ST Report: 21-Dec-90 #651

From: Bruce D. Nelson (aj434@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 01/17/91-08:38:56 PM Z

From: aj434@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson)
Subject: ST Report: 21-Dec-90  #651
Date: Thu Jan 17 20:38:56 1991

                  *---== ST REPORT ONLINE MAGAZINE ==---*
                  "The Original 16/32bit Online Magazine"
                            STR Publishing Inc.

 December 21, 1990                                                  No.6.51

                         STReport Online Magazine?
                          Post Office Box   6672
                          Jacksonville,  Florida
                               32205 ~ 6672

                               R.F. Mariano
                            Publisher - Editor
                   Voice: 904-783-3319  10 AM - 4 PM EST
                 BBS:  904-786-4176  USR/HST DUAL STANDARD
                    FAX: 904-783-3319 12 AM - 6 AM EST

     **  Fnet Node 350 * FidoNet Node 1:112/35 * NeST Node 90:03/0  **
               STR'S privately owned & operated support BBS
              carries ALL issues of STReport Online Magazine
       carrying STReport Online Magazine for their user's enjoyment

 > 12/21/90: STReport? #6.51  The Original 16/32 bit Online Magazine!
     - The Editor's Desk      - CPU REPORT        - CPU Status Report
     - PGST 2.0 WHEN?         - STAR TREK XMAS!   - ST's FUTURE
     - STR Mail Call          - PORTFOLIO NEWS    - TT030 & TIME
     - Brodie Calling         - Santa's Helpers   - STR Confidential

                    * GADGETS ANNOUNCES "SST" 68030! *
                       * NO LOOK & FEEL LOCK-DOWN! *

                         ST REPORT ONLINE MAGAZINE?
                     The _Number One_ Online Magazine
                              -* FEATURING *-
                "Accurate UP-TO-DATE News and Information"
       Current Events, Original Articles, Hot Tips, and Information
             Hardware - Software - Corporate - R & D - Imports
 STReport's  support  BBS,  NODE  #  350 invites systems using Forem ST and
 Turbo Board BBS to participate in the Fido/F-Net  Mail Network.   Or, call
 Node 350  direct at  904-786-4176, and  enjoy the excitement of exchanging
 information relative to the Atari ST  computer arena  through an excellent
 International ST Mail Network.  All registered F-NET - Crossnet SysOps are
 welcome to join the STReport Crossnet Conference.  The Crossnet Conference
 Code  is  #34813,  and  the  "Lead  Node"  is # 350.  All systems are most
 welcome to actively participate.  Support Atari Computers;  Join Today!

 > The Editor's Podium?

     This is our Christmas Season Issue.. Tis the season etc...  so, please
 allow this  tired writer a moment to reflect on the times.  How easy it is
 deduce that the economy has slowed.  Listen to the complaints and moaning.
 But wait!   There is relatively little to be heard.  In fact, there's talk
 that things have indeed picked up and are getting better by the day!

     Folks its true, the  marketplace activity,  in general,  has picked up
 quite a bit and it is showing no signs of slowing down.  The announcements
 by Atari of the new products and of  course, the  FCC Class  B type accep-
 tance of  the Mega  STe has  certainly given the market a shot in the arm.
 That goodness for the online magazines  as they  and they  alone bring the
 news out  when it  is still  news and suitable to be called that.  The sad
 note this week is seeing the hard copy  periodicals arriving  at the news-
 stands and  at the user's homes touting the Comdex affair from last Novem-
 ber as NEWS!  To top it off, we see where certain  rumors that  have since
 died are resurrected by these carriers of the "latest news".  'Tis a shame
 but that's the way it is.  Not  much we  can do  about that.   Perhaps the
 hard copy  periodicals should  stick to  reviews and photo coverage of the
 latest hardware and software?  Hard  News is  no longer  news by  the time
 the hard copies arrive.

     We can  however let  one hard copy magazine know that the inaccuracies
 are getting out of  hand.. WHAT???  that coming  from me???    Absolutely,
 there is  such a  thing as  tweaking a  nose or two to get a point across.
 But...  when it becomes an outright amputation of the nose its a bit much.
 Please, I  am no  angel, but  one of  my colleagues, Frank Sommers has ob-
 viously latched onto a  very poor  source of  info.   Come'on Frank, check
 this "source"  out thoroughly..  the guy's  throwing you  more curves than
 Sandy Koufax threw in his entire  career.   Hold it!   Hold  it!.. Current
 Notes is  a dynamite magazine, if I didn't care I wouldn't say a word!!  I
 do care, Current Notes is a respected, well read magazine  that I  for one
 would like  to see  around for a long time.  This is by no means a slap at
 CN or its fine staff.  Just an alarm that cries for  attention and correc-

     May  the  warmth  of  this,  the  Yuletide  season,  find you and your
 families together, healthy and happy.




                          FOR A LIMITED TIME ONLY


                              to the Readers of;

                         STREPORT ONLINE MAGAZINE?
                  "The Original 16/32bit Online Magazine"

                         NEW USERS; SIGN UP TODAY!

               CALL: 1-800-848-8199 .. Ask for operator 198

                 You will receive your complimentary time
                       be online in no time at all!

                 WHAT'S NEW IN THE ATARI FORUMS (Dec. 21)

                         WISH YOU AND YOUR FAMILY

                            MINI BBS VERSION 25

     BBS25.LZH, available in LIBRARY 1 of the Atari  Productivity Forum (GO
 ATARIPRO), is  the newest  version of MINI BBS from Norway.  Supports 9600
 baud modems, XMODEM, YMODEM and ZMODEM downloading, and users can ARC mail
 and text  files for  faster downloading.   Can  autoboot in  case of power
 outages, and can be run from a 1/2 Meg 520ST  with only  one floppy drive.
 Includes the ability to use a remote ST as Sysop console through a MIDINET
 program, included.


     See calendar of any month, any year 1-9999. Attach 'events' to days by
 date  or  by  position  in  month  -  never forget your anniversary again!
 Display events for the day, browse through events, find a  specific event.
 Custom Desk  menu entry  makes it easy to distinguish multiple copies (for
 Birthdays, Holidays, etc). Preloaded with 4 dozen events! Runs as a PRG or
 ACC on any ST/TT in any resolutin.  Download file CAL32.ARC from LIBRARY 1
 of the Atari Productivity Forum (GO ATARIPRO).


 The following are just a few of the  new files  available in  LIBRARY 1 of
 the Atari Portfolio Forum (GO APORTFOLIO):

     Lane Lester uploaded a text file (LODTRM.ZIP) that explains how to get
 XTERM2 into a Portfolio through the serial interface  for the  first time.
 Not suggested  for the  easily frustrated!   David  Hayden uploaded a text
 file that describes Dave's Dream Portfolio  (DREAM.PF).   His idea  was to
 stimulate discussion  on how  to improve  the current generation Portfolio
 and solicit ideas for the next version.   Finally, download  FT4LPT.ARC to
 hack FT.COM  in order  to use  your second printer port of your desktop PC
 to communicate with your Portfolio.


