Z*Net: 22-Jun-90 #525From: Len Stys (aa399@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 06/23/90-03:22:14 AM Z
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From: aa399@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Len Stys) Subject: Z*Net: 22-Jun-90 #525 Date: Sat Jun 23 03:22:14 1990 ======================================================================= ////// // // ////// ////// Z*Net Atari Online Magazine // / /// // // // --------------------------- // /// // // // ////// // JUNE 22, 1990 // / // /// // // --------------------------- ////// // // /////// // Issue #525 ======================================================================= (=) 1990 by Rovac Industries, Inc. Post Office Box 59 Middlesex, New Jersey 08846 Z*Net Online BBS: (201) 968-8148 ======================================================================= CompuServe 71777,2140 GEnie Z-NET ======================================================================= =============================== CONTENTS =============================== THIS WEEK......................................Ron Kovacs and John Nagy Z*NET NEWSWIRE......................................................... MACINTOSH VIRUSES.....................................Kristofer H. Cruz NEW HEADQUARTERS BBS.........................................Ron Kovacs TOP 20 GAMES IN THE UK.......................................Jon Clarke CHEAP DISK STORAGE.......................................Jere W. Frazer PD/SHAREWARE STOP............................................Mark Quinn ATARI TT WORKSTATION................................................... ST JOURNAL MAGAZINE REVIEWED................................John Strand =============================== THIS WEEK =============================== by Ron Kovacs and John Nagy DOWNLOAD PUMPING: A POSTSCRIPT In issue #19, 5/11/90, Z*Net made charges of download falsification ("pumping") on GEnie telecommunication service. In an editorial, we presented evidence that led us to conclude that some party was deliberately inflating the online magazine file access counts on that system, sometime of one, and sometimes of both major magazines. Since that editorial, there has been a flurry of comments from readers, system administrators, and other magazines, variously agreeing or disagreeing or even accusing Z*Net of inventing the matter either to cover up our own dishonest actions or to try to avoid admitting to having less popularity than other magazines. Fortunately, time has provided additional perspective on the matter. During the week after June 25, GEnie administrators posted messages saying that they had been monitoring downloads, and that "neither magazine" was discovered to be altering the counts at that time. However, they also said that they did discover and talk to a user who was found to be deliberately pumping the magazines. Details have not been released as to whom it was or what the degree of pumping might have been. More recently, here are a few messages from GEnie on the subject, posted just this week: ------------ Category 26, Topic 2 Message 389 Wed Jun 20, 1990 M.MEZAROS at 00:58 EDT [Edited] ...Ralph/John/Ron, I'm glad to see that the d/l number controversy has cured itself. It seems to me that the numbers haven't changed much, so the people doing the "pumping" are still at it. But at least all the readers now know that the d/l numbers are not to be taken as the gospel. ///Mike ------------ Category 26, Topic 2 Message 390 Wed Jun 20, 1990 NHARRIS [Neil] at 11:07 EDT On the contrary -- we've been keeping track of who downloads the issues, and we believe there is not currently any tampering being done with the download counts. ------------ Category 26, Topic 2 Message 391 Wed Jun 20, 1990 STACE [Mark] at 18:19 EDT Wow !! Maybe that explains why Z*Net is now proving to be more "popular" ...just as I suspected that it always should have. Thanks Neil! Mark *********************** These messages are reprinted from GEnie. Neil Harris is a senior administrator at GEnie. In fact, the access numbers have changed SIGNIFICANTLY since the matter was discussed openly. Both Z*Net and ST-Report have had their average counts drop measurably. Numbers here (as of 6/21/90) are split into those from 1990 before the controversy was brought forward, and those since GEnie announced that they are monitoring: Z*NET ST-REPORT AVERAGE COUNTS BEFORE ISSUE #19 589.8 639.1 AVERAGE COUNTS AFTER ISSUE #21 517.0 476.3 DIFFERENCE IN AVERAGE COUNTS -72.8 -162.8 PERCENTAGE OF DROP -12.4% -25.1% It should also be noted that ST-REPORT has logged the lowest access numbers that it has had in the last 15 months, and has had them for three weeks