PC DISK UPDATE
NOW YOU CAN SKIP THE MENUS
Here's the latest on CMOS (COMPUTE's Menu Operating System). By popular demand, we've included page breaks in all the documentation files. If your printer doesn't print the IBM character set, you may need to install the files, load the DOC files into your word processor, and remove the skip-perforation symbols before printing.
Some of the documentation files on the March 1990 disk won't print from inside the menu on a few systems. If you have this problem, install the files and print the documentation from the DOS prompt, or print it with your word processor.
If you can't run CMOS or you don't like menus, you can install the files on the disk from the DOS prompt. Enter MENU source destination to install the files. Source is any file with a PAQ extension or any directory name. Destination is the drive, path, and directory where you want the files to reside. For example, to install TurboPaint on your hard drive, enter MENU TP C: \ COMPUTE \ OCT90 at the DOS prompt. Any destination directories that don't exist will be created for you.
If you couldn't install the files on the January or March disks, copy the MENU.EXE file from the May disk to your backup copies of the January and March disks. Use the syntax explained above to install the files.
It's Your Move
Before playing Bounce Zone (January 1990), you should decide on the input device you'll use to play the game. Your choices are the keyboard, a joystick, or a mouse.
The keyboard is the hardest to master. Even with the diagonal movement using the 1, 3, 7, and 9 keys, it's difficult to place the paddle in the correct position.
An option that's not fully explained in the article is the way to move the paddle forward using the keyboard. To move forward or backward, press the space bar in conjunction with the up- or down-arrow keys.
Although the paddle is easier to manipulate with a joystick than with the keyboard, the joystick is still not the perfect solution. The paddle tends to overshoot the ball.
If you've noticed that sometimes the paddle won't move to the left of the screen using a joystick, release the automatic centering so that the control stick doesn't return to the upright position when you let go of it. Most joysticks have this feature.
If you own a Hercules graphics system and you use an emulator such as CGA (July 1989), you may have trouble running programs that aren't compatible with your emulator. If you encounter problems running a program, check the contents of your AUTOEXEC.BAT file to see if an emulator was installed during bootup.
It's a good idea to keep the emulator resident only when it's needed by specific programs. You can create a batch file for each CGA-only game or program that marks the area of memory where the emulator resides, runs the emulator, loads the game or program, and upon exiting the program, releases the memory so that the emulator is no longer resident.
This not only provides extra memory for your applications, it also decreases the possibility of memory conflicts.
If you have the January 1990 PC Disk, you already have the weapons you need to combat this problem. Tht TSR Utilities include Mark and Release, which mark and release memory. Here's a simple batch file called BZ.BAT that demonstrates this technique using Bounce Zone.
ECHO OFF MARK CGA CGA $ BOUNCEZ RELEASE CGA
Enter BZ to run the batch file. The files MARK.COM, RELEASE. EXE, and BOUNCEZ.EXE must be available to the system when you run the batch file. (They must be in a directory listed in the PATH statement, or they must be located on the same disk or in the same directory as the batch file.)
Some readers have had trouble entering dates in TurboCALC (January 1990). There's a date function specified in the function summary in the program's documentation file TC812.DOC.
To enter today's date, type (TODAY) in the cell where you want to place the date. Be sure you include the parentheses. Then press Enter and Alt-F to format the cell. Press D, and then A, B, or C to show how you want the date to appear. Specify the beginning and ending rows that you want to contain the date format.
You can also enter dates with the DATE function (DATE(y, m, d)). Dates may range from December 31, 1899, through the year 2100. All the date functions return the Julian date.
If you want to display the day, the month, or the year, use the DAY, MONTH, or YEAR functions. See the program's documentation file TC812.DOC for more details.