 Latest ICD AdSCSI host adapter software now available in LIBRARY  7 of the
 Atari Vendors Forum (GO ATARIVEN) courtesy ICD's Tom Harker.

 The following  new files  are now  available from Double Click Software in
 LIBRARY 13 of the Atari Vendors Forum (GO ATARIVEN):

  DCDSND.ARC - DC DMA SOUND PLAYER plays digitized sounds on STe.
  DCFLIT.ARC - DC FLIGHT turns on the floppy drive light every time a
               RAMDISK is accessed.

     For a copy of the latest  ISD Marketing  customer mailout  on Calamus,
 please see  file CUSUPD.TXT  in LIBRARY  17 of the Atari Vendors Forum (GO
 ATARIVEN).  It contains information  relevant  to  our  registered Calamus
 and  Outline  Art  owners  only  and  includes  quite  a  few very special
 offerings for a limited time only.




   Issue # 96

 by Michael Arthur


 Part I

       There seems to be much confusion in the  microcomputer industry over
 the various  facets of and techniques used in multitasking.  While phrases
 such as MMU's, virtual memory, and priority schemes  help to  describe its
 services, they also tend to confuse the issue.  Therefore, there is a need
 to fully understand this very complex issue.

       Multitasking, as  you may  know, is  a way  of making  more than one
 application share  system resources  in such a way that they appear to run
 at the same time.   This involves  two things:   Resource  Management, and
 (to a lesser extent) Interprocess Communication.

                            RESOURCE MANAGEMENT

       Resource management  is the  method by  which the system distributes
 the computer's CPU time, system I/O, and memory  between tasks.   The most
 important of these functions (at least to a multitasker) is CPU time.

       Distributing the  CPU's time  between each  process is done by first
 dividing the  CPU's  time  into  segments  called  time  slices,  and then
 distributing enough  time slices each second (using a processor scheduler)
 to each process (or task) that is running on the system so as to give each
 task a certain amount of time to use the CPU.  The scheduler must give out
 time slices in such a way that:

       1) All processes are able to use the CPU for a certain
          amount of time.

       2) Heavily CPU-intensive tasks get as many time slices as

       3) CPU time is used as efficiently as possible.

       4) All tasks are completed as quickly as possible.

       5) The program in the foreground (that is, the program that the
          user is currently interacting with) functions as quickly as
          possible, so as to increase the system's responsiveness to
          the user.

       These goals are often contradictions within themselves, as  the only
 way to  make programs run faster in the foreground is to steal time slices
 that would be used by programs running in the background,  and if programs
 in the  background are  CPU-intensive (or if there are many programs being
 run at the same time) the scheduler must dole out  a reasonable  amount of
 time slices  to each  program.  But as this process necessarily limits the
 speed with which all  tasks  are  completed,  the  system  runs  into many
 difficulties in  the attempt to be more efficient.  Obviously, the life of
 a multitasking operating system is not easy....

       Fortunately, System I/O can  often be  done while  the CPU  is doing
 other  things,  meaning  that  processes  must  relinquish  the  CPU while
 performing I/O operations.   The scheduler  then has  more time  slices to
 give to  other programs,  and this speeds up system operation.  One catch,
 though:  As System I/O is comparatively slow in the first place, perceived
 system performance  (especially for foreground programs that are doing I/O
 operations) drops markedly, as System I/O must also be multitasked.  This,
 predictably, tends  not to be efficient. In such cases, a large (32K-128K)
 I/O Cache (like a Print Spooler or Disk Cache) can become necessary.

       The system's job of allocating all  available memory  to the various
 running tasks,  while not as apparent to the end user as managing CPU time
 or System I/O, is just as  essential.   All operating  systems must fairly
 and  efficiently  distribute  memory  to  any  program(s)  running on that
 computer.  But while  single tasking  operating systems  just allocate all
 RAM to  the application  currently running,  multitaskers not only have to
 make all memory available to the tasks currently running, but  to conserve
 as much memory as possible for programs that will be run later.

       In order to do this, after the operating system has allocated enough
 memory for a process to run in, it designates the  rest of  the computer's
 RAM as  a big pool of Shared Memory.  This special segment of RAM is where
 the system gets memory  to allocate  for new  tasks, and  to allow current
 tasks to  use as  much memory as they need, PROVIDED that the system gives
 the tasks permission.  Since the system controls what memory  is allocated
 to all  processes, Shared  Memory makes memory management a lot easier for
 multitaskers.  When the system has allocated all the RAM  in the computer,
 for example,  it simply deallocates all memory that is not currently being
 used by running tasks to replenish its supply of Shared memory.

       It is relatively simple to implement  shared memory  in multitasking
 systems built from the ground up, as processes in such systems have to ask
 the system for memory  before they  can use  it.   In add-on multitaskers,
 however, the  system tells  the task  that the  segment of  memory that it
 allocated to it is all the memory that is available, and as the task needs
 more memory,  the system allocates more to it if possible.  Likewise, if a
 task does not need a certain section of  RAM allocated  to it,  the system
 deallocates that section of RAM, adding it to its supply of Shared Memory.

       Since  the  system  can  only  deallocate so much memory from tasks,
 however, a multitasking OS must find other ways  to conserve  memory.  One
 excellent way  is to  have built-in  code libraries.   These are functions
 that an application generally performs (such as floating point operations,
 screen handling,  etc.) that the system makes available to programmers for
 their use, which have MANY benefits.  Some are that  the resulting program
 is much smaller than it would normally have been (which conserves memory),
 the operating system can  manage tasks  much more  quickly and efficiently
 (since these  Libraries are  part of  the OS itself), resulting in quicker
 execution of those tasks, and compatibility  is ensured,  so that hardware
 products (such  as math  co-processors) can work with all programs, and so
 improvements made to the  operating system  directly benefit  the system's

                         INTERPROCESS COMMUNICATIONS

       Resource Management  is a  vital component of multitasking operating
 systems, doing the integral functions required of them.   But  even though
 a multitasking system can be designed using just it, the potential uses of
 multitaskers are squandered if it doesn't provide some way for all running
 tasks  to  communicate  and  exchange  information  with each other.  This
 capability  (called  InterProcess  Communications,  or  IPC)  is  of great
 advantage to any serious multitasker.  Just about any aspect of computing,
 from sending data from a database to a spreadsheet, to  E-Mail services on
 a Local Area Network can be made more efficient when applications can work
 together.  And since those applications are all running at  the same time,
 things  that  aren't  possible  on  normal  systems (such as a spreadsheet
 constantly being updated with financial data from a  database) become easy
 for multitasking systems.

