Graphics programs for the IBM PC. (book reviews) Susan Glinert-Cole.
Graphic Programs for the IBM PC
A bit more information, but still pretty drab, is Graphics Programs for the IBM PC by Robert Traister from TAB Books. The first chapter is devoted to an overvies of the PC, including warranty and maintenance information. I tend to think that anyone who would be thinking of buying a book on IBM PC graphics would probably already own a machine, or at least have seen one, and I question the wisdom of including a fuzzy black and white photo of the system unit in a book supposedly devoted to pretty pictures. The second chapter is a slim discussion of Basic; it is actually more of a glossary-type summary of commands. The explanations are pretty good, but there is more information in the Basic manual, so why bother? Chapter 3 starts off talking about selecting a color graphics monitor and how to install it and gives a brief overview of the different types of graphics available in the computer. This chapter is rehashed in Chapter 4, in which he discourses further about color monitors: "Upon uncrating the Amdek monitor, I was immediately struck by the size of the device.' (I would have written that "Zounds! What a Monolith!' but that is, of course, a difference in style.)
It isn't until chapter 5 (mind you, there are only eight chapters in the book) that he starts talking about graphics. The chapters cover text graphics, "high-resolution' color graphics, animation and printer graphics. Most of us will agree that the color graphics capabilities of the IBM are actually applied in medium-resolution mode, unless you want to count the fancy trick of stuffing a color for the hi-res mode; this bit of inaccuracy might wash in the text, but not in a chapter heading for Heaven's sake.
Most of the book presents short programs, accompanied by a verbose running commentary on how the programs do their little pixellacious thing. The printer graphics chapter is devoted to a slightly modified version of a screen dump program that appeared in this column a while back, with the major part of the text devoted to recounting conversations with the original author. (He said . . . I said . . . Then he said . . . Then I said . . .) There are several attractive color photos and a good glossary in the back, but I don't think you'll learn much about graphics from this book.
Review Grade: C+