running in these three weeks since GEnie has monitored the file accesses. ZNet applauds GEnie for having taken the matter of download falsification seriously enough to monitor the numbers and announce their actions. We are pleased to hear that, for now at least, we can believe the access numbers on GEnie, and that they confirm (again, for now at least) what we have thought all along - that Z*NET is your first choice in Atari Online Magazines. =============================== Z*NET NEWSWIRE =============================== PORTFOLIO MEMORY EXPANDER AND "DISK DRIVE" AVAILABLE Dealers have been showing and selling the 256K RAM expander for the Portfolio computer. Priced between $200 and $300, the unit substantially increases the size of the palm-top computer, plugging in on the end of the machine like a triple-sized serial adapter. It also has a card slot, allowing the use of expanded "internal" RAM memory AND a pair of memory cards all at once. Also now available is the IBM compatible "card reader" device that makes the Portfolio memory cards look like a disk to the computer for ease of file transfers. However, the card reader is ONLY for IBM compatible computers and CANNOT be used on a ST, even in an IBM emulation mode. Included with the reader unit itself (which many Atari owners will find looks frighteningly like an old XM-301 300 baud Atari Modem) is an IBM internal card, which must be mounted in a "real" IBM or clone. Sorry, but we know of no plans for an ST compatible reader. ATARI INTRODUCES AN EDUCATIONAL PC NETWORK Atari's MSDOS computers allow students to interact with the computer in a classroom setting. This state of the art system allows teachers to provide resource and presentation material through the network. It's like having and interactive color blackboard for each student. The network, called Atari gemNet, has been approved for Ontario schools by the Ministry of Education. NEW SOFTWARE FOR PORTFOLIO New software packages include a micro-bookeeper, which puts the accounting power of a full sized computer in the palm of your hands - perfect for small businessmen. The TimeKeeper for Portfolio takes charge of the tedious bookeeping and keeps track of billing and helps prepare time-sheets. With Transport Logger, truck drivers can quickly and conveniently keep their driving logs. ICD MAKES NEW SUPERCHARGER-COMPATIBLE SOFTWARE While owners of the SUPERCHARGER IBM emulator from TALON have been able to use their units with ICD hard drives for several months now, ICD has released a new software set that makes it easier. "This current release includes full software support for the Supercharger PC emulator," says a DOC file included with the new drivers, available only on the major telecommunication systems and ICD's own BBS. Operationally, the user tells the software ONCE which ID number the SUPERCHARGER is using, and then all ICD programs will not do any SCSI commands on this ID. "This means that you need no longer hold down the reset button when booting the computer with the Supercharger attached. You must also disable write cacheing when running the Supercharger, otherwise you will never write to your hard disk." You can set up your booter to disable write cacheing, or permanently enable write cacheing and turn it off temporarily with the DESKTOP.ACC or with the CACHEOFF.PRG, included in the new software. There is also a CACHEON.PRG to turn the cacheing back on. "Please note that the Supercharger is fully compatible with OLD ICD Host Adapters. It is NOT compatible with early release versions of the ICD Advantage and Advantage Plus host adapters. In addition to the software you will need a hardware upgrade kit which replaces one of the GAL chips on the Advantage and Advantage Plus boards. The cost for this upgrade kit is $15.00." ICD Advantage ST Upgrade Offer, 1220 Rock St., Rockford, IL 61101. "Note that Advantage and Advantage Plus host adapters shipped from ICD after the date of this file will have hardware upgrades in place to be compatible with the Supercharger." STE MAKES IT INTO U.S. STORES - WITH BUGGED TOS Dealers across the USA received their first shipments of the long awaited STE computers this week. They appear to be available in good quantity, and are selling quickly for prices between $600 and $700. However, the STE computers Z*NET tested at Los Angeles dealers still has the "buggy" TOS version 1.6, while the promised version 1.62 is not to be found. The major problem with 1.6 seems to be the inability to use most (or possibly any) existing hard drive with the STE... it just won't find it. Other tell-tale signs of TOS 1.6 is the inability to boot the computer into MEDIUM