Contents of the PCXSHOW.DOC file
* PCX-SHOW *
* ShareWare Version *
* Documentation/Information *
PCX-SHOW is a highly stylized screen presentation program from DECISIONS
Software of Phoenix, Arizona. The program allows the user to create customized
screen presentations using pictures/screens saved or captured in the PCX file
format. PCX-SHOW features include multiple screen fades and segues,
kalidescope screen effects, text display using customized and computer fonts,
border and screen clearing effects and more.
The PCX file format is one of the single most used graphics file formats in the
DOS world. It is the native format of the PC Paintbrush series of programs and
was developed by ZSoft Corporation. Most of the major graphics programs allow
the importing and/or exporting of graphics screens in this format.
The files included in this ShareWare version are:
PCXSHO.EXE - PCX-Show program
PCXSHOW.SPT - Demonstration Script File
PCXSHOW.DOC - This documentation file
PCXORDER.FRM - Order Form
HELV12.FNT - 12pt Helvetica Custom Font
FADE.PCX - PCX Screen file for demo
KALID1.PCX - PCX Screen file for demo
ORDER.PCX - PCX Screen file for demo
PICTURE.PCX - PCX Screen file for demo
POINTER.PCX - PCX Screen file for demo
SHOW2.PCX - PCX Screen file for demo
PCX-SHOW Demonstration Show
A demonstration of many of the features of PCX-SHOW is included in this
ShareWare version. To view the demo, change to the directory where the
PCX-SHOW files are stored. From that directory type PCXSHO at the DOS prompt
and press the Enter key. A brief ShareWare screen will appear. In a few
seconds, the demonstration program will begin.
PCX-SHOW SHAREWARE VERSION
The ShareWare concept is quite simple. Try out PCX-SHOW for a short period of
time (30 days maximum). If you would like to order PCX-SHOW, simply send in the
Registration/Order form included with this file (PCXORDER.FRM) along with your
payment. If not, erase the files, discontinuing all use of the program.
The ShareWare version of PCX-SHOW is identical to the registered version with a
1. A brief ShareWare screen appears at the beginning and end of each
session of PCX-SHOW. These screens are removed in the registered
2. The registered version includes three additional custom fonts;
Times Roman, Futura and Old English.
3. The registered version includes a professionally printed and bound
user manual. The documentation in this manual is more in depth and
includes several sample show scripts.
4. Two utilities, PCXCAP.COM and PCXSV.EXE are included with each
registered order. PCXCAP.COM is a screen capture program designed for
use with PCX-SHOW. This program captures any graphics screen you can
display in the PCX file format. PCXSV.EXE is a menu driven PCX file
viewing utility. Both of these utilities are also available in the
ShareWare file PCXUT.ZIP. That file is probably available from the
same source where you received the PCX-SHOW zip file. These utilities
may be ordered separately. See the order form (PCXORDER.FRM) for
We plan to continually add to and improve the PCX-SHOW series of programs.
Plans call for adding new and unique screen fades/segues, allow for user
queries, create new custom and fonts and so forth. Registration will guarantee
that you receive the latest version of PCX-SHOW and associated files and that
you will be notified as each update is available.
We have included a form for your use in ordering PCX-SHOW. The order form is
contained in the file PCXORDER.FRM and is stored as simple ASCII text. You
may print this form on your line printer. To print, first log on to the
drive/directory where the order form file is located. Be sure your printer is
turned on and ready to print. At the DOS prompt type:
and press the Enter key. You may also load and print the form from any
editor/word processor that accepts and prints ASCII text files.
Once you've printed the form, fill out the information requested and return
along with your payment to the address indicated and we'll rush you your
registered version of PCX-SHOW.
All orders and inquiries should be directed to:
P.O. Box 31418
Phoenix, AZ 85046
Minimum hardware requirements for using PCX-SHOW are an IBM compatible
computer, DOS 2.xx or higher, 348K RAM memory and a EGA, VGA or SVGA graphics
card and monitor.
