Wordstar Tips and TrapsLittérature English
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WordStar is the Morris 1000 of wordprocessors - reliable, basic, and solid. Until the advent of Protext, WordStar (or more accurately its 'clone', NewWord) was the alternative PCW word processor to LocoScript.

For those of us weaned on LocoScript and its nice easy menus, the apparently random commands of WordStar ([ALT]-P-S to underline, [ALT]-Q-C to go to the end of a file etc) and its essentially different way of operating mean you may find a lot of familiar things in LocoScript unfathomable in WordStar. How, for example, do you make headers and footers? How do you delete or copy a block? Though this doesn't purport to be an instruction manual, anyone who knows the rudiments of creating, editing and saving a document in WordStar could use it as such.

The format of the book is a series of statements labelled either TIP or TRAP and a brief paragraph or two of explanation. These follow on from each other quite continuously to make a series of chapters on Editing.

Formatting. Printing and so on. For example, in the Editing section, a tip on how to insert part of one document into another is followed by a cautionary note: the trap of losing all the text in a file if you try to copy a block directly in to it without making the block a separate file on its own first.

This tip-trap system, rather like a huge collection of WordStar TipOffs, seems to work very well and is one that could work very nicely with other packages. Protext for example. It's great for getting a feel of the potential of the software, of what it can and can't do, and of where its strengths lie. Each tip and trap is more or less self-contained, so the book is very handy for looking things up when you get that awful feeling of not understanding what's going on despite having read the manual five thousand times (or maybe because of it).

There are sections on MailMerge and the CorrectStar spelling checker, and the whole book is written in a very straightforward style. Being American it isn't specifically written for PCW owners and covers WordStar version numbers up 10 3.31, which is only available on IBM PCs. It's a pity it doesn't cover NewWord's extras in more detail. Nevertheless, if you use WordStar it would make a very useful addition to your desktop, though at £17.95 you'll have to be a real WordStar fan to make it worth buying.


★ YEAR: 1987
★ AUTHOR: Dick Andersen
★ PRICE: £17.95

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L'Amstrad CPC est une machine 8 bits à base d'un Z80 à 4MHz. Le premier de la gamme fut le CPC 464 en 1984, équipé d'un lecteur de cassettes intégré il se plaçait en concurrent  du Commodore C64 beaucoup plus compliqué à utiliser et plus cher. Ce fut un réel succès et sorti cette même années le CPC 664 équipé d'un lecteur de disquettes trois pouces intégré. Sa vie fut de courte durée puisqu'en 1985 il fut remplacé par le CPC 6128 qui était plus compact, plus soigné et surtout qui avait 128Ko de RAM au lieu de 64Ko.