Contents of the TEXTSHOW.DOC file
* TEXT-SHOW 3.0 *
* ShareWare Version *
* Documentation/Information *
TEXT-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 text screens saved or captured with the included
TXTCAP.COM resident screen capture utility. TEXT-SHOW features include
multiple screen fades and segues, special screen effects, text display using
customized and computer fonts, border and screen clearing effects and more.
The text screen is one of the may be used by any computer system, with or
without a color monitor and/or graphics card. The program will run on any IBM
compatible computer with a minimum of 256K of RAM memory.
The files included in this ShareWare version are:
TXSHO3.EXE - The Text-Show program
TEXTSHOW.SPT - Demonstration Script File
TEXTSHOW.DOC - This documentation file
TXTCAP.COM - Screen Capture Program
WMTELL*.COM - Sample Music Files
ORDER.FRM - Order Form
*.SCR - Several captured screen files
used in the demo Text-Show
TEXT-SHOW Demonstration Show
A demonstration of many of the features of TEXT-SHOW is included in this
ShareWare version. To view the demo, change to the directory where the
TEXT-SHOW files are stored. From that directory type TXSHO3 at the DOS
prompt and press the Enter key. A brief ShareWare screen will appear. In a
few seconds, the demonstration program will begin.
TEXT-SHOW SHAREWARE VERSION
The ShareWare concept is quite simple. Try out TEXT-SHOW for a short period
of time (30 days maximum). If you would like to order TEXT-SHOW, simply send
in the Registration/Order form included with this file (ORDER.FRM) along with
your payment. If not, erase the files, discontinuing all use of the program.
The ShareWare version of TEXT-SHOW is identical to the registered version with
a few exceptions.
1. A brief ShareWare screen appears at the beginning and end of each
session of TEXT-SHOW. These screens are removed in the registered
2. The registered version includes a professionally printed and bound
user manual. The documentation in this manual is more in depth.
3. The registered version comes with Run-Time Modules which allow you
unlimited distribution of shows you create with TEXT-SHOW with no
royalties or fees.
We plan to continually add to and improve the TEXT-SHOW series of programs.
Plans call for adding new and unique screen fades/segues, allow for user
queries, and so forth. Registration will guarantee that you receive the
latest version of TEXT-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 TEXT-SHOW. The order form is
contained in the file ORDER.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 TEXT-SHOW.
All orders and inquiries should be directed to:
P.O. Box 31418
Phoenix, AZ 85046
Minimum hardware requirements for using TEXT-SHOW are an IBM compatible
computer, DOS 2.xx or higher, 256K RAM memory and a monitor.
This ShareWare documentation file contains information on how to use TEXT-SHOW
to create your own customized screen presentations. It covers each of the
features available in TEXT-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 TEXT-SHOW.
If you haven't viewed the demonstration of TEXT-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 TEXT-SHOW files. At the DOS
and press the Enter key. The program will load and run the demonstration
A. VIDEO MODE: TEXT-SHOW uses the standard ASCII text mode of your computer.
While not required, presentations may be viewed on systems that contain CGA,
EGA, VGA and Super VGA graphics cards. It is important to have an
understanding of how TEXT-SHOW stores and displays screen files.
To accomplish the nifty screen fades and segues, TEXT-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.
There is NO limit to the total number of 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 load up to 5 screens at any one time. This is the maximum
amount that may be in memory in this ShareWare version. To load more, simply
load new screens in one of the 5 screen slots. The size of each captured
screen file is 4007 bytes.
HOW TEXT-SHOW WORKS
You interface your captured text screens with TEXT-SHOW using a proprietary
Script format. The Script format is simply a set of one or two word commands
that tells TEXT-SHOW what you want to do. An example of a Script file is the
demonstration file TEXTSHOW.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 text screens you wish to include, you
need to tell TEXT-SHOW when and how you want them displayed. You may also use
the Script to display text (using custom or computer fonts), clear screens or
draw screen borders, pop up windows/boxes, make sounds, etc.
