Atari Explorer Online: 14-June-92 #9204From: Bruce D. Nelson (aj434@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 06/21/92-08:58:31 PM Z
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From: aj434@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson) Subject: Atari Explorer Online: 14-June-92 #9204 Date: Sun Jun 21 20:58:31 1992 -------------------------------- ** ** ** ----------------------------- -------------------------------- ** ** ** ----------------------------- -------------------------------- ** ** ** ----------------------------- -------------------------------- ** ** ** ----------------------------- ------------------------------- ** ** ** ---------------------------- ----------------------------- *** ** *** -------------------------- ---------------------------- *** ** *** ------------------------- ATARI EXPLORER ONLINE MAGAZINE June 14, 1992 Volume 1, Number 4 Issue #92-04 Copyright (c)1992, Atari Computer Corporation ||| PUBLISHER - Bob Brodie, Director of Commuications ||| EDITOR - Ron Kovacs ||| CONTRIBUTING EDITORS - Ed Krimen, Ron Berinstein ||| Z*NET NEWS SERVICE - Ron Kovacs, John Nagy | | | TABLE OF CONTENTS | | | /// Publishers Workstation.............................Bob Brodie FontGDOS commentary and more.... /// The Editors Desk...................................Ron Kovacs Commentary and Z*Net Newswire /// The Z*Net Newswire........................................... Latest Atari and Industry News Update /// Batman Returns............................................... An interview with John Skruch /// AtariWatch 1992 Calender..................................... 1992 Show Schedule Update /// ISD Announces Calamus Winners...................Press Release Winners listing for the 2cd Annual ISD contest /// Perusing Genie......................................Ed Krimen Genie messages! /// APB - Accessories-Peripherals Bulletin.............Don Thomas First part of the Atari Portfolio bulletin /// Atari MIDI Users Update.............................Ron Stein Reprint from AtariUser Magazine /// Lynx Owners Update................................Robert Jung AtariUser interviews Tom Schenck /// Commentary On Education and The Computer..........Bob Woolley User commentary /// Atari Classics Update............................Ben Poehland Atari 8-Bit Users update! New Magazine! /// IAAD Membership Directory.................................... June update! /// Supra Tech Bulletin.......................................... May 1992 Update | | | THE PUBLISHERS WORKSTATION | | | By Bob Brodie, Atari Director of Communications | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- Wow, what an exciting two weeks we've had! I've been impressed, and amazed with some of the reactions to the things that we've been doing with Atari Explorer...both the online and the printed version!! Preliminary reactions to the exciting May/June issue of Explorer have been very complimentary. Thanks for taking the time to let us know what you think. In this issue of Atari Explorer Online, we give an extra look at the Portfolio, Atari's amazing pocket PC. Don Thomas, Portfolio Marketing Manager for Atari Corporation has been putting out the "APB- Accessories Peripherals Bulletin" for the Atari Portfolio for two years now. This handy guide is a pocket size reference tool to everything that's anything for the Portfolio. We've transferred much of Don's information into ASCII in this issue of Atari Explorer Online. During the weeks ahead, we will excerpt part of the publication. If you like what you see here, you can get the real thing by contacting Don Thomas at Atari. Drop him a line at our main address in Sunnyvale: Atari Corp., 1196 Borregas Ave., Sunnyvale CA., 94089-1302, att: Don Thomas. Apologies are in order for those that are confused by FontGDOS. I heard from a number of people that they were having problems getting FontGDOS to run. Not a landslide of "...it just doesn't seem to work", but more of "...this is taking more effort than I would have liked." It seems that the majority of the problems are caused by people not reading the documentation. Please recognize that when we write documentation, we have to try to deal with ALL of our customers in the marketplace. That means the guys that are fully prepared to re-write our OS in optimized assembly code, and the people that fear they will electrocute themselves if they turn on their computer. Frankly, it's a tough job writing docs for such an expansive group. But in view of the HUGE number of downloads off of GEnie, it's also self-evident that Bill Rehbock and Mike Fulton are to be congratulated for having done a good job. The good news is that once people have FontGDOS installed, they're very happy with the results that they're getting. The new printer drivers are significantly faster than the original drivers. While I haven't personally tried it yet, I'm told that the new drivers also work just great with G+Plus from CodeHead Software. If you haven't downloaded it yet, check for the file FONTGDOS.LZH on GEnie. It's obvious to me that my time for onlines has dramatically diminished. So I want YOU to help me decide what networks I need to be on. Right now, I have accounts on GEnie, the FNET, CIS, and Delphi. It's my opinion that I'm being unfair by having those accounts if I'm not going to be online there. So this is your chance to guide my decision about what networks I should be on. I'll be tracking my e-mail in the next month closely on all of these services, looking to see where the most activity is. My guess is that it will end up being GEnie and the FNET. But I don't want to guess! Please send me your feedback on where you'd like to see me online to the following addresses: GEnie: BOB-BRODIE CompuServe: 70007,3240 Delphi: BOBBRO FNET: Bob Brodie at Node 319 I can also be reached via FAX at 408-745-2088, or send me a letter at the address listed above. | | | THE EDITORS DESK | | | By Ron Kovacs | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- In response to some of the comments being spread around during the last two weeks, there are a few points that require direct attention. The FontGDOS file we attached to the issue last week WAS NOT the complete version. The actual file was over 400K in length and contained all of the printer drivers. The attached file is capable of being used without a large amount of work, however, we do understand the confusion. Thanks for reading! | | | Z*NET NEWSWIRE | | | Latest Atari and Industry Update | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- USER GROUP OFFER ON PBS STATION While user groups across the nation are folding or suffering from declining enrollment, MilAtari Ltd., the Milwaukee Area Atari User Group, is making creative efforts to increase their membership roster. Ten membership packages were donated to the local Public Broadcasting Network for their yearly week-long television auction. Items for sale are displayed while a corresponding script is read, and the viewing audience calls in with their bids. The highest bid takes the item after a 10 minute period. All ten MilAtari packages sold and the club is now enjoying a hefty increase in membership. "I feel it is important to seek out all current Atari owners, rather than move towards a multi- platform user group. While many users are still complaining about Atari's corporate polices, and blaming their membership woes on them, we are putting our energies into promoting ourselves and our favorite computer, and the results are astonishing. I'd like to think that our group is a leader in this area." --Michelle Gross, Editor, MilAtari Limited Edition FAMILY ROOTS AVAILABLE Floppyshop recently announced the release of "Family Roots". The program is designed around a fully functional integrated workbench which is deal for both the serious and beginner user. The program is compatible with both high and medium resolutions and run on ALL Atari ST models. The user creates his or her family tree graphically on the screen by linking directly between the individuals. The growing tree can be zoomed, scrolled, altered, scanned, printed and manipulated. The database function can be viewed instantly. Marriage partner(s), children and parents are all easily and instantly accessible. The printing section supports both graphic and text output. Family tree graphics can be printed as multiple screen dumps or converted into an ASCII file. Disk output is also available. For more information or to order a copy of Family Roots, send $24.95 to: Floppyshop, Post Office Box 273, Aberdeen, AB9 8SJ. A demo disk is available for $1.00. Postage to Europe $1.50, to USA $3.00. Payment must be made in UK funds and drawn on a UK bank. Review copies also available by contacting Steve Delany at (0224) 312756. SILHOUETTE VERSION 1.37 - NOTES Two versions of Silhouette version 1.37 have been uploaded to bulletin boards and online services - an ST and TT version. You must install GDOS at boot-up in order to run Silhouette. If you already have a GDOS program installed, Silhouette can share the ASSIGN.SYS file that is available. Place the files - SILOETTE.PRG, SILOETTE.RSC, HELP.SIL in the same directory path. The last file is the demo's help file. Silhoette runs on any ST or TT with 1 MB or more of RAM, and in ST or TT High Resolution. It will also run on the Moniterm monitor. Graphics output is in the formats: SGF (Silhouette), GEM, GEM3, EPS, DXF and IMG bit-image. Graphics input is in the formats: SGF, GEM, GEM3, MacPaint, IMG, DEGAS, and TINY bit-image formats. Other New Features: Full FSM support including conversion of FSM fonts to bezier curves, GDOS Print function directly from Silhouette, Conversion of Ellipses to bezier curves. Version 1.37 of Silhouette is shipping now at a cost of $94.94 for the ST version and $103.95 for the TT version, plus shipping cost. Silhouette - $100, Arasbesque + Convector - $250, Avant Vector - $500. Current registered users can upgrade for $9.00 to the TT version. For more information, assistance in running the demo program or to purchase Silhouette: Maxwell CPU, 2124 W. Centennial Dr., Louisville, CO 80027, (303) 666-7754, M-Sa, 8AM - 5PM FBI RAIDS ALLEGED PIRATED BBS FBI agents raided a Boston computer BBS this week suspected of illegally distributing copyright software to subscribers in 36 states and 11 foreign countries - including Iraq. No arrests were made in the raid on the Davy Jones Locker BBS in Millbury, Mass., but computers and telecomunications equipment were seized, along with financial and business records. The raid was conducted using a search warrant issued on the basis of evidence gathered by investigators for the Software Publishers Association. Following the raid, the SPA filed a civil suit in federal court charging board operators with copyright infringement and seeking an unspecified amount of compensatory damages. The SPA said the BBS offered subscribers more than 200 pirated programs, such as Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, and Lotus 1-2-3. Even AutoCAD, with a suggested retail price of $3,500, was among the pirated offerings. The SPA investigation showed Davy Jones Locker even had beta copies - pre- release versions of programs sent to colleagues, selected major customers and reviewers for evaluation and suggestions - of a number of programs. Even a beta version of IBM's new OS/2 Version 2.0 operating system was available on the BBS before the final program was available from IBM. The SPA estimates software pircacy, worldwide, costs the industry $10 billion to $12 billion a year. MACRONIX SHIPS NEW FAX MODEM Macronix Inc. is now shipping its new $695 14.4 Kbps fax/data pocket modem. The unit is a V.32bis/V.42bis data modem (with MNP2-4 error correction and MNP5 data compression) and a V.17 Group III (with Class 1 and Class 2) send/receive fax modem. The system comes with MaxTalk fax software for DOS, Delrina WinFax fax software for Windows and Tradewind Software COMit data communications software. MCI'S MCGOWAN DIES OF HEART ATTACK MCI Chairman William G. McGowan died this week at age 64 after suffering a heart attack. McGowan underwent a heart transplant in April 1987, but continued as chief operating officer until last December. McGowan, who stepped aside as CEO, was replaced by president Bert C. Roberts Jr. MCI did not immediately named a successor as chairman. McGowan took over Microwave Communications Inc. from its founder Jack Goeken in 1968 and, comments The Associated Press, "built it from a firm grown out of dissatisfaction with AT&T's long distance service between Chicago and St. Louis into today's multi-billion international long distance telephone corporation." It was MCI that challenged AT&T's monopoly in a suit that led ultimately to the breakup of AT&T in 1984. QUANTUM 80MB/160MB 2.5-INCH DRIVES Quantum has unveiled two 2.5-inch hard disk drives with either 80MB or 160MB of storage. Evaluation units of the Go- Drive GRS 80 and 160 drives will be available next week. Mass production shipments to OEMs will begin this summer. Both drives are available with either an SCSI/SCSI-2 or IDE-AT interface. OEM evaluation units cost $395 for the Go Drive GRS 80 and $595 for the Go Drive GRS 160. | | | BATMAN RETURNS - ATARI WELCOMES THE CAPED CRUSADER | | | An Interview