CommoTech BBS

The CommoTeeh Amiga store near San Diego is hosting a prominent JForth section on their BBS. Log in for discussion or Q&A. We also encourage people to upload files that they would like to share. We will try to make sure anything we write will be posted to this BBS for downloading. This BBS is FREE and can be reached currently by phoning (619)-477-2368. CommoTech plans to move soon and may change their phone number so if you have trouble logging in, dial that number by hand and listen for the new number.

When you log in, you can do so under a guest account called "JForth" with a password of "Delta". Once logged in, you will be told how to get a private account. To get to the JForth section, just enter 'J' from the Main Menu. Marlin Schwanke is the Sysop.

JForth on BIX

Martin Kees has kindly volunteered to host a vendor conference on BIX. It is accessable at "amiga.vendor/delta". Log in to exchange ideas or to get help. BIX is a national BBS hosted by BYTE magazine. For more information about BIX, call (800)-638-9636.

JForth on TV - Jim Cuomo

What do the following movies have in common: Body Language; Murder C.O.D.; Chrome Soldiers; Good Cop, Bad Cop; and The Incredible Journey? If you guessed that they all have scenes where JForth plays a role, then you were correct. When Hollywood needs a computer to appear in a scene with actors and actresses, they call Jim Cuomo. He writes JForth programs that simulate advanced applications that do exactly what the director wants. They don't want to use real applications because that would imply an endorsement of the product, plus they don't want to be limited by what's on the market. Jim will write a program that displays exactly what is required by the script and appears to be controlled by the actor. Often the keyboard is disabled so that the actor can just randomly type on the keyboard and everything will still work. He often uses the IFF toolbox to display images then draws over them with the graphics toolbox. An example is in Murder C.O.D. where the killer (William Devane) used a fake data base with photographic images and text to find his next victim. We are glad this was for pretend. We do not allow the use of JForth for illegal or psychopathic activities.

Power Glove interface

Robert Marsanyi, of Ad Records, has written a JForth program to interface between the Amiga and a Mattel Power Glove. The Glove was intended for use with video games but can be used as a general purpose 3 dimensional input device. I have found Power Gloves for under $40 at "Toys are Us". Besides X,Y,Z position the glove will also transmit finger flexure and hand rotation. This is ideal for "virtual reality" experiments.

The software interface runs as a background task that communicates with the Glove over the parallel port in "hi-res" mode. Other programs can communicate with it using IntuiMessages. The messages it responds to are:

Reset - resets glove and interface

Start and Stop polling

Poll - gets the current information in a message packet

This program is available free on the HMSL Bulletin board. It is called GT.LZH and can be found in Area 10 which is dedicated to Glove related information. GT.LZH includes source code, a cloned image, a test program, and documentation on how to wire a glove to your parallel port. The HMSL Bulletin Board is free at (415)-928-8246.