Just read this from Frontlines, issue 17: "There's a lot more to it than shooting from the sixty yard line." Anyone who can shoot from the sixty yard line, should be playing for East Fife or locked up!
Are you still playing Subbuteo? Or have you made what's commonly known as a footballs up?
After a quick show of hands in the changing rooms, we couldn't produce even one footie fanatic on the team. So, what's wrong with a sixty yard line and why do they only have them in East Fife? In fact, the last time the Ed put on a pair of shorts, he was arrested for indecent exposure! Not that there's anything wrong with his knees that amputation wouldn't cure. Troubleshootin' Pete
TO BE SHAW, TO BE SHAWPssst ... After doing a little sniffing around, I sussed out that the following games are due for release in the very near future. So, look out for Dun Nothin', Manic Mooner, Spotty Pidgeon, Monty Birthmark, Spy vs Spy Hunter, Anne Droid Three, Swan Vesta Day and Kosmic Kanga's Jump Challenge. Check 'em out!
G A D Shaw
Barnsley, S Yorks.
Ummm, I'd very much like to know who your source is, 'cos our spies have only told us of You're Welcome to the Frankie Drone, Dimbusters, and The Choccy Horror Show (a tale of marauding Mars Bars). If anyone else has further information, you know where to send it - elsewhere! Troubleshootin' Pete (the other Shaw on this mag!)
How many times have I told you to stop members of your family from sending us silly letters? Will this bid by the Shaw clan for global supremacy never cease? Ed
|f o r u m|
The writing's on the wall. Just peel it off and send it to Forum, Your Spectrum, 14 Rathbone Place, London W1P 1DE. And there's a bundle of free software waiting for this month's Star Letter!
Phew, thank goodness you stopped when you did or you'd have written it so it appeared every time you sneezed! Nice one, Dave. Troubleshootin' Pete.
LE MICRODRIVIN'I'm desperate ... I can't load long programs properly on the microdrives I bought last April in England. I knew Uncle Clive's microdrives weren't perfect but I didn't think they could be this bad. In fact, programs load OK for a week or so and then when I need to use them again, I get the 'file not found' error message. The four freebie cartridges work without problems. Perhaps there's something wrong in the saving procedure? Perhaps it's the cartridges, I don't know. Can you help?
Veuillez agreer l'expression de mes sentiments distingues et devoues.
Olivier le Roy
Sacre bleu. La plume de ma tante. Brigitte Bardot. (That's enough French for one issue, thank-you. Ed). This is the classic problem. For openers, if the drives have been playing up since you first bought them, then it's a good idea to send them back where they came from for a replacement. But if this is a fault that's developed over a period of time, then it could be down to a number of things. First, check that the cable between the Interface 1 and the microdrive looks OK
A while ago, I wanted to plan
a screen of output but found
that I'd run out of grid paper,
so I knocked out a bit of code
to produce a grid. Calling it
from Basic, every time I
needed it was a pain, so I put
it into an Interrupt service
routine. The original grid was
a solid affair and took an
eternity to do, so I added a
flag system that caused a grid
to be produced every other
interrupt. Basic was still being
deprived of time so I altered
the grid to dots as opposed to
lines. A means of switching
the grid on and off without
recourse to the USR call also
helped and I've used this final
version ever since.
Ok, so where's the flaming grid? I hear you ask (or words to that effect). Press the space key and G together (still nothing) and let go - one grid. The grid will go away again once you've pressed the Space/G key combination again.
and move it about till you've
got the best position for the
connection. Also, move the
Speccy system as far away
from the TV/Monitor as
possible. If all this fails, bring
out the Kleenex and break
down yourself for the evening.
LIST TO PORTI've done it! I've finally discovered a mag that doesn't ignore microdrives. (And what took you so long may I ask? Ed). But there's still room for improvement - why don't you have a section each month devoted to the little black boxes. As a newcomer to them, I'd find the hints 'n' tips very useful. (My, you are behind the times. What d'you think Andy Pennell's up to in his new column? Ed).
One more thing. In Forum, issue 13, 'Someone POKEd Pete' with the following suggestion for changing line zero to another line and vice- versa - POKE (PEEK 23535+256+PEEK 23636)+1,X. Well, correct me if I'm wrong but doesn't POKE 23756,x do exactly the same thing with less strain on the old fingers?
Nope, you're not wrong but then again you're not wholly right either. It all depends on whether you've got the Interface 1 connected. This is something a lot of POKErs forget when coming up with these quickie solutions. Troubleshootin' Pete.
JOIN THE CLUBI'd really like to know how to start a Spectrum club in my area. What activities should we plan and how do we raise funds? Has anybody got any tips?
Well, Cathal the simplest method if you're still at school or college is to form your club there. Ask a teacher or tutor if they'd be interested in helping you. If you've left the blackboard jungle behind you, then it's an idea to try the local library. They usually have back rooms where you can meet with your machines and it's a good place to pin up notices. Of course, if you're a group of adults, why not meet at the local pub once a week. Once you've marked out your meeting place, it's just a question of drumming up the membership. Send out press
releases to all the computer
mags and to your local paper.