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 TXSHO3.EXE file must be in
the same drive/directory. If no file name is given when TXSHO3 is entered at
the DOS prompt, the program looks for a default file named TEXTSHOW.SPT.
That's what we named our demo Script. If TEXT-SHOW can't find the Script file
it will tell you.
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 TXSHO3 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 TEXT-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 & Effects
3. Clearing the Screen
4. BIG Fonts
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 SCR 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 SCR file named MYFILE and assign
it as file number one the syntax would be: LOAD MYFILE.SCR 1
You may also designate a drive and directory if your SCR file is not in the
same directory as the TXTSHO.EXE program. For example, if your file is located
on drive C in a directory named SCRPICS, then the proper syntax would be:
LOAD C:\SCRPICS\MYFILE.SCR 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 all SCR screen
file information from memory. It does not affect the display screen.
This command identifies the loaded SCR screen file you wish to 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 & Effects: These commands actually display's your loaded
SCR screen file on to your screen. There are two commands in this category.
They are FADES & SHAKE. The proper syntax for the FADES command is:
There are 17 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 - Explode
2 - Slide Left
3 - Slide Right
4 - Slide Up
5 - Slide Down
6 - Horizontal Blinds
7 - Puzzle Pieces
8 - Radar Sweep
9 - Page Roll
10 - Vertical Blinds
11 - Window Wipe
12 - Fast Dissolve
13 - Slow Dissolve
14 - Open Curtain
15 - Close Curtain
16 - Side Wipe
17 - Instant On (Entire Screen appears instantaneously)
18 - Vertical Split
19 - Squeeze
20 - Snake
21 - Pour Top To Bottom
The SHAKE command is a special effects script command. It will shake your
video display for the number of seconds you wish. View the demo to see how we
used this special effects command.
3. Clearing the Screen: There are two commands in this category. They are
CLS and SEND 6. The proper syntax for CLS is:
The CLS script command clears the screen. It fills the screen with blank
characters. You may designate colors for the screen with the COLOR command
COLOR [Foreground Color Number,Background Color Number]
The color command is used for foreground and background color of the screen.
For example, the script command COLOR 15,4 would display any text in white
letters on a red background.
The following list contains the Color Numbers used in TEXT-SHOW.
0 - Black 4 - Red 8 - Dark Gray 12 - Bright Red
1 - Blue 5 - Purple 9 - Bright Blue 13 - Bright Purple
2 - Green 6 - Brown 10 - Bright Green 14 - Yellow
3 - Cyan 7 - Gray 11 - Bright Cyan 15 - White
To invoke blinking simply add 16 to the number in the chart above. For
example, the script command COLOR 31,4 would display any text in blinking
white letters on a red background.
This command will send blank characters to memory. You then may use any of
the 17 fades with the FADES command to clear the screen using the fade effect.
5. Text Display: TEXT-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 BIG Font supplied with TEXT-SHOW.
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 above). 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"
TEXT-SHOW also lets you display custom Big Fonts. These would mainly be used
for titles and special effects. The commands for display text in this font
are similar to the commands above.
BCOL [Foreground Color Number]
Big Fonts use the current background color of the screen. You must designate
the foreground color of the font text using the color chart. A special color
number of -1 (negative one) is used when you desire a multi-colored font.
BAT [Row Word,Column Word]
The BAT script command is identical to the AT command.
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"
BCHR [ASCII Character Number]
This command allows you to display your Big Font using any of the 255 ASCII
Characters. See the demo script for sample characters.
This will adjust the size of the Big Font. One is a normally Big Font. Two
is a Huge Font.
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 cursor will appear in the upper right hand
corner of your screen. You may then move the cursor on your screen as you
move your mouse. To make the cursor 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 TEXT-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 [ASCII Character 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 single line border on your screen the proper
syntax would be: BORDER 1 To draw a double line border the proper syntax
would be BORDER 2. To draw a border comprised of ASCII Character 219 the
proper syntax would be BORDER 219.
