The University of Pennsylvania's Online Computing Magazine

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Volume 9

April 1993


Via PennInfo's WorldWide TechInfo menu or the World command, you can now reach the PennInfo -> Gopher gateway, plus sites running TechInfo, the software underlying PennInfo.

The National Center for Adult Literacy's documents, project abstracts, newsletters, and staff directory are available via Gopher. You can find NCAL's information under Gopher Servers at Penn. Documents will be updated and added regularly.

President Clinton's electronic mail address is White House staff ask that messages have a clear subject line and include a street address (responses are sent by regular mail).

WordPerfect 5.2 for Windows is available and includes Grammatik 5, a program that checks documents for grammar, style, and punctuation; ready-made Button Bars for merge, formatting, graphics; Adobe Type Manager fonts; OLE (object linking and embedding) support; and Quick Finder, a new feature that allows for quick searches of files.

Apple is working on a version of System 7.1 for 486-based computers. The project is code-named "Star Trek" because this system is going where no Mac has gone before.

PennInfo complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act. If you're using the PennInfo Macintosh client software, you can make menu text as large as 24 points. From the Edit menu, select Menu View. Then highlight the font size best suited to your needs.

Always turn off your computer and any peripheral devices before attaching or detaching keyboards, hard drives, or CD-ROMs. You can damage the equipment.

Elm can be used from a Unix command line as an interactive command. Simply type elm <recipient> (Example: elm You will be prompted for carbons and a subject and then taken into the editor. Once you've composed and sent the message, you are returned to the Unix command line.

If you're looking for a way to send formatted text files via e-mail, try saving the file in RTF format. Developed by Microsoft, the Rich Text Format is a superset of standard ASCII that allows 7-bit text to retain formatting such as bold and underline. Many word processing applications support RTF.

WordPerfect 5.1 for DOS does not permit footnote entries in columns. Footnotes entered into text before columns are set up are automatically changed to endnotes.

Word processing tip: If you're entering columns of numbers or text, use tabs, not spaces, to align the columns, and set as few tab stops as possible. Why? If you want to change column widths, you simply need to change the tabs rather than edit the number of spaces in each line.

If you access PennInfo via VT100 terminal emulation (using MicroPhone or ProComm, for example) and want to do a keyword search of the entire system, use the command syntax key <keyword> all. Example: key printout all.

Stop! Write-protect the floppy disks of any new software you purchase before you put them into your disk drive. This prevents unintentional changes (such as deleting files) to your originals. Don't forget to make backup disks according to the software instructions.

The BIAS (Business Intelligence Access System) program provides low-cost access to more than 850 commercial databases covering business and federally funded research in progress. Call the Wharton Small Business Development Center, 898-4861, for information.

Computer dating may lead to the purchase of a computer wedding planner! Options include the PC-based Wedlock and Easy Etiquette Wedding Planner, and the Macintosh-based MacWedding.

Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft, the world's largest software company, is the richest person in the world, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Audio- and/or videotapes of the panel discussions held as part of the ISC's Information Technology Forecasting Project are available. Call the Project cochairs, Donna Milici (898-4026) or Noam Arzt (898-3029), for information.

March 1993


PennInfo users with IP/Ethernet connected Macintoshes can display an attractive color perspective view of the campus (use the keyword "map").

If your laser printer is smearing or streaking, check the humidity level of your office. At below 20 percent relative humidity, static electricity will charge the feeder guide, which attracts unfused toner.

If you are new to e-mail you should become familiar with "smileys." Smileys are symbols composed of punctuation marks and alphanumeric characters that convey the intended tone of a message. Examples are :-) for humor, :-( for anger/sorrow, and *-| for confusion.

To go back to a message marked for deletion in ELM, type in the number of the message at the command line.

HP is introducing its new LaserJet 4si this spring. It features serial, parallel, and Ethernet connectivity; a print speed of 17 pages per minute at 300 dots per inch; and 2 Mbytes of built-in memory.

Microsoft Windows version 3.1 users who have limited hand function may want to get the Microsoft Access Pack for Windows. This product contains an application that makes it easier for users to manage two- or three-key combinations.

DOS 5.0 includes a useful, menu-operated text editor called "edit." To invoke edit, type edit <filename> and press the return key at the DOS prompt. The filename may be a DOS pathname.

To get rid of deleted messages from within ELM without quitting, press <Shift-4> and the return key. This will resynchronize your current folder, deleting any messages marked for deletion.

NeXT, Inc. recently announced that it will no longer be developing hardware. The company will instead dedicate itself to developing its NeXTSTEP operating environment. NeXT is in the process of completing work on the Intel 486 version of NeXTSTEP and claims that there has been interest from other vendors in porting the software.

Put a chain on that laptop! Small, portable computers are attractive to thieves as well as to purchasers. According to Parade magazine, the Stolen Computer Registry reports hundreds of thousands of the mini- models were stolen last year--four times as many as in 1991.

FAQ refers to a list of frequently asked questions.

Scientists at AT&T have developed a new technique for transmitting data at extremely high speeds over fiber optic cable. Data can be transmitted error-free over long distances (more than 8,000 miles) at a speed of 20 gigabits per second, the equivalent of approximately 1.25 million pages per second.

Take a different view of file listings at the System 7 desktop. Use the Views control panel under the apple menu to change the font and font size or the size of the icons within the windows.

