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18 Are there any GUI's (graphical user interfaces) for FIBS? (Backgammon)

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This article is from the Backgammon FAQ, by Mark Damish damish@ll.mit.edu with numerous contributions by others.

18 Are there any GUI's (graphical user interfaces) for FIBS? (Backgammon)


Tinyfugue is a telnet client program which breaks the screen into
separate 'panes' for input and output. A specialized version exists
where a non scrolling backgammon board is displayed in a third pane.
The specialized version is available for anonymous ftp from
figment.csee.usf.edu in the directory /pub/misc/FIBS_client.

The FIBS command "help tinyfugue" will provide some hints on using
this program.

Patches made by:

David Eggert eggertd@aisb.ed.ac.uk
(window routines)

Andreas Schneider marvin@fraggel.mdstud65.chalmers.se
(board printing routines and /board command)

figment.csee.usf.edu /pub/misc/FIBS_client

From: jlehett@mailhost.gate.net
Newsgroups: rec.games.backgammon
Subject: OS/2 Native FIBS-Tinyfugue Client Available now!
Date: 11 Dec 1994 01:49:27 GMT

I just uploaded my port of the fibs-tinyfigue client to the incoming
directories of the hobbes and ftp-os2/cdrom OS/2 sites. It only works
via TCP/IP connections (SLIP/TIA are fine!) and requires the emxrt.zip
support, so be sure to get that too. The included text file tells about
the port so have a look all OS/2 fibsters!

Send along any bugs, etc, and I'll see what I can do.

John J. Lehett
Land-J Technologies

[ It has been reported (95-06) That this e-mail address is no longer in use]



xfibs - graphical interface to FIBS (First Internet Backgammon Server)


XFibs is a Motif-based interface to FIBS. FIBS allows you to play
backgammon against other people (and an increasing number of computer
programs). Unfortu- nately, FIBS is text-based and moves must be typed
in numeric notation. XFibs graphical interface provides a mouse-driven
board, which minimises text input. Below is an explanation of the
various feautures of XFibs, and what you may do to further customize
it according to your own desires. At the very end you'll also find the
backgammon rules.


XFibs draws two windows, one to display a backgammon board which is
fully resizable and scalable; and another for the text information.
FIBS is a vibrant and lively place, often with lots of banter going on
as well as matches starting and finish- ing. With XFibs you'll only
really use the text window occasionally because you can forget all
about how the board is numbered, in XFibs you move your pieces with
the mouse.

The right button brings forward a popup-menu with several choices like
"roll dice", "double" etc., selecting "roll dice" when it's your turn
will cause two dice to appear.

The left button allows you to click on a piece and drag it to where
you want to put it. You can then release the left button to drop the
piece. If the move is valid, XFibs will draw the piece at the new
location. (You can now pick-up a piece and move both dice in one
action: i.e. 24-13 with 6-5, pick up from 24, drop on 13. The
left-hand die is the default first die of a move, the the right-hand
die. If the left-hand die can't move, XFibs will try the reverse
combination. So If you have a roll in both combinations are legal, but
only one hits an opponent, you may need to drag-and-drop to guarantee
a hit or a miss).

Alternatively, you can double-click on the middle button over a piece
to have XFibs move it (again the left-hand die is the default first
die of a move).

If you decide that you didn't want to move a piece, you can take it
back (either by drag-and-drop or by popup).

Once you are happy with a move, it has to be sent to FIBS. This is
done by clicking your right mouse button again. This popup menu
changes according to what is going on. Now it says "accept move",
"undo move" etc. Between games in a match it says "join" "leave". Try
it out!

If you get a text description of the board in the output window, you
have to issue a 'set boardstyle 3' to FIBS. You may then save your
setup my typing 'save' or include this command after a 'on_login'
command in your startup file. (see below)

All in all, just fool around with it, it isn't that hard to figure
out... (At least I hope it isn't)



Torstein Hansen
Minor patches made by David Eggert (Snoopy)
Changes since version 0.7 made by Mike Quinn (mikeq)

Available from: ftp://itekiris.kjemi.unit.no/pub and/or

The source is available from:


MacFIBS greatly enhances the virtual backgammon experience; it's
backgammon played "The Macintosh Way".

MacFIBS provides a multi-window, graphical front end to FIBS , vastly
superior to the "dumb terminal" telnet scrolling text format that FIBS
uses underneath. It also makes excellent use of sound to reinforce the
backgammon playing experience.

Rather than viewing backgammon positions as a series of X's and O's in
a crude character-based text window, MacFIBS offers a full color
backgammon board. Instead of typing cryptic commands like 'm 24 22 15
14', you drag colored checkers around the board, exactly like playing
a real game. The user can select from two board sizes and choose which
color and direction to play. Real-time pip count information is also

Other windows include: a Player window to invite, get info, or watch
other players, an elegant Chat window for conversing with other
players, and a Terminal window for full access to FIBS and telnet. The
user can color code and keep private notes about other players (the
color coding is also used in the Chat window).

MacFIBS is freeware and is my contribution to the 'net. The program
requires a color Macintosh and MacTCP, and is available via ftp at the
Info-Mac Archives (sumex-aim.stanford.edu) as well as numerous mirror
sites around the world.

