Author Topic: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action  (Read 8791 times)

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Offline AMSDOS

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Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« on: 12:22, 03 October 10 »
I noticed not much has been happening with the Type-Ins from Amstrad Action since I submitted the Type-Ins for AA17, which was back in 2008. Anyway I've been doing the Type-Ins from AA16, unfortunately I thought I had them all done, when I discovered there was 5 pages of Type-Ins from that Issue (as opposed to the 2 I had done).
 
I've completed:
 
 
  • Fast Basic double-height
  • Calendar and
  • Snowstorm
  Unfortunately it wasn't easy typing those programs in (I'm working on the AA Scans from the CPC Oxygen website), and had to debug Fast Basic double-height because the print AA used for those programs during that period is terrible!  ???  Fortunately the Double-Height Character generator from AA17 solve what I had wrong. I've got the Calendar working really good for the screen, on the printer though I'm not sure if it's a fault from the program or if it's the Emulator talking to the Printer which isn't aligning up the text properly. The program itself uses the same routine for the screen printing as well as the printer (by assigning a variable alongside the print which represents the value for the screen or printer), I'm using Winape. This issue of AA also features another printing utility with Shady Dump. Can someone let me know how accurate the Winape Print is please?
 
Other programs from this issue include:
 
  • Artist
  • Wandering through space
  • Pyramid
  • Shady Dump
  • Screen squash
  Might do the Artist next since appears to be the biggest of those programs! I'll attach what I've currently done from AA16. And on the Disk Image I've also included the opening Introductions which AA made for those programs.
* Using the old Amstrad Languages :D   * with the Firmware :P
* I also like to problem solve code in BASIC :)   * And type-in Type-Ins! :D

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Offline betpet

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #1 on: 13:32, 08 October 10 »
Unfortunately it wasn't easy typing those programs in (I'm working on the AA Scans from the CPC Oxygen website), and had to debug Fast Basic double-height because the print AA used for those programs during that period is terrible!  ???

I agree.  I used to type in all capitals because I couldn't always tell if it was a 1 or I, O or 0, or even 8 and B in places.  No wonder I had such a hard time debugging.

Is there a particular issue or two you want typed up?  I'm up for a bash :)
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Offline AMSDOS

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #2 on: 13:57, 08 October 10 »
betpet wrote:

I agree.  I used to type in all capitals because I couldn't always tell if it was a 1 or I, O or 0, or even 8 and B in places.  No wonder I had such a hard time debugging.

Is there a particular issue or two you want typed up?  I'm up for a bash :)
 
Well this webpage shows what's missing - Typeins from Issue 5-15 aren't currently being worked on. I'm working on Typeins from Issue 16. At the moment that webpage is only up to Issue 24, so anything between Issue 18 and 24 isn't being worked on.
 
I've got most of the programs from Issue 16 working, but now I've got this horrible Machine Code program which I cannot seem to find the bug. I think the problem is like what you said - "B" could be an "8", machine code data lines don't use "l" or "i" because their Hexadeciminal opcodes ("0-9" and "A" to "F"), though it's annoying because I was one digit off the correct checksum code and haven't been able to track it down!  >:(  I've disassembled the program and found one error with it, though haven't been able to track down what the others could be (because it still doesn't add up properly with the checksums!). Even more annoying because it doesn't tell you which line the fault is.
 
What I found to be easier was to type in the program in Winape, and have the Type in onscreen and blowup the picture which makes it a bit easier to read and work out what's what, but beware the typeins with machine code routines in them cause you'll be pulling your hair out!
* Using the old Amstrad Languages :D   * with the Firmware :P
* I also like to problem solve code in BASIC :)   * And type-in Type-Ins! :D

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Offline betpet

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #3 on: 10:38, 09 October 10 »
I know what you mean.  I've been typoing in Machine code apps from Computing with the Amstrad recently in an attempt to learn Z80 coding.  It brought back memories of my struggles with the font in the magazines.  I'll have a look next week and knock a few in. :)
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Offline Gryzor

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #4 on: 10:52, 11 October 10 »
Will you be uploading these to the wiki?

Offline AMSDOS

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #5 on: 11:08, 11 October 10 »
Gryzor wrote:

Will you be uploading these to the wiki?

That's the general plan!  ;D  I'm just having so much trouble getting the last one correct from AA16 that it's a nuisance!  :(  Of course there's quite a few Screen Squashers available for the CPC and this is another one to add to that list, though I just felt excluding Typeins isn't good practice (even though I never used to type in every listing from each issue).
* Using the old Amstrad Languages :D   * with the Firmware :P
* I also like to problem solve code in BASIC :)   * And type-in Type-Ins! :D

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Offline betpet

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #6 on: 15:17, 11 October 10 »
Ok, I need a link to the scans for those type-ins before I can type any in! :)
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Offline AMSDOS

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #7 on: 10:54, 12 October 10 »
Their on CPC Oxygen Webasite - link here.
 
