuttle knob, flying erase head,
and other exciting features, but it
would have to sell for over $2000 if
it were sold over here.  So don't hold
your breath at seeing this one in
North America, folks.
______________________________________
Xx PRINTER HELP
______________________________________
by Tom Dewar

These are the print commands for the
C. Itoh Prowriter 8510 printer. Many
Atari programs are set up for the
Prowriter as well as the Epson,
because it is a popular printer among
Atari owners. Some programs do not
support the Prowriter and this seems
to mainly be because the programmer
doesn't have access to the codes for
it. To try and help, I have typed
these from the Printer manual. I hope
they help.

[Following text in 80 column]


GENERAL FORMAT
COMMAND             DESCRIPTION               BASIC FORMAT
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Carriage Return     Returns carriage to       CR
                    left position             CHR$(13)

Line Feed           Moves paper up one        LF
                    line                      CHR$(10)

Form Feed           Advances paper one        FF
(Top of Form)       full page length          CHR$(12)
                    from present position

Back Space          Moves the print head      BS
                    back one space            CHR$(08)

Set Tabs            Sets a tab at each        ESC ( ,a,b,c.
                    column designated         CHR$(27);CHR$(40);
                                                "a,b,c."

Clear Tabs          Clears tab at each        ESC ) ,a,b,c.
                    column designated         CHR$(27);CHR$(41);
                                                "a,b,c."

Clear All Tabs      Clears all tabs           ESC 0
                                              CHR$(27);CHR$(48)

Horizontal Tab      Sets Carriage to          HT
                    next tab position         CHR$(09)

Pica Pitch          Sets 10 cpi pica          ESC N
                    pitch (640 dpl, 80 dpi)   CHR$(27);CHR$(78)

Elite Pitch         Sets 12 cpi elite         ESC E
                    pitch (768 dpl, 96 dpi)   CHR$(27);CHR$(69)

Compressed Pitch    Sets 17 cpi (1088 dpl)    ESC Q
                    compressed pitch(136 dpi) CHR$(27);CHR$(81)

Proportional        Selects Proportional      ESC P
                    Mode  (1280 dpl, 160 dpi) CHR$(27);CHR$(80)

Elongated           Sets elongated            SO
Character Select    character mode            CHR$(14)

Elongated           Clears elongated          SI
Character Clear     character mode            CHR$(15)

Boldface Select     Sets boldface             ESC !
                    type mode                 CHR$(27);CHR$(33)

Boldface Clear      Clears boldface           ESC "
                    type mode                 CHR$(27);CHR$(34)

Underline Select    Selects underlined        ESC X
                    text mode                 CHR$(27);CHR$(88)

Underline Clear     Clears underlined         ESC Y
                    text mode                 CHR$(27);CHR$(89)

Character Repeat    Causes the next           ESC R, nnn
                    Character to be           CHR$(27);CHR$(82);
                    printed nnn times           "nnn"

Line Feed 1/6       Sets 1/6 inch             ESC A
Inch                spacing between           CHR$(27);CHR$(65)
                    lines

Line Feed 1/8       Sets 1/8 inch             ESC B
Inch                spacing between           CHR$(27);CHR$(66)
                    lines

Custom Line Feed    Sets nn/144 inch          ESC T, nn
                    spacing between           CHR$(27);CHR$(84)
                    lines                       "nn"

Forward Line Feed   Moves paper in normal     ESC f
                    (forward) direction       CHR$(27);CHR$(102)

Reverse Line Feed   Moves paper in reverse    ESC r
                    (backward) direction      CHR$(27);CHR$(114)

Bidirectional       Printer prints in         ESC <
Printing            both horizontal           CHR$(27);CHR$(60)
                    directions

Unidirectional      Printer prints in         ESC >
Printing            forward direction         CHR$(27);CHR$(62)
                    only

Left Margin Set     Sets left margin          ESC 8, nnn
                    to position nnn           CHR$(27);CHR$(56);
                                                "nnn"

Greek Characters    Selects Greek             ESC &
                    Character Set             CHR$(27);CHR$(38)

Graphic Symbols     Selects Graphic Symbol    ESC #
                    Character Set             CHR$(27);CHR$(35)

Alphanumeric        Selects (normal)          ESC $
Characters          alphanumeric character    CHR$(27);CHR$(36)
                    Set

