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Encyclopedia > ASA carriage control characters

Mainframe printing in the days of line printers used some very simple control characters to control the movement of the paper through the printer: This does not cite any references or sources. ... Fragment of lineprinter cylinder with the type of % The line printer is a form of high speed impact printer in which one line of type is printed at a time. ...

 Character Meaning blank Advance paper one line 0 Advance paper two lines - Advance paper three lines + Do not advance; overstrike previous line 

Overstrike could be used to make bold text by printing the same line again without advancing the paper.

Mainframe printers had also 12 channels (1 through 9 and A through C) that could be assigned a fixed position on the page allowing the printer to skip a variable distance down the page to a fixed location. Normally only channel 1 is preassigned a special position:

 1 Advance to top of next page 

ASA is the abbreviation of the American Standards Association, a former name for the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), which is believed to have sanctioned these control characters. The American National Standards Institute or ANSI (pronounced an-see) is a nonprofit organization that oversees the development of standards for products, services, processes and systems in the United States. ...

These ASA carriage control characters are still used in print output from mainframe applications and software today, usually from seasoned software or applications from the days of the line printer. ASA carriage control characters are interpreted by other software before being printed on modern computer printers. This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... A computer printer is a computer peripheral device that produces a hard copy (permanent human-readable text and/or graphics, usually on paper) from data stored in a computer connected to it. ...

Example with ASA carriage control characters:

 1This is the first line on the page 0This is the third line on the page -This is the 6th line on the page This is the 7th line on the page + - Overstrike the 7th line 

Example as printed:

 This is the first line on the page This is the third line on the page This is the 6th line on the page This is the 7th line on the page - Overstrike the 7th line 

External links

  • More elaborate description at Felgall Mainframe



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