MAY/JUNE ’87

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The Editor’s Forum

‘Thanks to Tim Stoddard, I had the chance to “play” with a 2X81 the past two months. But, this was no or- dinary 2X. Tim generously loaned me his "souped-up" 2X81 to demo at the TS Computer Fest. This computer contained the internal 64k RAM modification that is described in his issue; plus attached to the rear buss, was his

Proto-type D.A.M. board (Data Acquisition Module). If you remember (see Jan/Feb '87 and March/April '87 issues Of TDM) the board contains an analog-to digital con- verter, a digital-to-analog converter, anda real time

Special Information for TDM Subscribers

WHEN 10 RENEW? To determine your expiration date, read the information in the upper-right corner of your shipping label (front cover). As an example: “May/87" means that the May/June 1987 issue will be your last one until you renew. If you forget, we will send you a reminder notice, but an early renewal is appreciated. You can use the form on page 38 if you like.

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TAG

MAY/JUNE 87 Vol. 3 No. 4

clock. With the software that Tim had written, our demo could measure a room temperature reading from a small Probe mounted at the top of the D.A.M. board, and dis- Play the reading on the screen. Also, a voltage in the range of 0 to 2.55 could be selected and typed in at the keyboard. The selected value would be printed on the screen and could be measured with a meter at two pins on the D.A.M. board. Not to mention that the real-time clock continuosly displayed the date and time. All of this operated at the same time on just one little ‘ol 2x81.

However, the most amazing thing was that Tim's computer didn't behave like the ZX81 I used to have. Let. me explain. When Stephanie and I arrived at the Holiday Inn on Priday, the day before the show, we had a chance to set up early. I went ahead and put together the computer demo to make sure everything was going to work properly. Accidently, the 2X was left plugged-in over- nite. The next morning (the day of the show) when I discovered it, the computer was just barely warm. It “fired up" up ok...no problems. During that day, the guests arrived and literally crammed into the exhibit room. With all of the computers and monitors (and warm bodies), the room temperature soared to 85°F (until some kind soul fixed the air conditioner). The 2X81 never once overheated or crashed it's program during the entire Fest! Something could be said of Tim's efficient internal 64k RAM design and the Proper heat-sinking he used.

Along with the RAM upgrade article, we have news and photographs from the 1987 Midwest TS Computer Fest. Attending the Fest has made this issue come out a bit jate. For this I apologize...but we should be back on track next issue. Also, a few of our features have been Postponed until the next issue. For example Paul Bingham was to have the second installment of his CLASSY FRONT END series published in this issue. But I gave Paul some time off for a very good reason--he had a new addition to his family. A new son, Spencer Christian Bingham, was born on April 21st. Congratulations to a Proud Dad and Mom. We'll see Paul back again next issue.

In closing, I might add that if there is ‘something special you would like to see printed in an upcoming

issue (perhaps an article or program for your computer in an area of special interest), just drop me a short note, and I'll see what I can do. Until then, "Happy Computing" and “don't give up on the chip!"

Sincerely,

Tim Woods

Managing Editor ‘Time Designs Magazine Co.

Editor: Tim Woods Assistant Editor: Stephanie Woods Edltorlal Assistant/Production: 0... Woods

BEIEA}

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TS206S DISK DRIVE systems

Dear Tim,

T have several questions/conments which may be of interest to other readers of TIME DESIGNS. I don't think I've seen any comprehensive article on the various disk systems that are available for the ‘Timex Sinclair 2068, I have seen isolated advertisers's ref- erences and offerings on several of these, but I don't really know which way to jump to get the best deal of these for my purposes.

have the Russell Speech Synthesizer for the 2x81. I've seen no reference on adaptation of this to the TS2068. I also have the TREE System FORTH ROM for the 2X61: I've seen no adaptation or anything similar for the 7S2068.

Tam still enjoying your magazine, as the best and now almost only source of Sinclair/Timex info and news.

