Syntax OVER [#channel,] switch
Location QL ROM

This command allows you to set the way in which anything is written to a specified window (default #1), whether by PRINT, LINE, BLOCK, or any other command which prints something on a window. If the supplied channel is not a window, then error -15 (bad parameter) will be generated, as will any value of switch outside of the range -1..1. When the QL is first initiated (or following a MODE command), OVER is set to 0 (see below). This can be altered by giving a different value for switch which will have the following effect:

Switch Effect
-1 Everything is PRINTed on a transparent strip. However, each pixel which is drawn on that window in the current INK (or with BLOCK) is actually xored with the colour of the existing background.
0 This is the standard mode, where characters are PRINTed in the current INK and STRIP and any pixels plotted on screen are also in the current INK.
1 This PRINTs characters on a transparent STRIP but pixels are drawn in the current INK colour. BLOCK is unaffected.

When OVER -1 is used, it may be useful to calculate how different colours will appear on screen. This can be achieved by XORing the two colours in binary, with col1 ^^ col2, for example, a line drawn in blue on a white background with OVER -1 will actually appear on screen to be INK 1^^7=6 (Yellow). A result of OVER -1 is that if something is drawn twice in the same place in the same colour, the object is effectively removed from the screen, leaving the screen unaltered. This can be seen in the example program given for IF.


A simple demonstration which shows the effects of OVER on CIRCLE, PRINT and BLOCK. See how easy/difficult it is to calculate how the end display will look:

100 MODE 8:WINDOW 448,200,32,16:PAPER 0:CLS
110 INK 2:SCALE 100,0,0
120 FILL 1:CIRCLE 50,50,35
130 INK 7:OVER -1:FILL 1:CIRCLE 50,50,35
135 PAUSE 140 FILL 0:OVER 0
150 PAPER 4:INK 7:PRINT"This is a simple circle"
160 OVER 1:PRINT"This is another line of text"
170 OVER -1:PRINT\"This is yet another line"
180 BLOCK 448,200,0,0,2


OVER 0 is set after a MODE command.


The following appears to be a bug in Minerva (pre v1.96) and most other implementations:

On Minerva pre v1.96, OVER#0 and OVER#1 are equivalent to OVER#1,0 and OVER#1,1 respectively, OVER#2 gives bad parameter, as does OVER#-1. OVER is equivalent to OVER #1,0!!

On all later versions of Minerva and SMS, the behaviour is more logical:

The channel number defaults to #1 and the switch to 0, so OVER#0 is OVER#0,0, OVER#1 is OVER#1,0 (not OVER#1,1), OVER#2 is OVER#2,0 and OVER#-1 naturally produces a ‘channel not open’ error.


OVER -1 causes various problems with the FILL command - see FILL.


Please look at INK and PRINT.