(termcap.info)Introduction


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Introduction
************

   "Termcap" is a library and data base that enables programs to use
display terminals in a terminal-independent manner.  It originated in
Berkeley Unix.

   The termcap data base describes the capabilities of hundreds of
different display terminals in great detail.  Some examples of the
information recorded for a terminal could include how many columns wide
it is, what string to send to move the cursor to an arbitrary position
(including how to encode the row and column numbers), how to scroll the
screen up one or several lines, and how much padding is needed for such
a scrolling operation.

   The termcap library is provided for easy access this data base in
programs that want to do terminal-independent character-based display
output.

   This manual describes the GNU version of the termcap library, which
has some extensions over the Unix version.  All the extensions are
identified as such, so this manual also tells you how to use the Unix
termcap.

   The GNU version of the termcap library is available free as source
code, for use in free programs, and runs on Unix and VMS systems (at
least).  You can find it in the GNU Emacs distribution in the files
`termcap.c' and `tparam.c'.

   This manual was written for the GNU project, whose goal is to
develop a complete free operating system upward-compatible with Unix
for user programs.  The project is approximately two thirds complete.
For more information on the GNU project, including the GNU Emacs editor
and the mostly-portable optimizing C compiler, send one dollar to

     Free Software Foundation
     675 Mass Ave
     Cambridge, MA 02139


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