II Something Issue # 25

II Something Magazine

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Issue # 25
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a weekly journal devoted to the Apple II family of computers
Sunday, April 14, 1996 – issue 25 – II.Smthg.960414
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Contents
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  • About…
  • Editor’s Greeting
  • Letters
  • WebFind of the Week – Sun Remarketing
  • The Wire Service – Internet University
  • The Wire Service – KansasFest 96 Updata
  • Updata – Readership on Genie
  • Updata – Internet Email Subscriptions to II Something
  • Wish List – Audio Launcher

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About…
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As you know, Apple Computer, Inc. owns all of the Apple II computer copyrights and trademarks, including their names.

II Something is offered as freeware – copyright by Clark Hugh Stiles. Intact distribution of the entire file is acceptable using online services, including BBSes, or via user group DOMs provided there are no commercial sales. Individual articles may be reprinted in user group publications only, provided the following paragraph (except for the opening and closing quotes) is included at the beginning or end of the reprint:

“This article originally appeared in II Something, a weekly journal devoted to the Apple II family of computers, copyright by Clark Hugh Stiles. It has been reprinted by permission. All trademarked names and phrases mentioned belong to their respective owners. Send email to CHStiles@Delphi.Com or C.Stiles3@Genie.Com via the Internet, or newsletters, disks, products for review, gifts, or bribes to Clark Hugh Stiles, Box 46, Comstock Park, MI 49321-0046.”

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Editor’s Greeting
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If lost time is a sign of alien abduction, then I’ve spent more of my life on other planets than I have here. But while I’m here I still use an Apple IIgs. The aliens have been seen using replicated Mark Twains.

I’m starting to feel like Chevy Chase.
A younger and better looking version of Chevy Chase.
Much younger.

Anyway, it’s virtually mid-April 1996. I’ve been busier than a one-legged feller in an ass-kickin’ contest this week. I’m really in Rochester right now, at least in my mind. It’s been cold and rainy since I got here but we’re having a great time. Nothing bad has happened at any restaurant, which is pretty weird by itself. We’ve rented interesting videos and gone to the movies. Becky has been out and on the road much of the time lately, and I haven’t seen enough of her this trip. Dave has been pacing the floor trying to decide whether to take a job offer and quit his current employer. I think we’ll have to go to, uh, some living theater to try to relax the guy.

This week’s issue is going to be short and sweet. I’m on vacation, after all. Now, some of you in the know may view that statement with suspicion, knowing full well that the 4-7-96 issue was finished just hours ago, and the 4-21-96 issue will follow in a few hours after this. Never mind that. Next week’s issue will mark the end of the first six months! II Something will be six months old and counting. Isn’t that amazing?

I’ve got a mess of stuff to tell you, so stop reading this and get to the rest.

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Letters
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From: Ewen Wannop
Subj: RE: Thanks for the words of encouragement and…
Date: Mon, 08 Apr 1996 12:23:21 +0100
As far as the Spectrum Host project, it's based on an attempt at a TIC host that I've made several times, then never finished due to the variable limits.

My main concern is the use of the $ sign to mark variables, since someone may wish to post a message of something for sale and, well, you get the idea. The XCmd will work if it accepts the stream from the modem as well as the keyboard.
The '$' is only looked for when actually parsing script commands, so it would not normally matter if it was there in the input stream, even if this is being controlled by a script.
If you do this:
    Set Variable 0 "Clark"
    Display "The value of variable 0 is '$0'^M"
You will get this on screen:
    The value of variable 0 is 'Clark'
If variable 0 is not defined you get:
    The value of variable 0 is ''
But, try this:
    GetLine 0
    Display "$0^M"
Now enter from the keyboard:
    The value of variable 0 is '$0' 
You will see:
    The value of variable 0 is '$0'
Note the '$' is still there and no attempt has been made to parse it! The only place where this would be a problem is if you were to do an 'Expand Variable' first. Then it would attempt to parse the '$0' before display. In fact we had some strange results when working on the Expand Variable command till we understood what was actually going on.
I suppose I should have made the '$' into a changeable value, in the way that the caret and quotes can be changed. But because this might affect every XCMD already written, it is probably too late to do that now.
An HTML XCmd might be nice :)
That would just allow callers to browse through the bbs in case they have that ability (a graphical or graphics-based text browser)…
There's a thought… I had only thought of HTML as arriving from a Web system, and that would need TCP/IP and PPP, but of course anything could send HTML commands, and a BBS is just as natural a source! It would make more sense to be an actual display for this, doing what it can on the IIgs screen. It would have to miss out much of the graphics, but should be able to make some sense of the text. I shall add it to my 'long term' 'to do' list!
I'll alter my mailing list as you suggested.
Thanks for that… It will mean I can guarantee clean downloads of the BinSCII part! I should be able to get clean downloads on my system, but I do seem to miss the odd character here and there. I have never quite tracked the reason down. It is probably related to the speed of screen display as protocol downloads have no problems. I just must go through my scripts and 'Set Screen OFF' where appropriate to speed things up even further!
Regards - Ewen

