ST Report: 25-Apr-97 #1317From: Bruce D. Nelson (aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 05/11/97-09:16:04 AM Z
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From: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson) Subject: ST Report: 25-Apr-97 #1317 Date: Sun May 11 09:16:04 1997 Silicon Times Report "The Original Independent OnLine Magazine" (Since 1987) April 25, 1997 No.1317 Silicon Times Report International OnLine Magazine Post Office Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32205-6155 R.F. Mariano, Editor STR Publishing, Inc. Voice: 1-904-292-9222 10am-5pm EST FAX: 904-268-2237 24hrs STReport WebSite http://www.streport.com STR Publishing's FTP Support Server 10gb - Back Issues - Patches - Support Files (Continually Under Construction) ftp.streport.com Anonymous Login ok - Use your Email Address as a Password Have you tried Microsoft's Powerful and Easy to Use Internet Explorer? Internet Explorer is STReport's Official Internet Web Browser. STReport is prepared and published Using MS Office 97, Corel Office Perfect 7 & Adobe Acrobat Pro Featuring a Full Service Web Site http://www.streport.com Voted TOP TEN Ultimate WebSite Join STReport's Subscriber List receive STReport Via EMail through The Internet Toad Hall BBS 1-617-567-8642 04/25/97 STR 1317 Celebrating Our Tenth Anniversary 1987-97! - CPU Industry Report - E-Stamps Online - HP Buys Verifone - Frankie's Corner - Fraud on the Net - Shareware Listings - No AOL/CIS Merger? - STR Mailcall - 3Com cuts $$$ - UnAbashed Atariophile - People Talking - Classics & Gaming Feds Warn of 'AOL4FREE' Ruse Intel Readies 300MHz Chip Symantec, McAfee Going to Court STReport International OnLine Magazine Featuring Weekly "Accurate UP-TO-DATE News and Information" Current Events, Original Articles, Tips, Rumors, and Information Hardware - Software - Corporate - R & D - Imports Adobe Acrobat Pro 3.0 Please obtain the latest issue from our Auto Subscription, Web Site or FTP Site. Enjoy the wonder and excitement of exchanging all types of useful information relative to all computer types, worldwide, through the use of the Internet. All computer enthusiasts, hobbyist or commercial, on all platforms and BBS systems are invited to participate. IMPORTANT NOTICE STReport, with its policy of not accepting any input relative to content from paid advertisers, has over the years developed the reputation of "saying it like it really is". When it comes to our editorials, product evaluations, reviews and over-views, we shall always keep our readers interests first and foremost. With the user in mind, STReport further pledges to maintain the reader confidence that has been developed over the years and to continue "living up to such". All we ask is that our readers make certain the manufacturers, publishers etc., know exactly where the information about their products appeared. In closing, we shall arduously endeavor to meet and further develop the high standards of straight forwardness our readers have come to expect in each and every issue. The Publisher, Staff & Editors 1987-1997 Florida Lotto - LottoMan v1.35 Results: 04/19/97: Three matches out of six numbers >From the Editor's Desk... This week's issue is running late. I know it. Its my fault for allowing some company to tie me for most of the afternoon. They were lovely people though, so believe me it was worth it. Check out this week's news boards as there is a great deal going on. I'm still evaluating Word Perfect vs Word 7 and so far, Word 7 is still on top. Primarily because the PDF generator doesn't like Word Perfect at all. <sigh> Yet. I must admit however, that this week's issue had certain articles come in that were in what appeared to be 40 col. Format. It took forever to re-format that thing. I thought forty column `putes were all in the grave yard. Changing all that was a real time killer. Ralph.... Of Special Note: http://www.streport.com ftp.streport.com STReport is now ready to offer much more in the way of serving the Networks, Online Services and Internet's vast, fast growing site list and userbase. We now have our very own WEB/FTP Site, do stop by and have a look see. Since We've received numerous requests to receive STReport from a wide variety of Internet addressees, we were compelled to put together an Internet distribution/mailing list for those who wished to receive STReport on a regular basis, the file is ZIPPED, then UUENCODED. Unfortunately, we've also received a number of opinions that the UUENCODING was a real pain to deal with. You'll be pleased to know you are able to download STReport directly from our very own FTP SERVER or WEB Site. While there, be sure to join our STR AutoMailer list which allows a choice of either ASCII or Acrobat PDF. STReport's managing editors DEDICATED TO SERVING YOU! Ralph F. Mariano, Publisher - Publisher, Editor Dana P. Jacobson, Editor, Current Affairs Section Editors PC Section Mac Section Shareware Listings R.F. Mariano Help Wanted Lloyd E. Pulley Classics & Gaming Kid's Computing Corner Dana P. Jacobson Frank Sereno STReport Staff Editors Michael R. Burkley Joseph Mirando Victor Mariano Vincent P. O'Hara Glenwood Drake Contributing Correspondents Jason Sereno Jeremy Sereno Daniel Stidham David H. Mann Angelo Marasco Donna Lines Brian Boucher Leonard Worzala Please submit ALL letters, rebuttals, articles, reviews, etc., via E-Mail w/attachment to: Internet email@example.com STR FTP ftp.streport.com WebSite http://www.streport.com STReport Headline News LATE BREAKING INDUSTRY-WIDE NEWS Weekly Happenings in the Computer World Compiled by: Dana P. Jacobson Clinton, Gore Join NetDay Characterizing it as the 21st century version of an old-fashioned barn raising, President Clinton and Vice President Al Gore joined yesterday's volunteer "NetDay" efforts to connect schools to the Internet and ponied up $11.8 million to help. Also, the president urged the Federal Communications Commission to give schools and libraries $2 billion in annual discounts for Internet service, notes Associated Press writer Sandra Sobieraj. The FCC is expected to vote on the discount May 6. In his weekly radio address, Clinton commented, "This can make all the difference for communities struggling to make sure their students are ready for the 21st century. Now more than ever we can't afford to let our children be priced out of cyberspace." Clinton and Gore used video and computer equipment to link from the Oval Office to NetDay activities around the country, as parents, teachers, corporate officials, communications workers and retirees ran high-capacity cable through classrooms to connect them to the global computer network. Notes AP, "Since the first NetDay last spring, which Clinton and Gore incorporated into their re-election campaign, about a quarter million volunteers have wired 50,000 classrooms." Clinton yesterday called the effort "a great example of how America works best when we all work together ... like an old-fashioned barn raising." In addition, Gore announced $11.8 million in technology literacy grants for classroom computer equipment and teacher training were being awarded to seven states: Alaska, Connecticut, Kansas, Nebraska, Nevada, South Dakota and Tennessee. Also sharing the Education Department funds were schools in the U.S. territories of Northern Mariana and American Samoa and schools administered by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. The department awarded $57 million to 14 other states earlier this year. The wire service quotes research from Market Data Retrieval as estimating 27,000 to 40,000 public schools -- about one-third to one-half of the national total -- use the Internet. Other surveys indicate that the connection reaches less than 10 percent of the classrooms, computer labs and libraries where students actually sit. As reported, Clinton made a campaign promise to help wire every American classroom and library to the Internet by 2000 and has included a request in this year's budget for an additional $2 billion in technology literacy grants over the next five years. President to Surf the Net As part of NetDay celebrations today, a computer terminal is being temporarily installed in President Clinton's Oval Office and even will venture into cyberspace. White House press secretary Mike McCurry told United Press International the president is "going to try to get computer literate." UPI notes Vice President Al Gore, whose cyber knowledge is extensive, plans to join the president in the Oval Office event and both will chat with schoolchildren around the country. The White House says Clinton already has a laptop computer with Internet capabilities in the Oval Office. Rebates Set in Screen Settlement Practically every computer maker, from IBM and Compaq to Apple Computer Inc., and 11 retail chains, including Tandy and CompUSA, have agreed to a settlement of a class-action lawsuit alleging buyers were misled about the size of computer monitors. The settlement of the suit -- filed in San Francisco Superior Court and covering purchases between May 1, 1991, and May 1, 1995 -- means major computer makers and retailers will offer rebates to literally millions of consumers. The Associated Press reports consumers taking advantage of the settlement can get a $13 cash rebate on new purchases of $250 or more. The rebates will be available between Sept. 8, 1997, and Sept. 8, 2000. And people who make new purchases between September 2000 and March 2001 can receive a $6 rebate. AP notes the complaint alleged the manufacturers and merchants confused consumers about the size of the screens by not setting a standard for measurements. "Monitor makers often advertised the diagonal size of the glass that covers a screen, the same way television screens are measured," AP comments, "but since a portion of the glass on a PC monitor is framed by plastic, the viewing area was smaller. The settlement requires a measurement of the monitor's viewable screen area from now on." Attorney Robert Green, who represented consumers, estimates some 45 million PC sales are covered in the lawsuit, but told the wire service that not that many buyers will qualify for the rebates because bulk purchases are excluded. He and other lawyers involved declined to estimate the settlement's value. For further information on the settlement or to receive a copy of rebate coupons, call 1-800-789-0311 or visit the Web site at http://www.computermonitorcases. com. Web Directories Hit Newspapers A Eugene, Oregon, company company called WebLink Express plans to publish a Web directory in both Parade and USA Weekend magazines in Sunday newspapers nationwide for 13 weeks beginning in May. A weekly online electronic publication called NetCetera notes that "given that the combined circulation of the two publications is nearly 90 million households (about 200 million people), the effort could reach millions of potential new users of the Internet." The newsletter reports the business model of the one-page directory is based on charging more than 300 site owners $4,000 to have their site listed in the guide, adding, "The print guide will be supplemented by an online site with easy access to the advertised sites using four-digit numbers rather than URLs." On the Internet, WebLink Express is reached at Web address http://www.weblinkexpress.com. Feds Warn of 'AOL4FREE' Ruse A strong warning has been issued by the U.S. Energy Department's Computer Incident Advisory Capability team about a new Trojan horse called "AOL4FREE." Interactive Week Online says the rogue program -- downloadable from various Internet sites and sometimes sent as an attached binary file in electronic mail -- is 993 bytes in length and will erase a PC hard drive if run. CIAC officials tell the publication that downloading the program will not cause harm -- as some reports have said -- but that running the application will. An advisory on CAIC's Web page (http://ciac.llnl.gov) says, "If you are e-mailed this file, or if you have downloaded it from an online service, do not attempt to run it. If the program was received as an attachment to an e-mail message, do not double click open it." Dial-Around Codes Alert Issued A consumer organization is warning telephone users to study closely the advertisements for those five-digit codes filling their mailboxes to make sure the strings attached don't unravel the savings. The so-called "dial-around" offers try to lure customers with promises of reduced long distance rates. The companies' marketing places a heavy emphasis on the calling code, a five digit number starting with "1-0," (i.e., 10XXX) which connects the consumer to a different long distance company for that call only, bypassing their primary long distance carrier, (the company that completes their 1+ calls). The calling method is not new, but it is being promoted to consumers in new and aggressive ways. "Consumers need to be careful shoppers when choosing their long distance carriers -- and they should be especially careful with the dial-around codes," says Angela Ledford, executive director of Tele-Consumer Hotline, an independent consumer education service founded by the Consumer Federation of America and the Telecommunications Research and Action Center (TRAC). "With some dial-around offers, the strings attached can unravel potential savings." Tele-Consumer Hotline warns that consumers need to consider carefully the special fees and requirements that can be associated with dial-around codes. VarTec Telecom, for example, advertises its "Dime Line" at a rate of ten cents per minute on all calls over three minutes but also charges a $5 monthly fee. On that plan, if you make only one call a month that lasts only 2.5 minutes, it will cost $5.30 -- not a quarter. Telecom USA, a wholly owned subsidiary of MCI, advertises 50 percent off AT&T's non-calling plan rates, but if you talk for at least 20 minutes. If the call is shorter than 20 minutes, the call is billed at rates that are one penny per minute less than AT&T's non-calling plan rates. The Tele-Consumer Hotline offers these tips for using dial-around codes: z Read the Fine Print. Beware of the monthly minimums, time requirements and fees. z Compare with Your Long Distance Company's Rates. If you are not on a calling plan with your long distance carrier, ask about one before choosing dial-around. If you are already on a calling plan, check those z rates against the dial-around rates. z Don't Use Dial-Around for Local Calls. Some local calls require you to dial the area code. If you have any doubt about whether a call is a toll call, call the operator. If you use a dial-around code on a local call, you will be billed at the toll rate, even though you could have dialed for free if you have flat-rate local service. z Be Careful of Using Dial-Around on Nights and Weekends. When you consider the surcharges and minimums, the per minute rate offered by dial-around codes may not be much, if any, cheaper than your regular long distance company if you are on a calling plan. California Passes Net Child Law State legislation to make it a crime to use the Internet to seduce or distribute harmful material to a child has been passed by the California Assembly and sent the state Senate for consideration. In Sacramento, GOP Assemblyman Steve Kuykendall told United Press International his bill would close a loophole that allows pedophiles to exploit minors on the Internet because the medium isn't covered by current law. UPI reports, "The bill would add e-mail or any other Internet source to categories identified under child protection law, but it stops short of addressing Internet censorship issues. Supporters cite more than a dozen U.S. cases of pedophiles seducing minors on-line, including a 14-year-old Livermore girl who was raped by a Vacaville man. He met her at an online chat room." The measure is opposed on the Assembly floor by Public Safety Committee Chairman Robert Hertzberg, a Democrat, who suggested "a more thoughtful approach," adding the bill needs work to deal with the complexity of a global communications tool that gives users anonymity. Symantec, McAfee Going to Court Escalating what observers call one of the software industry's bitterest rivalries, Symantec Corp. has sued McAfee Associates Inc., alleging copyright infringement. Reporting this morning in The Wall Street Journal, writer Don Clark notes the suit, filed in federal court in San Jose, California, alleges McAfee illegally copied Symantec software that allows PC users to save their data when their machine crashes. "The complaint," says Clark, "asks for an injunction to stop McAfee from selling a program called PC Medic, and seeks damages that include all of McAfee's profits from the product. McAfee said it was studying Symantec's complaint and had no comment." Clark notes Symantec, based in Cupertino, California, in September introduced a crash-recovery program called CrashGuard that it incorporates in products called PC Handyman and Norton Utilities. The company estimates it has sold 500,000 copies of products incorporating CrashGuard since then. McAfee, based in nearby Santa Clara, began offering crash-recovery capability with PC Medic in March. Symantec says in its suit that major sections of the McAfee program had computer code containing instructions identical to the Symantec product, and the company said the copying was verified by an independent consulting firm. "Most software-copyright battles are far from clear-cut," Clark comments. "In some cases, juries have concluded that the products of companies accused of infringement didn't meet a test of being 'substantially similar' to rival programs. In other cases, courts ruled that there are limited number of ways for programmers to accomplish certain functions, so similarities are permissible." Symantec suit also accuses McAfee of copyright infringement for distributing PC Medic through its Web site. Because of this, San Francisco copyright attorney Ronald Laurie told the paper the case may test whether courts will view electronic distribution of copyrighted software as a potential infringement. Apple MessagePad Sales Brisk Initial sales of Apple Computer Inc.'s newest mobile computer, the MessagePad 2000, have been brisk since the product was launched a month ago. Reporting from Apple's Cupertino, California, headquarters, the Reuter News Service quotes Vice President Sandy Bennett of the Newton Systems Group as saying, "The sales we have achieved in our first 30 days and customer response validate our claim that the MessagePad 2000 is a compelling business machine." Reuters notes the MessagePad 2000 is a member of the line of handheld Newton computers. Some of its features include e-mail, fax and Internet access, and it weighs only 1.4 pounds. Intel Readies 300MHz Chip Intel Corp. will launch a 300MHz microprocessor early next month, reports Computer Reseller News Online (www.crn.com). Intel plans to roll out its first Pentium II microprocessors with internal clock speeds of 233MHz, 266MHz and 300MHz on May 7, says the webzine, which adds that pricing of the fastest chip has been set at $1,980. A November price cut will bring the chip's cost down to $1,870. Computer Reseller News Online states that "Intel plans to position Pentium II so that over time it will be considered the best chip for use in desktop machines -- a kind of super-successor to today's mass market Pentium chips." Intel's other high-end chip, the Pentium Pro, will continue to be used in powerful workstations and servers, eventually narrowing its market to high-end servers. First DVD-RAM Drive Set to Ship Hitachi America, Ltd. plans to begin shipping sample verisons of the GF-1000, the industry's first announced PC DVD-RAM drive, on June 20. The Brisbane, California, company notes that the new drive, which allows both the recording and playback of data, complies with the DVD-RAM format announced last week by the DVD Forum. DVD-RAM is a rewritable DVD format that offers a storage capacity of 5.2GB using both sides of a 5-inch disk. The technology offers full compatibility with other DVD formats. The Hitachi GF-1000 family consists of three members: the GF-1000, which has an ATAPI interface, and the GF-1050 and GF-1055, both of which have a SCSI interface. The GF-1000 and GF-1050 are internal drives while the GF-1055 is an external device. Internal versions of the sample units will be priced at $794, while the external models will sell for $953. Maxell Corporation of America, based in Fair Lawn, New Jersey, will offer DVD-RAM sample disks. "Hitachi was the first manufacturer to ship samples of single-speed DVD-ROM drives, in June 1996, and in March this year was the first to ship samples of a double-speed DVD-ROM drive," says Werner Glinka, director of marketing for Hitachi America's storage products group. "As the chair of the DVD-RAM Working Group of the DVD Consortium, we played a central role in the process of reaching agreement on a single format, and will now be the first supplier to ship drives implementing that standard. This represents a further strengthening of our lineup of DVD drive products." Companies Want to Offer E-Stamps At least two companies -- postage meter giant Pitney Bowes and tiny firm called E-Stamp -- wants to make it possible for you to log into a Web site, buy postage and then have any laser printer run it out on envelopes along with an address. Both are waiting for the U.S. Postal Service to authorize the plan, saying they could be up and running by the end of the year, says Associated Press writer Elizabeth Weise. "In the E-Stamp Corp. vision of the future, putting postage on a letter would be as easy a printing it out," Weise reports. "The Palo Alto, Calif.-based company has developed a small adaptor about half the size of a pack of cigarettes that plugs into a computer's printer port at one end and the printer at the other. Users will be able to go to the E-Stamp Web site and, using secret codes, buy postage with a credit card. The amount would then be downloaded onto their computer." AP says the E-Stamp software would integrate with the user's word processing and printer programs so that with a simple click on a menu, a bar code would be printed on the upper right hand corner of an envelope -- after giving the computer a secret number so that no one can "borrow" stamps from your PC. E-Stamp has also patented a two-window envelope, which would allow users to print a stamp directly on a letter itself. Fold it in thirds and the address shows through one window, the stamp through another. Adds AP, "With Pitney Bowes' solid hold on the mass-mailing market, E-Stamp plans on going after home office workers who don't need a postage meter, but also don't want to run to the post office for stamps. E-Stamp estimates the printer adaptor and software to run it would cost under $300." The Stamford, Connecticut-based Pitney Bowes Inc., which introduced postage meters in 1920, also is eying the online stamp market. Weise says that last year the firm introduced a product that lets customers use their own laser printers to produce the traditional postage meter strip. In addition, Pitney Bowes customers have been able to refill their postage meters by phone since 1979. "But," she adds, "moving from a proprietary computer network where users dial directly into a Pitney Bowes computer and selling postage over the Internet is a leap the company is still exploring." Pitney Bowes Vice President Mike Stecyk told the wire service, "When we do PC Metering, we will provide capability either over the public network like the Internet or a private network." Teens Value Computer Over TV? A new Gallup Organization survey conducted for the National Science Foundation suggests teenagers today are more likely to give up their televisions than their computers. The poll, also backed by USA Today and CNN, reports teenagers embrace technology much more readily than their parents and grandparents do, "not surprisingly," adds a statement from Washington, "since more than half the teens were under 10 the first time they used a computer." In addition, says the statement, "the kids feel they won't be able to make a good living without computer skills and an understanding of other technologies." Other findings in the poll that surveyed a random sampling of 744 teenagers across the country included: z Just two-thirds of the teens have computers at home. z An overwhelming 99 percent have used computers before. z While teens from lower income households are less likely to have computers or Internet access at home, they are just as confident as their more affluent counterparts about working on computers, and are just as eager to learn more about computers. Julia Moore, director of the NSF's Office of Legislative and Public Affairs, termed the survey results "a wake-up call to parents and educators," adding, "In fact, our kids could be teaching us." The survey also segmented respondents into five usage categories: 1. Techno-Whizzes, defined as "high-achievers in everything they do. ... most likely to be involved in after-school activities, have the highest educational aspirations after high school and are more likely to rate themselves as top students." This group last week they spent seven hours on their computers, about half of that on the Internet, the poll says. 2. Computer Specialists. The group spent less time at the computers (6.4 hours last week), but has "the highest level of confidence in their ability to do so," says the pollsters' statement. "In addition, they prefer spending time on computers to other forms of technology included in the poll, such as VCRs, boom boxes and other stereo equipment and calculators." 