with John Skruch | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- Plug: Batman Returns, starring Michael Keaton, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Danny DeVito, opens nationwide, June 19th, at selected theatres near you! And while you're waiting in line to see Batman, Catwoman, and Penguin slug it out on celluloid, you can get psyched for the film by plugging Atari's hottest new property -- Batman Returns for Lynx -- into your portable game system! Produced by Atari Entertainment in cooperation with Warner's, Batman Returns for Lynx will be on dealer shelves the day of the premiere. Based closely on the plot of the movie, Batman Returns for Lynx is one of the most complex and realistic video games that Atari has ever produced. Though hardly larger than a movie ticket, its 256K card contains detailed animations, backdrops taken directly from the film, thrilling sound effects and music, and some of the hottest gameplay that's ever cramped a trigger-finger! Though full details are still under wraps, we were able to speak with John Skruch, Director of Entertainment Software Development at Atari's Sunnyvale headquarters and Producer of Batman Returns for Lynx, about the intense labor of producing the game in keeping with Warners' exacting and ambitious specifications. Atari Explorer: What can you tell us about the scenario of Batman Returns for Lynx? John Skruch: Not much! Until the premiere, on June 19th, we're strictly limited by non-disclosure agreements. Because the game closely follows the plot of the movie, talking about specifics would let the cat out of the bag! In fact, because of this close association, we'd like to think the game and the movie enhance one another, mutually. Though it's not necessary to see the movie in order to play Batman Returns for Lynx, many of the subtle fine-points of background, animation, characterization, and scenario can only be fully understood by someone who has. Moreover, in designing the game, we really tried to bring out the major conflicts in the film -- at least insofar as these can be expressed in a videogame action format. Thus, somebody who's played the game should be able to "get into" the movie at a deeper level. Needless to say, we're real enthusiastic about the film. Our design team is already planning a field trip to see it on opening night. AE: What about the game's overall format? JS: Batman Returns for Lynx is a classic action game that pits the Dark Knight against his arch-enemies, Catwoman and Penguin, in four, horizontally-scrolling waves. By "classic," I guess I mean about four things. First, the game was designed to make use of standard Lynx control systems, meaning that anybody who's played Lynx versions of games like Rygar, which involve a realistically-animated figure that runs, jumps, throws objects, etc., should be able to "play into" Batman Returns without having to learn anything new. Second, like all really good action games, we designed Batman Returns around classic play-elements that will appeal to the intermediate-to- advanced Lynx gamer. The foundation of the game is the hero's battle against apparently-overwhelming odds. It's important to recognize and understand the enemy, and to develop strategies for dealing with each scenario. And the game requires some learning: there are situations you can survive one way or another, but if you choose the wrong strategy, things will backfire, later on. You'll have too few weapons to overcome a level boss, or too little energy to survive threats you'll encounter, later in a wave. Overall, it's a difficult game to master. In fact, review copies of the game will have "trapdoors" built into them, to make it possible for reviewers to experience each level by deadline time. Third -- there's Batman. Truly a hero in the classic mold. We've worked really hard to portray Batman in a fashion consistent with the vision of the movie, and the classic DC comics. Our animators have worked overtime to flesh out movement in the game in such a way that some of Batman's inherent mystery and drama comes across. For example, as Batman walks, his cape curls around his shoulders and lower legs; when he leaps, it billows out around him like a pair of wings. The bat costume is supposed to strike terror into the hearts of criminals, and we think we've put this idea across, rather well. The end of the game is also particularly well-done, and well worth the effort it will take the player to reach it. AE: Who were the personnel involved in designing Batman Returns? JS: The programmers were Eric Ginner and Jerome Strach, who programmed Ms. Pac-Man, Checkered Flag, Shanghai, and, most recently, Rampart. The visuals team was headed up by Susan G. McBride, who's worked on Klax, Rampage, Warbirds, and others. Helping her were Melody Rondeau -- a really able cartoonist -- Eric Elliott, Robb Mariani, Philip Temple, and Eric Blumrich. Mariani was flown in from Atari's Chicago Entertainment Headquarters, and Temple and Blumrich were brought in on contract for the project. All made important contributions. Sound and music are by Bob Vieira, who's contributed to many of our top-selling Lynx games. AE: What was the design process like? JS: We first undertook to do Batman Returns back in September of '91. But because of the movie's tight production schedule, we didn't get a preliminary synopsis until November. At that point, we were able to begin figuring out some conceptual things, and when stills and a shooting script began showing up in January, we were ready to start programming. There was some free time early in the production cycle, but our programmers used the time to program Rampart, so it was win-win. Once programming started, the only problems we encountered were the irreducible ones brought on by designing a game based on a movie at the same time the movie is being made. For example, one of the reasons it took so long for stills and visual materials to reach us is because, according to union and individual contracts, each actor portrayed in a publicity still must approve of its use before the still is distributed. Other problems were the result of the kind of editing that goes on when movies are being shot. Editing is an important part of the creative process -- and it's common, when producing major motion pictures, for whole scenes to end up "on the cutting-room floor." Every few weeks, we'd receive another stack of adds and cuts for the shooting script we were working from. In one instance, we had to design a new wave to replace one based on scenes that didn't make the final cut of the film. Because we'd elected to have the game ready by the time the movie was released, the schedule was so tight that we had to work 12-hour days during the week, and 10-hour days on weekends, for months. We had to make special arrangements to keep the air-conditioning at Atari's Sunnyvale headquarters turned on, over the weekends. All in all, however, we found the experience of working on Batman Returns to be totally exhilarating. It's going to be a blockbuster of a film, and we really feel we've designed a game to do it justice. | | | ATARI-WATCH 1992 CALENDER | | | 1992 Shows and Events | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- June 14 - The Second Milwaukee Atari Show sponsored by the Milwaukee Atari ST User Group (MAST). Hours will be 10 AM to 5 PM at the Bowlero Red Carpet Lanes in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin. Admission will be $3, and information is available from President of MAST, Bruce Welsch at 414-463-9662, P.O. Box 25679, Milwaukee, WS 53225-0679, or GEnie address R.CARPENTE18. This event taking place this weekend, Please attend! July 18 - The Blue Ridge Atari Computer Enthusiasts (BRACE) will offer the Third Annual Blue Ridge Atarifest. The one-day affair will again be held from 10 AM to 6 PM in the Westgate Shopping Center in Asheville, North Carolina, off the I- 240 loop at the Westgate/Hilton Drive Exit. Contact Van Estes, 704-685-8358, or Sheldon Winick of Computer STudio, 704-251-0201. July 25 - Mid-Indiana ST's MIST Atarifest IV in Indianapolis. An annual strong midwest "small scale" show, last year's event brought over 500 individuals from surrounding states. Admission is $3. Contact Dan Ward on GEnie (D.WARD10), by phone at 317-254-0031, or by US Mail at 1752 Alimingo Drive, Indianapolis, IN 46260. August 15th-16th - The Connecticut AtariFest '92 at the Sheraton Hotel at Bradley International Airport, Windsor Locks, Connecticut. A joint effort by FACE, STARR, and D-BUG, the sponsorship organization is called ACT. Contact Brian Gockley, chairman, 18 Elmwood Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06605, phone 203-332-1721. August 21st-23rd - Germany's massive all-Atari computer event, the Dusseldorf Atari Show. New products and trans-oceanic deals mark this show as the Christmas of the Atari world. August 20th-30th - The year's biggest (15,000 last year) gaming and roleplay convention is GENCON, held annually in Milwaukee, Wisconsin at the MECCA Convention Center. Atari will again be represented by MilAtari, Ltd., a local user group that operates an all-Atari game area at the show. September 12th-13th - 1992's Southern California Atari Faire, also known as the GLENDALE SHOW. John King Tarpinian is president of The Hooked on ATARI Computer Knowledge Society (HACKS) and coordinator of the show. The Glendale Show has had the largest annual attendance of any continuing show series and is expected to keep that record this year. For more information about the Glendale Show, contact John King Tarpinian at 818-246-7286. September 22nd-25th - The Fall Seybold Show will be another top industry trade show specializing in high-end publishing. Atari made a major showing at Seybold last year and got extensive press attention. The show will be held in San Francisco, California and is not open to the general public. For more information, contact Atari Corporation. October 10th-11th - The Washington Area Atari Computer Enthusiasts are currently planning the 1992 W.A.A.C.E Atarifest, which has traditionally been the largest East coast Atari show. The '92 event will be held on Columbus Day weekend, October 10th and 11th, once again at the Sheraton Reston hotel in Reston, Virginia. Charles Hoffmann is now Acting President of WAACE Inc., and can be contacted via GEnie at address S.HOFFMANN, by phone at 703-569-6734, or by US Mail at 5908 Bayshire Road, Springfield, VA 22152-1146. November 16th-20th - Fall COMDEX, the biggest computer trade show in the USA. Atari will again have a major presence at the Las Vegas, Nevada show. December - The Northern California Atari Expo has been rescheduled from July to a date in December to be announced, at the San Jose Exhibit Hall, 145 W. San Carlos, San Jose, CA. This will be the second major joint show and the first in two years from ABACUS, SLCC, and Sacremento ST Users clubs. Contact the Northern California Atari Expo c/o SLCC, P.O. Box 1506, San Leandro, Ca 94577, or call 510-352-8118. GEnie Address: M.WARNER8 | | | ISD ANNOUNCES WINNERS | | | Announcement - Press Release | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- ISD Marketing, Inc. is proud to announce the winning entries in the 2nd Annual Calamus Family Creativity and Design Contest. To recapitulate; the entries could have been either text, graphics or a combination of both. Submission could and did include; business card designs, logo's, fonts, freehand drawings, posters, illustrations, cartoons and graphical effects just to name a few examples, using any one of the Calamus family of products, including, Calamus, Outline Art, the Font Editor or any combination of the three. This years contest effectively ran from August 20, 1991 until February 28, 1992 and just about everything that could possibily disrupt proceedings, did so. Murphy reigned supreme in fact. :-) Finally, winners were selected from the files uploaded into our Email address on GEnie at ISD or mailed directly to our offices. The 3 actual judges this year were: Geoffrey Earle, General Manager of Atari (Canada) Corp., Mario Georgiou, ISD's own Art Director and in-house graphic artist extraordinaire and Jesus Diaz, Art Director of Atari Explorer Magazine. As stipulated in the original Rules, although the author retains any copyrights to their entry, all winning files shall be considered 'publicly distributable files' and may be made available for downloading from CompuServe, Delphi and GEnie. As well, the winning entries will be published in Atari Explorer magazine, our official magazine sponsor, with the appropriate Author quoted and the prize won indicated. *** "Art always comments on both its subject and -- reflexively -- on *** its medium." Diaz says. "When art is produced on computer, using a *** sophisticated program such as Outline Art, it always tends to reveal *** something of the computer and the software, as these shape the *** artist's vision." *** "But what surprised us about this years entries" continues Georgiou *** "is how well-integrated the influences of computer and software *** tended to be with the overall process of artistic creation." *** "We think the Atari is a great tool for artists" concludes Geoffrey *** Earle. (Editor's Note: He is certainly biased but I happen to agree *** with his conclusion.) :-) I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you that submitted an entry. This year the entries were truly remarkable in many areas and I am quite proud to have had the pleasure once again, of co-sponsoring this contest. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank John Jainschigg and Atari Explorer, who acted as co-sponsor. Wait until you see the top 5 winners in the upcoming issue. I think you will join with me in congratulating their efforts. And the winners are: First Prize Winner of $1,500.00 worth of AGFA Compugraphic fonts for use in both Outline Art and Calamus, (compliments of ISD) has been won by Dan Marusich of Absolute Visuals out of Tuscon, Arizona. His logo designs are simply first class! Second Prize Winner of an Atari SLM605 laser printer (compliments of Atari) goes to Rolf Berger of Images Unlimited in Ottawa, Ontario. Some of you might already be familiar with Rolf's Acura and F16. Third Prize Winner of a complete Calamus SL package (compliments of ISD which I happen to know he already owns so I will replace it with equivalent value in fonts and new Calamus SL modules if he so chooses) goes to a familiar face, Joey (REALM) Sherman, whose "Grog, Bob, and the Almost Oval-Looking Red Thing with No Real Purpose," a personal favorite of mine, can only be described as incredible! In fact, it must be seen to be believed! :-) Fourth Prize Winner of complete font packs compliments of and from both Cherry Fonts and MS Designs, as well as $100.00 connect time usable on either Compuserve, Delphi or GEnie, (compliments of the respective service) has been won by Jamie Todd of Chimera. Jamie and his band, Radio Silence, also use their Atari equipment for music composition and performance. Fifth Prize Also Winner of complete font packs, compliments of and from Ms Designs and Cherry Fonts as well as $100.00 connect time to either Compuserve, Delphi or GEnie, (compliments of the respective service) goes to Steve (T-Shirts are my life) Kaleita for his T-Shirt design, ROBOT. Some of you might be familiar with Steve's entry, in fact, you might even be wearing it. :-) All of the above Winners plus the following 5 entries receive a one year subscription to Atari Explorer Magazine, compliments of Atari Explorer: Honorable Mention: James Tackett's excellent Clipart font, CLIP001.CFN. Honorable Mention: "Flowers of the Mind" by Don Harris. WOW. :-) Honorable Mention: A stylized glider design by Martyn Phillips. Honorable Mention: Michael Nilsen's entry presents his vision of a city. Honorable Mention: Robert Gillies submitted an amazing Saxophone Player. I will upload all of the above entries to the online services. In most cases you will require either Calamus 1.09, Calamus SL or a Calamus DEMO version of either to view them. Once again, my thanks to all that submitted entries to this years contest. Your participation made this contest a great success for the entire Atari community. Nathan Potechin President ISD Marketing, Inc. | | | PERUSING GENIE | | | Compiled by Ed Krimen | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- Editor Note: Some messages may have been edited for clarity, correct spelling, punctuation, and grammar. A LITTLE FONTGDOS HELP ---------------------- -=> In the "Atari Corporation Online" category (14) -=> from the "FSM GDOS" topic (18) Message 8 Sun May 31, 1992 B.POSTON [Barney] at 19:57 EDT The only doc that was in the full FontGDOS download (file #24310) says "Our install program will set your system up so that everything will be placed in the correct location." Hmmm..., in almost 1/2 a meg download and I didn't get anything called INSTALL.PRG! What do I do now? Barney Poston ---------- Message 12 Mon Jun 01, 1992 FB [ST Librarian] at 22:18 EDT Barney, The first thing you have to do is install either the .CPX files or the .ACC files. Don't put FONTGDOS in the AUTO folder yet though. Make sure you read the docs because you set up everything from the FSM Font Manager and the FONTGDOS Printer selector. One writes the new ASSIGN.SYS and the FSM Font Manager writes the EXTEND.SYS file. Fred Beckman ST File Librarian ======================================= STICK WITH THE ROMS ------------------- -=> In the "Atari Corporation Online" category (14) -=> from the "TOS 1.4 Questions" topic (10) Message 117 Sat Jun 06, 1992 TOWNS [John@Atari] at 19:14 EDT To remind those that don't know.. There are significant differences between newer versions of TOS and the older versions. It is actually possible to cause data damage to your hard disks if you boot an older soft-loaded TOS from disk. Please..do yourself a favor. Stick with the ROMs. -- John ======================================= DOVER RESEARCH NEWS ------------------- -=> In the "Hardware" category (4) -=> from the Dover Research Corp. (AlberTT & ISAC) topic (28) Message 142 Tue Jun 02, 1992 J.CRASWELL at 19:42 EDT Whew! Message -o- Ramma. Thanks Jim A. for helping out (as usual!). The phone number is (612) 492-3913. Dover Research is really NOT a big company. Just a VERY busy small company. My advise on the [NEC] 3D [monitor] is this. Buy the ISAC in 800x600 mode and switch to a 48KHZ monitor when you can afford to do it. The change to the ISAC is really simple. Just plugged in parts to swap. LEONARDO is a design of mine that is meant to sell with Lexicor software. We have made up units that work in VGA speed for our friends in the software world to develope on. Currently we are waiting for the release of a super cool chip that will let us output NTSC and SuperVHS as well as a rock solid VGA screen for non Video type output. We are also hoping that the software (in the form of applications and drivers) will all be available at the same time so that the board won't lack a reason to exist. The VGA only cards "may" be made available to people who are interested in them when the software (and the new output) are finished. We have not released it for a number of technical reasons. The main one being that I did not approve of the NTSC output that we had on the VGA only cards. It was pretty sad and we don't want another piece of "JUNK" for the ST market. I want to put out the best. The Standard for others to try and match. ======================================= INTERSECT SOFTWARE IS STILL ALIVE --------------------------------- -=> In the "Software Library and Other Utilities" category (2) -=> from the "I'm looking for..." topic (25) Message 138 Wed May 27, 1992 D.BOWMAN9 [DAVE B] at 21:05 EDT Hello there all, Just got off the phone with a spokesman for Intersect Software and learned of the following: 1. They are still in business and supporting the Atari!! 2. Latest version of Revolver is 1.1 (with MultiTOS coming out do not expect a newer version) 3. They just got the new version of Lattice C and are rewriting Interlink to take advantage of all ST/STE/TT (and Falcon?) resolutions. Will have a Remote answer mode. 4. New address is - 3949 Sawyer Rd., Sarasota, Fl 34233 5. Phone nos.: voice 1-813-828-0130 BBS 1-813-924-4590 800# THEY NO LONGER HAVE The person I talked to seemed very nice and helpful. Give their BBS a call and tell them to keep up the work and hope to see another Atari product out soon. later, dave b ======================================= BERNOULLI, BERNOULLI -------------------- -=> In the "Hardware" category (4) -=> from the "Removable Hard Drives" topic (55) Message 168 Sun May 31, 1992 K.FARRELL [Kevin] at 07:32 EDT Yes, it is possible to use Bernoulli removable drives with the ST. I currently have two, a 44 meg and the 90 meg. Both are the Bernoulli transportables. I use the 90 meg version only for hard drive backups. They are daisy-chained together off of my ICD AdSCSI Plus host adapter. The 44 megger is older and has an access time of around 54 mS. The 90 is newer and has an access time of around 34 mS. ICD's formatter formats the cartridges with no glitches. The transportables are great!!! I use them with my IBM PS/2 at work, and also with an IBM laptop. I just have to remember which cartridges are for the ST, which ones are for the IBM, and which ones are for the Mac (I have a GCR, which also works flawlessly with the Bernoullis). - Kevin - ======================================= CALAMUS SL: THE UPS AND DOWNS ------------------------------- -=> In the "ISD Product Support" category (16) -=> from the "Calamus S/SL" topic (20) Message 149 Sat Jun 06, 1992 S.SAMUELS [ICE CREAM] at 07:39 EDT Lou, "Be patient" ...??? Hell man, I've been patient! I've been patient for the first release of SL for over a year and 90 days patient for the upgrade! It may sound like like heresy to some of you (it would have to me too, a month ago!), but I'm now looking into a 486 machine. Why? Because Adobe Illustrator 4.0 for Windows is now released and this month Quark Express for Windows is being released. AND they both offer cross- platform-compatible files with their relatives on the Mac platform. Why? Read the PUBLISH magazine articles about what platform has the best, most complete program for controling color separations, with chokes and spreads and UCR. Go figure....I can't stay in business with telling clients to be patient while other people can do what they need right now! Corel, Harvard Draw, Streamline, Postscript, Quark Express, Word Perfect 5.2, Type 1, True Type, 24-bit true color, Video Capture, 3D-Studio, Image In, Lotus, Publisher's Prism, etc. and Lino output on 'every corner' in ANY major city. Think about it folks. Is the question still "Power Without the Price?" Seems to me the real question is "Power or No Power"...never mind the price! ice cream (I really do!) PS....I know and appreciate Nathan's and Mario's and Lou's noble work and effort to bring SL up to speed. I'm not angry with any of you. Please know that! It's just that DMC and Atari has either got to make some changes and corrections fast if they expect to fly in the face of the rest of the world of DTP. SL may be the 'only game in town' in Germany, but that just ain't so in North America. Believe me, I WISH it were so! ---------- Message 150 Sat Jun 06, 1992 S.RAMIREZ [Sam] at 07:55 EDT To: Everyone at ISD and others involved in making SL a reality. I have had Calamus SL since about the first week of May and I just now completed the tutorial section! Hey! Don't laugh! Remember what happened to the hare? It's just that I haven't had the time spend in front of my computer recently. However I have been able to follow the messages on GEnie since I have access to a computer and modem at work. I am just now beginning to understand what it is that people are talking about. I realize that by completing the tutorial I have learned to use about 1 tenth of 1% of the features in SL. At this rate, I should become fully SL literate by the time Color Laser Printers @ 1200 dpi become available at consumer prices! Let me just say that I am impressed with the program despite its apparent bugs and omissions (I say apparent because I have used it so little that I have hardly experienced malfunctions). Great work [DMC] and ISD! :^) It is ironic that while not having had time to play with SL, I have had learn PageMaker 4.0 for Windows at work. Since I made the mistake of letting people, at the radio station where I work, know that I was into DTP my boss figured he'd get PageMaker for the PC for me to do some of the promotional material. To make a long story not as long, I had to produce a cover page for a cassette album that we were sending to listeners who had donated to our station (Non-Profit). I had a whole 2 days of fooling around with PM and unaware of the upcoming task. I must admit that I find PM a nice program to use. However, I immediately noticed that it is not as flexible as SL (or 1.09N for that matter!) nor as configurable. Right now I have about 20 hrs. on PM and about 2 hrs. on SL. Though I find that PM handles a little smoother I consider SL to have the edge in control. I know this isn't much to evaluate these two programs on but it's what I think at this time. Just let me say once again, "Calamus ist ein schon kuntstwerk." Sincerely, Sam Ramirez ---------- Message 181 Tue Jun 09, 1992 N.B.GARDNER [BRUCE] at 01:05 EDT Nathan, I took your advice and ordered a Jim Allen of Fast Technology's Turbo 030 board to speed up SL. I have had it installed now for just over a week and would like to give some input to others who are considering something like this. In short, I almost couldn't be more pleased with the results. SL is so fast now, that you can easily edit text right in the window. I really liked all the features that SL offered over 1.09n, but I seemed to be constantly using the older Calamus because I just didn't have the time for the screen updates. SL is much easier to learn just because everything updates so quickly. On complex screens they are still not instantaneously redrawn, but are very acceptable. The board itself is impressive in its simplicity. The hardest part of installing the board is removing the old 68000 chip. Jim is always just a phone call away and seems to me to be as helpful and Nathan or Mario. Bruce Gardner ---------- Message 183 Tue Jun 09, 1992 ISD [Mario] at 12:58 EDT As we have received many comments on the HP DJ 500C I have made the time to outline the procedures that I have learned work best for me. If you follow these steps, you should have absolutely no difficulty using your HP DJ500C and Calamus SL. After trying some of the various samples of paper that I have, I realized that this printer is not really capable of producing the color black from the CYM color inks used in the unit. (Perhaps a third party vendor has a better cartridge?) The best approximation I have been able to achieve is a very dark green color. This is due to the actual chemical composition of the inks and the reaction that they have when they are used on certain kinds of paper. The best results have been achieved using some of the premium clay coated laser papers such as Hammermill Laser plus. I have also achieved excellent results using coated stocks such as Chromecoats and a synthetic paper called Kimdura. These coated stocks should be allowed extra drying times as they do not readily absorb the ink. To correctly use Calamus SL with the HP DJ500C the following settings must be used on the DIP switch banks: Bank A: Switch 8 in the up (on) position. Bank B: Switch 2 in the up (on) position. S.Sanders2: 1. The Mount and Print module will soon be available and is just the thing for doing print signatures. The module allows you to select a variety of signature templates. As to availability and price please look for a product mailout in the near future. Outline Art II is planned for release later this year. and it will do color as well as a few other enhanced capabilities. 