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Full text of "Atari User Group Newsletter June to December 1987 Part 7"

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I 



Newsletter on Time 
Meeting Late 


Saturday* Lest you become comfortable with 
this new arrangement, rest assured that the 
August meeting will return to the usual FIRST 
Saturday (probably). 


Our June meeting will be on the SECOND 
Saturday, which is June 13. This is due to a 
scheduling difficulty with the Burbank Pavilion, 
which we have grown to know and love. The 
meeting will be at the Pavilion on the Golden 
Mall at the "foot” of Orange Grove, which is 
parallel to, and between. Magnolia and Olive, 

All this, and an Burbank, too! It begins at 10:30 
A,M, and the half hour before and the half hour 
after are dedicated to time for members to copy 
from our vast (or at least half-vast) library of 
Public Domain software, 

1 Hasta Be Astra 

Lou Schwing, President of ASTRA SYSTEMS, will 
be featured at our June meeting, Lou will show 
and tell about the "BIG D" 'THE ONE," and the 
System HD + for the 51. It would be 
diskconcerting if you missed this hard driving 
meeting, (oh, my!) 

When Is Atari Faire 
2.0 Contest 

To the first person who can {in person to John 
King Tarplnian during the June 13 meeting) 
give the dates, times, and location of the ATARI 
FAIRE, VERSION 2.0, a prize of four free door 
prize tickets will be awarded. To the second 
person who can meet the above conditions, 
another four free door prize tickets. To the third 
person who meets the above conditions, our 
deepest sympathy. 

Second Saturday 
Plan in Effect 
for July 

-due to the unanticipated success of our June 
meting being on the SECOND Saturday, and 
jue to the fact that our illustrious ancestors 
saw fit to declare independence on July 4, our 
July meeting will be held on the SECOND 


Do We Have a 
Tuesday for You! 

Tuesdays are meeting nights for us, for sure. 
The SECOND Tuesday, June 9, will be the 
meeting of our ST SIG* This meeting, like all 
Tuesday meetings, starts at 7:00 P.M, and ends 
at 9:00 PM. and is held at the retail store, 
Logical Choice, which is on the east side of 
Lankershim, between Oxnard and Victory, in 
the Safeway shopping center. The THIRD 
Tuesday is our class in programming the 6502 
chip. The FOURTH Tuesday is the MID1-S1G, and 
COMPU- MATES will be there to make another 
one of their entertaining presentations. We are 
working on something for the FIRST Tuesday so 
that you will miss every episode of 
"MOONLIGHTING." 


Beginners Class ST 

Due to popular demand (or some kind of 
demand), Tony Lee will conduct another class 
for beginners on the ATARI ST* This will happen 
on the FIRST Saturday in June, June 6, at 
Logical Choice, at 1 1 :00 A,M, We have it on 
good authority that the class will also be open 
to non-beginne 

7d Spotlight 

by Atari Hagge 


This month Pd like to look at three small, but 
quite useful utility programs for the 8-bit 
A taris 

The first, called the AX LON 1 28 ft RAMdisk 
Patch, comes from ANTIC magazine, February 
1986 (yes, 1986!). It does just what it says,. Jt 
modifies Atari DOS 2.5 for use on the AXLGN 
128ft RAMdisk, As an added bonus, it gives you 
not the 412 free sectors of the L30XE, you have 
710 free sectors! Normally, this modification 
would have limited use, since not too many of 
us have the AXLON 128ft RAMdisk. But a few 
(yours truly included) have upgraded our 800s 


with 256K using an AX LON -compatible 
protocol. So it you're one of the few, this 
program can come in very handy! 

The second program comes in very handy for 
anyone with a RAMdisk (800, XL or XE variety). 
Called RAMcopy!, it is from ANALOG, July 
1986. This little gem allows you to 
automatically copy up to 16 hies from your 
boot disk onto your RAMdisk when you first 
power up your Atari. To do so, you first run a 
BASIC program which asks for your RAMdisk 
drive number, a list of up to 16 filenames, and a 
name for the RAMcopy object file. It then 
proceeds to write this file onto your diskette. 

