Author Topic: Printing the Manual helps!  (Read 29772 times)

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Offline AdrianFox

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Printing the Manual helps!
« on: February 19, 2009, 01:33:49 AM »
Just a tip which might be helpful to like-individuals who are struggling to understand some of the features of EB. 

I know people say this is an 'age' thing (not being able to follow clearly  or absorb information on screen)  , but after using EB for some months, and struggling with a number of its features, I finally got down to printing out a hard copy of some of the manual (specifically for the whole 'Opening a Window' and controls section.)

Sitting down to study this properly, with a highlighting pen, and trying out every bit of code where I wasn't sure I understood the text,  was a revelation.  Suddenly most of those things I didn't grasp before became clear.  And I discovered a whole lot of things I just didn't know existed as it's easy to miss them when browsing quickly through screens.

Anyway, my tip to all those who find initial difficulty is that using all that paper is worthwhile as there's no alternative to reading the hard copy. 

Use the electronic pages to quickly look things up and copy/paste bits of code.

 ;D
Adrian Fox

Offline MarineDon

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Re: Printing the Manual helps!
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2009, 06:57:19 PM »
Dear AdrianFox

I just begin Emergence BASIC about a month ago and
I've been using its EBasic Users Guide. I believe that
I would like to read a hard copy of EB's help.

Will you please tell me where might I download it?
I guess I could just click on the printer icon at the
top of the users guide. Is that what you did?
Somewhere I suppose there might be a PDF
copy. I especially enjoy PDF's search routine.

By the way, check out the "CB Browser" I wrote
under "User Offerings". I first wrote it in Creative
BASIC and later compiled it in Emergence BASIC
with a decrease in size from 394,752 bytes to
137,432. This EBasic is really incredible!

By the way, I am a thirty-year retired teacher of
Math/History/Spanish residing in Orange County,
California. I am also a former six-year Sergeant of
Marines. Who-Rah! On certain forums I am known
as MarineDon.

Regards Don Smith [MarineDon]
« Last Edit: February 22, 2009, 07:22:39 PM by Paul Turley »
Don Smith [MarineDon]
(deceased 2011)

Offline Ionic Wind Support Team

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Re: Printing the Manual helps!
« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2009, 07:22:10 PM »
The pdf file comes with the installation.

c:\wherever you installed to\ebdev\help\userguide.pdf

The help directory contains htmlHelp, winHelp and PDF versions of the users guide.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

EDIT:  I removed your email address from the post, anyone that wants to contact you can do so through a PM or clicking on the email icon in your profile when logged in.  Posting it directly in an open post should be avoided as spam bots will surely harvest it. 

Paul.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2009, 07:24:55 PM by Paul Turley »
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Offline AdrianFox

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Re: Printing the Manual helps!
« Reply #3 on: February 23, 2009, 01:28:29 AM »
Don,

As Paul has said above, the pdf file is located in the EBDev/help folder.   I just printed out the relevant sections from the Ebasic Users Guide in the program.

Will look at your CB Browser prog.  I'm currently working on an interactive guide on Chaucer's 'Wife of Bath' Tale', probably as freeware.  I wrote this  in Liberty Basic six or so years ago for my students, but it made a clumpy, enormous program which hung all the time, and was incredibly slow. 

In EB it looks like I will be able to get the whole thing compiled as a 5 or 600k program, including most of the graphics as compiled resources and text as data strings.  And it works so fast.

Still discovering lots of new things (to me) in the manual.  It's so easy to miss these on screen, hence the advantage of hard copy you can browse.  For example, the Controlex "SysMonthCal32" looks very useful.  Never even noticed it was there before.


Adrian Fox

Offline RG

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Re: Printing the Manual helps!
« Reply #4 on: February 23, 2009, 11:24:35 AM »
Some of us where lucky enough to buy the printed bound manual version Paul had a while back. I too find it easier to read from a printed copy where you can flip back and forth. The printed manual doesn't get updated but then I can go tothe PDF and print off new sections as needed.

Offline dalescott

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Re: Printing the Manual helps!
« Reply #5 on: February 23, 2009, 06:00:56 PM »
I'm a fan of paper too. I find I get the big picture quicker with paper and pen in hand, and nothing beats paper for making notes in place. However, I also have to admit my full printed manual, in two nice shiny binders, has sat in my office relatively untouched since printing it a couple months ago (mind you, I carried around just the chapter on Windows Programming for a couple weeks, reading and re-reading when the opportunity arose).

Your favorite big-box office supply store can print the manual for you, unfortunately at a price. If you want the full meal deal at current Chapters Canadian pricing, it will cost C$49.71, not including the 3-ring binders ($1 digital file opening + [655 pages x ($0.06/page 500-999 pages black&white) + ($0.01/page 3-hole paper)] + $0.50 for a color copy of the front page to slide into the outside front of the binder + 0.05% federal services tax on top).

Dale

P.S. Is the PDF manual updated for each compiler release?

