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Pictures from Sept. 1999

The views expressed in articles on this site are those of their authors.

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Copyright 1998-2024, Southern California OS/2 User Group. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

SCOUG, Warp Expo West, and Warpfest are trademarks of the Southern California OS/2 User Group. OS/2, Workplace Shell, and IBM are registered trademarks of International Business Machines Corporation. All other trademarks remain the property of their respective owners.

The Southern California OS/2 User Group

SCOUG OS/2 For You - November 1998


by Paul Wirtz

SOMEWHERE IN CYBERSPACE --- Some people like to look at pretty pictures on their desktop background.  Others, a bit more mentally centered perhaps, like to look at properly spelled words.  That's okay.  For the rest of us, we can just talk about the weather.


and it needs

Wall is a wallpaper changer for the Workplace Shell.  It doesn't write bad checks but it's a paper hanger <g> and it changes your background desktop wallpaper at a specific time interval.

You can give it a GIF or JPG file and it will create a BMP file for a background image.

You can zip up all of your BMP files, and Wall will extract each one as required.  You can thus have a background slide show.  Images may appear either in sequence or randomly, whichever you choose.

A variety of source file formats are supported.  You can use BMP, GIF and JPG of course, and also TIF, TGA, PCS and DIB.

Images may be displayed as-is or resized; you may also tile images if you wish.  Resizing and tiling may be selected for individual images.

If you only want solid color wallpaper, Wall can periodically change the color.

You can choose any time interval, such as five minutes, and you can also have the time interval synchronize itself to the system clock so an hourly change will occur, for example, at exactly 2:00.

Setup is simple.  When you first start Wall, a settings notebook appears.  There are several user-configurable options.

The Wall version 3.16 zip file is 267 KB, and takes up 549 KB when unzipped.  The README file is in HTML, a nice feature; just open it in your browser.  Wall requires a VX-REXX DLL named VROBJ.DLL, which is about a 402 KB download and takes up 902 KB when unzipped.  Unzip the files into the same directory and run the INSTALL program.  Wall is $5 shareware.  Wall's author is Ken Kinoshita,



SpellGuard is an easy way to add spell checking to any program.  It takes advantage of OS/2's single input queue and sits between it and your program, watching what you type.

I know Robert Mahoney, the author of SpellGuard, through my subscription to the BIX OS/2 conferences.  He wrote the first release of the program about four years ago, and there have been several updated versions since then.

SpellGuard is an excellent addition to any email program which doesn't have a spell checker.

When SpellGuard doesn't recognize a word it beeps and momentarily focuses on the word in question, and at the same time the SpellGuard screen comes up.

SpellGuard has a user dictionary for any words you want to add that aren't in its 77,000-word dictionary.

You can turn SpellGuard on and off at will.  That way, when you're typing in things that shouldn't be spell checked (such as HTML codes or a C program) the spell checker will leave you alone.

SpellGuard comes with an INF file which you look at with the OS/2 VIEW command.  Just click on SPELLGRD.INF, or run VIEW SPELLGRD.INF.  This file contains a lot of useful information, including how to configure the many controls available so you can customize SpellGuard exactly the way you want it.

To install SpellGuard, just unzip the 681 KB SpellGuard zip file and optional 392 KB SpellGuard U.S. English dictionary file into the same subdirectory.  Then run the INSTALL program.

The trial period, for unregistered copies, is 30 days.

SpellGuard is $25 shareware and takes up 2.2 MB of disk space.



Element.ary! gathers weather maps and information from the Internet.

The option I use is to download a new map every few minutes, and make it the wallpaper on my desktop.

Those of you who are more industrious can download a number of successive maps and then put them into one large animated file.  If you use the hourly weather maps, the motion is pretty smooth.

The weather pictures you can download include satellite images for every continent and radar images for the U.S.  You can see the images in both the visible and infrared spectrums.

Element.ary! has a built-in MPEG viewer (by InterStream) for viewing the full motion weather videos that can be downloaded.

The latest version of Element.ary! is 1.9g.  Download the 874 KB zip file and unzip it into any subdirectory.  Then run the INSTALL program.  The unzipped files take up 1.6 MB of disk space.

Element.ary! is $35 shareware.  The trial period is 30 days.


It's time to rejuvenate a few things.  Give yourself some new background wallpaper for your desktop, fix up your writing with a good spell checker, and prove Mark Twain's statement that everybody talks about the weather --- but no one ever does anything about it.

Paul D. Wirtz is a systems integrator for Volt Information Sciences, Inc. and Vice President of the Southern California OS/2 User Group.  He has a fondness for old-time radio.

The Southern California OS/2 User Group
P.O. Box 26904
Santa Ana, CA 92799-6904, USA

Copyright 1998 the Southern California OS/2 User Group. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

SCOUG is a trademark of the Southern California OS/2 User Group.
OS/2, Workplace Shell, and IBM are registered trademarks of International Business Machines Corporation.
All other trademarks remain the property of their respective owners.