Designer LabelsPrint Shop Graphics get a new use
Transfer nearly any Print Shop image to stick-on labels along with your own text. To use this BASIC program, you need an 8-bit Atari with minimum 48K memory, disk drive, printer that's compatible with Epson, Star or Prowriter and some Print Shop files. You can use any Print Shop image except those on your original Print Shop disk. (These won't work because they use a different data format.)
My five-year-old daughter bet me I couldn't make my Atari 800 produce fancy name stickers for her and her sisters. "They must have pictures," she said. I'm no artist, so spending several evenings designing bit-mapped graphics was not my idea of fun.
But why not use Broderbund's Print Shop graphics? With a virtually unlimited selection of images, at least one of them had to be acceptable to my juvenile taskmaster.
The resulting program is Designer Labels, which lets you create and print your own customized Print Shop labels or stickers-each one with a graphic image and as many as seven lines of text in a standard or redefined font.
Designer Labels will work with any image from the Print Shop Graphics Library disks. You may also use pictures created with KoalaPad or Micro-Painter and converted into Print Shop format with Graphic Shop (The Catalog).
Uses for Designer Labels include return address labels
for local businesses, bookplates, canning labels, emergency telephone number
stickers, and, of course, hundreds of children's name stickers-all brightly
colored and stuck on most walls in my house.
Type in Listing 1, PSLABELS.BAS, check it with TYPO II and SAVE it to disk before you RUN it. Designer labels will not work when used with "Mini-DOS" utilities, such as DISKIO (Antic, January 1985) and DISKIO Plus (Antic, December 1985).
When you RUN Designer Labels, the title screen is displayed for about 40 seconds while the machine language routines are installed and the buffer strings are initialized. You are then prompted to select a printer type. (Star SG10 owners should choose "Gemini.")
Let's create a test label to see how the program works. You begin with a blank label image shown at the top of the screen. The edit menu has five choices:
1. Get a NEW GRAPHIC image
2. ENTER TEXT for the label
3. CHANGE TEXT font
4. PRINT LABELS
5. EXIT from program
Press [OPTION] to highlight NEW GRAPHIC, then press [START]. At the prompt, insert into drive 1 a Print Shop Graphics Library (or compatible) disk. Type in the name of the graphic-for example, KNIGHT from the Print Shop Graphics Library I. Press [START] again and the icon is displayed in the label image area. If the icon is not on the disk, a "Not Found" message is printed and you can try again.
To add text, select ENTER TEXT from the edit menu and type the text as you want it to appear on the label. This is a "what you see is what you get" operation. Upper and lower case letters, numbers, punctuation signs and graphic symbols are all valid text characters. Hold down [CONTROL] and use the arrow keys to move the cursor within the text input box.
Press [TAB] to center the current text line in the box. [CLEAR] will blank the current text line. [DELETE] gets rid of the last text character entered. When you're satisfied with the text layout, press [ESC]. This starts a machine language routine that translates the characters into the appropriate bit maps and displays them in the Graphics 8 label image.
DEFINE YOUR OWN
The label is almost done, but we can add another touch. If you have a disk with redefined character fonts such as Envision (The Catalog), you can use it with Designer Labels. The font files must have .FNT as the filename extension. Select the NEW FONT option, insert the disk containing the fonts and type the file name (only the first eight characters-the .FNT will be appended automatically). If you don't want a new font, the default is the internal ROM character set. This set can also be accessed by entering INTERNAL as the new font file name.
The last step is to print your creation. Select PRINT
LABELS, make sure your printer is on, and insert the label forms into the
printer. The program spacing is set for a standard lx 3-1/2 inch label
size (about $7 for a box of 1,000). Enter the number of labels to print
(maximum of 99) and press [START] to begin.
KoalaPad and Micro-
Illustrator graphics onto
standard 1x3 - 1/2 inch
labels-and spice them
up with any character
font you like
You'll probably need to play with the print head positioning so that the labels have proper spacing. If you print a series of different labels, make sure to readjust the print-head for each set or the spacing may be incorrect. My Prowriter requires about 14 minutes to print 99 labels.
All done? Now you can EXIT PROGRAM from the edit menu to return to BASIC, or go on to create some more new custom labels.
PRINT SHOP LIBRARY
Volumes I, II, III
17 Paul Drive
San Rafael, CA 94903
The two previous Antic articles by DuPont research chemist James Pierson-Perry of Elkton, Maryland have been a lot more science-oriented than this one. We published his Molecular Weight Calculator in May 1986 and Response Surface Mapping in December 1986.