Incremental Print   Selects Incremental       ESC [
Mode                Print Mode                CHR$(27);CHR$(91)

Logic Seek Mode     Selects (normal)          ESC ]
                    logic-seek mode           CHR$(27);CHR$(93)

Bit Image Graphics  Dot by dot firing mode    ESC S, nnnn
                    (nnnn = # of dot          CHR$(27);CHR$(83);
                    positions ex. 200=0200)     "nnnn"

Dot Column Repeat   Following 1 byte is       ESC V, nnnn
                    repeatedly printed in     CHR$(27);CHR$(86);
                    8 dots/dot column           "nnnn"

Dot Addressing      The head is moved to      ESC F, nnnn
                    the dot position          CHR$(27);CHR$(70);
                    indicated by nnnn           "nnnn"

         Dot by Dot spacing in proportional mode

1 Dot Space                                   ESC 1
                                              CHR$(27);CHR$(49)

2 Dot Space                                   ESC 2
                                              CHR$(27);CHR$(50)

3 Dot Space                                   ESC 3
                                              CHR$(27);CHR$(51)

4 Dot Space                                   ESC 4
                                              CHR$(27);CHR$(52)

5 Dot Space                                   ESC 5
                                              CHR$(27);CHR$(53)

6 Dot Space                                   ESC 6
                                              CHR$(27);CHR$(54)
______________________________________
Xx ATARI SCUTTLEBITS
______________________________________
by Bob Kelly

ATARI! What next for home enthusiasts?

COMDEX has come and gone. In the past,
this time of the year was one of
excitement for Atari HOME computer
owners.  New products were announced.
The home user was the center of
attention.  Sales were up and the
image of a game machine company was
fading fast.  Yet, even with the
smiles on corporate Atari's face at
this year's COMDEX, an air of somber
reality pervades the user community.
Times are a-changing.

Despite a flood of new products, Atari
stock is down to the neighborhood of
$6.50 a share, reflecting a general
feeling of uncertainty.  Third quarter
earnings have been reported and they
are lower per share than the same
period of 1986.  While two-thirds of
Atari's sales remain overseas, there
is no reason to expect a dramatic
expansion in these markets.  Foreign
sales have been impacted much in the
same fashion as in the U.S., consumer
expenditures are projected to decline
since the stock market crash of
October 20.  Consensus projected GNP
growth for the U.S. in 1988 has
nosedived to 1.9%.  Last, but
certainly not the least, the purchase
of the Federated group of stores by
Atari could hamper rapid achievement
of other short-term corporate
objectives by straining cash reserves.

As for Atari's strategy, it appears
the game machine is back with a
vengeance.  Atari is now a retailer
and manufacturer of workstations for
the scientific, high-end educational,
and business markets.  However, the
68030 (32 bit) machine is still not
ready and the 8 bit user is clearly
being lost in the shuffle.  To the
home user, this all translates into a
sense that Atari Corporation has lost
its sense of direction.  (I have heard
this phrase from users more in the
last month than any other comment in
my four years writing this column). In
fact, all that happened is that the
home computer user (520/1040 ST) has
been relegated to a lesser status.
Does it really make sense for the user
community to react so negatively?
Let's examine a few of the recent
developments in more detail before
drawing a final conclusion.

I.  COMDEX

InfoWorld covered Atari's display at
Comdex in its Nov. 9 issue stating
that Atari took aim;

"Directly at business and technical
markets announcing a slew of new
products at COMDEX, including PC
clones, a CD ROM player, multiuser
software for the ST and Mega lines,
and a radical computing engine based
on the Inmos T-800 RISC processor."

The new high-end workstation is called
Abaq. It requires at minimum 4
megabytes of DRAM with each
workstation expandable to 64
megabytes.  The software [Helios]
supporting Abaq can read both Ms-Dos
floppies and Unix hard disks.  This
machine, owing to its very high
resolution graphics, is reputed to be
capable of providing a picture similar
to your camera.

The IBM PC clones introduced are
replacing those announced last year,
but NEVER introduced into the U.S.
market (this established Atari as an
industry leader in at least one
segment of the domestic market -
vaporware). Atari's variations on the
PC clone are:

              Table 1

Clone Type     Expandability     Cost
-------------------------------------
PC2  XT        4 slots         <$1000
PC4 AT         5   "           <$2000
PC5 16-MHZ-80386 machine            ?