MAIL> reply
Subj: RE: Thanks for the words of encouragement and…

Ewen:

That is excellent information. Now all I need to do is actually get moving and do it 🙂 The HTML XCMD would be quite handy. I suppose you’re correct about the way the GS display would have to work it for local viewing (unless using the Second Sight card?). A simulation might be necessary, or a standalone editor for HTML that simulated the results (more or less analogous to the way PubIt! and GraphicWriter (?) do the preview mode) so that included graphics would just appear as a frame, text would appear in a shrunken font of some sort, and hot buttons would be highlighted (or highlightable a la HyperStudio).

A while ago I found a mag here called MacFormat that I liked quite well when I got round to looking through it today. One thing that I wondered about (if this isn’t too silly) is whether the prices of hardware and software inthe ads reflects generally higher prices. I could look that up I suppose, but L179 for an EZ drive seems like a lot higher than our $199.95 (I just got another for ease of backup and to have a Mac volume to dump downloads and to develop the KOTOL thing). This isn’t really relevant, just a digression.

Yikes. It looks like snow again. It was up near 70 F today.

Weird.

Chs

From: IN%"s.cavanaugh1@genie.com"
Subj: latest II.Something
Date: Tue, 9 Apr 96 09:21:00 UTC 0000
Clark,
thanks for including me on your email list for II.Something. I enjoyed the latest two issues. A word about the AOL internet site…yes, you do have to use the address:
users.aol.com/username
or
members.aol.com/username
You shouldn't have any problem reaching the Apple Blossom site, unless traffic happens to be especially heavy. In the last week I have added two pages describing how to do trm pwr modifications to the Apple High Speed SCSI card, along with uploading the Dialog Management Program reviewed in the latest Apple Blossom. I also got up part of the price list for B & R Computers, which is now online on AOL. I'm also going to try to make GenieLamp A2 available there, but I uploaded the wrong (no linefeed) version yesterday…tonight I'll fix that.
Also, if you want a Web page, I could put it up for you. Obviously it wouldn't be everything you are looking for (I don't have that much Web space left!) but it could at least tell about II.Something and give the email address for subscribing. If you are interested (free--a thanks for your frequent, kind words about Blossom) just send me the text you'd like put up and I'll code it and put it up.
Steve

MAIL> reply
To: IN%”s.cavanaugh1@genie.com”
Subj: RE: latest II.Something

Steve:

Thanks for your extremely kind offer for some webpage space. This is a very nice gesture. I’m sure I can write a reasonable amount of text (so you won’t be swamped with my usual verbosity). I may try the HTML editor (it’s in the form of a HCGS stack) and send both versions just for laughs, and to save you work (provided it doesn’t come out all weird). Should I do some sort of small GIF (perhaps a crop of the Imagine.Nation desktopINI?)?

Not only do I plan to keep visiting and mentioning TAB, I may even get around to subscribing (procrastination gets easier the more times you do it).

First off, I need to write three issues this weekend to get caught up. Yipes.

Thanks again,

Chs

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WebFind of the Week – Sun Remarketing
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It’s true that we should frequent and recommend Alltech and other longtime vendors of Apple II equipment, repair, and add-ons. I do so now. But the Webfind is Sun Remarketing because it has a whole mess of subpages devoted to different aspects of Apple II computing, and after all, this is WebFind of the Week.

One thing is certain – the prices at Sun Remarketing have not improved much over the years. Of course, they do offer a warranty of some kind on the reconditioned stuff that they sell, but overall prices are better in the bargain section of the local classifieds. Lots of people sell Apple II computers and put far too high a price on them, so they get few offers, and it is fairly easy to buy whole systems fairly cheap.

When you’re done looking at the paper, try out some of these web pages:

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The Wire Service – Internet University
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http://www.internetuniv.com/

This Internet University was designed to interest college students and others of that age. It is organized into twelve departments, and has some interesting features such as What’s New?, iPizza, Net Vote 96, Fusion Box, Best Student Homepage, Link to the Beach (contest for a free trip), and Give Us a Grade (win an IU t-shirt). Actually, I’ve only summarized what I’ve read about this site. I haven’t gone here yet.

