Our Next Meeting: Wednesday 18th November
Social Networking & Web applications (Facebook, Twitter etc.)
by Gareth et al.

There are now more ways than ever to communicate online and with Web 2.0 brings many feature rich web applications to share our lives online with the world.

On the night we should hopefully be able to look at a number of these if our mobile Internet is willing.

Do you Tweet on Twitter, keep people up to date on FaceBook or would you rather avoid the whole thing?

Our Last Meeting :Wednesday 21st October:Programmes ported to Windows: Ovation Pro, Personal Accountz, DPlngscan, etc. by Frank

Unfortunately we had a some technical difficulties in setting up, since we could only find one cable for this meeting, which somewhat cramped Frank's style; since for his presentation he really needed two screens operative. The cable was later found in the bottom of the bag at the end of the meeting!

The aim of this meeting was to compare software applications which had been ported to windows, to show the differences between these two versions and to show how sometimes this enabled file conversions to be carried out and what happened when the data files were ported between operating systems.

Ovation Pro

Frank began by talking about Ovation Pro. This program was written by David Pilling and was based on Ovation. A file in RISCOS has and extension 'dpd' e.g. filename/dpd which enables then file to be recognised as an Ovation file in Windows e.g. filename.dpd. However on opening a file the fonts used often cause problems since RISC OS fonts are different to Windows fonts. You can buy fonts for installation in Windows, but they are expensive (£30 per font) and usually it is not worthwhile. He showed an original EAUG Newsletter by way of example showing the incorporation of small images also. He next showed an article from a technical journal including an image of a locomotive with what appeared to be an irregular frame with text flowing around it. It was in fact a rectangular frame with an irregular frame inside it. There were various tools in Ovation Pro which enabled you to modify the irregular frame shape with grab points and handles. He used the small application Lorem Ipsum (www.lipsum.com) to add false text to a document to see the flow properties.

Style palettes are shown in the Windows version showing the fonts used. The full cost of OvationPro in RISC OS is £140 and but most users have upgraded from earlier versions. Owners of OvationPro may purchase a Windows version for £60. Some people use EasiWriter but it is is not the same, this is a fully fledged Desktop publishing program. There were some enhancements made by the author in the Windows version which were not ported back to the Risc OS version. Being able to use a Windows version of the software gives a portability for documents, which means you will still have access to documents even when RISCOS dies!

Macros are very important for all sorts of functions and can add great flexibility to the software.

The default Window can be changed but save default does not work you must go to "misc" and save. Use "resed" to edit the position of a window in a template file.

Some changes in the Windows version do not transfer back. You should be able to see all the Windows fonts but this did not work properly.


Frank then connected his machines together with network cable Iyonix to Windows PC. He wanted to transfer a file between machines but it only works from RISCOS to Windows from the RISC OS side. The file is given a file type extension in RISC OS in order for it to be recognised in windows. "DPScan" the Windows version is short for DPlngScan the RISC OS version. It used to be called Imagemaster originally before David Pilling had to change the name for copyright reasons.

Frank used DPlngScan to produce a JPEG and copy it to Windows using Lanman 98. In Windows it loads up Paint when clicked on.

He showed an old photo of his evacuation as a child in the war. There was some talk of the pleasures of using gas masks!

As a digression Peter had some problems with the size of displayed images in !DPlngScan and preferred Photodesk's approach; solutions seem to be change paper size or reduce actual image size. John said that Swiftjpeg would display it (SwiftJPEG v 1.12 http://pond.org.uk/swiftjpeg/).

Frank felt he had to say something about David Pilling himself. David had given a great deal of support to users over the years and released a massive amount of software and upgrades many free of charge. Unfortunately to his own detriment he never charged enough and now he has almost given up development. Martin Wuerthner on the other hand regularly charged £30 per upgrade and which was a better approach.


This software (www.accountz.com) developed by Quentin Pain and began life as Personal Accounts, later Personal Account 4 and then later as Personal Accounts Gold Edition. He then ported it to Windows as Accountz. Frank said that there had at one time been an application to move data to the Accountz version but was no longer available. It enabled RISCOS users to move to the Windows version with a data transfer facility and also buy it for a reduced cost of £39.00 incl. VAT. Quentin Pain did not intend to do any further RISC OS development. Jim Nagel of Computer Shopper had made it a Best Buy years ago. Personal Accounts will not work on the Iyonix as it was never made 32 bit. Frank never used Aemulor. He still uses Personal Accounts on Virtual Acorn. Peter said that the application for moving data was inside the Gold Edition. Frank hadn't realised that he had the Gold Edition!

