Contents of the WORKLOG.DOC file
W O R K L O G
WORKLOG was written by a freelance corporate communications consultant out
of necessity. It is, basically, a "dedicated" spreadsheet for self-
employed businessmen whose clients demand hourly accounting of services
There is nothing particularly fancy about WORKLOG. Most of the program
source code manages the workscreen and input/output to catch obvious
errors and prevent "accidents." (In this respect WORKLOG is quite bullet-
proof.) Otherwise, anything you can do with WORKLOG, you can do with a
decent spreadsheet program. But if all you want to do is keep logs of
time spent on client projects, calculate the amounts to be charged based
on hourly rates you specify, and print monthly records of time spent on
the projects, then you'll find WORKLOG a more efficient and, I hope,
If your system has a fixed disk, put WORKLOG.COM on a separate directory,
and you'll have a quick, easy way to keep records of the time you spend on
various client projects. You'll be able to see the effect any given
hourly rate has on total billings for the project for the month. And,
when it's time to invoice your client, WORKLOG will print an itemized
listing of your services, which you can use as a "proof-of-performance"
If you do not have a fixed disk, I suggest you put WORKLOG on a floppy
disk of its own. WORKLOG generates data files as it is used (1626 bytes
for each month entered and saved), and you'll need a certain amount of
disk space to run the program and maintain records.
WORKLOG was written in Pascal and will run on IBM Personal Computers and
close compatibles. It should run with any video display configuration,
but, to be frank, it has only been tested with the Monochrome Display and
the Color Graphics Adaptors.
To enter WORKLOG, simply type "WORKLOG" at the DOS prompt and hit .
After a brief program identification the main workscreen will appear. It
is from this screen that you will perform all functions.
You will notice that the two bottom lines of the screen contain all the
available commands. To invoke any of the commands, you simply press the
highlighted letter corresponding to the listed command.
Although the commands are either self-explanatory or self-documenting, you
may want to take a few seconds to read through the following notes.
N - eNter line This will probably be your most frequently used
command. Use it to make an entry on the next
available line. You are limited to a maximum of 24
entries per log. If the log is already full, WORKLOG
will not let you make any more entries. If you
haven't yet entered anything, WORKLOG will enter the
heading entry mode and will not allow you to enter on
line 1 until you complete the heading entry. (See "H"
below). Enter any alphanumeric string up to 6
characters long in the DATE field (e.g., "Mon 12").
Enter any alphanumeric string up to 48 characters long
in the SERVICES RENDERED field. Enter the amount of
time you spent in hours in the HOURS field. WORKLOG
keeps hours in 2-decimal-place numbers, so, for
example, "1 hour, 45 minutes" should be entered as
"1.75". WORKLOG will not let you skip any fields
because an entry would be meaningless without all
three fields. Neither will WORKLOG let you enter
weird hours, such as negative numbers or numbers
greater than 24. (Try it!)
E - Edit line "Edit" is probably the wrong word here. This command
allows you to alter an entry by typing in a new one.
When you call this command, WORKLOG will ask you which
line you want to change. Enter the desired line
number, then proceed as with the "N" (enter new line)
command. If there is no entry at the specified line
number, you'll get an appropriate slap on the wrist.
D - Delete line No explanation needed here. But be careful: WORKLOG
cannot "undo" this kind of delete.
I - Insert line Keeping entries in chronological order, or any other
order you choose, is entirely your responsibility.
WORKLOG is not smart enough to understand whatever
notation you may be using in the date field. That's
where this command comes in handy. When you invoke
it, you'll be prompted to enter the line number at
which you wish to insert an entry. After that, the
procedure for making the insert is identical to that
for entering a new line (see "N" above). When the
entry is completed, WORKLOG will automatically re-
number the subsequent lines. If you specify a line
number with no entry, WORKLOG will assume you still
want to make an entry and will default to the first
available line. As with "N" (enter new line), WORKLOG
will not allow you to insert if the log is already
C - Chg. rate When you first start a new log, the hourly rate will
be set to zero. You must use this command to enter
your hourly rate if you want WORKLOG to automatically
calculate the total time charge for the project. You
can always change the rate at a later time by again
using this command. WORKLOG will not accept bizarre
entries (such as negative numbers) in this field. And
the maximum value you can enter as an hourly rate is
$999.99. (If you charge more than that per hour, you
don't need this program.)
G - new loG This command lets you start a new log without having
to exit and re-enter WORKLOG. If you haven't already
saved the current on-screen log, you'll be given an
opportunity to do so. (See "S" below.)
