Minimum requirements: EGA or VGA monitor
GIF Print Utility
This section will explain WHAT the GIFXTS program is intended to
do. During the testing of the program, there was a lot of confusion
regarding the display, the output and what exactly should be expected. In
order to ensure that the phrases and "buzz" words that are used mean the
same to everyone, let's start with some terminology.
PIXEL - a graphical point of resolution. Each graphics monitor
contains a maximum number of addressable pixels, EGA is 640x350,
VGA is 640x480. When software is written it sets the resolution, thus a
VGA monitor can be "changed" to EGA mode by specifying that the
graphics driver is to use the EGA pixel resolution of 640x350, or even
640x200. Thus "pixel" is somewhat independent of the monitor.
Independent in that although the monitor has a physical MAXIMUM
resolution, any lower resolution can be used. Gifxts uses an EGA
resolution, 640 pixels by 350 pixels.
GIF - Graphics Interchange Format - A method of encoding and
decoding the graphical information presented on a monitor. Thus a GIF
image is a graphical image that has been encoded using this methodology.
In order to re-generate the display, the decode methodology is used. *
GIF and "Graphics Interchange Format" are trademarks (TM) of
Compuserve, Inc., an H&R block company.
When an image is originally created, the artist has decided which 16
colors are to be used and has loaded these colors into a "palette".
Although the computer can generate 256 different, most monitors can
display only 16 colors at one time. Thus the artist will select the 16 colors,
including the background color, and load the palette. The next step is to
"draw" the image.Each pixel of the image has one color assigned to it. The
color is indicated by the palette entry, therefore a pixel whose color is 1, is
using the color located in the first entry of the palette. If the color located
in entry 1 is changed, the pixel will immediately change to the new color.
When the image is saved, the palette configuration and the color of each
individual pixel is recorded, usually left -to-right, top-to-bottom. Thus to
restore the image, the file is read, the palette is loaded and the pixels are
colors, left-to-right, top-to-bottom.
When a GIF file is read into GIFXTS, each palette entry is assigned a
character. Entry 1 is a '!', entry 2 is a '\' and so on. There are 94 different
characters that can be used. However, there are only 14 colors available.
The colors BLACK and WHITE are reserved. There is a really GOOD
reason for this, that I will try to explain:
The default background color (palette entry 0) is black, white is
defaulted to entry 15. When I first started programming this program, I
looked at "white grid on black background" vs. "black grid on white
background". The white on black was very difficult to look at, so I opted
for black on white. The menus use white text on a black background with
a colored highlight bar. The menu bar uses black on a colored background.
When I first started loading GIF images, everything went smoothly until
on day. The menu bar disappeared, the menus were blank, the menu
highlight bar was gone. It turned out that the color palette associated with
the GIF I reading consisted of 2 colors, white ,entry 1, and black, every
other entry. At that time I decided that not only would I protect the palette
entries for black and white, but I would not allow any other entry to be set
to black or white.
This can have a very interesting affect on some images, so once an image
is loaded into GIFXTS FORGET THE COLORS. THINK SYMBOLS! It
doesn't matter if the spots on Bambi are green, blue or white. As long as
they are a different SYMBOL than the rest of the image. If the color(s)
really bother you, use the EDIT MENU and select the option to use
BLACK SYMBOLS. Then the only time you will see the colors is when
you use the VIEW or PRINT options.
Once you have an image loaded, you can add detail by adding new
symbols or delete detail by deleting symbols. You can also change the
color palette, change the colors assigned to individual symbols and trim
the image down to any segment of the image. After performing whatever
editing you want, you can save the image.
SAVING IMAGES WITHIN GIFXTS:
There are 2 ways to save an image that you have loaded into GIFXTS.
You can save it as a GIF file. This file will be readable by any GIF viewer
BUT PLEASE BE AWARE THAT THE COLOR CONSTRAINTS
EXPLAINED ABOVE ARE IN EFFECT IN THE SAVED FILE! Or you
can save the file as an XTS file. This file is NOT readable by a GIF viewer.
It contains some additional information about the image, such as the
colors assigned to each of the 94 symbols, and which symbols were used.