2. The problems you are having with rasterisation of TIF images is very much a result of incorrect settings in the raster generator. To correct this please do the following: Create one frame of each frame type on a page (text, raster area, line, raster and vector graphic), then select all frames and execute the raster generator module. The first dialog will appear. Click on the frame icon and the second dialog will then appear. Change your settings to those you have found to be the best for your printer. Once you have adjusted your settings click on "Done" in both dialogs and then save your settings for Calamus SL. All documents you subsequently create will have these new settings. 3. High resolution bureaus require the following information. a. The type of media to be output; Film or Paper. b. Resolution; 1270/2540 dpi c. Treatment or effect; Mirrored and/or inverted. Scale 100%, 200% etc. d. Include any special fonts not part of the bureaus library. The Raster generator should be applied to the document to allow the settings to take effect when outputting at high res. See some of the sample CRI files that are included on your disk (2540_50.CRI and 2540_60.CRI). All the Best Mario @ ISD ======================================= | | | APB - ACCESSORIES * PERIPHERALS BULLETIN | | | By Don Thomas (Part 1) | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- This, the newest edition of A.P.B., includes several new features. With the growing popularity of the Atari Portfolio handheld computer, the demand and use of A.P.B. has increased substantially. Now A.P.B. is even easier to use as an important Portfolio resource. You will note that the library of software and peripherals is growing. Atari Computer Corporation has spent significant time and capital working with third parties to help produce new products swiftly (sometimes at the expense of new development on their own). A.P.B. includes most of the known products available in the United States. See the European Software page for information regarding international products. The catalog is now alphabetized for easy reference. New items are duly noted and a new graphic icon system has been implemented for your convenience. The back of the book includes the popular tutorials and tips. The continued success of this catalog is 100% dependent on your valued patronage. We look forward to issue new updated issues and discover new ways to support your long term enjoyment of the Portfolio. Please tell your friends and business associates how much you can do on an Atari Portfolio and how much less it cost than the other guys! 'Til next issue . . . Donald A. Thomas, Jr. A.P.B. Editor Many of the products described in this catalog are marked by a graphic icon. The icon will help to immediately identify whether the product is a peripheral or software and the type of application. Below is an enlargement of the icons and their meanings. Note that the designations refer to what the product includes, NOT what the product requires. For instance, a terminal program requires a serial interface, but may not include the interface when purchased. Also note that the designations of software and peripherals are those which are "run" or are "attached" directly to the Portfolio. Products which compliment the Portfolio, but are used on other systems are not illustrated with an icon. This reprint will continue in future editions.... AC Adapter (HPC-401) This economical addition to the Portfolio is a must! It pays for itself. Connect it to the Portfolio at night or while using other peripherals and extend battery life significantly. Buy two adaptors. . one for home and one for the office. See your Atari Computer Dealer. $12.95 each. ADCALC (ACC-1000) Here is a powerful print advertising calculator and dataase. Perfect for media buyers who agonize over "what-if" scenarios and how production fees influence advertising costs. Includes Co-Op calculator, automatic dailing, automatic line/inches conversions and much more. ($5.00 DEMO available on floppy). See your nearest Atari Computer Dealer or call Artison Software at (209) 239-1552. $149.95 Alpha Paging Interface (SAMpage) Use the Portfolio to send text messages to alpha pagers. The text paging interface allows users to send messages using the Portfolio's built -in auto -dial speaker. After entering the message, the user holds the speaker to the telephone handset during transmission. The system features voice prompts for use and notification od successful transmissions. For more information, call TekNow at (602) 266-7800. $89.99. Astrologer (HPC-728) Now you don't have to worry about missing your morning newspaper to find out what the future holds for you. Find out what the stars say about love, wealth, health and pleasure. Available soon! Atari Explorer Magazine Keep up with the latest news on Atari products and peripherals. Read up to date reviews on hundreds of third party software and hardware products which support all of Atari's extensive line of computers. Each bi-monthly issue packed with features including the hottest mail order sources. See your Atari Computer Dealer or call (218) 723-9202 to subscribe for home delivery. $14.95 per year. PORTFOLIO TIPS The Atari Portfolio is a powerful tool. It will grow with your needs and require only a basic understanding of proper computer care for trouble-free use. The following are hints and tips for optimum productivity and enjoyment from your Portfolio computer. Some users may consider the suggestions as basic computer knowledge. Others will benefit a great deal as they use the Portfolio more and more. If you seem to have difficulties with Serial Interface file transfers, make certain the Serial Interface is initialized. This can be done within the RS-232 port option in the SET UP menu. Install peripherals and Memory Cards only while the screen of the Portfolio is turned "OFF". This avoids occasional electrical static during installation and better ensures that the operating system of the Portfolio "knows" that these devices are installed. If your batteries appear to offer unreliable operation, gently tilt the Portfolio from side to side. Should you suspect that the batteries may not be firmly in place, then responsibly bend the positive metal connector in the battery compartment outward to induce a tighter battery fit. Some "AA" batteries are slightly different in length depending on manufacturer and job lot. When installing batteries in Memory Cards, mark a date eight to ten months later on the label in pencil. Reference that date for battery replacement. This timeframe should apply to all size cards. If using a Memory Card (which is highly recommended), set the size of your "C:" Drive to 8K. If you plan to use the Calendar/Diary alarm functions, then set the "C:" Drive to 16K. From that point on, read and write your data files directly to the "A:" Drive. Refer to the FDISK command for setting the size of the "C:" Drive. The Portfolio User's Manual will make no attempt to teach the use of DOS, Spreadsheets or Word Processing. These subjects sometimes justify accredited college courses depending on the level of expertise you wish to apply. It is suggested that users visit their local library or bookstore for books on these subject(s) if additional information is required. Using the Editor, write the following batch file and save it as A:\AUTOEXEC.BAT. The line: A:\Update requires that an update program be moved to your RAM card from the FILE MANAGER card. If you do not have access to the UPDATE.COM program, then omit this command line from your batch file. @Echo Off Prompt $p $ A:\Update Cls App Many Portfolio Users' Manuals contain an error in reference to the creation of a CONFIG.SYS file. The proper entries are as follows: FILES=20 BUFFERS=32 COUNTRY=001 If a MEMORY FULL error is encountered, try changing the BUFFERS=32 entry in the CONFIG.SYS file to BUFFERS=8 and retry the operation without using the FILE MANAGER environment. Once low batteries begin to disrupt operations, do not rely entirely on an AC adapter. It is important to replace bad batteries even if the AC adapter is being used. The BATTERY LOW message is reliable only under specific circumstances. Do not depend on seeing it during the limited time that the Portfolio is capable of detecting and displaying such a condition. You may change the battery in the RAM Memory Card without losing the data saved on the card. To do so, install the Memory Card in a Portfolio while plugged in an AC adapter. Press a key to turn "ON" the screen and replace the battery before the screen shuts itself off. Conservative users may wish to copy the files to the "C:" Drive as a precaution. The battery used in a RAM Memory Card is a CR2016 and may be found in most electronics stores. You may prolong the length of time before the screen shuts "OFF" by occasionally pressing any key. If you encounter a DEVICE WRITE ERROR while attempting to save a file to the "A:" Drive, check the write protect switch. Make certain it is in the "OFF" position. If this error is encountered on the "C:" Drive or on the "A:" Drive while the write protect switch is "OFF", then there may not be enough room on the drive for the file. You may salvage most of your work by deleting small portions of your file as it exists in memory and making another attempt to save the file. If you installed the RAM Memory Card while the screen is "ON", the Portfolio may not know that the card is installed. In that case, try to save the file on the "C:" Drive. A warm boot may be required if the operating system needs to be informed that the "A:" Drive is installed. A DIVIDE BY ZERO or SYSTEM ERROR may occur for a number of reasons. If encountered, perform a warm boot and make an attempt to copy "C:" Drive files out to a Memory Card. Even if the operating system appears to be restored after that, perform a cold boot through the battery compartment to ensure that the problem has been adjusted internally. The Portfolio will make every attempt to reload the last file you used in each application. If an error occurs while the application attempts to load the last file, delete the PERMDATA.DAT file within the SYSTEM directory on the "C:" Drive. You may also change your CONFIG.SYS file to set a lower number of buffers. Performing a warm boot after doing so may release enough memory to load the data file properly. You may also attempt to enter the application out of the FILE MANAGER environment as the FILE MANAGER does require space in RAM. Many people misinterpret the SAVE YES/NO option when exiting an application incorrectly. When selecting "YES", the existing file on disk will be erased and a new file is created. If the file in memory is incorrect, incomplete or corrupted, the old data will be permanently lost. It is suggested that you always answer "NO" when exiting applications to avoid this possibility. To save a file, use the F1 option labeled as SAVE AS and deliberately name the file as you wish. The F1 window in all applications may also be accessed by pressing the Atari key. If you accidentally exit the FILE MANAGER and wish to have it operating again, turn the Portfolio off, install the FILE MANAGER ROM Card and type A:\fm at the system prompt. Avoid entering and manipulating files within the SYSTEM directory on the "C:" Drive. The only exception is the DIARY.DRY file which must be in that directory if you wish alarms to sound. To determine the available space on a Disk, use the DIR command from the DOS prompt. The CHKDSK command makes many calculations and assembles groups of numbers which are often confusing. The "ON" and "OFF" designations of the Portfolio refer to full operation, not complete power. A Portfolio which is turned "OFF" must still monitor alarms, data, date and time. This