While the program seems to work quite well, I 
wish the author had figured out an easier way 
to input the filenames. Having to re-write the 
RAMcopy! file each time you want to add 
another filename is a real pain! But I think 
youTl find the convenience worth the effort 

The last program this month is for all of you 
closet assembly-language programmers. For 
those of you who write small assembly 
language routines to do those things for which 
BASIC is just too slow, this program should be 
of assistance. It's called the BBft Monitor and it 
is from the February 1987 issue of ANALOG 
magazine. 

While not a full -Hedged monitor the BBft 
Monitor nonetheless provides some very desired 
features in a small (less than 4ft bytes) program 
which co-resides with BASIC. It offers a mini- 
assembler, disassembler, memory change and 
memory dump, and many DOS functions, 
including binary file save and load. A caveat is 
the base conversion routine (hex to decimal and 
decimal to hex). The authors 1 use of the E: 
device makes correcting typos much easier 
especially when using the mini-assembler. 

The BBft Monitor, like all programs reviewed 
this month, has few frills, but gets the job done. 

Until next time, remember,,, the worth of any 
program is inversely proportional to the weight 
of its output! 



The President's 
Comer 

by John King Tarpinian 

Advance notice! !! Your September issue of 
Antic will feature ACENET in its Users' Group 
review, Gregg Pearlman, of ANTIC, and me 
talked for over two hours about ACENET and 
what It is. Don't miss this issue. 

The work being done on the Southern 
California ATARI Computer Eatre, Version 2.0 is 
ahead of schedule, I am getting ail the support 
I have asked for from ATARI. We expect this 
year's Ealre to be the best yet. Of course, we 
have only had one before this. 

We had our first MiDi meeting in April. We 
had over forty people attending. Most of the 
attendees were professional musicians and new 
to H.A,C.K.S. Boy was I over my head. Lucky for 
us Glenn Fest is our SIG leader. Glenn knows his 
stuff. We have big plans for this new SIG. Ail the 
major MiDi software manufacturers will be 
coming to our meeting to show off their wares. 

You beginners out there are welcome to 
attend. Glenn will be able to meet your needs. 


HOOKED on ATARI CONFUTE R KEYBOARD SOCIETY 

H/OS 

Fresi dent ; Joh n K i ng Ta rpi n i a n 
newsletter Editor: Kitts Anderson 
Public Domain Editor: Alan Magge 
Telecommunications Editor: Dave Evans 
Contributing Editor: Ross Beers 
ST SIG Chairman: Tony Lee 
Flidi'SlG Leader: Glenn Feit 
8 Bit Librarian: Ron Baxter 
16 Bit Librarians: Kevin Gallagher and 
Steven Blackburn 
Graphics and Layout: Lew Marchese 
Founder: Greg liEscott 
Founded: June, 1981 


This newsletter is published by the HOOKED OH ATARI 
COMPUTER KEYBOARD SOCIETY, HACKS, an informs] 
association of individuals. This group is not affiliated with 
ATARI or any other commercial organization. Any trademarks 
or company names are used either with permission or as an 
informal way of referring to a product or an organization. 

Ankles are written and donated by members. Opinions 
expressed In this publication art those of the individual author 
and do not necessarily represent or reflect the opinions of this 
group or any other organization or company. 

Articles appearing in this newsletter may he reproduced 
provided credit is given to the author and to the HOOKED OH 
ATARI COMPUTER KEYBOARD SOCIETY 

Subscriptions to this newsletter are available for $20.00 per 
year. Issues of this newsletter will he sent at no charge in 
exchange for any newsletters sent to us at no Charge- 

Advertising space Is available in this newsletter, and can be 
submitted as camera-ready art or as a pre printed insert. The 
advertising wilt be published in the next available Issue upon 
acceptance of the advertising and payment of the appropriate 
charge. Advertising rates are: Full Page Ad $40,00.. Half Page 
Ad $25 00, 1/4 Page Ad $ 15.00, "Business Card " Size Ad 
$ 10 . 00 . 

Membership dues are $20„QQ per year per person. We also have 
a family rate of $30.00 per family. Payment of dues entitles 
members to attend general meetings, access to our public 
domain library, subscription to this newsletter and discounts at 
participating retailers. 



too. He can talk and teach at any level. 