PRINTING THE IMAGE AS A PATTERN:
Gifxts itself will not print the symbolized image, rather it will produce a
GIF file that can be printed using a GIF print utility for your printer. (I
suggest that you wander thru the Graphics Support and/or Quick Pictures
for a GIF print utility that suits your printer, and your pocketbook.) This
file is MUCH bigger than the original GIF image. This is because each
individual pixel is now being changed to a 6x7 pixel character, plus the
grid lines. Thus the final printable symbolized GIF file size will be:
(original width x 8)+1 and (original height x 7)+1(+ the symbol
chart at the bottom of each image)
BUT there are 2 ways to produce this file: You can either "print" the
entire file, or you can select sections to print. The selection box will
automatically select a width that will produce a file not more than 640
pixels. The symbol chart at the bottom of the file will list every symbol
used for the ENTIRE image.
Hopefully this little explanation will help you understand what you are
viewing, and creating when using GIFXTS. If you have any questions, and
are a registered user, feel free to contact me:
576 Benson Road
Middlebury Ct. 06762
The purpose of this program is to take GIF files (some of which are
great pictures) and change them into charted stitch patterns.The program
can handle GIF images up to 640 pixels x 480 pixels. The simplest use is
to load in a GIF image, create the printable output and print the charted
Notations used: or indicates to hold down the alt or
cntl key while simultaneously depressing the indicated key. Thus R
means hold down alt and depress the R key (upper/lower case is
irrelevant) page up means hold down the cntl key and depress the
page up key.
Start the program by typing GIFXTS. The $*& that flashes across
the screen is shown during the initialization to indicate that the program is
starting correctly. When ever files are being loaded or written, a message
is displayed, and a line is written across the screen, just to let you know
that something is happening.
The screen shows a grid 56 squares high by 39 squares wide. with
every tenth line being a dashed line. Across the top of the screen is an
option bar. This bar lists the various menus, and options. Here is a brief
description of the options, see the section entitled MENUS for complete
details of the menus, see the section entitles VIEW for details on View
1) File (F) - this menu contains options related to file
controls ie loading files, saving file, changing directories.
2) Edit (E) - this menu contains options related to
editing the loaded image. ie change color of symbols, change
3) Symbols (S) - this menu allows you to change the
4) Print File Creation (P) - this menu allows to you
generate the output file for printing. You can either print the
ENTIRE image,or select sections of the image to print. See PRINT
5) Help (H) - this menu presents you with the various
help topics available.
At the bottom of the screen is a information section. In this section
is displayed the current symbol, the current directory, and the file, if any,
that has been loaded.
When moving around the image, the edges of the image, and/or the
grid, are indicated by a thick black line.The cursor cannot be moved past
The 'X' is the cursor and is controlled via the key board. The
following commands will move cursor:
Right arrow/R/r - move X 1 square to the right *+
Left arrow//L/r - move X 1 square to the left *+
Up arrow/U/u - move 1 square up *
Down arrow/D/d - move 1 square down *
home/H/h - move to farthest left visible square
end/E/e - move the farthest right visible square
page up - move up 10 squares *
page down - move down 10 squares *
R - move to the right 10 squares *+
L - move to the left 10 squares *+
Home - move to the left edge of the design *+
End - move to the right edge of the design *+
Page up - Move to the top of the design *
Page down - Move to the bottom of the design *
C/c - move to the center of the grid (no matter where in the grid you are)
* These commands will also control the select box in VIEW
+ These commands will also control the select box in PRINT
Symbols can be added to the pattern and deleted from the pattern
using the ENTER key and DEL key, respectively. These keys will perform
their actions on the grid square where the cursor is. Symbols can be
replaced by positioning the cursor on the symbol to be replaced, and
hitting enter. The Current Symbol will replace the previous symbol.
In addition to the 1 symbol at a time technique, the borders of the
image can be adjusted. Using the Edit Menu, it is possible add rows or
columns to the edges of the design. The border markers will be moved out
1 row/column. It is also possible to move the border IN to the current
cursor position. When the borders are moved in, all symbols the are
beyond the new border(s) are deleted. This technique can be used to Trim
or crop an image by positioning the cursor at the edges of the desired
section, and moving the borders in. The THUMPER.GIF was cropped
from BAMBI.GIF using this technique.
All the menus display a list of items for selection. Use the up/down
arrows and page up/down to highlight the selection and hit enter. If there
are more selections than visible (ie the symbol menu) the items will scroll
thru the menu area when you try to move past the bottom or top of the
menu. When the item you want is highlighted, hit enter. The first option of
almost all the menus is CANCEL. Selecting CANCEL will get you out of
the menu without taking any action. ESC will do the same thing.
