Z*Net: 22-Dec-90 #550

From: Bruce D. Nelson (aj434@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 01/05/91-12:34:20 AM Z

From: aj434@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson)
Subject: Z*Net: 22-Dec-90  #550
Date: Sat Jan  5 00:34:20 1991

                USA * GERMANY * CANADA * NEW ZEALAND * UK

                    SPECIAL YEAR IN REVIEW - PART ONE

                            December 22, 1990
                                Issue #550

          Published and Copyright (c)1990 Rovac Industries, Inc

        Editor: Ron Kovacs             Assistant Editor: John Nagy
     Contributing Editors: Terry Schreiber, Jon Clarke, Mike Schuetz


      EDITORS DESK........................................Ron Kovacs
      ATARI NEWSWIRE................................................
      Z*NET GERMANY.....................................Mike Scheutz
      Z*NET NEW ZEALAND...................................Jon Clarke
      Z*NET CANADA...................................Terry Schreiber
      INDUSTRY NEWSWIRE.............................................
      ATARI DONATES TO DESERT SHIELD...................Press Release
      PORTFOLIO USERS UPDATE..........................Press Releases
      PUBLIC DOMAIN UPDATE.............................Keith Macnutt
      1990: YEAR IN REVIEW - PART ONE......................John Nagy

 by Ron Kovacs

        Merry Christmas from everyone at Z*Net to you and family.

 This week we begin a two part retrospect of Atari's first year of the
 new decade, 1990.  These articles were compiled from Z*Net weekly issues
 we have released during the year and placed in the order of how they
 occurred.  This series was written by John Nagy.

 Since I will also miss voice communication with some of the staff, I
 want to pass along my sincere thanks to everyone who has assisted us
 during the year and want to mention them here:

 Mike Scheutz, Terry Schreiber, Jerry Cross, Bruce Hansford, Alice Amore,
 Keith Whitton, Dorothy Brumleve, Darlah Hudson, Ron Luks, Robert Brodie,
 Jim Chapman, Neil Harris, John King Tarpinian, Mark Quinn, Keith
 Macnutt, Stan Lowell, John Gagne, Nathan Potechin, Robert Ford, Paul
 Glover, Mike Brown, Mike Austin, Dean Lodzinski, Carl Bacani, Bruce
 Kennedy, Gary Gorski, Leo Sell, Steve Rider, and of course John Nagy.
 If I missed anyone, I am sorry.  Thanks for all your assistance this
 year and the years past.

 A special thanks to the pay areas like Compuserve and GEnie for
 supporting us and users in the FNET system.


 Atari is presently running a "Year End Special" through midnight,
 December 31, 1990.  If you purchase six 1040 STe's, you will receive
 either one free SC1435 Color Monitor, or TWO free SM124 Mono monitors,
 dealers choice.  In addition, if you purchase six 520 STs, you will
 receive a free SM124 mono monitor.  This special is exclusive of all
 other promo's currently in place.  You have the option to either
 purchase existing promos, or the above mentioned year end special or any
 combination.  For further information, contact Sales Administration, or
 your local rep.

 In Issue #546 of Z*Net Online, we listed vendors and developers who
 attended the Gurnee Atarifest.  We failed to list others in attendance
 who assisted in making the event a success.  Those omitted were:]
 Namely Computer Cellar, Mars Merchandising, Kolputer Systems, and Paper
 Express.  We apologize for the omission.

 Atari has reportedly given Jimmy Hotz the rights to marketing for his
 full-size Hotz Midi Translator, also known as the Hotz Box.  This $5,000
 and up unit is designed for professional studio and tour use, and it is
 expected that Jimmy will be better able to promote and sell it at on his
 own to fellow musicians.  Atari will retain the rights to marketing any
 consumer version of the controversial device that allows anyone, even a
 child, to free-style solo with or accompany pre-recorded music without a
 sour note... sort of the ultimate in a chord organ.  Jimmy will once
 again join Atari at NAMM, the National Association of Music
 Merchandisers show this coming January 18-21.

 Hotz Box critics take note: Can computers make real music?  And what is
 the actual value of music if it is created and generated by machine
 alone?  These were questions that were hotly debated at a recent
 CYBERARTS Festival, sponsored by Keyboard Magazine in Los Angeles.  In a
 seminar titled "Computer as Inspired Collaborator", International MIDI
 Association members presented software that would sample a musical
 passage and play back a new passage with themes and content related to
 the original but original in themselves.  Many visitors tried it out,
 playing in a theme while the computer dutifully generated a melodic
 counterpoint.  Discussion continued, pro and con, about the value and
 quality of the "music" so generated, until it was revealed that there
 was no software at all.  Instead, a live musician in another room was
 listening and creating the reflections of the original music.  What was
 proved?  Only that the line between human and machine creativity is a
 lot greyer than anyone seems comfortable with.  At least one well known
 conference attendee is still convinced that what he heard HAD to be
 software, that it could not have been done by a human!  Others had egg
 on their faces when they realized that they found technical and creative
 fault with music based only on their erroneous expectation that it was

 Due for release by the time of this writing is a stereo Analog-to-
 digital, DSP, and D-to-A cards for use with the Atari ST computers.
 These devices will allow hard drive files to be recorded and played back
 as sequencer tracks with cut and paste, etc.  Operating as a desk
 accessory, the software works while the ST manages a sequencer or other
 duties.  Full non-destructive cue list software is included with the
 $1,000 package.  MAC versions will be available later.  Built by D2D
 Systems of Cambridge, England, contact Plasmec Systems Ltd., Weydon
 Lane, Farnham, Surrey, U.K., or call 011-44-252-721236.

 MIRRORSOFT of the UK has announced that FLEETSTREET PUBLISHER is being
 pulled off the market due to poor sales.  Most other Mirrorsoft
 productivity titles were transferred to other lines, like MICRODEAL, but
 Fleetstreet was not, and has an uncertain future.  Fleetstreet
 Publisher, recently in version 3, was marketed in the USA by MICHTRON,
 which also recently changed hands.

