Listfile (G & J Bobker) Review | Home Computing Weekly - Everygamegoing

Home Computing Weekly

By G & J Bobker
Spectrum 16K/48K

Published in Home Computing Weekly #10

Listfile is a utility data filing program offering storage of about 50 records with 16K RAM, or 600 with 48K. Its most attractive feature is a machine code search routine which can locate records very quickly. But beyond that, there is little to recommend the program.

Despite misleading load instructions, the program loaded every time with LOAD"". Also misleading is the terminology used; records are called "blocks" and fields "lines".

The program is inflexible; each block has a fixed number of eight lines. There is no way of labelling lines, nor are they numbered, so it's easy to enter data in the wrong order.

There is an extra line called "infoline" which will appear on the screen, but not on the printer when a hard copy is requested.

Each line has a maximum of 26 characters. Enter more, and the line is rejected, and the screen display disrupted!

Blocks can be added or deleted, but not edited. So if you make a mistake on entry, or wish to modify later, the block has to be deleted and re-entered. While the search option is fast, it only operates on certain lines.

The 16K and 48K versions differ slightly. Both are provided on the same cassette. Files from one version cannot readily be transferred to the other.

The machine code 'search' adds a little sparkle to an otherwise mediocre filing program.