Another SIG??? A few members have asked 
for a GRAFH1C5-SIG. Do i hear a volunteer to 
lead that SIG? Don't by shy now step forward. 
The deal will be the same for you as for the 
other SIG leaders. You host the meeting and I 
get you what you need in the way of programs, 
guest speakers, etc. Give it a try. You cannot be 
any worse than I am at public speaking. 

Another way to get word about the club is to 
attend other local shows. The Computer 
Trading Post is at the Glendale Civic Auditorium 
once a month. We will be setting up shop there, 
ACENET will be the host group and people will 
be referred to the group closest to them. But 


let's face it, this is our home turf. H.A.CK.S. 
has the most to gain. Anybody wanting to give 
up a Saturday is more than welcome to talk l 
me about working the booth. 

In conjunction with the Computer Trading 
Post ASTRA has lent the club a System t!D+ for 
us to use at these shows. Lew Schwing, 
president of ASTRA, will be at our June 
meeting to show off that and other products, 
too. 

Remember, if you have questions between 
meetings 1 am just a phone call away. You night 
owis just keep in mind that I start work at 7:00 
AM. See you at a meeting or two. 


Floppy Disk Data 
Resurrection for 
5V4" Disks 

by root beers 

Well sooner or later iris bound to happen, A 
disk of yours sits in the sunlight or a drink 
spills on it. What do you do? Well this happened 
to me recently: a cup of tea spilled and 
destroyed my most recent workdisk. Even so, in 
ten minutes' time l had the data safely back. 

Here's what you do: Take the disk to a sink 
with a dustless but soft doth and a felt tip 
marker (preferably waterproof). Wash your 
hands. Mark the top of the disk itself near the 
hub. Tear open the welds on the side farthest 
from the opening for the head, but be careful 
not to bend or scratch the disk. Do not use a 
knife unless you know that it is not magnet- 
ized! On the disk I had, the welds could be 
easily torn; perhaps a new razor blade would be 
the next safest thing to uift. In the following 



steps, handle the disk by the edges and center 
only; if the area is polished don't touch it. 
Remove the disk itself from the sleeve and rinse 
it thoroughly under the tap. The water will 
easily run off the polished surface of the disk 
but will wet the unpolished areas. Use the cloth 
to dry the disk GENTLY; only the center and 
edges should be wet anyway. Allow the disk to 
air dry for a few minutes. Carefully insert the 
disk itself into the disk drive (without the 
sleeve) making sure the proper side is up. When 
you dose the door of the disk drive, do so 
gently and be sure that the disk is properly 
centered. Try to read the disk (do a directory of 
it, for instance). You should be able to read the 
disk at this point. Back it up IMMEDIATELY! 

That's pretty much the technique; I hope > 
never have to use it but if you do, i hope it 
works for you. If it doesn't though, you've 
learned a valuable lesson, right? 


YOUR 

ARTICLE 

BELONGS 

HERE. 




VALLEY’S LARGEST 
SELECTION OF 
ST SOFTWARE 


A ATARI ST, XL & XE 


DEALING 


EXCLUSIVELY WITH 
ATARI SOFTWARE AND 

HARDWARE 


YOU’RE NOT MAKING THE RIGHT CHOICE 
IF YOU’RE NOT MAKING THE LOGICAL CHOICE 

ADDITIONAL 
DISCOUNT 

FOR USER GROUP 
MEMBERS 



LOGICAL CHOICE 

OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK 


6116 LANKERSHIM BLVD. 
NORTH HOLLYWOOD 
(818) 760-0738 




On Track 

by Norm Weinress 

Converting the Atari CX22 Trackball 
for Use on the Atari ST 

Here is another article for converting 8-bit 
trackballs for use on the ST. The subject this 
time is the Atari Model CX22 Trackball, This is 
one of the easiest to modify, though it still 
requires some skill and experience working 
with digital printed circuit boards. The CX22 is 
the one most recently manufactured by Atari. 

There are two different conversions I'd like to 
present here, One is very simple and will satisfy 
most 5T owners. The other is a little more 
complex, but will be a boon to all left-handed 
people who have a violent hate for the "right- 
hand minded" ST. The first will work just as the 
mouse supplied with the computer. But the 
second conversion has a switch that allows the 
user to reverse the right and left mouse 
buttons. I have permitted a left handed ST 
owner to try this feature and he reports that it 
was very comfortable for him. 