Sincerely, louis G. Dooley Ocala, FL

Editon: Good questions. I'LL tackte them in reverse onder. First, the best source of FORTH Language in- formation for Sénctacn computers in the U.S., is to contact Gary Ganger of the Dayton (Ohio) Microcomputer Association. He 4s the founder of the FORTH Interest Group (FIG), a sub-group of DMA. Gary is very fanitian with versions of the Language for the 2X81/2068 and Spectrum, and £8 wilting to heep. You can contact hin by writing to: $12 Hedaich St., New Cartiste, Ohio, 45344. As for your second question, I'm gure’ it is possible, but haven't seen on heard of anyone adapting 4t to the TS2068. Have you tried contacting Russert Electronics? Perhaps one of our readers have some én- formation. Finally, the topic of disk drives. Indeed We are quitty of not providing any major foLtow up £0 antickes we have published in the past 0f avaitable dish drive systems gor the TS2068. 1 hope to correct that very soon. In the meantine, here's a quick over- view on what's out there. A total of give diggerent Systems have been released gor the standard (non- Spectrunized) 2068. Two of the systens axe no Longer available (Ramex Mittenia K and Zebra's FOD-3000), which Leaves the 2068 user with three to choose from. They are the Aerco FD-68 (Box 18093, Austin, Texas 78760), the Larkin Disk Intergace (RR#2, Navan, Ont., Canada, K48-149), and the OLiger Disk Drive Interface (11601 whédbey Dr., Cumber£and, IN 46229). If shoutd be understood that the three models come as an én- terface circuit card and you mist provide the drives/ case/power supply gor the drives (Aerco does offer an optional disk drive package atong with their inter- face). Your best bet on drives would be to pick up a copy of COMPUTER SHOPPER, oX consult your Local TS deater. (I know of one, RUG Enterprises, that stocks drives). woutd be wise to write gor ingornation and prices on the three systems, in onder to compare features, ete. Some of them offer "extras", such as an RGB monitor interface, or Spectrum compatébitity, and MMT "magic button” SAVES. Tf you have Spectrum’ emu~ Aated your 2068 and woutdn't mind a genuine Spectrum dish drive system, you might want to check out the new DISCIPLE Incergace (Rockgort Products, §1 Church Road, London, England, Mud 4DP) which se£es fon 289.95 in the U.K. Atong with a disk interface, the Diseipte also has a built-in Centronics printer interface, joy- Stich ports, networking capabilities, and more. Quite an impressive unit that Looks a Lot Like the Sinclair Interface One. T think we wile be seeing more of this one in the months £0 come. Other Spectrum dish drive Antergaces are avactable, such as the OPUS Déscovery. You were right by stating you want a disk drive systen that would (it your particular needs. That's the hey to setection...and be sure to shop akound, and (dg

sible) ask questions of other users who have such systens,

Lay

@L NEWS FROM THE U.K.

Dear Hr. Woods,

From this side of the pond a number of QL facts have cone to light:

1, Digital Precision is about to launch it's ov desktop publishing package. 2. All those who paid in advance for a "FUTURA" machine have had their money re-funded because, though advertised months ago, it appears not to have reached the circuit board stage. 3, The "THOR 20" complete with 68020 and an optional 68881 fp co-processor is at the circuit board stage and expected to be seen in mid-May (time will tell). Projected prices are £425 (without 68881) and £600 (with) for a 12.7 Miiz version. 16.7 MHz versions will be twice this. 4. QRAM Utilities, the front end for the FUTURA (as was/is/maybe), appears to have been written not to work with programs compiled using the DP Supercharge and Turbo SuperBASIC compilers due to bad feelings between the companies. 5. A new adventure writing system with real-time simiation surfaced re- cently. 6. It is rumoured that the Ql's multi-tasking QO0S operating system is not actually omed by any- body, unsike SuperBASIC. Several companies are playing ‘safe though, and are producing new compatible systems. Complete Q00S disassemblies are available from 3 nunber of companies including Sandy.