resolution, regardless of the settings saved in the desktop information file. Many prospective buyers we talked to about the STE are not put off by the lack of the newer TOS, and it is expected that the replacement TOS 1.62 will be made available for early STE buyers once it is in sufficient supply. TWEETY BOARD Z*NET SPECIAL CONTINUES A super SUMMER SPECIAL is being offered through Z*NET from PRACTICAL SOLUTIONS. For only $29.95, just HALF the regular price of $59.95, you can get the remarkable TWEETY BOARD stereo sound adaptor for the ST and MEGA computers. This unit mounts easily inside the ST on the sound chip, and separates the three distinct and separately programmed sound channels into three high fidelity outputs. Plug into your stereo system for sound far superior to what you are used to coming through the single 3 inch speaker in your monitor. It really does sound three dimensional, and the clarity is astounding. Call PRACTICAL SOLUTIONS and ask for the Z*NET TWEETY BOARD SPECIAL. PS, 1135 North Jones Blvd., Tucson, AZ 85716, phone at 602-322-6100. NEW PHONE SERVICE FOR HEARING IMPAIRED Michigan Bell will provide the personnel and Facilities for a new service that will bring quality telecommunications services to the hearing and speech impaired statewide. The relay service expands the usefulness of the Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf (TDDs), instruments with a small screen and keyboard on which messages are typed, then sent over telephone lines. Currently, hearing and speech impaired customers can use the TDD to converse over the phone only with someone else who is using a TDD. With the new service, customers using a TDD will call a statewide 800 telephone number to reach an operator in a relay center. The operator reads the typed message to the called party, and in turn types that person's spoken reply into the TDD. The system works in reverse for persons calling a hearing- or speech- impaired person. It is projected that in its third year of operation, the system will handle at least 100,000 calls a month. Users will incur no additional charges using the relay system; only the normal local or toll charges based on the calling and called numbers will apply. It is expected the majority of calls will be local and involve no toll charges. More then half a million people in Michigan stand to benefit from the system, according to the Michigan Association of Deaf, Hearing and Speech Services, which estimates as many as 600,000 Michigan citizens are hearing and speech impaired. "Thousands of people in this state can't use the telephone or routine things like keeping in touch with friends, conducting business or calling for help. The relay system is going to change that," said Mark Doman, General Manager-public markets. "We also are creating 100 new jobs at Michigan Bell as a result." TOS 2.0 or TOS 3.0? Last week, Z*Net made mention that Atari had denied having plans to make major modifications to the TOS operating system version that was presently powering the TT 68030 computer. We had reported that at the recent Toronto show, Derek Mihocka had been told by a Canadian Atari representative that the "TOS 030" was much slower than the eventual "TOS 2.0" that would be in the final production TT. Derek got back to us since that issue was distributed with additional information. Specifically, Derek was told by a member of the technical development department at Atari Canada that TOS 030, which shows up as TOS 3.0 when checked by QUICK INDEX or other version-checking software, is compiled from the "C" source code using a 68000 based compiler. The representative stated that once ALCYON C for the 68030 was available, the code would be optimized for the 68030 and recompiled, and that the resulting code would be significantly faster when run on the chip it was compiled for. Derek concurs in that conclusion, and plans to also optimize his QUICK ST screen speedup program for the TT. At the Toronto show, Derek was able to do a port-over of QUICK ST for the TT. Derek explains, "The results were that Quick ST on the TT sped up graphics operations by the same factor as on any other ST. i.e., GEM redraws are about 300% faster that the regular TT with cache on, 5 times faster that the STE or a Mega ST, and 9 times faster than a blitterless ST. Screen scrolling was 4 times faster than an ST, and the text benchmarks were up to 46 times faster than the TT. In other words, instead of offering graphics and text performance of less than 100% faster than the STE, Quick ST running on the TT offers about 5 times the performance of the STE. Now, getting back to TOS 2.0, if Atari is seriously not going to optimize