INFO-MAC Digest V3 #49

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Oct 22, 1985, 2:29:23 PM10/22/85
From: Moderator Richard M. Alderson <INFO-MAC...@SUMEX-AIM.ARPA>

INFO-MAC Digest Tuesday, 22 Oct 1985 Volume 3 : Issue 49

Today's Topics:
Graphics Terminals for the Mac [2 messages]
"System font" question answered
Define your own page sizes
FreeTerm 1.7 & Documentation
ThunderScan software... WOW!
Apple vs. DRI
MacServe-XL/Serve [response to query]
Conversion of efs code to Aztec C
Maze War Tournament [2 messages]
The Amiga
PageMaker: a postscript (sorry..)


From: Mark Sherman <mss%dartmouth%dartmou...@CSNET-RELAY.ARPA>
Date: 20 Oct 1985 22:34-EST
Subject: Graphics Terminals for the Mac

A while ago there was a discussion about combining graphics with a terminal
program for the Mac. A long while ago (last spring to be exact), I wrote a
program, which I called QDT, that emulates an extremely dumb terminal
except when placed into "graphics" mode where it can emulate nearly every
quickdraw call. I have a Lisa Pascal source, a runnable version for use on
AppleTalk (using KSP over DDP), a serial version (very crufty--uses ROM
serial driver), and a set of PL/1 libraries for use on our main Honeywell
machines. Another person wrote a set of C libraries for using QDT from
Unix, though the C versions are a bit out of date compared to the PL/1
version. If the interest in "graphics" terminals for the Mac is still
alive, I will post this lengthy collection of material. If the interest is
more limited, I'll send copies to any individual whose asks.


Date: Tue 22 Oct 85 11:10:53-PDT
From: Richard M. Alderson <INFO-MAC...@SUMEX-AIM.ARPA>
Subject: Re: Graphics Terminals for the Mac

Please post your code. This mailing list was originally intended, in part,
for developers to do that so that good ideas could get better, and all of
us could learn. Many people have contributed their programs, but won't
send sources for one reason or another; I would like to see more of this in
the future.

Rich Alderson


Subject: "System font" question answered
Date: 16 Oct 85 16:07:29 EST (Wed)
From: "Steven B. Munson" <s...@Purdue.EDU>

We have already seen that removing the battery for a while solves the
problem with the "system font" (actually the default application font), but
Jay asked what the parameter RAM (non-volatile RAM run by the battery) had
to do with fonts. The parameter RAM contains, in addition to the stuff you
set in the Control Panel, the modem and printer port configurations, the
alarm setting, the printer connection (whether the printer is connected to
the printer or modem port), and the default application font number minus
1. The default application font is, of course, the font used in applica-
tions if they don't ask for a different one, and the Finder, after all, is
just another application. The default value is 2, which is Geneva's font
number minus 1. New York's font number is 2, and Chicago's number is 0, so
I guess your parameter RAM had a -1 in this field. It's all explained in
Inside Macintosh, starting on page 3 of the Operating System Utilities
Programmer's Guide.

Steve Munson


Date: Sat, 19 Oct 85 21:22:14 pdt
From: gould9!jo...@nosc.ARPA (Joel West @ CACI)
Subject: Define your own page sizes

Enclosed is a modified PREC resource for unusual paper sizes, and a TMPL
resource that will allow you to edit custom page sizes with ResEdit.

If you received the last Software Supplement, see "The March 1985
ImageWriter: Programmers's Notes", which explains all this. To summarize,
a resource of type PREC (with reserved ID #4) is used by the imagewriter
driver to establish the size of the form, in units of 1/120 of an inch. Up
to six types may be defined.

The format of the resource is:
INT: # defined
INT: (height,width)*6
Pascal String: (names)*6

Note that 6 pairs of integers and 6 strings are required, no matter how
many you actually declare.

The PREC resource can be pasted into your application, if it uses unusual
forms. I have not tried pasting onto the "Imagewriter" or "System" files,
and I was unable to try the Laserwriter "Page Setup" with this installed to
see if it is similarly affected.

If you take the "TMPL" resource and paste it into your ResEdit, then
ResEdit will make the PREC #4 human-readable and easy to modify. This
cannot be used with PREC resources with ID's 1,2,3, however. If you edit
this resource, you can also see another example of how to define templates
for your own resources. (If only REdit could be modified the same way, to
decompile using these templates....)