       While  the  possible  implementations of Interprocess Communications
       are incalculable, here are some of the ones  that are  most commonly
       used in multitasking operating systems:


     When a word processor is printing a document in a multitasking system,
 you usually want it  to  finish  before  another  program  starts printing
 something else.   In  order for a scheduler to efficiently handle when two
 tasks compete for a certain system resource, it assigns a semaphore to the
 resource.   A semaphore  is a variable (such as a yes/no flag, or integer)
 that can be read or manipulated by any task, so  it can  gain sole  use of
 that resource.   When  a task tries to access a resource with a semaphore,
 the scheduler first makes sure that no other  task is  currently using the
 resource.   If the  semaphore is  not set to indicate that the resource is
 being used, then the task is  given access  to the  resource.   The system
 then lets  the task  set the  semaphore to  show that  a task is currently
 using the  resource.   After the  task is  finished, it  then restores the
 semaphore's setting to normal, so other tasks can use the resource that it


     One of the more touted uses  for multitaskers  has been  to download a
 file using  a terminal  program in  the background, while typing text in a
 word processor.  If a person using  this  setup  wanted  to  send  all the
 messages on  a BBS to the word processor, so as to read and answer them at
 his/her own convenience, a multitasking system  would need  a way  for the
 term program  to send the messages to the word processor.  Pipes provide a
 one-way method for a task to send data  a character  at a  time to another
 task.   They are  commonly used to take the output of one task and send it
 to another task as input.


     Queues are simply a larger type of pipe.  While pipes only send data a
 character at  a time from one task to another, queues allow whole segments
 of data (such as a picture or E-Mail message) to be sent from one  task to
 another.  As in pipes, this method is purely one way....

       Named Pipes:

     Named pipes  can be  considered a step above ordinary pipes or queues.
 Like queues, they allow tasks to send blocks  of data  to each  other, but
 unlike ordinary pipes, they allow data to be sent in both directions.  You
 could also do this with a pair of ordinary pipes, but Named Pipes are more
 efficient.   Named pipes  are especially useful in a LAN or multiuser sys-
 tem, as each computer in  such  networks  needs  to  communicate  with the
 others in this fashion.


     Signals, or  software interrupts,  tell tasks to immediately handle an
 asynchronous event, regardless of whatever it is doing at the time.

       Shared memory can also be used  for Interprocess  Communications, by
 letting two  programs use  a segment of memory to exchange data.  This has
 the advantages of speed  (as  this  would  essentially  be  a  direct data
 transfer) and  the ability  for both  programs to  directly manipulate the
 contents of this type of shared memory.

       In Part  I of  this series,  we covered  the inner  workings of most
 multitasking operating  systems, describing  what a multitasking scheduler
 must go through, while showing how  Interprocess Communications  help make
 applications (and indirectly, multitasking) more efficient.

       In  Part  II,  we  will  explore  the  different  implementations of
 multitasking, while showing some of the  other utilities,  such as virtual
 memory, that  are used  with multitasking to bring it more flexibility and
 power, and examining some of  the  problems  associated  with multitasking



       According to  a report recently released by the Software Publishers'
 Association, European  sales  of  all  DOS-based  software  written  by US
 companies has  increased by 61 percent during the 3rd Quarter of 1990.  In
 that period, Macintosh sales went up by 83  percent, and  overall European
 sales rose by 63 percent.  In making its report, the SPA used the combined
 sales figures of 32 major US Software companies in 18  software categories
 (including  spreadsheet,  word  processing,  and  DTP  software).    These
 companies earned over  $228  million  in  European  sales  during  the 3rd
 Quarter of 1990.

       The SPA  also found  that sales  of Microsoft Windows-based products
 rose by 243 percent.   SPA  representatives  also  stated  that  since the
 Macintosh is  a relatively  small segment  of the European computer market
 (though it is VERY  popular in  France), the  increased growth  in Windows
 applications  sales  indicates  that  Microsoft  Windows is now the second
 largest platform in the European computer industry (with DOS itself taking
 first place).   Among the more interesting findings of the SPA report were
 that Germany/Austria is now the  fastest-growing  market  in  the European
 computer industry for US firms....

 - Tokyo, Japan                  NEC TO SHIP SAMPLES OF 64meg  MEMORY CHIPS

       NEC  has  announced  that  it  will  begin  shipping  samples of its
 prototype 64-megabit DRAM chip by next summer.  NEC, who  plans to produce
 their  new  chips  at  an  existing  factory that now makes 4-megabit DRAM
 chips, says that their 64 Meg  DRAM chip  will have  an access  time of 40
 nanoseconds, and that it could be commercially available by Early 1992. If
 so, then NEC would be the first  company  in  the  world  to  ship  such a

       4-megabit DRAM  chips are only now beginning to gain widespread use,
 and 16-megabit DRAM chips  haven't been  available until  recently.  NEC's
 introduction of  a 64  Meg DRAM chip at this time could mean that high-end
 microcomputers may begin to have 64-128 Megs of RAM as  standard equipment
 by Early 1994.  Also, several other Japanese chipmakers (including Fujitsu
 and Toshiba) have indicated that they  will  be  announcing  64  Meg chips

 - Los Angeles, CA                       ASHTON-TATE LOSES DBASE COPYRIGHT!

       A  Federal  Court  has  dismissed the copyright-infringement lawsuit
 between Ashton-Tate  and  Fox  Software  by  declaring  that Ashton-Tate's
 copyright on the dBASE language is invalid.  In this suit, Ashton-Tate had
 claimed that Fox Software illegally used the dBASE language in its FoxBase
 database program,  which now  owns a significant share of the DOS database

       Wayne Ratcliff,  who  originally  wrote  dBASE  I,  had  developed a
 database program  called JPL/DIS  while working  for NASA's Jet Propulsion
 Laboratories in the 1970s.  During  this  lawsuit,  it  was  revealed that
 dBASE was  partly based  on JPL/DIS.  Curiously, Ashton-Tate didn't reveal
 this link between dBASE and JPL/DIS when it applied for a copyright on the
 dBASE  language.     Since   Ashton-Tate  "failed   to  disclose  material
 information to the United States Copyright  Office", the  judge ruled that
 the dBASE copyright was invalid.

       While Ashton-Tate  is preparing  to appeal the ruling, many industry
 analysts feel that this case has put the dBASE language  (one of  the most
 commonly  used  computer  languages)  in the Public Domain.  Interestingly
 enough, Ashton-Tate is now  being sued  by companies  who, having licensed
 the dBASE language, are now claiming that Ashton-Tate defrauded them. This
 ruling could  also  affect  Lotus's  copyright  infringement  case against
 Borland, since 1-2-3 is based on Visicalc.


