Classic Computer Magazine Archive COMPUTE! ISSUE 144 / SEPTEMBER 1992 / PAGE G40

How to Type In Gazette Programs

Each month, Gazette publishes programs for the Commodore 128 and 64. Each program is clearly marked as being written for the 128, 64, or both. Be sure to type in the correct version for your machine. All 64 programs run on the 128 in 64 mode. Be sure to read the instructions in the corresponding article. This can save time and eliminate any questions which might arise after you begin typing.

At irregular intervals, we publish two programs designed to make typing in our programs easier: The Automatic Proofreader, for BASIC programs, and a 128 and 64 version of MLX, for entering machine language programs. In order to make more room for programs, we do not print these handy utilities in every issue of the magazine. Copies of these programs are available on every Gazette Disk. If you don't have access to a disk, write us, and we'll send you free copies of both of these programs. Please enclose a stamped, self-addressed envelope. Write to Typing Aids, COMPUTE's Gazette, 324 West Wendover Avenue, Suite 200, Greensboro, North Carolina 27408.

When entering a BASIC program, be especially careful with DATA statements, as they are extremely sensitive to errors. A mistyped number in a DATA statement can cause your machine to "lock up" (you'll have no control over the computer). If this happens, the only recourse is to turn your computer off and then on, erasing what was in memory. This could cause you to lose valuable data, so be sure to save a program before you run it If your computer crashes, you can always reload the program and look for the error.

Special Characters

Most of the programs listed in each issue contain special control characters. To facilitate typing in any programs from Gazette, use the following listing conventions.

The most common type of control characters in our listings appear as words within braces: DOWN) means to press the cursor-down key; {5 SPACES) means to press the space bar five times. (RVS) means to enter Reverse mode by simultaneously pressing the Ctrl key and the 9 key.

To indicate that a key should be shifted (hold down the Shift key while pressing another key), the character is underlined. For example, A means hold down the Shift key and press A. You may see strange characters on your screen, but that's to be expected. If you find a number followed by an underlined key enclosed in braces (for example, {8 A}), type the key as many times as indicated (in our example, enter eight shifted A's).

If a key is enclosed in special brackets, [<>], hold down the Commodore key (at the lower left corner of the keyboard) and at the same time press the indicated character.

Rarely, you'll see a single letter of the alphabet enclosed in braces. This can be entered on the Commodore 64 by pressing the Ctrl key while typing the letter in braces. For example, A) means to press Ctrl-A.

The Quote Mode

You can move the cursor around the screen with the Crsr keys, but you may want to move it under program control, as in examples like (LEFT) and (HOME) in the listings. The only way the computer can tell the difference between direct and programmed cursor control is the quote mode.

Once you press the quote key, you're in quote mode. It can be confusing when you are in this mode if you mistype a character and cursor left to change it. You'll see a graphics symbol for cursor left. Use the delete key to back up and edit the line from the beginning. Type another quotation mark to get out of quote mode.

If things get too confusing, exit quote mode by pressing Return; then cursor up to the mistyped line and fix it. If the mistake involves cursor movement, however, you must press the quote key to reenter quote mode.