3. Moderates, who "do everything in moderation -- except talk on the telephone, listen to music and use the VCR." 4. The Wary, who "have extremely high educational aspirations, yet the lowest level of confidence in their ability to use computers (2.9 on a scale of 1-10)." Still, notes the poll, this group has almost as much access to home computers as the Techno-Whizzes (76 percent). 5. Low-Techies, who, with the exception of TV, "uses hardly any form of technology cited in the poll, from computers to VCRs to video games to answering machines." The poll says this group's access to computers and educational aspirations are the lowest. More Juice Found in PC Market Don't write off the first-time PC buyers market. A new survey by Computer Retail Week and The Verity Group suggests many non-computer owners are still just waiting for a bargain. In a statement from Manhasset, N.Y., pollsters say: z About one-third of the respondents from households without a computer said they had heard of full-featured PCs being introduced at prices around $1,000. z And 12 percent of those people said that they were more likely to purchase a computer if such a system were available. Roger Lanctot, editorial research director at Computer Retail Week, says the finding suggests more than just the fact that the first-time buyer market is not dead, adding, "Here's an indication that the market may well be stimulated by the availability of new, lower-cost systems." The poll, which surveyed an even number of men and women, found younger respondents and those in the 15,000 to $24,900 annual income range most likely to be more interested in buying a computer if a $1,000 PC were available. Said Lanctot, "Twelve percent of the 60 percent of U.S. households that do not currently own a personal computer represents more than six million potential customers that are test-driving the hard drives of $999 PCs in the coming weeks." Other findings: z More than one-quarter of the respondents in the 26- to 35-year-old age group said they would be more likely to purchase a PC if it were available for less than $1,000, and 28.6 percent of the respondents who were under 25 years old indicated a similar inclination. z Only 7.3 percent of respondents between the ages of 36 and 55 responded that they would be more likely to make such a purchase, as did 5.4 percent of respondents 56 years old or older. z Awareness of the availability of PCs for less than $1,000 was highest among younger people. z One-quarter of respondents in the $15,000 to $24,900 income category said they would be more likely to buy a computer now that $1,000 computers were available, while only 6.1 percent of households earning less than $15,000 annually showed a similar interest. z About 14 percent of households with between $25,000 and $49,900 in annual income, and 18.8 percent of households earning $50,000 annually or more, indicated a greater interest in such a purchase. z Awareness of PCs for less than $1,000 was greater in higher-income households than in lower-income households. A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N LEXMARK OPTRA C COLOR LASER PRINTER For a limited time only; If you wish to have a FREE sample printout sent to you that demonstrates LEXMARK Optra C SUPERIOR QUALITY 600 dpi Laser Color Output, please send a Self Addressed Stamped Envelope [SASE] (business sized envelope please) to: STReport's LEXMARK Printout Offer P.O. Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32205-6155 Folks, the LEXMARK Optra C has to be the very best yet in its price range. It is far superior to anything we've seen or used as of yet. It is said that ONE Picture is worth a thousand words. The out put from the Lexmark Optra C is worth ten thousand words! Send for the free sample now. (For a sample that's suitable for framing, see below) Guaranteed. you will be amazed at the superb quality. (Please.. allow at least a two week turn- around). If you would like a sample printout that's suitable for framing. Yes that's right! Suitable for Framing. Order this package. It'll be on special stock and be of superb quality. We obtained a mint copy of a 1927 COLOR ENGRAVER'S YEAR BOOK. Our Scanner is doing "double duty"! The results will absolutely blow you away. If you want this high quality sample package please include a check or money order in the amount of $6.95 (Costs only) Please, make checks or money orders payable to; Ralph Mariano. Be sure to include your full return address and telephone number . The sample will be sent to you protected, not folded in a 9x12 envelope. Don't hesitate.. you will not be disappointed. This "stuff" is gorgeous! A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N Shareware Treasure Chest STR Feature "The Latest & Greatest" Shareware Treasure Chest By Lloyd E. Pulley firstname.lastname@example.org Name/Version Release Date Size Price Stats 97 1.0 4/23/97 380kb Freeware Disk utility collects numerous disk statistics for Win95 including file types, file ages, age distribution, and file size distribution. Works over multiple disk drives. All graphs are 3D. Home Page Site - http://www.contactplus.com/index.htm Name/Version Release Date Size Price NoteBook 32-bit 4.1 4/19/97 .60mb Shareware $15 There is one and only one point to this program - to replace Notepad. Notebook is not a word processor. It's sole purpose is to view and edit text files. Notebook does have 6 major features (and several minor ones) which make up for Notepad's inadequacies: 1. It will open very large files, and allow you to edit them. People have successfully opened, edited, and saved files in excess of 5 megabytes! 2. It features complete font control - you can set the font name, style, size, and color, and your settings will be saved when you exit the program. It will look better on your screen, and do a much better job of printing. 3. Notebook has a taskbar which keeps track of your cursor position, and a toolbar, complete with help balloons. The taskbar, toolbar, and the help balloons can each be turned on and off at will. 4. Notebook features Drag and Drop text editing. If you want to move a block of text, just use the mouse to select it, and drag it to where you want it. 5. Notebook supports overtype mode. While the default editing mode is insert, hitting the INSERT key on your keyboard will change that to overtype. 6. Notebook can both print and save to a file selected text only, if so desired. Home Page Site - http://members.aol.com/ron2222/note95.htm Name/Version Release Date Size Price Internet-Dial 1.6 4/18/97 1,200kb Shareware $22.00 Intelligently configures your Windows 95 PC for Internet Access. Automatically installs, Dial-Up networking, TCP/IP & Dial-up adapter Edit, create or delete Windows95 Dial-up profiles. Built in scripting utility, edit, create & review custom login scripts. Set Profile specific usernames, passwords, tel numbers, scripts etc. Connect, disconnect, show terminal, modem status, line status etc. Maintain many unique profiles for different ISP's with unique DNS,Ip etc. Pre-define upto 8 Internet apps plus parameters to launch on connection. Minimize to the sys tray & connect, login & launch an app from a PopUp menu. Home Page Site - http://www.legend.co.uk/~andrew/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price Plugsy 32-bit 1.00.04e 4/19/97 .62mb Shareware $29.95 Digigami Plugsy is the only solution for eliminating conflicts among Netscape Navigator plug-ins. Easy to install and simple to use, Plugsy gives power users and system administrators the unique ability to configure Netscape Navigator's plug-in configuration. You'll be able to mix and match third-party multimedia players as well as Navigator's own built-in players by individually assigning each MIME type (multimedia format) to either a plug-in or helper application. Note: Only good with Netscape Navigator. Home Page Site - http://www.digigami.com/plugsy/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price April '97 definition update for Mcafee 4/19/97 1.03mb Freeware This file is a complete replacement for any previous definitions set for all of the Mcafee products. Usable by: WebScan (the antivirus helper app),NetShield, VShield, and VirusScan for DOS,, or Windows (3.x, 95, or NT) Home Page Site - http://www.mcafee.com/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price Microsoft Netshow 32-bit Player 2.0 beta 2 4/19/97 1.40mb Freeware NetShow is the easiest, most cost-effective way to stream audio, illustrated audio, and video across intranets and the Internet. Normally, a user has to wait for an entire file to be transferred before using networked multimedia content. Streaming lets users see or hear the information as it arrives, without having to wait. Unlike other streaming products, NetShow lets content providers generate compelling productions in which audio, graphics, video, URLs and script commands can be synchronized based on a timeline. Home Page Site - http://www.microsoft.com/netshow/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price MidiMaster 32-bit 7.0 Official Release 4/19/97 1.00mb Shareware $20 MidiMaster is a multimedia player for Windows 95 or Windows NT 4.0 that supports MID, RMI, AVI, QuickTime and WAV formats. It is not only a media player but also a media file organizer. It is specially designed for those who like a desktop media player which brings convenience whenever they play and manage their beloved media files. Users can either minimize MidiMaster to taskbar or shrink it to the TaskTray of Windows 95. MidiMaster also provides library functions for managing or categorizing media files. It has many extensive functions which make media files playing extremely simple and controllable. There are many more functions available to make your life of playing media files easier. Home Page Site - http://www.cs.ust.hk/~paul/mm/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price The Realm 4/19/97 13.00mb Demo The Realm is an ever-evolving online world of monsters, magic, and medieval society. Discover the future of interactive adventure games, and explore a new world of quests and companionship with thousands of players from across the world. You play a customized character who explores different towns, forests, and dungeons while defeating wolves, ogres, and demons. You have to make friends, battle beasts and earn money to buy armor, weapons, food, and magic spells. Home Page Site - http://www.realmserver.com/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price My Wedding Companion - Wedding Planner 2.0 4/19/97 4.0mb Demo MWC is commited to ensuring that you succeed in planning your wedding with this program. Your wedding day will be the most memorable day of your life. Do not let the wedding planning details interfere with your feelings of joy, excitement and anticipation! Make sure the memories are good ones by using My Wedding Companion. Think of this easy-to-use software package as "aspirin" for your wedding planning headaches. Home Page Site - http://users.southeast.net/~fivestar/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price MusiFind Pro 1.4a 4/17/97 728kb Shareware $5.00 The ultimate database for your music collection, whether its on vinyl, cassette, compact disc, or other media! It will help you get organized and find your music fast! Now with several easy-to-use wizards, and label creation for CDs (jewel cases) and cassettes (J-labels). Written by a DJ with over 15 years experience - both in the booth, and in software creation. Home Page Site - http://www.dlcwest.com/~sorev/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price Business Card Creator for Word 2.0 4/19/97 224kb Shareware $10.00 It has never been so easy to make great looking, professional business cards. Uses ten card stock. Easy to use -- almost no effort required for a great looking output. Easy to use and effective. Fast & Simple; Yields Great Looking Results. Works with all 10 Card Stock including the Avery Brand. Imagine Printing Your Own Business Cards in Seconds! For Word 97! Home Page Site - http://www.execpc.com/~amfsoft/index.html Name/Version Release Date Size Price Polyview 32-bit 2.90 beta 3 4/20/97 1.40mb Shareware $20 PolyView is a BMP, GIF, JPEG, photo-cd, PNG, and TIFF graphics viewer, file conversion, and printing utility for Windows NT and Windows 95. PolyView features fast image rendering, panning, and zooming that is optimized for Windows 95 and Windows NT. PolyView is a 32 bit application that uses multithreading to enhance usability and allow time consuming operations, such as image file reading and writing, to be performed in parallel with user interface operations. PolyView's multithreaded nature also allows the reading and writing of multiple image files at the same time. With its image appearance manipulation, copy and paste facilities, and DDE execution capabilities, PolyView is an excellent companion to your favorite Web browser. Home Page Site - http://www.netins.net/showcase/polybytes/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price Snadboy's Revelation 32-bit 1.1 4/20/97 1.20mb Freeware Windows 95 is great at remembering many of your passwords, e.g. the password of your dial-in ISP. Unfortunately, this is also a problem - since you seldom enter the passsword it tends to be forgotten. What are you to do when you need to know one of the saved passwords? The password is staring right at you, but is hiding behind a row of asterisks. SnadBoy's Revelation allows you to see over that wall in order to reclaim your password. Home Page Site - http://www.snadboy.com/revelation.shtml Name/Version Release Date Size Price RAS+ 95 Beta 4 (Build 136) 4/19/97 1.0mb Shareware $29.95 Adds automatic redialing, billing, automatic app-launching, multiple- phone number and provider dialing, and MORE to your standard Windows Dial- up Networking. Home Page Site - http://www.lambsoftware.com/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price Scripture Reminder 1.0 4/19/97 180kb Freeware Simple program for Christian Win95 users that sits in your startup folder and presents you with a random scripture each time you start Windows. Comes with scriptures in a file that can easily be added to. Home Page Site - http://homepages.enterprise.net/crimperman/christian/index.html Name/Version Release Date Size Price GolfHand 1.0 4/07/97 4,852kb Shareware 16.00 A complete golf statistics and handicap generation program. It includes many inquiry, reporting and management features so users can quickly and accurately determine their golf handicap, see how their complete game is going, their driving statistics, their putting statisitcs. Users can look at their stats for individual golf courses or all the golf courses that they may play for the season. Can keep backups of the database for safe keeping or to transfer to other machines. Home Page Site - http://www.stratec.ca/GolfHand/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price Head Hunter 2.01 4/20/97 5.0mb Shareware $50.00 Candidate tracking application for Technical Recruiters or Human Resource departments. Home Page Site - http://www.pcisys.net/~jason/headhunter.html Name/Version Release Date Size Price DL- The Dive Log 1.5 4/11/97 1,972kb Shareware 30.00 The Dive Log is designed with the regular Scuba Diver in mind. DL is extremely easy to use with most options right up front--no hard to use options or setup.DL includes support for multiple divers, starting your log at any number, photos, printer output, html output, textfile output, and many more options. Home Page Site - http://www.pond.net/~bsackett/dl/index.shtml Name/Version Release Date Size Price SubSpace 1.24 4/20/97 3.0mb Demo A truly interactive game that is a cross between Super Astroids and Super Defender. The best part of Subspace is that you play the game in real time with not 30-40 players, but, more like 50-70 players in each of 4 Public zones and One league zone. Home Page Site - http://www.vie.com/subspace/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price VolleyStat 2.0.4 4/16/97 4.8mg Demo The fastest, and easiest stat program ever. Enter all of your Teams and Players and you will be ready to go. Just start up a game and choose the starting line-up for both teams. It takes only two keystrokes to enter each stat. It also has a Report Wizard which, after a serious of questions will produce a report that will have answered all of your questions. This Demo version is full featured but does delete all of the matches that were entered on exit of the program. Home Page Site - http://erlenbaugh.com/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price Dart Trainer 1.5 3/27/97 1,128kb Freeware A dart training aid. The main purposes of the program are to stimulate training at home and to give some "interesting" statistics so one can compare with previous sets played. Home Page Site - http://home2.swipnet.se/~w-26087/DTeng.htm Name/Version Release Date Size Price Search 4 32-bit 2.0 4/21/97 .14mb Freeware Search 4 runs in your System Tray, It serves as a "quick-launch" to four of the most powerful Search Engines on the web (Alta Vista, Lycos, WebCrawler, or Yahoo!) in the form of a pop-up menu.In addition to simply linking you to powerful seach engines, Search4 also allows you to specify a word, group of words, or phrase to search for - before your browser is even running. Simply click "Search" and it queries all four search engines and returns the results from those queries together, in the form of four framed windows in your browser (Supports Netscape and Internet Explorer) Home Page Site - http://www.intermania.com/search4/index.html Name/Version Release Date Size Price Surfin Shield Xtra 32-bit 2.0 4/23/97 .80mb Shareware $49 SurfinShield Xtra 2.0 protects your desktop from both ActiveX and Java Internet attacks. Xtra runs on the desktop, monitors both Java and ActiveX activities, prevents suspicious Java and ActiveX applets from loading, and kills undesired applets before they can damage your computer resources. Home Page Site - http://www.finjan.com/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price EoEdit 32-bit .74 4/23/97 .03mb Shareware $5 EoEdit is a stripped-down text editor with the programmer in mind. It is a simple, fast text editor. Features include: *Font Style, Size, Color and Background Color Selection *Multiple Document Interface so you can work on several files at once without having to open more than one instance of the program and more. Home Page Site - http://vtg.org/bsmith/eosoft/software/EoEdit.html Name/Version Release Date Size Price Cookie Pal 32-bit 1.0a 4/23/97 .18mb Shareware $15 Cookie Pal is a complete internet cookie management system for Windows 95 and Windows NT 4.0. It lets you automatically accept and reject internet cookies from all or user specified web sites, without having to click on the web browser's annoying "Cookie Alert" messages all the time. Cookie Pal works with Internet Explorer 3.0 or later and Netscape Navigator 3.0 or later as well as Compuserve WinCIM 3.01 to give you complete and transparent control over the cookies which are accepted by and stored on your system. You can also view and delete existing cookies on your system. Home Page Site - http://www.kburra.com/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price My Yahoo News Ticker 1.6 Build 1601 4/23/97 .30mb Freeware A new program that delivers news, sports, stocks, weather etc to your desktop. It resides directly on your Windows 95 or Windows NT 4.0 task bar and works with existing applications, including screen savers. It uses the preferences you've established in your MyYahoo! account to do this. Home Page Site - http://www.netcontrols.com/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price Norton Anti-Virus Update 95.0B 4/23/97 3,700kb Freeware Updates your copy of Norton Anti-virus 95 to the Newest Version of 95.0B which adds FAT-32 Support and Support to the latest virus definitions Apply only to copies that have your NAVW32.exe is dated earlier than June 1,1996. Failure to Use this update will cause unexpected detections of non-existant viruses. Utilities 95 Patch 2.0 4/23/97 1,382kb Freeware NU95 2.0 Update. Norton Anti-Virus Montly Update 4/23/97 1.2mb Freeware Definition Update for Norton Antivirus Home Page Site - http://www.symantec.com/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price McAfee Virus Scan Monthly Update April 4/22/97 1,081kb Freeware This is the April update for Mcafee VirusScan version 3.0. Note: This will not work with earlier versions of VirusScan. Home Page Site - http://www.mcafee.com/down/dat.html Name/Version Release Date Size Price GremlinSoft Organizer 97 1.1 4/23/97 188kb Shareware $7.00 A Personal Information Manager and Notes Organizer. It allows you to organize notes into groups and automatically saves all text that is copied to clipboard into a special 'Clipboard' group. This means that you can add new note to it by simply selecting text and copying it to clipboard. It can edit notes as well (in fact, each note can be up to 4MB each). It also has a Tray Icon which allows you to copy favorite notes to clipboard with just a mouse-click. Home Page Site - http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Lakes/4146/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price LaserUp! Simple Calendar 2.0 4/21/97 323kb Shareware $12.50 Really useful calendar, log, and diary program. It allows you more versatile printing than the Windows 3.1 Calendar and some other nifty features including: Almost unlimited notes (32K) for every date, mark dates with any alphanumeric mark or code, record transactions by code and description for any date including hours, milage, income, and expenses, report transactions by code and/or description, search calendar by marks and text, print month at a time or week at a time, select fonts for display on button and for printing. Home Page Site - http://www.santhony.com/laserup/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price TreeSize Professional 1.0 beta 4 4/22/97 1,020kb Shareware $30.00 A powerful and flexible harddisk space manager for Windows 95 and Windows NT4. Find out which folders are the largest on your drives and recover Megabytes on it.Treesize Professional shows you the size, allocated and wasted space, the number of files, 3D bar and pie charts and much more information for several folders or drives you choose. The application has an intutive Explorer-like GUI and it is fast and multithreaded. You can print detailed reports or export the collected Data to Excel or an ASCII file. TreeSize Pro can be started from the context menu of every folder or drive. Home Page Site - http://www.informatik.uni- trier.de/CIP/marder/treesize.html Name/Version Release Date Size Price Parallel Port Monitor 1.0 4/22/97 120k Freeware Utility to spy on the parallel port. Provides a graphical view of the connector, indicating pin high/low status with different colors. Also has editable decimal, binary, and hexadecimal fields allowing individual registers to be viewed and modified. Home Page Site - http://www.okanagan.net/users/fred/ Name/Version Release Date Size Price CU-SeeMe 32-bit 3.0 beta 4//24/97 5.80mb Shareware $49 Enhanced CU-SeeMe is desktop videoconferencing software for use over the Internet. Currently, it's one of the most popular. This new version features: TCP/IP multicast support for LAN/WAN conferencing * New Phone Book with Graphical Contact Cards * Directory Services for locating other CU-SeeMe users * Whiteboard and Chat for multiuser collaboration during conferences * View up to 12 participant windows simultaneously * Caller ID for incoming connections * Motion JPEG (M-JPEG) video codec for high quality video over LANS and ISDN or higher connections Home Page Site - http://www.cuseeme.com/cu-seeme.html Check