FILE MENU (F)
This menu allows you to read in files, save the current display,
exit from the program and/or quit without saving anything.
Change Directory - This option will present you with a single
line display of the current directory. ie c:\123\ABC. Change directory by
back spacing , to create c:\123 and/or typing in the desired name, to
create c:\123\XYZ or c:123\ABC\456. THERE IS A 20 CHARACTER
LIMIT ON THE DIRECTORY NAME. The "new" directory will be used
when loading files, saving files and creating the print directory. AT TIME
YOU CANNOT CHANGE DRIVES WITH THIS OPTION.
Change Drive - This option will present you with a single line
display of the current drive. ie C:. To change to a different drive simply
type the drive letter. If the drive does not exist, you cannot change to it. If
you select A: or B: you will be prompted to "insert diskette, hit any key
when ready". IF THE DRIVE IS NOT READY THE PROGRAM COULD
ABORT, AND EXIT, IF YOU TRY TO READ A FILE.
Load GIF file - This option will present you with another menu that
lists all the files in the current directory that have .GIF ending. Position the
highlight bar at the file wish to load. While the file is being read, a
message will appear, and an line will "grow" across the screen. The
length, and starting position, of the line are DIRECTLY related to the
width of the image. The wider the image, the longer the line.
Load XTS file - This option will also present you with another
menu listing all the files in the current that have a .XTS ending. Position
the highlight bar at the file wish to load. These are the files that this
program has created. While the file is being read, a message will appear,
and an line will "grow" across the screen. The length, and starting
position, of the line are DIRECTLY related to the width of the image. The
wider the image, the longer the line.
Save Current Pattern(XTS) - This option will save the current
pattern. Another menu is presented listing all the .XTS files. You can save
the pattern to an existing file, or select ENTER NEW NAME to create
a new file. If you create a new file, an area is presented to type in the
file name. the .XTS will be added automatically. After saving the current
pattern you can continue either working with this pattern or load another
image or pattern.
Save as GIF File - This option allows you to save the current pattern
in a GIF format. This file (.GIF) can be read by a GIF viewer. Another
menu is presented listing all the .GIF files. You can save the pattern to an
existing file, or select ENTER NEW NAME to create a new file. If you
create a new file, an area is presented to type in the file name. The .GIF
will be added automatically. After saving the current pattern you can
continue either working with this pattern or load another image or pattern.
The primary difference between the GIF and XTS files is that the
XTS file contains information about the 94 symbols. If you have changed
the default color of any of the symbols, you MUST save the design as an
XTS file, or you will LOSE the symbol color(s). In the future, the XTS file
will also contain additional information, such as backstitching, floss count
Quit (Delete changes) - This option will allow you to exit from the
program without saving. You will be presented with a verification menu:
"Yes quit" or "No don't quit" also known as an HOOPS menu. This gives
you a chance to change your mind.
Save(XTS) & Exit - Identical to Save Current Pattern, with the
addition that after the pattern is saved, the program will end.
EDIT MENU ( E)
This menu allows you to edit the grid, the pattern and/or the symbols.
Clear Grid - This option will clear the grid of the current pattern,
leaving you with a blank grid. The TOP/BOTTOM/LEFT/RIGHT positions
are reset to the edges of the grid. Any chances that were made to the color
palette or the symbols, will be preserved.
Add Row to Top - This option adds an additional row to the top of
the design. The top edge is moved up 1 row.
Add Row to Bottom - This option adds an additional row to the
bottom of the design. The bottom edge is moved down 1 row.
Add Column to Right - This option adds an additional column to the
right of the design. The right edge is move out 1 column.
Add Column to Left - This option adds an additional column to the
left side if the design. The left edge is moved out 1 column.
Change Symbol Color - This option presents you with 14 color bars
representing the 14 colors available in the color palette. Use the up/down
arrow keys to select a new color for the current symbol. Hit ENTER to
select a new color. Hit ESC to NOT change the current symbol
color. After selecting a new color, the design will be re-drawn, using
the new color.
Change Color Palette - This option presents you with 14 color bars
representing the current color palette. Use the up/down arrow keys to
select the color you wish to change. Hit ESC to terminate this option. Hit
ENTER to select the color you wish to change. The screen will turn white.