Let's describe the insides of the trackball and 
separate the different modifications later. To 
open it, place the trackball face down on a table 
and remove the four screws. How the top is still 
held on by two friction fit pegs attached to the 
top. They fit into two hollow pillars rising from 
the floor of the bottom half of the case. The two 
holes you see at the top and bottom center of 
the case are the insides of these pillars. 

The top can be carefully pried from the 
bottom at the seam, but the plastic is soft and 
you will mar the case. It's better to put a metal 
rod down the center of the pillars, resting on 
the bottom of the peg and gently tap on it to 
separate the case. I found a 16 penny nail with 
the point cut off square works very nicely, 

How you can remove the ball, the two drums 
with slotted plastic wheels attached and the 
third, idler wheel. Be careful the ball bearing 
rings may slide off the drums. Ho problem, just 
don't lose them or get them soiled. 


At this point you will see a printed circuit 
board with a cable attached at a connector. 
There are also a red and a black wire coming 
from the cable and soldered to the left fire 
switch; and a second set of red and black wires 
going to the right switch from the left one. This 
cable must be removed and replaced (it doesn't 
have enough wires) but remove it following 
these instructions. 

Cut the six wires going from the cable to the 
connector on the top of the printed circuit 
board, close to where they emerge from the 
cable. You want to leave wires extending from 
the six-pin board connector. While it is possible 
to remove the cable connector and solder 
directly to the pins on the board, you'll find it 
much easier to just splice to the oid wires 
coming from it. There is a second black wire 
coming from pin I of the connector which goes 
to the left pushbutton switch. Leave this 
connected; it provides the required ground 


connector the length of cable you desire and 
add about six or seven inches. Cut the 
extension cable at that point and discard the 
half with the male connector. 

How carefully strip off the six inches of outer 
jacket at the cut end, exposing the nine inside 
wires. They will be color coded but you have to 
determine which wire goes to which socket pin 
of the connector. Do this with a VOM or 
continuity checker and write down the results. 
Wrap some plastic electrical tape around the 
outer jacket about an inch from the end and 
push this into the groove in the case where the 
cable enters. Add (or remove) tape until it's just 
possible to push it in the groove. How you have 
a good strain relief. 

numbering of the Mouse /Joystick Connector 
(Looking at the connector that witt 
plug onto the ST) 

5 4 3 2 1 

9 8 7 6 



connection for both switches. 

Also cut the red wire going to the left-hand 
switch, again close to where it emerges from 
the cable sheath. The mouse/joystick cable is 
now free and can be removed. You can discard 
this, or use it as a source of hookup wire, as I 
did. Cut the second red wire going between the 
pushbuttons, close to the left switch. 

How looking into the case you'll see an oddly 
shaped circuit board. It is something between a 
triangle and L-shaped. The cable connector is in 
the top left corner. Each component has an 
identifying designation printed in white ink 
near it. There are five IC's in sockets. The ICs 
are named A 1 through A5, You may remove the 
chips named A2, A3 and A4 and add them to 
your trophy case. If you are not going to wire 
the pushbutton reversing feature, you may also 
remove A5, 

At this point, the instructions diverge. The 
simpler modification will be described first. 
However one thing in common is the need to 
replace the mouse cable. This is done by 
cutting up a mouse/joystick extension cable. 
These are available from most stores that sell 
joysticks, including Radio Shack. 

These extension cables are usually ten to 
twelve feet long with a female nine-pin D 
connector on one end (which will plug onto the 
ST mouse port) and a similar, male connector 
on the other end. Measure from the female 


If you have identified which wire goes to each 
pin of the mouse connector, you can begin to 
wire the trackball You may be able to solder 
wires to the proper places without removing the 
board, but I found it easier to remove it. You 
take out the two screws holding it down and 
carefutiy push the two clips apart, just enough 
to slip the board up. 

Looking at the board with the cable 
connector at the top, you'll notice several 
solder pads at the bottom left corner labeled 
"TP" with a number. These are Test Points. If 
you have the tools needed, clean out the sold 
from TF1, TP2, TP3 and TP4. How solder the - 
following wires to the proper TP's. 