 MICRODEAL, one of Michtron's main import lines, has announced REPLAY 8,
 replacing Replay 4 as an amateur musician's sound sampler and editor.
 It will feature some of the enhancements of Replay Professional.  USA
 availability is not yet known.

 Downscaling has hit Atari magazines overseas as well as in the USA.  ST
 WORLD (UK) has dropped its publishing schedule back to QUARTERLY

 TITAN DESIGNS of the UK has just introduced its REFLEX GRAPHIC CARD,
 offering increased screen resolutions and able to drive large-screen
 monitors from the ST.  Resolution is 1,024 x 1,024 on A3 or A4 monitors,
 or 1,024 x 800 on standard Atari SM124 monochrome monitors.  It also
 features a ZOOM which increases resolution to 2,048 x 1,536, 16 times
 the normal screen area.  The card fits MEGA machines with adapters in
 the near future for other models.  Price is 230 pounds... with no known
 US importer online as yet.

 Atari's Manager of User Group Services Bob Brodie will begin a
 continuing column for STart Magazine, the largest US Atari specific
 magazine, in early 1991.  His articles will be general interest items,
 with accent on user groups and how they help owners get more from their

 Mentioned in earlier issues of Z*NET, the Migraph Hand Scanner, Touch-
 Up, and Easy Draw are parts of one of the new STe bundles.  We didn't
 mention that TOUCH-UP is going up to version 1.6, and features new
 abilities to save a true grey-scale image in TIFF format.  However, the
 new features require the extended palette of the STe or TT for full use.
 Older ST units will not have access to all the new features of the
 upgraded TOUCH-UP software.

 Atari (Canada) Corp. will be attending the Pacific Rim Computer and
 Communications show which will be held at the Vancouver Trade and
 Convention Centre January 14-16, 1991.  The official corporate booth is
 being flown out from Toronto for this show.  This is one of the best
 looking booths in North America.  Working the booth with Atari (Canada)
 Corp. are the following dealers:

        MicroVision Computers             Nanaimo
        Wizard Computers                  Vancouver
        Quay Computers                    New Westminster
        GXR Systems                       Vancouver
        CyberVideo Com                    Vancouver
        Tom Lee Music Company             Vancouver
        Ward Music                        Vancouver
        Institute of Communication Arts   Burnaby
        A & B Sound                       Vancouver

 Part of the booth has a stage area which will be used for software
 demonstrations and mini-seminars.  Performing on this stage will be Tim
 Brecht Atari (Canada) Corp.'s Digital Arts Consultant.  Tim is a local
 entertainer who has become famous for his unique style, which combines
 state-of-the-art-technology (all driven by a STACY), refined
 instrumental technique, and a razor sharp wit for a great performance
 that can only be described as "totally fun."  A full range of products
 from Atari will be on display:

     TT030                  MEGA STE
     Portfolio              MSDOS
     LYNX                   1040 STE
     SLM 804 /605           TT194 19" TT monitors
     STACY                  PTC1426 Multisync monitor
     SC1435 Stereo Monitor

 Just some of the guests attending the show are:  Peter Alexander of
 Alexander Software, Newbury Park, California.  Peter is the North
 American distributor for CLAB's newest line of educational music
 software.  Peter will be available on Monday the 14th of January.

 Nathan Potechin of ISD, Markham On.  Nathan always adds his own brand of
 flair to a show.  Come down for the latest information on Calamus and
 Dynacadd application software and attend one of the product seminars.

 Paul Garay local entertainer and MIDI programmer.  Meet one of the best
 MIDI programers in Canada.  This amazing fellow can assemble a song in a
 matter of seconds.  Paul recently worked on an album in Germany that
 went Number One in a matter of weeks.

 Rob McGowan - Product Support Manager - Atari (Canada) Corp.  Speak with
 Rob about the latest information concerning new products coming from
 Atari Corporation.

 Denise Carroll - Marketing Coordinator - Atari (Canada) Corp.  One of
 the hardest working people in Atari (Canada) Corp.  Denise is one of the
 main people responsible for Atari (Canada) Corp.'s support at this show.

 Atari (Canada) Corp. would like to invite any and all User Group Members
 that are attending the show to stop by the booth.  Your support and
 enthusiasm will be welcome.  Most dealers have discount coupons worth
 $3.00 off the regular ticket price of $9.00.  Please note:  I believe
 there is an 17 year or older age restriction admittance.

 by Michael Schuetz, Contributing Editor

 ** Alwin Stumpf to take Kenans position at Atari North America? **
 ** Mega STE4 available in Germany shortly after Christmas 1990. **

 As Z*NET reported this fall in a totally surprising newsbreak, Elie
 Kenan, who had stirred so many hopes in North America left the US in
 October to go back to France.  Up until now no official confirmation or
 comment has been made by Atari USA.  Now just before Christmas there
 comes another newsflash - this time out of Atari's stronghold in Europe,

 Word is being spread in Germany that the head of Atari Germany, Alwin
 Stumpf, will pick up the work where Kenan has stopped.  It is said that
 he will leave Europe in a few weeks to go to North America.  At first he
 is supposed to stay there approximately a year.  Again - no official
 comment or confirmation is available from Atari, but one of Germany's
 most reputated newspapers, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ), had
 a big article about Atari in its issue from Thursday, December 20th,
 1990.  The article covered several aspects about Atari in Germany, among
 them the story about the KAOS TOS 1.4.2 and last but not least it was
 mentioned that Alwin Stumpf will move to Canada shortly to steer the
 matters of Atari in North America from there.

 Stumpf switched from Commodore Germany to become the head of Atari
 Germany shortly after Jack Tramiel had taken over Atari in the middle of
 the 80ies.  May be he will be able to turn around the situation in North
 America to Ataris favour.  It is no secret that Germany is one of the
 best, if not THE best, Atari subsidary.  Atari has done things in
 Germany that most US Atarians have just been dreaming of ever since
 1985:  They have and still are heavely advertising their computers.