Offline Raid

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Re: Printing the Manual helps!
« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2009, 07:02:41 PM »
Don,

As Paul has said above, the pdf file is located in the EBDev/help folder.   I just printed out the relevant sections from the Ebasic Users Guide in the program.


Which worked out to approx how many pages of text for you? I've been thinking to myself alot lately that I should print out the user manual, so I'd have more time to glance around and examine some of the included samples in greater detail. I really like the possibilities the language offers.

I just purchased the network library to go along with the newly purchased compiler. I had the freeware edition since v1.53 or v1.54 I think, and it's very cool. The executables it makes are nice and small, and well designed from an structure standpoint. I'm sure nasm has something to do with that, eh Paul? :)
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Offline Ionic Wind Support Team

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Re: Printing the Manual helps!
« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2009, 09:34:54 PM »
? I think you are a little confused on how an executable is made, and what determines it's final size. Nasm is just the assembler and it has little to do with the final size of an executable.  An assembler takes mnemonic assembly code and translates it into machine code, in the form of a binary object file.  The mnemonic code is produced by the Emergence BASIC lexer/parser, which we traditionally call the "compiler".  Although it is common for the term "compiler" to refer to all of the tools needed to take a high level source code, such as BASIC or C, and produce an executable for it.

The object file is very raw, meaning it has unresolved references to external functions, imports and variables.  The Emergence linker resolves those references and glues all of the needed object files and libs together to produce a PE format executable.

The operand size of any particular mnemonic is constant, as specified for Intel processors.  What that means is it doesn't matter what assembler you use, the size of the executable is determined by the number and size of each instruction plus the size of any linker included references plus the size of initialized data.  Uninitialized data doesn't take up any space in the executable.  In other words:

string a
string %b="hello"

The first variable is just marked as "needing" 255 bytes when the executable is loaded by Windows.  The second is initialized data, which takes up 255 bytes in the executable.

I chose Nasm because I prefer the opcode syntax and because of its license.  It is quite a bit slower than other available assemblers and still has quite a few nagging bugs, like not supporting import records correctly.  The Nasm we use isn't stock either, it is heavily modified to support COFF line numbers and debug symbols.  Which is how the debugger knows which line an exception occurs on.

I plan on switching assemblers for the 2.0 version of Emergence, if I ever get the chance to write it.  64 bit support is still in its infancy with Nasm, so we need a more robust solution anyway.

Paul.
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Offline Raid

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Re: Printing the Manual helps!
« Reply #8 on: February 24, 2009, 02:06:03 AM »
? I think you are a little confused on how an executable is made, and what determines it's final size. Nasm is just the assembler and it has little to do with the final size of an executable.  An assembler takes mnemonic assembly code and translates it into machine code, in the form of a binary object file.  The mnemonic code is produced by the Emergence BASIC lexer/parser, which we traditionally call the "compiler".  Although it is common for the term "compiler" to refer to all of the tools needed to take a high level source code, such as BASIC or C, and produce an executable for it.

I didn't intend to come across that way, as that is certainly, er.. Not the case. I'm very familiar with how executables are made. Thanks tho.

Quote
The operand size of any particular mnemonic is constant, as specified for Intel processors.  What that means is it doesn't matter what assembler you use, the size of the executable is determined by the number and size of each instruction plus the size of any linker included references plus the size of initialized data.  Uninitialized data doesn't take up any space in the executable.  In other words:

string a
string %b="hello"

The first variable is just marked as "needing" 255 bytes when the executable is loaded by Windows.  The second is initialized data, which takes up 255 bytes in the executable.

Completely understood.

I think I misphrased what I intended to convey which led to the confusion you thought I had. I understand the process from start to finish and know most of the dos based mnemonics by heart. :)

Your language is a nice one and it doesn't make bloated executables is what I was trying to say. Sorry about the confusion on my part.
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Offline Parker

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Re: Printing the Manual helps!
« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2009, 10:54:40 AM »
Yasm looked very interesting to me - it's compatible with NASM and GAS although I don't know if it is suitable for a compiler to use yet as it's still in the beta stages.

Offline Logman

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Re: Printing the Manual helps!
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2009, 01:35:32 PM »
Greetings:

I wouldn't even consider a language/compiler product that didn't come with a printable manual or user's guide. So many of the programming languages offered on the web either do not come with a printable manual, or they only include rudimentary electronic 'help' versions.

Like many programmers out there, I need to sit down with a hard copy reference guide and read it cover to cover, make notations on the pages, and keep it close by as a handy reference. I'm glad Paul includes a PDF version with each licensed copy of his product offerings. It's the first thing I checked for when transitioning over to EBasic. In fact, and I don't want to put any ideas into Paul's head, I'd be willing to pay as much or more for the hard-copy user's guide than I would for the actual compiler--that's how valuable they are to me.

Bottom line, no hard-copy manual, no product sale. Keep up the good work Ionic Wind.

Logman  >:(
Education is what you get when you read the fine print.
Experience is what you get when you don't!