Mouse Connector Pin Test Point 

1 I 

2 2 

3 4 

4 3 


Splice the red wire from the left pushbutton 
to the wi re going to pin 6 of the mouse 
connector. Similarly, splice the red wire from 
the right side pushbutton to the wire from pin 
9, How look at that cable connector on the 
board. There are two black wires going to the 


4 




same pin, which is pin i . One wire is stilt 
attached to the pushbuttons* Splice the other 
o the wire going to pin 1 of the mouse 
connector, 

Getting tired of the word "connector" at this 
point? never fear. We're almost done. Splice the 
wire from pin 2 of the board connector to the 
wire from pin 2 of the mouse. The wire going to 
pin 5 of the mouse connector is not used and 
may be cut off. That's it* Well almost. You have 
to put everything back together and route alE 
those wires inside so they won't brush against 
the rollers* slotted wheels or the ball. Also, it 
would be a good idea to trim off the remaining 
wires coming from the board connector. 

What's that you said? This is too easy. You 
want a little more of a challenge* Okay, let's 
include a reversing switch for the pushbuttons. 
The 1C labeled A5 is a quad- two input 
multiplexer. You don't really need to know that 
to do this modification, but it sounds good at 
dub meetings. 

The differences from the above description 
involve bringing the pushbutton wires, the red 
ones* to the circuit board* wiring the 
multiplexer and getting the output to the 
mouse cable. For this procedure you must 
remove the board from the case. 

The fC numbered A5 is a 401 9B, a CMOS 
multiplexer. We will use this chip as a reversing 
switch to swap the functions of the right and 
left pushbuttons. The output of this chip is 
controlled by the slide switch on the board, 

/hich formerly was used to choose between the 
Joystick and Trackball functions of this device. 
We have already freed most of the inputs to this 
chip by removing A 2, A3 and A4, 

There remain two problems. We must have 
pull up resistors tied to the pushbuttons or the 
inputs to the multiplexer will be floating* a 
condition which must be avoided. Fortunately, 
resistors R5 and R6 are now available and can 
be used for this. The second problem is that one 
of these is tied to the comparator (A 1 ) through 
C4 (next to R6). notice on the component side 
of the board there is a circuit trace from the 
bottom of C4 going towards A I , This trace 
must be cut, 

hext to A5 are two square capacitors* C5 and 
C6. Unsolder them and discard. Connect the 
red wire from the right pushbutton to the hole 
where C5 was* the end nearer R5; and connect 
the red wire from the left pushbutton to the 
hole where €6 was, again the end nearer R5. 

You will have to splice some wire to these red 
ones so they will reach* Be careful with the wire 
from the right switchl You must route it up near 
the mouse cable and then down to the board, if 


you go direct you will interfere with a roller and 
slotted wheel. 

From the underside of the board Jumper the 
pad where you connected the right side 
pushbutton to A3 pin 12 and A4 pin 3. From 
the pad where you connected the left side 
pushbutton Jumper to A4 pin 4 and A4 pin 13. 
flow the inputs are wired. 

The outputs of the multiplexer go to the 
cable connector* pins 5 and 6, For this 
conversion splice the wire going to the mouse 
connector pin 6 to the board cable connector 
pin 5. Remember those pins are numbered 
right to left when the connector is at the top* 
Splice the wire from mouse pin 9 to the board 
connector pin 6. The remaining wires are the 
same as above, going to the four test points 
and pins l and 2 of the board connector. Again* 
two wires from the board connector (3 and 4) 
are not used and should be cut off. 

As before, reassemble the trackball, being 
careful that the wires inside the case don't 
interfere with the rollers and slotted wheels. 
You're done! Just plug it in and go! 

The reversing of the trackball pushbuttons is 
now controlled by the slide switch on the side. 

In the righthand position* and buttons are 
normal, In the lefthand position* they are set up 
for a lefty. 