BOX [Row Begin,Column Begin,Row End,Column End,Character #]
You may create Pop-Up windows/boxes using this script command. There are five
(5) parameters that must be entered. Row Begin is the upper left corner of
where you want the box displayed; Column Begin is the beginning column number;
Row End is the lower portion of the box; Column End is the ending column number
of the box. Character # is used to designate the type of frame you wish to
display. You may use any of the ASCII 255 characters as this number.
Character numbers 1-4 are special designated characters. They are as follows:
1 = Single Line Frame 3 = Double/Single Mixed Frame
2 = Double Line Frame 4 = Single/Double Mixed Frame
To designate the color of the box, you first would issue the COLOR script
command. The first number (foreground) represents the color of the frame and
the second number (background) represents the color of the box. For example,
if you wish to draw a red Pop-Up box with a white double line frame beginning
at Row 10, Column 10 and ending at Row 15, Column 40, the proper script
Please view the demo TEXT-SHOW script (TEXTSHOW.SPT) for more examples on using
and drawing Pop-Up boxes/windows.
PAINT [Row Begin,Column Begin,Row End,Column End]
This is similar to the BOX command, except that the purpose is to re-color the
current screen without destroying the display. The parameters needed are the
same as mentioned above. The paint color is set by using the COLOR script
command. For example, if you wished to paint the top half of the screen with
white characters on a red background the commands would be:
See the demo script TEXTSHOW.SPT for more examples on using the PAINT command.
You may use this command when you desire a sound to highlight a screen or
message. There are five distinct sounds included in this version of TEXT-SHOW.
All sounds are relatively short in duration. The number following the Sound
script command must be between 1 and 5.
This command is a built in shell feature of TEXT-SHOW and may be used to run
other executable (.EXE or .COM) programs without disturbing your screen
presentation in TEXT-SHOW. This command was originally created to allow users
to play music while a screen from TEXT-SHOW appears on the monitor. The demo
script, TEXTSHOW.SPT, gives an example of using the RUN command in this
fashion. You may also use the command to run any program. When the shelled
program ends, you are returned to your TEXT-SHOW where you left off. For
example, if you wish to run a program named EXAMPLE.COM from within your
TEXT-SHOW, the proper syntax would be: RUN EXAMPLE.COM. Be sure there is a
space between the command RUN and the full filename of the program.
TXTCAP.COM is memory resident screen capture program. The purpose of this
program is to capture any text screen you can display on your monitor in the
Bload, Text-Show, SCR file format.
To use this program, simply type TXTCAP.COM at the DOS prompt. You will see a
brief message appear on your screen. The message tells you that the program
has been loaded, is memory resident and may be invoked by pressing the Ctrl-F9
HOW TO CAPTURE SCREENS: When you have a text screen displayed that you wish
to capture, press the Ctrl-F9 key combination (while holding down the Ctrl
key press the F9 function key). A prompt will appear at the upper left hand
corner of your screen. This prompt asks you to enter a filename. The
filename must contain no more than 8 valid DOS filename characters and should
be followed with a SCR extension. After you have entered the filename, press
the Enter key. The program will then capture the graphics screen in SCR
Text-Show file format. The captured file will reside in the current drive and
If after pressing the Ctrl-F9 key combination you determine that you really
don't want to save the screen, simply press the Esc key. Your screen will
return and the file will NOT be saved.
To remove the ScreenCapture program from memory, simply type TXTCAP /U
at the DOS prompt and press the Enter key. This will unload (remove) the
program from memory, i.e., it will no longer be memory resident.
OTHER PROGRAMS FROM DECISIONS
DECISIONS Software also offers PCX-SHOW & Utilities. PCX-SHOW is a graphic
screen presentation program using the PCX file format. Like TEXT-SHOW, it uses
multiple screen fades, seques and special effects but the screens it displays
are EGA/VGA graphic screens. The program comes with a series of PCX file
utilities including a graphics screen capture program; a utility that converts
an ASCII screen to a graphics screen and saves it in PCX format; a PCX file
viewing/printing program and more. See the file ORDER.FRM for details.
TEXT-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