Joel West
gould9!jo...@nosc.ARPA (also joel@NOSC)

[Rich: why don't you post the hqx since it is so short? -jww]


(This file must be converted with BinHex 4.0)



Date: Sun, 13 Oct 85 23:20:37 EDT
From: Gary P Standorf <stan...@CECOM-2.ARPA>
Subject: FreeTerm 1.7 & Documentation

The following files were downloaded from Compuserve.

This is FreeTerm version 1.7. It is a public domain terminal emulator
which allows file transfers using ASCII, XMODEM, and MacBinary protocols.
Changes from version 1.6 include:

(1) It now works correctly with MacWorks 2.0 on the Lisa/Mac XL.

(2) A bug was fixed which caused XMODEM sends to fail after an XMODEM

This file contains FreeTerm 1.7 & FreeTerm Doc (documentation) which were
packed together using the PackIt utility which is available in the Info-Mac
data base. It was then hexified using BinHex 4.0. To reconstitute these
files, do the following:

1. Dehexify the file using BinHex 4.0 or later version.

2. Unpack the files using the PackIt utility.

FreeTerm Doc requires MacWrite 4.5 for reading.

Gary Standorf



Date: Sat, 19 Oct 85 14:16:55 edt
From: mtu!russell@glacier (Russell Reid)
Subject: ThunderScan software... WOW!

ThunderWare just sent me the software update for my ThunderScan, a
digitizer for the Mac that works by snapping an optical scanner into the
ImageWriter in place of the ribbon cartridge. You then can scan anything
that you can fit through your ImageWriter. With photographs and
photocopies everywhere, that means nearly anything.

The potential for something like ThunderScan is obvious. Whether it
fulfills its potential depends on lots of gritty details. It seems like a
lot of Mac software has problems there: MacPascal is slow and has serious
size limitations, MacPaint is hobbled by screen resolution, MacDraw can't
do subscripting (important for scientific stuff) and gets too slow to be
useful if graphics get complex.

I found the first version of ThunderScan to have the classic Mac blues..
it was a splendid thought, but I just could never seem to settle down and
get serious use out of it. I am happy.. no, overjoyed, thrilled! .. to
report that the update software is beyond my wildest dreams. It is, to use
a sober, reliable appropriate-for-a-review sort of word, WONDERFUL!

ThunderScan records 32 levels of gray at any of a wide range of sizes, from
400% magnification to (I think) 25% reduction. Before, during or after
scanning, you can mess with "halftoning", i.e. the mimicing of levels of
gray by dots. In the first version of the software, you could adjust the
brightness and contrast, and also something having to do with the range of
grays that I never completely understood. I found the controls to be
inadequate, (so too was my understanding of what was going on), and it
typically took a long time for me to get an image I liked. Often I just
couldn't get it right.

The update fixes these problems, and does it so cleanly and well that it
opens up whole new horizons. (gee, I really have to whack the "s" on this
terminal to make it go...) The new software allows you, among other
things, to draw any curve you want as an input-output gray map. That means
you can decide which incoming shades of gray print as which outgoing shades
in virtually any way that you want. You can take an image with a lot of
very dark shades of gray and spread them out, or one with a lot of soft
grays and add contrast, or whatever. The "or whatever" includes possibili-
ties that never occurred to me until I read the new ThunderScan manual.
(you can cause whites to print as blacks, and the reverse, or cause SOME
shades of gray to print as black or white, or other shades of gray, or
*anything you want*.

The new manual is, in a word, terrific. From the first version, I never
even understood what contrast is, in any fundamental sense. I now under-
stand it completely, and a lot more besides, and because of that understan-
ding I can really DO THINGS that I want to do. That is a lot to get from
software documentation--I am usually grateful if the stuff can at least
refrain from confusing me thoroughly on points that should be obvious.

Another enormous plus, if you have access to somebody's LaserWriter, is the
ability to print the scans in all sorts of sizes and resolutions, with the
300 dot-per-inch laserWritings being little short of breathtaking.

I heartily recommend ThunderScan. I am not sure I could have said that
about version 1, but I can about version 2. Its value increases by a
factor of 5 if you have access to a LaserWriter. It also requires some
learning, as most good tools do.

One final word. Mathematicians have a word for solutions whose grace and
insight set them a step above the problem they set out to solve. They are
"elegant" solutions, something to be valued in their own right. The
reaction I got to working with the gray-scan map in ThunderScan is just
that: gentlemen, this shows a hell of a lot of class. My hat is off to
you guys.