 Since 1985 several TV commercials could be seen at prime time in the
 major TV stations for the ST.  Radio commercials are constantly praising
 Atari computers and since the TT is selling here in Germany, several
 ads for it have been placed both in magazines and newspapers.

 Let's hope that the spring of 1991 will see a new blossoming of Atari in
 North America with it's new line of Mega STEs and TTs.  By the way - as
 reported two weeks ago, Atari held the press conference in Munich,
 Germany, on December 12th.  Just as expected they showed off the Mega
 STE.  It was said there, that a limited number of Mega STEs is already
 on its way to Germany.  The first units are believed to arrive at
 dealers shelves shortly after Christmas.  At first only one
 configuration of the Mega STE will be available in Germany.  It will be
 the Mega STE 4 with a 48 MB harddrive.  The official retail price for
 this unit will be DM 3.000 (approx. US$ 2000) including the SM124
 monochrome monitor.

 by Jon Clarke, Contributing Editor

  /*/* Seasons Greetings from the Atari Users in New Zealand *\*\
      _                                                 _
     ( )o                Z*Net New Zealand            o( )
     /\  \                 By Jon Clarke             /  /\

 Atari-NZ has started its pre-christmans advertising campain with
 avengence.  Television adverts promoting the $NZ999 Atari Discovery
 Pack.  When asked why the Discovery Pack was being promoted, Mr.  Alex
 Davidson said,  "The reason for this is the low retail demand in the
 economy, making purchasers more concerned about value for money than the
 lastest technology.  We believe that offering the STFM with the
 Discovery Pack at $NZ999 does indeed give buyers value for money-its an
 excellent computer at a very attractive price.

 In a dealer release Atari-NZ have advised its retailers the long awaited
 Stacy portable ST is now shipping to New Zealand.  The first shipment
 will be in the stores for Christmas.  With a RRP of $NZ6995 it comes
 with 4 megs of memory, 40 meg hard disk, and a power source, power

 The TT still has not reached New Zealand in dealer release yet.  It was
 going to be here for Christmas but the new delivery date is set for
 early 1991.  The new 16mhz STe is rumoured to be on order and expected
 to hit the New Zealand shores by early 1991.  The new SC1435 colour/
 stereo monitor is a smashing success, with dealers odering more than

 During the course of 1990 Atari-NZ has sold more units than the last 12
 months to date.  When asked if Atari-NZ was happy with the results, Mr.
 Alex Davidson replied, "In the current state of New Zealands economy we
 are more than happy with the result."  When asked if Atari-NZ had a
 commitment to the New Zeland Atari users, Davidson said, "We certainly
 do and you will see this by the current advertising campain, and the
 great dealer pricing we are giving.  Further to this I would like to
 state that we are over the moon with the response to the introduction of
 the STe and the other new products we released this year."

 A company in New Zeland offering a free noding service to System
 Operators of BBS's, now has three Atari BBS's noding from it.  They are
 Harbour Board BBS in Wellington, STarlight Express in Auckland and also
 STaTus in Auckland.  Users from all around the country are flocking to
 the new service.  Increased activity has been seen by users of all
 computers as they now see what Atari BBS's have to offer.  The three BBS
 systems mentioned all run different software from FoReM to Express to
 MichTron V3.  To quote a comment from a promenant person from IBM at a
 recent All SYSOP function, "It looks like Atari has finally grown up".
 (We did not have the heart to tell him Atari ST's have been doing this
 for over five years now)

 Telecom International and Networks have advised its X25 users that the
 X32 option is now avaliable in New Zealand.  X32 allows a user to call
 his local X25 PAD in data mode and make a modem phone call to 158
 countries world wide.  The X25 Network then calls that countries X25
 Network and it then makes a normal phone call to the system that carries
 X32 in that country.

                   /*/* To our readers around the world,
                   Merry Christmass from Z*Net NZ *\*\

 News from Around the Nets

 From: dh@tardis.cs.ed.ac.uk
 Newsgroups: comp.sys.atari.st
 Subject: STE's in Europe..lack of SIMMS
 Message-ID: <sent.Sun.Dec..2.01:10:38.GMT.1990.via.CS.TARDIS>
 Date: 2 Dec 90 01:10:38 GMT
 A response from Atari on this one please!

 Here in Europe, Atari are now shipping some STE's with soldered in RAM.
 Forgive me if i'm wrong, but was one of the plus points of the STE not
 the easy memory upgrades using SIMM's?

 I reckon Atari are peeved that people are buying 520STE's and pluggin
 in extra SIMM modules.  Atari would rather people buy the 1040STE.
 However, there is no difference between the 520STE and 1040STE apart
 from the larger memory...so why splash out extra dosh for a 1040STE?

 I reckon Atari have dug themselves into this hole. The basic hardware
 of all their machines is the same...face it...there is absolutely no
 reason to buy a 1040STE.

 But why do Ataari have to go and spoil it and solder in ram.  It's going
 to confuse memory upgrading even more.  On a different note, I've just
 bought the new SIMM Ram board for my normal ST from Evesham Micros here
 in the UK.  It costs 89 UK pounds when it comes with 2x256K simm's which
 upgrades a 520ST to 1Mb of ram.  This allows me the easy-upgradeability
 of the STE range (hah!).  I can currently get 1Mb simm's for 30 pounds..
 to upgrade my ST to 4Mb would cost me 120 pounds in the future.  Hmm..
 why would a Mega 4ST cost me hundreds more <grin>  Time for some price
 reductions Atari!


