Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

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flibble
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Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by flibble » Sat Feb 06, 2016 3:38 am

http://www.usborne.com/catalogue/featur ... books.aspx

I had the adventure game programming one, lots of fun :)

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by flaxcottage » Sat Feb 06, 2016 10:23 am

This is a good resource from an enlightened publisher. =D> :D
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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by chrisn » Sat Feb 06, 2016 11:28 am

These books bring back a few memories... I had a couple of these as a kid, I remember enjoying them. Nice to see them being made freely available now. =D>

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by davidb » Sat Feb 06, 2016 12:16 pm

Thanks for the link! What a nice way to start the weekend. :D

It's good to see that they're making these available for download. They don't have to do that but it's much appreciated. I expect that there's a certain amount of "enlightened self-interest" in doing so - they have new books to sell, after all. :)

It also saves me the effort of having to scan the copies I have access to. ;-)

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by paulv » Sat Feb 06, 2016 1:25 pm

That's fantastic. I'm already planning my granddaughters education in computing and these sorts of resources are perfect. She's only 6 months old but the planning is well underway! :lol:

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by JonC » Sat Feb 06, 2016 5:24 pm

I had the spacegames one, such memories of debugging 'Touchdown', lol.
Good find!
Jon
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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by Samwise » Tue Feb 09, 2016 10:51 am

I remember massively enhancing some of the programs from Computer Spy Games and Computer Space Games. :)

Never did manage to get Island of Secrets and the game from How To Write Fantasy Games working properly, though ...

Sam.

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by JonC » Tue Feb 09, 2016 10:54 am

I seem to remember some of them were buggy as printed. That could be why!
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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by Samwise » Tue Feb 09, 2016 11:01 am

Dave E at Acorn Electron World has done a marvellous job of getting Island of Secrets and many of the others working... but I don't think the game itself quite lived up to my tween imagination. :)

Sam.

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by Pernod » Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:46 pm

I also had Computer Space Games, probably still do somewhere.

Did anyone actually manage to download any? The links are now all dead.
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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by JonC » Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:08 pm

Pernod wrote:I also had Computer Space Games, probably still do somewhere.

Did anyone actually manage to download any? The links are now all dead.

Seem fine to me, just downloaded spacegames again.
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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by Samwise » Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:20 pm

I got Island of Secrets and Write Your Own Adventure Games this morning ... but it looks like the URLs have been switched to be Google Drive links ... so hopefully they should all be available again.

There was a period when they 404ing this afternoon though.

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by Pernod » Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:57 pm

Samwise wrote:There was a period when they 404ing this afternoon though.
Yep, all good now.
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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by lurkio » Thu Feb 11, 2016 2:54 am

A great blast from the past, these Usborne books, although, back in the day, I could never get the Dungeon Of Doom game (from the Fantasy book) to work. Drove me mad, it did.

Fortunately, someone with more gumption than me has debugged and uploaded the Beeb version of Dungeon of Doom here:
He's also ported Dungeon of Doom to Ruby! =D>

I've put his BASIC listings on an SSD, for convenience, together with a HERO file for a character I've christened "Wally the Wanderer", and a noddy one-level dungeon with nothing in it but an entrance and an exit! I just wanted to quickly see if the DoD programs worked. They certainly seem to.
  • [See bbcmicro.co.uk to play or download]
    The disc-image that I'd uploaded here had been downloaded 50 times.

1.png
Screenshot

image.jpeg
Offered without comment

:idea:
Last edited by lurkio on Sun Jan 27, 2019 6:06 pm, edited 2 times in total.


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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by joachim » Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:33 am

Another Usborne book was "Understanding Computer Graphics" by Judy Tatchell and Les Howarth, and it includes a game, "Bouncing Bug", which would merit a place on bbcmicro.co.uk.

I don't know why this particular book is not available on the Usborne PDF download page, but I just happen to have scans of the game listing from the Spanish edition:
Attachments
Colección Electrónica - Dibujos y animación con Microcomputadora (ISBN 84-7374-146-3)-42.jpg
Colección Electrónica - Dibujos y animación con Microcomputadora (ISBN 84-7374-146-3)-43.jpg
Colección Electrónica - Dibujos y animación con Microcomputadora (ISBN 84-7374-146-3)-44.jpg

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by lurkio » Tue Jan 29, 2019 9:53 am

joachim wrote:
Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:33 am
Another Usborne book was "Understanding Computer Graphics" by Judy Tatchell and Les Howarth, and it includes a game, "Bouncing Bug", which would merit a place on bbcmicro.co.uk.

I don't know why this particular book is not available on the Usborne PDF download page, but I just happen to have scans of the game listing from the Spanish edition:
Those scans seem to be a bit too blurry for my liking! Do they look okay to you?

:?:

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by joachim » Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:01 pm

It's an awful font for listings, too, but I think they're readable if you enlarge them to full size and apply a little skill and judgement. I could type it in myself if you like, although I may or may not be able to rig up the technology to tokenize and test a BASIC listing and transfer the result to the internet.

