Contents of the WINPTR.DOC file
WINPTR.EXE Version 1.0
Douglas Boling March 17, 1992 (Utilities)
WINPTR: will restore your Windows cursor visibility, highlighting the
pointer so it stands out clearly on dim, washed-out LCD screens. In
addition to using it on laptops, you can also use WINPTR for
presentations on large- screen projectors. And on desktop machines, it
can help to view the cursor on a cluttered screen.
To accommodate different display needs and personal tastes,
WINPTR offers a variety of highlighting methods, from large enclosing
blocks to subtler under-arrow bars, both in regular and reverse video.
The enhancement turns on only after a quick cursor movement, and both
the duration and the movement sensitivity are adjustable. Like every
good Windows program, WINPTR remembers the settings you gave it the last
time it was run.
The C source code together with the .RC, .CUR, .ICO, .DEF, and
.MAK files are necessary to compile the program. Compilation requires
the Microsoft C 6.0 Compiler along with the Windows Software Development
Kit (SDK). While the program was developed using Microsoft C, it can be
easily ported to Borland's excellent Borland C++ compiler.
In order to use WINPTR you must put WINPTR.EXE and WINPLIB.DLL
either into your Windows directory or into a directory listed in your
PATH statement. To take the program for a test drive, simply select File
Run from the Program Manager menu and enter WINPTR. If you want to keep
the utility immediately available, you can add it to a Program Manager
group from the File New menu. If you decide you want to start WINPTR
automatically each time you start Windows, you can put WINPTR in the
LOAD= line of WIN.INI.
WINPTR has one optional command line argument. When the program
detects a /i on the command line, it automatically minimizes when it
starts. Automatic minimization is handy if you don't need to change
WINPTR's settings since the last time you used the program. Using the
/i parameter is unnecessary if you load WINPTR on the LOAD= line,
since such programs are minimized automatically.
When you launch WINPTR, a small dialog box containing a few easily
understandable controls will appear. Cursor highlighting is immediately
enabled, as you'll see when you move the cursor rapidly across the
screen. The original cursor arrow will be replaced by an arrow with a
large square black background. As your movements become smaller and more
delicate, the cursor will be restored to its original shape.
Next, move the cursor quickly to a window border. You'll notice that
the highlighted cursor now becomes a four-way size arrow rather than
the standard "11 o'clock" pointer. This tells you when you can grab the
edge of a window even if the cursor is highlighted.
The controls in the dialog box let you modify WINPTR's settings.
The first control is a button that simply toggles between enabling (the
default) and disabling the highlighting. The two sensitivity controls
are scroll bars. The Movement Trigger scroll bar sets the number of
pixels the cursor must travel in a single motion before WINPTR highlights
the cursor. The adjustment range is from 0 to 600 pixels. Note that the
higher you make this setting, the more radical the mouse movement must
be before cursor highlighting kicks in. (This point will be reached more
quickly on fast laptops than on slow models.) Setting the movement
trigger to 0 causes the cursor to be highlighted continuously.
The other scroll bar, labeled Persistence Time, adjusts the time
the cursor highlighting remains in effect after it is switched on.
Keeping the highlight on briefly ensures that you won't lose sight of
the cursor as you slow down to a stop on the screen. The remain-on time
can be adjusted from 0 to just over 4 seconds. A Persistence Time
setting of 0 causes WINPTR to immediately change back to the original
cursor as soon as the movement of the cursor slows to less than the
setting of the Movement Trigger. A 4- second Persistence Time keeps
the cursor highlighted even after several seconds of nonuse.
The shape of the highlighted cursor can be selected by repeatedly
pressing the Set Pointer button. Eight cursors are available for
selection, ranging from a white arrow on a black background to the
standard cursor arrow highlighted by a small underline. The cursor
shape, persistence, and movement values are saved for reuse the next
time the program is activated.
The remaining control buttons in WINPTR call up a help screen
and exit the program. The help screen briefly describes the Movement
Trigger and Persistence Time. It also displays general information
about the program, including the author and copyright notice. Cursor
highlighting is disabled if you press the Exit button.
Douglas Boling is a contributing editor of PC Magazine.