 (Editors Note: This message reprinted as is and NO spelling errors were

                  /*/* Christmas is a time of giving *\*\

        The Top 20 Games          United Kingdom for December 1990

 Rating   Title                      Rating     Title
   1    F-19 Stealth Fighter            2   Shadow Warriors
   3    Kick Off II                     4   Battle of Britian
   5    Battle Master                   6   Operation Stealth
   7    Back to the Future II           8   BBS Jane Seymour
   9    Emlyn Hughes Internat.Soccer    10  Midnight Resistance
   11   Oriental Games                  12  Imperium
   13   Operation Thunderbolt           14  F-29 Retaliator
   15   Midwinter                       16  Fun School III (5-7)
   17   Venus                           18  Football Manager II
   19   BMX Simultor                    20  Falcon Mission II
       [Please Note: Not all these games are available in the USA]

                /*/* Joy to the world the "TT" is here *\*\

 Merry Christmas from New Zealand.

 Well here we are again at another Christmas weekend, woundering what
 happened to the last twelve months.  Time flies when you are having fun
 as they say.

 When I got up this morning I turned on the television and started to
 watch "CNN's Early Prime".  Now here we are in New Zealand some 1/2 a
 world away enjoying a fantastic summer, and I see alot of the readers of
 Z*Net are in the grips of one of the worst winters for many years.  So
 take heart get inside and crank up your Atari computer by the fire and
 have an enjoyable weekend.  Think of us all at the beach enjoying our
 Xmas spirit.

 A Warm and hearty Christmas greeting from Z*Net New Zealand.

 by Terry Schreiber, Contributing Editor


 Canadian sales remained positive despite it's falling enthusiasm in U.S.
 This year broke the barrier into the educational market, strenghtened
 it's dealer and VAR markets and basically stood up and said we are alive
 and well and are fully intent on kicking some butt.

 Atari Canada ran dealer promotions through all four quarters in 1990
 with great success, this follows the European idea of bundling their
 packages.  This year also marked the first year Atari bundled MIDI
 packages, I also believe the first time they have bundled second party
 hardware with their systems.

 This year the competition introduced it's new low priced models.  Atari
 immediately responded by dropping the suggested retail of the 1040STE
 three hundred dollars to $695.00.  In comparison the Amiga 500 selling
 at a local discounter for $599.00 or the Mac Classic selling for

 Atari announced a trade-up program on the new TT product.  Atari will
 pay up to $450.00 trade-in on any ST system towards the TT.  (Dealers
 may pay more) Trade-in's are to be refurbished and donated to charity or
 used for educational purposes.  This is seen as a very positive move on
 Atari's part in the fact that more programs such as this might be seen
 in future on other products.

 People are becoming more service oriented an again Atari was there.
 Atari Canada spent $100,000.00 in their service department this year
 bringing in the latest in test equipment to speed up repairs and
 customer downtime.  As for experience I can only state that a 50%
 improvement has personally been noted.

 Advertising and Atari has been an issue in the past with most users.
 Why can't Atari advertise their computers?  Well this year they did, not
 where most would want to see it, but in print.  Who got the TV slots?
 The Lynx, the same image that Atari was trying to live down.  We are
 realistic so lets examine why the TV dollars went to the Lynx.  What
 ages are we attracting with the Lynx?  The second question is "does the
 majority of that market read newspapers or magazines?"  This could be
 why most TV advertising in Canada was slated to Much Music, a video
 music network.  Promotions on the Lynx were also seen on a National
 level on Neilson's Candy Bars in their "Win a Lynx" campaign running
 third and fourth quarters this year.

 Atari - My Prospective!

 The Crystal Ball is a little fuzzy perhaps I should have traded this one
 in on some Tarot cards.  What I personally feel could help Atari will
 probably never get to the powers which be but it's Christmas, my gift to
 you - Sam.

 An Educational Program for students is in dire need.  Students, with
 valid cards could purchase the systems at a reduced rate.  I have
 noticed that most Universities and College campuses now carry computer
 equipment right on site for sale to students and faculty, Where's Atari?
 This offer should be extended to cover other schools as well, in fact
 all schools.  Dealers could handle this as a rebate situation, claiming
 for reductions on their next orders.  An educational package with good
 literature on software availability and pricing will sell the Atari.
 (It also doesn't hurt to push the Emulation aspect as well)

 Computer Labs should be set up in most major cities.  I know myself,
 that a lab here would prove invaluable, Atari should include classes or
 tutorials with their systems.  This may not be feasible nationwide but
 in major centres it is a must.  With computer labs in place, User Groups
 could be called upon to teach the new buyer how to use their computer.
 The Groups could be compensated by Atari in product and lab time.  The
 cost to Atari, minimal at most in comparison with the potential dollars
 in sales, advertising dollars and good will this would generate.

 Employee purchase plans are another aspect of sales to look at.
 Employees of companies can purchase a computer system through their work
 by payroll deductions.  Computers are offered at discounts and no
 interest charges and underwritten by the company.  This has many
 benefits in the fact that the employer can introduce his staff into the
 High Tech market and get a more computer literate employee.  This also
 helps to boost staff morale when you share common interests.  Atari will
 benefit because the people that would never think of going out and
 buying a computer will purchase one in this types of a situation.  It
 sort of like keeping up with the neighbors, "John bought one so I guess
 I will too, must be something to it!" a physiological approach but thats

 User Group members of two years or more should be allowed to purchase
 equipment at a discount price.  Dealers, when selling equipment, build
 into their pricing the cost of support to that customer.  There is no
 need for this for a person who is not a first time user and Atari should
 reward repeat buyers with some sort of plan or rebate off the price.
 After all, these are the people who keep your machine alive out there
 with their newsletters, bulletin boards, meetings and support of your
 product while you are the one making money.  What if the Users Groups
 said "NO MORE FREE RIDES" Don't you feel you owe them something in

 Advertising, yes we would all like to see the computers advertised on
 television if not for sales then for our own re-assurance that the
 computer is still being sold.  Advertisements in print may carry more
 bang for the buck but the memory of the ad will have faded long before
 the memory of a good TV commercial.  Yes, Atari needs to advertise but
 it is you, the end user now, that is their best source of sales.  Show
 your friends and relatives what the computer can do, you have a captive
 audience.  Someone once said "Atari Computers - The world's best kept
 secret" and I believe them to be right.  Many people feel that if there
 were more computers out in the hands of end users that again there would
 be that much more support for Atari products.  I don't know if I agree
 or disagree with that synopsis, but I think a few hundred thousand more
 end users would carry more weight with development and manufacturing of
 new hardware and software.


