[NA-User] Screen colors

k8cc k8cc@comcast.net
Fri, 29 Mar 2002 19:45:46 -0500

At 03:12 PM 3/29/02 +0000, Bob, N5RP wrote:
>Having done some computer work this end, I now have a packet screen that 
>is sort of turquoise background and pink announce text.
>I don't need that combo to help me go blind.
>What SPECIFIC color change addresses the announce window combinations?
>I just can't seem to find it in the color configuration sub menu.


The color choice for new multipliers in the announce window is "hard coded" 
into the program.  The color is actually not pink, but "bright red" against 
the turquoise background.  The combination seemed logical, but I'll concede 
the not everyone likes the appearance.  As G3SJJ noted, he commented about 
the color and I gave him the response about being "hard coded" into the 

This change was made inversion 10.45 which was released 01-26-00 so it has 
been out for a while.  We've used it in many multi-multis at the K8CC 
station (we usually leave that window up all the time).  Some of our ops 
have commented on it, but I guess they get used to it.

Let me explain why the color is "hard-coded" (i.e., fixed).  A long time 
ago, the number of NA screen colors was decided upon.  While we could have 
allowed every color to be adjusted independently, we made a tradeoff 
between flexibility and complexity (which translates into ease of 
use).  The choices we've made have held up pretty well over the years - I 
think that a lot of NA users don't even know they can change their screen 

Two years ago there was a lot of interest in color-coding the packet spot 
announcements list.  Our preference would be to not expand the format of 
the color table because then it would not be "forward compatible".  This 
would become apparent when a user would upgrade to the newer version and 
the old color choices (contained in NA.CFG) would not have values for the 
new colors.  So we decided to make the foreground color (i.e., the color of 
the letters) of all new multipliers to be red, figuring this would provide 
the benefit of new mult discrimination with the least amount of negative 

One way to quickly improve the situation would be to adjust the colors 
using CONFIG.EXE.  In proving out a solution to suggest, I've discovered a 
program bug.  If you go into the color chart in CONFIG.EXE, the 12th choice 
down says "Terminal and Announce Windows", however while changing this 
choice does change the color of the packet terminal, it does not change the 
announce window.  In looking at the code, the announce window is using the 
"Multiplier Window Inside" choice.  If you change the background color of 
this choice to white, I think you have much more readable colors in the 
announce window (dupes=black, new QSOs=bright white and new mults=red).

Based on your interest, we'll try to rethink the color choices and how we 
can better allow the user to "fine tune" these to their preference.