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Loading BFont files

8×8 bitmap character definitions (called BFonts) are defined with VDU 23 and read with OSWORD 10. They can be saved as BFont files (such as these) as the sequences of eight bytes that define each character.

These BFont files can be loaded to define characters, and code using VDU similar to the following is often used:

      REM file loaded to mem%
      FOR C%=start% TO end%
        VDU 23,C%
        FOR B%=0 TO 7
          VDU ?(mem%+C%*8+B%)
        NEXT B%
      NEXT C%


A more efficient way to do this is to notice that the VDU 23,C% can be done within the loop just before every eighth byte:

      FOR A%=0 TO len%-1
        IF (A% AND 7)=0 THEN VDU 23,(A% DIV 8)+start%
        VDU mem%?A%
      NEXT A%


Bitmap fonts can also be saved as streams of VDU 23 sequences. As these include the character number that is being defined start% is not needed, so it can be used as a flag so the same code can read 8-byte raw BFont files and 10-byte VDU sequence BFont files:

      REM BFont file loaded to mem%, length in len%
      REM start%=0 for VDU file, start%<>0 for raw file
      :
      FOR A%=0 TO len%
        IF start% THEN IF (A% AND 7)=0 THEN VDU 23,(A% DIV 8)+start%
        VDU mem%?A%
      NEXT A%

or:

    REM BFont file loaded to mem%, length in len%
    REM start%=0 for VDU file, start%<>0 for raw file
    :
    FOR A%=0 TO len%:IF start%:IF (A% AND 7)=0:VDU 23,(A% DIV 8)+start%
    VDU mem%?A%:NEXT A%


If len% is not a whole multiple of 8 bytes with a raw BFont file, or a whole multiple of 10 bytes with a VDU BFont file then the code will end in the middle of a VDU sequence. You should test that len% is valid beforehand with code such as the following:

      IF (len% MOD 8)<>0 AND ?mem%<>23 AND (mem% MOD 10)<>0 THEN PRINT "Not a valid BFont file"

- jgharston jgharston Dec 26, 2013

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loading_20bfont_20files.txt · Last modified: 2018/04/17 17:00 by tbest3112