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The Wire Service – KansasFest 96 Updata
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I tried last week’s URL for KansasFest and couldn’t get in, so I went to GS Worldview and used the link there. It worked, and this is what I’ve found out:

http://www.primenet.com/~adams/kfest.html

[ begin quote ]

Welcome to The KFest 1996 Information Page


The tradition of KFest lives on and flourishes!

KFest is back again! With two Extra Nights!!!!!

This summer, in Kansas City, Missouri, you can once again:

  • spend 3 days and 4 nights guided by Dante Alighieri on a trip through the dormitories of Avila College
  • meet friends old and new
  • learn about how to get the most out of your computer and peripherals
  • see demonstrations of new products
  • meet the celebrities of our little world
  • experience the InterNet and all that it has to offer to us and our computers
  • take advantage of special KFest ’96 offers from Apple II and Macintosh vendors
  • and, of course, stay up all night, shoot pool, and foment insurrection, if you want to 🙂

KFest ’96 will again be held on the campus of Avila College in Kansas City, Missouri. It will take place from July 17-21, 1996. The cost will be only $325, which includes use of a double room in the Avila College dorms and meals! (If you wish to stay at one of the many hotels or motels near the college then the cost is $225, but you would, of course, have to find and pay for your own room).

If you have been thinking about attending KFest ’96. now is the time to sign up. The registration fee will be going up on May 19th to $375 for the dormitory and conference, and $275 for the conference only. The last date pre-registrations will be accepted is July 13th.

KFest this year is being sponsored by Kellers’ Auto Electric, Inc. You can send your completed registration forms to:

  KFest96
     c/o Kellers
     P O Box 391
     Brielle, NJ   08730

If you have questions about KFest, or wish to make suggestions, you can find answers via the InterNet. Just send an email message to:

  Tim Kellers timothyK@injersey.com or
  PPC.help@genie.com
  Cindy Adams Cindy.a@genie.com  or adams@primenet.com

KFest ’96 — Be There, or be an Octal Fractal!!!

  • Please make checks payable to: Kellers’ / Kfest ’96

Credit Card registration is also available. Just call Kellers’ Auto Electric, Inc with your VISA, MasterCard or American Express number at (908)

775-0371, Mon-Fri 8:00AM-5:00PM Eastern Time. If you prefer, you can FAX your registration with VISA or MasterCard account number and expiration date to: (908) 223-0678 Mon-Fri 8:00AM-5:00PM Eastern Time.

If you prefer registering by Email, and are using a VISA, MasterCard, or American Express for payment, you can send the completed registration form via InterNet Email to:

 timothyK@injersey.com

adams@primenet.com
last updated 3/1/96

[ end quote ]

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Updata – Readership on Genie
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I can see that my tardiness has had an impact on the number of downloads. Some of the difference may also be due to the Internet subscription list. I may have to stop doing that for Genie and Delphi users who receive the feed on either of those systems.

What’s your reaction to this idea? If you get Genie Lite the email is free while download time is not. If you still go into the A2 area, that’s good – we want them to be around for a good while yet, and whether they stay or not may depend on how much activity is registered. I don’t want II Something to make a contribution to the decline of A2 and PAUG, no matter how small that contribution may be.

Pretty soon the A2 area could be one of the largest on Genie, because Genie is fairly small, has a very active A2 management, and users of other CPUs may be signing on to straight Internet services or one of Genie’s larger competitors. In other words, Genie may become Genie.SHK, and no one wants that.

If you notice that you get two copies of anything I send, let me know right away so I can knock it off. Many subscribers seem to have two, three, or more email accounts. That seems like a lot of work to keep after. I get my mail once a week on average, sometimes twice if I’m online a lot over a weekend, and have two email accounts.

Some of my email is to myself (when I find things that look interesting I forward them to my Genie email account from Delphi’s Lynx so I can peruse them as uninterrupted text offline). Here’s the latest report:

No. File Name Type Address YYMMDD Bytes Access Lib

25910 IIS.951029.BXY X C.STILES3 951022 12160 152 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 01 - Oct 29 95
25997 IIS.951105.BXY X C.STILES3 951104 16000 148 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 02 - Nov 05 95
26029 IIS.951112.BXY X C.STILES3 951113 37120 97 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 03 - Nov 12 95
26059 IIS.951119.BXY X C.STILES3 951119 21504 88 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 04 - Nov 19 95
26098 IIS.951126.BXY X C.STILES3 951127 91136 97 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 05 - Nov 26 95
26099 IIS.YNOPSIS.BXY X C.STILES3 951127 3712 59 53
Desc: II Something - Issues 1-5 - Contents
26108 IIS.951203.BXY X C.STILES3 951203 15232 61 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 06 - Dec 03 95
26135 IIS.951210.BXY X C.STILES3 951209 17920 81 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 07 - Dec 10 95
26167 IIS.951217.BXY X C.STILES3 951217 20736 81 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 08 - Dec 17 95
26237 IIS.951224.BXY X C.STILES3 951224 28928 80 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 09 - Dec 24 95
26296 IIS.951231.BXY X C.STILES3 951231 17920 80 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 10 - Dec 31 95
26338 IIS.960107.BXY X C.STILES3 960107 22144 84 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 11 - Jan 07 96
26393 IIS.960114.BXY X C.STILES3 960113 16640 82 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 12 - Jan 14 96
26446 IIS.960121.BXY X C.STILES3 960121 24960 80 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 13 - Jan 21 96
26450 IIS.960128.BXY X C.STILES3 960127 27904 87 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 14 - Jan 28 96
26477 IIS.960204.BXY X C.STILES3 960204 24532 69 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 15 - Feb 04 96
26535 IIS.960211.BXY X C.STILES3 960211 38656 77 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 16 - Feb 11 96
26590 IIS.960218.BXY X C.STILES3 960218 19840 66 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 17 - Feb 18 96
26652 IIS.960225.BXY X C.STILES3 960225 25984 75 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 18 - Feb 25 96
26765 IIS.960303.BXY X C.STILES3 960310 27904 62 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 19 - Mar 03 96
26837 WLLPPR1.BXY X C.STILES3 960317 117248 29 6
Desc: Desktop Inits from II Something…
26848 IIS.960310.BXY X C.STILES3 960318 30464 59 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 20 - Mar 10 96
26878 IIS.960317.BXY X C.STILES3 960323 13696 54 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 21 - Mar 17 96
26982 IIS.960324.BXY X C.STILES3 960407 22656 34 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 22 - Mar 22 96
26983 IIS.960331.BXY X C.STILES3 960407 16000 34 53
Desc: II Something - Issue 23 - Mar 31 96

[ the following may also be of interest to you. Thanks Tony! ]

18157 CTERM.BXY X C.STILES3 920329 23680 232 27
Desc: ANSI S16 telecom for ROM 01
25816 HTMLEDIT.BXY X C.STILES3 951008 82688 102 30
Desc: HCGS stack to edit HTML screens…
10445 INFO.BXY X C.STILES3 900311 12600 37 40
Desc: INFO command with typelist, no bugs
24828 ULTRAB.208.BXY X C.STILES3 950430 31104 125 6
Desc: UltraBlank screen blanker v2.08

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Updata – Internet Email Subscriptions to II Something
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For more information, check out “Updata – Readership on Genie”. I’ll still be glad to add, hate to expatriate. I’ll accept Internet subscribers until I let you know otherwise. Ironically, I would do so via the same mailing list.

Steve Cavanaugh of The Apple Blossom may have some web space with my name on it over on AOL. It will just consist of some information about II Something, about its editor, all fancied up with HTML, and possibly a GIF. I’m jazzed about this, but it won’t be before May 1996. I’ll have to come up with some A) new files or B) some old but doctored up bits of files from back issues, sort of a “best of” sampler type of affair. The Glossary might be fun to include…

Never fear! II Something won’t stop coming via Internet subscription due to the existence of a home page. II Something Infinitum, that’s what I say…

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Wish List – Audio Launcher
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Somewhere along the line I’ve seen a FEXt or INIt that automatically opens any floppy when it’s inserted during a Finder session. Not only is that a pretty good idea, it would be excellent as one of the user preferences in the Finder itself. In fact, it would (ideally) treat all removable format drives in this manner, whether floppy, Zip, Syquest, or CD-ROM.

This brings us to this week’s Wish – an auto-open system extension of some kind that automatically recognizes and launches (plays, in this case) any audio CD that is inserted into any online CD-ROM drive, regardless of whether the user is in the Finder – i.e., it should recognize and play the CDs in any GS/OS (and ideally also any ProDOS) application.

This isn’t exactly the most spectacularly imaginative Wish you’ve seen in the virtual pages of II Something, but I think you’ll agree that would be very nice to have. Perhaps it would make a good partner to the improved CDRemote Wish of a few months ago…

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II Infinitum

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About the Author

Clark Hugh Stiles

Welcome to II Something. It’s October 1995 and I’m still using an Apple IIgs. What am I missing? The newest machines use CRT screens (preferred, even with laptops except when actually used on the lap), keyboards, mice, and sound to implement an interface with the user. Hard drives are used for primary storage and boot volumes, while CD-ROMs are used to hold larger data files, and floppy and tape drives are used for current data and backup for the hard drives. Modems are used for communication with mainframes. These features have not changed in years; most of them have not changed in decade.