The PC2 and PC4 are Atari machines
intended to compete in what is in fact
a shrinking market.  To illustrate,
according to IBM, they have shipped
over 1 million of the new PS/2
machines in the last seven months. The
new operating system (OS/2) to
accompany the PS/2 machines goes on
sale this month.  OS/2 supersedes the
software standard set earlier by IBM.
There is little doubt by most analysts
that OS/2 is the standard of the
future.  Thus, much of the new high
powered IBM software will not work
with the first generation clones such
as those being introduced by Atari.

The CD ROM is a product Atari
indicated it would like to market more
than a year ago.  It is capable of
being connected to both an Atari
computer as well as a stereo system, a
pleasant surprise for the audiophile.
What software will be available for
introduction with this machine remains
a mystery.

II.  Third Quarter Earnings

Atari's third quarter 1987 net income
rose by 9% to $9.9 million or 17 cents
a share versus $9.1 million or 21
cents a share in 1986.  (The number of
shares outstanding rose to 58 million
from 47.5 million over the past year.)

Revenue rose by 34% to $80.4 million
from $59.9 million for the same period
a year earlier.  Overseas demand was
accountable for about two thirds of
Atari's total revenue with the 1040ST
being the sales leader.

III.  Analysis

This is a lot to digest.  What in the
world does it all mean?  First, let's
look at the cost data and expected
delivery dates for the new products
introduced at COMDEX.

               Table 2
        Projected Availability
Cost           by               by                 by
Item          _US$__           Atari          Joe Skeptic
------------------------------------------------------------------
Abaq1/        $5,000        Apr/June '88     Late '88/'89
PC clones       *           Jan/Mar '88      June/Dec '88
IDRIS2/        800              ?                  ?
Moses LAN)3/    ?               ?                1989
CD ROM         599          February '88       Mid l988

*   see Table 1
1/  4 megabyte single processor system
    only
2/  multiuser operating system
3/  local Area Network (LAN) which
    will connect up to 17 PCs, Megas,
    Mac, STs

Atari expects most of the products to
be on the market within six months.
Given Atari's reputation for making
scheduled dates, there is a natural
reluctance to bet when the products
will be on the dealers' shelves.  An
old friend, Joe Skeptic, made his own
estimates as to when these products
might appear, shown in the 3rd column
of Table 2.  Frankly, I believe even
Joe's estimates in some cases may be
optimistic.  Why is timing important?
IBM plans to introduce a whole slate
of high-end Unix machines to the U.S.
market in 1988.  Delays make Atari's
already uphill battle for market share
more difficult.

Another immediate issue is how Atari
plans to sell these high-end products
in the U.S?  Again, they are aimed at
the business/educational/scientific
markets.  They are not intended to be
sold through mail order or Mom and Pop
stores.  They will require not only a
dealer network but a complete service
network both of which will take Atari
years to accomplish.

We now know why Federated was
purchased in the U.S.  But, what
happens beyond the 4 to 5 states where
Federated stores are located?  Atari
either needs to buy more regional
outlets or make a deal with a major
computer retailer, such as Entre
Computers.  The former option appears
unlikely for the next year or so given
Atari's cash position after the
purchase of Federated and the decline
in the value of its stock.  So, who in
the latter category is going to deal
with Atari in the U.S.?  My bet is
that Atari will first concentrate on
marketing their new machines and
establishing a dealer network in
Europe, not the U.S.  Once a
successful operation has been
demonstrated overseas, more computer
retailers should be interested
domestically.

If a growing percentage of Atari's
corporate talent focuses on the
business/scientific market, the
520/1040 ST user might well have some
justification to wonder what Atari has
in store for them.  Does Atari expect
the vast majority of present or future
home users to move up to the Mega
machine given the present price
structure?  Unlikely.