L - Load Use this command to call up an existing log. This
must be a file with an .WLG extension previously
created by WORKLOG using the Save command, and it must
reside on the same disk and directory as WORKLOG.
(See "S" below.) When you enter the filename, WORKLOG
assumes the .WLG extension, so you don't need to type
it in. If you haven't saved any on-screen log at the
time you invoke this command, you'll be given the
opportunity to do so.
S - Save You can save your on-screen log at any time by using
this command. WORKLOG will accept any DOS filname up
to 8 characters. Don't bother entering an extension
because WORKLOG automatically adds a ".WLG" and will
not accept any characters after the first eight. If
you had previously loaded a log from a disk file and
you've made some changes or additions to it during
this session, WORKLOG will ask you if you want to save
your updated log back to the same filename. If you
answer affirmatively, WORKLOG will rename the old
version with a .BAK extension before saving the new.
The same is true if you specify a file that already
exists. The only time WORKLOG overwrites a file is
when you save back to an existing filename that
already has a .BAK version. In that case the old .BAK
will be wiped out by the new.
P - Page You are limited to a maximum of 24 entries per log.
(If you need more than that, you'll have to start a
second log for the same project and month.) But
WORKLOG can only display either the first or last
twelve entries at one time. If you have more than
twelve entries, you can toggle back and forth between
pages 1 and 2 using this command. Most of the time
page toggling will be automatic. For example, if you
want to insert at line 15 but are looking at page 1,
WORKLOG will switch over to page 2 for you so you can
see what you're doing.
H - edit Heading If you want to alter your log heading (client,
project, month, and year), you can do so with this
command. When you start a new log, this is the first
command you should invoke. In fact, if you try to
make a line entry without first entering heading
information, WORKLOG will automatically go into the
heading entry mode. (See "N" above.) You can enter
any alphanumeric string up to 47 characters long for
the CLIENT and PROJECT fields. For the MONTH field,
simply enter a number between 1 and 12. The YEAR
field only accepts 4-digit whole numbers between 1900
and 9999. (We should all live so long.) For MONTH
and YEAR you also have the option of entering "C".
This makes a call to DOS, and if the system date has
been properly set, you'll end up with the current
month and year in the respective fields.
R - pRint Sorry I couldn't use "P" for this, but "Page" gets the
letter because it is bound to be a more frequently
called command. When you select this command, you'll
be presented with two options. I did this because I
was too lazy to study up on the variations in printer
control codes. My printer (an IBM Quietwriter) can
print extended ASCII characters (above 127 decimal),
so I used them to create a more appealing printout.
If your printer can do the same, try entering "Y" at
the print option question. I think I've avoided using
any control codes that are unique to the Quietwriter
printer, so most printers with the extended character
set should work. If your printer produces garbage
characters or goes berserk with this option, enter "N"
at the question. This latter option prints with
unfancy characters, like "-" and "=", so there
shouldn't be any problems.
X - eXit Another self-explanatory command. If you forgot to
save your log, WORKLOG will give you the opportunity
to do so before putting you back in DOS.
Using WORKLOG should be fairly instinctive. Single-letter entries, such
as the commands, do not require termination with the key.
Everything else does. The backspace key does what you'd expect it to do
when you're making field entries.
But I've added a few features that'll make life easier, especially on
those occasions when you come to the realization that you've messed up but
good. Commands with potentially annoying consequences have additional
steps that give you the chance to get out before you regret the move. You
can start any single field over again by hitting the key. And, most
fields give you the opportunity to cancel and undo the entire command by
entering a "U".
WORKLOG does not pretend to perform fancy calculations. Specifically, it
adds and multiplies. And unless you have the need to keep logs of time
spent on multiple projects, it's quite useless. But if, like me, you are
self-employed and have clients who require you to account for your time,
you may find WORKLOG handy. As I stated at the outset, I wrote WORKLOG
out of necessity. It does the job for me, and I'm pleased that it gives
me yet another justification for owning a PC. I'd be even more pleased if
someone else out there finds this program remotely useful.
If you do find WORKLOG convenient and useful, I would appreciate a
voluntary contribution of, say, $15. If you've done any programming, you
know that even a "simple" program like this represents many hours of work.
(A worklog of the time I spent developing WORKLOG would make long, boring
reading.) If my efforts help make your life easier or give your business
a look of greater professionalism, a monetary show of appreciation would
encourage me to continue in this vein.
I am sure there are many ways in which I can improve WORKLOG. I look
forward to receiving comments and suggestions from users.
Please send any comments, inquiries, and/or contributions to...
Harron K. Appleman
25 Waterside Plaza
New York, NY 10010
I can also be reached via CompuServe (ID# 73047,576).