This page for the serial number you need - http://www.cuseeme.com/cu30-download-demo.html Name/Version Release Date Size Price Freeloader Gold 2.5 4/24/97 3.0mb Freeware FreeLoader downloads Web sites for you and saves them on your hard disk. FreeLoader's caching feature automatically converts downloaded Web page links from HTTP addresses to paths that work on your hard drive. You choose how much hard drive space you want to allocate to caching. Downloading goes on in the background, so you don't waste time waiting on the Web. Home Page Site - http://www.freeloader.com/ EDUPAGE STR Focus Keeping the users informed Edupage Contents Apple And Ellison Headed For A ShowdownProtonic Chips Never ForgetAirTouch ExpansionNSI Says FCC Should Assume Internet Registration FunctionsAT&T Loses Out To MCI And BT In South American DealMSN Mail Service Goes Down, Comes UpBarnstorming At NetDay Farmer On Computer Security Rules For Online Ads For ChildrenAOL, CompuServe Merger In DoubtThe Fight Over Apple's SoulComputers Promote "Community Of Learning"Intel Builds Cheaper Networking HubCourt Rejects CD-ROM- Based AppealExponential Misses The Mark AST Cuts 25% Of Its Worldwide Workforce Windows 97 Delay Meets With Big Yawn Overcoming Science Illiteracy HP Acquires VeriFoneMIT Ranks No. 1 In Wired College CompetitionWeb Ads Get More PushyPCs Go Postal3Com Cuts Network Hub Prices Symantec Says McAfee Copied Its PC- Crash Program Immigration & High-Tech Workers In Canada Fraud And The Net Intel Exec Predicts The Future Net Stats APPLE AND ELLISON HEADED FOR A SHOWDOWN Apple Computer has begun taking defensive measures against any possible hostile takeover bids by Oracle CEO Larry Ellison, who is considering turning the ailing computer maker into an NC factory. Apple has retained investment bankers Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Wall Street PR firm Abernathy McGregor Group, just in case Ellison decides to make his move. Meanwhile, Ellison has called on Apple's major institutional shareholders, trying to enlist their support for his takeover, and reportedly even offering a modest premium for each Apple share. Ellison's actions have put considerable pressure on Steve Jobs, a friend of Ellison's, who says, "He's my best buddy, but there are some things you don't know about your best buddy. I have made it clear to Gil (Amelio) that Gil doesn't have to be afraid that I'm trying to help someone else take over the company." (Wall Street Journal 18 Apr 97) PROTONIC CHIPS NEVER FORGET Researchers at the University of New Mexico and Sandia National Laboratories are investigating the use of protonic memory for making cheap forget-me-not computer chips. In 1995, they noticed during experiments on silicon wafers that protons deep within the wafers were responding to electrical signals on the surface. "Nobody had seen these moving protons before," says one scientist. Further research showed the protons can be precisely controlled with standard microcircuits -- and are thus able to store data. Protonic chips won't need the fancy processing used in "flash" and other so-called nonvolatile memory chips, and can operate at very low power levels, thus prolonging battery life in laptops. Protonic chips currently are being tested at Texas Instruments. (Business Week 21 Apr 97) AIRTOUCH EXPANSION If it can survive an effort in Washington to eliminate a tax break it had expected to receive, AirTouch Communications in San Francisco will buy the domestic mobile-phone business of U S West Communications for $2.3 billion, making the combined company the nation's 2nd-largest wireless phone company, smaller only than AT&T. (USA Today 18 Apr 97) NSI SAYS FCC SHOULD ASSUME INTERNET REGISTRATION FUNCTIONS Network Solutions Inc., which currently registers all top-level domain names under contract to the National Science Foundation, has suggested that the Federal Communications Commission temporarily assume that function until an international legal authority can be created to manage the system. The transition period would allow for public comment on the plan in order to incorporate any new processes or structures deemed necessary. The plan is in contrast to an earlier proposal announced by the Internet International Ad Hoc Commission to create seven new shard generic top-level domains to be administered by 28 new registrars. NSI's president says the IAHC plan risks Internet instability, creates "too much bureaucracy," and will contribute to increased domain name legal disputes. (BNA Daily Report for Executives 16 Apr 97) AT&T LOSES OUT TO MCI AND BT IN SOUTH AMERICAN DEAL Telefonica de Espana S.A. is pulling out of an alliance with AT&T in order to form a new alliance with MCI and British Telecom. MCI and BT are proceeding with a merger to form a company called Concert. (New York Times 19 Apr 97) MSN MAIL SERVICE GOES DOWN, COMES UP Microsoft Network's e-mail service, which is used by 2.5 MSN subscribers, was shut down for one-and-a-half days this week because of technical difficulties, but service has now been restored. The shutdown period was used to double MSN's capacity. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution 19 Apr 97) BARNSTORMING AT NETDAY In a radio broadcast, President Clinton and Vice President Gore praised "NetDay" activities that involve parents, teachers, business people and others in the work of wiring the nation's schools to enable access to the Internet. Clinton called NetDay "a great example of how America works best when we all work together -- it's like an old-fashioned barn raising." (Associated Press 19 Apr 97; see also http://www.netday.org ) FARMER ON COMPUTER SECURITY Internet security guru Dan Farmer, who attained notoriety for inventing SATAN software that specializes probing (hacking) computer systems for security holes, has a fatalistic outlook on human nature when it comes to secure systems: "By and large, people don't really care about security. To some degree, even I don't care. I take the standard precautions, but people still break into my machine. I mean, I don't even lock my door when I go out at night. If it takes an additional 5 percent of my time to run a really secure ship, I'd just as soon go see a movie or drink some more wine." (Scientific American Apr 97) RULES FOR ONLINE ADS FOR CHILDREN An advertising industry group called The Children's Advertising Review Unit has developed new voluntary guidelines on "responsible marketing to children" over the Internet, and has submitted them to the Federal Trade Commission. The FTC has already received a different set of guidelines from a group created by the Consumer Federation of America and the Center for Media Education. One difference between the two sets of guidelines is the positions they take on how children might be asked to furnish personal information about themselves or their families. The industry guidelines ask advertisers to make "reasonable efforts" to persuade children to get parental permission before supplying such information; the guidelines from the Consumer Federation/Media Education group take a harder line, and specify that no personal information should be solicited from children unless parental permission has been verified -- even if verification is difficult to obtain. (New York Times 21 Apr 97) AOL, COMPUSERVE MERGER IN DOUBT A proposal in Congress to close a perceived tax loophole known as the Morris Trust could threaten America Online's proposed $1.2-billion acquisition of CompuServe. "If the Ways and Means Committee had not come down the way they came down, this deal would have gone through," says an executive familiar with the talks. "But now the chances are slim to none." The Morris Trust provision allows companies to separate their businesses into two corporations and combine one of them with an acquirer on a tax-free basis. An AOL- CompuServe merger would have created an online giant with more than 10 million subscribers and over $2- billion in revenue. (Wall Street Journal 21 Apr 97) THE FIGHT OVER APPLE'S SOUL Stunned that Oracle chief executive Larry Ellison wants to buy Apple not for its Macintosh technology but as a builder of the stripped-down "network computers" (NCs) he wants to promote, some Apple loyalists are calling Ellison "a fool," "a villain" and a man who would "destroy Apple as a company." Ellison says his vision for Apple includes both Mac NCs and standard Macs: "I intend to use the Mac OS to build Mac NCs. Big Macs will continue. I am a Mac user. Have been since 1984. The only way to save the Mac is to increase unit volume. Big Macs -- like the one you and I have grown to love -- will continue. Networks of low-cost Mac NCs will be sold to schools and add to the overall Mac volume. At $500 for a Mac NC, more people will be able to afford a Mac. Big Macs plus little Mac NCs make for good business at Apple...and better schools." (San Jose Mercury News 22 Apr 97) COMPUTERS PROMOTE "COMMUNITY OF LEARNING" Seymour Papert, who created the Logo programming language for children, says that computers should be used to create a "community of learning" shared by students and teachers: "Socialization is not best done by segregating children into classrooms with kids of the same age. The computer is a medium in which what you make lends itself to be modified and shared. When kids get together on a project, there is abundant discussion; they show it to other kids, other kids want to see it, kids learn to share knowledge with other people much more than in the classroom." (Christian Science Monitor 21 Apr 97) INTEL BUILDS CHEAPER NETWORKING HUB Intel is marketing its 10/100 Stackable Hub for as little as $100 per network connection -- about half what competitors are charging. The new device moves data through a computer network at speeds ranging from 10 million to 100 million bits per second. Intel also reports it plans to integrate several older networking chips into a single chip that manufacturers could use to replace network-interface boards used in many PCs. Rival 3Com says it plans to cut its stackable-hub prices to compete with Intel, but scoffs at the network chip news, saying that few customers really want network chips installed on their motherboards, and that most who would, would prefer 3Com chips to Intel. "People assume that Intel is hard to beat in the chip game," says an analyst with Deutsche Morgan Grenfell. "But 3Com is hard to beat in the networking game." (Wall Street Journal 22 Apr 97) COURT REJECTS CD-ROM-BASED APPEAL A federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., last week refused to accept a legal appeal contained on a CD- OM, apparently the first time such technology has been used to file a case in any U.S. appellate court. While the judge praised the cyber-brief, he noted that the appeal raised questions of fairness, as the opposing side didn't have computers that could read the CD-ROM. The CD-ROM brief was put together by the firm of Fish & Richardson. (St. Petersburg Times 21 Apr 97) EXPONENTIAL MISSES THE MARK Exponential Technology says its first prototype chips, which were predicted to blaze at 533-MHz, are chugging along at rates below 500-MHz, and a company VP says Exponential won't hit its target speed until the second half of the year. The new chips are destined for Apple Computer's Macintosh and clones. Exponential says it will ship the slower chips this quarter, as planned, and continue working on the speed problem. (Wall Street Journal 21 Apr 97) AST CUTS 25% OF ITS WORLDWIDE WORKFORCE In the process of being bought by South Korea's Samsung Group and having to report first-quarter losses of $110 million, computer manufacturer AST Research is eliminating 1,000 jobs -- a quarter of its worldwide workforce -- because "our turnaround efforts require more aggressive actions than in the past." (New York Times 22 Apr 97) WINDOWS 97 DELAY MEETS WITH BIG YAWN Computer makers and consumers seem unfazed by Microsoft's announcement that Windows 97 will probably become Windows 98 instead. "We don't see it as a big demand issue at all," says a spokesman for Gateway 2000. "Obviously there's interest in it out there, but there's no rabid interest." For starters, some PC manufacturers say there are already too many Windows products on the market -- 3.1, 95 and NT -- which confuses consumers. "I don't think people are looking for Memphis (Window 97's code name). I think the financial markets are looking for Memphis," says a spokesman for Hewlett-Packard. And there's still plenty of room for growth in Windows 95 sales: a Forrester Research survey shows that 71% of corporations are still using Windows 3.1. Only 13% were using Windows 95, more than a year after its introduction. (Investor's Business Daily 21 Apr 97) OVERCOMING SCIENCE ILLITERACY Nobel-Prize winning physicist Leon Lederman says Americans lack the "scientific literacy" necessary to make daily decisions about medical care, diet and exercise, even product purchases, and thinks U.S. science and math instruction need to be overhauled. He wants all high school students to study computers, technology and the physical sciences for at least three years, and wants elementary school teachers retrained so that they understand science and math well enough to make it exciting for naturally curious youngsters. (Associated Press 21 Apr 97) HP ACQUIRES VERIFONE Hewlett-Packard will pay $1.18 billion to buy VeriFone Inc., the dominant supplier of machines that merchants use to validate credit-card transactions and the manufacturer of devices that process smart cards that store money and other information. The VeriFone acquisition will make HP a major force in electronic commerce. VeriFone has developed a device -- now being tested by Citibank -- that connects to a personal computer and allows a consumer to deposit or withdraw money on a smart card. (Washington Post 24 Apr 97) MIT RANKS NO. 1 IN WIRED COLLEGE COMPETITION The Massachusetts Institute of Technology came out on top in rankings that attempted to measure how well higher education institutions use the Internet. The survey, conducted by Yahoo! Internet Life magazine, queried 300 schools on how many courses were taught using the Internet for online homework, research and course home pages; the number of computers available to students and sufficiency of technical infrastructure; the number of nonacademic services such as chat rooms, newsgroups and space for student home pages provided by the institutions; and availability of online student resources. Numbers two and three on the Yahoo! list were Northwestern U. and Emerson College, and there were some surprises, such as Stanford University coming in at No. 84 and Harvard ranking No. 64. Kenneth Green, who conducts an annual Campus Computing Survey, says the survey's authors admit that it may not be entirely accurate: "They were very clear about what they set out to measure." Yahoo! also gave extra credit for "unique aspects of wired life on campus," such as the computer- interest floor in a dorm at University of Rochester and Ohio State University's chat room dedicated to underwater hockey. (Chronicle of Higher Education 24 Apr 97) WEB ADS GET MORE PUSHY Advertisers are moving toward more aggressive advertising methods for the Web, including "robot" programs designed to deliver animated sales pitches in chat rooms and full-screen ads that must be downloaded before users can see the content they've requested. The shift is driven in part by advertisers' concerns that click- through rates are dropping as Web surfers tune out the traditional banner-type ads. "It started happening last spring or summer," says the chief technology officer at SF Interactive, "when users started figuring out that the flashy banners were ads," rather than graphics designed as part of the site. The robot ads are the brainchild of Black Sun Interactive and are designed to pop up in response to information you divulge about yourself while "chatting" -- for instance, if you say, "My house is dirty," you might get a response like, "Hi, I'm Dusty -- would you like to know more about Black & Decker's Dustbuster?" Dusty is an avatar that looks like a dustbuster with big eyeballs and is programmed to zero in on words like "messy" or "clean." So far, only sites that use Black Sun's server can offer them. (Wall Street Journal 24 Apr 97) PCs GO POSTAL Postage meter behemoth Pitney Bowes and a tiny company called E-Stamp both have plans to sell postage on the Web, which can then be downloaded to a PC and printed out on envelopes via laser printer. The U.S. Postal Service is expected to authorize the plan by the end of the year. In E- Stamp's process, the stamp (which looks something like a bar code and includes information on the date and time the letter was stamped, as well as the zip code) would actually be printed out on a patented two-window envelope, allowing users to print the stamp on the letter itself. The stamp would show through one window, and the address through the other. "This means you don't have to run your envelope through the printer," says E-Stamp's president. (Miami Herald 24 Apr 97) 3COM CUTS NETWORK HUB PRICES 3Com has unveiled a new, inexpensive SuperStack II hub, and has lowered the price on its older Super Stack II Dual Speed hub. The move evens up the playing field between 3Com and Intel, which announced a cheaper networking hub earlier this week. (Investor's Business Daily 24 Apr 97) SYMANTEC SAYS MCAFEE COPIED ITS PC-CRASH PROGRAM Symantec has sued McAfee Associates Inc. for copyright infringement, alleging that McAfee illegally copied its CrashGuard computer crash recovery program. McAfee's similar product is called PC Medic. Both programs allow users to save their data before rebooting in the event of a frozen screen. In its suit, Symantec says that major sections of the McAfee product are identical to Symantec code. The success of Symantec's suit will depend on whether the court finds McAfee's PC Medic product to be "substantially similar" to CrashGuard, and whether there were other ways that McAfee could have chosen write the code, but didn't. (Wall Street Journal 24 Apr 97) IMMIGRATION & HIGH-TECH WORKERS IN CANADA The Commons immigration committee urged the federal government to reward or punish firms for their performance in providing high-tech training, and has endorsed plans to relax immigration barriers to speed the entry of experienced software experts. The report also suggested that high-tech industries are devoting insufficient resources to training and retraining workers, and not working closely enough with educational institutions to increase the supply of qualified Canadians. (Ottawa Citizen 24 Apr 97 C1) FRAUD AND THE NET A Deloitte & Touche report commissioned by the European Union says that cross-border fraud involving Internet abuse, banking and investment frauds, and smuggling is costing society $77 billion a year. The report suggests that perhaps the largest single threat comes from fraud through the Internet, because encryption technology remains vulnerable to sophisticated computer vandals. (Financial Times 24 Apr 97) INTEL EXEC PREDICTS THE FUTURE Intel chief operating officer Craig Barrett says that the technology now found in $50,000-75,000 workstations of the kind capable of producing images such as found in the film "Jurassic Park" will be available in $2,000 PCs in just a few years. He also predicts that PCs in the year 2011 will use a billion-transistor chip, compared with about 8 million in the most advanced chip today. (New York Times 23 Apr 97) NET STATS Did you know that Chrysler expects that 25% of its sales in 2001 will be conducted online (only 1.5% are online currently)? Or that the estimated number of new jobs worldwide created in 1996 by the Internet was 1.1 million? Or that the estimated total Internet advertising revenues in 1996 were $266.9 million? (Internet Index 16 Apr 97) http://www.openmarket.com/intindex/ . Edupage is written by John Gehl (email@example.com) & Suzanne Douglas (firstname.lastname@example.org). Voice: 404-371-1853, Fax: 404-371-8057. Technical support is provided by the Office of Information Technology, University of North Carolina. EDUPAGE is what you've just finished reading. To subscribe to Edupage: send a message to: email@example.com and in the body of the message type: subscribe edupage Marvin Minsky (assuming that your name is Marvin Minsky; if it's not, substitute your own name). ... To cancel, send a message to: firstname.lastname@example.org and in the body of the message type: unsubscribe edupage... Subscription problems: email@example.com. EDUCOM REVIEW is our bimonthly print magazine on learning, communications, and information technology. Subscriptions are $18 a year in the U.S.; send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. When you do, we'll ring a little bell, because we'll be so happy! Choice of bell is yours: a small dome with a button, like the one on the counter at the dry cleaners with the sign "Ring bell for service"; or a small hand bell; or a cathedral bell; or a door bell; or a chime; or a glockenspiel. Your choice. But ring it! EDUCOM UPDATE is our twice-a-month electronic summary of organizational news and events. To subscribe to the Update: send a message to: email@example.com and in the body of the message type: subscribe update John McCarthy (assuming that your name is John McCarthy; if it's not, substitute your own name). INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY CONFERENCE The CAUSE organization's annual conference on information technology in higher education is scheduled for the end of this month in New Orleans. The conference will bring together administrators, academicians and other managers of information resources. For full conference information check out <http://cause-www.colorado.edu > or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. ARCHIVES & TRANSLATIONS. 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Educom -- Transforming Education Through Information Technology Nowhere Else on Earth .Can you get all this: Disk Duplication CD-ROM Replication CD-R Replication Six Color Printing Six Color + UV Label Printing Product Design Consulting Market Channel Consulting Die Cutting Direct Market Packaging Tuck Tab Box Folding and Gluing Assembly Warehousing Fulfillment Electronic Pre-Press / Film and Proofs Bulk Mail Services .All Under One Roof! Vertical Development Corporation Software Manufacturing and Commercial Printing One Vertical Drive Canonsburg, PA 15317 Phone: 1-412-746-4247 Toll Free: 1-800-222-DISK Fax: 1-412-746-3566 Vertical's Internet Resources email@example.com http://www.vdev.com Now... with Offices in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Illinois and California! STReport's "Partners in Progress" Advertising Program The facts are in... STReport International Online Magazine reaches more users per week than any other weekly resource available today. Take full advantage of this spectacular reach. Explore the superb possibilities of advertising in STReport! Its very economical and smart business. In addition, STReport offers a strong window of opportunity to your company of reaching potential users on major online services and networks, the Internet, the WEB and more than 200,000 private BBS's worldwide. With a readership of better that 200,000 per week, this is truly an exceptional opportunity to maximize your company's recognition factor globally. (STReport is pronounced: "ES TEE Report") STR Publishing's Economical "Partners in Progress" Plans! "Partners in Progress" Program.. Call Today! STR Publishing, Inc. (STR, STReport, CPU Report); z maintains a commitment to utilizing the power of the Internet and Web to keep computer users, worldwide, both private and commercial, informed of new trends in equipment, upgrade reports and future planning. z offers highly informative Hardware and Software Reviews, Press Releases, hands-on stories, user experiences and show reports. z presents the NEWS about new hardware, new software and how-to publications within HOURS of its being made public. z is dedicated to keeping the users informed of what your company has to offer at incredibly, almost the moment its offered! Take full advantage of STReport's Exciting "Partners in Progress" Programs! MAXIMIZE your Company's Presence Worldwide. TODAY! Eighth Page - $75.00 Quarter Page - $150.00 per issue per issue Half Page - $300.00 per Full Page - $500.00 per issue issue Your company's color ad, as described/submitted by you or designed by us, will appear in STReport International Magazine. STReport is published and released weekly on Fridays Evenings. All sizes based on a full color, eight and a half by eleven inch page. Trade-outs and Special Arrangements are available. Email us at or, for quick action call us at: VOICE: 904-292-9222 10am/5pm est FAX: 904-268-2237 24hrs Or, write us at: STR Publishing, Inc. P.O. Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32205 STR Editor's Mail Call "...a place for the readers to be heard" Editor's MailBag Messages * NOT EDITED * for content Date: Fri, 25 Apr 1997 14:10:32 -0400To: "Ralph F. Mariano" <firstname.lastname@example.org>From: Laura Shook <email@example.com> Subject: Re: ThumbsPlus 3.0f, Network Install guide Mime-Version: 1.0 Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii" X-UIDL: 7d9d2d0f30be96897200582d388bcd14 Dear Ralph, For your information, I'm pleased to let you know... As reported by WebStar, Cerious Software, Inc. received more hits in the month of March from STReport's site than from any other site except search engines. We know that Ralph loves Microsoft, but we are pleased that he supports the little guys like us! Laura Shook Vice President Cerious Software, Inc.*** Thanks again for everything Ralph! Laura Editor. Laura!! Thak you ever so much for the report. It does my heart good to know such fine folks as Cerious Software are getting the action deserved for such a fine program as Thumbs Plus is. Thanks again for the encouraging information. Ralph. To: firstname.lastname@example.orgSubject: Your Control Freak ArticleX-UIDL: 8919ccfdd6ab69ee211f34ab919313c9 RalphWhere would we have been had the USA not intervened? The dark ages, and that includes you. The USA had no choice about entering W.W.II, Europe was crumbling and few nations were able to defend themselves against a thoroughly efficient and modern army, i.e. the Germans. Had they managed to conquer the entire continent and the U.K. then we would have seen various peace treaties being hastily signed by the Russians, Germans and Americans. We know these would have been short-lived, as all nations would seek to rebuild their military machine and go at it again. It's like saying where would the USA be if it hadn't been for the British, the Dutch, the Spanish the French and the native Indians who all fought bitterly over control of the new continent. The USA didn't exist until people sought to control it, so it was and so it always shall be. Remember, greed is paramount, Gulf War for oil while looking good at the same time. Out of interest, did you know that there was a secret plan drawn up during W.W.II for the USA to wrest control of Britain? The German Authorities are trying to create a case out of nothing, otherwise it would be Joe Public in the stand rather than Mr. Executive. Rgds Stuart Editor. Stuart. I canot disagree with you. In fact I believe we are in full agreement. The point I tried to make was that the German Nation, after all these years hasn't learned a thing. They're trying to act like they must lead everyone's lives for them. To try to indict and then set up trials with the trumped up, hairbag charges, the Bavarian DA or whatever its called "over there" ought to get a real job like ferreting out the remainder of the war criminals still on the German retirement rolls etc.. About that secret plan.. Care to elaborate?? I bet it would make for some great reading. Ralph. From: email@example.com (Juan Jose Casero) >Newsgroups: comp.os.linux.announce Subject: Linux Group For South Florida Some others, and I want to start a Linux User Group in the South Florida Area. I am new at this but I will try to get the ball rolling. Anyone who is interested can email me at the address below. Everyone is welcome of course but I have in mind a group comprised of members from Palm Beach, Broward, Dade, and Monroe counties. Cheers..... Juan Casero Department of Chemistry email: firstname.lastname@example.org Florida International Univ. __ _ Miami, Florida / / (_)__ __ ____ __ / /__/ / _ \/ // /\ \/ / . . . t h e c h o i c e o f a /____/_/_//_/\_,_/ /_/\_\ G N U g e n e r a t i o n . . . Kids Computing Corner Frank Sereno, Editor email@example.com The Kids' Computing Corner Computer news and software reviews from a parent's point of view In the News A New Software Give-Away As promised, The Kids' Computing Corner and the Silicon Times Report are sponsoring another software give-away promotion. Thanks to the fine people at MECC, I have one copy of Storybook Weaver Deluxe to give to a lucky reader. This excellent program encourages children to develop their writing skills and to express their creativity with words and pictures. It's recommended for children ages 6 and up, and the software comes on a hybrid format CD-ROM for both Windows and Macintosh operating systems. The rules are very simple. Send an entry by e-mail to Error! Bookmark not defined. or Error! Bookmark not defined. using the title Storybook. Please include your correct e-mail address. Entries must be received by 12:01am, Thursday May 8, 1997. The winner will be announced in the May 9th edition of the magazine. Winners of any contests held within the last 60 days are ineligible. Taxes, if any, are the responsibility of the winner. So flood my mailbox, gang! Strategy Challenges Collection II: In the Wild Windows and Mac hybrid Street Price: about $40 for ages 9 to adult Edmark P.O. Box 97021 Redmond, WA 98073-9721 1-(206)-556-8484 http://www.edmark.com Program Requirements IBM Macintosh OS: Windows 3.1, Windows 95 OS: System 7.0 CPU: 486DX/33 CPU: 68030/25 HD Space: 5 MB HD Space: N/A Memory: 8 MB Memory: 8 MB Graphics: 640 by 480 with 256 colors Graphics: 256 colors, 13" monitor CD-ROM: Double-speed CD-ROM: Double-speed Audio: 8-bit Windows compatible sound card Other: mouse review by Jason Sereno (firstname.lastname@example.org) Many programs teach your child information that they can memorize and use, but few programs make your children think and use logic to solve problems and plan out courses of action. Edmark designed Strategy Challenges 2 to teach children to use logic and problem-solving skills while playing games that appeal to them. Besides the difficulty levels changing, children will also see many characters and settings while playing the game. If your child wants to learn about wildlife, this program has text and video about different predators and their prey in QuickTime video. With the exciting information and the three great games in Strategy Challenges 2, this program should be a hit with your kids and you. Strategy Challenges 2 helps your kids to plan out their courses of action. It makes your child plan out their moves at least two or three steps in advance for them to be successful. The same strategy will not work every time, however, because the computer will change its game plan according to the moves that the player has made in past games. Each player that plays the game will save their name for future play. Not only does the computer save your name, it also saves the strategy it uses against you that was most successful. This makes every user's experience different in some way. There are three games in all and each has its own distinct characteristics. Tablut is a game in which you try to capture your opponent's pieces by trapping them between two of yours. Like all three of the games you can have your own defensive or offensive strategy. You can play against six different people depending on the skill level and type of strategy you have decided to use. The pieces can only move horizontally and vertically such as rooks in chess. There are two ways to win the game. You can take all of the opponent's pieces by capturing them or you can surround an opponent's king. The king holds the center of the board with four pieces protecting him when the game starts. If you become anxious and try to capture a piece with one that is surrounding the king, you may lose your spot and risk losing the game. There is only one king in the game. When playing against the computer, you have the king. For a match between two people, either player can choose to have it. This game is great for children to play because of its simplicity and high fun factor. The second game is Jungle Chess. This game is more complex and takes much more strategy and decision making to win. This game is basically the legendary board game Stratego but it substitutes the soldiers and tanks for wild animals and their place on the food chain. Movement is horizontally and vertically. The game consists of sixteen pieces in all, eight on each person's side. The pieces rank from one to eight with eight being the most powerful and one being the weakest. The way to capture a piece is to jump on it with an equal or greater number of animal. For instance, an elephant, which is eight, can jump on a cougar that has a lower number and then capture him. However, the only animal that can capture the elephant is a rat which is number one. Water holes can really effect the game play. Certain animals can jump over them and the mouse can swim in them. To win the game, you must use your pieces wisely, especially when it comes to using the rat. Surakarta is the third game. This is the most complicated game of the three. The object of the game is to slam your pieces into your opponents and destroy them. When a person has no pieces left, they lose. There is a track in which you will slide your pieces around. This track consists of an outer and inner ring. The rings intertwine to form a butterfly shape. It also resembles two figure-eight's lying perpendicular to each other. You will have to create a strategy that will let you destroy the other pieces while salvaging yours. This game is fun to play because of its originality. All three of the games possess their own special characteristics that make the games unique. Each game uses different sounds, music and video that add depth to the experience. Strategy Challenges 2 uses QuickTime movies to add neat animation to its games. Each setting is very different and each game sparks different ideas into your child's imagination. If your children wish to learn more about the animals in the program, they can view information about how the animals hunt, survive, and care for their offspring in the program. This accessory is very interesting and shows footage that is comparable to nature programs such as National Geographic. Your child can get information about the animals' hunting style and the ways that they catch their prey. When utilizing this accessory, the user can gather many ideas about different strategies. This is a great program. Strategy Challenges 2 is a great buy for parents who wish to give knowledge and important thinking skills to their children. Strategy is necessary in sports and many other aspects of life. This is a great buy for parents or adults who wish to improve on their children's' or their own strategy skills. COREL PHOTO-PAINTT 7 PLUS: THE OFFICIAL GUIDE (Second Edition) by David Huss Reviewed by Donna Lines This book is officially endorsed by Corelc Corporation as THE guide to Photo-PaintT 7. David Huss is a Photo-PaintT expert and author of two previous Photo-PaintT books. He also writes articles for Corel Magazine and Corel DRAW Journal and maintains an area called Paint Shop on the Web (www.Corelnet.com). As if that does not keep him busy enough, he also teaches Photo-PaintT at seminars worldwide. Although this book was written for Photo-PaintT 7 Plus, Photo-PaintT 7 users will be able to follow the tips and all but two of the hands-on workshops (lenses are exclusive to the Photo-PaintT 7 Plus). Incidentally, you can upgrade to the Plus version for $49. The Plus version includes the lenses mentioned in Chapter 9 and Corelc has recently added the Squizz 1.5 filter for warping effects. The author covers everything you will need to know -- how to configure the program, calibrating your equipment, tips on scanning, creating scripts, right down to creating professional results almost instantly. David also included a sixteen-page color insert which shows you the results you will get from many of the hands-on workshops. The examples give you an excellent idea of what a powerful program Photo-PaintT 7 really is. At the heart of the book are fifty (50) hands-on workshops. David begins by teaching the very basics of the program and then builds upon each lesson as the techniques become more difficult to master. Unlike some built-in program tutorials or the ones you find in user manuals, I could imagine a real-world use for the skills that each workshop was teaching. At times during the workshops I did have to resort to using Photo-Paint'sT help feature to locate a command or identify an icon. For the most part I was able to follow the instructions without any difficulty. The author has included extensive tips for Photo-PaintT 5 users and even provides hints for those more familiar with Adobec PhotoshopT. Throughout the book the author recommends resources to obtain additional information on specific techniques, tools or plug-in filters. David has included, in his words, `a short, opinionated list of books' that he has found useful with using Photo-PaintT or with photo-editing in general. Overall, I found David's writing style very easy to read and comprehend. He uses humor throughout the book to break up the monotony that usually accompanies learning a complex program. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced user looking to tap the newest features, you will benefit from this book. Published by: Corel PRESS, a division of Osborne (McGraw-Hill) Suggested retail: $34.99 (USA) Special Notice!! STR Infofile File format for Articles File Format for STReport All articles submitted to STReport for publication must be sent in the following format. Please use the format requested. Any files received that do not conform will not be used. The article must be in an importable word processor format for Word 6.0 and/or Word Perfect 7.. The margins are .05" left and 1.0" Monospaced fonts are not to be used. Please use proportional fonting only and at Twelve (12) points. z No Indenting on any paragraphs!! z No Indenting of any lines or "special gimmickery" z No underlining! z Columns shall be achieved through the use of tabs only. Or, columns in Word or Word Perfect format. Do NOT, under any circumstances, use the space bar. z Most of all.. PLEASE! No ASCII "ART"!! z There is no limits as to size, articles may be split into two if lengthy z Actual Artwork should be in GIF, PCX, JPG, TIF, BMP, WMF file formats z Artwork (pictures, graphs, charts, etc.)should be sent along with the article separately z Please use a single font only in an article. TTF New Times Roman 12pt. is preferred. (VERY Strong Hint) If there are any questions please use either E-Mail or call. On another note. the ASCII version of STReport is fast approaching the "end of the line" As the major Online Services move away from ASCII.. So shall STReport. All in the name of progress and improved readability. The amount of reader mail expressing a preference for our Adobe PDF enhanced issue is running approximately 15 to 1 over the ASCII edition. Besides, STReport will not be caught in the old, worn out "downward compatibility dodge" we must move forward. However, if the ASCII readership remains as high, rest assured. ASCII will stay. Right now, since STReport is offered on a number of closed major corporate Intranets as "required" Monday Morning reading.. Our ascii readers have nothing to worry themselves about. It looks like it is here to stay. Many grateful thanks in advance for your enthusiastic co-operation and input. Ralph F. Mariano, Editor email@example.com STReport International Online Magazine Classics & Gaming Section Editor Dana P. Jacobson firstname.lastname@example.org >From the Atari Editor's Desk "Saying it like it is!" I don't have a lot to say this week, but thankfully, our good friend Michael Burkley saved the day with his latest installment of his world- renown column: The Unabashed Atariophile! Busy, yes. Not only has work been a madhouse lately, but my wife and I have added to our "normal" stress by deciding that it's time to do some serious house-hunting. Most spare time has been devoted to checking out real estate papers and the like. We're also trying to make appointments to look at various houses - with our schedule, it's rough! But, it's time. I want to buy one before I'm too old to enjoy it! So, as I mentioned, I'll let Michael fill in the gaps this week. I'm continuing to work on the HTML commands compilation and hope to have that available in the coming weeks. Let's see what Michael has in store for us this week! Until next time... The Unabashed Atariophile by Michael R. Burkley April 24, 1997 Has it been two months now, or more, that I haven't written this article? Whatever the time, it's been too long! My saga of the horrible PC upgrade seems to have finally come to an end, temporarily, I assume. I've finally got my Windoz 95 machine up and running, reliably (but, see below). The technician at the computer store that has been "fixing" it doesn't really know why it's working now, but it is, and I guess that's good enough for me. Every card is in a different place, with a different address, the video card has been switched - twice, and the SCSI card once, Windoz 95 has been re-installed six or seven times (I had to order the CD version of the upgrade because my floppies developed problems and wouldn't work anymore!), the tech formatted one of my hard drives that he thought was empty (it had 2 gig of compressed files on it - but I had a backup!!!), and many other things were done. So now, when I turn the computer on, it doesn't crash on me! I still like my TT better. ~~~~~~~ This is written a week later than the above.... Well, it seems that I've miss-spoken when I said that my Windoz 95 machine was working reliably again. This time I'm not sure if it is problems with my machine or with my monitor. Sometimes when I turn on the computer the monitor stays blank, while other times the display pops right up. I took it back to the computer store and the dealer removed the card and replaced it with a new one...no display. He moved the card to a new slot...no display. He tried a different type of card...no display. Then he started really shifting things around! Finally, he switched the position of two banks of RAM and the display popped on. The interesting thing is that I was having this trouble before that second bank of RAM had been added to the computer the week before. So, he came to the conclusion that it was my monitor causing the trouble (huh? My monitor was at home at the time! But, once it didn't work for my TT after it didn't work for the clone--who knows!). Anyway, since then I haven't had any trouble, with the monitor, that is. He also sold me (inexpensively) a used 4X speed IDE CD ROM drive. My SCSI 2X drive had died while the computer was in his shop (let me see, that makes a 2 gig drive, a SCSI Card, and a CD ROM drive that died while under his care--geesh!). I was looking forward to the increased speed of the 4X CD over the 2X, at least. But alas, it is not to be so. The sound skips, the animations are jumpy, and load times are drastically longer with the 4X IDE drive as opposed to my 2X SCSI drive. I think something is not right, but the dealer says "That's normal." Yah. I guess even though some people say that the Atari platform is dead, it's still very much alive for many of us (though it's kicking me a lot less than my Windoz platform!) Oh well, on with the descriptions, some new, some old.... This first set may be found on Delphi. I'll list files from other locations later in the article. I've seen the demo of CAB 2.0, the graphical Web Browser from ASH that's great. CAB is the original creation of Alexander Claus and has now been purchased for commercial distribution by Application Systems Heidelberg (ASH). ASH is the company that brings you MagiC, MagiC-Mac, MagiC-PC, NVDI, Ease, F/A-18 Hornet, and more. This demo is for all ST-Falcon computers (I expect that you need at least one meg of RAM to run this, or at least to make it usable) and for all res other than ST low (which won't allow you to see all of the dialog boxes). This browser is fast, supports viewing of online pictures (in Mono and in TT medium the pictures show up quickly and look pretty good, even though they are dithered down), allows use of frames, online sound, GIF animations, and more. The demo is limited in that you can't save your favorite online addresses, but must type them in each time. I've downloaded two versions of this from Delphi, one which is in German and contains all the files needed to show you what's in the various hypertext links on the homepage and another version (considerably smaller) which has an English resource file (which you need to move from the ENGLISH folder to the main directory) but which doesn't have all of those extra files. Either one will show you what this program can do! You can even use it online if you get STiK v.1.21 and a SLIP or CSLIP connection! With this and the Internet tools soon coming out of Oregon Research Associates, it will be much easier for Atari people to browse the Internet! (note: I am online through Delphi and Genie, but I do most of my Internet access through AT&T Worldnet Service. Since July of '96 I've not had access to my account for a total of five months because of all the problems I've had with my clone computer. I called them up and asked them if there was any possibility of a refund for part of that time. They refunded it all! Pretty good!) Here are some animation related files... AQT_P096 is a simple Apple QuickTime player v.0.96 for the ST-Falcon computer (in mono, 16 or 256 colors) by Dieter Fiebelkorn (the author of that wonderful picture viewer/manipulator GEMView). This program will allow you to view CVID24, RLE8, RLE16, RLE24, RAW, SMC8 animation formats. Unfortunately, you can't listen to the sounds as you view the animations. A utility is included which will allow you to extract the sound information as a WAV file which you then can play on your computer (On the Falcon, you can finagle to play the sound at the same time the animation is running, but you have to work at it). There are versions available for the standard ST/STE (indeed, all 680x0 Atari's), a version for any 68020/30 based Atari, a version for computers with a math co-processor, and a version just for the Falcon. The speed of the 68000 version (on the 8 MHz ST) is quite slow (one frame ever couple of seconds) but it works fine otherwise. There are ways of speeding up the display by skipping a set number of frames between displayed frames. This allows you to see more of the animation more quickly. German & English docs included. Postcardware. AVIPL095 is a simple AVI animation player v.0.95 for the ST-Falcon computer (in mono, 16 or 256 colors) by Dieter Fiebelkorn (the author of that wonderful picture viewer/manipulator GEMView). This program will allow you to view CRAM8, CRAM16 and uncompressed, RLE8, RLE4 (untested) and CVID animation formats. Unfortunately, you can't listen to the sounds as you view the animations. A utility is included which will allow you to extract the sound information as a WAV file which you then can play on your computer (On the Falcon, you can finagle to play the sound at the same time the animation is running, but you have to work at it). There are versions available for the standard ST/STE (indeed, all 680x0 Atari's), a version for any 68020/30 based Atari, a version for computers with a math co-processor, and a version just for the Falcon. The speed of the 68000 version (on the 8 MHz ST) is quite slow (one frame ever couple of seconds) but it works fine otherwise. There are ways of speeding up the display by skipping a set number of frames between displayed frames, in fact there are lots of keyboard controls to tailor your animation display. German & English docs included. Postcardware. CYBERWAR is a true color .FLH animation created on the Falcon using Apex Media. It shows two warriors battling it out with a skeletoid being. Use the Falcon Apex viewer to see this animation. By Barry Summer. MOON is an .MPG animation by Sean O' Hara (?) showing a mischievous alien landing on the Moon, exiting his saucership, and bounding across the surface (in an excellent rendition of the Apollo astronaut's "Kangaroo walk"). The alien comes up to the flag left by the Apollo 11 astronauts, picks it up and ruturns it to his spaceship, where he stores it with several other items of interest he shouldn't have either. Check out PEPSI_ET.MPG for another animation featuring this alien. 