 Newspapers can now create their own low-cost in-house library databases
 through the powerful new "PC Datatimes" software system.  The new system
 enables small and mid-sized papers to build computerized libraries using
 stand-alone personal computers.  DataTimes expects that many of the
 newspapers installing "PC DataTimes" will become available on its
 worldwide online information network.  DataTimes subscribers use their
 computers to electronically access the files of more than 645
 publications, news services and financial databases from four
 continents.  DataTimes is an industry reseller for Personal Library
 Software Inc. of Rockville, Md.  For more information contact:
 DataTimes, Oklahoma City, Ed Roach, Newspaper Marketing Manager, (405)

 Prodigy, a computer information service, agreed this week to refund four
 months of fees to Texas subscribers who want to cancel the service.
 Prodigy was accussed by the Texas attorney general's office, of
 misleading customers about its costs and services.  In an agreement,
 Prodigy said it would "clearly and conspicuously" disclose all fees in
 future advertisements.

 Sprague today reported the close of sale of its Semiconductor Group to
 Sanken Electric Co., for $58 million cash.  Sprague is a worldwide
 manufacturer of capacitors and other electronic components.

 Ventura Software announced late this week that it has begun shipment of
 Ventura Publisher, OS/2 Presentation Manager Edition, a new version of
 the company's desktop publishing software running under IBM's OS/2
 version 1.3 Presentation Manager operating environment.  This new
 product will be distributed to major resellers nationwide.

 New Jersey's new area code (908) will make its debut on customer bills
 next month.  Beginning with bills mailed Jan. 3, customers who are
 located in the 908 area or those who make calls to 908 numbers will see
 the new area code on their bills.  Customers who dial incorrectly after
 the new code becomes mandatory on June 8, 1991 will hear a recording
 with dialing instructions.  The 908 area includes all of Warren County
 and almost all of Union County.  The parts of Hunterdon, Middlesex,
 Monmouth, Ocean and Somerset counties that currently are 201 will become
 908, as well as small portions of Sussex and Morris counties.  The 609
 area remains unchanged.

 Last week we reported that San Francisco California's city supervisors
 had been deciding upon a measure to protect users of video display
 terminals, (VDT).  The bill, approved over the protests of business
 leaders, now goes to Mayor Art Agnos for signature.  The measure
 mandates adjustable chairs, special lighting and rest breaks.  Affecting
 all city government and businesses with 15 or more employees, the bill
 also requires glare shields, detachable keyboards and tables with
 sufficient leg space.  If signed, companies have two years to implement
 the provision, after which violators could be fined up to $500 per day.
 The Mayor has ten days to decide and sign the provision.

 The State of New York will soon require CompuServe to add sales tax to
 CompuServe charges.  Connect charges, telecommunications surcharges,
 product surcharges, and items ordered from CompuServe's product ordering
 area will be taxed.  New York members who have filed a sales tax
 exemption form may mail a copy to:  CompuServe Incorporated, Customer
 Administration, PO Box 20212, Columbus, OH  43220.  Please include both
 your CompuServe User ID number and member name.  Sales tax will then be
 discontinued where appropriate.

 The FCC has levied fines totalling $200,000 against computer equipment
 vendors who attended last month's Comdex trade show in Las Vegas found
 violating FCC rules.  The FCC made 300 inspections affecting sale of
 personal computers and peripherals that violated FCC marketing rules.
 Violations cited were vendors who didn't display FCC ID numbers and
 others who allegedly rushed new uncertified products to market while
 competitors were waiting for FCC certifications of their products.  A
 list of those fined is not available.

 A proposed FCC rule change could affect the cost and availability of
 motherboards for personal computers.  The FCC is involved with
 certification programs for computers because the devices can emit
 radiation that cause electronic interference.  The FCC requires that
 computer systems marketed for home use must meet Class B certification
 requirements.  Class B specifies that emissions have to be of an
 intensity low enough not to disrupt communications on a wide range of
 frequencies.  Currently, complete systems and some peripherals such as
 accelerator cards and video boards must be certified.  However, the FCC
 is considering a change in the classification of motherboards to require
 they be certified individually.  Under current regulations the boards
 are considered subassemblies not subject to certification.  The FCC
 invites comments on the proposed rule change.  Those interested who want
 to submit comments to the FCC should do so now since the first round of
 hearings were held last week.  Comments on the proposed certification of
 RCPU boards (motherboards) should refer to RGen Docket No. 90-413S and
 should be sent to: Office of the Secretary, FCC, Gen. Docket No. 90-413,
 Washington, DC 20554.

 A new computer virus has been found in the Apple Mac.  The virus, called
 ZUC B, forces the computer's cursor to drift across the screen.  When
 the virus finally reaches the Mac's Finder software, cursor control
 becomes impossible.

                                                           PRESS RELEASE

 Agency Contact:  Andy Marken
                  Marken Communications, Inc.
 (408) 296-3600 -- Office  (408) 296-3803 -- FAX  (408) 732-9589 -- Home

 Client Contact:  Ron Beltramo (408) 745-2000


 SUNNYVALE, CA (November 30, 1990) -- To give military personnel
 participating in Operation Desert Shield a healthy way to release pent-
 up energy and to alleviate some of their boredom, Atari Corporation has
 made arrangements with the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) and the USO to
 supply Lynx portable color video game system kiosks and video game
 cartridges to military recreation centers in Saudi Arabia.

 The display kiosks that are being shipped have four Lynx systems
 installed as well as complete libraries of game cards.  "We've packed
 the Lynx kiosks so they can be taken right from the palettes, plugged in
 and used by the men and women who are temporarily stationed in Saudi
 Arabia," said Meade Ames-Klein, president of the consumer products game
 division.  "We're confident that the game systems will be in the
 recreation centers before the Christmas holidays."

