(my) !Teletext vs Teletext+
IMPORTANT: I am not a user of Teletext+. My information has come from advertising materials, and email discussions with people who own a copy of Teletext+.
Accordingly, this information may not be completely accurate. I extend an invitation to
Paul Skirrow if he'd like to send me a copy of his program on a limited trial basis, or (instead)
if he'd like to write a reply to this comparison.
I also extend an invitation if he is interested in things such as how my DST adjustment routines work...contact me.
You'll find the Teletext+ support here...
My !Teletext? It is free. Run twenty copies on twenty computers, I don't care. Give a copy
to everybody you know as a Christmas present...that's fine too.
You don't get a printed manual though. You'll have to print it out yourself. But, wait, do you?
Just load the !Help file into !Edit and cut out the bits that interest you and drop them into your DTP package (there's no excuse - Computer Concepts gave away Impression Junior a few years back (maybe it is still on their website?), and the original Ovation can be bought at a nice price (something like £10 from APDL!)), make the text size smaller, maybe 9 or 10pt, so you can fit more on a page. You can probably get the important details on both sides of a piece of A4. That said, I've tried to make the program simple and obvious... in fact emails with several of my users, they failed to notice a glaring typo as they never bothered to read the help file! :-)
The script help is available as a StrongHelp file, so it is right there on-screen when you'll need it.
Here is a simple comparison, from advertising material.
I think it is pretty standard that the pages are displayed in a window, and that you can click
on a page to send the receiver looking for that page. Something Teletext+ does that my software
doesn't is the ability to search for specific sub-pages. My software will grab them all in the
normal rotating style. You can, of course, use the cursor left and right to call up subpages as
It appears that the Teletext+ cache is held in memory (is this correct?). My software keeps it on disc. This is less friendly if you have a floppy disc, but it does mean that you can quit and reload my software without worrying about the cache. It'll still be there. Also, there's no concept of cache size, the cache just expands as data is received, and shrinks as outdated pages are removed, either manually or by reloading the software (which auto-tidies). And as everybody with a 1Mb machine will agree, it is preferable to access the disc drive more often, than to use up precious memory!
The Teletext+ software has a 'Predictive Caching' facility, where the pages you view are 'scored' and highest scoring pages are fetched for you first. My software does not do this - I would find it difficult to fully test multi-channel reception with no off-air signals (I don't get UK TV here in France!), and anyway it's a bit of a doddle to cobble together a script to do it automatically. Let's face it, fetching the pages and compiling a nice with-colours-too OvationPro document is pretty damn sexy, isn't it? Take a look at the script called '!startup' for an example of how to do it, or look at the picture on the 'what's new' page to see that it looks like - the one that says who's on the Jay Leno show...
Oh... And once the '!startup' script has fetched the pages for me, I can view them in the main viewer as they're in the cache.
There is a 'warm up' sort of thing on both programs - you can ask my software to AutoScan for you. This will set it looking for all pages from 101 onwards. In practice, this takes a while so it is always preferable to write a little script to fetch what you specifically want. The Teletext+ warm-up will fetch pages according to score.
My software does not automatically save all sub-pages when saving a page (though there are commands in the script to do this). You can save, from the main viewer, as:
16/05/2003 20:21 GMT Euro:Pound rate : 1.4023 (0.7131) Dollar:Euro rate : 1.1581 Euro:Austr$ rate : 0.7567 Euro Pound Dollar Australia$ ---------------------------------- 5 3.56 5.79 3.78 10 7.13 11.58 7.56 15 10.69 17.37 11.35 20 14.26 23.16 15.13 25 17.82 28.95 18.91 30 21.39 34.74 22.70 35 24.95 40.53 26.48 40 28.52 46.32 30.26 45 32.09 52.11 34.05 50 35.65 57.90 37.83 55 39.22 63.69 41.61 60 42.78 69.48 45.40 65 46.35 75.27 49.18 70 49.91 81.06 52.96 75 53.48 86.85 56.75 80 57.04 92.64 60.53 85 60.61 98.43 64.31 90 64.18 104.22 68.10 95 67.74 110.01 71.88 100 71.31 115.81 75.67
As I'm not a Teletext+ user, I cannot compare the 'script' methods used by each program. If you'd
like to take a look at the script interpreter built into my software, please look at either the
script guide or the examples - links on the main teletext index...
Full user control over page checking and flash durations is provided by my software.
My software does not have 'alarm' facilities, but it supports a message protocol so that you can write a simple program to run scripts...which may be controlled by, say, !Alarm.
It seems, at a brief outline, that my software may be more powerful but it requires a
higher degree of user interaction, like writing scripts and so forth...while Teletext+ is much
more 'automatic', it does stuff for you, taking care of things in the background.
As a programmer, I obviously prefer my software - not just because I'm obviously going to be biased, but because I prefer to be able to tailor things to my exact needs. I can write a '!startup' script that fetches the highlights for the week on Mondays, and Jay Leno's guest list on Thursday-Sunday; while fetching the news articles every day. Cool, huh? :-)
I'll leave it up to users with both products to draw other comparisons and reasons for or against each product. There are a number of things my software doesn't do that Teletext+ does, and vice versa. Obviously - use what you like the most...
Here's the Teletext+ link again - http://www.octosys.co.uk/ttxsp.html
(and remember, my software is free - why not download your copy right now?)
#define subtitles 1888 2888 3888 4888 5888 #search subtitles acorn goal
A !Teletext script looks more like:
; WthrNantes - the current weather in Nantes channel(5) .channelcheck channelid(A) if (A ! &804F) message("Please set satellite receiver to CNN.") if (A ! &804F) go("channelcheck") getframes(463) set F to status(frames) ; turn off polling to speed it up a little poll_nomessages() poll_disable() fileupdate("<Teletext$Temp>.WthrNantes") set G to 2 .frameloop selectframes(463, G) set L to 2 .lineloop find(B,"NANTES",L) if (B = 0) go("continue") ; no Nantes here... ; got Nantes setchar(35,5,32) ; remove 'x/x' pagecount setchar(36,5,32) setchar(37,5,32) appendline(5,2) ; the date filewritebyte(10) appendline(L,2) ; the report line filewritebyte(10) ; work out the temperature add(B,15) readvalue(M,B,L) filewritestring("Temperature for Nantes : ") filewritevar(M,2) ; allows "-9" to "99" filewritestring(", in Farenheit: ") set Z to M ; Farenheit is... add(Z,40) ; Celcuis plus 40 mul(Z,Z,9) ; multiplied by nine div(Z,Z,5) ; divided by five sub(Z,40) ; minus 40 filewritevar(Z,1) filewritebyte(10) filewritebyte(10) go("finish") ; don't need to scan any further .continue L++ if (L [ 24) go("lineloop") ; branching can go back and forth G++ if (G [ F) go("frameloop") .finish fileclose() ; re-pollify poll_enable ; reopen "the usual" windows getframe(100) ; force it back to 'index' showviewer() showcontrols() poll_now() ; extra poll for windowopens ; ensure file is Text, then run file (loads into !Edit (etc)) filetype("<Teletext$Temp>.WthrNantes", &FFF) oscall("Filer_Run <Teletext$Temp>.WthrNantes") poll_now() ; poll, so file has a chance to load pushkey(&1AE) ; Ctrl-cursordown terminate() ; we're done