                    :HOW TO GET YOUR OWN GENIE ACCOUNT:

      To sign up for GEnie service: Call: (with modem) 800-638-8369.

               Upon connection type HHH (RETURN after that).
                         Wait for the U#= prompt.

                 Type: XTX99587,CPUREPT then, hit RETURN.

                       **** SIGN UP FEE WAIVED ****

           The system will now prompt you for your information.

               -> NOW!  GENIE STAR SERVICE IS IN EFFECT!! <-


 > The Flip Side STR Feature?                    "...a different viewpoint"

 ctsy GEnie

                    A LITTLE OF THIS, A LITTLE OF THAT

 by Michael Lee

 I'm  sure  that the thousands of loyal ST PageStream  users  have  been
 wondering what has happened to PageStream 2.0.  Here's a compilation of
 some  recent posts from the Soft Logic Round Table on Genie that  might
 shed some new light on the subject....

    From Jay Pierstorff....
 Roughly  2/3rds of the PageStream source code is non-machine  specific.
 That  means,  that Deron wanted to get the major bugs out of the  Amiga
 version before porting it over to the ST.  No sense in porting a  bunch
 of bugs! The other 1/3 of the code is specifically filling the needs of
 each  machine.  Deron  is  now working on the ST  version  as  well  as
 finishing  up  work on the current Amiga version.  It will  shortly  be
 turned over to the beta testers to start hammering on.  There is no way
 to know exactly how long all this will take.  Deron will NOT release it
 until  it  is  ready!  However,  since  much of  the  code  is  already
 completed, we may not have as long a wait as previous versions.

 Amiga  Version  2.1 is the last version (for the Amiga)  until  the  ST
 version is completed...A few months ago we were saying that the work on
 ST 2.O would be "Real Soon Now".  That meant it is a "planned"  project
 but is not being worked on,  and a version for Beta Testers isn't  even
 close!  Well I can't say that now...don't feel ignored.  ST version 2.0
 has  never been closer to reality than it is today.  With most  of  the
 code being completed on the Amiga,  we may be very surprised to see how
 quickly the ST version is finished!

 You  can understand Softlogiks position.  They don't want a repeat  the
 events of history. Remember? Everyone voted to accept a beta version in
 lieu of receiving the real thing (version 1.50)?  Then the pressure was
 on!  The complaints,  the customer service line was swamped with people
 demanding a working version etc. etc. They don't want to ship a product
 that is not working properly.  They don't want to release a time  frame
 for  completion,  in case it takes longer.  You don't want them to  use
 your  money  for 6 months until they can deliver your  upgrade  do  ya?
 (speaking of which, Zoomracks III is about due isn't it? I ordered mine
 a long time ago)

    From Mike Loader...
 SL  has not announced a release date for version 2 ST.  2.1 Amiga  will
 come out first.  2.1 will fix outstanding problems with 2.0 and make it
 easier  to  create the ST version.  Just because there  have  been  two
 releases  for  the  Amiga  before version 2  ST  doesn't  mean  SL  has
 forgotten about the ST.  It didn't make sense to port 2.0 to the ST and
 then have to make changes in both versions to correct bugs.  Easier  to
 correct the bugs and then port. The code is virtually identical, so all
 development  is  done  at once.  It's done on the  Amiga  because  they
 shipped 68030's first. Simple as that. If Atari had the TT out first...

 ...SL  just doesn't want to set an official date,  because  every  time
 they do that and miss it,  they catch flak.  Then again,  if they don't
 set  a date they catch flak.   ISD has been promising a new version  of
 Calamus since Noah built his ark.  When was ISD's last update? When did
 they start promising the new version of Calamus?  Long before 2.0 if  I
 recall.  They've  released  minor fixes,  but the new  version  is  not
 available.   Do you want to bet they are not spending time on an  Amiga
 version as well right now?

    From Nevin Shalit...
 No  way  is it a "this is it" situation for the Atari version  of  Page
 Stream.  PageStream 2.0 for the ST will be out as soon as possible.  No
 estimate on dates, however.  Hey, PageStream is not the only one. Folks
 have been waiting for a LONG time for the new version of Calamus and it
 still is not out.  These are complicated programs and it takes a  while
 to  get  them ready for release...PageStream/ST 2.0 will  be  released,
 have no fear...!


    From Wayne Buckholdt (SofTrek) on Genie...
 The number of changes made from Turbo ST,  version 1.82 to version 1.84,
 made a patch program impractical. If you've already paid $5 to update to
 version 1.8 or 1.82,  you can send in your original Turbo ST disk for  a
 free upgrade to version 1.84.  In general, it is SofTrek's policy not to
 charge  for bug fixes.  However,  if you are upgrading from  an  earlier
 version of Turbo ST (1.0, 1.2, 1.4, or 1.6), you can get the latest 1.84
 version by sending in your original disk plus $5 U.S.  (check,  cash  or
 money order).


    From Doug Williams on Genie...
 SIPs are basically like SIMMs,  but instead of a "card-edge"  connector,
 they have a row of pins and plug into a SIP socket.  BTW, SIP stands for
 Single-Inline-Package; basically half a DIP which has 2 rows of pins.


 Remember  our  column  from last week when we were  discussing  the  new
 Gadgets 68030 accelerator board?   Well, it's ready and available!!  The
 following  is an introduction by Dave Small and some  general  questions
 and answers...

        Gadgets "SST" 68030 Accelerator and Memory expansion board

    After  all  the work of the previous months,  it gives me  a  lot  of
 pleasure to finally announce the pricing and specs of the Gadgets  "SST"
 68030  accelerator  board and memory expansion  board.  Readers  of  the
 Gadgets  "Newsletter-Herald"  will be receiving  this  same  information
 (with more details) shortly; that newsletter is being duplicated now.

    The pricing is structured around some rather expensive components. In
 these components, "Speed costs money -- how fast do you want to go?". We
 wanted fair pricing, so we went with this approach.

    I'm very,  very pleased to tell you that,  as I promised I would try,
 the board sells for well under $1000. In fact, $799 will get you started
 into life in the fast lane.

    Here's the pricing details:

    Board:  This  is  required,  along with one of  the  three  following
 options. This board has everything but the speed-sensitive components on
 it. It costs $599.

    It plugs in where your 68000 used to plug in;  yes,  you must  remove
 your old 68000.  The board has sockets for a 68030, 68881/68882 floating
 point unit, and most importantly, *8* sockets for SIMMs. You can plug in
 up  to 8 1-megabyte SIMMs (about $40 each) into the board,  yielding  12
 total  megabytes  in a Mega-4!  (The board cannot be used  as  a  simple
 memory expansion, without the 68030, however.)