All the best with Toa.

Yours Sincerely, Richard Howe

Proprietor ARK DISTRIBUTION

Isle of Wight, United Kingdom

LOAD LOADER

BY

WILLIAM C. ANDREWS

To dress up the moniter screen while Losdin

4 progran 1 use the following short program. LINE 4 i the title to be displayed (up to 28 CHRS). LINE 9 1a the actual program name ——liait 10 cine (7 With BU a after the #9. LINE 18 for a machine code Ct meded). LINE 11 te the loading title of this program. Edit LINE ty del

1 BORDER 1: PAPER 1: CLS 2 LET Le LET Kee ——

4 LET Ne="77"

5S PRINT AT 4, (31-(LEN NS+4))/ 2) PAPER 2) INK’ Oy BRIGHT 1) ""; K8¢ TO LEN Ne+4) ; "0

@ PRINT AT 5, (31-(LEN NS+6))/ 25 PAPER 2) INK'@} BRIGHT 1 §_INK 75"3 "3NS;* NK Os"

7 PRINT AT 6, 2) PAPER 2) INK'®} BRIGHT 1 L8¢ TO LEN Nea); "am

8 PRINT AT 10,115 PAPER 6} IN Kk 94 FLASH 15" LOADING "; FLASH ®) PAPER @;AT 15,9)" PLEASE WAIT

9 INK 13 LoaD "22" 18 LOAD "27"CODE 11 REM SAVE "77" LINE 1

More Letters Next Page...

LETTERS

MILLENNIA K

Where are the MILLENNIA K users? Surely most of you out there renember seeing an ad or two about a disk drive systen for the 72063 that bragged about the disk operating system that would allow. 1,000/000 byte storage on a single disk. This letter is directed to the ones of you who had the nerve to fork out the $450 of 90 required to obtain this reputably fabulous isk system fron the now defunct RAMEX.

The brag turned out to be fact! The system turned ‘out to be one of the easiest disk systens, to date, to use. Tt uses all the tape comands and ‘the "extra" commands like FORMAT, CAT, ERASE, MOVE, etc. Not only that, it allows the use of "sequential files" which few Sinclair users have had the opportunity to use. However, you already know that because you bought one, right?

Tf you are reading this letter, the publishers of TIME DESIGNS have seen fit to open the new arena of SPOOS information. The desire is to provide aupport to sone new orphans in the form of exploration of the in= terface and the supporting SPD0S. If there are any questions about methods of implenenting progcans using Sequential files or expanding the comand list, or getting programs to work with the system, just write in and I'11 do my best to answer the query or find the ansver from some of you.

342 Trotter Court Sanford, Plorida 32771

QL USERS PLEA: “TO BE OR NOT TO BET”

HACKERS ALERT. The Bard hit the Ql nail right on the head when he asked, “to be or not to be, that is the question". Fairly put, the question—-is the OL a capable User "can do" computer, or are we “hacking” it to death?

Tg the QL is such a good programer/hacker's machine, then how come there aren't any "made in the USA" programs? We need Anerican programs designed for the American non-progranmer User's use! This includes @ "load and useable” database program, comprehensive ‘accounting and bookkeeping programs for business, non~ Profit church and home use, anda lot more. ‘The only ifference between a programer/hacker and the non— progcaner User, is that the hacker is a £ suff cient" user.

If, the knowledgeable hackers would stop their "self sufficiency" long enough to weite some of these needed programs, it would re-vitalize the Ql's per- ception. By 80 doing, they could give our OL the "Dual. Life Expectancy" that it deserves. So hackers, ask not what the QL can do for YOU, rather what YOU can do for the QL! If YOU don't, who will? Do it before it is too late.