1ST_GUIDE will allow you to view this animation (slowly) on any ST-Falcon computer. There are other MPG viewers (mostly for the Falcon, such as MPEGDSP viewer) that might allow you to see this faster and better. PEPSI_ET is an .MPG animation by Sean O' Hara (?) that shows an alien landing his saucership at a 24 hour gas station/convenience store. He gets out and walks into the store, visits the bathroom (!), and checks out the soda vending machine. He puts in his change and gets out a Pepsi can, pops it open, takes a swig, and walks back to his spaceship which then takes off into the unknown. Maybe he was on his way to the Moon. Check out MOON.MPG for another animation featuring this same alien. 1ST_GUIDE will allow you to view this animation (slowly) on any ST-Falcon computer. There are other MPG viewers (mostly for the Falcon, such as MPEGDSP viewer) that might allow you to see this faster and better. RIPPLE is an .FLI animation a rock that falls into a pool of water. It was created using POV Ray v.2. Unfortunately, this animation will not work with Brainstorm's MoviePlayer. It will work with the FLI players available for the Falcon or with the SUMMIT player if you have a video card. SNOWMAN is The Snowman, a Christmas demo brought to you directly from the Atari Land of Plenty -- (the then) West Germany. This demo was created using ST Replay 4 to digitize the music and The Grabber to digitize and animaae the graphics. It requires a color monitor, a D.S. drive and at least one meg of RAM. I think this is an absolutely WONDERFUL story of a boy and his snowman, their travels together, and heart-wrenching ending. Get this one. I've seen this before, but have always had a portion of the animation messed up. This version, recently uploaded to Delphi, is complete without that fault. STONEHDG is the Stonehenge .FLC animation created by Barry Summer using Apex Media and more (see below). This shows two older animations spliced together. He used the CAMERA movement option of CHRONOS to follow a flying saucer through a "buzzing" of the ancient Stonehedge ruins, and then fly off into space to fly across a planet's landscape, before blowing a cargo ship into pieces. In the upload description Barry goes on to tell that the original CHRONOS animation were .FLM format, so he used Prism Paint to convert the .FLM to DELTA, then used Cyberpaint to convert the .DLT to .SEQ format, then finally, using Apex Media, loaded the .SEQ segments and saved out as an .FLC animation (Whew!!!). This animation is designed to be viewed on a Falcon or PC, but if you have a graphics card check out SUMMIT to view this file on any ST-Falcon computer. SUMMIT is Summit a fast viewer for 256-color STs, MegaSTes and TTs equipped with graphics cards by Mike Hill (dated Sept. 9, 1995--my birthday!). Summit will display the following varieties of files: GIF (the 87a variety and the newer ones, interlaced or standard), FLI, FLC, and DL animations, and SAM, SPL and MOD (requires Paula running as well) sound files. Summit can be configured to display a series of pictures, animations, or sound files using a simple script. You may run Summit as an installed application or drag and drop a graphic or sound file on those newer versions of TOS or alternative desktops that support that feature, or finally, you can just run it and use the item selector to select the file you wish. As far as I can tell Summit doesn't work on my TT without a graphics card even in TT low res (with 256 colors available). It displays a picture or animation, but with many lines left out of the display and with the colors so mixed up the ghostly view is useless. I don't know about a Falcon. It was designed to work with graphic cards (Crazy Dots, Nova, Cyrel) so if you don't have one of those.... 68000 and 68030 versions are included. Docs included. E-mailware. TOP3D is a 3D .FLI animation of a raytraced top spinning on a wood surface. To view this file in 3D you will need a set of Red/Blue glasses. VISION1 is an FLC animation created through Apex Media. It shows a view through a window looking outside from the perspective of control station. The window shows an old Cyber .SEQ animation of a spacecraft under attack. That animation was created using Chronos and Cyberpaint and then imported into Apex. You may view this animation using a Falcon or a PC with a FLC viewer. By Barry Summer. WARS is the TT Wars demo by Tony Barker converted for use with an STE or Falcon (converted by Maennlein of TFM). This is an excellent video capture and animation demo that shows a lot of cuts from the Star Wars movie where Luke Skywalker is attacking the Death Star. It shows the scene from many different viewpoints, allows you to control the animation speed, sound (stereo), and animation overlays on the video via the keyboard. When run at the original speed the animation lasts about 1.5 minutes. Directions are included. Requires at least 2 meg of RAM. Color only. This version includes the original TT version and the files required to run it on the STE or Falcon. XMAS1988 is a Christmas animation in .FLC format by Barry Summer. Originally a .SEQ animation he converted it into .FLC format for the wider computer market. It shows Santa riding on a sleigh traveling over the ground. A Christmas Tree is in the sleigh. XMASSEQ is a Christmas animation in .SEQ format by Barry Summer (done for Christmas 1988). It shows Santa riding on a sleigh traveling over the ground. A Christmas Tree is in the sleigh. See XMAS1988 for a .FLC version of this file. Now for some Databases INTCH152 is the In-Touch Personal Database v.1.5 by Lorne White. In Touch is a powerful and flexible database system for organizing and managing all your personal information such as names, addresses, phone numbers and calender events. With a touch of the keyboard or mouse you can easily find and select records, or search for text and dates, get date reminders, categorize records, and print a wide variety of envelopes, labels, addresses, date books, and calendar labels (using SpeedoGDOS). A calendar window provides a view of any month of any year and provides a listing of all events in that month. You can also import and export all the data into and from other programs, making it your "master" database of personal information. Lots of features! This demo is limited in that you may save only five records per file and print only five labels per record. Numerous samples are included. ST-Falcon compatible. Shareware. I had originally tried to run this program within three nested folders (my hard drive gets a bit complicated), but I was unable to load the sample files when doing so. Running from less than three nested folders or from the root directory was fine. STE and Geneva compatible (at least). STFINDER is STreet Finder v.1.0 by John Buchanan. STreet finder is an address book that looks like an address book! Run the program and you find yourself looking a a spiral ring address book. At the bottom of the book is a series of "chicklets" with the letters of the alphabet imprinted on them. Click on the letter beginning the name you are searching for and the book opens to that page. There's some neat animation of the pages turning, too! One very nice thing is the cross-referencing of names in STreet Finder. You may place "Michael Burkley" under the "B" letter, but because "Michael" begins with "M" the reference will also appear in the "M" page. Now those names won't get lost, no matter how you file them! The archive contains both an .ACC and .PRG version (the author recommends that you use the program for inserting your data and printing it out, but that you use the .ACC for all the other times. That's because the accessory is always handy, but it is limited in that you can only add 10 new addresses each session due to memory limitations). Docs included. ST-TT compatible (at least). Shareware. TWSTDEMO is the demo of the Twist 2 database from HiSoft (distributed through Oregon Research Associates). Twist 2 is a very nice address, phone, contact, and just about anything you tell it to record "graphical" database program with GDOS/SpeedoGDOS/NVDI display support, but which uses your internal printer fonts for printing (it has a built-in printer queue as well). You can only save your files which have less than ten records in this demo. ST-Falcon and Geneva compatible. I always like Games... 3DLAB010 is 3D-Lab v.0.1 by Dirk Hagedorn (dated Aug. 27, 1995). This awesome program is a GEM-based 3-D maze (Labyrinth) creation and negotiation program for the ST-Falcon computers. Just run the program and run with it! You find yourself in a set of corridors and you must find your way to the exit door (using the arrow keys). At first I thought this was so easy it was dumb. That was my first try when the maze was only a 4 by 4 grid. When I succeeded in that maze the program redrew it as a 5 by 5 grid, then a 6 by 6, and so on. By the time it was 11 by 11 I was really struggling! 3D-Lab is TOS, Multi-TOS, MagiC, MagiCMac, and Geneva compatible in ST mono or higher res. Run this as either a program (.APP) or as an .ACC (just rename it to suit). Text docs and online ST-Guide help file included (but they are in German, which doesn't really matter as the game doesn't really need many instructions. ALIEN_TH is the Alien Thing game demo. Your mission, and you have no choice but to try to complete it or die--after all, you did double-click on the game!), is to repair the two control panels and to exit to the next level (which is only available in the full game). Along the way you have to find ammo, weapons, access cards, and something else....Oh yes, you have to avoid being killed by all those nasty aliens who are out to eat you (or something worse)! You're on the alien ship which is on its way to crash into the earth. You have to stop that from happening. Excellent graphics and gameplay. Docs included. Available as a commercial game. ST/STE compatible. At least one meg of RAM. Color. DEADLAND is the ST/STE/Falcon game Deadland by Justin Ward (dated January 6, 1996). It's a lot like Cannon Fodder, but with its differences. Your ship has crashed on Usula Minor, and you need to get back home. Not only that you need to take as many crewpersons with you as you can (after all, they are the ones who have to build the new ship for you. You have to budget your resources, exploit (in a gentle way, of course) your environment, defend against the native Ursulan's, and survive. Not only that, but you need to complete your ship and leave, all in only 31 Ursulan days. This is a graphically oriented game, controlled by the mouse. Docs included. At least one meg and a color monitor (ST low res). Shareware. GENOCIDE is the demo of Genocide - Extermination of a Nation, by Paradise Software (dated 1995). Genocide is a one or two player game (only one player in this demo) of a fast 3D Shoot'em up for the Atari STE. This program uses most of the STE's Hardware capabilities (blitter, DMA sound, scrolling, etc.) so unfortunately it won't work on an ST(fm). Do you remember ST Invaders where you have to battle off waves of enemies flooding down on you from the sky? Well, that might be the great-grandfather of this graphically oriented, colorful game. The play area is much larger than your screen (just move to the edge of the screen using your joystick and the playing area will scroll with you), and you have to defend it all. In this demo you have to complete 10 waves and destroy the BOSS (well, actually you don't have to do that, you could lose instead). Docs included. Check your Atari store for the full game. MAZECMBT is Maze Combat v. 1.095 by Sean Dougherty of Two Worlds Software Production (dated August 2, 1994). This shareware game (limited in that you can only play it five times without either registering or uncompressing it from archive again and no null-modem option) provides you with a massive number of realistic looking mazes, robots, missiles, and mines which you can use to battle things out with friends or enemies. With another computer using Maze Combat (both equiped with modems or null-modem cables), you can battle it out, or you can play in single-player mode (not nearly as much fun!). Chatting windows are provided as well. ST, STe, Falcon, and TT compatible in ST Low. Keyboard controlled. Docs included. MAZEWAR is Mazewar ST by Andrei Ellman. The object of this game is to negotiate your way around a maze and shoot anything blocking the path between you and your opponents (and, of course, to shoot your opponents as well!). It will allow you to play with 0 (computer vs. itself) to eight players (wow! This requires use of a centronics parallel port adaptor and adaptors for the STE extended joystick ports--docs for both adaptors included). If you shoot a wall sometimes it will blow up, catching anyone too close to it in the explosion. Sometimes the wall doesn't blow up and you have figure out your way through the maze with finese rather than brute strength. A new maze is generated each time. You may play in teams or individually. You can even play against the computer, and the computer is pretty smart! The author says that it will run on "all ST versions", but I don't know if that means the TT or Falcon. Joystick controlled. Docs included. Written in STOS basic. Shareware. MISERMND is Miser Mind v.1.0 by Dennis Miquel (dated August, 1994). This game, which works on all ST/STE/TT/Falcon computers with either mono or color monitors is an expanded clone of the game MasterMind. You can choose four to eight pegs and six through 12 colors (shaded circles are used in mono or in ST med. res). You get twelve chances to guess the order and color of the pegs the computer has hidden. It's not too hard to do with four pegs and six colors, but it gets a lot harder the more pegs and colors you add! There is both an English and French resource file included. Mouse controlled. Docs (English and French) included. SHAREWARE. MUNSIE01 is the first (and last, so far) Munsie Video Newsletter (on Disk). Run this (on your ST-Falcon with at least one meg of RAM and a color monitor) and check out the Munsie line of Shareware Games and utilities. He has included text, screenshots, and more here, all in an excellent animated interface. Uploaded May, 1995. I haven't heard anything from Dave for ages, but his games are still excellent, and I recommend them to you (hey, why not, I'll give you a description of some of them, following). ASTR_ST is Asteroidia ST for all ST/STe/TT/Mega STe users, by David Munsie. This is one of those "must have" games. It's the best Asteroids style game I've ever seen. If you don't know what that is I'll tell you (I'll tell you anyway!). You fly around in near-Earth space trying to destroy all the asteroids that are heading towards home. You'll also have to contend with little alien thingys that want to destroy your ship! Zap them all with your energy cannon. The rotating 3D asteroids are astounding and the debris when you blast them are cool (and sometimes dangerous!). The sound effects are excellent (and on the 2 meg+ STE/TT you can use the separate ASTR_DMA file to get even better sound) and the background picture of the earth is beautiful. This takes advantage of my accelerated STE for faster and smoother play, and exits cleanly back to the desktop. STE owners can use the Jaguar joypad for control, everyone else uses the standard joystick (note: if you are using the joystick don't select the Joystick/Joypad option or you won't be able to do anything on the computer until you re-boot). Shareware with docs and registration information included. Until you register you only get one life per game. Any color res.. I recommend this game! ASTR_DMA is a file for those of you with STE's or TT who want great sound with your Asteroidia ST (see description ASTR_ST). If you have at least 2 meg of RAM in your computer I recommend that you get this! ASTR_FAL is Asteroidia Falcon, the Falcon only version of David Munsie's Asteroid-style game. This has all of the features of the ST-TT version (see ASTR_ST for that description) and more. Featuring 50KHz MOD sound (get ASTR_MUS for this option) played in the background (you can even add your own MOD files), fast and smooth play action. I haven't seen this in play, but if it's better than the Asteroidia ST I have used (and registered), WOW!. Check it out! Shareware with docs and registration information included. Until you register you only get one life per game. TV/RGB/VGA. I recommend this game! ASTR_MUS is a file for use with ASTR_FAL. It adds amazing 50HHz MOD music to your Asteroidia Falcon experience! FRANTICK is Frantick v.1.1 by David Munsie (dated Jan. 3, 1995). This version will run (and run fast, too!) on any ST-Falcon computer (with at least one meg of RAM). David has done it again by making Frantick even faster and more compatible than the previous version (now works with Warp 9 and quits cleaning from my hard drive). Frantick is aptly named for for it provides you with a reflex-challenging, frantic experience of blasting just about anything that comes at you on the screen. I find it hard to even make it past level one! Make it past the savage mutates, defeat the shrill assaults of deadly raptors, outlast the intense salvos of the blazer fighters, and you might become a hero. Don't celebrate too soon, for the head hunters, hardheads, sidewinders, sparkers, swarmers, and xasers will light up your life if you let your guard down. Can you defeat all 100 waves of the combat simulator (and meet a digitized picture of the maker)? Probably not, but you're welcome to prove me wrong! Do all of this to the tune of multi channel arcade sound effects, digital music with digital sound effects, DMA background music (see FRANTRK1 and FRANTRK2 for two different sound files for use on STE and newer machines with at least 2 meg of RAM), and much more. It is even compatible with the Jaguar Powerpad controller (on STE and Falcon machines)! On a TT or Falcon (and accelerated ST/Es) there is a super fast Frenzy mode where you can really rack up the points (and die pretty quickly, too!). There's even a two player mode! This game is previewware. Try it and if you like it enough to register you will get a key which will enable all the bells and whistles of the game (not many of which are disabled in the first place!). Docs included. Best when run from a hard drive, but a floppy system works, too. Color only. Joystick controlled. FRANTRK1 is the original music which goes with Frantick by David Munsie. If you have a 2 meg STE-Falcon then get this or FRANTRK2 (or both!) for some excellent music to go along with your excellent FRANTICK game. FRANTRK2 is the second (in a series> of music/sound disks for use with David Munsie's Frantick. This file is for STe-Falcon computers with at least two meg of free RAM. The samples are taken from "Anthrax - Bring the Noise!" Requires Frantick, that excellent shoot-em-down arcade shareware game by Dave Munsie. Just pop this file in your Frantick folder and you're off! Docs included. DOODL1B is ST Doodle v.1.0b by David Munsie, the author of MAGE, the excellent GFA Basic Game creator and more. This is a very nice mono- only painting program with a pile of useful and unique features. Kid tested, but you don't need to be "any five year old" to understand and use this program. It contains over 40 drawing modes which allow you to draw 3D figures quickly and easily, make beautiful flowing shapes, and much more. If you register this you can print out (on an Epson compatible 9 pin printer) pictures 14 feet wide y 9 feet high (in multiple passes!). Sample pictures and docs included. Requires at least one meg RAM, a hard drive, or a Double-sided floppy drive. SQUAROFF is another excellent shareware game from Dave Munsie (date May, 1995). It features good graphics and sound effects, and multiple music tracks. Square Off! is an update to Tertris(tm) with three different modes of play. The Classic mode is a one player game where you seek to stack the falling blocks in such a way as to complete an horizontal line. When you do that line will disappear, freeing up its space. When you don't complete enough lines and the blocks reach the top of the playing field, you lose. One nice thing about this mode is that the blocks fall in the same pattern each time. This allows you to fairly judge your gaming skills against yourself or other players. The Arcade Mode features 20 levels of increasing challenge (only seven in this non-registered version). To get to the next level you have to clear a set number of lines (increasing with each level). You also get bombs to blow up some mis-placed blocks (though since they appear randomly, they might just mess things up as well!). The final mode is the two Player Battle Mode. Go head to head against an opponent. Survive longer than (s)he and you win. What makes it especially fun (or gruesome) is that when you clear two or more lines at once those lines (minus one) get sent over to your opponent. You can really pile them up! Lots of other options, points, graphics, etc., but you get the idea. Shareware. Register and you will get a key to unlock your unique copy. You may register through Dave, Steve's Atari Sales, Suzy B's Software, or L.A.P.D.. ST-Falcon compatible, at least one meg of RAM required. Runs from floppy (2 DS Disks) or hard drive. Color only. To uncompress this archive on a floppy system you must first place the archive either in a RAM disk or on a second floppy drive. Then use STZIP26 or DCX220C and select the all the files in the archive EXCEPT the DISK2 folder and its files. Uncompress those on a blank DS floppy disk. Then repeat the procedure except select only the DISK2 folder and its files. Uncompress those to a second floppy disk. If you have a hard drive system just uncompress the whole batch at once (if you don't already have a hard drive I recommend that you get one!). G_SHELL is G_Shell by David Munsie. G_SHELL is an interactive easy to use enviroment for use with GFA ASIC 3.5/3.6 which will work on any ST-Falcon in color or monochrome (TV/RGB/VGA monitors). It rovides quick and efficient interface that allows you to edit, compile, and debug your programs more easily and horoughly than ever before. Now you never need to use the MENU.PRG which came with your GFA Basic (which I understand a lot of GFA Programmers detest). David Munsie has written this to fulfill his dreams of a GFA Shell, and since he is SOME GFA programmer, you can imagine that it will do just about everything you might wish it to do (he lists just 23 different features and I'm sure there are more). Shareware (with multiple ways to register) with a few features disabled (register and get a key which will enable everything). Also included in this archive is the text part of the 2nd GFA Basic Manual v. 3 by Han Kempen (dated December 1993) with an interactive viewer thrown in (see GFA2MAN3 for the full file). Back to the rest of the games... PACMEN is Pacmen, another excellent 8-player game by Andrei Ellman of Wacko Software (dated Jan. 9, 1994). Believe it or not, this pacman game can be played by up to eight players simultaneously (two from the regular joystick ports, two using the printer-joystick adaptor, and if you have an STE, another four using those ports on the sides (Instructions on how to build the nescesary adaptors are included)). Any non-human players can either be controled by the computer, or completely switched off. There are other differences between this and the original PacMan game. In this version each player has an infinite number of lives, and the game only ends when all of the dots are eaten. The winner is the person who's eaten the most (Burp!). There are also missiles which you can fire, at the other players, other missiles, or at the ghosts. The author says that it will run on "all ST versions", but I don't know if that means the TT or Falcon. Docs included. ROLLER_C is a demo of "The Roller Coaster Experience" game from Solution Software (dated 1995). You have to figure out the best way to build your rollercoaster with the materials on hand in the limited time allowed. You also had better not make any mistakes, as once you place a section of the track it is welded in place. Only if you attempt to place track where it cannot fit are you able to move it again. You had better not make any dead ends or flying leaps, as you are going to have to be in the roller coaster as it tests the course (not really, but it sounds good). You must start the ball rolling down your track before time runs out. This demo is limited (of course), but the full version has over 1,000 levels! Color only. Docs in opening screen. This is a STOS game, and I am not sure on what machines it will play (I'm sure the ST and STE, but I've not tested it on my TT or on a Falcon). If it doesn't work on those machines you can always use STOSFX30 to fix it for your machine (though keep a copy of the unfixed program to pass on to your friends). RUMY5001 is the TOS 1.00-1.62 demo version of Red Cat