    Next,  we give three options for processor. We strongly encourage you
 to buy your own RAM,  as you'll see;  it's inexpensive and we don't need
 to handle it, and have to pass on a price increase, to you.

    Option A) is a 16 Mhz 68030.  You add your own RAM (again,  about $40
 per megabyte). You *must* add 4 megabytes at a time; this is because the
 RAM is configured as 32-bit RAM,  with each SIMM 8 bits.  This option is
 meant for the budget-minded buyer; you can get basically into the 68030,
 then add RAM as your budget allows.  Also, you can increase the speed of
 the processor later.   This option costs $200;  together with the board,
 it's $799 total.

    Option B) is  a  16  Mhz  68030,  with 4  megabytes  of  RAM  already
 installed.  In a Mega-4,  this would give you 8 megabytes total of  RAM.
 (I'm  trying  to emphasize that this RAM is *added* to  what's  in  your
 machine,  and does not replace your machine's RAM). This option is meant
 for  people who don't want to bother with SIMMs,  and  costs  $460.   So
 together  with the board,  it's $1059 total.   (As you  can  see,  we're
 encouraging you to buy your own SIMMs.)

    Option C) is  the  rock-and-roll option.  This gives you a  *32*  Mhz
 68030,  a 68882 floating point processor, and 4 megs of RAM to which you
 can easily add another 4 megs,  for $800.  Together with the board, this
 is $1399.

    We may add more options later, as well!

    Board design is by George Richardson; none of Jim Allen's 68030 board
 technology whatsoever is used.  Many people don't know,  so I'll briefly
 mention,  that Jim and Gadgets split some time ago,  in mid-summer, over
 what I'd term "creative differences".  Gadgets and Jim are presently  in
 the  final stages of negotiating a return of advance fees paid  to  Jim;
 we're hoping to sign off on the contract any day now, when it comes back
 to us,  and settle things up. George also did the MegaTalk design and is
 a GEnie "frequent user".  (*grin*)

    At present,  the board is only for Mega-ST owners.  However,  we  are
 remedying  that as quickly as possible for you 520/1040  owners;  I  own
 several 520's as well,  and want them to zoom too. I can't estimate time
 until  I can announce that option until George gets over his New  Year's
 hangover (*grin*).

    To change back to "68000 mode", you must unplug the 68030 and plug in
 a supplied 68000 chip.  This isn't a lot of  fun,  admittedly;  however,
 designing the board to have both 68000 and 68030 would be  prohibitively
 expensive, in our view.

    The board also features the "George" connector,  which is a  complete
 32-bit  33  mhz expansion connector for all sorts of  interesting  addon
 cards we have up our sleeves,  but are too modest to discuss now.  Gosh,
 wouldn't  it be nice if someone did a fast-RAM color video card...did  I
 say that? No.

    The  board  is  supplied  with  an Atari TOS  on  it  that  is  68030
 compatible.  TOS 1.4 and below are not 68030 compatible; this is because
 Atari used some space saving techniques to fit TOS into 192K of chips --
 which saved you beaucoup $$. The new TOS is 256K long.

    Why it's the way it is --

    We did much thinking on what ST owners needed,  based off what  we've
 seen  at many shows and online on several systems.  The two things  that
 became clear were a) more memory and b) more speed.

    More memory is pretty obvious; applications from page layout to sound
 digitizing are starting to run out of headroom inside of 4 megabytes.  I
 know,  4  megabytes seemed a lot a few years ago;  it isn't anymore  for
 many applications.  Digital sound at 44-odd Khz eats up RAM in a  hurry,
 for  instance,  as  do bitmapped images in page  layout,  saved-up  desk
 accessories in memory,  or multiple programs in memory (like  Revolver).
 And  heck,  everyone  can  use  a 5 or so  megabyte  RAMdisk  for  those
 compiles,  right?  Spreadsheet users should particularly enjoy having 12
 megs of RAM onhand.  With the price of SIMMs at around $40 per  megabyte
 (per SIMM -- I have seen prices higher and lower,  so it's about  fair),
 it seemed a good idea to add 8 SIMM sockets to the ST.

    On  "more  speed",  the 68000 processor is limited to 16 mhz  by  its
 designers.   Apparently,  it can be pushed a bit higher than  that,  but
 it's  unreliable  and causes intense chip  heating.  Anywho,  the  68030
 *starts* at 16 Mhz and goes up from 50 Mhz at the moment. The
 price gets steeper as the speed goes up, however.

    The  68030  features  many  optimizations  (for  instance,   shifts),
 "thinks" 4 bytes at a time instead of 2 in the 68000,  has an  important
 on-chip 512 byte cache (data & instruction),  and the all-important MMU,
 which  allows  real magic in memory manipulation.  Look  for  some  very
 interesting software using the MMU.   Incidentally,  we did not go  with
 the  brand-new  68040  because  of cost  (awesome)  and  known  problems
 interfacing it to 68000-style machines.

    The  8 megabytes of SIMM memory is physically mapped at  $0100  0000,
 which means,  at the 16 megabyte border. With the MMU, the memory can be
 logically  mapped to anywhere we like,  which allows bigtime  fun.  This
 mapping matches that of the Atari TT machine,  by the way,  which really
 was  an  accident;  we chose that location before learning of  the  TT's
 specs!  However,  it  means  that TT software that  takes  advantage  of
 fastRAM will take advantage of our board's RAM,  too,  which is the sort
 of  coincidence I really like.  (The TT features either 4 or 16 megs  of
 RAM at this same location, depending on what type SIMM you use.)

    Why did we go with fastRAM?  Well, it sort of fell out naturally when
 we decided to give ST users the ultimate memory expansion ...

    It all works like this.  In the ST,  the up-to-4 megs of memory built
 in is shared between the 68000 processor and video, 50-50. You might say
 it's  16 Mhz memory,  with 8 Mhz going to CPU and 8 Mhz going to  video.
 Anyway,  ANY access to this memory gets slowed down to 8 Mhz;  you can't
 kick ] video off the memory there. (Remember on the 8-bit computers, how
 going  to graphics 7 or 8 would slow the processor -- and turning  video
 off sped it up? Same kind of thing).

    When we added memory,  we decided to make it as fast as possible  for
 the 68030.   This means,  you make it 32-bits "across" so the 68030  can
 grab that much in one request, you isolate it from video access so it is
 not slowed by video request,  and if you really try,  you make it burst-
 mode  ready,  which  is  a special 68030 thing  where  instructions  are
 fetched  at  far  higher speed than normal -- if  you  comply  with  its
 requirements. We complied.