Like it or not, ignoring the home user
and concentrating its limited
resources upon LONG-TERM objectives
has to be a wise market strategy for
Atari at this juncture.  The
fundamental concern with this strategy
is Atari may have taken on too much
too soon financially and some of the
product offerings may have a tough
time penetrating the U.S. market (PC2,
non-postscript laser printer, etc.). 
Failure to deliver products this time
WILL carry serious market
consequences.  There are no easy
answers as to the future despite what
others might say.   Unless one is
sitting in the board room, any
evaluation is nothing more than an
guess (even here it still might be).
For the home user, sit back, buckle
up, 1988 could be one hell of a ride. 
The game is definitely for high stakes
- Atari's future market power.

Atarifest-1987

o Atarifest 1987 has to be rated a
  huge success.  The crowd attending
  easily exceeded the 4,000 projected
  (probably closer to 5,000). Reported
  sales by vendors were very good to
  excellent and some products such as
  the Magic Sac were completely sold
  out.

o Atari was present showing off their
  equipment.  It was a good marketing
  opportunity and they took advantage
  of it as they should.

o Local advertising for the event was
  poor.  This makes the huge turn-out
  all the more remarkable.  What
  apparently happened was while areas
  along the east coast heard about the
  show, those in the Metropolitan
  D.C./Maryland/ Virginia area were
  largely in the dark.  A better job
  has to be done next year.

Sorry no product endorsements ....
wait till February for the best of
'88.  Merry Christmas and a Happy New
Year.
______________________________________
Xx PC PURSUIT UPDATE and Atari Update
______________________________________
by Mr. Goodprobe

It seems that just when you figure
something out, and are starting to
feel real comfortable with it, they
change it! But in this case, the added
features are well worth the hassle of
getting used to a new system.

What I am referring to is the fact
that PC Pursuit, the marvellous $25 a
month flat rate phone service, has
changed their service. They now
support 2400 baud, and numerous area
codes were added. I first became
mildly aware that something was afoot
when I got on the system last Tuesday
evening, January 5th. I have all my
area code and password information
stored in macros, and I simply push
one key to dial and area code. I
pushed my handy-dandy macro key, and
the PC Pursuit answered back that it
didn't recognize my command, please
re-enter it. Well, that sure was a
surprise, so I thought I must have hit
something wrong, so I did it again....
same result. Ok, who's the wise guy?
Is my modem sending out bad
characters? Are my macros OK? I exit
back to the function key of my
Interlink program, and all looks like
it is in order. I dial a local
bulletin board, everything works as it
should and this serves to further
confuse me! Hmmm..I know I paid my
bill, whats up? Sooo, the next day I
called the friendly folk at PC
Pursuit, and am enlightened as to the
fact that the system changed January
5th. Ah, so thats the reason! Well,
what do I do? Klunk goes the mailbox
outside. In the bundle of the usual
mail order trauma is a letter from the
PC Pursuit people that contains
instructions on how to deal with the
revamped system. Now they tell me!

If you need further information on
this change, if you are a PC Pursuit
subscriber, you can reach the PC
Pursuit bbs by answering:

@C PURSUIT,YOURID(Return)
Password=Your Password(Return)

Instead of dialing with the old
format, the new format is in the
following format:

@C D/xxyyy/zz where xx=State,
yyy=City, and zz=speed.

Therefore, what you should type looks
like this:

@C D/NJNEW/12,YOURID(Return)

Password=PASSWORD(Return)

This will take you to the 201 area
code for instance.

Here is a list of the Access codes,
Area Codes and Cities.

Area Code     Access Code         City
______________________________________
 201           NJNEW        Newark, NJ
 202/301/703   DCWAS  Washington, D.C.
 203           CTHAR      Hartford, CT
 206           WASEA       Seattle, WA
 212/718       NYNYO      New York, NY
 213           CALAN   Los Angeles, CA
 214/817       TXDAL        Dallas, TX
 215           PAPHI  Philadelphia, PA
 216           OHCLV     Cleveland, OH
 303           CODEN        Denver, CO
 305           FLMIA         Miami, FL
 312           ILCHI       Chicago, IL
 313           MIDET Detroit, Michigan
 314/618       MOSLO     St. Louis, MO
 404           GAATL       Atlanta, GA
 408/415       CASJO      San Jose, CA
 414           WIMIL     Milwaukee, WI
 415/408       CAPAL     Palo Alto, CA
 415           CASFA San Francisco, CA
 503           ORPOR  Portland, Oregon
 602           AZPHO       Phoenix, AZ
 612           MNMIN   Minneapolis, MN
 617           MABOS        Boston, MA
 619           CASAD     San Diego, CA
 713           TXHOU       Houston, TX
 714           CARIV     Riverside, CA
 714           CASAN     Santa Ana, CA
 801           UTSLC SaltLake City, UT
 813           FLTAM         Tampa, FL
 816/913       MOKAN   Kansas City, MO
 818           CAGLE      Glendale, CA
 916           CASAC    Sacramento, CA
 919           NCRTP      Research
                          Triangle, NC

