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Public Domain Software (part of article in Vol.12 No.7 - Dec 1993)


I promised last issue that I would mention the latest Master 512 co-processor related software this issue (I also promised to begin a look at other sources of material for BBC users, but that will have to wait until next time). BBC PD disc GA3 is an 800K DOS format disc which contains hints on, and solutions to, a large number of commercial adventure games for DOS computers. Games covered include many Scott Adams adventures (some of which were made available in BBC Micro format many years ago), and the text based Infocom adventure game series - highly recommended if you are struggling with any of these games. Also on the disc are a couple of arcade type games, a text mode 'graphical' adventure game and an ESP experiment to while away your spare time on.

David Harper, whose name should by now be familiar as a source of expertly provided material for the 512, has recently come up with a 4 disc collection of PD and shareware which he has found to be compatible with the 512. There are no overlaps between the software on these discs and others which are currently available, although some of the software was previously in the Dabs Press collections which some of you may be aware of. David compiled the discs to complement the existing 21 discs in the BBC PD library, which already contained some but not all of the software which had appeared in those collections.

The collection of 4 discs contains over 5 megabytes of software, all of which is archived using PKZIP. David has actually used PKZIP version 2.04g, which needs a little setting up to work on the 512, but this is explained clearly in text files on the discs. I won't go into the relative merits of various versions of PKZIP as Robin Burton's 512 Forum column has covered all of the relevant considerations. The contents of the discs are fully detailed in a large text file on the first of the four discs, but briefly they include lots of games, versions of Prolog and Basic programming languages, utilities, word processor, spelling and readability aids, world map program, cassette tape labeller utility, printing aids and more.

I won't go into more detail of the contents here, but I do think that David deserves recognition and thanks on behalf of those of us who still actively use the 512 co-pro for his efforts in compiling this collection, as well as for his previous contributions to its usefulness.

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