You'll need to click the issue you want, and then the Contents page can be used to skip to the Type Ins scan.
* Using the old Amstrad Languages :D   * with the Firmware :P
* I also like to problem solve code in BASIC :)   * And type-in Type-Ins! :D

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Offline betpet

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #8 on: 12:56, 12 October 10 »
Their on CPC Oxygen Webasite - link here.
 
You'll need to click the issue you want, and then the Contents page can be used to skip to the Type Ins scan.

Excellent!  I'll get typing when I get 5 minute to myself :)
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Offline Gryzor

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #9 on: 11:54, 18 October 10 »
I have typed in several programs during the past few years - always quite rewarding... :)

Offline AMSDOS

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #10 on: 14:23, 18 October 10 »
Gryzor wrote:

I have typed in several programs during the past few years - always quite rewarding... :)

I dare say that won't include the Screen Squash program from AA16. If you want to learn all about Checksums, Disassemblers & Love a challenging Typein to code in, I can definitely recommend that one!  ;)
 
What would be your favourite Typein of all time?
 
I collected a whole heap of Amstrad Actions - from AA44 til when the magazine closed it's doors, though because Australia were months behind the UK, the last Issue for me was 115, but I think it was the Issue with Fantasy World Dizzy on the Covertape which had the last lot of Typeins (Issue 108?). I remember David Hall having a whopping Space Storm 3 in one of those last issues and the Halloween which was with it was quite good too. Someone also did a BASIC platform game in the following issue I think - which was also quite good, nothing fancy, though just good clean fun. Games I perhaps had the most fun with, AA had the good one here and there. Didn't really know much until I brought a CPC6128 which came with a heap of Computing with the Amstrad Mags. Those programs blew your normal stuff again, probably the inspiration for people like David Hall & Sean McManus to come out and produce some nice looking programs!  ;D 
* Using the old Amstrad Languages :D   * with the Firmware :P
* I also like to problem solve code in BASIC :)   * And type-in Type-Ins! :D

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Offline Nich

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #11 on: 23:31, 18 October 10 »
That's the general plan!  ;D  I'm just having so much trouble getting the last one correct from AA16 that it's a nuisance!  :(  Of course there's quite a few Screen Squashers available for the CPC and this is another one to add to that list, though I just felt excluding Typeins isn't good practice (even though I never used to type in every listing from each issue).
I have been typing a few listings from issues 5-7 of Amstrad Action and I am currently working on issue 8. However, I think the formatting of the AA Type Ins entry needs to be improved, and I also have some other questions and suggestions:

  • Should the current screenshot images be replaced with a gallery-style table, as used in some entries for commercial games (see the entry for Orion Prime for an example)? The current screenshots are too large and I am unable to scroll the page to the right using Firefox!
  • Should the instructions for each type-in be bundled with the DSK image, or is it preferable for them to be downloaded separately? (The instructions would be too long to include in the main AA Type Ins entry; we would have to split the page and create new entries for each issue.)
  • Do we continue to name the ZIP files as AA_0xx_-_Listings.zip? I prefer something like AA0xx_Type-Ins.zip. Is it possible to rename files once they are uploaded to the wiki?

Offline AMSDOS

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #12 on: 03:29, 19 October 10 »
I agree about the screenshots (given I uploaded the Screenshots for the AA17 Type-ins), though I feel they should be completely removed. The Orion Prime entry is a nice example, though I'm also concerned about how much editing was involved to get it looking like that and given that the entry for the Type-ins page would be subjected to future updates, the easiest approach seems like the best approach. Personally I prefer the approach I made on my Turbo Pascal Website, I did have to go to a bit of trouble initially to setup tables as such, but once their in place, adding additional stuff to the site isn't a problem.
 
I like the idea of the instructions being on the Disk Image, I only wish I knew how I could get Protext to save straight out ASCII rather than Formatting it's own Gibberish on top of it, because of that I've been using the Turbo Pascal editor!  ;)   Once it's on a Disc the Instructions can be Printed or Displayed, I have a simple ASCII viewer program somewhere (not sure if it can dump to printer, though with some simple modifications it can cater for both).
 
Not sure how renaming the files works, from memory I think I had to do just that, or perhaps it's a question of Deleting the Old File from the Wiki, renaming it on your computer and uploading it again.
* Using the old Amstrad Languages :D   * with the Firmware :P
* I also like to problem solve code in BASIC :)   * And type-in Type-Ins! :D

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Offline redbox

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #13 on: 11:56, 19 October 10 »
I personally like the screenshots on the wiki type-ins pages as I can quickly have a look and see from them which ones I remember.

I doubt I would trawl through loads of DSKs and run each one to see if I know it.