A couple of quick 2400 baud related
notes you may find helpful. First, at
present it seems only 713 and 303 are
actually upgraded to 2400 baud, the
rest that are active are at 1200 baud.
These will be upgraded soon, you may
check the PC Pursuit bbs for the date
when the rate upgrade will take place,
or simply try it at the 2400 level
every-so-often and eventually your
attempts will be rewarded. Also, many
300 baud modems are being replaced
with 1200 baud modems, so things will
not appear to be near as busy as they
were before. And when you call at 2400
the recognized log-on by PC Pursuit is
the "@" symbol followed at least 200
milliseconds later by a carriage
return.

Speaking of upgrades, another quickie
subject that might interest you came
to light Friday evening as I chatted
with Dave Flory on a fine multi-user
bulletin board out west called
Ironworks. It seems that Atari
hardware had become awfully hard to
come by even for dealers such as
ourselves, and the price had gone to
apparent all-time highs. According to
Dave, the extremely long back-order
situation at 3 of our distributors was
due to the fact that Europe, the self-
same place that Atari is the most
popular PC in, is gobbling a much
higher percentage of the Taiwan plant
production than ever. This means we
are recieving an equal percentage
fewer Atari computer products, and
when they are trying to service a
higher-then-ever demand, it just isnt
working. Atari will be building a
plant in Utah or Nevada, due to
favorable tax laws in both states, and
the US will recieve its Atari stock
from there. At first a plant was
planned for the Silicon Valley, but
land and tax costs were forbidding,
and this idea was scrapped. From what
I was told, sometime in the first half
of 88 this plant will open, and then,
when sufficient product is on hand,
you will see those long-promised ST TV
ads appearing. This crunch on the
supply is in humorous contrast to an
article I just read in an until-now
reliable Commodore publication. Info-
World reported this last issue that
according to all computer experts
"Atari is fast fading from the home
computer market!". Maybe the advisers
with those gems of information would
be well-suited to aid our presidential
advisors...just as reliable!

Keep those Atari's hummin'
Mr. Goodprobe
(on lend from) Midtown TV
            Atari 8/16 Repair/Sales
            (216)633-0997
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Xx LEARNING TO PROGRAM IN ATARI BASIC
 ...Part 2 of a continuing series...
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Getting Started in Atari BASIC
(C) Copyright 1986 by Jackson Beebe

This lesson is placed in the Public
Domain. Individuals, user groups and
BBS's may reprint, copy or distribute
it, as long as this notice remains
intact with the lesson.

1. LINE NUMBERS:

BASIC programs use line numbers before
each line of BASIC code.  Normal
program execution begins at the lowest
number (may be any number) and
executes each line in numerical
sequence. Programs are rarely written
from start to finish in one sitting,
and sometimes are written from end to
beginning, or from the middle toward
the beginning and end.  This means you
will usually be adding extra lines
between existing lines as you develop
or modify a program.  To allow room
for these extra lines, it is
recommended that you initially number
your lines by 10's, allowing room for
later insertions. Renumbering programs
are available either type-in or by D/L
from bulletin board systems (BBS) to
renumber existing BASIC programs. Most
programs seem to begin with the number
10. Line numbers may range from 0 to
32767 in Atari BASIC. BASIC source
code lines may have a maximum length
of three screen lines, including the
line numbers, etc.

2. REM STATEMENTS:

Any statement beginning with the
letters REM, is not executed, but is a
REMARK statement, used to label your
program. As in all BASIC commands, it
is always in upper case REM. REM
statements still need line numbers.
The example below is typical of lines
found at the beginning of BASIC
programs. As your programs grow in
size and complexity, you can insert
REM to label parts. Anything after the
REM is just a remark or explanation.