Tech Tips 

To cut a circuit trace, take an Fxacto knife 
and make two parallel cuts across the trace 
about a sixteenth of an inch apart. Cut them 
repeatedly until you are sure you are through 
the copper foil. Then hold a soldering iron right 
on the separated section while trying to pry 
under it with the tip of the knife* The heat 



should soften the glue holding the foil and you 
should be able to lift up the cut portion and 
remove it in about ten seconds. Doing it this 
way not only makes a sure cut, it is also easy to 
solder a piece of wire across it if you need to 
restore the circuit later* 

One other tip deals with metal screws going 
into plastic cases. When reassembling them it is 
easy to miss going back into the same threads. 
Since the screw is so much harder than the 
plastic, you can easily force a new set of 
threads into it. This is called cross-threading 
and you end up destroying ail the threads, so 
that the screw will not hold. The way to avoid 
this is to lightly put the screw in place and turn 
the screwdriver backwards, as if to remove the 
screw. Do it siowly and you will feel the screw 
drop a little bit at some point. At that position 
the screw is at the top of the original threads. 
You should be able to put in it with little resist- 
ance then and not ruin the threads. 



fiCENET 


ATARI 

COMPUTER 

ENTHUSIASTS 

NETWORK 


CHARTER MEMBER 


5 




More ST Notes 

by Paul Graff 

The March issue of the HACKS newsletter 
contained a very Interesting and informative 
article entitled "5T notes” by Steve Blackburn 
about creating text files for documentation of 
public domain software. 

After reading this article, I sat down to see if 1 
could create double-ditk-and-read DOC files, 
too, i followed Steve's procedure and it worked 
just fine. Then, I thought, what if I type in my 
DOC file while in WP MODE and utilize all the 
features of 1st WORD: word wrap, any 
justification, bold, underscore, light, italicized, 
center, indent, reformat, Greek and Hebrew 
characters, an add-on spelling checker, etc. 
Then, only after typing and editing a complete 
document, I would turn off WP MODE and 
save it. 

Well, almost everything worked as i thought 
it would with the exception that special 
characters (Greek, Hebrew, etc.) did not appear 
correctly when the Hie was viewed by double' 
clicking its icon. As I expected, the special 
attributes (bold, italicized, underscore, etc.) did 
not appear, and "justify mode” only left the 
paragraphs (eft-justified when the file's icon 
was double-clicked. However, staying in WP 
MODE had powerful advantages of the word 
wrap, center, indent, spacing and reformat 
commands. 

If you forget to turn off WP MODE before 
saving and obtain a bunch of gibberish when 
double-clicking its icon, just bring that file back 
up on 1st WORD, turn off WF MODE, save again 
and, presto, you have a file that can be viewed 
by double-clicking its icon. 


Steinberg Twenty 
Four Sequencing 
Program 

by James Lee Stanley 

Since five been a professional musician for the 
last twenty- five years, it's easy to see why I 
would be attracted to a computer sequencing 
program. I've recorded seven albums for 
various labels from RCA to Electra/ Asylum. I've 
seen the squandering of thousands upon 
thousands of dollars in recording studios due to 
not being prepared to record when you actually 
get there, flow I know in the creative process 
there Is bound to be hours of experimentation, 
but when you are paying a hundred dollars an 
hour, it tends to cramp your style. And that's 
where the idea of doing it in your home gets 
really attractive. I had heard a little about the 
sequencing programs available for the ST and, 
because the ST was a computer l could afford, I 
purchased one and anxiously awaited the 
release of what I thought was the best all- 
around program. The Steinberg Twenty Four. 

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the 
techniques of recording. III give you a brief 
explanation. You are all familiar with stereo 
recording. There is a left track and a right track; 
both of which are read by a two track playback 
or recording head. How imagine if instead of 
two tracks, you had twenty four tracks. And 
you can record on each of these tracks 
individually. When you make a cassette of your 
favorite album, you are recording on two tracks 
simultaneously. When a record is recorded in a 
studio, tracks are arbitrarily chosen. For 
instance, one track for the bass, one for guitar, 
four for drums, and two for synth. That would 
be eight tracks. Right now, most professional 
recording studios are twenty four tracks, so the 
above configuration would take up eight tracks 
and leave you with sixteen tracks. After the 
eight tracks are recorded, you can listen back to 
them and record with them at the same time, a 
process called "overdubbing”. Steinberg has 
taken this concept and applied it to the ST with 
some pretty spectacular results. 

The Steinberg Twenty Four is a twenty four 
track sequencing program. It is set up so that 
you can only record on one track at a time, but 
there are twenty four of them (hence the name). 
I picked up my program last January and set 
about to master the thing. It is now April and i 
am beginning to feel comfortable with it. Truly, 


I can't figure out what took me so long to grasp 
it, but I do have a whole new respect for the 
term "user friendly”. 

