Classic Computer Magazine Archive COMPUTE! ISSUE 67 / DECEMBER 1985 / PAGE 86

MouseWrite For Apple IIe And IIc

Gregg Keizer, Assistant Book Editor

Requirements: Apple He with extended memory 80-column card and a disk drive or an Apple IIc. Mouse recommended.

Pull-down menus, overlapping windows, mouse-driven commands, and clipboards—seems like they're everywhere. The Macintosh, Amiga, Atari 520ST, and even the IBM PC with the GEM operating system take advantage of these tools, offering programs easy to learn and use. Word processing programs such as MacWrite and Microsoft's Word on the Macintosh, for instance, are built around this type of user interface. Now, with a program called MouseWrite, you can point and click your way through your prose on an Apple IIc or enhanced Apple IIe.

MouseWrite is a full-featured word processor, complete with all the standard text entry, editing, and formatting functions people have come to expect. What makes it different is not so much what it does, but how it does it. If you're able to point and click a button, you can delete text, change margins, do boldfacing or underlining, justify, and search and replace.

The program looks and works somewhat like a Macintosh application. The AppleMouse—though not required—is used to move the cursor, display menus, and select options. If you're not using a mouse, keyboard commands are available. A bar at the top of the screen contains eight menus, ranging from Windows and Page to Edit and File. Everything is within easy reach. A ruler showing margins and tabs can be displayed or hidden. Two windows can be open at the same time, letting you cut and paste sections of text from one version of a document to another. Printers can be selected and text formatted with a click.

Familiarity Breeds Content

If you've used a Macintosh word processor such as MacWrite, acclimation to MouseWrite is simple. Its operation is so comfortable that you can be up and writing within a few minutes of loading the program. Since the menus and commands are all just a click away, there's little need to pore over the manual. If you're unfamiliar with Macintosh-like programs, the documentation quickly gets you started, though many of MouseWrite's features and commands will seem intuitive. Choosing the Find menu, for instance, leads you to three choices: Find Next, Replace Then Find, and Replace All. The text you want to find and replace is simply typed in. Even file and disk management, such as formatting disks, and opening, closing, and deleting files, is done with only a simple command or two.

Other MouseWrite features include automatic page numbering, headers, footers (both of which can display the current time and date), an optional onscreen clock (which unfortunately must be reset each time the program is booted), centering and justifying text, and three spacing options. Scroll bars let you move quickly through a long document, and windows can be resized by moving the mouse pointer.

MouseWrite makes writing what it should be—fun. With virtually no commands to memorize (at least when you use the mouse), you can concentrate on the words, not how the words get into the computer.

Roger Wagner Publishing
P.O. Box 582
Santee, CA 92071