Classic Computer Magazine Archive COMPUTE! ISSUE 1 / FALL 1979 / PAGE 19


programmed by Mike Richter
marked by
3400 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90010

This is a very good word processor. It does what you need in ordinary use, and doesn't subject you to learning special commands to use it. It works with either OLD or NEW PETs and even has a special version for use with the AXIOM printer. Another version is for use with any RS232 printer via an RS232 interface. Text is stored on cassette. A minimal system for its use would be an 8K PET with 1 cassette unit. Since it can print your finished text either on the screen or printer, the printer is optional. Of course you will probably want your text printed on hard copy, but it is possible to put together your text, save it on tape, and later print it onto paper at your friend's house, local dealer, or just send it via mail as a letter on tape.

This word processor has several modes and for your convenience displays a menu of your choices. You choose from:

Edit the text

Input from tape

Output to tape

Print the output

Read to screen

Write something new

Simply decide what you wish to do and hit the key matching the first letter of that choice (E for Edit the text).

WRITE SOMETHING NEW. All text presently in memory is erased when you enter this mode (To modify your present text you would enter EDIT mode). Your keyboard now acts like a smart typewriter (shift for upper case). You do not have to hit return after each line or sentence. As a matter of fact, the return key is ignored. Simply type your text as a continuous string. Use the up arrow key to separate paragraphs. Paragraphs are automatically indented as you specify when in PRINT mode. To get an extra blank line in between paragraphs simply type two up arrows consecutively. The delete key works as usual allowing you to erase your typing errors as you go. Hit the backslash key to signify the end of input. You will then be presented with the menu of choices again.

EDIT THE TEXT. Editing the text is performed in a manner requiring little effort on your part. There are no fancy commands to learn. Text is displayed on the screen in blocks of about 4 lines. The cursor is moved with the cursor keys. Place the cursor over a character. Now hit delete and it is deleted, and the rest of text in the block is moved over 1 to the left to fill the "hole." To insert something simply hit the up arrow key. The character where the cursor was is lit up to remind you where you are inserting into. A new cursor is now below the block of text. You simply type in what you wish to insert and end with the backslash key. The character lit up is then replaced with the string you just typed for the insert

PRINT THE OUTPUT. Printing your text is very easy. All you need to do is answer these simple questions:


You may type in any digit from 0 to 9. Each paragraph will be indented this many spaces. You do not have to hit return after your choice. New paragraphs are identified in your text by the up arrow.


Hit S and the text will be printed onto your screen. Hit P and it will print onto your printer (device #5— if yours is a different device you must change the basic program in two lines).


Hit Y and your output will be double spaced. Hit N and your output will be single spaced.


Now you will be setting your margins. It will set right and left margins so as to fit the number of characters in each line on the page with even margins on both sides (centered on the page).

If you chose to print to the screen it will also ask you:


While printing on the screen you must remember you will only be able to view 25 lines at a time. This question allows you to set how many lines to print on the screen before pausing to allow you to read them. After printing the number of lines you specify, it will print a blank line and then print the message "KEY SPACE TO CONTINUE" in reverse field. This is followed by a blank line. Thus the maximum number of lines viewable on one screen is 22 (39 characters per line).

Once you have answered these questions it prints your text. That is all there is to it. When it is done, it once again displays the menu of choices on the screen for you.

READ TO SCREEN. This is an easy way to see your text without having to answer the questions asked in the PRINT mode. It will print 20 lines per screen, 39 characters per line, single spaced, with a tab of 5. This is probably what you would choose anyway. If you wish something else simply use the PRINT mode. When all text has been displayed, you once again are returned to the menu.

OUTPUT TO TAPE. One of the major benefits of a word processor is the ability to save your text on tape (or disk) for use later without having to key it all in again. Choose this option and save your text on tape using cassette unit #1. When through saving the text you are returned to the menu again. This word processor gives you an option I have not often seen elsewhere. When in OUTPUT TO TAPE mode it first asks you what the file's name is. Thus you can label your text files on tape. But then it asks you:


If you hit N it simply saves your text on tape. But if you hit Y it will first save the Word Processor program and immediately after it save your text. Thus each of your text files can be on tape with the program that will use them. This is very handy option.

INPUT FROM TAPE. Hit I to choose this option from the menu. It will then prompt you to PRESS PLAY ON TAPE #1. Simply put your text data tape in tape #1 and press PLAY and it will be loaded in. This program is nice enough to tell you what text file you are loading in by printing the file's name on the screen after it reads the header.

So here is a very easy to use word processor that does a lot. Recommended for its simplicity and usefulness.