Kenton Garrett Lansing, KS

Editon: Your points are welt taken. But Let me raise an issue which you may not have thought of. The actual numbers of OL's currently in use here in the U.S, (not £0 mention the number of bonagide hacker/programer! s) 4s very Low. T have heard that estinates range beween 2 to 5 thousand units. That factor may have something 40 do with the Lack of user-oriented "serious" 40ft- ware. Yet in many European countries (i.e., France, Germany, ete.), ten times mone Q's were bold...and explains why’ they are reteasing a substantiag amount 0f both hardware and softeare’ support. Perhaps your Letter with strike some chords and stir some interest. T couldn't agree with you more about the need sor pri ghans that ane geared 20 the user rather the engineer-types, or require one to digest documentation that suspiciously Looks Like it was written in Latin.

HURRAH FOR NOVELSOFT

Recently I purchased TIMACHINE from Novelaoft, Tey as I might, the program wouldn't LOAD; it was the first tape I have ever been unable to LOAD or SAVE immediately. I wrote Novelsoft detailing the steps I had taken, along with some print-outs of various seg- ments I was able to access, asking for their help in resolving the problem,

Shortly after, I received from David Ridge, what he believed to be the answer to the problem, along with a request that should I have any further diffi- culty, to contact him for further assistance. Every- thing worked fine.

I thought it would be nice, were you to include some mention of this in your colum, It ia very re~ assuring that TS users can deal with people as respon—

ible as Novelsoft, even in a market as limited as the ‘Timex Sinclair.

Yours truly, Francis C. Dupre Southampton, PA

APRIL FOOLER

Well, I guess it's time to renew my subscription and it's my pleasure. I look forward to each issue of ‘TOM and I thank you for keeping the faith in the 1S conputer systems.

was going to write about the modem program in your last issue, about how 1 interfaced the simple modem to my 2068 and how I ran the program and about how I connected with dozens of mail boxes. I won't do that but I hope next year somebody comes up with a fantastic APRIL FOOLS gag for the author of that article.

Warren Tucker Vallejo, CA

NEW CAR SHOPPER

Dear Tim,

Here is a little program I wrote to compare car prices and figure approximate loan payments. It tells je I can't afford to buy the cars I already ovn!

Paul Hill ‘SINCUS NES Johnson City, NY

S,8SM, gata from CONSUMER REPO ar faget 2803NPUT "car Name “:nsi” Hode

t 2img 20 PRINT n$: PRINT ms: INPUT Sticker Price "ss

30 PRINT. "Sticker prices"; FNBUT “Cost Factor “sc: LeT ¢ i100: "Ler be:

ate cost sri0eat

ppt;” Deaier cost Fact or 4, EET oprssopteacr: Ler Gost Lost soers’ ‘8 PRINT “Dealer Cost For car "Cost: LET sticksstope: REM check sticker price for destinat fon charges 20° PR! 44

ch-cogt- LEr isamstosts(.Seger) Lop°PRint “approx: Busing Brice

NPayment /Trade—In

Value “;dow: LET loan=(oan-dow

420 Ler’ toan=toan+isates tax if

app licapley

125 REM ge:

ales tax Tigure applies, otherwi Program Witt not work propert

LET r2=.205: Le

TET (oand=(toans(rastoan)) 7 PRINT "S vear Loan Payment. =

5 loans

170 REM add printouts to carry

around wi

3

you 35 You shop!

New Releases

Last issue we reported on an external keyboard in- terface that uses the cartridge port of the $2068, available from John Mathewson (1852 Appleford St., Gloucester, Ontario, Canada KlJ 674). John has been busy designing new peripherals for the 7S2068, and now has several other new items. The “Sound Booster" plugs into the rear port and amplifies both the BEEP and SOUND in- formation sufficient to drive an 8 ohm, 8" speaker, or there is a low level output provided to drive another power amp or stereo amp. The on-board 9 volt battery helps to reserve the computer's internal power for other devices. A feed-thru buss is also included. The "Sound Booster" board is priced at $41.50 U.S. funds (battery and speaker are not included). An RGB interface is now available for $34.95 U.S. funds, and provides an output to drive any RGB-type color monitors. Press-on type Key Caps for external keyboards are available for $5 a set. A "Cartridge Adapter" card has also been designed to plug any cartridge into the rear buss of the 752068 whenever the cartridge dock is occupied. Write for further information.