Rummy 500+ by Thomas J. Starace of YAM Software. Until now, if you wanted to play Rummy 500 you needed a deck of cards, a table, maybe a rainy day, and most importantly, another human being. Well now you can play Rummy 500 any time you want with this, the only Rummy 500 game program for Atari Computers! Red Cat Rummy 500+ features high quality graphics, sound, gameplay and the ability to Load and Save extended games against the computer. And with the 'plus' feature you can actually play Rummy 1 Million if you want! For those who really like a challenge, play on the hardest setting to see how good you really are. Red Cat Rummy 500+ features an easy to use interface that allows you to handle the cards intuitively. And if you still prefer to play against another human being, (always more fun), you can play online via modem with another person! This demo version doesn't include the Load or Save game feature, the ability to set the score total which wins, and plays for 15 moves and then quits (you can re-start it again to play anew, if you wish). Red Cat Rummy 500+ comes in versions for TOS 1.xx, TOS 2.05 and 2.06, TOS 3.xx, and the Falcon (See RUMY5001-4). You must get the program for your specific machine. Requires at least one meg RAM, a color monitor, and a DS floppy or hard drive. TEMPEST is the Tempest 2000 demo game for the 386DX-40 or higher computer with MS-DOS 5.0 or higher or Windows 3.1/95. Now, you normally wouldn't expect me to review a program for a non-Atari machine, and I'm not going to do so, really. It's just that Tempest 2000 for the Jag is one of my favorite games and I thought that I would look at this port to the "PC" world. Tempest PC allows a two player mode (only with two computers and it's disabled in the demo), music (with compatible sound card), and excellent play (so I've been told). This game is commercially available and comes on a CD (not required for the demo, obviously). It is joystick or keyboard controlled. It also looks like it is a royal pain to get to work on your system. Directions for the required modifications of your CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT file are included. It ends with (my paraphrase), "If you still can't get it to work ask someone who knows what they are doing" I guess I'll just play his on my Jaguar! TOWRS_D1 and TOWRS_D2 are two archives making making up Towers v.1.5, a 3D one or two player dungeon Game from JV Enterprises (dated 1995). If you liked Dungeon Master you'll like Towers. Run it from your floppy or hard drive. Choose from one of four characters and then travel through the Tower/Dungeon gathering up the supplies you find on the way, battling enemies who seek you out, and trying to find your way o the end--and to survival. The graphics are nice, the controls(mouse and/or keyboard) are easily used and controlled), and the sounds are excellent (who is that tapping on that door?). Towers will only run on a completely bare one meg system. Towers will run from a hard drive or floppy (Double-Sided only). It allows you to save and load games, too. Connect with another Atari computer using a null-modem, MIDI cables, or Hayes AT command compatible, 14.4K or more Error Correction modem for dual player action (this feature now works on ST-Falcon computer with just one meg of memory, or more, of course). Towers even includes a simple text routine so you can communicate with your partner during the game! Save and reload your games (this only works if you remember to save your game BEFORE you die!) ST-Falcon compatible. Detailed docs. Color only. Towers used to be slightly disabled shareware. Now it is fully playable, at all levels, and is "Tryware." If you like the game send the author $5 (wow! Only $5! That sounds like a honey of a deal!). T_ORI210 is a demo of "The Original" v.2.10 shareware game by Gerrit Meyer (dated July 20, 1994). Have you ever played the game Boulder-Dash? It's fun, maneuvering about, avoiding being crushed or trapped by the boulders crashing down around you, gathering the necessary gems to open the cave exit, and all the while, outwhitting those monsters out to get you. The caves are four times the area of your screen, and you utomatically and smoothly scroll about as you move "Rockford" about the cave. The Original is an ST-Falcon (one-meg RAM and color monitor or TV required) game with excellent graphics and sound, that emulates Boulder-Dash very well, except for the fact that it adds lots of improvements. This demo is limited in that only one player, instead of up to four may pay, only ten caves may be accessed, you only get two lives (instead of three) and no bonus lives are available, you can't load any additional game files (extra caves), and you must start at the starting cave each time instead of being able to start at any of your solved caves. Those limitations don't stop you from having an enjoyable time with "The Original." Just imagine what it would be like when you register! Joystick controlled. Docs included. Shareware. Run in ST Low res. ULT_AREN is the playable demo (one level with one set of characters-- Kato and Ted) of the STE/Falcon game Ultimate Arena v.1.3. If you like jumping, kicking, and bashing, then this game is for you! It is a "Mortal Kombat" type fighting game featuring excellent graphics and sound. It is controlled by a joystick or the Jaguar Power-Pad and may be run from either a floppy or hard drive. The demo and docs are in French (but you can figure it out), but the complete game is available commercially in English. And now for a bunch of Utilities, Sounds, Pictures, Text files, etc... REFRESH is Refresh v.1.00 by Robert W. Stiles (dated 1995). This is a great program for all of us who have had floppies laying about for he past nearly 10 years! It will allow you to refresh the magnetic field on floppy disks without the loss of any data. It does this by reading the format of your disk and then copying a track into memory. It then writes that track back to the floppy in the exact same place. It will work with single-, double- end high-density disks. If it finds an error in the disk it will identify it by track location. The program will also allow you to format disks, too. ST-Falcon compatible in all res. Online help, docs, and source code ("C") included. UPCA is the "Universal Print Control Accessory" by Mark Slagell, the author of the simply fantastic SilkMouse (see SILKMOUS which is v.3.2 of that excellent Mouse Accelerator/Smoother/Screensaver). UPCA (dated 1995) is an accessory (or PRG, just rename it) that sends any string or strings of your choice to a printer hooked to the parallel port of an Atari TOS computer automatically at bootup or at any time you wish. A string (which you may create, edit, and save) may hold up to 33 characters, each of which can be drawn from the entire 0-255 range. This allows a great deal of control when, for instance, printing a text file from the desktop or from within a text editor. You might use UPCA to reset the printer, change fonts or print quality, set margins, or do any number of other things depending on your printer's capabilities. Comes with a sample data file with some codes for the Panasonic 1124i printer. Check out your printer manual and then get to work! This is a great little utility! Docs included. Freeware. WORDWRIT is a group of printer configuration files (PRINTER.CFG) for WORDWRITER II (I am not sure if his is TimeWorks WordWriter ST v.2.0 or some other program--the former, I suspect). Some may or not work. The compiler (Harry Hill) has tried them with his Epson Action Laser II in the HP Mode. DeskJet users should e able to use at least one DJ.CFG file. Hopefully this will help those who like WW II and cannot currently print on a laser printer. C_PSLIB is a demo of the PostScript library by C-Graph Software (formerly Barton Creek software) for C. It works on all ST/STe/TT computers and includes track and pair kerned text demos as part of the demo of 12 aspects of the library. This will allow a C programmer to have all the benefits of PostScript without having to learn the postscript language. The Font library has now been linked in so track and/or pair kerning can also be demonstrated in addition to the other font specific information. Basically the demo is a menu program that one an choose the different options. And the postscript code will be generated automatically into a file called default.ps or directly to the printer. It only works with the file default and not with the printer. The postscript output file is just a plain ascii file so one can look at it using a text editor or word processor. Dated April 28, 1993). Docs included. M2GEM147 is Crystal, a highly-portable GEM-Library for GEM and Modula-2 systems under PC-DOS (with PC-GEM), GEMDOS (with ATARI-GEM), FlexOS (with X/GEM) and UNIX (with X/GemOnX) v.1.47 by Ulrich Kaiser (Dated May, 14, 1995). This appears to be a work in progress. Docs are in English and German (more German than English). STOSGAME is the STOS Game Idea Generator for STOS Programmers v.1.80 y Andrei Ellman (dated 1994). This program will put together a random assortment of ideas which might be useful for you STOS programmers out there who are struggling with creative ideas to use in your games. I'm not exactly sure how this works, but it sounds like a good idea! It has been created using a fixed version of STOS and will run on all TT/STE up to TOS 2.06. Supposedly it will work on TT and Falcon computers as well (but if it doesn't you can always fix it with NDP11 -- to unpack the program file, and STOSFX30 - to write the new TOS information to the program. Directions within program. STOS .BAS file is also included. A Printer is recommended. Color only. AUTIOTXT is the digitized Sound Format FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) v.3.01 by Guido van Rossum (dated March 23, 1993). This text file(s) gives detailed descriptions of a variety of digitized sound formats for a wide variety of machines. It also will provide you with some interesting tips on digitized data file compression. It even mentions Atari computers! CDPLR13D is CD-Player v.1.3d by Alexander Clauss (dated Nov. 13, 1995). This freeware audio CD-Player for the ST-Falcon runs as an .ACC or a .PRG. With all of the functions of a normal audio CD player, this program shows you how much fun it can be to play audio CD's off of your computer! From the German docs it appears that you can also copy the audio tracks to your hard disk in DVS, AVR, WAVE, AU, or SND formats in 8/16 bit, mono/stereo. Sounds good! You must have a CD ROM driver installed on your computer MetaDOS v.2.6 from Atari is free. ExtenDOS by Roger Burrows already has a CD audio player included, so you wouldn't use this with that, though I suppose you could for the copy functions). This version works with the newest version of ExtenDOS, so they both may be used. The program comes with resource files in German, English, and Spanish are included. Use the English resource to learn the program and then switch to another RSC file to learn a bit of the other languages! English (a bit) and German (a lot) docs. GEMCON10 is GEMCon v.1.0 by Forrest Blood (dated May 6, 1993). GEMCon's sole purpose is to convert digitized sound samples to GEMSound format. There is an option to convert ST Replay samples to a format useable by the STE Stereo sound chip. GEMSound is a control panel extension (CPX) which will allow you to assign a unique sound to each system event, ie. open window, close window, key click, etc. GEMSound will ONLY work on an Atari computer with the DMA Stereo sound chip - the STE, MegaSTE, TT and hopefully the Falcon. While GEMCon will run on any ST, the converted samples will only be useable on a computer with Stereo sound. The GFA Basic source code is included along with detailed docs. CAO_496 is the Classic Atari Online magazine, vol. 1, Issue 1 (dated April, 1996). This is an excellent ASCII magazine published by David Schmudde and edited by Snappy. I enjoyed reading this, even though I don't have an Atari 8-bit computer! It is full of reviews of games and productivity software, information about the hardware, and more. It provides you with addresses and phone numbers where you might buy the various carts and software, which is very valuable if you want to get something new or replace something broken. Well done. CD_LIST7 is the Atari CD Rom Master List - Issue 7 - December 1995 from Greg Kopchak of It's All Relative Software. It's packed with over 1,500 CD's that are accessible on your Atari. That doesn't mean that they are all Atari Specific (though there are 31 Atari specific CD ROMS listed--for example: The Atari Software Treasury, aka The Suzy B's CD). What it does mean is that the CD must contain over 75% of its value in files and applications that can be used with the Atari line of computers. Do you want a reason to get a CD ROM drive? Well, here it is! ETEXT is a presentation by Dr. Jeffery Triggs of the North American Reading Program of the Oxford English Dictionary at the Tenth Waterloo Conference, 1994. I found this article entitled "Varieties of Electronic Experience, or, What Should an Electronic Text Be Like?" very interesting. He covers all manners of entering text into computer form from image files (great for reproducing text exactly as it is in the book but very poor for searching for specific information), Optical Character Recognition (OCR) programs, HyperText Markup Language (HTML), and SGML, the author's favorite (unfortunately, he obviously knows so much about that markup language that he never defines it!). The text is in ASCII format, with marks within it which define italics, opening quotes, etc. At the end of his article he appends a variety of texts marked using a variety of methods. BIGBEN is Big Ben by Uland Taffner (dated 1990). This is a small PRG/ACC (just rename) that displays both the time and the date (in European format) in the top right menubar. Designed to work with any ST/TT computer in all resolutions (though in ST medium it only shows the time as there is not room in the menubar for the date as well), this program will not mess up your display when you select the desktop SHOW routine (you know how most corner clocks leave a series of times down the right side of the screen). Documentation is in German, but you really don't need the docs (as far as I can tell). BIG_BOB is Big Bob the Finder v.0.92 by Mark Slagell (dated 1995). Mark is the the author of SilkMouse and numerous other fine programs, and he's done it again with Big Bob. Big Bob is an .ACC/.PRG no-wildcard item finder. It quickly finds files and folders by identifying character sequences in their names in much the same way a word processor finds text strings in a document. Optionally, it can also look for strings in the files themselves (which is GREAT!). When you not only don't remember where something is buried in your gazillions of nested directories, but also aren't quite sure of its name, you will find Bob indispensible. The interface is easy to use, and the docs are clear. This is another program to hold on to! DISKL333 is DiskList v.3.33 by Peter Seitz (dated Sept. 7, 1995). This is an excellent disk cataloging utility which will allow you to catalog not only your floppy disks but also your hard drives as well. It's always nice to know what's on your floppies, but for floppies the real question for me is "where" they are when I want them! With hard drives I always know where they are, but "What" is on them is something else! The docs are in German, but the program resource file has been translated into English so it's easy to use (the German resource file is also included). STE and Geneva compatible (at least). My note says I found this on UNI-KL (hmmm, but I had it in the Delphi folder? Who knows!). ELFBAK29 is ELFBACK v.2.9 by Jay Kormylo of E.L.F Software (files dated January 25, 1996). ELFBACK provides an easy way to do hard disk backups and restores to floppies or other disk drives (requires TOS 1.4 or better with 2 meg or more of RAM). It can use data compression to reduce the number of floppies needed, and stores files in RAM to speed up I/O. It uses the "archive bit" in the file directory to indicate that the file has een archived (for use with incremental backups). It also allows you to inspect each floppy before you write on it, and to either reformat, erase (faster than reformatting), or use the remaining space on the floppy and preserve the existing files. It has built in HELP features. Almost every dialog has a HELP button in the upper right corner. Docs included. Shareware. ST-TT (Falcon?) and Geneva compatible. Note, he has produced a newer version (in Feb, 1997) which I have not yet reviewed. That's faster and better all around. It's ELFBK211, which is Elfback v.2.1, yes, v.2.1. I guess the author decided that his old version 2.1-2.9 were really 2.01-2.09. Not too confusing if you check out the dates! MEMFIL31 is MemFile v.3.1 by Dan Wilga of Gribnif Software (dated July 16, 1996). MemFile is an .ACC/.PRG that allows you to view and edit any portion of your computer's memory, a file on any disk drive, or the individual sectors of any drive. Because MemFile can be used as a desk accessory, it has the added advantage that it is available from any GEM application, so you can easily call it up if, say for instance, you are debugging a program and you want to make sure that it has written a file correctly without having to leave the program you are working on. It is also a moveable window which means that you can re-position it to another location on the screen or even click on another open window. Of course it works with NeoDesk and Geneva! Docs included. One problem with this program (a major one for me) is that MemFile can only access disks with sectors up to 1024 bytes per sector. Since all of my hard drive partitions use more than that... NEO_003 is contains a patch program which will update an original NeoDesk 4 release 002 disk, changing its contents to release 003. This new version includes the ability to assign more custom drive icons, has improved loading speed, new window and button color options, support for the XACC and AV-Protocols, can copy files with Kobold, and has many other small changes. BUT! once you upgrade to this version keep on going using NEO_004 and NEO_005! WRLDCLKA is World Clock v.1.0a by Dan Wilga of Gribnif Software (dated 1995). I really like this program (and accessory--just rename to suit). It shows a map of the world with some dozens of cities and countries marked on it. Just click on one of the marked locations and the current time and date of the location pops up onscreen. The program's database takes into account which locations observe daylight savings time, too! If you click on an area of the map not specifically marked the latitude and longitude is shown. There are several options you may select as well. Dan uses this to avoid calling someone across the world at a time when they would likely resent it! I use it just to see how big the world is compared to the corner I am so comfortable in. It's a good educational tool for children (and growing adults). It will run on any TOS version, on a single-tasking or multi-tasking system (such as Geneva, of course!), and in all video resolutions (including graphic cards. Docs included. If you use this send Dan some Chocolate (with or without nuts!). He likes chocolate! SRW is the STOS ReWriter v.1.02f by Andrei Ellman (dated April 17, 1994). I enjoy this program. As the author says, it is an "artificial insanity" generator. It takes any text file which you create in the SRW format and massages it and outputs a riotous parody of it for you to read and share. There are a number of examples for you to chuckle over. It prints the output to the screen and to the printer. It has been created using a fixed version of STOS that is good for all TOS up to TOS 2.06. I tried using STOS Fix 3.0 on this file (after using New De-Pack v.1.1 to uncompress the program), but could not get it STOSFX30) to correct the file for my TT. So...apparently it won't work on a TT. GEMNMR is a program by Uwe Seimet that will allow you to simulate dynamic NMR Spectrum (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Imagery--the same thing that the medical profession has prettified up as MRI, dropping the "Nuclear" name). Many molecules exhibit temperature dependent NMR spectrum, and by using this program you can simulate what you should see for specific temperature levels in your sample. Docs and program all in German. ST-Falcon compatible (a TT and Falcon version taking advantage of the math co-processor is available for a fee). Here are some Portfolio programs Jens of Germany sent over to us (posted on Delphi). ATADEMO is a small program for the Atari Portfolio that will automatically display a series of text files you create. You may use this as an advertising tool, a way to memorize something (like a biblical text), or, I imagine, for lots of other things. Three texts are included (it looks like they are formatted to completely fit on the Port screen. No docs. CLOCK is a little Portfolio program that displays the current time and date. You can switch between HH:MM:SS and HH:MM by pressing the space bar. Depending on the mode the program is in, the power drain can be considerable, so the author (as represented by Paralax Software Publishers) recommends you use an adaptor if you run this program often. Docs included. EDIT is a text editor for the Portfolio by an unknown to me author (no name in docs or in program file as far as I can see). Edit allows you to edit files of up to 160 characters per line and up to 2730 lines. The screen will display up to 23 lines of text and 79 characters. You can scroll through the text to see more of your document if needed. Features like insert/overwrite, wordwrap (or not), delete/ undelete, case change, ASCII code insert, search and replace, printing, and many more are featured. PFBOOT is a set of program compiled by Michael D. Weisner that will allow you to make serial port transfers between your Portfolio and an MS-DOS compatible machine. The programs are XTERM1.COM, BINHEX.COM, HEXBIN.COM and CHKSUM.COM by Jim Strauss and the author's own PFLOAD.EXE, PFBOOT.BAT and LOAD.BAT. PFLOAD is a program that ties them all together so making it easy to do these transfers. Docs included. RPNCALC is RPNCALC by Scott T. Schad. This Portfolio program is the author's attempt (successful, I expect), to turn his (your's, too) Portfolio into a scientific calculator as well as all that it usually is. RPNCALC emulates a Reverse Polish Notation scientific calculator on the Atari Portfolio. I LOVE calculators that allow me to use RPN. It is really an excellent way to do complicated calculations. RPN does take a bit of getting used to, but it's worth it. This calculator program does everything a scientific calculator can do. It looks like the author has done a good job here. Docs included. ST_FOLIO is Portfolio Partner v.1.9 by David Becker. This program will allow you to input all of your portfolio database information into you ST and then transfer it into the Portfolio (via the Port's Parallel Interface and an IBM PC or via the Serial Interface with a null modem cable and your ST). This saves a lot of time and effort because it's a lot easier to type on your ST than on your Portfolio! Docs included. Freeware. UPDT104 is the v.1.04 update from Atari of the Portfolio's operating system. This fixes the "Space-Return bug in the editor. Docs included. XTERM1 is the second generation Terminal with XModem and Text File Transfer for the Atari/DIP Portfolio by Jim Straus (dated Nov. 24, 1989). It is a simple terminal program for the Serial Interface. It allows files to be sent or received using the XModem protocol. It also allows files to be sent with no translation and files to be captured. Docs included. Back to regular ST-Falcon files... CDI_105 is the Compact Disk Indexer (CDI) v.1.05m for BBS systems and BBS ready CD-ROMs. It provides you with an easy way to access your CD-ROM online. Up to 255 individual file areas can be accessed, and descriptions of the files on the CD to be displayed online (alas, only one line descriptions allowed, which leaves all of my descriptions out!). The program allows for support of CD changers, multiple CD-ROMs online, offline CD roms, and more, all from one copy of CDI. Shareware, or rather, "Lazyware" as the author calls it. CDI is 100% functional Mondays through Thursdays. However, on the weekends, it becomes lazy and refuses to work. Registered versions have no limits at all. Note, the author has updated this program to v.1.10D and now released it as freeware. I'm trying to get a copy of this version to distribute it, but