is important to know for expectations of battery longevity. The ADDRESS BOOK application may be used as a database for more than just names, addresses and phone numbers. You may also establish files for inventories, recipes and other subjects. If you detect a periodic "blip" across the screen while the Portfolio is turned "OFF", check the display modes within the SET UP menu. Make certain they are all set to normal or the batteries will drain at an accelerated pace. The Portfolio is engineered to operate and interact with state-of-the- art peripherals. Sometimes you may experience incompatibility with the slower responsiveness of battery operated printers or Atari Computer Corporation may find things in the operating system which can be enhanced or corrected. A small program exists in the public domain called: UPDATE.COM. A copy of this file may be found on the FILE MANAGER/TUTORIAL ROM Card. Later versions may be found on on-line services and on the Atari bulletin board. If you are experiencing problems which appear unexplained, obtain the latest version of this program and run it immediately following a cold-boot. See an earlier tip for automatically installing the UPDATE.COM program using an AUTOEXEC.BAT file. The products and services mentioned in this brochure are trademarks or registered trademarks of their manufacturers. Prices and descriptions have been compiled from the most up-to-date materials available, but are subject to correction or change without notice and may vary by specific model. Prices indicated are Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Pricing (MSRP) indicated in U.S. funds and do not include applicable shipping or sales taxes. Prices may vary when purchased from a retailer. Atari assumes no liability for the claims of products and services of other companies. Products manufactured by Atari are protected by the prevailing warranty at time of purchase. Copyright =1992 Atari Computer Corporation. | | | ATARI MIDI USERS UPDATE | | | Making MIDI More: Wired For Learning | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- The following article is reprinted in AEO by permission of AtariUser magazine and Quill Publishing. It MAY NOT be further reprinted without specific permission of Quill. AtariUser is a monthly Atari magazine, available by subscription for $18 a year. For more information on AtariUser, call 800-333-3567. Since personal computers became popular, they have been heralded as great teaching aides. A computer is very patient, accurately tracks your progress, and offers you the convenience of learning at your own pace in the comfort of your home. The best software can create drills especially to correct your individual weaknesses. Previously we've explored MIDI equipment to make music, but this month we'll take a look at how the built-in MIDI capability of your Atari ST/TT can be put to educational use. Your Atari computer is a like having your own private music instructor. You'll need one or more music lesson programs and some MIDI compatible music equipment. Actually, an instrument is optional for some of the lesson software that allows you to use the computer's internal sound generator and your ST/TT keyboard. While you're able to use the keyboard and/or mouse to interact with these lessons, you'll need a MIDI compatible instrument (usually a keyboard) to gain the full benefit of most lessons. MIDI compatible keyboard instruments are available for $100 and up from Casio, Kawai, Yamaha, and many others. Much of the music educational software currently available is reasonably priced, especially compared to private lessons. And you can learn and practice as often and long as you desire. There are programs available for different levels of musical ability, although most of the programs tend to focus on basics for the absolute beginner. The more advanced programs tend to focus on ear training. Two basic categories of these programs are tutors and drill aides. Tutors provide education about various musical concepts (e.g., rhythm patterns, scales, chords, etc.). The graphic displays greatly reinforce the concepts being presented by showing how the music would appear if written out (i.e., as in sheet music) and also which keys of a keyboard are applicable to the lesson. Drill aides facilitate practicing various musical concepts, such as: rhythm patterns, scales, chords, sight reading, and ear training. Because your Atari allows for a two-way connection to an electronic musical keyboard, the computer can issue a drill to perform, and monitor your performance. A LOOK AT THE MARKET MIDImouse Music has developed a set of four individual programs that combine tutorials and drill aides for beginning and intermediate music students. Note Wizard, Scale Master, Chord Magic, and Rhythm Time carry a list price of $69.95, discounted if all four are purchased together. Each of the programs shares a common user interface and method of operation with various levels of difficulty; the user must complete seven exercises in a row in order to successfully complete any exercise. Each also records statistics for each session with the option to view, print, or save the statistics to disk so that you can monitor your progress over time. All of the packages include a built-in MIDI data recorder, useful but no substitute for a full function MIDI sequencer. Lastly, each program allows some customizing of its operating parameters and will operate using either a color or monochrome monitor. Note Wizard provides instruction for the basics of notation, sight reading, and ear training. The tutorial section gives a basic understanding of music notation. The drill section plays sequences of random notes, and the user must accurately repeat each sequence within an allotted amount of time. Options include having the notes displayed in standard notation on the computer screen as the program plays them (to facilitate sight reading) or not (to facilitate ear training). Levels of difficulty include more sharps and flats as well as an expanded range of notes. Scale Master provides instruction for learning musical scales. The tutorial section defines a scale and indicates the notes that comprise a particular scale. The drill section allows the user to select among several types of scales (e.g., major, minor, blues, etc.). The program will instruct the user to play a specific scale and will record the time it takes the user to complete each scale. The levels of difficulty progress from playing a single octave either up or down to playing two full octaves up and down. Chord Magic provides instruction for learning musical chords (a set of notes usually played together). The tutorial section gives the definition and construction of various chords. The drill section allows the user to select among several types of chords (e.g., major, minor, seventh, etc.). Chord Magic will instruct the user to play a specific chord and will record the time it takes. The levels of difficulty are related to an increasing presence of sharps and flats. Rhythm Time provides instruction for learning rhythm patterns, and is a good supplement to Note Wizard as it facilitates in sight reading of patterns. One unique aspect is a "dictation mode" where the program will allow the user to design rhythm patterns using the mouse, then play the resulting pattern. The drill section allows randomly generated rhythm patterns; as with Note Wizard, the user has the option to sight read the patterns from the screen or from memory after the program plays the pattern. Upper levels of difficulty offer increasingly challenging rhythm patterns. C-LAB software (developers of Creator and Notator) offers Aura, designed for a more advanced user. Without any tutorials, Aura offers complete drills including drills for learning intervals. A unique feature is Aura's ability to analyze chords; you play any chord and Aura will provide a set of definitions of the chord. As its name implies, Aura is predominantly designed for ear training, although it's also useful for learning and sharpening other musical skills. One of the best attributes of Aura is its level of customizing; you have the option to configure a plethora of parameters from basic operations, specific chords and scales, to create fully customized automated lesson plans. Aura is one of the most useful, thought-out, and flexible programs that I've seen. If you have a basic grasp of music theory and want to shape up your skills, then give Aura a listen. Although not reviewed in time for this article, Steinberg (developer of CuBase) also offers a music education program called The Ear. Additionally, many of the national BBS's (particularly CompuServe and GEnie) have public domain and shareware offerings including text file tutorials, and programs. MIDImouse Music, Box 877, Welches, OR 97067, 503 622-4034 C-LAB Software, 716 Claridge Drive, Pacifica, CA 94044, 415 738-1633 Steinberg - Jones, 17700 Raymer St, Northridge, CA 91325, 818 993-4091 --Ron Stein | | | LYNX OWNERS UPDATE | | | A Walk on the Flip Side - AtariUser Interview | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- The following article is reprinted in AEO by permission of AtariUser magazine and Quill Publishing. It MAY NOT be further reprinted without specific permission of Quill. AtariUser is a monthly Atari magazine, available by subscription for $18 a year. For more information on AtariUser, call 800-333-3567. [Robert Jung, AtariUser LYNX reviewer, offers this special feature: an interview with Tom Schenck, staff programmer at Knight Technologies. This is the software group that did the Lynx games DIRTY LARRY from Atari, and QIX and THE GUARDIANS: STORM OVER DORIA from Telegames.] AtariUser: Welcome, and thanks for participating. Why don't you introduce yourself? Tom Schenck: Well, I'm 21 years old, and I've been programming since eight. My father introduced me to computers. He does research for the Navy. I used to go with him on the weekend, and saw these games with cool graphics written in Pascal. Anyway, I've got a beautiful wife, a 7-year old son, and a brand- spanking new baby daughter. My major influences in life would be Douglas Adams, Monty Python, Star Trek, and Broderbund. KNIGHT WORK AU: Tell me about Knight Technologies. How does the company work? TS: We're a contract-driven company. We don't do publishing ourselves, but let others do it for us. Games thus far have been the ideas of others, or conversions. THE GUARDIANS is our first original title. That's proving to be fun. TS: The amount of control depends on whose idea it is. If we come up with the idea, we have more control of what goes into the game. If Atari or Telegames [gives] us a design, we have less control. AU: What are your feelings on the Lynx? TS: There's no doubt that the Lynx is the most capable portable on the market. It's got the built-in features that make it very fast graphically. In fact, we're going to slow down DIRTY LARRY; It goes too fast now. I would like to see more TV and magazine ads for the Lynx. There have been suggestions, many good ones. Maybe we'll see some ads soon. AU: What else would you like to do with the Lynx? TS: I would like to work on ComLynx games, since that's really exciting. The ability to hook 16 lynxes together -- it boggles the mind. I also would like to see a continuation of original titles; games such as SLIME WORLD and CHIP'S CHALLENGE are being ported to the Genesis and home computers. I don't want to see thousands of arcade conversions, though there are some good arcade games. I would also not like to see a bunch of Mario games or "me too" games. AU: Is programming the Lynx different or easier than other video game systems? TS: It's one of the lowest cost systems I know of. As far as making programming easier, what Atari has done is included a large macro library. To draw an object on the screen, [the programmer gives] a single "command" and the assembler does the rest. Also, developing on an Amiga is important. We draw in an Amiga paint program and bring those images right over. The only adjusting is to account for the LCD screen. GETTING DIRTY AU: Tell us something about DIRTY LARRY: RENEGADE COP. TS: To start with, DIRTY LARRY is my project; I am the only programmer on it, and this is my first Lynx game. The original spec called for the ability to move into and out of the screen, but the problem came when we added enemies -- The game slowed down and almost crawled to a halt. Atari and us took a good look and yanked out that bit. I had to kill part of my baby! AU: So what can we expect when it reaches the stores? TS: It's a side-view scrolling game with really cool enemies. My favorites are the arsonist who [ignites] himself and runs after you, and one of the henchmen of the drug lord. The action is intense, and each level is long and hard. The nice thing is the variety of enemies. We've got a big woman who comes at you with a chain, and a baseball player who doesn't know what a baseball looks like. You are going to be amazed at the graphics that are stuck into a two- megabit (256K) card. If you look close, you might see part of our office in the City Street section. We had to scrap two levels: one because of space, and another because it was boring. Amazing enough, it's turned out to be a better