Anew machine code utility software package is available for the ZX81/TS1000/7S1500 called KAPKIT 1000. A number of special routines are included that will save the ZX/TS programmer time and allow greater flexibility. Move whole programs or variables to high or low RAM and back, convert hex to decimal, delete more than one pro- gram line at a time, and mich more. A cassette tape and complete documentation are available from: LST Software, Box 62, Alcester, SD 57001, for $14.95 plus $1.95 for SH. The program is also available from E.Arthur Brown.

You may have noticed that Commodore's inexpensive 1520 Printer/Plotter has dropped in price. One of our Jong time readers (and occaisonal contributor), John McMichael, has devised an interface and companion soft- ware driver to operate the 1520 with a Timex Sinclair 2068. The result is high-resolution four color graphic plotting with the Timex, using simple LPRINT commands. For complete details and prices, send a legal SASE to: John McMichael, 1710 Palmer Dr., Laramie, WY 82070. He will even provide you with an address where you can buy the plotter for $49.95.

PC-DRAW is a software package just released by a Promising new company called MDM Enterprises. The im- pressive new program allows the user to design detailed Printed circuit board artwork, which can then be printed and photographed, providing a negative for circuit board etching. Circuit drawing is made easy with joystick control, and the user-friendly documentation takes you through the procedures step by step. PC-DRAW supports all of the popular TS printer interfaces and is set up for Epson compatible printers. Similar programs for other computers are expensive. This one sells for $19.95 plus $3.00 (total order) SéH and is exclusively avail- able from: Knighted Computers, 707 Highland St., Fulton, NY 13069, tel. (315) 593-8219.

CompuServe Information Service has introduced a new graphics medium, that will eventually replace the RLE graphics (for information on this subject, reference Stan Lenke's article on RLE in the Jan/Feb '87 issue of TDM). The new standard is called GIF (for Graphics In- terchange Format). With the appropriate software, a picture file could be "downloaded" via a modem from CompuServe, then displayed on the screen or sent to a printer. GIF.allows for full color and high resolution on many types of personal computers. Larry Wood of the Picture Forum (GO PICS) on CompuServe, recently told TDM

s

that information would be released to Sinclair pro- grammers to see if a GIF decoder or encoder program is feasible with our computers.

Speaking of telecommunications, the second edition of “The Guide To T/S Telecommunications" by Pete Fischer and Steve Ishii is out...and is it ever a real gem! The new deluxe and expanded edition hardly resembles it's forerunner. The guide was re-printed using a laser printer and is mich more readable. The front cover is actually an RLE graphic that was passed around to a number of TS users who added their own design, resulting in an interesting collage of pictures from around the U.S. Well worth the $5 price. Get your copy from: Pete Pischer, P.O. Box 2002, Tempe, AZ 85281. Pete showed his second edition guide for the first time, at the Midwest TS Computer Fest in Indianapolis.

‘This RLE graphic was specially produced for the cover of

the new deluxe edition of "the Guide To 1/S Telecommni- cations". Several TS users fron around the U.S. took pact in drawing the graphics that make up the picture.

Having trouble figuring out the new tax laws that were recently passed by our U.S Congress? A special 2068 Program just might be your ticket. Herb Bowers, a former Federal Auditor and private tax preparer has put to- gether a comprehensive tax software package that con- tains two separate programs. "THE NEW TAX LAW AND YOU" is priced at $12.00 postage paid, and is available from the author: Herb Bowers, Sr., 2588 Woodshire Circle, Chesapeake, VA 23323, tel. (804) 487-5924. Be a tax "expert" and impress your friends with the astonishing accuracy that your 72068 can calculate the new tax code.