EXAMPLE:

10 REM *** PAYROLL PROGRAM ***
20 REM by Jackson Beebe  10/86
30 REM Version 1.01
40 etc, rest of program

or for parts of programs:

265 REM << COMPUTE OVERTIME >>

A few REMS can help a lot next year,
when you try and figure out how last
year's program works, to modify it.

3. PRINT STATEMENT:

This statement allows you to print ON
THE SCREEN of your monitor or TV. For
example:

10 PRINT "HELLO"

will print HELLO on your screen. You
can skip lines with blank print
statements as:

10 PRINT "HELLO"
20 PRINT
30 PRINT
40 PRINT "THERE"

This prints HELLO, skips two lines and
prints THERE. Note that anything in
quotes in a PRINT statement, is
printed EXACTLY on the screen, blanks
included. You can print literals in
quotes, or print the values of
variables (next lesson.)

If you put a comma between items in a
PRINT statement, it will skip to the
next print zone. There are 10 spaces
in an Atari print zone.

Example:

10 PRINT "HI","THERE"

This will print HI, space over 8
spaces and print THERE. The spaces per
"print zone" are controllable by
POKEing 201 with 3 to 255 (more on
that later). Watch this:

10 PRINT ,,"HI"

This skips over to 20, then prints HI.
Commas will come in handy for putting
things in columns for printout, and
printing tables.

If you put a semicolon between items
in a PRINT statement (normal), it
doesn't skip any spaces.

10 PRINT "HI";"THERE"

This prints HITHERE. A key feature is
a trailing semicolon (left at the end
of a line). This suppresses a carriage
return. Don't panic. This just means
the printer "sits there" waiting at
the end of a line like this:

10 PRINT "HI";
20 PRINT "THERE"

This prints HITHERE.

See, the printer "waited" at the end
of HI. USUALLY items in a PRINT
statement are separated by semicolons,
like:

10 PRINT "HI ";"THERE ";"JOE"

This prints HI THERE JOE. Note I left
trailing spaces after the I and E,
inside the parenthesis. You can use
leading spaces when you wish to begin
printing less than 10 spaces in.

10 PRINT "     This is indented"

Without a trailing semicolon, every
time a program sees PRINT, it skips to
a new line.

You can print on a printer, following
these same rules, but using the LPRINT
statement (for line printer.)

10 LPRINT "Hello There"

This will print on the printer, but
not on the screen.

4. MULTIPLE STATEMENTS ON A LINE:

More than one BASIC instruction may be
placed on one line, and always is in
fact, in advanced programs. To do
this, you separate statements with a
colon.

10 PRINT "HI":PRINT:PRINT "JOE"

This prints HI, skips a line and
prints JOE.

One exception! NOTHING may follow a
REM. Here's an okay example:

10 X = X + 1:REM increments X

Here's a NOT OKAY example:

10 REM increment X:X = X + 1

This won't work, as NOTHING past a REM
statement gets executed.

5. NEW:

The command NEW, clears out the Random
Access Memory. When you're ready to
write a program, you type NEW and hit
the RETURN key. That wipes all your
RAM memory clean. It erases any old
programs and variables, you were
using. It will not affect programs
stored on disk or tape. When you LOAD
in a program from disk (see 12.
LOADING A PROGRAM:), it automatically
clears RAM first, just as if it had a
NEW command built-in.

6. WRITING A PROGRAM:

Now we are ready to write a program.
For now, you may type in LAB 1,
EXACTLY as it appears at the end of
this lesson. After each line, hit
RETURN. BASIC will let you know
immediately if you have any errors. If
so, simply retype the line. Each new
line will REPLACE any old line, having
the same line number. Instant
correction.

7. LISTING

You can LIST your code on the screen
at any time, by typing LIST and RETURN
or L. and RETURN. Individual lines may
be listed as:

L.40

to list line 40. Ranges of lines may
be listed by:

L.10,120

to list lines 10 through 120 in a
block. You may stop and start the
lines scrolling up off your screen
during listing, by alternate presses
of CONTROL+1. This means hold down the
CONTROL key while pressing the 1 key.
Lines may be entered into programs out
of sequence. Listing will always list
then in sequence.

You can Clear your screen with
CONTROL+CLEAR. Clearing and relisting
is done every few minutes when writing
in BASIC, so you can see the lines in
sequence, and watch the program flow.