    What this means for you is when running in fastRAM,  on either TT  or
 the Gadgets SST,  you get very good performance compared to running  out
 of video RAM.  While I am not a benchmark fan, as a "for instance", on a
 32  Mhz  unit,  you get between 2-3 X speed increase  with  Quick  Index
 benchmarks when running in fastRAM;  that's why we call it fastRAM.  Add
 to  that  the 68030's native speed in that mode,  and its  internal  512
 bytes of cache, and we see 800% -- 8 times -- the speed of the ST, going
 up  to  9  times in MOVE.L instructions,  and 15  times  (!!)  in  shift

    FastRAM  *is* fast because it is dedicated to the  68030,  and  other
 chips  can't kick the 68030 out of fastRAM,  as they can do in normal  8
 Mhz RAM.  Hence, fastRAM has a few restrictions on it; for instance, you
 can't  display a video image directly from fastRAM,  nor do disk DMA  to
 it.  However,  in my opinion, this is no big deal. That's what the low 4
 megabytes  of  RAM  are *for* -- and if you need to do  disk  access  to
 fastRAM,  you  use ST RAM as an in-between point.  The 68030  is  highly
 efficient at moving lots of data fast in block- copies. To the end user,
 all this means that it's no sweat.

    Some programs will work directly with fastRAM with no changes. Others
 will  not.  Hence whether or not a program loads into fastRAM  when  you
 double-click  on it,  or whether it also uses fastRAM for  memory  block
 requests,  can be configured for each additional programs.  If you  find
 something that breaks with fastRAM,  no big deal -- set it to load in ST
 RAM  and  don't  worry about it.   With many  programs  already  working
 directly in fastRAM,  and with the TT encouraging developers to make the
 slight  changes necessary for the ones that break,  we don't  foresee  a
 problem, just lots of fun.

    Should  you run a program in ST RAM,  well,  to be honest  with  you,
 beware.  IF  the program "caches" nicely,  it will run  very  fast;  our
 benchmarks show around 7-8 times faster than an ST.  If the program does
 NOT  "cache" nicely,  it will not be much faster than an ST at  all!  We
 can't  predict  which programs will do what;  some keep things  in  nice
 tight loops, which cache ok, others spread out all over the place, which
 slows down bigtime.  For instance,  when running in Mac emulation  under
 Spectre, the drawing routines cache nicely; you'll see quite a "snap" in
 performance  in  Mac  mode.   (Even  in  ST  mode,  screen  updates  are
 instantaneous from the desktop).

    We  do not include a "cache" memory with the SST.  This was  a  major
 design decision.  We are very familiar with caches;  for instance, I own
 both a T-16 and ADSpeed accelerator,  which have 16K caches (and 16K  of
 memory to make the cache work, for 32K total). The static RAM chips used
 in  caches  are  very  expensive,  and we wanted this  board  to  be  as
 inexpensive  as humanly possible;  caches are very program-dependent  in
 function  (some work great,  some break great);  there is ALREADY a  512
 byte cache built into the 68030; and finally, and best of all, according
 to our measurements,  the 8 megabytes of memory in our SIMMS *match* the
 speed  of cache memory,  through George's careful tuning of  the  memory
 channel.  Why settle for 16K of cache memory when you can get 8,000K, so
 to speak.

    Anywho,  that's our baby,  the 68030 SST. It gives you the ability to
 put  12  megabytes of RAM into your ST and accelerate it  to  very  high
 speeds  (certainly,  speeds that are very competitive with the  industry
 today;  of the Mac II line, only the 40 Mhz IIfx, at $10K or so, outruns
 the SST).  We see it as "doorstop insurance";  it keeps your ST  speedy,
 gives  snappy performance,  is quite TT compatible in its setup (a  good
 thing  with  coming  TT  applications),   and  gives  you  the  best  ST
 compatibility we could do.

    Atari says that about 80% of its software library works on the TT. We
 see no reason our board will differ from that figure.  In fact,  we have
 learned a thing or two from fixing Mac programs that break on Spectre to
 try  on this board in software to bring the percentage even  higher,  if

    One note --

    There's  been a disturbing trend recently towards  "developer  wars";
 this  refers  to open sniping and complaints from  competing  developers
 about their products.   I've seen it and regard it as destructive to the
 ST  market  as a whole.  Gadgets is committed to NOT  engaging  in  said
 "developer  wars".  Even  though  there  is  competition  in  the  68030
 accelerator market,  we feel that our product is strong enough for us to
 just state the facts,  and let the informed user make the decision. I've
 given  the  board  specs as best as I know them and as  best  as  I  can
 translate them from techno into English; I'm sure I've forgotten a thing
 or  two,  and will answer any questions.  But please,  we've stated  our
 decision  philosophy,  and  why this board is the way  that  it  is;  we
 welcome discussion, but let's keep it at an informational level, please.

    I  would like to thank the many,  many people that showed up for  the
 initial "68030" discussion conference just one year ago,  and tell  them
 that  we're here,  partly as the result of the enthusiasm shown for  the
 idea a year ago.   (The same thing happened on Spectre,  by the  way.  I
 recommend  the idea of holding a conference for product ideas  to  other
 developers).  The people who have supported Gadgets' products have given
 us  enough  seed  money to give you more and  better  products,  and  we
 appreciate it very much.

    We project availability of the SST in first quarter 1991,  and that's
 not a "flexible first quarter", either. The board design is finished; it
 needs  to  go  through a Beta test to uncover  anything  we  might  have
 missed,  but SST boards have been up and running since before the  WAACE
 show in October, where we showed it running for the first time.

    We  felt that giving you this information was in the best  spirit  of
 the  Christmas  holidays;  we  want you to know  that  good  things  are
 happening with the ST.

    Merry Christmas, people, and Happy New Year!

    These   notes  are  not  copyrighted  except  to  the   usual   GEnie
 restrictions;  feel  free to reprint them according to GEnie  guidelines
 for same.

    -- thanks, Dave Small

    Engineer & dishwasher, Gadgets by Small, Inc.

    Questions from Nevin Shalit on Genie...
    Is  this  a user-install or a dealer install,  and will  you  do  the
 install if there is no good local dealer? (for a fee, of course).

    Can you buy just the $599 board and buy your own 33 mhz 68030 and RAM
 or do you have to buy one of the 3 configurations?

    What  about folks (like me) who have a strange jumper that goes  from
 the 68000 to the blitter?  I never knew why that was there in the  first

    RE: your hinted fast RAM video board--this would be for making things
 like PGStream redraw faster, no? Are things like DTP redraw sped up with
 your board or do they still go at the slower ST speed?  That's the  MAIN
 thing I want: faster redraw with PGS..!

    Answers from Dave Small...
    With  an installation the complexity of this one (e.g.,  pulling  the
 68000),  we  prefer  someone  with a fair amount of  experience  do  the
 installation.  Dealer installation is preferred and we can refer  people
 if there's no dealer close by.

    Yes,  you can just get the board and install your own 68030 and  RAM.
 (See, I knew I was forgetting something in the notes...)