Charles Stelding has a 1S2068 desktop publishing software package, and now has released a version just for Olivetti 2300 InkJet printer owners (The WIDJUP Company's "Winkjet 1" printing utility is required). For a sample print-out and demonstration of what the program can do, send a legal SASE to obtain information and prices to: Charles Stelding, 1415 South Baxter, Myler, ‘TK 757016

Have you wanted to really put ARCHIVE to work (the database program that comes "free" with a QL), without a lot of programming headaches? You may want to check out the ARCHIVIST and MAILMERGE software packages from Ark Distribution, Corve Farmhouse, Chale Green, Ventnor, Isle of Wight, U.K., PO38 2A. Write for information and pricing or contact your local Ql dealer for a demonstra- tion.

MIDWEST TS COMPUTER FEST A Huge Success - AGAIN!

by Joe Williamson

May 2nd and 3rd was the peak time of the year for Timex and sinclair enthusiasts who once again converged for a weekend of fun and info gathering on our beloved computers. This year Indianapolis, Indiana was the site for the 2nd Midwest Timex Sinclair Compu Fest. If you were not there, you missed the best one yet!

More than 45 dealers and user groups displayed their wares in over 6000 square feet of space. There were two Seperate seminar rooms with scheduled seminars running all day In both rooms. There was also a “swap shop" room were TS users exchanged and sold thelr unused equipnent. A banquet was held on Friday night before the Fest to get all the dealers and user groups aquainted which was enjoyed by all.

More than 700 people were in attendance with family

meabers either enjoying the show or the excellent hospitalities of the Holiday Inn or even Indianapolis itself Including the Speedway which having tine trials that weekend. All in all than

twice the size of last from all over the US were there as well as from Cai England, Mexico, and £1 Salvador.

ople ada,

The entire line of Timex & Sinclair computers were represented as well as some clones such as the Thor (a QL clone) and the PC 8300 (a TS 1000 clone). Many seni- supporters were also there Including representatives from CTM magazine, Computer Shopper, c: rve, PC Pursuit, and The White Church Cabin who sold buttons commemorating the Computer Fest.

There was a shift of emphasis this year to the QL which seens to be doing much better than alot had expected last year. Sharp’s, Brice Road Pharaacy, Variety Sales, C. W. Associates, Curry Computer, Quantum Computing, Markel Electronics, RNG Enterprises, Tim Designs, Sync Ware News and Quantum Levels ail had

excellent products available for the QL at the show. At

Computer Response was also there showing their support for the QL.

The 2068 was not lacking in support either. Several new products were demonstrated and sold. RT Mnemonics, Variety Sales, The Widjup Co., Foote Software, Byte

Power, JRC Software, WHJ Data Systems, Grey & Clifford, Curry Computers, RNG Enterpris Novelsoft, Aerco, Zebra Systems, Knighted Computers, Semper Software, EZ Key, E. Arthur Brown, The John Oliger Co., Lenke Software Developnent, Larkin, Time Designs, and Syncware News all had products or catalogs available. Most of the seminars covered the 2068 and It seens that this year the trend 1s toward telecommunicating with the 2068 Instead of just playing Also, desktop publishing on both the 2068 and OL. 3 to be popular this year.

‘The 2X81/TS1000/1500 had It; companies as WMJ Data Systems, Sirius Ware, Zebra Systems, Silicon Mountain Computers, The John Oliger Co., Semper Software, EZ KEY Thomas B. Woods, Syncware News, and Time Designs represented at the show.

own following with such

The User groups were also well represented and are becoming a key to the continued support of our computers. The Indiana STUG, Greater Cleveland SUG, Chicaga Area TUG, Sinclair Milwaukee UG (SMUG), Capital Area TSUG (CATS), North East Florida TSUG, Sinclair Loulsville UG (SLUG), Tampa and ST. Pete Area Menbers TSUG (TASBAM), The San Diego UG, SAF UG, and the Quanta QL users group from England. User group representatives from all over the country were there to share and gather Information.