Advertising in local
newsagents will also bring in a
few newcomers. After that,
word of mouth will do the
trick. Of course, if anyone in
Carlow wants to get in touch
with Cathal, we'd be happy to
pass on your letter.
Come on YS! - Megagame! Were you bribed or were you just maintaining your chances of getting OBEs. (Mmmm, Troubleshootin' Pete OBE. It has a sort of ring to it! TP). I'm sure even Bond himself would have preferred the game to stay Top Secret.
But apart from this, I think the magazine is mega fantastic (crawl, crawl) and I hope this minor criticism won't prevent you from publishing my letter (grovel, grovel).
Don't think you can get round me like that. How dare you! You accuse me of being bribed and then expect me to publish this terrible tirade against my integrity.
Well, let me tell you, it was only the fiver you slipped in at the last minute that persuaded me to relent. Ho hum.
And c'mon let's not be modest - you've got to admit our review was much better than the game itself! Ed
N..N..NUTCASEHa, a real nail in the coffin for Kevin Cox-up here, unless TP's got a st..stutter. Anyone read From The Hip, issue 17 lately? Well, I quote: "Got that? Well, let's say that you've stuck your routine at 50175 - and you've stuck
your routine at 50175 - and
you've remembered to clear
up (shouldn't that be down?)
to 50175 haven't you?" Notice
how it's been taken beautifully
out of context to make TP
look stupid - not that he
Plus, am I blind or are you getting mega-stingy on your free software? I can't see a star letter in sight. Phew! If all that doesn't deserve a trainspotter award, what does? (You can find out at the bottom of the page! Ed) So gimme!
N..n..no, Ian we ain't getting stingy but we're making an exception in your case - you're getting nowt! Troubleshootin' Pete.
I'll agree that I had no trouble getting my money back when I returned the Microdriver but Mirage denied all responsibility for a fault that'd developed on my Interface 1 after attempting to use the Microdriver.
Leigh on Sea, Essex
Right, Mr Sawyer, we had a chat with Mirage about your problem and it seems that the Microdriver doesn't work with late issue 1 and early issue 2 Speccies. That particular batch
had a fault in the clock -
something Sinclair Research
owns up to in their service
manuals. It's even cured
automatically whenever one of
the offending machines goes in
for an overhaul. Mirage is now
putting a note into the
instructions explaining the
Mirage won't take the blame for your Interface 1 troubles, though. The Microdriver is an unpowered unit, so Mirage reckons there's no way it could blow up your Interface I unless you unplugged it while the system was switched on. Troubleshootin' Pete.
So, how'd you solve it, I hear you ask. (How'd you solve it? Ed). Just assign a different variable to the loop in lines 50-70 instead of Z - such as M, that's how!
Drat, you spotted the deliberate mistake thrown in just so you wouldn't think we were perfect. What d'you mean, worra lorra waffle? Oh well Ed.
GRID DEC DE ; Points to IR FLAGS LD A,#7F IN A,(#FE) RRA ; Space key? JR C,GD_ON?;Nope LD A,#FD IN A,(#FE) BIT 4,A ; G key? JR NZ,GD_ON?;No LD A,(DE) XOR #80 LD (DE),A ; Space/G keys flips bit 7 of IR FLAGS CALL WAITNK ; Wait until k'bd is free otherwise I'll flip bit 7 again, and again,.... GD_ON? LD A,(DE) RLA RET NC ; Grid is not required so I'm off back to MANAGER ; Produce Grid (28 ms of sheer bliss) LD HL,#4000 LD BC,#AA LD D,3 SECT LD E,3 HORIZ LD A,(HL) OR C LD (HL),A INC L DJNZ HORIZ INC H VERT INC H FILL SET 7,(HL) INC L DJNZ FILL INC H DEC E JR NZ,VERT INC H DEC D JR NZ,SECT BIT 7,(IY+1) RET Z ; I'm only prepared to do a 24 line COPY during runtime LD A,#7F IN A,(#FE) AND 3 RET NZ ; SS/Space
keys not depressed ie COPY not wanted so shoot back ;to MANAGER ; 24 line COPY comin' up LD B,192 LD HL,#4000 COPY_1 PUSH HL PUSH BC LD A,B CP 3 SBC A,A AND 2 OUT (#FB),A LD D,A COP_L1 CALL #1F54 JR C,COP_L2 CALL WAITNK ; Wait until k'bd is free else I'll BREAK out of ; BASIC first chance END_1 POP HL POP HL END_2 LD A,4 OUT (#FB),A RET ; Had enough? COP_L2 IN A,(#FB) ADD A,A JP M,END_1 JR NC,COP_L1 CALL #0F12 POP BC POP HL INC H LD A,H AND 7 JR NZ,COPY_2 LD A,L ADD A,#20 LD L,A CCF SBC A,A AND #F8 ADD A,H LD H,A COPY_2 DJNZ COPY_1 JR END_2 ; Wait until there are no grubby hands on MY k'bd routine WAITNK XOR A WAIT IN A,(#FE) CPL AND #1F JR NZ,WAIT RET Back to the MANAGER - I'm worn out!