A&B Computing

Electron Micro Guide

Author: Guiseppe De Benedictis
Publisher: Longman
Machine: Acorn Electron

Published in A&B Computing 2.06

Electron Micro Guide

Any book that costs just £1.99 provokes two emotions in me. The first is one of joy that there are still reasonably priced book being sold. The second is one of suspicion that it's so cheap.

This book makes no pretence at being extensive or educational... it is simply a "quick reference guide to Basic and systems operations".

In some ways the method of presentation is similar to that of the Advanced User Guide, but that that's like comparing a Collins' Gem to the Oxford English Dictionary. The book contain eight chapters covering keys and cursors, BASIC keywords, error messages, memory map information, Operating System commands, *FX calls, ASCII codes and assembly language mnemonics.

It seems hard to believe that this multitude of information is presented in just forty - yes, forty - pages. This major feat of text compression (of which Level 9 would be proud) is achieved by giving brief, to-the-point comments to each entry. The chapters covering the BASIC commands and their uses are excellent, being alphabetically ordered and useful in their brevity, yet still remaining comprehensive, with a lot of examples given.

Unfortunately, the standard is not maintained for the entries relating to the Operating System. The chapter on the *FX calls in incomplete and commands such as *OPT are not fully documented.

However, it must be remember that this book is cheap. At £1.99 it must be recommended, if only for the excellent section of Basic.

Guiseppe De Benedictis