Although if we're skilled at format transition, another alternative would be to start from this C64 version: http://www.gamebase64.com/game.php?id=14647&d=30.

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by lurkio » Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:20 pm

joachim wrote:
Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:01 pm
I could type it in myself if you like, although I may or may not be able to rig up the technology to tokenize and test a BASIC listing and transfer the result to the internet.
That’s good of you to offer. If you’re able to type the listing into a text editor and then upload it here, one of us will be able to tokenize it by pasting it into BeebEm.

:?:

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by joachim » Wed Jan 30, 2019 4:10 am

Okay, here is the type-in. I tested it a little in RPCemu (of all things), so it should be free from typos ... but I don't have it as an .ssd image so I'm just attaching it as text (as formatted by !Edit).

(I fixed at least two vital typos in the printed listing, too: line 200 and line 650. Now I'm wondering whether the English editions were as bad?)
Attachments
bbug.TXT
(2.03 KiB) Downloaded 18 times
Last edited by joachim on Wed Jan 30, 2019 4:17 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by lurkio » Wed Jan 30, 2019 1:09 pm

joachim wrote:
Wed Jan 30, 2019 4:10 am
Okay, here is the type-in. I tested it a little in RPCemu (of all things), so it should be free from typos ... but I don't have it as an .ssd image so I'm just attaching it as text (as formatted by !Edit).

(I fixed at least two vital typos in the printed listing, too: line 200 and line 650. Now I'm wondering whether the English editions were as bad?)
Thank you! Here it is on .SSD:
  • SALTAMO.ssd
    Bouncing Bug disc-image
    (200 KiB) Downloaded 12 times
:idea:

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by leenew » Fri Feb 01, 2019 12:35 pm

Thanks for this.
Does anyone have a copy of the English version of this book?
If so, could you take a piccie of the text at the beginning of the Bouncing Bug article, so it can also be added to bbcmicro.co.uk

Thanks,

Lee.

ps I have lots of Usborne books, and have noticed quite a few "games" contained in them that aren't on bbcmicro.co.uk
I say "games" as they are all very basic BASIC!
They still need adding, and I think the best way would be to have a "Computer Spacegames" ssd, "Computer Battlegames" ssd, "Creepy Computer Games" ssd, "Computer Spy Games" ssd and "Weird Computer Games" ssd with all the corresponding games in a menu.

Lee.

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by pau1ie » Wed Feb 06, 2019 7:50 pm

leenew wrote:
Fri Feb 01, 2019 12:35 pm
Weird Computer Games
I will take this one. Which is your preferred menu?

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by leenew » Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:24 pm

Cheers Paul.
I will make a start on "Creepy Computer Games".
I will get back to you regarding the menu. I am not sure off the top of my head....

Oh! and a quick heads up... "Micro Puzzle" is already on bbcmicro.co.uk so you can just copy it to your SSD.

Lee.

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by leenew » Wed Feb 06, 2019 11:36 pm


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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by pau1ie » Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:24 pm

leenew wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:24 pm
Oh! and a quick heads up... "Micro Puzzle" is already on bbcmicro.co.uk so you can just copy it to your SSD.
I don't think we should have the same game twice, so if we take this approach should the book's ssd replace the existing micropuzzle one? Or should we split all the games out - I don't think we have another example where a single entry gets multiple games? I can see why you want to put them together - the games are quite simple. The intention was clearly to teach programming and not to distribute polished games, as they are very nicely commented in the text with suggestions to improve or change them.

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by leenew » Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:48 pm

Hi Paul,
I think these "games" are a little too basic to split out.
I agree they were more an excercise in teaching programming than anything else.
If you include all the games on the "Creepy Computer Games" SSD, I can over-write the stand-alone Micro Puzzle with a new game in the near future.

Lee.

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by pau1ie » Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:50 pm

ok, will do. I am on wiches, which is the last one. These have to be typed in on my BBC Master you understand for the proper retro vibe.

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by pau1ie » Sat Feb 09, 2019 9:27 pm

Here you go. I have checked the programs over, and they seem OK. I couldn't win Flying Witches, so can't check that winning or running out of broomsticks works, but could see a goto missing which I added in. The rest seem OK to me.
Attachments
weird.zip
Weird Computer Games
(173.17 KiB) Downloaded 23 times

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Re: Old Usbourne books, free PDFs from Usbourne!

Post by leenew » Mon Feb 18, 2019 8:13 pm

Just an update to say I have typed all the games in from "Creepy Computer Games" and "Computer Space Games", and I am starting "Computer Spy Games" shortly.

If anyone wants to have a go at "Computer Battle Games" that would be great :D
I just need all the games on one SSD.
If nobody volunteers before Friday I will start it myself [-o<

Lee
Last edited by leenew on Fri Feb 22, 2019 1:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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