    The blitter fix is integrated into the hardware,  as I understand it.
 (In other words, that'll come off for good at install time.)

    Fast RAM video board is still a hint; I hate to talk about stuff that
 is  still  in  development.  Essentially,  if your  program  resides  in
 fastRAM,  all  the calculations and work to make the draw go on at  high
 speed,  and only the actual access to write the video data goes on at ST
 speed.  (The Atari people don't like me calling it "slow speed", *grin*,
 so it's "ST Speed").  Thus you'll see substantial improvement by loading
 PGS into fastRAM and running it.

    I don't know PGS' buffer allocation scheme, so I don't know right off
 if it leaves video buffer alone,  or allocates memory for a new one.  If
 it  leaves  things alone,  then all buffers can also be  allocated  from
 fastRAM, and will really make the program into a buzzsaw.

    You're quite welcome on the questions; thanks for reminding me on the
 "bare board" offer.  We just don't know how many people have access to a
 68030 chip;  if you do,  so much the better.  (Hmm, I wonder if Motorola
 will get lots of "Sample" requests shortly. Grin.)


 Until next week....


 > CHRISTMAS! STR FOCUS?            ".......A familiar tale, in a new age!"

                        THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS

        'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the ship
               Not a circuit was buzzing, not one microchip;
               The phasers were hung in the armory securely,
             In hopes that no aliens would get up that early.
             The crewmen were nestled all snug in their bunks
              (Except for the few who were partying drunks);
             And Picard in his nightshirt and Bev in her lace,
             Had just settled down for a neat face-to-face...
             When out in the halls there arose such a racket,
         That we leapt from our beds, pulling on pants and jacket.

                 Away to the lifts we all shot like a gun,
            Leapt into the cars and yelled loudly, "Deck One!"
        The bridge Red-Alert lights, which flashed through the din,
                 Gave a lustre of Hades to objects within.
          When, what, on the viewscreen, should our eyes behold,
         But a weird kind of sleigh, and some guy who looked old.
            But the glint in his eyes was so strange and askew
                 That we knew in a moment it had to be Q.

              His sleigh grew much larger as closer he came.
          Then he zapped on the bridge and addressed us by name:
              "It's Riker! It's Data! It's Worf and Jean-Luc!
                It's Geordi! And Wesley, the genetic fluke!
             To the top of the bridge, to the top of the hall!
               Now float away! Float away! Float away all!"
            As leaves in the autumn are whisked off the street,
            So the floor of the bridge came away from our feet,
                And up to the ceiling our bodies they flew,
          As the captain called out, "What the hell is this, Q?!"
             The prankster just laughed and expanded his grin,
               And, snapping his fingers, he vanished again.

             As we took in our plight and were looking around,
           The spell was removed, and we crashed to the ground.
             Then Q, dressed in fur from his head to his toe,
                Appeared once again, to continue the show.
                    "That's enough!" cried the captain,
                        "You'll stop this at once!"

              And Riker said, "Worf! Take aim at this dunce!"
                "I'm deeply offended, Jean-Luc," replied Q,
              "I just want to celebrate Christmas with you."
           As we scoffed at his words, he produced a large sack.
             He dumped out the contents and took a step back.
         "I've brought gifts," he said, "just to show I'm sincere.
             There's something delightful for everyone here."
                He sat on the floor and dug into his pile,
            And handed out gifts with his most charming smile:
             "For Counsellor Troi, there's no need to explain.
                 Here's Tylenol-Beta for all of your pain.
          For Worf I've some mints as his breath's not too great,
                And for Geordi LaForge, an inflatable date.
              For Wesley, some hormones, and Clearasil-Plus;
                For Data, a joke book; for Riker, a truss.
               For Beverly Crusher, there's sleek lingerie,
        And for Jean-Luc, the thrill of just seeing her that way."
           Then he sprang to his feet with that grin on his face
             And, clapping his hands, disappeared into space.
            But we heard him exclaim as he dwindled from sight,
            "Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good flight!"

         Based on "A Visit from St. Nicholas" by Clement C. Moore
                Adaptation Copyright 1990, Eric R. Rountree


 > The Future of the ST STR Feature?                " man's opinion"

                            THE FUTURE IS NOW!


 by Ralph Mariano

     Hey Ralph,  why did  you give  those guys  a platform to say all those
 neat things about the IBM and MAC machines??  Traitor!   There  goes Ralph
 again... destroying  Atari's asbestos undies!  These are just a few of the
 more 'benign remarks' I have heard and read  in the  past few  weeks.  Its
 utterly amazing  how when  an Atarian  reads or hears what he/she may con-
 strue as a disparaging remark about  an  Atari  Computer,  one  can almost
 hear; "dem's fightin' words buddy!"

     My  Daddy  pointed  out  one  little  ole  thing to me awhile ago.. he
 said... "Son,.. when you wish to make a point and have it stick, there are
 three important  things that  must occur  in the  proper sequence.  First,
 allow the issue to be fully  explored or  explained.   Second and probably
 the most  important, keep  your mouth  shut until  the others are all done
 making noises.  Third, rely solely  upon facts  and established  trends if
 the issue(s) are expansive.

     With  that  jewel  of  enlightenment  behind us.. let's look at what's
     really being said by those who "seem" to be putting Atari down;

     The first question is; are they really putting Atari down  or are they
     venting their frustration?

     The  next  question  is  easy, are truthful illustrations and examples
     being employed to demonstrate the points being made?

     The last question to explore is; have they fully represented the facts
     faithfully or  have the  facts been  presented is  a rather lop-sided,
     "see it my way only" manner?

     Many times in the past, I have read the "so-called"  put-downs and see
 most of  them as  an opportunity to amplify the benefits designed into the
 ST computer that most of us take for granted.  Often, I  wonder why others
 don't see  this opportunity  and jump  at the  chance to use it to Atari's
 advantage.  All that most folks  seem to  do is  get ready  for a  'war of
 words' instead of allowing the machines to duke it out, feature for featu-
 re, with benefits compared as a bonus.  Shall we take a closer look?

     You bet we will!  Over the course  of the  next few  weeks, I  plan to
 hand out  a few  lumps and  take a few too.  The point of the series is to
 show the "Full Story" not  an  emotional,  self  serving  blast  that only
 gratifies the  writer for  a short  while.   The ST is still the BEST KEPT

     The Atari  ST computer, the 520, the 1040 and of course the MEGA, (The
 Flagship) have been around for quite a while now.   What a  concept the ST
 was when  it was first announced and released!  It was so far ahead of its
 time that most of the correspondents  attempting to  write about  the "new
 marvel in  computing" were  forced to  go the  "hands on route" instead of
 <fluffing it> from spec  sheets as  many were  accustomed to  doing during
 that era.