The screen is laid out like a tape machine. 
Each track is visible at all times and when 
something is recorded on a track, a large OH 
lights up beneath each number. There are the 
familiar forward, fast forward and rewind 
commands, numerical locaters so you know 
where you are in the song,- cycle to allow you to 
hear the same sequence over and over again if 
you need it; auto record to allow you to have the 
sequence play along and then automatically 
record you where you want to come in. (I can't 
begin to count the hours of my life that were 
devoted to this on the old analog tape 
machines, when I was my own engineer, 
producer, recordist and artist). How you just tell 
the ST where you want to come in, where you 
want to get out and then push start. There is a 
command called Mastertrack, which allows you 
to change the tempo and the time signature 
within the same song. This is, I believe, the only 
program which provides this option, it may not 
seem important, but when you are trying to 
create the illusion of humans playing and 
everything is computer rigid, the need becomes 
self evident. Each track can also be solo'd while 
the song is playing, so that each part can be 
corrected if need be. And there is a powerful 
edit option, with a grid of the notes as well as a 
read out of their pitch, location, duration, and 
velocity, all of which can be manipulated. And 
every track can be assigned to any of the 
sixteen MIDI channels available, (MIDI is like a 
private line from the computer to a particular 
synth. When the synth and the track are 
assigned the same MIDI channel, then the 
information goes only to that synth. You can 
imagine the confusion if all the info for the 
bass, the drums, and the synths were going to 
each channel— the synth wouldn't know which 
Instructions were meant only for it and the 
result would be cacophony.) 

Hearly every command can be done by the 
keyboard, as we I! as the mouse; but there are 
commands that can only be accessed by the 
mouse. For me this does cut into its efficiency, 
as l prefer to keep my hands on the Keyboard. 

But the real joy, for me. is in the fact that it is 
not music that is being recorded by the 
computer, but merely instructions. That means 
that after you write a part for one sound you 
can have the computer play that part on any 
other sound, in any other octave. This is where 
so much experimentation comes in. This is 
the fun. 

In summing up the Steinberg 24, 1 would say 
that it is a little difficult to grasp initially, but 
well worth the effort. I just got my first scoring 
job for a CBS-TV prime time special, which I 
could not have done without this program. And 
the job is paying me fifty times what the 
program cost, I can't wait for the next gig. 



6 








RAMdisk Organizer 

Kees Jongsma 

Questions Can Be Left on Magic Castle 
under the Name 'Dutch" 


Var. Ram Desk. Auto 

flame Reset Size flame Ate Boot flotes 


HAMXXX 

no 


D 

no 

ye* 

size set by which file is booled 
copy only ramdbk of 
appropriate size 

RAMDISK 

yes 

yes 

D no 

yc. 

Size set by hey combinat ion 
during boot (See document 
tkmi 

FASTRAM 

m 

jts 

C.D.E no 

yes 

Heeds .inF file to set ram size 
see notes and documentation 

JDISK 

no 


D 

no 

yes 

also sets time and date size 
inputed during boot max. of 
379K 

miK RAM no 

yes 

C.D.E yes 

no 

shows how much ram left. 


A ramdisk can be defined as an area of a com* 
puter's memory that is set aside to be used as a 
disk drive. This is accomplished by redirecting 
the computer's pointers that indicate where 
ram is located. The advantage of using a ram 
disk is usually associated with speed. The 
access time for a ramdisk is significantly less 
than a normal disk. In addition, ram disks 
simplify the handling of files, face and/or disk 
copying. 

There are five different types of ramdisks in 
the H.A.CK.5. public domain library, each 
offering different options and memory sizes. 

The program “Ram Auto Loader" automatically 

ads a disk into the ramdisk when the system 
booted. 

Below you will find a discussion of how to set 
up a ramdisk, with a description of the various 
ramdisks that are provided. Each of the folders 
on the disk "ramdisk organizer" has been 
annotated thru the Notepad accessory. This will 
provide you with a quick reference as to how 
the ramdisk works and allow you to add addi- 
tional notes as needed. Some of the ramdisks 
come with documentation that can be dumped 
to screen or printer. 