This ShareWare documentation file contains information on how to use PCX-SHOW
to create your own customized screen presentations. It covers each of the
features available in PCX-SHOW. In-depth explanations and tutorials are
included in the printed and bound manual that accompanies the registered
version but are not included in this ShareWare documentation. We do provide
you, however, with all the information needed to tryout and use every feature
available in PCX-SHOW.
If you haven't viewed the demonstration of PCX-SHOW yet, we suggest you do so
before continuing with this documentation. The demo will give you a good
overview of the capabilities of the program. To see the demo show, change to
the directory where you have installed your PCX-SHOW files. At the DOS prompt
and press the Enter key. The program will load and run the demonstration
A. VIDEO/PCX MODE: PCX-SHOW uses the 640 x 350 resolution EGA screen for it's
display screen by default. This means that presentations may be viewed on
systems that contain EGA, VGA and Super VGA graphics cards. It is important
to have an understanding of how PCX-SHOW stores and displays PCX files.
To accomplish the nifty screen fades and segues, PCX-SHOW must store at least
one screen file in background memory while displaying another visual (or
foreground) screen. The number of screens you store in the background at any
one time depends on the memory available to your system. To use the features
of the program, you only need memory for two screens. . . the foreground,
visible screen and one background screen.
Some graphics modes have the ability to store more than one complete graphics
screen in memory. One screen is the foreground screen. . . that is the visible
screen. The others are considered background screens. When PCX-SHOW loads a
PCX file, it stores it in memory as a background screen. With an EGA graphic
adapter, there is sufficient memory to store at least two EGA graphic screens.
Many VGA graphics adapters had only 256K of memory. This is not enough memory
to store two of it's high resolution screens. One VGA screen (640x480)
requires 132K. Two screens require 264K. That exceeds the memory the VGA
adapter has to work with.
Consequently we chose the most universally compatible video mode available.
This means that any system equipped with a EGA graphics card and monitor or
higher may use PCX-SHOW. [Note: A VGA version of PCX-SHOW will also be
available. Contact us at DECISIONS if you would like more information on this
There is NO limit to the total number of PCX screen files you may use in a
presentation. For those with limited memory, we have included a CLEAR command.
When you have displayed a screen you may clear the memory that was required for
its display and then load a new screen file. You will notice in the demo that
we never load more than two screens at any one time. The maximum size of a
single PCX file for PCX-SHOW is 64K.
HOW PCX-SHOW WORKS
You interface your PCX formatted screens with PCX-SHOW using a proprietary
Script format. The Script format is simply a set of one or two word commands
that tells PCX-SHOW what you want to do. An example of a Script file is the
demonstration file PCXSHOW.SPT. Take a look at this file in any editor/word
processor that is able to load and read ASCII based text files.
Once you have created or captured the PCX screens you wish to include, you need
to tell PCX-SHOW when and how you want them displayed. You may also use the
Script to display text (using custom or computer fonts), create kalidescope
screens, clear screens or draw screen borders.
You may create the Script in any editor/word processor that can save a file in
standard ASCII format. Once you've completed your Script you can name it using
any conventional DOS characters. To see the show at the DOS prompt you would
and then press the Enter key. The Script file and PCXSHO.EXE file must be in
the same drive/directory. If no file name is given when PCXSHO is entered at
the DOS prompt, the program looks for a default file named PCXSHOW.SPT. That's
what we named our demo Script. If PCX-SHOW can't find the Script file it will
Let's say you created a Script file named MYSHOW.SHW and you want to view the
show. From the DOS prompt you type:
and press the Enter key. Be sure there is a space between PCXSHO and your
Script file name. You may, of course, add to, change or delete lines/commands
in your Script file at any time.
The following is a review of all the Script commands available in PCX-SHOW.
Script files may be prepared in any editor/word processor that is able to save
files in the ASCII format. Each Script command must be on a separate line.
Any combination of upper and lower case letters are allowed. The proper syntax
outlined below must be followed.