game; the level looked nice, but didn't fit the story. GUARDING DORIA AU: Knight Technology's most exciting project now is THE GUARDIANS: STORM OVER DORIA. Where did it come from? TS: We were trying to come up with ideas for our next project after QIX. We were talking about calling companies offering to do conversions to the Lynx, and we did call one or two. We started thinking about doing an RPG, and John [Smedley], the president, brought in his idea from long ago and far away. We looked it over, made a few changes and many additions, then sent the proposal to Telegames. AU: What about THE GUARDIANS is worth special attention? TS: First, it supports four players [ComLynxed] at once. This is the first real RPG that allows that kind of action. It's going to be interesting to see people's reaction to what we've done. Second, there's TONS of animation and graphics in there. I thought we'd have to cut back to fit things like plot, purpose, or gameplay. Thanks to a few tricks, we've managed to not cut anything. AU: Are there plans for a sequel, or a series? TS: That depends on the response. So far, it looks real good. In fact, we had people comment on how good the game was while we were at the Winter CES, even though it was only half done at the time. AU: What projects does Knight Technologies have in the future? TS: Now we're targeting on THE GUARDIANS and the end of DIRTY LARRY. We'll be getting started on a few others soon, one coin-op conversion and possibly another original, but we haven't decided between three different ideas. Ask me again and I'll know, but if I told you now, I'd have to kill you. Security reasons, you know. AU: And on that note, thanks for your time. --Robert Jung BIO: Robert Jung is a 24-year-old software engineer, longtime video gamer and die-hard Lynx fan who's bought and reviewed every title ever made. He can be reached c/o AtariUser, or on the Internet at email@example.com. | | | COMMENTARY ON EDUCATION | | | By Bob Woolley - San Leandro Computer Club | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- rrrrrrccchhhh.... (that sound you hear is my soapbox being set up) It must be the time of year - maybe the fact that my daughter is graduating from college, but I would like to talk about education for a while here. Specifically, computers in education. You see, one of the kids we know is graduating and got his own computer as a graduation present. After eight years of grammar school, four years of high school and four years of college, it turns out the thing he could use the most is his own personal computer. Not that his employer won't have one for him to use..... it is just something he needs to get to know on his own. His machine, whether it is the same as the ones at work or not - his personal computer. About 16 years late, I would say. Of course, 16 years ago we didn't really have personal computers, so I guess it is unreasonable to ask why he didn't get one when he started his public school experience. Not so for those little nippers starting their education next September. Why aren't they getting a computer going in, instead of after they get out? Yeah, I want to make little pocket protector nerds out of every kid in America because that's what I like to do, right? Maybe hook electrodes right into their neural "wiring" and fill their minds with "proper thoughts". ***** Try and be objective here, OK? We spend 12 years teaching our kids decimal arithmetic because that is what they are going to be using while they are adults. We teach them English because that's what they will be communicating with as adults. We teach them American Government because that's the system they will be participating in as adults. What do we teach them about the tools they will be using as adults (primarily computers) - zip! Some schools teach a little computers to a few students, but no comprehensive program exists on a state level or even a community level of any consequence. First question out of your head is: what do they need a personal computer for as adults? I can't honestly be advocating a computer for everyone - only 1 person out of 100 would do anything useful with it! How can you be so sure? Using a computer as a tool for 12 years, learning some simple BASIC programming, being exposed to the internal workings of your personal computer - do you think you won't have any use for it afterward? The main reason most people have no use for a computer is that they don't know how or what to do with it. After 12 years, a major market will exist for all kinds of uses for a computer - and, everyone will already own one and know what to do with it! Ever consider what people do at their job? Mail this, FAX that.... Talk to so and so, write a memo..... Send an invoice, look up a fact.... You think they won't use their personal computer for any of that? Mail order something? Balance your checkbook? It's all a matter of how familiar you are with your machine. OK. Let's leave that question and talk about what the kids would do with them first. Maybe your question will answer itself. Take mundane things, like books. Ever see the typical schoolbook? I'll bet the average lifespan of a book is maybe 5 years. Just in the first year or two, notes, highlites, answers, creases, tears,,,, all appear with grim regularity. In the first few years, before the child can read well, does a book talk? Suppose you buy 5000 books for your school district and before you use them all they go out of date? What if the teacher wants to use just part of a book? Is a book interactive? Can it clarify or expand a concept on command? Can you give books on the same subject but with different levels of difficulty to a whole class? Can you "go to the Library" and get any book from your seat in the classroom? Can you do all that with a computer? Sure! How about classroom work? The teacher scanning up and down the aisles, looking over your shoulder to see if you were doing your work properly - ready to lend individual assistance to those who might need it. Homework? All those papers to grade at once from the class? Turn in a work in progress at regular intervals? Work at the blackboard? Read someone's paper out loud? Work quietly in a small group? Can all that be done on a simple network in the classroom? Sure! From a teacher's perspective, how much time do you think they spend in a classroom just handing out and collecting papers? Making copies of classwork? Grading and administrative requirements? What should a teacher be doing - paperwork? (your computer plugged into the network before the bell? Are you in class at all? A netmail excuse for absence?) We had about 30 to 40 kids in classes when I was in school (oh, so long ago). We still have 30 to 40 kids in a class now! Can't we do better than that? Is productivity not applicable to the classroom? Let's speculate about the activities during a typical school day where everyone has a computer that they can really use. - 0800: arrival. Log into network, read announcements, get schedule of mandatory and optional lectures for the day, and submit all homework and work in progress. - 0820: Traditional verbal delivery by instructor. Written notes on paper or computer. - 0900: End of first period. 20 minute break. - 0920: Interactive, city-wide network lecture in advanced topics class. - 1000: Break. - 1020: PE in the gym. - 1200: Lunch/PacMan tournament. - 1300: Computer Aided Instruction per individual. Homework from previous day delivered in "mailbox" from instructors. - 1340: Break. - 1400: Another verbal lecture. - 1440: Break. - 1500: Optional, hands-on labs/clubs. Study hall. - 1640: School closes. What is so different with a computer? Well, second period is one thing. You can't have an advanced topic class where the students are spread all over a geographic area without some sort of communication network. Visual images, data and voice can all be transmitted thru the computer network in both directions. For a physically handicapped child, participation from home or a special site will appear as normal as any of his classmates (as will the fourth period discussion). A student's schedule is not cast in concrete each day - it can be generated as the student body signs in each morning. Information can be delivered more quickly thru the network, leaving more break time between each period. Personal interactions during breaks are as least as important as formal study in school. This is all in addition to the normal computer word-processing, database and graphics functions that you would have in your personal computer. Maybe 256K of RAM, a 40 meg hard drive and a 640x400x256 monochrome plasma display. That should be sufficent for the average person's computer needs thruout school. Not to mention the entertainment. Think you could have knock yer socks off interactive videos on your CD ROM? Do you think a professionally done educational presentation wouldn't be more interesting to students than your average, dry lecture at the blackboard? Could you send questions to each computer during a test in a different order to discourage "helping"? So, why doesn't every kid get a computer in school? Same reason most things aren't done sanely and sensibly, money and politics. How about cost? Well, if we look at producing something in large quantities (millions), we can integrate it down to just a few chips if it isn't too complex. Just how complex does this educational machine need to be? It should have some sound capabilities, versatile graphics, and be fairly fast. It does not need to be able to do super hi-res graphics, sort megabytes of data, do CAD or anything of that nature. While any hardware implementation will surely become outdated every few years, the basic design needs to be no more complex than today's smaller laptop systems. Memory, storage capacity and the like can be improved over the years. Clock speed can be increased as the geometry is scaled downward. Othewise, for purely educational purposes, nothing extraordinary is required. This would be a base system for every person educated in this state (country?). You want whiz-bang stuff, buy it yourself! Maybe hook it up to your HDTV at home, or your virtual reality station. One thing for certain - with a standard, well defined system in use in every school, the clone makers will get the price down to nothing in no time! But, we have to have a standard. Can you imagine the Great American Marketing Machine reacting to the proposal that each school child be given a computer? Talk about a battle royale..... You'd have blood in the streets. The company that won would make an indecent amount of money while his competition would just dry up and blow away! Think MS-DOS is a standard? What if every kid grew up with one? What would anyone buy after using their ABC machine for 12 years? You talk about a concrete standard. Of course, everyone and his brother will write software for the thing, which is good. In fact, the data structure, graphics modes, sound format - everything will become a standard accross all computer lines. What's the solution? A committee to build a new standard? Sure. Just what the Great American Bureaucratic Dragon would love. Take maybe 25 years and give us all things to all people. Cost maybe 100 trillion dollars to develop. Why not just use an existing commercial system that is no longer being actively marketed? Get the owner to place it in the public domain and allow anyone who wishes to develop hardware and software? It would have to be well designed, extensible, simple enough to be grasped by the average person, and very flexible for long life. Now, what classic computer would fill that bill? | | | ATARI CLASSICS UPDATE | | | By Ben Poehland | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- To All the Denizens of The Digest: Believe it or not postcards from the now-defunct Mail-in Campaign are still drifting in--- like so many lost snowflakes. Poor Jeff keeps thinking this thing is all done, then another card appears. Amazing. Following the Final Report issued by the Campaign Committee earlier this month, Jeff McWilliams sent all the cards he had received as of that date to me. I've spent the past several weeks arranging them in alphabetical order & reading every single one (WHEW!!!). The vast majority of comments on the cards were overwhelmingly positive - Good luck, Thank You, Best Wishes, Go Gettum, Bite 'Em in the Leg, that sorta stuff. Of the 550-odd responses, there were 4 I removed from the database. I'll share those with you. One was from a fellow who tried to pad the ballot box by sending 2 cards. OK for banana-republic elections, maybe, but AC doesn't go for that style of doing things. Another was from someone who said he'd gone on to a 386. *Sigh*, we can't do much about that. The 3rd was from <an obviously misguided> individual who said the 8bit was a dinosaur that should be allowed to die.... GGRRRRRRR!!! And the 4th was from someone whose usergroup consists of both 8bitters & ST'ers who felt AC would accomplish nothing but create strife in the larger Atari community & felt that beefing up the diluted 8bit coverage in all the other mags was the way to go. This last point is a legitimate concern, one which I've dealt with before but will address once again. The diluted coverage scattered among 3 or 4 magazines is what's killing us. Do the math yourself, it's murderous. The 8bitter who wishes the most complete coverage would be compelled to subscribe to AIM, CN, AE, & perhaps an overseas mag like P-6 or 8:16. The subscriptions amount to upwards of $100! AND EVEN THEN, you wouldn't get as much coverage as we used to get in a year of ANTIC! As to AC splitting the community, I don't it will happen. If Unicorn publishes AC, we already have a plan to share some material with AIM so that readers already satisfied with AIM (i.e., the straddler market) won't be forced to make an unhappy choice between AC & AIM. It is not the intention of AC to compete with AIM or to drain off AIM's 8bit coverage completely. It is anticipated AIM's 8bit coverage will remain about the same whether AC gets published or not. We do hope that the *quality* of 8bit material appear in AIM will improve, since it will draw upon the resources of AC. My own position in the community has been drawn into question, so perhaps I should make that position clear. Being an ST owner myself, I am entirely satisfied with the notion that the two communities should peacefully co-exist. I am adamant that AC will NOT be a platform for ST-bashing! Although the two communities have diverged more sharply in recent years, they still share a common historical ancestry & upon occasion are still able to contribute to each other in minor ways on technical issues. However, I do not feel that the 8bit community should be sacrificed just to keep peace in the family. We have a right to exist, & I personally am prepared to defend that right against all comers - ST, Mac, IBM, or whoever. We (AC) will not offend anyone, but neither will we permit the sheer mass of the larger community to snuff us out. At least, not if I have anything to say about it! We ask only for our place in the sun, nothing more. 