TOS 3.0 for the 68030 and make up for the fact that they omitted the blitter from the TT, then all I can say is... ...how can you ship a "graphics workstation" and provide the very minimal graphics support? Once Quick ST is optimized for the 68030, the numbers will improve (considerably I hope). I expect at least 10 times the graphics performance of an ST." TURBO ST, VERSION 1.82 ENHANCEMENTS (1) When drawing expanding zoom boxes with dotted lines, the blitter is no longer used if it is present. As it turns out, our 68000 code was faster. (2) The code to display VDI text was rewritten to save space. In addition, a new faster algorithm to display non-byte aligned text on monochrome and Moniterm monitors was used. (3) Several other minor improvements were made to either save space or improve the speed of VDI calls. CORRECTIONS =========== The following corrections have been made to Turbo ST, since the 1.8 release on March 25, 1990. (1) Text in low and medium resolution is now clipped correctly to the right hand edge under all circumstances (fixed 3/29/90). (2) The screen will no longer get dimmer when the Atari control panel is used with Turbo ST on color monitors (fixed 4/5/90). (3) The Hippo Disk Utilities, which sometimes passed invalid character codes, will no longer crash with Turbo ST. (4) The public domain SELECTRC program, which allows foreign characters to be displayed when using an english keyboard, now works correctly with Turbo ST. (5) Transparent colored text on a colored background, as used primarily by TRACKER-ST, will now always be displayed correctly. (6) When zooming in with DEGAS on a monochrome monitor, the fill colors will now always be correct. (7) Key presses will no longer disappear from the keyboard buffer, when a program makes a GEMDOS call to display characters. This had the potential to affect PHASAR and some unix like shells. (8) The THUNDER spelling checker should work again with Turbo ST (the 1.8 release broke it). One beta tester, however still reports problems. (9) Very large circles on the Moniterm monitor are now drawn correctly. (10) A few other minor changes were made to either better mimic the behavior of TOS or protect against potential errors. APPLETALK NETWORKING Apple announced this week a program that will make it easier for developers to offer the Macintosh computer's interface when providing networking services. AppleTalk is a set of local-area networking protocols built into every Macintosh and used for connecting Apple and other manufacturer's computers with each other and with shared resources. The AppleTalk Licensing Program makes it easier for mainframe and pc manufacturers to offer network services that are compatible with Macintosh pc's networked today. This program is part of Apple's goal to extend AppleTalk to all computer environments. NYNEX AND APPLE At the recent PC Expo (held this week) NYNEX and Apple unveiled the first commercial installations of both electronic and print advertising media produced on Macintosh computers, using one production staff. DISMISSAL OF APPLE FRAUD SUIT The Supreme Court this week let stand a ruling that dismissed a stockholder lawsuit alleging securities fraud by Apple and its top officers for making misleading, optimistic statements before it introduced its Lisa computer in 1983. The justices declined to review a federal appeals court ruling that there was no evidence that Apple and its officers did not believe the statements were accurate. MOTOROLA RECEIVES STAY Motorola stated this week that it had been granted a temporary stay by Judge Howard T. Markey of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C. Under the terms of the stay, Motorola will file its formal appeal to the court no later than Friday, June 22. In the meantime, the company indicated that it is continuing its negotiations to settle its dispute with Hitachi. ACCLAIM AND NINTENDO Acclaim has entered into an agreement with Nintendo who will become the publisher of two Acclaim Game Boy titles in Europe. Acclaim's Kwirk and Wizards & Warriors X: Fortress of Fear for the Game Boy compact video system will be marketed by Nintendo in Europe under the Nintendo brand name. MICROSOFT MOUSE Microsoft announced the availability of a new Mouse package. The new package is identical to other Microsoft Mouse packages except that it provides no application software. The Mouse package has a suggested retail price of $125. MCI NEW LD SERVICE MCI unveiled a long distance service aimed specifically at an $18 billion business market. MCI Vision is designed to provide small and mid-size businesses with features and capabilities that have traditionally been available