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Article #5 (29 is last): Newsgroups: freenet.sci.comp.atari.product.16-32bit.reviews From: aa400@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Marc A. Lombardo) Subject: GEM-View/Graphics/Public Domain Posted-By: xx004 (aa400 - Marc A. Lombardo) Reply-To: aa400@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Marc A. Lombardo) Date: Wed May 15 18:14:43 1991 GEM-View ST Report Online Magazine Written by Ed Krimen A new picture viewer came across comp.binaries.atari.st on Usenet recently. Just what we all need is another picture viewer, right? Well, GEM-View is *THE* picture viewer. Not only does it handle the mundane GIF, Degas (uncompressed and compressed), and Tiny-Compressed images, it also handles (and this from the included READ.ME file): o DF Rasterfiles (a own format) [ *.PDF ] o GIF Images [ *.GIF ] o Sun Rasterfiles [ *.SUN ] o STAD Images [ *.PAC ] o IFF Imagefiles (ONLY SOME, NOT ALL, searching for desc.) [ *.IFF ] o GEM-(X)Image Files ( *.IMG ) o GEM-Metafiles (Vector) ( *.GEM ) o Neochrome Rasterfiles ( *.NEO ) o Art-Director Rasterfiles ( *.ART ) o Degas Images ( *.P[IC] ) o Tiny-Compressed Images ( *.TN[123Y] ) o Doodle Monochrome Rasters ( *.DOO [640x...] ) o Spectrum 512 Images ( *.SPU, *.SPC ) o X Bitmap-File (a bitmap C-Source description) [ *.XBM ] There are quite a few good picture viewers for the ST, including ViewGIF 1.2, Giffer, PicSwitch, and DSlide. Each of them have unique features, but I have not seen anything so feature-packed as GEM-View. For starters, all of GEM-View's output is done in a GEM window. Since the program can be run as a program or a desk accessory, it's very versatile. When run as a desk accessory, you can have a picture in a window along with all your other open windows. When GEM-View is selected under the DESK menu on the desktop or run as a program, the first thing that appears is a small log window in the lower left portion of the screen. This non-scrollable window displays the title of the program, its version number, and author, Dieter Fiebelkorn, all in the smallest system font to fit as much info in as little space. Before you've recognized this however, a file selector has appeared so that you may select a picture to view. Once a file has been selected, it's current configuration, including original picture type, size, number of colors, is shown in the log window. By this time, GEM-View is converting the picture, if conversion is necessary, to the current screen resolution and color capabilities. If you're running GEM-View in monochrome and you've selected a color picture, it will automatically convert the picture to monochrome, including dithering and resizing if the picture is larger than your current screen size. If required, it goes through a couple of color remapping and screen compression sequences. It also tells you how long it takes to load and process the picture. The neat thing is that it actually tells you this in the log window as it's happening. Oh, and before I forget, not only does it show the info in the log window as it's doing its converting, but it does everything in the background. Yes, this program multitasks!! So, you can select a GIF picture to convert, and while it's doing that in the background, you can do other stuff, like write a review of a new program or your new unauthorized biography of Jack Tramiel. The down-side to this is that the system is slowed down considerably when it's doing the conversions. I suppose this would be a good reason to get a TT or a 68030 upgrade.
So, once the picture is finished converting, it outputs the image to a full-screen window. If the image doesn't fit on the screen, you can scroll the image using the usual scroll bars on the GEM window. Or, you can hold down the right mouse button on the image and use the mouse to scroll the picture inside the window. Some spectacular, advanced features are revealed when you hold the right-mouse button over the scroll bars. These features include saving the picture, sizing the window, clipping the picture, rotating the clip, setting the brightness, dither or halftone, and a few other things. I used GEM-View with MonSTer, which is a program that creates a 1280x960 monochrome, 1280x480 4-color, or 640x480 16-color virtual screen depending upon which ST resolution you've chose to boot in. GEM-View works perfectly with this, and I'll assume it works with the large Moniterm monitors as well the TT resolutions. When I was looking through the READ.ME file, I was expecting to find the ubiquitous shareware plea, but there wasn't one -- only Dieter's Usenet signature file. This program is easily of commercial caliber. I'd be surprised if it isn't sold by itself or at least bundled with another commercial program in the future. There are many more features in GEM-View that I haven't mentioned. If you ever view pictures on your ST, you should get a copy of this program. -- ||| Ed Krimen [email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org] ||| Video Production Major, California State University, Chico / | \ SysOp, Fuji BBS: 916-894-1261 -- Marc A. Lombardo User Address:email@example.com ~ ~ ~ /-\-/-\-/-\-/-\-/-\-/-\-/-\-/-\-/--/-\-/-\-/-\-/-\-/-\-/-\-/-\-/-\- ~ ~ ~ Atari ST, MIDI, Music ~~ ~ ~~ ~~ ~ ~~ The text for article 6 is not available.