We have grouped the commands in six main categories. They are:
1. File Commands
2. Fades & Segues
3. Clearing the Screen
4. Kalidescope Commands
5. Text Display
6. Miscellanous Commands
1. File Commands: There are three file commands. They are LOAD, CLEAR and
LOAD [Filename.Ext] [Number]
This script command is used to load a PCX screen file. The LOAD command is
followed by the filename and extension. Finally, you must assign that file a
number. For example, if you wanted to load a PCX file named MYFILE and assign
it as file number one the syntax would be: LOAD MYFILE.PCX 1
You may also designate a drive and directory if your PCX file is not in the
same directory as the PCXSHO.EXE program. For example, if your file is located
on drive C in a directory named PCXPICS, then the proper syntax would be:
LOAD C:\PCXPICS\MYFILE.PCX 1
Be sure there is a space between each element of the command. The LOAD command
does not display the file on screen, but simply sends the information to
memory. To display a file, you use the SEND and FADES script commands after
the LOAD command.
This command is the opposite of the LOAD command. It removes the PCX screen
file from memory. To remove the file from memory in the example cited above
the proper syntax would be: CLEAR 1
This command identifies the loaded PCX screen file you wish manipulate by it's
number. The SEND command is used just prior to identifying how you want the
screen displayed. The actual command to display the screen is the FADES
command. We will next examine the multiple fades available in the category
named Fades & Seques.
2. Fades & Seques: This is the command that actually display's your loaded
PCX screen file on to your screen. There is one command in this category.
That command is FADES. The proper syntax for this command is:
There are 19 possible fade/segue numbers that follow the FADES command. Here
is a list of the screen fade numbers and the type of fade/segue it invokes.
1 - Instant on (the entire PCX screen pops on instantaneously).
2 - Implode
3 - Puzzle Pieces
4 - Diagonal Wipe
5 - Horizontal Squeeze
6 - Explode
7 - Fast Fade
8 - Weave
9 - Slide Up
10 - Slide Right
11 - Slide Left
12 - Slide Down
13 - Random Fade
14 - Slow Fade Down
15 - Split Screen Fade
16 - Blinds 1
17 - Blinds 2
18 - Blinds 3
19 - Blinds 4
3. Clearing the Screen: There is one command in this category and that is
CLR. The proper syntax is:
CLR [Fade Number],[Color Number]
The CLR script command clears the screen. It fills the screen with blank
characters using one of 6 different fade techniques. In addition, you may
designate one of 16 background colors for the screen. The following is a list
of screen clear fade numbers and the type they invoke:
1 - Instant Screen Clear
2 - Imploding Screen Clear
3 - Puzzle Piece Screen Clear
4 - Diagonal Wipe Screen Clear
5 - Exploding Screen Clear
6 - Blinds Screen Clear
The following list contains the Color Numbers used in PCX-SHOW.
0 - Black 8 - Dark Gray
1 - Blue 9 - Bright Blue
2 - Green 10 - Bright Green
3 - Cyan 11 - Bright Cyan
4 - Red 12 - Bright Red
5 - Purple 13 - Bright Purple
6 - Brown 14 - Yellow
7 - Gray 15 - White
4. Kalidescope: There is one command in this category and it is KALID. The
proper syntax is:
KALID [Kalidescope Number]
The kalidescope feature of PCX-SHOW gives you the ability to draw colorful
designs on your screen to give your presentation motion and pizzaz. The
Kalidescope Number gives you some control over the appearance of the pattern
drawn. Any number between -32000 and +32000 may be used as the Kalidescope
Number. . . or you may choose not to use any number at all. By using a number,
you guarantee that the same pattern will be drawn each time you run your
PCX-SHOW Script File. This will allow you to create some pretty impressive
screen fades and text screens. See the demo script file PCXSHOW.SPT for
examples of using Kalidescope.