 Requests from the Field

 Ames-Klein said that the idea of shipping Lynx systems to Operation
 Desert Shield was discussed shortly after the first group of troops
 arrived in Saudi Arabia.  "Our military personnel hadn't been there a
 month when we received a letter from an Army sergeant requesting that we
 ship him a sun visor/screen guard for his Lynx so he could play his
 system more easily when he was off duty," Ames-Klein recalled.

 "Since then," he noted, "we've received dozens of letters from military
 personnel who have told us about endless hours of having nothing to do.
 They've requested accessories such as sun visors, carrying pouches and
 additional game cartridges.  Others, have seen someone else stationed
 there with a Lynx and have wanted to buy their own system and games."

 "When it became obvious that our troops were going to be in the Middle
 East for some time," he continued, "we thought the Lynx systems and game
 cartridges would help improve morale and would provide the men and women
 stationed there with a little entertainment.  Perhaps, for at least a
 short period of time, the Lynx will let them escape from the reality of
 their surroundings."

 Variety of Game Cartridges

 Ames-Klein said that with the exception of "Blue Lighting," a combat jet
 fighter game, the games are not war-oriented and have been designed to
 test an individual's skills and agility.  With a number of the game
 cards, players in the recreation centers will be able to connect the
 Lynx game systems with ComLynx cables and enjoy multi-player

 Game cards that are being shipped with the Kiosks include "California
 Games," a one- or two-player game that includes BMX biking,
 skateboarding, surfing and foot bag juggling; "Gates of Zendocon," a 30-
 level game where players conquer hostile aliens in order to return home;
 and "Electrocop," where the player must rescue the President's daughter.
 Games also include "Chip's Challenge," with 144 puzzles; "Gauntlet,"
 where up to four players can search for the Star Gem; "Slime World"
 where up to eight players travel deep into the gooiest, most slippery
 mire in the world; "Klax,"which challenges players to stack tiles and
 create a klax; "Paperboy;" "Ms. PackMan" and others.

 Second-Generation Players

 Ames-Klein pointed out that many of the men and women stationed in Saudi
 Arabia are second-generation video game players ...  they grew up
 playing Atari's early game systems and have returned to playing the new
 advanced games.  "Back in 1984/85, they lost interest in video games
 because the software was boring," he noted.  "But the new generation of
 video games feature dynamite graphics and color, as well as exceptional
 complexity and depth of play.  Today's games are much more difficult to
 master because the game developers have taken maximum advantage of the
 advanced microprocessor used in the Lynx system."

 Ames-Klein valued the initial shipment of Lynx video game kiosks and
 game cartridges at $50,000.  He added that, depending upon how long U.S.
 military are stationed in the area and the feedback they receive from
 USO officials, additional Lynx systems may be sent to the area.

 First Color Portable System

 Lynx, which was introduced in several test markets for Christmas last
 year was the video game industry's first color hand-held video
 entertainment system.  Slightly larger than a video cassette, the system
 features a backlit LCD screen that displays up to 16 colors from a
 palette of 4,096.  The Lynx screen can be rotated 180 degrees for right-
 or left-handed play.  Powered by six "AA" batteries, the system uses
 credit card-sized game cartridges so players can enjoy any of the more
 than 15 games that are currently available.

 Priced at $179.95, the Lynx portable color entertainment system,
 accessories and game cartridges are available at major retailers across
 the country.

 For complete information on Lynx, Atari's home video game systems and
 growing family of video game software call or write Ron Beltramo, Vice
 President of Marketing, Atari Computer, 1196 Borregas Avenue, Sunnyvale,
 CA 94088, (408) 745-2000, FAX (408) 745-2088.

 # # #

 Atari is a registered trademark; Lynx and Comlynx are trademarks of
 Atari Corporation (AMEX:ATC).

 Other products are trademarks of their manufacturers.


                   ** NEW PILOTS SOFTWARE AVAILABLE **


 Paragon Technologies announces the introduction of two aviation software
 packages for the Atari Portfolio:


 The FX-3 will turn your Atari Portfolio into a DUATS terminal and flight
 calculator.  With the FX-3 software and a portable, battery operated
 modem the size of a cigarette pack (also available from Paragon) you can
 access DUATS services to obtain a weather briefing, file a flight plan
 or access the many other flight services.  Your session can be saved to
 an electronic log and then later reviewed at your own pace.  The FX-3
 can be used as a general purpose communications program to access
 CompuServe and other information services while you're on the road.  A
 unique 80 character by 25 line Quasi-Static emulation enhances the
 Portfolio's capabilities.  The flight calculator provides TAS, WIND,
 RATE, FUEL and WEIGHT & BALANCE calculations.


 If it takes you more than 60 seconds to plan your flight, you need the
 FX-4 Flight Planner.  Featuring a full U.S. navigational database, the
 FX-4 makes flight planning quick and easy.  The FX-4 will automatically
 generate detailed leg by leg trip plans for you in seconds.  You may
 specify the route yourself or let the FX-4 choose a set of navaids along
 an optimal great circle route.  You can locate the twenty closest
 airports or navaids from your current airport or navaid automatically.
 Flight plans can also be reversed or stored in memory for later recall.
 If you're a renter, you will also appreciate being able to store
 multiple aircraft performance files for later recall.

     - Full North American and Caribbean Navigational Database.
     - Every public use airport in the U.S. - paved, turf, and water.
     - Detailed Leg-by-Leg Trip Plan
     - Optional 56 day update service

 Contact Paragon Technologies at 1-800-255-9411.

                       PRESS RELEASE   PRESS RELEASE

                         **  ***  ***** * ***  **  *  *
                        *  * *  *   *   * *   *  * ** *
                        **** ***    *   *  *  **** * **
                        *  * *  *   *   * *** *  * *  *

                         S   O   F   T   W   A   R   E

                                 PRESS RELEASE
                             for IMMEDIATE RELAESE


 MANTECA--- Artisan Software has just released a software system which
 unleashes the data transfer power between the Atari ST, STE and MEGA
 computers and the Atari Portfolio computer.  Portfolio is the innovative
 palmtop MS-DOS command compatible computer.  The new package by Artisan
 Software entitled TransporT(tm) is compatible on color or monochrome
 systems and is specifically written to be fast, easy and efficient.