Offline Nich

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #14 on: 21:39, 19 October 10 »
I agree about the screenshots (given I uploaded the Screenshots for the AA17 Type-ins), though I feel they should be completely removed. The Orion Prime entry is a nice example, though I'm also concerned about how much editing was involved to get it looking like that and given that the entry for the Type-ins page would be subjected to future updates, the easiest approach seems like the best approach. Personally I prefer the approach I made on my Turbo Pascal Website, I did have to go to a bit of trouble initially to setup tables as such, but once their in place, adding additional stuff to the site isn't a problem.
I don't feel that they should be removed, for the same reasons that redbox has outlined. I just feel that they should be smaller!

It's really not that hard to create the gallery-style table; you can just use MediaWiki's built-in <gallery> tag. Look at the source for the Orion Prime entry, for example.

Quote
I like the idea of the instructions being on the Disk Image, I only wish I knew how I could get Protext to save straight out ASCII rather than Formatting it's own Gibberish on top of it, because of that I've been using the Turbo Pascal editor!  ;)
Typing PROG at the Protext prompt switches it to "program mode". That should save the file as ASCII - although I think that any strange formatting characters used in "document mode" will remain. You may be able to write your own program to filter them out, though.

Quote
Not sure how renaming the files works, from memory I think I had to do just that, or perhaps it's a question of Deleting the Old File from the Wiki, renaming it on your computer and uploading it again.
I think deleting uploaded files is only possible by a select group of administrators - and I'm not sure who they are, or how to request deletion of a file should I wish to do so in the future! ???

Offline Gryzor

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #15 on: 09:31, 20 October 10 »
I don't feel that they should be removed, for the same reasons that redbox has outlined. I just feel that they should be smaller!

I totally agree that they shouldn't be removed; smaller is easy, you just use the thumbnail syntax...

Offline AMSDOS

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #16 on: 13:17, 20 October 10 »
It's up to the administrator, moderator, God on how to run the Typeins page (Not Me!!  :( ). I'm only trying to get something onsite with the code and the Instructions for people to use.  :P 
 
I personally used to love typing in a program without any screenshots cause that was part of the fun of typing it in, in the first place! Surely nobody is interesed in a graphical demo once an Animated GIF is produced of it or a simple PNG, which kind of defeats the purpose of having Type-ins!
* Using the old Amstrad Languages :D   * with the Firmware :P
* I also like to problem solve code in BASIC :)   * And type-in Type-Ins! :D

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Offline Gryzor

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #17 on: 08:01, 21 October 10 »
I don't think so - half of the fun (if not all of it) is actually typing it in, not for the result itself... otherwise, indeed, let's just build ready-built dsk images...

Offline AMSDOS

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #18 on: 11:53, 21 October 10 »
Gryzor wrote:

I don't think so - half of the fun (if not all of it) is actually typing it in, not for the result itself... otherwise, indeed, let's just build ready-built dsk images...

Well that settles that then.
* Using the old Amstrad Languages :D   * with the Firmware :P
* I also like to problem solve code in BASIC :)   * And type-in Type-Ins! :D

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Offline Nich

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #19 on: 23:46, 31 October 10 »
I have spent this evening uploading all the type-ins from issues 5 to 12 of Amstrad Action and updating the AA Type Ins entry with galleries of screenshots and links to the DSK files, and adding lots of extra bits of information about some of the type-ins, in a very anorak-like manner. ;)

Things begin to get confusing from issue 14 onwards, as AA began to publish listings outside the 'Type-Ins' section - and they didn't always give them names or mention who wrote them! ::) That'll be fun.

Offline Gryzor

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #20 on: 21:23, 02 November 10 »
Thanks so much for your effort, mate...

Well, they're still type-ins. I don't think this should pose any real trouble :)

Offline Nich

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #21 on: 22:18, 13 November 10 »
I have uploaded a screenshot and DSK file of the GIGO type-in from issue 13 of Amstrad Action.

Offline redbox

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #22 on: 01:50, 14 November 10 »
I have uploaded a screenshot and DSK file of the GIGO type-in from issue 13 of Amstrad Action.

Wow, I remember playing this on my friend's CPC464.  The graphic is Max Headroom!

The last time I thought of this was when my college lecturer was going on inanely about Garbage In Garbage Out.  And that was a long time ago too  :)

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #23 on: 14:42, 23 December 10 »
I have now added the Type-Ins for issues 16 and 18 of Amstrad Action, and the AA Type Ins entry has been split up so that each issue of Amstrad Action now has its own entry - it was becoming far too large for one page! I have also created an Amstrad Action Type-Ins sub-category.

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Re: Type-Ins from Amstrad Action
« Reply #24 on: 16:09, 23 December 10 »
Great job with the splitting - it was indeed way too long!!!

Btw, what's the super-category of AA Type-ins?