There were many door prizes donated which made it possible to have about eight prizes given away each hour! Some of the door prizes given away were the QL, software packages, service nanuals, subscriptions, gift certificates, books, and nevsletters. Everyone I spoke with said that they enjoyed the show and will return again next tine. Next time 1s already on the drawing

board and will be a reality. Also in the works Is a show

to be held next March In the Orlando Florida area. The producers of the Midvest TS Computerfest will help the North East Florida TSUG and the TASBAM group put on the March "88 show which has already recelved tremendous

support from the dealers pr

nt at the last show.

This 1s an excellent opportunity for everyone to come down and bring their family for a nice vacation in Florida. The site for the show will be very close to Disney World, Sea World, Circus World, and other aajor attractions. Also, this is off season time and vacation packages will be available at reasonable rates.

For more information, contact Eric Johnson, 249 N. Harden Ave, Orange City, FL 32763. A BBS will be set up at his address to gain more information soon. Actual date of show will be announced soon. Start making plans now!

The show was very well organized and proper credit should be given to all those envolved. The Show was put on by a non-profit enterprise comprised of various user groups and individuals in the Midwest. Frank Davis Is the producer and TS Founder. He and the following people should be applauded for putting on an excellent show. Paul Holmgren Executive Chairman

Willie Jones User grp. Coordntr/Registration Chairaan Ralph McCrum Swap Meet Chairaan/ Door Prize Coordntr. Basil Wentworth Seminar Chal Carol Davis Computer Rhonda Jones Special A Tim Woods Program Booklet Coordinator

ltant/Treasurer

1987 Computer Fest Comaittee Members: Jack Payne

Tom Burt

Hilda Burt

Bill Bell

Mike Felersk

Frank Duncan

Also, special thanks should be given to the Holiday Inn North of Indianapolis and many others who made the 1987 Midwest TS Computer Fest possible. I hope I covered everyone that was there!

Stewart Newfeld of Zebra Systems

WHO was there? WHAT was there? Another look at the 1987 Sinclair Extravaganza...

Reported by Tim Woods

Most "sophisticated" computer people who can even remember the Timex Sinclair, would like to think that it @cied up and withered away. But remember the old saying "you can't keep a good man down"? Certainly holds true with the Timex Sinclair community. Participation of both dealers and users at the 1987 Midvest TS Computer Fest held on May 2nd and 3rd in Indianapolis, Indiana, re- affirmed and demonstrated that there still is tremendous interest in Sir Clive's computers.

Something mist be said of this phenomena of getting behind an "orphan" computer and supporting it long after the manufacturer has severed ties and even forgotten it exists. (Evidence of this is seen elsewhere; some 10,000 die-hard T1994/A fans recently held a computer fair in Chicago. One enterprising individual is manufacturing TI clones. There is even a large support group for the Adam and another one for the IBM PCjr.) It is like a silent revolution, where the consumer takes action into his or her own hands. In a conversation with one long-time TS supporter at the Fest, he told me, "I have grown to be comfortable with my Timex system and it's kind of a challenge to find where I can still get programs and hardware for it. Sure there are faster, more powerful

machines, but I am very happy with what I have. Why should I go out and plunk down some bucks for an IBM clone or an Atari ST, when I haven't even explored all of the potential of my own machine? And I'm having a lot of fun too!"

Several new items were displayed or announced for the first time ever at the TS Computer Fest. Many of the

exhibiting dealers had large booths with monitors set up to demonstrate their wares.