MacFIBS 2.0* is a self-extracting archive file:

Paul Ferguson fergy@best.com

[MacFIBS is also available on AOL, as well as Info-Mac mirror sites.



From: keithv@chiwaukum.CS.Berkeley.EDU (Keith Vetter)
Subject: TkFibs - an X interface to FIBS available
Date: 4 Apr 1994 19:31:41 GMT
Organization: University of California, Berkeley

Announcing TkFibs, an X based, graphical user interface to Fibs.

TkFibs is a tcl/tk client that provides a better interface to Fibs. It
displays two windows: one a graphical depiction of the board, the other
session window with Fibs ala the bottom two windows in tinyfugue.

I've been using the program for over 5 months now so it should be very
solid. I've run it on DecStations, SparcStations, HP 735 and Alphas.

The biggest caveat is that it requires TCL/TK to run. TCL/TK is a
very nice scripting / user interface package for X. It is available
from ftp.cs.berkeley.edu in /ucb/tcl.

TkFibs is located at ftp://shuksan.cs.berkeley.edu/pub/

Send comments, suggestions, bugs, etc to:

keith vetter



FIBS/W is a Microsoft Windows(TM) based client for FIBS. FIBS/W
provides a graphical game board and mouse-driven interface to the FIBS
server. Most operations required to play a game can be executed using
mouse, keyboard, menus or toolbar buttons.

Powerful configuration options for many common Internet host systems,
and communications service providers, and a built-in communications
scripting language allow FIBS/W to automatically dial and connect to
FIBS via the Internet with a single mouse click.

To use FIBS/W you must be able to satisfy one of two conditions:
* You must have modem access to a host computer providing telnet
services. If you can connect to the Internet using Windows
Terminal, you can probably use FIBS/W.
* You must have access to the internet via network TCP/IP, PPP or
SL/IP via the Winsock software interface. If you can find the file
WINSOCK.DLL on your system, you can probably use FIBS/W.

FIBS/W requires version 3.1 or later of Microsoft Windows, or any
version of Windows for Workgroups or Windows/NT. FIBS/W will also run
as a Windows application under OS/2 2.X. FIBS/W does not currently
support OS/2 Warp, or Netcom Netcruiser accounts (although Netcom
shell accounts do work).

FIBS/W is provided as Shareware. The registration fee is US$40. This
version of FIBS/W includes a Nag Screen (a mildly annoying dialog
which is displayed every time the program is run) but is otherwise
fully functional.

FIBS/W is available via anonymous FTP at: resudox.net in the directory
/pub/pc/windows/games/fibsw. FIBS/W is available via the web at

A WWW page for FIBS/W is available at

Best regards,

Robin Davies.



From: d9jesper@dtek.chalmers.se (Jesper Blommaskog)

"xibc" is an X11 client to the First Internet Backgammon Server (FIBS). It
is using the freeware packages Tcl, Tk and Expect. Normally, you have
to fetch and compile those to be able to run xibc, but not anymore
(provided you have a SunSparc!).



# If you need an executable (Sun-SparcOS 4.1.x only):


# If you need an executable and don't have a Sparc, then you need
# to compile Tcl, Tk and Expect on your own. Here's the ftp addresses:


(all but the patch are present at cme.nist.gov)

Features of xibc include:

* Log out from FIBS but keep the interface on the screen (maybe
iconified). Permits you to start xibc in your X startup files
and keep it up all time.

* X resource Tk*xibcLogfile that names a file where to log match
results. Example from my own file ~/.Xdefaults:

Tk*xibcLogfile: ~/spel/backgammon/xibc.log

* Resource Tk*xibcDelay that sets the programmed delayes in the
interface (the time interval between the different moves in a
sequence). Time is in milliseconds. May also be changed during
a session from a menu (but may not be saved).

Example: Tk*xibcDelay: 500

* The command line has some emacs/tcsh-style "cooked" line features:
C-n next line in history
C-p previous line in history
C-a first on line
C-e last on line
C-u delete whole line
C-d delete the character after the insertion marker
and also
C-s toggle "autoscroll" mode of the text window
C-l toggle logging of game to a log file
C-c log out from server and quit the interface

* There is a menu option called "Emergency". It may also be invoked
with "M-e". It reloads the whole board position from the server.
Nice when the interface screws up (it does sometimes).

* A menu option "Empty textwindow" will delete all rows in the text
window in access of 500. May someday become an X resource.

Don't try to push the interface to hard, that is, don't try to break
it. You will most definitely succeed (not hard at all, I guess). Since
I'm sort of an artist, I don't like breaking my own things so I
haven't really tried to find the bugs.

Special features (also called known bugs):
* Try the "look" command.
* Play a game against "You".
* Do several things at "the same time".
* Answer questions like "Accept double" or "join/leave" from the
command line, not by using the interface.
If you try them out, remember there's always the "Emergency" command

-Jesper Blommaskog, author of "xibc"


[Just a reminder to client writers. Some of us live behind 'firewalls',
or can only obtain phone access. Please remember us!]


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