You can copy lines easily, by listing
a line, then using cursor control
arrows, placing your cursor on top of
the existing line number, changing it
and hitting RETURN. The original line,
AND the identical line with the new
number will both be present. This also
allows manual renumbering of lines in
a program.

Source code may be listed to your
printer in two ways. You may use:

LIST "P:"   or    LIST "P:",10,120

Another option is to COPY the program
from disk to the printer, by going to
DOS and selecting COPY. When asked,
copy from D1:FILENAME  to P: for the
printer, or S: for the screen or E:
for the screen also.

Printouts are very handy, as you can
quit for the night, but study the
listed printout for bugs, and areas to
improve.

8. LINE EDITING:

If you discover a boo-boo in a line,
you can edit it. Type L. followed by
the line #, or LIST followed by the
line # as:

L. 35

This will list that line 35 on your
screen. Using your control and arrow
keys, put your cursor on the line, and
retype, delete, insert (using CONTROL+
DELETE or INSERT) etc, to correct the
line. Monkey around and try it. When
you change a line, the rule is that
you must hit RETURN with the cursor IN
that line, to save your changes.
Experiment with it. It's great. SHIFT+
INSERT and SHIFT+DELETE work on entire
lines. Try them.

To get rid of a line you don't want,
simply type the number of the line
followed by RETURN. It wipes it out.
Try it. That's deleting lines.

The Atari has a screen editor, that
will let you edit any lines on the
screen. For the novice, this can get
you in trouble so fast, that you screw
up a whole screen full of lines at
once. SAVE often when editing, and
only edit one line at a time to begin.
For screen editing, you must hit
return with your cursor still in a
line to save changes.

Next week Part 3
______________________________________
Xx ZMAG 1987 REVIEWS
______________________________________
by Ron Kovacs

The following text is taken from the
Special Issue of the 1987 Zmag Index.
The Issue will be released shortly. It
was compiled by The Enchanter of the
Bunker BBS (212) 617-0153

This week, A listing of the reviews
covered last year. Title and the issue
where you can find the article is 
listed.

REVIEWS
Title                           Issue
-------------------------------------
221B Baker Street                  54
XEP80                           53,79
Alternate Reality                  60
Avatex Modem                       36
Battle of Antietam                 58
Bismark                            33
Black Cauldron                     56
Black Magic                        33
Bop'n Wrestle                      59
Borrowed Time (ST article)         58
Carina II BBS                   68,70
Computing Across America           73
Dark Lord                          60
Datatrieve                         48
Force 7                            60
Function Aid                       46
GBA Basketball                     53
Gemstone Healer                    33
Hacker                             56
Jingledisk                         81
Koronis Rift                       51
Magic Sac                          41
Mind Tuner                         33
Express                            66
Oasis BBS                          54
PC Clone                           50
PC Pursuit                         33
Print Shop Campanion               64
Qubie Modem                        60
Roadwar 2000                       33
Saracen                            33
SpartaDos Toolkit                  79
SpellBreaker                       56
Spider                             68
ST WordPerfect                     49
Star Fleet I                       33
Star Printer                       36
Super Boulder Dash                 58
Super Mario Brothers               43
Super Rat                          33
Supra 2400 Modem                   80
Sword Orcery                       33
SX212 Modem                        75
Tobruck                         33,60
Tomahawk                           60
Video Title Shop                33,60
Wargame Construction Set           33
Warship                            33
______________________________________
Xx ZMAG 1987 Columnists
______________________________________
Here is where you can find articles
written by the Staff of ZMagazine. The
following index is from the issues of
1987 and where to find them.

Title                            Issue
--------------------------------------
ADVERTISERS
===========
Midtown TV                       74-81
OASIS Software                     60
Commnet Systems                    81
Hard Disk Users Group              41

Authors Index
=============
Ron Kovacs
        41,53,57,58,60,63,66,67,70,75
Eric Plent                   47,48,51
Calamity Jane             67,70,79,82
Mike Brown             67,71,73,79,80
Bruce Kennedy                   72,80
Mr. Goodprobe    67,70,72,73,74,75,77
Leo Newman             57,63,64,65,66
______________________________________
ZMAGAZINE 88         Volume 3 Number 2
(c)1988 Syndicate Publishing Company
______________________________________




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