A not-quite-usual disclaimer: I have absolutely no specific interest in
ThunderWare, except that I plan to do absolutely wonderful things with
their scanner. But I have an enormous interest in seeing this kind of
thing become a standard for the Mac in general: it is reasonably priced
(considering it includes hardware, too), splendidly documented, and it does
the job so well that I can't even think of something I wish it did.


Russell Reid
Michigan Tech University

[This message has been archived separately as


From: crash!bweb...@SDCSVAX.ARPA
Date: Thu, 17 Oct 85 22:59:21 PDT
Subject: Apple vs. DRI

NOTE: The following message was taken from an Atari BBS and posted on BIX
(which is where I picked it up from). It clears up--a little--the
confusion surrounding the Apple-DRI affair. Note the wording carefully;
changes are not required to GEM per se, but *are* required for "GEM
Desktop" (the Mac-like user interface). Those changes are said to be
"superficial"; it will be interesting to see what they really are.

10/11/85... Following is the text of an official press release issued today
by Sam Tramiel, president of Atari Corp., concerning the recent agreement
between DRI and Apple.

SUNNYVALE, CALIFORNIA -- In an agreement between Digital Research and Apple
Computer, Digital Research has agreed to make certain superficial changes
to three of its application programs: "GEM Desktop", "GEM Paint", and "GEM
Draw". Contrary to reports, the agreement does not require changes to GEM
or to Atari Corp.'s TOS operating system.

DRI, as part of its normal development process, has prepared enhancements
to its GEM application products which further set it apart from the Apple
Macintosh. Atari is reviewing these changes. Atari promises to its
software developers and customers that Atari will make no changes that will
reduce the capabilities of the Atari ST system and software. Further,
Atari promises that any enhancements will maintain compatability with GEM
applications software on the market and in development.

Digital Research's GEM and the applications software which uses its
capabilities will continue to provide the most powerful and easy-to-use
computer interface on the market. The Atari 520ST continues to be the most
powerful computer delivering these features and will continue to do so at
an affordable price.

Hope that sheds some additional light. It does suggest the possibility of
similar actions vs. Commodore/Amiga concerning the Intuition user
interface; we'll have to wait and see.

Bruce F. Webster, Consulting Editor, BYTE Magazine
ARPA: crash!bwebster@ucsd
uucp: {ihnp4, cbosgd, sdcsvax, noscvax}!crash!bwebster
BIX: bwebster
CIS: 75166,1717
MCI: Bruce F. Webster
USPS: P.O. Box 1910, Orem, UT 84057


Date: 18 Oct 85 17:50:16 EDT
From: Seymour <JOS...@BLUE.RUTGERS.EDU>
Subject: MacServe-XL/Serve [response to query]


I suggest you look into MacServe or XL/Serve from INFOSPHERE which are two
versions of the same disk server and print server software for the
AppleTalk network. They allow many Macintoshes on an AppleTalk network to
transparently spool printout, including graphics, screen dumps and
whatever, to a shared Imagewriter or any Macintosh compatible serial
printer. The machine with the printer on it can do printing as a
background task and can still be used as a local workstation with a small
amount of performance degradation. This same server machine must have an
apple compatible hard disk attached for the prints to be spooled to in
anticipation of printing. INFOSPHERE currently supports several hard disks
including the Hyperdrive, MacBottom, Macintosh XL, Tecmar and several

Their mailing address is 4730 SW Macadam Ave. Portland, OR 97201, and they
can be reached by phone at (503) 226-3620



Date: Wed, 16 Oct 85 16:47:42 EDT
From: Gavin_Eadie%UMich-MT...@MIT-MULTICS.ARPA
Subject: Conversion of efs code to Aztec C

A group at the University of Michigan has started to convert the SUMacC
code for the Mac external file system to Aztec C. We have reached the
point where this has turned non-trivial (eg. 32-bit SUMacC constants vs
16-bit Aztec) and I'm asking the net for some input.

We are prepared to continue this project, battling through all barriers,
till we have it working. However, it would be interesting to hear if (a)
others have done this, or (b) others would like the result of our work.

I would also like to hear experiences, in general or in detail, regarding
using cross tools vs. native tools. There are good arguments for both and
I've heard many of them; I'm interested in practical, not religious,


Date: Mon, 21 Oct 85 07:58 pst
From: "pugh jon%b.mfenet"@LLL-MFE.ARPA
Subject: Maze War Tournament

Despite the response so far, we find that we need more people for the Maze
War tournement. This tourney will be arranged in a round robin with groups
of four people to a maze. The winner has the most points after a set time
limit expires. The loser is the man with the lowest score. Two losses and
you're out (which gives you more time to eat the pizza and drink the beer,
so it might not be too bad). It will be in the SF Bay area, so far we are
looking at the East Bay, somewhere between Hayward and Berkeley.

