Carl England must be stopped.

Earlier this month, I received a message on my Sub-Etha Software Facebook page from author (and former/current CoCo programmer) Carl England:

I knew CHR$(13) was a carriage return, so this was creating a file name that contained carraige returns. What would that do?

I typed it in to find out…

How appropriate, because the first thing I said when i saw this code was “weird.”

Of course, now I have a file on my disk that would be hard to delete. Carl said just doing:


…would take care of it. Provided, of course, you did that after running the program, while A$ still existed. Otherwise you’d have to manually type that line again and replace the SAVE with KILL.


Character 8 is a backspace, so I could sorta see what this was doing. “TEST” then four backspaces, then a period, then three more backspaces?


Also weird.

I could have had so much fun with this trick back when I was swapping disks with friends.

Thanks, Carl!

4 thoughts on “Carl England must be stopped.

  1. L.+Curtis+Boyle

    There are a lot of permutations to this technique – drawing narrow semigraphics pictures that show up one one types “DIR”, adding in backspaces to hide characters in a dir, or a subtle one to stop beginners from opening a data file for an adventure game – CHR$(143) looks exactly like a space – but trying to open the file with a space in the filename would fail with an ?NE ERROR because it was actually a CHR$(143). These tricks work in OS-9/NitrOS9 as well (with a disk editor, for example) – I have embedded clear screens and foreground/background color changes into a filename, for example.

  2. xot

    Similar tricks are possible with Apple II DOS and Robin of 8-Bit Show and Tell has a great YouTube video called “How Animated Commodore 64 Disk Directories Work”. Yes, animated.


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