only to the largest national firms. It offers customers a menu of long distance features that can be tailored to their business, new billing and management aids and broad volume discounts based on combined long distance usage for all of a company's calling -- all at prices based upon a flat per-minute rate, regardless of the distance or volume of calls. MCI customers can sign up for MCI Vision now, with service beginning in mid-July. 50 MILLIONTH PLAYER Nintendo added its 50 millionth player to the growing list of home video game enthusiasts earlier this week. In addition, sales of the Nintendo Entertainment System continue to be strong. Nintendo will satisfy player demand with 80 new games for the second half of 1990; providing annual sales projections of 70 million NES game paks. COMPACT DISC WITH LARGE MEMORY Nippon Columbia Co of Japan said this week it has developed a compact disc that can store four times as much information as a conventional CD of the same size. The new disc measures 3.14 inches in diameter, and can hold 80 minutes of music, almost as much as a standard 4.72 inch CD. Originally developed to record music, the disc can also be used to store other data. The company expects to start selling the new disc in two or three years, after new CD players are developed. The disc cannot be used on conventional CD players. PC EXPO The Eighth Annual PC EXPO exceeded 65,000, a record crowd for the spring event for corporate volume buyers and resellers of computer products and services. Show officials also reported that exhibitor re-sign for space in 1991 has exceeded expectations, resulting in PC EXPO expanding into two additional halls at the Javits Center in New York. More than 150,000 net square feet was sold, generating over $5 million in sales revenue in three days for next year's Ninth Annual PC EXPO in New York, June 25-27. More than 200 new products were introduced at the 1990 PC EXPO. WordPerfect, Apple Computer, Intel, Toshiba, Texas Instruments and IBM, launched their latest hardware and software. TEXAS TO GET NEW AREA CODE Beginning in November, when you call Paris or Tyler, Texas; or other cities in north and northeast Texas, you will need a new area code: 903. The new 903 area code for north and northeast Texas will be introduced Nov. 4 and will affect 194 cities in Texas generally north, east and southeast of the Dallas metropolitan area. Those cities are now in the 214 area code. ========================== MACINTOSH VIRUSES! ========================== by Kristofer H. Cruz (Reprinted from the Puget Sound Atari News, June 1990) When Dave Small boasts about Spectre GCR compatibility with the Mac, he catches himself realizing that it really IS compatible! Unfortunately, this compatibility includes the Mac viruses too! Here are some more recent ones.... WDEF The first one is called WDEF. It is most unusual because it escapes most virus detection programs. It has been found at Eastern Washington University as well as other Inland Empire Institutions. It attaches itself to the desktop file when it infects a disk. From then on, any disk that is inserted will become infected. If your disk or folder icons take unusually long to open - suspect this virus. It can be killed by rebuilding the desktop. To do this, simply restart your hard disk and hold down the COMMAND and OPTION (GCR owners: CONTROL and ALTERNATE) until you are asked if you wish to rebuild your desktop. Answer yes. Do this to all of your disks suspected of the WDEF virus. Zucchini Strikes! (MacWeek 4/3/90) The next one to hit the scene was discovered by an Italian consultant. It is known as the Zucchini virus. It disables the mouse pointer and renders the Mac useless. Virus Detecive, a shareware desk accessory, can be programmed to detect the Zucchini with this search string (put on one line): Resource Start & Pos -1256 & Data 082A#F1655#30832 ;for finding Zuc. virus Version 4.0 of Virus Detective will incorporate this addition. Trojan Horses (InfoLink 04/90) The University of Alberta has reported two Trojan Horse public domain programs that are extremely damaging. Trojan Horses are applications that promise to do one thing but are actually intent on deleting your files or entire hard disk. It has been discovered in Canada (MacWeek, 13 Feb. '90) that the public domain packages MOSAIC and FONTFINDER were embedded with code that will activate after February 10, 1990 and will destroy the directories of all mounted disks when run. This warning is a little late, but maybe one person out there will be saved data loss. Compatability does have its price! =============================== NEW HEADQUARTERS BBS ADDED =============================== by Ron Kovacs Art by Ethan Rider In an effort to provide more local distribution of Z*Net Online, we have added a few BBS systems to our growing list and selected a few as local headquarter systems, providing atleast 5-10 of the past issues. Steve Rider is the SysOp of the Full Moon BBS in Massachusettes and will be assisting Z*Net as a local distributor. The following is artwork provided by his son Ethan. _______ +----------------+ | ____/ |\ /| |\ |\ | Worcester Mass | | | | \ / | | \ | \ | 508-752-1348 | | ---/ | | | | | | | | |170 Megs Online | | __/ | | | | | | | | |Running FoReM ST| | | \ \_____/ / | |__ | |__ +----------------+ |_| \_______/ |____\ |____\ ___ ___ ___ ___ | \ / | ***** ***** | \ | | | \ / | ********* ********* | \| | | \ \/ / | *********** *********** | \ \ | | |\ /| | *********** *********** | |\ | | | \/ | | ********* ********* | | \ | |___/ \___| ***** ***** |___| \__| Worcester Area Z*Net Online Distributor =============================== TOP 20 GAMES IN THE UK =============================== Compiled by Jon Clarke _|_ Gallup Software Chart June 1990 _|_ The top 20 selling Games in the United Kingdom ------------------------------------------------------------------------ This Last Title Company Marks from 10 month month ------------------------------------------------------------------------ 1 8 Rainbow Islands Ocean 8 2 new Midwinter Microprose 9 3 new Italia 1990 Codemasters 7 4 11 Captain Blood Smash 16 10 5 2 Operation Thunderbolt Ocean 8 6 4 Advanced Ski Simulator Codemasters 7 7 7 Player Manager Anco 7 8 new Manchester United Krisalis 9 9 5 Chase HQ Ocean 9 10 6 Batman-The Movie Ocean 8 11 1 Chaos Strikes Back Mirrorsoft 9 12 new SAS Combat Codemasters 8 13 9 Ghouls and Ghosts US Gold 9 14 3 Bomber Activision 9 15 12 Extra Time Anco 8 16 new Ninja Warriors Virgin 8 17 10 Hard Drivin' Domark 9 18 20 Treasure Island Dizzy Codemasters 6 19 new Supercars Gremlin 7 20 new Prohibition Smash 16 9 ======================================================================= Please note not all these games are avalible in the USA ======================================================================= ========================== CHEAP DISK STORAGE ========================== by Jere W. Frazer (Reprinted from the Puget Sound Atari News, June 1990) This article is intended to suggest two types of economical, compact storage for 3 1/2" floppy disks. I don't claim that either of these ideas is original, but anybody who hasn't heard about them already might find them useful. And the prices are right: a dustproof container that holds 50 disks for $2.00 and a two drawer filing cabinet that stores 400 disks for $10.00. I ran across the first suggestion in PSAN (I think) several years ago. A 4"x6" card file will hold 50 disks. The old fashioned wooden ones with fancy joinery and nice wood grain look particularly handsome, if you can find any in thrift shops or somewhere. I don't know if the metal ones are a good idea or not. (Could they get magnetized and destroy your data? If anyone knows, please tell me.) I do know they usually look pretty battered by the time they are old enough to be affordable as second hand items. Last year when I discovered how cheap disks could be when purchased by the hundred, I went shopping in office supply stores. Several types of plastic ones are available. Often they are extremely overpriced for our purpose. Would you believe a smoky plexiglass card file for $16.00? The most common variety is made by Sterling Plastics. Avoid these, because they taper too much at the bottom to hold computer disks. I finally found the W.T. Rogers "New Traditional Home Office 4"x6" Card File", also called "Office Basics 4"x6" Card File". It holds 50 disks; the lid snaps down to exclude dust; the design is pleasing with well defined lines set off by smooth and matte textures; it comes in several pastel colors (in case you want to color code your containers); and they only cost $2.00. (Just last week I saw them at Pay 'N' Save for $1.99.) They work fine as is, although I recommend putting a piece of corrugated cardboard, cut to size, on the bottom. This keeps the disks from hanging up on the little plastic ridges on the bottom. I find these quite useful for storage of bulk purchased blank disks. They are stackable. The other suggestion came from the May 1990, issue of START Magazine. An article by John Damiano entitled "Night of the Overflowing Disk Storage Boxes; VHS Tape Holders Make a Great Place to Store Floppies" started me off. The WhereHouse had two-drawer cabinets for storing 24 video casettes for $9.99. Other places have the same sort of thing in the same general