5. Text Display: PCX-SHOW features the ability to display any text you wish
to add to any screen. The text may be in your resident computer font or in the
custom fonts supplied with PCX-SHOW (Helvetica 12 point is included in the
shareware version. You may enlarge or shrink this font using the size command
For your resident computer font there are two script commands used to display
the desired text and an optional color command. They commands are:
COLOR [Foreground Color Number,Background Color Number]
The color command is used for foreground and background color of the text. The
colors may be different than the screen color (For color selection numbers see
the color chart under the CLR command). For example, the script command
COLOR 15,4 would display any text in white letters on a red background.
AT [Row, Column]
The AT script command places the desired text to begin at a specific screen row
and screen column. There are 25 rows and 80 columns on each screen. If you
wanted a line of text to appear in the upper left hand corner you would enter
the following script command: AT 1,1
This is the script command that actually displays the text on your screen.
Your text must be enclosed by quotation marks. Example: If you wanted to
enter text that said ACME Widgets Budget Review the proper syntax would be:
PRINT "ACME Widgets Budget Review"
PCX-SHOW also lets you display a custom font, Helvetica 12 point. The commands
for display text in this font are similar to the commands above.
COLOR [Foreground Color Number,Background Color Number]
The custom fonts use the background color(s) of the screen. You must designate
the foreground color and background color of the text using the color chart.
LOCATE [Row Word,Column Word]
The LOCATE script command is similar to the AT command except that
approximations are used instead of actual row and column numbers. There are 3
Row Words and 3 Column Words. The Row Words are TOP, MIDDLE and BOTTOM. The
Column Words are LEFT, MIDDLE and RIGHT. To display a line of text centered in
the middle of the screen the syntax would be: LOCATE MIDDLE,MIDDLE. To display
a line of text in the upper left hand corner the syntax would be:
This is the script command that actually displays the custom font text on your
screen. Your text must be enclosed by quotation marks. Example: If you wanted
to enter text that said ACME Widgets Budget Review the proper syntax would be:
FPRNT "ACME Widgets Budget Review"
The BOLD script command is used to bold or unbold the custom font.
You may italicize the custom font using this script command.
If you want to enlarge or shrink the size of the custom font you would use the
SIZE script command. The number may be a whole or decimal number. For
example, to double the size of the font the proper syntax is: SIZE 2. If you
wanted the font size to be three quarters of the normal 12 point the proper
syntax would be: SIZE .75
6. Miscellanous Script Commands
If you have a mouse active on your computer you may use it as a pointer and a
remote control device. To activate the mouse the proper syntax is MOUSE ON.
When you turn the mouse on, a pointer will appear in the upper right hand
corner of your screen. You may then move the pointer on your screen as you
move your mouse. To make the pointer disappear the proper syntax is MOUSE OFF.
If the mouse is connected, you may use it as a remote control device wether or
not the pointer is displayed. Clicking the right and center mouse buttons move
forward one screen. Clicking the left mouse button will end the show.
You may create a designated delay between screens by using the DELAY script
command. If you wanted to delay 3 seconds between screen actions the proper
syntax would be: DELAY 3
Pause is similar to delay except that a key press or mouse click is required
for the show to continue. Pressing the left mouse key or the Esc keyboard key
will terminate the show. Pressing any other key will move forward to the next
If you wish to redisplay the entire show from the beginning without having to
rerun PCX-SHOW you would use the LOOP command. This will start the show over
from the very beginning. In the ShareWare version, this means from the opening
ShareWare screen. In the registered version, this means from the first command
in your script file.
BORDER [Color Number]
You may draw a border around any screen with the BORDER script command. You
may also choose a color for that border using the color chart listed earlier in
this documentation. To draw a blue border on your screen the proper syntax
would be: BORDER 1
PCX-SHOW is a copyrighted program of Decisions Software of Phoenix, Arizona.
These programs are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind, either
expressed or implied, including but not limited to the implied warranties of
merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. Decisions Software and
it's employees shall have no responsibility or liability to you or any other
person, persons, or entity with respect to loss or damage caused or alleged to
be caused directly or indirectly by use of these programs or their