Classic Computer Magazine Archive ANTIC VOL. 2, NO. 10 / JANUARY 1984


Use your printer to keep appointments



I was watching my 820 printer lazily churn out a program listing one day, when it occurred to me that, other than listing programs and printing address labels, I hadn't found much use for it. This state of affairs offended my frugal Teutonic sensibilities. After a little reflection, I realized that the four-inch-wide strips of paper that the Atari 820, 822,1020, and Alphacom printers use are about the right size for a pocket appointment calendar. I then created a perpetual calendar program,which in a burst of non-creativity I titled "Calendar."

Calendar asks you for a month (use the month's number, not its name) and a year. Once you answer, the printer will start up almost immediately, so make sure that you turn it on before you answer the prompts. If all goes well, the result will be a 9" x 4" calendar, with the dates correctly aligned with the days of the week (for example, January 1, 1984, will be a Sunday). Write your appointments in the spaces provided, then fold up the strip and put it in your wallet or purse.

As printers go, the 820 is pretty pedestrian, but it does have one rather remarkable feature: it can print sideways. This is another thing I hadn't previously found much use for, but I cured that situation by writing a second calendar program, "Sidewinder." Sidewinder isn't nearly as intelligent as Calendar, but the calendar it produces is prettier and has more of a high-tech look. I think the 820's "sideways" characters are better looking than its normal ones.

Although it was designed for 40 column printers, Calendar should run on any 80-column machine; however, because of the sideways characters, Sidewinder will only run on an 820. In either case, if you have a printer you have one less excuse for forgetting an appointment in 1984!

Download CALENDER.BAS Download