price range. Some are made of wood and plastic; others of particle board and plastic. (You can't tell the difference by the package.) All are covered by a simulated Walnut finish. These units are shipped and sold inside a corrugated cordboard box. Do not discard these boxes. The videocassette storage units have two drawers with small flimsy partitions inside. Break them out with a pair of pliers. These drawers are about 7 3/4" wide inside (or just a little bit wider than two disks side by side). You need to make a tray of some kind that will fit inside each drawer that will allow two rows of disks with a partition between them. The material will obviously need to be very thin. The author of the START article made his out of door skins (a very thin plywood that comes from lumber yards only in 4'x8' sheets). This is expensive overkill. Corrugated cardboard will work very well. It is also easy to work with and can be measured, cut, folded and glued into a sturdy box shape that will fit into the drawer. The cardboard box that you bought the videocassette unit in is just the right size to make two sturdy trays to fit the two drawers. You will still have to scrounge two more pieces of cardboard (4"x13 1/2") for the center partitions of the drawers. Blocks of wood or cardboard or styrofoam, etc. can be used to keep the disks in unfilled rows from falling over, or to separate categories of disks when you have gotten around to sorting them out. Since I converted two units, I know that these disk file cabinets are quite stackable. I hope you have as much fun as I did on this one evening project. I again want to thank John Damiano, the author of the START article (May 1990 issue), for this excellent idea. Now if anybody out there knows a good storage unit for commercial software packages, I would like to hear about it. I am reluctantly being forced to use book shelf space for them (which I would rather use for books). =============================== PD/SHAREWARE STop =============================== by Mark Quinn Author: The Knowledge Vine File name: KV_PARK_.ARC File type: Educational Game Program names: BUTTERFLY IN THE PARK ---------------------------------------------------------------------- In BUTTERFLY IN THE PARK, a child can reveal moving and stationary objects with the aid of a roving butterfly (and the mouse). As more objects are revealed, the scene (and what a scene!) takes shape. There is a zoom feature, too. If you or someone you know has a very young child, do him/her a favor and download this game/adventure. This file, as well as the two other Knowledge Vine files I've mentioned in past issues of Z*NET, are well worth the download time, and then some. Author: James R. Glenn File names: VSQUARED.LZH; VALGUS.ARC File type: Game Program names: VALGUS SQUARED; VALGUS --------------------------------------------------------------------- From the docs to Valgus Squared: "...In VSQ, the seven familiar Valgus pieces are back, but they are tired of falling straight down the screen! Instead, they will come at you from all four sides of the 27x27 playing area. In the middle of this area is a solid 3x3 block. When a piece hits this block or any other pieces that have fallen before it, it will become locked into that place, and a new piece will drop from a randomly chosen side. The object of the game, instead of completing lines across the screen, is to complete squares around the center block. The first square out is 5x5, the next is 7x7, and so on. To help you keep track of which square each position on the screen belongs to, once a piece has fallen, each of its four constituent blocks will change colors. Thus, at the beginning of each round, blocks in the 5x5 square will be blue, those in the 7x7 will be green, then yellow, orange, red, purple, and back to blue again to restart the cycle. When you complete a square, all the squares on top of it will move in. Once you complete a certain number of squares (5 on the first level, 7 on the second, and so on) the round will end and you will be awarded a bonus. Your bonus is determined by the number of empty squares around the perimiter and how far you are into the game. The playfield is then cleared and a new round begins..." As you can see, Valgus Squared is Tetris with a good twist, a twist that should keep PD/shareware game players happy until the next variant comes along. The program ran well...until I finished a round and let the game run for awhile on _my_ machine. Then I got a "FATAL ERROR" and was forced to go back to the desktop. Shucks. But as you can also see from the clear docs above, VSQ has a lot of potential. On to Valgus. Yo, ho-ho! After playing