SETTING UP A RAMDISK— This section 
assumes that you are setting up a ramdisk 
from scratch— i.e. you are not using a ramdisk 
folder from the "Ramdisk Organizer". The first 
step is to read whatever documentation is 
available on that ramdisk so as to gain a com- 
plete understanding of how the ramdisk works. 
Then copy the program to the destination disk. 
Run the program and follow any instructions 
given. Set up a ramdisk by selecting either 
Floppy A or B, select "Install Disk Drive" from 



the options menu, move the ramdisk to where 
you want. Finally, save Desktop for Future use. 
The next time the disk is booted the ramdisk 
will not have to be recreated and running the 
ramdisk program will be the only thing needed. 

THE RAMDISK ORGANIZER— If the above 
section seemed confusing at ail, you will find 
this section a real time saver. The RAMDISK 
ORGANIZER is set up so that all you have to 
do Is: 

1 ) Insert RAMDISK ORGANIZER disk 

2) reset computer 

3) remove RAMDISK ORGANIZER and 
insert destination disk 

4) open ramdisk folder of interest 

5) copy file contents to destination disk 

If the above steps are followed, you will have 
a disk set up for ramdisk operation. The next 
time you boot this disk it will be ready to go. 

The actual operation of the disk will vary 
depending on the nature of the ramdisk that 
you are using. 

The RAMDISK ORGANIZER will provide your 
destination disk with the following: 

]) Notepad accessory 

2) Annotation for the ramdisk 

3) Available ramdisk documentation 

4) Desktop.inf file 

It is recommended that the notes from the 
notepad file are read before you use the ramdisk 
as I have given any peculiarities in that file. The 
Notepad can be called up from the Desk menu 
and is easy to use, 

RAMXXX— This ramdisk comes in a number 
of predetermined sizes and written as an acces- 
sory that boots automatically. When copying 
this file, copy only the I ramxxx which meets 
your size requirements. Copying the entire 
folder will only confuse your computer. 

RAMDISK— Ramdisk is the only persistent 
ramdisk in our library. If the computer is reset 
the contents of the ramdisk will not be 
destroyed, in order for It to work the disk in the 
drive should contain the program and if the 
ramdisk program is not in an auto folder it 
should be run again. 

The size of the ramdisk is determined by 
pressing various key combinations while the 
program is booting. For example, holding the 



"Control and Left Shift" keys during boot-up 
will result in a ramdisk of 384K in size. If no 
keys are depressed the ramdisk will default to 
either 194K or512K depending on your 
system. 

This is the ramdisk I used for the RAMDISK 
ORGANIZER and it works fine without pressing 
any keys since the default ramdisk size is large 
enough for this disk. 

FASTRAM— Can be set up with any legitimate 
ramdisk name. The size and name is deter- 
mined by an INF file called ramdisk (ram- 
disk.inf). This file can be written with First Word 
in the non word processing mode. C320 written 
with First Word and saved as Ramdisk.inf will 
set up a ramdisk "C" with a size of 320K. 

JDISK— This ramdisk has a maximum size of 
379K but allows you to input the size when it 
boots up. In addition, it asks for time and date 
as well. 

INTER AM— Runs as a desktop accessory of 
any size. The size is changed by clicking above 
or below the size numbers. It will allow C,D,E as 
names and indicates how much ram Is left once 
the ramdisk is set up. 

RAMAUTLD— The RAMAUTLD folder contains 
a program (RAMDLD) that will automatically 
transfer programs from the disk to the ramdisk. 
This feature Is used on the RAMDISK 
ORGANIZER, 

The program "Ram did" looks for a file called 
"fite.lst". This file can be written with First 
Word in the non- word processor mode. The 
format For writing this file is as follows: 

FOR FILES IN MAIN DIRECTORY: 

Frogram Name 

FOR FILES IN FOLDER: 

/Folder /Frogram Name 

FOR FILES IN A FOLDER IN AFOLDER: 

/Folder Fri/ Folder Sec/ Frogram Name 

RAMDLD will automatically set up the folders 
and load the program. See the file. 1st on the 
RAMDISK ORAGNIZER for an example. 

Good Luck, 





HACKS 

HOOKED OH ATARI COMPUTER 
KEYBOARD SOCIETY 

6055 Cahuenga Boulevard, *2 
north Hollywood, CA 91606 
818-760-1831 




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