'Nuff said? OK, on to other things... The magazine is slowly coming together. Work on the Publication Manifest, a documnet describing the organization/function of the magazine, has begun. We already have several commitments for staff positions, & even a couple articles ready to go in our flagship issue. During the next few weeks I'll be making dozens of personal contacts across the country & around the world (gawd, my phone bill!) to secure the helping hands we are going to need. Someone recently mentioned having a list of vendors/developers published periodically in AC. As some of you probably know, during my tenure at Current Notes this was one of my pet interests. It is so important I shall be seeking to fill a staff position for a Resource Editor, whose primary task will be to investigate new sources & keep us up to date. I am more dubious of the suggestion to publish names /addresses of individuals, as that infringes on issues of individual privacy. However, there WILL ber a "Swap 'N' Shop" column where people can place private ads, & such info could appear there if that's what people want to do. One neat thing is, the ads will be FREE to paid subscribers (subject to certain limitations of course which are still being worked out). Keep faith, progress is being made even if it isn't visible. We beg your patience. All the ingredients are in place, but the dough must be allowed to rise before we can bake the bread. Some additional thoughts on the content of AC: First, I was impressed by the number of people who are relative newcomers to the 8bits. There is a small but steady influx of new users into our market, & they are starting from scratch. Atari Classics will not ignore these people. Classifying the anticipated content of AC according to degree of difficulty, I'm striving for coverage as follows: 10% of the magazine's content geared toward beginners, 50% toward intermediate users, & 40% for advanced users. That's not carved in stone, it depends ultimately on what we receive from authors. I would like to see a column dedicated to beginning users. Regarding the subject matter of coverage, according to comments on the return cards hardware ranks first: hardware tutorials & hardware modifications. There as also substantial interest in PD software reviews, the PD market generally, utilities & applications, educational programs, games, & programming tutorials. That's a lotta bases to cover. I anticipate that AC will certainly have a stronger hardware emphasis than ANTIC did, & that its orientation toward the game market will be weaker than ANTIC's was. My guess is that we'll strive for 40% hardware coverage, 45% software coverage, & 15% topics of genral interest. One item in particular that is highly desirable would be a column on "Computers & The Law", discussing in a general way the issues of piracy vs. the current state of our market & how they might be seen in light of the pertinent legal principles involved. If anyone knows a patent attorney, busines-oriented paralegal, or someone w/experience in the publishing/software industry, please steer them to me. Even one or two articles would be most welcome. AC will be neither a hardware hacker's journal nor a game magazine, but such coverage as it does offer in those areas will be of high quality. Those of you who saw the type of hardware projects I present in CN will have an idea of the quality we shall strive for in AC. Software reviews will be of similar high quality. I am particularly partial to reviews where a new program is compared to another- perhaps more familiar- piece of software, which gives the reader a point of reference. | | | INDEPENDENT ASSOCIATION OF ATARI DEVELOPERS MEMBER DIRECTORY | | | Compiled June 7, 1992 | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- Please note: Most IAAD members support users through the bulletin board areas on GEnie. References in this file to "Cat" or "Top" refer to the ST RT bulletin board area; other RTs are designated by name. We welcome your comments and inquiries! James C Allen FAST TECHNOLOGY P.O. Box 578 Andover, MA 01810 508 475 3810 (fax) 508 475 3810 GEnie: J.ALLEN27 Cat4 Top11 Todd Bane Soft-Aware Unlimited 334B North Euclid Avenue Upland, CA 91786 714 985 2348 (fax) 714 982 8409 GEnie: R.SKRALY Cat6 Top4 Steve Barker Flying Pigs Software P.O. Box 688 St. George, UT 84771 801 628 5764 (fax) 801 628 5713 GEnie: STEVE-B BBS: 801 628 5773 David Beckemeyer Beckemeyer Development Tools P.O. Box 21575 Oakland, CA 94620 510 530 0451 (fax) 510 530 9637 GEnie: D.BECKEMEYER Intrnt: david@bdt.CO Cat2 Top34 Robert M Birmingham 13630 SW 101 Lane Miami, FL 33186-2814 305 385 1942 GEnie: R.BIRMINGHA4 CIS: 73637,1120 Cat25 Dorothy A Brumleve D.A. Brumleve P.O. Box 4195 Urbana, IL 61801-8820 217 337 1937 GEnie: D.A.BRUMLEVE Delphi: DABRUMLEVE CIS: 71451,1141 Cat29 Top6 Gilbert Callaghan Double Click Software P.O. Box 741206 Houston, TX 77274-1206 713 977 6520 (fax jack) 713 977 6520 GEnie: DOUBLE-CLICK CIS: 75300,577 BBS: 713 944 0108 Cat30 Phil Comeau Phil Comeau Software 43 Rueter Street Nepean, Ontario Canada K2J 3Z9 613 596 4081 (fax P.C. Soft) 613 825 6721 GEnie: P.COMEAU1 Cat13 Tops7,20 Jay Craswell Dover Research Corp. 321 W. 4th Street Jordan, MN 55352 612 492 3913 GEnie: J.CRASWELL CIS: 73016,27 Craig W Daymon ICD Inc. 1220 Rock Street Rockford, IL 61101 815 968 6888 (fax) 815 968 2228 GEnie: C.DAYMON ICD RT John Eidsvoog CodeHead Technologies P.O. Box 74090 Los Angeles, CA 90004 213 386 5789 (fax) 213 386 5735 GEnie: J.EIDSVOOG1 Cat32 Lauren Flanagan-Sellers Goldleaf Publishing Inc. 700 Larkspur Landing Circle, Suite 199 Larkspur, CA 94939 415 257 3515 GEnie: WORDFLAIR Cat35 Rick Flashman Gribnif Software P.O. Box 350 Hadley, MA 01035 413 584 2565 (fax) 413 584 7887 GEnie: R.FLASHMAN Cat17 David Fletcher Ditek International 2800 John Street, Unit 15 Markham, Ontario Canada L3R 0E2 416 479 1882 (fax) 416 479 1990 GEnie: DITEK Cat6 Top9 / Cat7 Top7 George Geczy JMG Software International, Inc. 892 Upper James Street Hamilton, Ontario Canada L9C 3A5 416 575 0283 (fax) 416 575 3201 GEnie: JMGSOFT BBS: 416 389 9064 Cat6 Top32 Keith Gerdes Double Click Software P.O. Box 741206 Houston, TX 77274-1206 713 977 6520 (fax jack) 713 977 6520 GEnie: DOUBLE-CLICK CIS: 75300,577 BBS: 713 944 0108 Cat30 Tyson T Gill GT Software 12114 Kirton Avenue Cleveland, OH 44135 216 252 4272 GEnie: T.GILL7 CIS: 73467,777 Cat17 Tom Harker ICD, Inc. 1220 Rock Street Rockford, IL 61101 815 968 6888 (fax) 815 968 2228 GEnie: ICDINC ICD RT Doug Harrison 1018 Quail Creek #303 Shreveport, LA 71105 318 869 1292 GEnie: D.S.HARRISON Cat2 Top15 Craig Harvey Clear Thinking P.O. Box 715 Ann Arbor, MI 48105 313 971 8671 GEnie: C.HARVEY BBS: 313 971 6035 Cat2 Top40 John 'Hutch' Hutchinson Fair Dinkum Technologies P.O. Box 2 Los Alamos, NM 87544 505 662 7366 GEnie: FAIR-DINKUM Cat29 Top4 Hagop Janoyan PDC, Inc. 515 Wing Street Glendale, CA 91205 206 348 4276 (fax) 818 242 5692 or 206 745 5980 GEnie: H.JANOYAN3 or PDC.SW Cat13 Tops12,21,22 Cat10 Top11 / others Charles F Johnson CodeHead Technologies P.O. Box 74090 Los Angeles, CA 90004 213 386 5789 (fax) 213 386 5735 GEnie: C.F.JOHNSON Delphi: CFJ CIS: 76004,2232 Cat32 Todd Johnson Cherry Fonts Unit #4, 2250 Tyner Street Port Coquitlam B.C. Canada V3C 2Z1 213 386 5735 (CodeHead) GEnie: CHERRY.FONTS Cat32 Top27 Deron Kazmaier Soft-Logik Publishing P.O. Box 290070 St. Louis, MO 63129 314 894 8608 GEnie: DERON.K SOFTLOGIC RT Gene Kane Xerox Corp 101 Continental Blvd. M/S ESC1-945 El Segundo, CA 90245 310 333 2707 GEnie: GENEXRX CIS: 70475,440 Alex Kiernan HiSoft The Old School, Greenfield Bedford England MK45 5DE +44 525 713716 (fax) +44 525 718181 GEnie: HISOFT Cat3 Top11,14,15 Cat2 Top30 Hans-Peter Labude Managing Director ICD Europe GmbH Postfach 13 17 Am Goldberg 9 6056 Heusenstamm Germany +49 6104 67581 (fax) +49 6104 6403 GEnie: ICD.GMBH ICD RT Paul W Lee Double Click Software P.O. Box 741206 Houston, TX 77274-1206 713 977 6520 (fax jack) 713 977 6520 GEnie: DOUBLE-CLICK CIS: 75300,577 BBS: 713 944 0108 Cat30 Dave Link HiSoft The Old School, Greenfield Bedford England MK45 5DE +44 525 713716 (fax) +44 525 718181 GEnie: HISOFT Cat3 Top11,14,15 Cat2 Top30 Bob Luneski Oregon Research Associates 16200 S.W. Pacific Hwy Suite 162 Tigard, OR 97224 503 638 6182 (fax) 503 620 4919 GEnie: B.LUNESKI1 Cat2 Top42 Henry Murphy MS Design 611 West Illinois Street Urbana, IL 61801 217 351 6412 (fax) 217 384 8469 GEnie: H.MURPHY Cat5 Top2 Tom Nielsen eSTeem, inc. 72 Shades Crest Road Hoover, AL 35226 205 942 8390 (fax) Answ. Serv.: 205 941 4910 GEnie: ESTEEM Cat29 Top7 Dave Nutkins HiSoft The Old School, Greenfield Bedford England MK45 5DE +44 525 713716 (fax) +44 525 718181 GEnie: HISOFT Cat3 Top11,14,15 Cat2 Top30 W. David 'Dr. Bob' Parks WizWorks! P.O. Box 45 Girard, OH 44420 216 539 5623 GEnie: W.PARKS3 Cat7 Top5 William Penner Medical Designs Software 3235 Wright Avenue Bremerton, WA 98310 206 373 4840 GEnie: BPENNER BBS: 206 479 2157 Jay Pierstorff Safari Fonts 606 W. Cross Street Woodland, CA 95695 916 666 1813 (fax) 916 666 1813 GEnie: J.PIERSTORFF Nathan Potechin ISD Marketing, Inc. 2800 John Street, Unit 15 Markham, Ontario Canada L3R 0E2 416 479 1882 (fax) 416 479 1880 GEnie: ISD CIS: 76004,2246 Delphi: ISDMARKETING Cat16 Roger Richards Synergy Resources 354 N. Bolten Avenue Indianapolis, IN 46219 317 231 4158 (fax) 317 356 6946 GEnie: R.RICHARDS2 Cat2 Top19 George Richardson Merlin Group, Inc. 96 Hoyt Street Kearny, NJ 07032 201 998 0932 (fax) 201 998 4441 GEnie: G.RICHARDSO1 A Ridley Canoe Computer Services GEnie: A.RIDLEY1 Chris Roberts DragonWare Software Inc. P.O. Box 1719 Havre, MT 59501-1719 406 265 9609 GEnie: DRAGONWARE Cat13 Top4 Eric Rosenquist Strata Software 94 Rowe Drive Kanata, Ontario Canada K2L 3Y9 613 591 1922 (fax) 613 591 1922 GEnie: E.ROSENQUIST CIS: 72711,2503 BIX: e rosenquist Cat17 Scott Sanders Software Development Systems 996 Redondo Avenue, #404 Long Beach, CA 90804 310 987 2205 (fax) 310 595 9799 Orders: 800 237 4SDS GEnie: S.SANDERS2 CIS: 71760,2140 Cat2 Top39 Lee Seiler Lexicor 415 453 0271 GEnie: L.SEILER Cat25 Nevin Shalit Step Ahead Software, Inc. 496-A Hudson Street Suite F39 New York City, NY 10014 212 627 5830 GEnie: NEVIN-S Cat6 Top23 David M Small Gadgets by Small, Inc. 40 West Littleton Blvd. #210-211 Littleton, CO 80120 303 791 0253 (fax) 303 791 6098 GEnie: DAVESMALL GADGETS RT Carl Stanford MS Design 611 West Illinois Street Urbana, IL 61801 217 351 6412 (fax) 217 384 8469 GEnie: C.STANFORD Cat5 Top2 John Stanley DynaSoft Systems 4157 Lyndale Avenue South Minneapolis, MN 55409 612 825 4215 GEnie: JLS Internet: firstname.lastname@example.org Chuck Steinman DataQue Products P.O. Box 134 Ontario, OH 44862 419 529 5197 (fax) 419 529 9797 GEnie: DATAQUE.1 CIS: 71777,3223 Delphi: DATAQUE Darren Stevens Mind over MIDI Productions PO Box 56522 Lougheed Mall Postal Outlet Burnaby, B.C. Canada V3J 7W2 604 420 6266 (fax) 604 444 4424 GEnie: MINDOVERMIDI Cat 10 Top 15 Craig S Thom ICD, Inc. 1220 Rock Street Rockford, IL 61101 815 968 6888 (fax) 815 968 2228 GEnie: CRAIG.S.THOM ICD RT David Thompson JMG Software International, Inc. 892 Upper James Street Hamilton, Ontario Canada L9C 3A5 416 575 0283 (fax) 416 575 3201 GEnie: D.THOMPSON66 BBS: 416 389 9064 Cat6 Top32 John Trautschold Missionware Software 354 N. Winston Drive Palatine, IL 60067-4132 708 359 9565 GEnie: J.TRAUTSCHOL BIX: jtrautschold CIS: 