I haven't yet. I'll let you know. DUFTP1_1 is DUftp, v.1.1 by Craig Graham (dated Sept. 24, 1995). This is a GEM based FTP (File Transfer Protocol) program for use with MiNT (Multi-TOS, too) and the MiNT-net networking drivers (by Kay Roemer). You may use DUftp to fetch files from any FTP server on the Internet (or any other TCP/IP based network). You must have MiNT v.1.12 or higher and MiNTNet v.0.70 or higher to use this program. You can use DUftp to fetch files from any FTP server on the Internet (or any other TCP/IP based network). As well as the just transferring files (now with improved directory cacheing to speed up access on remote systems) you get the following extra's: Web-browser style bookmarks for fast access to your fave sites. Automatic logins. Full GEM interface. Runs under MultiTOS or plain GEM (with MiNT installed). Drag & Drop style file transfer (with Gemini or Thing Desktops) Multiple connections at the same time (under MultiTOS). Fast, reliable transfers (code based on the BSD Unix ftp). New progress indicators ("received n of m bytes" and a progress bar). Envy from PC users who have to pay for this sort of thing. AES 4.1 iconify support. No command lines. Integrated with DIP to handle your dial-up SLIP connection for you (simple Connect/Disconnect menu options). Only uses 200K when running. Context sensitive help (using an ST-Guide Hypertext file) DUftp is "advert-ware" for the Data Uncertain's upcoming World Wide Web browser "Distant Earth." Also it is intended to prove that GEM+MiNT can support easy to use networking software, and in particular, that Data Uncertain can provide that software. Docs included. Hensa through Delphi. D_ORACLE is Delphi Oracle v.1.34, originally by Paul Lefebvre and now upgraded and debugged by Bob Semaan of Binary Sounds (date Sept. 21, 1995). Delphi Oracle is a wonderful BackTalk Script for use with Gribnif's STalker 3 telecom program/accessory. Using this allows you to do much of your work offline and save your money to boot! Download files, send and receive mail and forum messages, and more. Docs included. Shareware, with all fees going to Paul rather than Bob. Thanks Bob for improving an already great product! Requires Stalker 3.03 or above. STeno 2.x is a wonderful addition to STalker as well. The original version (1.3) of which Paul released the source code is also included. Docs included. I've registered! EASY_PGP is the Easy PGP shell v.0.23 by Manfred Ssykor (dated May 21, 1995). This shareware program is a GEM-based program which will allow you to use Pretty Good Privacy (I see a mention of v.2.62I in the docs, but probably almost any version will work) to encrypt, decrypt, generate signatures, and more with your data. PGP is one of those "Secure" encryption technologies that our government doesn't allow to be exported (which is rather foolish, as the current version of PGP comes from overseas in the first place!). With PGP no one is going to get into your messages and data unless you want them to! PGP is also a command line based program, which makes it difficult to use for many people. Easy PGP takes care of that! While the Docs are in German, the program is in English, and isn't hard to figure out at all. Online ST Guide Hypertext docs, too. E_MAIL is "The Atari Community E-mail Address Book" Revised as of Nov. 5, 1995 by Dan Mazurowski. This list has been compiled to provide Atarians worldwide with the addresses to contact other members of our ever-changing Atari community. There are 4 distinct sections - user groups, Atari computer contacts, Jaguar and Lynx contacts, and World Wide Web pages. Please note that addresses that are of interest to both Atari computer users AND Jag/Lynx owners will be found in the computer section. It's excellent, and it even lists me in the file (I like his choices!). Obviously, much of this is now out of date, but it's the most current listing I know of. EMOTICON is an alphabetical listing of most acronyms and abbreviations you'll find online (nearly 680!) It's huge, amusing, and sometimes gross! ESSCD64 is ESS-Code v.6.4, the MIME-Encoding/Decoding, UUE/UUDecoding utility (and BTOA, and SHIP files, too) by Michel Forget of Electric Storm Software (the programmer of MasterBrowse, an excellent desktop text SHOW replacement and general file viewer--see MB48_BIN). This file (dated June 9, 1995) will allow you to quickly (very) and easily (it uses GEM with keyboard shortcuts to everything and more) convert binary files to ASCII text files and send them over the Internet or commercial online service to your friends, or return ASCII text files to their original binary state as you have received them. It includes an expanded command line interface for those of you who like such things, and the manual can now be read online. Compatible with TOS 1.0 through MultiTOS (Geneva, too), with online help, and much more. The author has put a lot of work into this program. Color or mono. Shareware (register this and you get an optimized and personalized version of this program, free registered versions of MasterBrowse and his other shareware programs and $5 in coupon discounts from Suzy B's Software!). I can't recommend this utility enough if you encode or decode files from online. It's easy, quick, and very compatible! Support Shareware authors! FEXT_V22 is the Fexthor v.2.2 BBS online game's GFA Basic Source code and data files. Fexthor is best described as a Dungeon's and Dragon's type text adventure game. To use this you much compile it with the GFA Basic compiler and a machine with four megs of RAM. According to the enclosed ad you can now "BASH players who are off-line, as well as on-line! Enjoy The Realistic Experience Of Multi-Player Combat in a HUGE COMPUTERIZED WORLD! Search to Destroy! Hit to Kill! So, Come Brave Adventurers, to Prove Your Bravery and Daring in an Arena Beyond Compare!" This game requires combat skills and magical abilities to survive (at least while you're playing the game, that is). FKLOADER is the Function Key Loader v.1.0 by Jon Emery (dated Sept. 20, 1993). This is a BackTalk script for STalker 3.+. This script will read a data file that tells it what functions to assign to which function keys. I guess I really don't understand what this does as the funtion keys mentioned do not seem to designate the F1-F10 keys on the keyboard, but rather three options that the script presents you with when you run it. But, if you understand what this does, (I should probably read my STalker manual!) then this script will make it easy to load whatever function key settings you wish. Docs and a sample data file are included along with the script itself. FLS300D is the Flash II demo v.3.00 from Missionware Software. As you are probably already aware, Flash II is an awesome telcom program for the Atari ST-Falcon computer line. This demo, while limited (50 minutes per session with an upload/download limit of 50K per file), brings you into the world of modern modeming with a full-featured, high standard, and well-supported program. I can't even begin to list all of Flash II's features (I ried and the file was nearly 4K long!). The things I like best about it are its full multi-tasking ability, its ackground downloading capabilities, its easy auto set-up, its "macros," its full-featured GEM text editors, online picture viewing, and much, much more. Supports all 4 serial ports on the TT and MegaSTE. ST--Falcon compatible. Color or mono. Docs and ordering info included. MIND_15R is the Mindless v.1.5r BBS door for the ST by Andy MacCallum. This fully enabled, registered version (the author has released it) is free for the using. This Door presents you, via ANSI graphics, with multiple games and doors hidden inside an innocent looking grafitti wall! Enter and win (or lose!). You must configure it for the games you have available. Mindless provides you with a "Scrawl Wall", a area for your Ripping Yarns (an endless story door), a Majic Qball (on online prophet--remember what the Old Testament said to do to prophets who aren't 100% right!), a Rumor Mill direct from your computer, Online Bingo, the ability to put words in other people's mouths, and more. Mindless will run on most Atari BBS systems, all it needs to operate is for the BBS to be able to launch external programs and for the BBS to create a standard DORINFO1.DEF file or a custom file with the users handle on the first line (call it Player.Nam). Docs included. QUOTE12 is Quick Quote v.1.2 by Philip Hough. This is a small program that displays a random quote from its database on bootup. It will run from a hard drive or a floppy. You may add or delete quotes from the database as you wish. You can also set up the program to wait for a keypress before it continues booting, or not, as you wish (I like that feature). The quotes included are more in the computer humorous mode than otherwise. Shareware. QUOTER is Ducky's STalker Quoter Script v.1.0 by John Duckworth (date May, 1994). This allows the user to send the contents of the Stalker clipboard to the modem port while reformatting it in quotation style like this... > This is an example of how a quote would appear in a message after > being sent from the QUOTER.BTK. Wonderful when you reply to messages online! I tried it and now I'm hooked! Thanks Ducky! Docs included. Freeware. RJD10 is The Rejoinder v.1.0 by William Wong of Probe House Software (dated March, 1995). The Rejoinder is a fully-functional GEM based Freeware QWK reader (with Hot Keys for most features) for the Atari ST-Falcon range of computers. Here is a listing of it's features... * View and/or reply to up to 5 different mails at any one time. * It can even read your mail aloud if you wish! * Built-in windowed editor with many advanced features. * Configurable tab size and word wrap position. * Size of file being edited up to the limit of your computer RAM. * Cross quote capability - quote from several different emails. * Quoting can include mail author initials at beginning. * Configurable quoting character. * Able to re-edit your already replied mail. * Change your reply mail header anytime. * Display all mails to you in a single window. * Display of all your replies in a single window. * Display mails of interest you you in the HitList window. * Replies will automatically enter your name in the From field, with the To and Subject field automatically filled in. * Private mail reply feature. * Customerise to your favorite archiver. * Advanced filter function - display only mails you want to view. * Twit Filter to filter off mails you don't want to read. * Display NEWS, BULLETIN and NEWFILES files in separate windows. * Randomly selected tagline. * Option to turn off tagline if desired. * Automatic append of signature file to replies. * Option to turn off signature file append if desired. * Replies can have quote header line added. * Option to turn off quote header line. * Auto insertion of To , From Date & Time into quote header lines. * Integrated quote header line, tagline, signature file, Hitlist and Twit list edition. * SpeedoGDOS supported. * External editor spawning capability. * Don't need QWK index files, save on your download time. * Online and context help with ST Guide (not included). Rejoinder can be installed anywhere on your system (even on a floppy!). The program and docs are in English. SCRIBE is the Scribe Backtalk script by Jon Emery. Scribe is a Backtalk script that will record an online session, conference, or anything else that is received by STalker. You can send the Text you receive to your rinter, a disk, or to STeno. Also included is a simple modem intializer that sends a AT&D2&C1&M0 to the modem. Docs included. You must have STalker v.3.x to use this, or any, Backtalk script. STALK304 is the STalker 3.03 to 3.04 patch program from Gribnif. This patch program will only work on the US versions of STalker and requires an original v.3.03 master disk to update. It fixes a minor problem with GDOS font use and selecting blocks of text. Now the menu bar will appear in the normal place when STalker is run as a program in single-TOS. Docs included. Upgrade! Then when you have check out the STALK305 patch program to update to version 3.05! STKRDEMO is the demo version of STalker 3, the telecom program from Gribnif and Strata Software. STalker is a full PC-ANSI/VT-100/VT-52 terminal program which operates in a GEM window, both as a desk accessory (so you can up/download files while doing other things with your computer) and as a stand-alone program. STalker is compatible with all ST-Falcon computers, with any available modem port, with any graphics hardware, and with all multi-tasking systems. This demo allows you to use BalkTalk scripts created using the supplied BalkTalk scripting language. You can write BalkTalk scripts to automate practically anything! STalker requires no external programs to download or upload files. This demo is limited in that you can't save your configuration files or even the files you download (they download, but don't get saved to disk). Uploading is disabled, too. STalker is the terminal program I use all the time, and I recommend this demo to you. Docs included. STKRPATH is a short STalker BackTalk Script by Bob Semaan of Binary Sounds (date Sept. 21, 1995). This script will display all Stalker path settings and allow you to change them. Docs included. This is very nice in that it eliminates your guesswork in which paths are set for which functions. Requires STalker 3.03 or higher to compile the script. WHITEFAQ is a text document that you will receive if you send a message to the White House via the Internet. It's full of information on how to direct your contacts to the various branches of government (including the First Lady!), how to find out information about new laws and regulations, how to download audio files of the President, and more. Interesting! Dated August, 1994). RAYPICS is a series of Raytraced pictures found in one upload by BSUMMER (Barry Summer) on Delphi. Here are the descriptions of those pictures 2MECHS is an excellent JPEG raytrace of two robots. One is humanoid and is aiming a raygun somewhere past where you are sitting, and the other is a huge carrierbot in the background. Behind both is a beautiful picture of a tree and sky at sunset. By Troy Dunnaway. ATTACK is a raytraced view of the "Attack of the SD Intrepid." This shows an X-Wing fighter from "Star Wars" attacking the much larger ST Intrepid (Super Dreadnaught?, Space Destroyer? I can't remember!). The battle rages, blasts burst out, Empire fighters seek to engage, etc. By Anthony Yu. BEHEMOTH is a GIF picture showing a huge fighting spacecraft. It looks like one I'd like to avoid! It reminds me of a space-going Hawk with teeth. Very clean and crisp drawing. BUGSHIP is a beautiful GIF raytraced picture of two alien spaceships flying past a star surrounded by glowing gas and its planet. The ships look like they were modeled on a queen ant with wings when she is flying off to start a new nest. CAR is a JPEG raytraced picture of a futuristic sports car driving along a city street. On the sidewalk is a "Litter" can. The building alongside the road has mirrored windows which reflect the image of the car. Lightpoles cast shadows, etc. DEATHCOM is a raytraced JPEG picture showing a sculpture (or robot) in the shape of a sitting man. The sculpture is really just a skeleton of metal rods and balls. It's "sitting" on something that might be an extension of its body or might beaa chair. It is holding a lollypop extended in its left hand and appears to be contemplating it. FIREHOLE is a raytraced JPEG picture showing an army humanoid robot in a basement-like setting. It appears that it has just crashed through a wall, leaving a wall of fire behind it. It is now firing a machine gun (which in actuality is its right arm) at something off to your left. I wouldn't want to tangle with this robot! FLOAT2 is a raytraced JPED picture showing a surrealistic blend of ancient Egypt and ...something. There is a sphynx in the foreground that isn't really a sphynx. In the bacground is a series of hills that merge with castle-like buildings. In the air above are a group of floating jellyfish-like somethings with stylized faces. It really is quite a pretty picture. FLYBY is a beautiful raytraced JPED picture by Wayne Daigle. It shows two alien fighter planes streaking lengthwise through a valley with cliffs on either side. The planes are well done, but what really attracts my attention is the detail in the valley and canyon walls. FUTURE is a raytraced JPED picture showing a closeup of a sports car of the future. The interesting thing about this is that the artist has included a lot of 50's (and earlier) style in his future car. It's interesting, and plausable! An aircar flies in the midground and a city is in the background. HBATTLE2 is a raytraced JPED picture created by Barry Summer using Apex Media (dated 1995). This picture shows two spaceship circling the Earth (you can see Africa on the globe). The glow of the sun is peeking around the edge of the globe. MAGNUS_7 is a JPEG cartoon picture showing a hugely muscled guy picking up and tossing some robots that are coming after him. Other, police robots are firing on the robots that are attacking the man. Of course, the obligatory beautiful, but wilting, female is in the picture as well. It is titled, Magnus, Robot Fighter. Here are some files from the University of Michigan Atari Archives (via the Internet)... CPP114 is v.1.1.4 of CPP by Scott Bigham (dated March 13, 1995). This is a stand-alone C preprocessor intended for use with C compilers such as HSC which do not provided access to preprocessor output. It implements translation phases 1 through 4 as specified by the standards document ANSI/ISO 9899-1990 describing the C programming language, including trigraphs, token pasting and stringizing. If you are a C programmer I am sure you know what all of this means. I have not a clue, but have taken it from the included manual. EKED_M1 is EKED-M1 : An Editor for the Korg M1/M1R Synthesizers v.1.0 by Steven M. Eker (dated Feb. 19, 1995). This program should run on any ST-Falcon computer, allowing you to manage up to 10 banks at a time (memory permitting). It features an editor window for programs, combinations, global data and drum kits and provides graphical display for envelope shapes. Live editing is available is your Korg M1 is connected and you may drag and drop copy whole banks, programs, combinations, effects and global data. Auditioning of multisound samples is allowed if the Korg M1 is connected and if you have a Korg M1R the program provides you with a virtual keyboard for live editing. There are several other features as well, but since I'm no music man, I really can't tell you much more. Detailed docs included. ST med. or higher resolution required (though it will run in ST low, you just can't read all of the dialog boxes!). GTHOR_2 is v.2.0 of GTHOR, a French language version of Othello for any ST-TT (perhaps Falcon) and a mono monitor by S. Quin and B. de La Boisserie (dated October 20, 1991). This is really quite good, and I was able to figure it out (mostly) even without any significant knowledge of French. It is pretty fast and has piles of options. The program is also freeware, but the authors wouldn't mind you encouraging them with a small amount of cash! French docs included. I just played this again, and I remember that I don't like it all that much...I haven't won yet! MEMSPEED is Memspeed v.1.0 by Torsten Lang (dated Nov. 1994). This program may be the first benchmark for the memory-interface of Atari computers. What does it do? Well, MEMSPEED checks the available bandwidth for reading and writing of the 1st level cache, the 2nd level cache and the mainboard memory. This is done for ST and TT memory areas as far as they are available and if there is enough free mem. On my TT it recognizes the ST and TT RAM (the TT RAM writes are twice as fast as writes to the ST RAM!). This program has neither a GUI nor other special features, just click on TEST and wait for the results to appear. One last thing: This program checks the bandwidth you can really use e.g. a 68030 can access the memory in 2 cycles (non burst) but in reality it does 50MB/s (1st level cache, 50MHz) instead of the awaited 100MB/s. Docs are in German, but there are some English docs included (you've just read most of them). MEDVD2 is the Virus Demon II by The Medway Boys. This program will allow you to check your ST/STE's active memory and floppy disk for virus code and place a protective anti-virus on your bootsector of your floppy disk. The anti-virus causes the screen to flash if everything is OK. If you don't get the flash you're infected. If you run this program and already have a virus in memory it will not return you to the desktop, and will thus force you to reboot (use a different floppy, or no floppy in the disk drive to get a clean system). This doesn't work on my TT. VACCINE is a small program which will check your floppy disk for a boot-sector virus. It will warn you if one is detected and give you the option to quit or to ill the virus. It will also check for virus code in memory. VIRUSKIL is the ST Virus Killer by M.S. Powell (dated Aug. 30, 1988). This program will allow you to check your "A" or B" drive for boot sector viruses. It will tell you if there is executable code in the boot sector of your floppy, indicating a possible virus. The code could be the boot program for a commercial game, so you have to be careful not to erase that! The program also gives you an option to install an anti-virus which will tell you if your disk is virus free each time you boot from it (and it will also check each disk you use afterwards). There are nice docs and a short article about boot sectors included. But...if you really want a good, current, Virus Killer, check out Richard Karsmaker's "The Ultimate Virus Killer." That's the best on the market, IMHO. He has also released his "Th Ultimate Virus Killer Book" on disk as shareware. I have reviews of both of those ...somewhere.... I found the following two demos on the Wildfire Homepage (wherever that is!). They are available in many other locations as well. LIFEBEAT is an STE-only demo by Wildfire entitled, "Life's a Beat." Released in May, 1993, this music and graphics demo presents you with an opening screen of pictures and text. It has an interesting vertical scrolling display that I liked. Hitting the spacebar places you in interstellar space where you get to fly about picking .MOD titles to focus on. When you center in on one and hit the RETURN key that .MOD file is loaded and played. You have normal mode which leaves enough of the processor available to continue scrolling around the starfield while the .MOD is played, or the higher quality option which takes all of the processor time (HELP is high while UNDO is normal). Eleven .MODS are included. WFDENTRO is the Wildfire "dentro" color STE only demo. It requires at least one meg of RAM. It begins with, what is on my STE at least, a riot of colors scrolling to the left. This looks like it is something scrambled, but perhaps it is meant to be that way. Then a waving flag made of points of light is displayed. Then a drawing of a man fades in, though this is never a clear-cut in focus picture. Then a rotating starfield appears and the credits scroll from the foreground into the distance, al la the Star Wars intro. This demo stems from Dec., 1995. And finally, a game that I have no idea from where I got it... HAYWIRE is Haywire by John Hodskinson. This ST-TT game (Falcon?) pits you against eight alien landscapes over which you must capture a bunch of escaped aliens. Your mother ship leaves you off on planet number one and you must fly low to pick up each alien (they look a lot like giant mice) and then fly them back to the mothership. Keep at it until all the aliens are captured on that level. You have to watch out for atmospheric conditions, volcanoes, and more. Watch out that you don't get hit too many times as you can only withstand five impacts. Joystick or keyboard controlled (though the joystick is required on my TT as the key telling the ship to go to the right doesn't work). Haywire is brought to you at 50 frames per second and on a single bit-plane. Docs within the program. This is another one of those "I know I'll do better next time" games. It runs from ST medium or TT medium (but looks to turn the mouse pointer to the ST Low size) and from ST High (though I'm not sure that it will really run from ST High as it seems to change the res. to ST low when run). I guess that's it for this time (22 meg of compressed files--I guess I'm slipping). It's Thursday afternoon, so I have to get this off to Dana