 The program offers two levels of interaction with the user.  The initial
 menu appears on boot-up and permits efficient ASCII file transfers back
 The system prompts the user with the few exact entries required on the
 Portfolio to accomplish the transfer.  More advance users will be able
 to enter two extended menu systems which support Xmodem, non-ASCII
 character stripping, on-line help and file viewing and more.  A separate
 text file is included which offers constructive tips on using the
 Portfolio productively.  A serial interface and null-modem serial cable
 is required at an nominal charge from Atari computer dealers.

 TransporT is Artisan Software's fifth software release.  Their titles
 include the Word Quest(tm) series of word search and crossword puzzle
 construction systems and Graph Maker(tm).  TransporT retails for $24.95
 and may be purchased from better Atari computer stores or from Artisan
 Software directly.  Direct orders should include $1.50 shipping and
 handling.  California, add 6.25% tax.  For more information or to place
 an order, write: ARTISAN SOFTWARE, P.O. Box 849, Manteca, CA 95336.

 by Keith MacNutt

 Magnum Software
 2871 S. 124th ST.
 Milwaukee, WI 53227

 VIRUSES!  Nearly everyone I know, has at one time or another, got these
 pesky little trouble makers on public domain disks exchanged quite
 innocently from friends.  Within days of someone getting bitten, people
 are going through their collections and comparing notes on what they
 found, and hopefully all that turns up is some harmless little program
 written by a bored hacker out to make a name for themselves.  Up to this
 point little damage has been done in the ST community, mainly because
 the software base is not as large and I think we all have better things
 to do with those programming talents.  The first line of defense in
 slowing down or stopping the spread of viruses is to check all disks
 that you receive, and to immediately call anyone who has inadvertently
 passed one of these along, so that they can clean up their problem and
 not spread it further.

 A few days ago one of my friends gave me a little program that looked
 very interesting, and after I tried it, I immediately started using it
 to hopefully protect myself and many others from those dreaded viruses.
 Since that first encounter, the program has been updated and is
 available on Genie. ( file name SHOTZII )

 by John Nagy, Assistant Editor

 (Original for ST Journal Magazine, presented with additional material
  for Z*NET)

 PART 1 (Concluded next week in Z*NET)

 1990... was it the year of Atari?  It was a year filled with hope and
 with disappointment.  It was a year of promises and some fulfillment.
 Lets look at the highlights and the lowlights together.

 Computer years tend to be measured from Fall Comdex to Fall Comdex
 rather than from the more traditional calendar.  So here is a chronology
 of Atari since the Comdex last November 1989, up through the recent
 Comdex, to the end of 1990.

 Part 1, this week, will take us up to June 1990, and next week we will
 conclude with July to presstime 1990 plus a look ahead.

 I've focussed on Atari and added only a few major third-party
 announcements.  While I know some folks will feel slighted by being
 omitted, sorry.  I'll be blaming it on the editor. (Grin!)


 Sig Hartmann retires after 5 years as front man for Atari.

 Comdex - the US marketplace of computers, attended by the industry
 bigwigs, dealers, and distributors who are deciding what lines they will
 buy and sell in the coming year.  In the Las Vegas convention
 facilities, Atari Corporation occupies a spot near the main entrance
 where they seem to sit as a foothill to the towering ZENITH and IBM
 exhibits just behind it.  Atari has perhaps their best looking booth
 ever, in light colors with open feeling displays.  "A Computer For
 Everyone" declares the overhead sign, and from the brand new palmtop
 Portfolio and STe to the TT (being shown in production prototypes),
 Atari draws lots of attention.  Carrel after carrel of major third party
 developers each show their own lines to thousands of intrigued visitors.
 The STacy and Portfolio are the clear eye catchers.  Over 1,000
 potential distribution contacts are made for the Portfolio alone.  Bob
 Brodie is popular already in his second month at Atari.  Charles Cherry,
 only two weeks with Atari after leaving ANTIC Software, begins his
 effort to support developers in new and attractive ways, including
 SOFTSOURCE and distribution of dealer and user data.  The mood is very
 up - this seems to signal a new and forward moving atmosphere at and for

 The Independent Association of Atari Developers (IAAD) is formed by 40
 developers at the WAACE Atari show outside Washington, DC.  Nathan
 Potechin of ISD is the first Chairperson.

 ST-LOG and ANALOG magazines merge, then announce that the November 1989
 issue will be the last of any Atari magazines from Flynt Publications.
 START magazine loses Andrew Reese and editor and Tom Byron takes over,
 and ST-XPRESS closes altogether.

 GADGETS BY SMALL begins distribution of the GCR Mac Emulator, enabling
 the Atari ST to not only run MACINTOSH software faster thana MAC, but
 read and write real MAC disks... faster than a MAC.

 PC-SPEED, an internal IBM emulator board from Germany, is in
 distribution by MICHTRON, while AVANT-GARDE is unable to meet release
 promises with PCDITTO II, a hardware PC emulator first shown in April,


 Mike Morand, President at Atari for only two months, resigns.  David
 Harris in named as his successor.

 Greg Pratt, Atari's Chief Financial Officer, continues the search for a
 buy for the FEDERATED GROUP store chain that has drained Atari's working

 The FCC passes the STACY laptop ST as a "TYPE A" device, meaning that it
 can only be sold as a commercial device, not in outlets for the home
 users.  Battery operation time is admitted to be about 15 minutes for
 units with hard drives.

 JANUARY 1990:

 The LYNX is a major hit at the Winter Consumer Electronics Show in Las
 Vegas.  Nintendo is the clear winner in volume and promotion with the
 Game Boy, but the LYNX wins hearts with astounding color graphics in a
 hand held machine.  Private showing of a prototype portable machine from
 NEC causes worry that the LYNX will be passed up by this newer unit by
 Christmas 1990.