it for about half an hour, I could tell this game has a couple of nice touches. Valgus is much more faithful to its parent than its brother above. The one major difference I noticed between Valgus and Tetris was a vertical wall that had been added to each side of the 'well' on one of the levels. I got an error on my machine when I ran the game from a floppy, but I got no such error when I ran it from the same floppy with the hard drive online. Quinn's Quickies" TOONSMTH.ARC Shareware, by Albert Baggetta. Reproduce a mixed up tune. Don't worry you don't have to know how to read music to play the game. CINEMA.ARC Shareware, by Albert Baggetta. "Children's Animation Program", and that it is. Your kids will have a lot of fun with this one. Kids can save their animations to disk. =============================== ATARI TT WORKSTATION =============================== The following specifications are extracted from Press Releases received from Atari Canada Corp. Technical Specifications ARCHITECTURE ------------ CPU: Motorola MC68030 running at 16MHz (Optional MC68881/MC68882) Memory: RAM 2 Meg standard, available expansion up to 8 Meg RAM, 26 meg using 4 MBit DRAM Data Storage: Built-in 3.5 Inch floppy disk with additional floppy port, 30 meg hard disk DISPLAY ------- RGB and Monochrome monitor support 4096 color, 320x200 to 320x480 with 256 colors 640x480 with 16 colors, 640x400 duochrome mode 1280x960 Hi-Res monochrome USER INTERFACE -------------- Keyboard: Standard QWERTY typewriter format, seperate key cluster, seperate numeric keypad, 94 keys and 10 function keys. Mouse Interface and Joystick Port built in I/O PORTS --------- SCSI and ASCI with DMA, both built in Two asynchronous serial ports, expandable to four Parallel and MIDI ports AppleTalk Interface Internal A24/D16 VME card slot Stereo 8-Bit PCM sound Real Time Clock with NVRAM OS -- Atari TOS and GEM in ROM ========================== ST JOURNAL REVIEWED ========================== by John Strand (Reprinted from the Puget Sound Atari News, June 1990) In these times when many ST magazines have gone under, a new ST magazine has emerged. This new magazine is the ST JOURNAL. Key staff members include: Editorial Director - Tim Lewis (who was previously the Editor in Chief of ST X-PRESS for their last issue); Senior Editor - Marion Carter; Senior Correspondent - John Nagy; and Staff Columnists Jim Allen, Margaret J. Carter, John King Tarpinian and Norm Weinress. The Publishing Director is Steven W. Lesh. The issue I received was the preview issue (April/May 1990), so some of the news was old but not all of it. There was an article on a Russian text processor called PolyText that will be marketed in the U.S. But, don't kid yourself, this is a very professional looking magazine. Every one of it's 72 pages was glossy like START (76 pages counting the front and back covers). The layout, I think, was very well done. There were about 20 pages of advertisements, 15 of them were full page and even one from Atari on the Stacy 4 saying "This computer was made for music". Many of the advertisements I have seen in other ST publications before, but there were others that I had not. Looks like ST JOURNAL will carry Z*NET each month just like PSAN. They have also teamed up with BRE Software to sell a monthly disk for $7.95 plus $2.00 for handling. Well, how much is this fancy new magazine going to cost me? ST JOURNAL will cost $29.95 for a yearly subscription (Canada and foreign add $25.00). Is it worth it? I think so. This magazine reminds me very much of ST X-PRESS and if you liked ST X-PRESS, you will like ST JOURNAL even better. ST Journal 113 W. College Street Covina, CA 91723 (818) 332-0372 ======================================================================= ======================================================================= Z*Net Atari Online Magazine is a weekly released publication covering the Atari community. Opinions and commentary presented are those of the individual authors and do not reflect those of Rovac Industries. Z*NET and Z*NET ATARI ONLINE are copyright 1990 by Rovac Industries. Reprint permission is granted as long as Z*NET ONLINE, Issue Number and author is included at the top of the article. Reprinted articles are not to be edited without permission. ======================================================================= ======================================================================= ZNET ATARI ONLINE MAGAZINE The Online Magazine of Choice Atari News FIRST! Copyright (c)1990 Rovac Industries, Inc.. ======================================================================= --
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