Windows 3.1 contains a built-in screen saver. To select or change the pattern displayed, select Control Panel from the Windows Main group. Then choose Desktop and choose your options from the Screen Saver section.

Be careful when deleting codes in the Reveal Codes (Alt-F3) screen in WordPerfect for DOS; the program does not ask you to confirm the deletions as it does in the regular document-editing screen.

To find out which version of WordPerfect for Windows you are using and its release date, press <Alt-h> and then <a>.

Microsoft has released Windows 3.1 for Eastern and Central Europe. Supported languages include Polish, Hungarian, Czech, and Slovak.

When ALL-IN-ONE reports that you have more messages than you see, it may be because you have received some VMSmail, which is not automatically imported. Press <v> at the Electronic Messaging menu to import it.

November 1992


Computerized NIH grant application forms can be downloaded from the server in the Biomedical Library. Microsoft Word and Excel for the Mac or Windows are required to fill out the forms. There are no versions for WordPerfect or Lotus 1-2-3. Info: Janet Lind, 898-2660.

TrueType font technology, already available for Macintosh and Windows users, is now here for users of DOS. MicroLogic Software's True Type for DOS allows users of DOS-based applications such as WordPerfect and Microsoft Word to use, display, and print TrueType fonts. Contact MicroLogic Software at 800/888-9078.

To get the latest weather forecast for Philadelphia and vicinity--both current and long-range predictions--select "What's New on PennInfo" from the PennInfo main menu,

In Microsoft Windows 3.1, press <Alt-Print Screen> to copy the current window to the clipboard.

Apple's System 7.1 software will support such languages as Japanese, Chinese, and Korean, using two bytes to describe a character instead of one.

HP has announced its new line of laser printers. The LaserJet 4 is a 600 dpi printer with 2 Mbytes of memory and 45 internal scalable fonts. The LaserJet 4M is a Macintosh/DOS compatible printer with built-in PostScript and 6 Mbytes of memory. The 4M will allow PCs and Macs to be connected at the same time, and switches automatically between PostScript and PCL.

The new processor from Intel, the successor to the 80486, will be called Pentium: "pent," from the Greek meaning five, and "ium" to make it sound like the chip is a fundamental element.

When files are moved or deleted on a Mac, their aliases remain. If the original file is moved, the alias will still find it. If the original file has been removed, a message reporting that the original cannot be found appears.

DOS 5.0's Edit command does not automatically make a backup of the file you are editing. You should make a copy of any important file, such as autoexec.bat or config.sys, before making changes.

To display recent articles first in NewsWatcher running on a Macintosh: From the File menu, select "Preferences...," then choose "List Most Recent Articles First."

September 1992


PennInfo's scope and use are growing rapidly: Approximately 2,500 documents are available on the system, and 15,000requests for documents were made during the month of July.

More for less: The monthly charge for high-speed PennNet ethernet connections has been dropped to $24.50, only $2 more than the charge for a slower asynchronous connection.

Windows 3.1 offers Application Reboot, which enables other applications to keep running while you reboot a problem application.

Access to the Penn Library's online catalog and databases has been changed: Just type library at the PennNet DIAL: prompt or t library at the annex: prompt, and choose from the menu.

WordPerfect has 850 operators in its customer support department.

The text of the Information Infrastructure and Technology Act of 1992, a bill introduced on July 1 by Senator and Democratic vice-presidential candidate Al Gore, is available on PennInfo in the "What's New" folder.

The computer chip powering your 486-based PC operates at 85 degrees Celsius (185 degrees Fahrenheit). Since the chip is only one of several components of a microcomputer that generate heat, it is no wonder your desktop computer gives off so much heat.

Hard drives are continually growing larger in capacity and smaller in size and weight: Seagate Technology has announced 1.8" diameter drives with a capacity of 40, 65, or 80 Mbytes at less than 5 ounces, and HP has announced a 1.3" diameter 21.4 Mbyte drive weighing only 1 ounce!

Alpha 4 2.0 provides network support, improved memory management, data security, and a flexible scripting language that allows for more complex scripts

Excel 4.0 has enhanced charting, for a total of 90 chart types, including 3-D, bar, surface, wireframe, and radar. The 3-D rotator allows you to rotate 3-D charts by clicking on the chart and dragging to activate the rotation.

The CIA World Factbook, a compendium of information gathered by the Central Intelligence Agency and long available on CD-ROM, has now been joined by a companion product--the KGB World Factbook.

In FileMaker Pro, if you know the number of the record you wish to view, click on the number that appears on the binder icon (this is the record currently in view), type the number of the record you seek, and press <RETURN>.

A quick way to copy files under Mac System 7 is to hold down the Option key while dragging the selected files to the desired destination. The files will then be copied instead of moved.

WordPerfect for Windows users: The WordPerfect printer driver does not give you access to True Type fonts, while the Windows printer driver makes available all installed fonts.

Version 3.1 of the driver for HP's DeskWriter printer has background printing and a print preview feature that allows you to see the layout of your document (one of three magnifications) before it is printed.

Monarch Notes, the confused student's guide to interpreting the classics, is now available on CD-ROM for both the Macintosh and IBM/compatible computers.

A computer that would replicate the functioning of the retina in the human eye would have to be able to process one billion instructions per second, according to the American Public Radio show "Soundprint."