 QUICK ST goes from shareware to commercial, as Darek Mihocka begins a
 trend in small developer success stories.

 ZMAGAZINE and ST*ZMAGAZINE merge to become Z*NET ONLINE, a single weekly
 electronic publication covering the entire Atari computer lineup.  So
 begins the fifth year of the continuing, volunteer, non-profit Z*NET

 Avant-Garde's PCDITTO II begins actual shipment, but less than 10% of
 the users can make it work, and it turns out to be so large that only
 MEGA machines have room inside for it.

 TALON announces that they will begin importing the SUPERCHARGER external
 IBM emulator that will require no installation at all.


 Jack Tramiel, "retired" controlling stock owner of Atari and chair of
 the Board of Directors, takes a more active hand in Atari policy and

 A $5,000,000.00 backorder backlog that has had some items (like
 Monochrome Monitors) unavailable for five months begins to ease as Atari
 hardware shipments arrive at dealers.

 Rumors begin to circulate about a new version of the MEGA computer that
 may be based on the STe and card-compatible with the TT.

 Atari makes an impression at the National Association of Music
 Merchandisers (NAMM) show as the only major computer display.  The Hotz
 Box and the STacy are featured, and a concert is sponsored by Atari.

 MIDI-TASKING is released to developers as a BETA-TEST version, offering
 a multitasking environment under GEM, tailored for MIDI applications.

 MARCH 1990:

 Layoffs of 15% of the Sunnyvale Atari employees affect mostly warehouse
 and accounting departments, but are felt by all.

 After some angry power plays and short-scheduled events by commercial
 promoters that appear to be trying to squeeze user groups out of show
 production, Atari announces that they will not support Atari Fests that
 are not scheduled at least 120 days ahead of time and that are closer
 than 30 days to any other show.

 Charles Cherry's SoftSource system of cataloging and promoting third-
 party developers nears readiness on GEnie telecommunication system.

 FEDERATED is finally sold, the last parts going to SILO's chain of
 stores in a deal that gives Atari a large block of the huge UK company's

 Avant-Garde releases a series of fixes and chip replacements that make
 PCDITTO II work... for as many as 80% of the owners.

 CALAMUS OUTLINE ART begins shipping from ISD.  It comes with a
 conversion program to turn Outline format graphics into PostScript

 APRIL 1990:

 ATARI EXPLORER MAGAZINE editors David Ahl and Betsy Staples are fired by
 Atari, the publisher, for their critical commentary in the "Spring"
 issue.  The issue is recalled before distribution and reworked.

 The second Disneyland World Of Atari is a moderate success, with
 showings of some new products.  Gadgets's 68030 upgrade board is shown
 - working - and might even be faster than Atari's own TT.

 The STe finally passes the FCC testing and can begin distribution in the

 MICHTRON releases FLEET STREET PUBLISHER 3.0 without fanfare, as
 Michtron begins winding down operations and discussing a possible sale.
 They continue to appear at shows with great deals.

 The Business Software Alliance (BSA) raids an Atari Taiwan plant and
 finds several pirate copies of LOTUS on employee machines.  Atari denies
 responsibility and criticizes BSA priorities.

 A two-day Atarifest in Pittsburgh, PA sponsored by PACE is a resounding
 flop, with well under 500 attending.  Worse, comments from many visitors
 cause fears about the rampant and apparently accepted level of piracy in
 the area.  Discussion of the situation online and in media reports
 infuriate local groups.

 MAY 1990:

 At Atari's annual meeting, shareholders learn that the company has
 earned $1.5 million in the most recent quarter, and sees the TT.

 Jim Fisher is announced as the new editor of Atari Explorer, adding to
 Jim's duties as Vice President of Marketing.  Production will be handled
 by Jon Jainschigg, formerly the technical editor of Explorer under
 Staples and Ahl.

 World of Atari Manager Richard Tsukiji relights old fires by announcing
 a WOA in San Jose less than a month before the Glendale Atari Faire,
 defying Atari's guidelines for show scheduling.  A similar announcement
 in 1989 caused cancellation of BOTH shows.  This year, neither plan to
 back down.

 ST JOURNAL, from Steve Lesh and Quill Publications, begins distribution
 of their first issue.  The new ST specific magazine attempts to provide
 a serious user's journal of news and reviews, avoiding the "game" image

 JUNE 1990:

 The Summer CES in Chicago was attended by Atari but no new hardware or
 packages were offered.  The long talked about "Atari Advantage" package
 (a bundle of LOTS of game and productivity software with a 520ST ad a
 very low price) was prepped then pulled out of the CES show at the last
 moment.  The Tramiels are rethinking the contents and pricing of the

 ELIE KENAN comes to Atari from his position as Manager of Atari France,
 to begin preparations for his takeover of Atari USA, Canada, and France.

 The STacy and STe begin shipping to Atari dealers in the USA.

 Atari co-sponsors the "Silicon Summit", trade talks with the Soviets
 concerning a trade of computers for RAM CHIP production in the USSR.

 WOA promoter Richard Tsukiji is informed by Atari that Atari will not
 participate or support his San Jose show in any way, due to his late and
 conflicting scheduling of the show.

 GRIBNIF shows their NEODESK 3 for the first time, offering lots of
 remarkable advancements in their ST desktop replacement.

 ICD Inc. offers new driver software for their hard drives and host
 adapters that resolves a major incompatibility with Talon's Supercharger
 IBM emulator.

 MORE, as 1990, the Year of Atari In Review continues...

                        Season's Greetings from Z-Net

 Z*NET ONLINE MAGAZINE is Copyright (c)1990 by Rovac Industries Inc.
 Opinions and commentaries presented are those of the author and do not
 reflect the opinions of the Z*NET/ROVAC staff.

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                         *** MERRY CHRISTMAS ***

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