ASAP! Take care, and drop me a line to say hello. I'm always glad to get mail! May God Bless, --Michael R. Burkley The Unabashed Atariophile p.s.: You may contact me at MRBURKLEY@DELPHI.COM, MICHAEL-R-BURKLEY@WORLDNET.ATT.NET, or at M.BURKLEY1 on Genie Michael is a former Polyurethane Research Chemist, the co-owner of Suzy B's Software, and currently the Pastor of the Niagara Presbyterian Church Gaming Section Iron Soldier 2!! CDR Use?! Speed Tribes! And more... >From the Editor's Controller - Playin' it like it is! Most of my time this past week has been trying to get some feedback regarding the use of CDR technology with regard to its use in Telegames' soon-to-be-released "Iron Soldier 2". Something seemed "odd" when there was so much discussion on the topic and Telegames' decision to go with it; I had to ask. I got in touch with a few people and asked them for their impressions, including their reactions to the Telegames announcement and a few posting on Usenet. The comments that I was trying to solicit are meant to be informative and should be viewed as such. All of the private correspondence that I received will remain anonymous due to the correspondents' current and past positions within the industry. Personally speaking, I believe that people are going to buy this game, and future ones if available, on any media. People want to play new games on their Jaguars whether it be CDR, eproms, unboxed, or whatever. But, as I've been told and mention below, there are some potential disadvantages. We feel that you should hear about them in case you want to make an educated purchase rather than an emotional one. Until next time... Industry News STR Game Console NewsFile - The Latest Gaming News! THQ to Launch "Speed Tribes" for Sony PlayStation, PC CALABASAS, CALIF. (April 22) BUSINESS WIRE -April 22, 1997--THQ Inc. (NASDAQ/NMS:THQI) Tuesday announced that it has signed an agreement with Nemicron, an original content developer, to publish and distribute "Speed Tribes" for the Sony PlayStation and PC CD-ROM platforms. The games are scheduled to be released in the United States the first half of 1998. "Speed Tribes" combines real-time 3-D with strategy elements in a game that propels players into the dangerous domain of heavily armed aercycle riders who are dedicated to the speed of their machines, violence and the glory of survival. Both THQ and Nemicron are currently in negotiations for the further development and marketing of "Speed Tribes" as a comic book, television series, theatrical release and toy line. "We are thrilled to be teaming up with a company like Nemicron whose 'Speed Tribes' property was the hit of last summer's Comicon, one of the largest comic book trade shows, worldwide," said Steve Ryno, THQ vice resident of product development. "Nemicron's unique content combined with THQ's extensive videogame publishing experience is a perfect match to create a winning, hard-core game title for the large installed base of 32-bit and computer systems." "Nemicron is pleased to have found an ally in THQ," explained Mark Alamares, Nemicron's chief executive officer. "Both companies have forged a strong working relationship, primarily because THQ has demonstrated not only marketing and distribution strength worldwide, but a firm commitment to the development of original content for both individual platform play, as well as Internet multi-player gaming." Alamares continued, "We share the same philosophy -- to develop and produce entertaining hybrids of pop culture and technology for the global marketplace." Jaguar Online STR InfoFile - Online Users Growl & Purr! JAGUAR NEWS FLASH From: Songbird <email@example.com> Date: 19 Apr 1997 Have you been waiting anxiously for some new Jaguar games -- ANY new Jaguar games -- to be published? Would you like the opportunity to own a limited release Jaguar game? What would you say if, as an added bonus, the game supported up to EIGHT Jaguars networked together? Coming soon... *** AIRCARS *** Check out: http://www.millcomm.com/~forhan/aircars.html for more details. This is not a vaporware announcement! Carl Forhan firstname.lastname@example.org >From the Usenet and miscellaneous correspondence from private e-mail (permission granted to re-print by the authors), here's some information regarding Telegames' use of CDR technology with regard to Iron Soldier 2. >>The latest date is April 29th...apparently they have resorted >>to pressing the disc in Germany (home of Eclipse) for some reason. > >Correct! > >Marc Rosocha/Eclipse Software produces all Iron Soldier 2 CDs himself. So does that mean that the disks are going to be CDRs? If so, I'm not buying it. CDRs degrade over time and become useless. From my research a CDR can become unusable in as little as 6 months depending on the environment it is stored in and how often it is used. [Editor's note:] I asked a few people about CDR technology because I really had no idea what the difference was between CDR and what I interpret as a "normal" CD. My first question was to ask what a CDR was! <g> > D'uh!! I should have realized it, but I didn't consider the > possibility of it being recordable. Why would a publisher consider > this possibility; wouldn't it be possible for someone to overwrite > the data? No problem. I miss the meaning of acronyms a lot myself. ;-) One reason is money. Although CDRs are kind of expensive, pressing normal CDs is more expensive until you pass a certain number of units. If you don't think you are going to pass that number, and you want to keep price down, you can go with CDRs. Personally I would never buy any software on a CDR due to the reliability/longevity problems with them. Another reason is if you don't know how well your product will sell, and you think it may be at or below the price difference crossover and you don't want to wind up sitting on unsold inventory. No, you can't overwrite the data on a CDR. They are write once only. I don't know of any software that will let you even try to modify data already written to a CDR. If a disk is not closed after the last session is created, though, you can add on to the end of the disk, which would be BAD on a Jaguar CD. It would no longer pass encryption if you did that. > Yeah, that would kinda suck. Yes, it would. Spend $60+ on a game only to have it go bad and become unusable after 6 months (under bad conditions) to 5 years (never using it and storing it away in a dark, dry environment). No thanks, I'll pass. > In an announcement on Telegames' web site, it appears that IS2 will be > coming out on CDR. I'd like to do an article on the possibilities of > this game CD going bad after awhile, for STR. Can you give me some > pluses and minuses that I can print? I'd like to give our readers > some background on this media so they know > what they're likely getting. Thanks. Sigh, I was worried about that based on [a] message on the newsgroup. For a consumer there aren't any plusses to CDR that I can think of, other than the gold disks look cool compared to a pressed silver disk. The only real minus is that the disks go bad over time, and not due to misuse. Since you use light to create the disks (a laser), exposure to light causes them to degrade. Well, reading a CD uses light (a laser), so you are exposing it to light, which degrades the information stored on the disk, so just by playing the game, you are destroying it. As I've said in other messages, I've read information that CDRs can last as little as 6 months if they are not stored properly (left sitting out exposed to light all the time) or as long as 5 years if they are stored in a dark, dry location (in other words, not used unless absolutely necessary). This information on longevity, btw, comes from one of the CDROM developers forum on CompuServe. I don't remember which one off hand since I read about it almost 2 years ago while I was still at [edited]. I'm sure they have information on this in their libraries somewhere, and if not, there was an almost continuous conversation going on in there about the subject. >From another message thread: Telegames says, "Although Atari's "officially" licensed replicator has had the gold masters of IS2 since February 20th, they have been unable to create problem free glass masters that are required for mass production. Their problems are partly related to the sophisticated security encription on the Jag CDs." "We have come to the conclusion that the only way to make Iron Soldier 2 available is to program the product on CD-R media rather than mass replicate CDs. We have already undertaken this expensive and time consuming solution and project that sufficient quantities should be available for release by April 29th. Since this method of production costs even more than cartridge manufacturing, we are only making a quantity that is estimated to cover initial demand." So I write, Hmmm, I used to work for (and personally handled the roll out of all the CD pack in's, the Readysoft titles, Battlemorph and Primal Rage) one of the "officially" licensed replicator's and still know a few people there. Hey Telegames, why not give KAO Infosystems a call and see if they can work out the encryption? I remember a hard time with the Battlemorph CD and it worked out fine. And since the cost of CD-R producing is "even more than a cart" and you were still able to keep the msrp of $60, if KAO comes through for us and is able to reproduce, I'm sure you'll pass the savings onto the consumer. Telegames, I have contact names and phone numbers at KAO and am willing to help. Last time I posted about the inflated cost of Telegames titles (CD vs. cart) I got numerous flames about "Hey, they're 'helping' out the Jag community so chill out". Well, this time I'm trying to help out the Jag community. I have contacts at one of Atari's "officially" licensed replicators who would be more than happy to get the business, no matter what the quantity. If it gets done, I'm sure since Telegames is "helping us out" they would be more than happy to reduce the MSRP... Tony And a continuation: Chris Knape wrote: > I just read this on Telegames web site and frankly can't believe it. > Wonder how or if they'll do World Tour Racing: > > Iron Soldier 2 Resolved > > The projected release date of Iron Soldier 2 (CD) for Jaguar had been > delayed due to > a CD replication problem. Although Atari's "officially" licensed > replicator has had > the gold masters of IS2 since February 20th, they have been unable to > create > problem free glass masters that are required for mass production. Their > problems > are partly related to the sophisticated security encription on the Jag > CDs. The encryption excuse is extremely lame. The *few* ex-Atari employees that are now working at JTS (namely John Skrutch), primarily for managing legal rights and Atari properties, all say that the encryption is not an issue for any Jaguar games that have yet to be released. JTS is "willing to provide" software encryption/protection keys for Jaguar games that are to be released through licensed Jaguar publishers. I think it comes down to one possible scenario... When JTS says that they are "willing to provide," they mean for a 'small' fee. Now either the fee isn't so 'small' and it's not worth Telegames paying it or it is a trivial sum and Telegames is too cheap because they think that only a few hundred copies will sell, uh, which is probably right. > We have come to the conclusion that the only way to make Iron Soldier 2 > available is > to program the product on CD-R media rather than mass replicate CDs. We > have > already undertaken this expensive and time consuming solution and > project that > sufficient quantities should be available for release by April 29th. This makes no sense at all! If they can make a CDR image of the disc, then they can for sure make a final production master. I'm willing to bet this is a cover up for, "Send us your money and we'll burn copies as needed." It's cheaper to burn a copy here and a copy there as needed up to a few hundred copies than it would be to produce a production master and running off $1,000+ copies only to sell 300 of them over the next 1.5 years. > Since this > method of production costs even more than cartridge manufacturing, we > are only > making a quantity that is estimated to cover initial demand. More expensive than cart production? I wonder how they figure that... Let's see, blank CDR media in bulk lots of 1,000 can be purchased for nearly $3.00 per piece. Let's see, if they have a CDR duplicator which can burn about 30 CD's per hour (costs about (US)$8,500) and time and effort costs an additional $2.00 per disc... Then they're at $13,500 to produce 1,000 copies. That's $13.50 per disc, plus packaging (jewl case, instruction insert) for another $3.50, that's $17.00 per copy. Not bad, really and I'm willing to bet that the CDR duplicator has been in their posetion for other purposes and for far longer, thus dropping about $5.00 (or more) off that final $17/copy price tag. So it looks to be about the same price as cart development and potentially a bit cheaper. Even if they silk-screen labeled the CDR's, that would still only add another $1.00 per disc cost. That leaves a pretty hefty profit margin there and you know they're not going to spend a dime on advertising or promoting it. Well, maybe a few flyers sent to key retailers. > Accordingly, we would > encourage you to order your copy from your local Atari dealer, or > Electronics > Boutique, or directly from Telegames as soon as possible to ensure that > you are able > to get the best product ever released for Jaguar. Yup, better hurry before they put their CDR duplicator to 'better use' after the first 300 copies are burned. BTW: My price figure on the CD replicator unit above was EXTREMELY inflated. Just flipping through the back pages of Computer Shopper magazine as revealed a couple that can burn 16 CD's at 2X speed simultaneously for under $6,800. Cheers, Jeff [at Dark Science] ONLINE WEEKLY STReport OnLine The wires are a hummin'! PEOPLE... ARE TALKING On CompuServe Compiled by Joe Mirando email@example.com Hidi ho friends and neighbors. Well, there is STILL no joy in Mudville tonight where my internet setup is concerned. MiNTnet and CAB are still giving me fits and I don't know why. One thing is for sure: I'm learning a lot more about the internet than I would have if I had simply popped in a floppy or CDRom and hit 'Setup". For folks who don't care about how the internet works but want access to all of the information it offers, that's a good option to have. But if you're like me and NEED to know how and why things work, simply installing a program or two doesn't do it for you. Do I continue to use my Atari simply so I'll have to do battle every time I want to access the latest and greatest features of the computing world? No, that would just be stupid. The fact is that, with a little research, thought, and trial and error, my MegaSTE can do just about anything I want it to. So I'll keep on playing with settings, searching out arcane tomes on both the internet and the ST, and asking lots of questions of those who know more than I do about both. Well, let's get on with the reason for this column in the first place... all the great news, hints, tips, and info available every week right here on CompuServe. From the Atari Computing Forums At the top of our message sheet today is a continuing conversation about file descriptions being posted in english while the actual program or file is actually in another language. Having seen this happen on occasion, I post: "No one seems to be saying "keep the 'foreign' language programs and files out of here", only "give us some warning about whether or not some of us will be able to make sense of it". I too have on occasion downloaded a file that sounded great, only to find out that I couldn't read the documentation or menus. On the reverse side, when I upload a file or program, I don't usually put 'english language' in the description, so I'm guilty too. It's far too easy to forget things like that when you find a great program that you want to share with people here." Myles Cohen tells me: "As you might remember, Joe...I also belong to the PSION forum...and they also have German...French...etc...contributors.... But the program descriptions are always uploaded in their respective languages or are described in English with a warning that there is no English translation... What I'm getting at is that when you said, ". . . so I'm guilty too. " you were not guilty at all...If the description is in English...it is automatically assumed that the rest of the program will be too...No special note need be made to that effect... On the other hand...I have also seen programs described in English that also have a note that there are French and German versions enclosed... BOTTOM LINE: If the description is in English and there is no English in the program...then that description should say so..." Douglas Erickson posts: "I have a 520ST. I heard once you can add a meg of memory to this unit by buying some accessory. Does anyone know what that accessory is and where I could buy one?" Bob Matiska tells Doug: "The early Atari ST's could be upgraded to as much as 4 meg, either by soldering parts to the motherboard or by plugging in an upgrade board. A 520ST that our club's BBS was using had 16 RAM chips piggybacked onto the existing 16, most of the legs soldered together and some jumper wires soldered here and there. A mess and not something for the squeamish. Another 520 we used before that had some kind of an upgrade that had the 16 RAM chips on a long board with a connector pushed onto one of the existing RAM chips. It gave 2.5 megs and would work fine until the connection oxidized. Then the connector had to be reseated and it would work again for a while. Other upgrades came and went, which brings us to the present. The only upgrade I've seen for a while has been from the XtraRam people in England. Toad Computers used to sell it and still may, but I just visited their web site and was shocked at the lack of Atari hardware and software listed. You can call them at 1-800-448-8623 to order it or call their info line at 410-544-6943 if you just want to see what your options are. Or send email through the net to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Also check out System Solutions' web site at ssolution.com for info about the upgrade. You could order it from them. The Toad price is $79 without the necessary 1 meg simms, which you could probably get from a local seller rather than paying their somewhat high price." On the subject of CAB (Crystal Atari Browser), Jondahl Davis asks: "Is there anything special about the setup of CAB for the '030? I,m using the RSC from CAB 1.5. The RSC and OVL files are in the same folder as CAB. Ackerman sent me a message saying it might be the direction of the slashes in the URL. I very much doubt that, but I'll give it a try. It's good to know somebody got it to work." Joe Villarreal tells Jondahl: "The '030' version of Cab 1.5 is optimized for the TT and Falcon. It's faster on my TT than the normal version. The setup is exactly the same for both versions. I've found a file somewhere on the Internet that mentions Stik2. It will have support for PPP. So, maybe a connection to the internet using Stik and Cab will be possible on CompuServe." Jondahl tells Joe: "Thanks for the good news. I've been hoping for an update to STik. I'm using it on Homenet with a SLIP connection,but it would probably be better to use PPP. Do you use Newsie? I'm having some problems on Usenet;it's probably file corruption on the server rather than the reader. Some files stop loading before the whole message comes in. The next thing I read is always the rest of the previous message. After that,all messages are the last half of other messages. The only way to get messages after that is to log off,exit and restart the program. The Newsgroup overviews are never the same length twice. I can read the overview of a group 4 times and it's different every time. Netscape can't download those funny files, either. Joe tells Jondahl: "I'm using a SLIP connection also, using Sprintnet to connect to Delphi.com. I've tried Newsie somewhat and it seems to work OK. I don't get corrupt files. The problem I have is that I seem to download some of the same Usenet messages that I read and deleted in my previous connection. This might be my fault since I haven't read the docs completely." In the world of MIDI music, Craig Barnes asks: "Can anyone tell me what is required to remove the bass boost circuit on the Falcon audio output." Frank Heller tells Craig that it's... "More work than you could possibly believe. Definately not worth the effort. Roll off the bottom 3-5dB @100Hz when you pass it out into your mixer. If you make a mistake there aint no more spare parts." Gary Partington asks for help with his new DTP program: "I have purchased a copy of Pagestream and Timeworks but have never used a DTP before and I am having a few problems First problem is the lack of any docs whatsoever Pagestream seems easier to use but when I try and import text it either locks up or seems to accept the loabut then I can't find any text to work with! Graphics load OK but I am spending a lot of time getting nowhere. Can anyone give me a quick guide to getting started with a DTP?" Rick Detlefsen tells Gary: "I'm using Pagestream 2.2SE, and it comes with a manual. To import Text you need the Text function selected, choose a file, then paste it where you want it. You may need to choose a font/ size. I do not use the postscript type 1 fonts as PS always locks up when I do." Well folks, I know this has been a short visit, but the rest of the stuff on CompuServe this week was a bit lame. There was one interesting thread about freedom of speech versus protection for the youth of America, but it's far too long and involved to go into here. I would like to state my opinions here though, and since you are free to either read on or not, here I go <grin>... The theory goes that, since the internet makes access to pornography so easy, it must be a threat to our children. Actually, I have no children, so I'll use yours as an example, okay? First of all, pornography has been with us since the first Sumarian artisan decided to mold a clay bowl into the shape of a woman. Literally thousands of generations have come and gone and this influence is still with us. True, civilizations have risen and fallen throughout the ages, but I believe that is the natural way of things. Second, it is still the parent that should decide what is acceptable, not society the state or national government and certainly not popular opinion. Easy access to pornography does not necessarily mean that a child will instantly be turned into a raving sex fiend, drug user, or psychopath. What it does mean is that parents need to take control of what children do. This is not society's job, and I surely do not want to see it decided by something as ethically challenged as government. The very fact that some see pornography as art while others see it as depravity is the basis of freedom of speech. No, the Founding Fathers probably never envisioned today's pornography and its accessibility, but that is irrelevant. While a lot of pornography is garbage, it has the constitutional right to be garbage. You are free to view it or not, and to allow or prohibit your children from doing the same, but let's not give up yet another one of our responsibilities to the state. Child rearing has always been hard. It's just that now we have a government that is more and more willing to 'help' us with our responsibilities. Nancy Reagan would probably be upset at my quoting her in this way, but "just say no!" Well, I'll step off of the old soapbox for now. Be sure to tune in again next week, same time, same station, and be ready to listen to what they are saying when... PEOPLE ARE TALKING EDITORIAL QUICKIES Favorite Acronyms PCMCIA => People Can't Memorize Computer Industry Acronyms ISDN => It Still Does Nothing APPLE => Arrogance Produces Profit-Losing Entity IBM => I Blame Microsoft DEC => Do Expect Cuts CA => Constant Acquisitions CD-ROM => Consumer Device, Rendered Obsolete in Months OS/2 => Obsolete Soon, Too. 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STR, CPU, STReport, are trademarks of STReport and STR Publishing Inc. STR, CPU, STReport, its staff and contributors are not and cannot be held responsible in any way for the use or misuse of information contained herein or the results obtained therefrom. STReport "YOUR INDEPENDENT NEWS SOURCE" April 25, 1997 Since 1987 Copyrightc1997 All Rights Reserved Issue No. 1317
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