It was a very useful program and was used now for the Club accounts too. The Standing Orders system was very good. It would handle direct debits as well as standing orders and if they were variable it would still pop up on the due date for you to fill in the amount.

Peter said he used it every day but had had some disagreement with Quentin Pain over problems with starting account balances if cutting over to a new financial year. Peter had always to note down the account balances and edit them with the starting balances after the cut over. It was very flexible and headings could all be moved. It was also valuable in managing forecasts and would tell you if you were likely to be overdrawn in future.

The Windows version Accountz had a slightly different appearance to the RISCOS version. You can also have sub accounts. Report generation is comprehensive and can be created on the fly. He transferred files across as a /CSV file and moved it to Windows. It produced a profit and loss account. He preferred to keep company accounts simple for presentation at an AGM and found Accountz better than Excel. He showed various accounts for the club.

He would have been able to print out if a printer had been available. Printing accounts aided auditing of accounts.
Quentin Pain says that his program is based on double entry book keeping but in a simplified way.

Michael, as Vice Chairman, gave a vote of thanks to Frank for an interesting talk despite the technical difficulties.


Frank had at the Committee's request taken Ann Lister a beautiful orchid in remembrance of Tony with which she was very pleased. In an aside from his talk he showed us some photos of this.


I hope the last newsletter submitted to Peter from the US met with approval. It was quite a contrasting experience to the UK to find free wireless Internet everywhere, even the ferry to Nantucket and a Greyhound bus. Whether that is a good thing may be a personal view, but I found it very very useful to send pictures to Flickr for friends to see, and as a backup.


ICENI Future programme

18 November Social Networking + Web applications
(Facebook, Twitter etc.)
16 December Gadgets and Party evening All
20 January Social Evening TBA All
17 February Windows 7 "The Release" Michael
17 March Mac OSX update "Snow Leopard" Gareth
21 April AGM plus update on software
iLife,Photodesk 3.09 etc.

Note the programme is flexible and in particular the February and March meetings may be swapped around.

Meetings are now on the Third Wednesday of the month unless otherwise stated.

Our meetings are held at the Bourne Vale Social Club, Halifax Road, Ipswich IP2 8RE , for a map and other details please see the website. http://icenicomputerclub.users.btopenworld.com

The first visit is free and subsequent visits for non - members is £2·50. The membership fee is £20 due from the AGM date in April, but may be reduced for those joining late in the year.


Continuing our publicity for EAUG events.

There is now a full list of meetings up to the end of the year listed on their website.


Tea/coffee/biscuits usually available.

Visitors pay 2.00 GBP for the evening, which is deductible from the

normal joining subscription if you decide to join at a later date.

See the Membership page of the website for more information:


Meetings are at the Great Baddow Village Hall, on the second Tuesday of the month

opening at 7:30 p.m. for a start at 7:45 - 8:00 p.m.

For directions see below (note the new web addresses)

http://www.eaug.org.uk or 'phone one of the contacts on http://www.eaug.org.uk/ppl.htm

Ipswich Computer Club (formerly Mid-Suffolk Computer Users Group)

No further contact this month.

For information on this group we have added a link here

http://www.ipswichcc.co.uk They have now a brand new website although they don't have a link from their old website.

They also state that they have now a full membership.


Special Notice - Insurance

"ICENI does not have any Insurance cover for computers or other equipment so please be advised that you bring machines to the club at your own risk."

However many household insurance policies will include cover away from home often with no increase in premium. (Ed.)

Our Website and Email

If anyone would like a copy of the CD of our old newsletters this could be arranged.

I am open to suggestions on what people would like to have included in the website.

Our website URL is

http://icenicomputerclub.users.btopenworld.com as a virtual domain,

it can also be reached using http://www.btinternet.com/~icenicomputerclub

Email to: iceni@woolridge.org.uk