73250,572 Cat8 Top2 Melinda Turcsanyi MUSICODE Software 5575 Baltimore Drive, Suite 105-127 La Mesa, CA 91942 619 469 7194 GEnie: M.TURCSANYI Ralph Turner Index Legalis Publishing Company P.O. Box 1822-3 Fairfield, IA 52556 515 472 2293 GEnie: R.TURNER10 Michael B Vederman Double Click Software P.O. Box 741206 Houston, TX 77274-1206 713 977 6520 (fax) 713 977 6520 GEnie: DOUBLE-CLICK CIS: 75300,577 BBS: 713 944 0108 Cat30 Clayton Walnum Taylor Ridge Books P.O. Box 78 Manchester, CT 06040 203 643 9673 GEnie: C.WALNUM1 Delphi: ANALOG4 Chet Walters WizWorks! P.O. Box 45 Girard, OH 44420 216 539 5623 GEnie: C.WALTERS1 Cat7 Top13 Norm Weinress Weinress Consulting 3236 Velma Drive Los Angeles CA 90068 213 876 7704 GEnie: N.WEINRESS Cat4 Top12 Doug Wheeler ICD, Inc. 1220 Rock Street Rockford, IL 61101 815 968 6888 (fax) 815 968 2228 GEnie: DOUG.W ICD RT Steve Whitney 655 South Fair Oaks Avenue, I-103 Sunnyvale, CA 94086 815 968 6888 GEnie: S.WHITNEY Cat13 Top14 Dan Wilga Gribnif Software P.O. Box 350 Hadley, MA 01035 413 584 2565 (fax) 413 584 7887 GEnie: GRIBNIF Cat17 Paul Wu Omnimon Peripherals, Inc. One Technology Drive, Bldg 1E, Suite 301 Irvine, CA 92718 714 753 9255 (fax) 714 753 9253 GEnie: WUZTEK.OPI Delphi: OPI Cat4 Tops12,17,31,32 | | | SUPRA TECH BULLETIN | | | Important SupraFAXModem V.32bis Information | | | ---------------------------------------------------------------- This product is designed to be plug 'n play for most users. However, some software and computers may have problems properly communicating at high speeds with our new modem because they were designed without anticipating this new level of performance. This bulletin is designed to help you avoid problems and provide more up-to-date information. Please read it carefully, as it may save you substantial time tracking down any problems. We will be updating this bulletin as we collect more current information. The most current data we have is always available on the Supra BBS at (503) 967-2444. We recommend you use the BBS as your first source for up-to-the-minute information. Modem Compatibility We have tested the SupraFAXModem V.32bis with nearly all major brands of modems with excellent results. At this time, we have not identified any major brand that does not work properly with the protocols we support. If you cannot make a connection, it is possible that the modem uses a proprietary protocol that we do not support. Some of these include US Robotics HST, CompuCom, Telebit, and Hayes V Series. You should be able to communicate with most of these at 2400 bps. Some of these modems feature "dual-standard" operation, with their proprietary standard as well as V.32 or V.32bis. However, if the dual-standard feature has not been configured properly, you may not be able to connect at V.32 or V.32bis. It is also possible that the remote modem may need a firmware upgrade if it was purchased more than a year or two ago. Several pioneers in the high-speed modem business have released multiple upgrades to fix compatibility problems with early units. Line Noise Problems As a general rule, the faster that you are communicating, the better your phone lines need to be. When you get up to 9600 and 14,400 bps, it is critical that you have clear lines from end to end. Noise can be introduced by your local premise wiring, the local or long distance connection, or at the remote premise. Some problems you may be able to fix, and some you can not. If you have problems with every high-speed attempt, you should try using the modem at another location to determine if that corrects the problem. If so, check your local wiring or phone system. If the problem occurs occasionally when calling the same location it is probably a long distance connection problem. You may want to try a different company or dial the 10288 prefix to get an AT&T line. If you only have problems when calling one location, it is probably a problem on their end. The V.32bis specifications state that modems must be able to shift down or up in speeds when the remote modem requests it to do so usually in response to line noise problems. However, initiating this request to change speeds is optional to implement and is not provided on many modems, including the Supra FAXModem V.32bis. We will change speeds, we just won't initiate the process. For some people this may be important and we anticipate supporting it in a later version of firmware that will be available at low or no cost. Be sure to send in your warranty card so we have you in our records. If you anticipate having problems, you can lock the modem to lower connection speeds by changing its software configuration. First, issue the AT N to enable specifying the connection rate, Next, you can issue AT S37=0 to connect at your serial port rate (set rate to 9600 bps for example) or you can set S37 to the maximum desired rate. Refer to the table on page 53 of the Reference manual for more information. Serial Port Speed Problems Many computers have not been designed for the high-speed performance requirements of the SupraFAXModem V.32bis. Most computers work correctly some of the time and there is no set limit at which time you will have problems. The main problem encountered will be data coming into the computer faster than it can accept it, resulting in lost data. Hardware handshaking takes care of some of this, but sometimes the computer is so tied up with another process that it can't even do handshaking. With data coming in at speeds to 57,600 bps, the computer must be very attentive to the serial port. The following describes some things to watch for and some possible fixes: Upload/Download Transmission Problems If your software protocol (Y-Modem, Kermit, etc.) shows lots of blocks being resent and Receive Error (RE) is never displayed on the modem, you are probably losing data between the modem and computer not the phone lines. Since the files you are transferring are probably pre- compressed, it will be best to set your serial port close to the actual line speed. We recommend 19,200 bps for most 9600 and 14,400 bps connections. Faster UART Chip for PC Compatibles and External Modems Most older and some newer PCs use the 16450 UART chip for serial communications. This chip was not designed for today's high speeds and has a limited memory capacity which simply cannot keep up with faster PCs and transmission speeds. You can replace this chip with the 16550 UART (which has a 16-byte buffer more suitable for high-speed transfer) if your existing chip is socketed. In some cases, it may be easier for you to add a new serial card to your system. This may solve most lost character situations. To find out which UART chip your system uses, consult your PC manual or download and run the diagnostic program IS1655.ZIP from the PC file area on the Supra BBS. Flow Control & Hardware Handshaking Cables This is a detail we can't emphasize enough. Using a cable with "RTS/CTS Hardware Handshaking" is critical if you plan to communicate at high speeds. With error correction and data compression, the SupraFAXModem V.32bis can often send information to the computer faster than it can accept it. When this happens, the computer will tell the modem to slow down. Similarly, if a packet is not sent correctly to the SupraFAXModem and needs to be resent, the modem needs to be able to tell the computer to wait. This is called "flow control" and helps to prevent data from being lost because the computer or modem was busy. We recommend you enable flow control through hardware (with a hardware handshaking cable) rather than software (using the XON and XOFF characters) because the results are generally faster and more reliable. If you are using X, Y or ZModem to transfer data you must use hardware flow control. See Chapter 2 in the Reference Manual for more information. One clue to a flow control-related problem will be if you are able to make a connection but nothing else happens, or if you cannot start the download/upload process. If this happens, your modem is probably configured for flow control but your cable or software does not support it. If you are using a Macintosh computer, it is even more likely that your cable doesn't support hardware handshaking. Be careful to specify this when you order a new cable. If you can't find them elsewhere, our sales dept. has them for $19.95. Multitasking Multitasking computers are great in that they allow you to do many different things while other operations take place in the background. Although you don't see them in progress, those background operations can be complex and can sometimes demand too much of your computer's attention for it to do high-speed communications. Transmissions will be more reliable in a single-user situation with as few applications as possible in use. We've identified some specifics which can interfere with high-speed communications, depending on your platform. This is by no means a complete list: call the Supra BBS for current details. Amiga: Workbench 2.x allows transmission rates about 100% faster than Workbench 1.3 which limits you to 9600 bps reliably. Background tasks, graphics modes, SCSI interfaces and hard drives all can have an impact on the actual transmission rate. With WB 2.x, you should be able to achieve reliable serial port speeds between 9600 and 19,200 bps depending on CPU model and speed. Macintosh: AppleTalk/AppleShare (including printing) activity can lower the transmission rate because it has a higher priority than other serial communications. Some inits may also cause problems. PC's & Compatibles: Please see "Faster UART Chip" above. TSR (terminate stay-resident) programs can also slow the transmission rate. Windows: Windows 3.0 will often have problems at speeds higher than 19,200 bps. We are presently evaluating the performance of Windows 3.1, which is supposed to correctly support up to 38,400 bps with 16550 UART or 486 CPU. All Platforms - Displays: If you are downloading text that is displayed on your screen as it is received, you may have problems with your computer's display keeping up with the speed of the incoming data. One way to get better performance is to change your display to a lower number of colors, or monochrome, so it is more efficient. Whenever possible, use a file transfer protocol because they do not display all of the file data to the screen. All Platforms - Processor Speed: Another general rule is the faster processor that your machine has, the better it will be for high-speed transfers. A 68040 or 386/486 machine will probably do better than a 68000 or 80286. Software Configuration / Compatibility For the most up-to-date information on specific software settings, you'll want to call the Supra BBS. The final pages of this bulletin list the programs and settings we've been able to verify, as of this printing, for both fax and data software. Class 2 Fax Problems If you are having occasional problems with Class 2 fax transmissions, you may simply need to enable software flow control (AT &K4) with your fax software. Please see the software configuration section for specifics. Also, some software better supports Class 1 than Class 2, so you may want to try switching for best results. Contacting Supra Corporation For the most up-to-date information on our products and quickest help, we recommend calling our BBS. It contains the latest version of this bulletin along with other useful files. You may also find that other users have already asked your specific question and the answer's already been posted. It's a free service that only costs a phone call and is available 24 hours a day! Most questions should be answered within one work day of posting. You can also contact Supra via CompuServe, GEnie, BIX, America Online and AppleLink. Supra Corporation 7101 Supra Drive SW, Albany, OR 97321 General (503) 967-2400 / Sales (503) 967-2410 / Fax (503) 967-2401 Supra Tech Support (503) 967-2440 8:00am - 5:00pm PST, M-F Supra BBS: (503) 967-2444 24 Hours CompuServe 76004,565 BIX SupraCorp America Online SupraCorp2 GEnie SupraTech AppleLink D2456 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ To sign up for GEnie service call (with modem) (800) 638-8369. Upon connection type HHH and hit <return>. Wait for the U#= prompt and type XTX99436,GEnie and hit <return>. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ To sign up for CompuServe service call (with phone) (800) 848-8199. Ask for operator #198. You will be promptly sent a $15.00 free membership kit. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Atari Explorer Online Magazine is a bi-weekly publication covering the Atari computer community. Material published in this edition may be reprinted in non-commercial publications unless otherwise noted at the top of the article. Opinions presented herein are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the staff. Atari Explorer Online Magazine is Copyright (c)1992, Atari Computer Corporation. Z*Net and the Z*Net Newswire are copyright(c)1992, Z*Net News Service/Ron Kovacs. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Atari Explorer Online Magazine "The Official Atari Online Journal" Copyright (c)1992, Atari Computer Corporation ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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