Mark Steuber from Sharp's Inc., of Mechanicsville, Virginia (who also happens to be the author of WAR IN THE EAST, a program that has sold quite well in the U.K. recently), had several new offerings for the OL, along with some news of other developments. Most important perhaps is that a new board called the TRUMP CARD, will available by the time you read this, for $299.95. And get this—along with a full-featured disk interface you also get additional RAM that will boost your QL's memory to 900K!! At the Sharp's table were some hardware up- grades from Miracle Systems and Sandy (including the SUPERQBOARD and SUPERMOUSE). A new keyboard replacement for the QL called the Schon Keyboard was also shown. Reportedly it only takes about three minutes to install, and is priced at about $90. It had the feel of a very good typewriter keyboard. Mark said that several of his customers are interested in the new CP/M operating system from Ultrasoft, and that he has it on order. This should open a vast amount of public domain software for the QL.

Joe Williamson at the Foote Software booth.

Z

‘TM's Editor, Tim Woods chats with Mowgli Assor, the programmer of "SEKTOR 2068", a disk utility.

On another note, it was announced that Sharp's Inc. had bought out Knighted Computer's OL business. knighted Computers (of Fulton, New York) will no longer stock QL products, but instead will be concentrating on the other computer lines like the Amstrad, but will also continue to support the Timex Sinclair 2068. Ray Payne, co-owner of Knighted mentioned that the QL business had been an “up and down" affair, yet the T2068 has proven to be a very steady enterprise. They have a whole list of superb programs for the Timex that have been converted from the Sinclair Spectrum, including their latest, TOMAHAWK, a helicopter flight/air battle simalation.

Continued Next Page...

Jon Roketenetz (programmer) and Mark Fendrick of Markel Enterprises have just released "Electrigl, Desk".

At the Sharp's Inc. booth: the Schon Keyboard and disk interface/RAM board from Miracle systems.

MIDWEST TS COMPUTER FEST

Zebra Systems of Woodhaven, New York, again (as in Cincinnati last year) had the largest display of Timex Sinclair merchandise. Everything from books, Memotech interfaces, programs, and even a new Wico Trackball con- troller for the Sinclair QL. For months, rumors had been circulating in the Sinclair community that Zebra was "getting out" of the Timex business. But the truth is, while they do have on-going development for other lines (like the Tandy and Atari), they have committed to con- tinue support for the Timex. They have a large inventory of related merchandise including a number of used ZX81s, 2X power supplies, and un-tested 2050 modem cards.

TS Fest Committee members and helpful personages: (back row, L to R) Gary Ganger, Tom Burt, Hilda Burt, Paul Holmgren, Willie Jones, Basil Wentworth, Bill Bell, and Prank Duncan. (Front row, L to R) Prank Davis, ‘Carol Davis, Jack Roberts, and Rhonda Jones.

areas where Fest attendees came from,

‘A map depicted

‘The food at Friday night's Banquet was superb! Salads, croissants, tenderloin tips, chicken, and world famous strayberry’ cheesecake wore the featuted fare...and the Service wasn't bad either.

‘Tom Bent answers a customers question. Tom is the editor Of QUANTUM LEVELS and is the U.S. librarian for QUANTA, the London-based OL users group.

Stewart Newfeld, manager of Zebra Systems even reported that an all new catalog would be printed shortly. I think that most Fest attendees were impressed with Zebra's attitude and confirmation of support for TS users, which greatly differs from some of the rumors that were floating around recently.

It was a real joy to see that Curry Computer could make it to this year's Fest (all the way from Phoenix, Arizona). They brought with them a good sampling of their Sinclair product lines, which leans heavily to- wards the Sinclair QL. On display was both a Sinclair Spectrum 128 (pre-Amstrad) and the CST THOR (the newest

‘The Friday night Banquet was attended by the exhibitors and Pest committee menbers. It was held in the hotel's spacious ballroom, complete with crystal chandeliers. This was the perfect "kick-off" to the successful 1987 Midwest TS Computer Fest.

Editor Tim Woods and Assistant Manager Stephanie Woods of TIME DESIGNS, enjoy excellent dinner conversation with Ian'Robertson (far left) from ‘Toronto, Canada and several other TS notables.

Representatives of CATS, the Washington, D.C. area TS Users group, (i to R) Hank Dickson, Audeey “and BOD Coenut, and Ruth Fegley.