During the good old days of hanging out on Bulletin Board Systems during the 1990’s, I developed an appreciation for ANSI art. I purchased a program called TheDraw and used it to create dozens of 16-color ANSI screens, some which I uploaded to other BBS’es I frequented. Some screens were for message boards, some were used as the main logon screen, while others were just plain silly. My screen-making skills were quite in demand in those days.
I still have my ANSI screen files today and wanted not only to view them but to convert them to a graphic file format for easier viewing. During my search for such a program, I came across some very old MS-DOS programs that allow me to view my ANSI screens but there was no way to convert them.
Enter PabloView, a free image viewer for Windows that not only views ANSI screens but also converts them in bulk to other file formats. Other common file formats are supported, including JPG, BMP, GIF, TIF and PNG formats.
PabloView also supports RIP (short for Remote Imaging Protocol), which allowed Bulletin Board Systems to implement a graphical interface decorated with colorful 16-color graphics. I used a program called Dead Paint to make my RIP screens and uploaded those to boards that supported RIP. It’s nice to come across a program that lets me view these relics from the past.