A new box with 14 color bars is presented. the color you selected is
the topmost color bar. Use up/down arrows, and page up/page down to
scroll thru the 256 possible colors. Hit ESC to NOT make a selection, Hit
ENTER to make a choice. You will be returned to the 14 color bars of
the palette, to make another selection, and the design will re-appear.
The color palette change will take place IMMEDIATELY.
BLACK SYMBOLS/COLOR SYMBOLS - This option allows you
to view the symbols on grid as BLACK symbols, or as COLORED
symbols. The entry in the menu will toggle between the 2 choices. Even
when BLACK SYMBOLS are shown, the VIEW and PRINT screen will
SYMBOL MENU (S)
There are 94 different symbols that can be selected. This menu presents
the symbols and their assigned colors. Use page up/page down, and the
up.down arrow keys to select the symbol to be used as the "current"
PRINT FILE CREATION(P)
This option will allow you to generate GIF files containing the grid
pattern. These files will be placed in a directory called XTSPRT, directly
'below' the current directory. Depending on the size of the original image,
this procedure could take up to 10-15 minutes. Generating a print file
for a section of the image takes 3-5 minutes. While the print file is being
generated, colored lines will be drawn across the screen. As long as these
lines are being drawn, the program is working properly.
Cancel The Print - This will terminate the print routine, without
producing the print file.
Print Full Pattern - This option will create a file containing the
ENTIRE image, transformed into a grid.
Select Section To Print - This option will present a VIEW image of
the GIF with a select box centered left to right around the cursor from top
to bottom. The select box represents a final output width of 593
pixels. Thus, if your GIF print program can handle maximum of 640
pixels wide, you can select different section of the image to print. The
movement of the box is identical to the cursor control except that
there is no up or down control, since the box extends from the top to the
bottom of the image. When the select box is enclosing the area of the
image you wish to print, hit Enter. If you wish to terminate this selection
process, hit Esc.
When the print file is complete, you will be returned to the grid. If
you moved the selection box, you will be returned to this area.
This option will show the current pattern without the grid. Across
the top and bottom of the pattern is a cross-hatched area, this is used to
show the limits of the pattern, just in case you scroll past the top or
bottom. Lines are drawn to desiginate the left, right, top & bottom of the
design. Actually this is like a normal GIF display. To scroll the display
up/down use Cntl U for up and Cntl D for down. A box is drawn showing
the area that is shown on the grid. This box can be moved in a manner
identical to moving the 'X' on the grid. Hit Enter to return to the grid. The
grid will show the area designated by the box. Thus moving the box in this
mode is a quick way to move around the grid. Hit ESC to return to the
original grid section. This will cancel any movement of the box.
DISCLAIMER - AGREEMENT
Users of GIFXTS must accept this disclaimer of warranty:
"GIFXTS is supplied as is. The author disclaims all warranties, expressed
or implied, including, without limitation, the warranties of merchantability
and of fitness for any purpose. The author assumes no liability for
damages, direct or consequential, which may result from the use of
GIFXTS is a "shareware program" and is provided at no charge to the user
for evaluation. Feel free to share it with your friends, but please do not
give it away altered or as part of another system. The essence of "user-
supported" software is to provide personal computer users with quality
software without high prices, and yet to provide incentive for programmers
to continue to develop new products. If you find this program useful and
find that you are using GIFXTS and continue to use GIFXTS after a
reasonable trial period, you must make a registration payment of $20.00 to
Chris O'Donnell at the address below. The $20.00 registration fee will
license one copy for use on any one computer at any one time. You must
treat this software just like a book. An example is that this software may
be used by any number of people and may be freely moved from one
computer location to another, so long as there is no possibility of it being
used at one location while it's being used at another. Just as a book cannot
be read by two different persons at the same time.
Anyone distributing GIFXTS for any kind of remuneration must first
contact Chris O'Donnell at the address below for authorization. You are
encouraged to pass a copy of GIFXTS along to your friends for evaluation.
Please encourage them to register their copy if they find that they can use
it. All registered users will are entitled to free upgrades.
If you encounter a problem, or have any questions or comments please
contact me. Obviously, all problems will be responded to, question and
comments are welcome from registered users.
576 Benson Road
Middlebury, Ct 06762