If you want a more social time with your Mac, respond to me and get

Jon Pugh


Date: Mon, 21 Oct 85 15:45:13 edt
From: David A. Levitt <lev...@MEDIA-LAB.MIT.EDU>
Subject: MazeWars tourneys

I think it would be great if there was some sort of tournament-type stuff
set up for playing MazeWars, but I hope something like that can be arranged
for the east coast as well, since I moved back there for school.

MazeWars is currently only fun for 2 or more players(the limit is 8, but
only because of the score area on the screen, it could be fixed), but I'd
like to make some version that would allow one person to sharpen his/her
skills and strategy. Apple is currently looking at realeasing the rights
to the game so that further development can be done on it, but nothing is
final yet.

Please reply with suggestions/criticisms etc, and I'll try to reply to all
Burt Sloane


Date: Mon, 21 Oct 85 08:19 pst
From: "pugh jon%b.mfenet"@LLL-MFE.ARPA
Subject: The Amiga

My roommate just bought an Amiga and now I can't get him off my Mac. You
see, I have terminal software to get to all the Amiga BBoards...


Date: Thu, 17 Oct 85 15:24:24 edt
From: mtu!russell@glacier (Russell Reid)
Subject: PageMaker: a postscript (sorry..)

I posted a review of PageMaker not too long ago. It was critical of a
numer of shortcomings of PageMaker, and undoubtedly emphasized that over
the more positive aspects. (PageMaker is a publications layout program.)
I got a letter from the folks at PageMaker, with various comments and
information. Here are a few comments on that, and perhaps I will post some
more later.

First, in my experience it is highly significant that a company show some
kind of interest in what we users think. Aldus could have been pissed off,
but they weren't. Good for them.

Second, reviews like the one I posted are necessarily slanted a bit. For
one thing, I don't feel compelled to summarize the program as much as
magazine reviewers: PageMaker, particularly, has been reviewed in a number
of magazines, and they do a pretty good job of telling you how it works,
how it compares to other software, what it costs, etc. What they don't
usually provide is fearless, I-use-this-stuff, and I-don't-need-to-soft-
pedal-anything kinds of reviews. That is what info-mac can provide. Space
is also more limited on info-mac, so you can't describe a program very
fully. In the end, you spend more time on things that don't work than on
things that do. (I always naively assume EVERYTHING should work!)

Third, any review, and especially one by people like me who use PageMaker
but are not really programmers, cannot see some tradeoffs. I took
PageMaker to task for the fact that they wrote their own print driver for
the LaserWriter, and the result has a number of shortcomings (won't print
reasonably complex MacDrawings, prints fine MacDrawings in a much clumsier-
looking way, etc.) Aldus, in reply, explained that their own driver was
necessary in order to get higher-than-Apple quality typography, get
bitmapped graphics to print right, and provide some special features like a
hairline (defined, I think, as one pixel on whatever printer you are
using). They agreed that the Aldus driver was imperfect in the areas
mentioned, but said their upgrade is fixing them. (THAT is what I like to
hear!!!) Good for them. The hairline feature is very nice, by the way.
It makes graceful-looking boxes or lines between columns of text, in places
where thicker lines would be ugly. (Plug: what would be really nice,
though, is a feature that enabled you to snap such lines dead-center
between columns without mousing it carefully.)

Fourth, you can say what you want about how much you could have charged for
a product, and how nasty the copy-protection could have been, but there is
no way on earth that copy-protection can be anything but a minus for a
user. The better and more obtrusive the protection, the worse for the
user. And high price may be justified, but you can't ask us reviewers to
LIKE it!

Finally, I have often found that vendors expect me to be a conventional
business, but I am not. My business doesn't pay for long-distance calls, I
am rarely able to wait anywhere for a "call-back", etc. I rely on the
printed documentation. (I never called Aldus, but they pointed out that I
could have.)

Ah, well. Aldus's letter to me was friendly, informative, and they seem
committed to doing good work. If you happened to read about my dealings
with Tecmar (on info-mac), you can guess I am mightily pleased by Aldus!

Russell Reid
Michigan Tech University


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