     The ST  was so  far ahead  of the  rest of the pack that many insiders
 felt it was a serious threat to big blue.   The most  amazing tidbit, that
 holds more  truth to  it today  than it did then, is the simple truth that
 the ST and its latest relatives still are,  in many  cases, well  ahead of
 their competition.   Think  about this  for a moment, most of the features
 presented in the original ST are just now being matched by Big  Blue!  How
 many years  later is  that?   How long did it take them?  Mind you, I said
 matched NOT surpassed.  I  welcome  enthusiastic  reader  participation in
 this series, send in your comparisons between the ST line and the 'conten-
 ders'. (your choice)  Together, we'll  take  a  long,  hard  look  at this
 alleged progress that has many newfies and some old timers concerned.

     Send your essays to:

       ST.REPORT on GEnie ~ 70007,4454 on CIS ~ RMARIANO on Delphi.
                                Or, through
                    FNET to Node 350 ~ Fido 1:112/35.

               Now is your chance to stand up and be heard!
                       Take advantage of this offer.



                                                     THE TICKERTAPE

 by Michael Arthur

 Week I

      The price  of Atari stock went down 1/8 of a point on Monday, to $2 a
 share.  It stayed at the same price from Tuesday  to Thursday.   On Friday
 the price of Atari stock went up 1/8 of a point, ending the week at $2.125
 a share.  On December 7, the price of Atari stock was down 1/8  of a point
 from its price on November 30.

       Apple Stock was up 5 3/4 points from Friday, November 30, 1990.
            Commodore Stock was up 1 1/4 points from 11/30/90.
              IBM Stock was down 1 1/8 points from 11/30/90.

               Stock Report for Week of 12/3/90 to 12/7/90

 STock|    Monday   |   Tuesday  |  Wednesday  |  Thursday  |    Friday   |
 Reprt|Last      Chg|Last     Chg|Last     Chg.|Last    Chg.|Last      Chg|
 Atari|  2     - 1/4|  2    ---- |  2     ---- |  2    ---- |2 1/8   + 1/8|
      |  16,600 Sls |            |             |            | 236,800 Sls |
  CBM |10 1/4  + 3/8|10 1/4  ----|10 1/2  + 1/4|10 3/4  +1/4|11 1/8  + 3/8|
      | 513,200 Sls |            |             |            | 201,600 Sls |
 Apple|38 1/8       |38 1/2  +3/8|40 1/8       |41 1/4      |42 1/2 +1 1/4|
      |       +1 3/8|            |       +1 5/8|      +1 1/8|2,943,400 Sls|
  IBM |113 3/8  -1/4|114 3/4     |114 5/8  -1/8|111 1/2     |112 1/2   + 1|
      |             |      +1 3/8|             |      -3 1/8|1,909,400 Sls|

   '#' and 'Sls' refer to the # of stock shares that were bought that day.
                  'CBM' refers to Commodore Corporation.

 Week II                                           COMPUTER STOCK DOWNTURN

      The price  of Atari stock went down 1/4 of a point on Monday, but was
 back up 1/8 of a point on Tuesday, to $2 a share.  On Wednesday, the price
 of Atari  stock went  down 1/8  of a  point, and went up 1/8 of a point on
 Thursday.  On Friday the price of Atari stock stayed the same,  ending the
 week at $2 a share.  On December 14, the price of Atari stock was down 1/8
 of a point from its price on December 7.

      Apple Stock was down 2 5/8 points from Friday, December 7, 1990.
              Commodore Stock down 1 3/8 points from 12/7/90.
              IBM Stock was down 1/4 of a point from 12/7/90.

               Stock Report for Week of 12/10/90 to 12/14/90

 STock|   Monday   |   Tuesday  |  Wednesday  |  Thursday  |    Friday    |
 Reprt|Last    Chg.|Last    Chg.|Last     Chg.|Last    Chg.|Last      Chg.|
 Atari|1 7/8   -1/4|  2     +1/8|1 7/8   - 1/8|  2    + 1/8|  2      ---- |
      | 25,600 Sls |            |             |            |  39,800 Sls  |
  CBM |11 3/4  +5/8|11 1/8  -5/8|11 1/2  + 3/8|11 1/8  -3/8|9 3/4  - 1 3/8|
      |  418,700 # |            |             |            | 492,500 Sls  |
 Apple|41 3/4  -3/4|  40  -1 3/4|39 5/8  - 3/8|40 3/4      |39 7/8   - 7/8|
      |2,237,400 # |            |             |      +1 1/8| 777,400 Sls  |
  IBM |113 3/8     |112 7/8 -1/2|114 3/8      |112 7/8     |111 1/4 -1 5/8|
      |        +7/8|            |       +1 1/2|      -1 1/2|1,435,200 Sls |

   '#' and 'Sls' refer to the # of stock shares that were bought that day.
                  'CBM' refers to Commodore Corporation.


 > STR Mail Call?                               Reader Comments and Replies

 ctsy CIS

 Read action !
 : 24518 S14/ST REPORT
     15-Dec-90  01:39:03
 Sb: #24394-new article
 Fm: Bill Halvorsen 70347,1713
 To: Pat Augustine 73670,2200

     ST Report is doing a service as a  reporting vehicle  for ST  users in
 all aspects;  that includes helping people who wish to broaden their hori-
 zons to include platforms they are not familiar with if  all they've known
 is Atari  (I was  one of them, and my LaserJet not functioning with the ST
 hurried my switch to the Clone world).  This series of articles would have
 been of  great value  to me when it became Clone time; fortunately I had a
 great salesman who was very careful  not  to  undersell  me  in  the Clone
 capabilities even though I was totally unfamiliar with the territory.

     With the  capabilities afforded  now through  WordPerfect, Windows and
 soft fonts through my LaserJet I could never  even consider  going back to
 Atari.  I feel it is very important for people to learn of alternatives to
 the machine to which they have invested heavily  in time  and money  - all
 the while  the reality  is changing  too; software  for the  PC's is quite
 capable, though monstrously expensive.    Kudos  to  Darek  and  Ralph for
 helping those  with ST's  learn what  else is  out there; learning is what
 this is all about.   I  see a  great deal  of loyalism  at all  costs, and
 close-mindedness when  it concerns Atari, but perhaps it is, at last, time
 to help everyone be aware of alternatives; the time has come.

 : 24524 S14/ST REPORT
     15-Dec-90  19:22:46
 Sb: #24518-new article
 Fm: Pat Augustine 73670,2200

 Well, I seem to be outvoted on this, so I will make one final comment, and
 then shut up about it.

 Your comment  is exactly  my point. You have left the Atari community. For
 good (except for coming back to read ST  Report, for  no apparent reason).
 How many  others will  read the  article, decide  Darek is right, and also
 leave the Atari community, thus weakening the user base even  more than it
 already  is,  and  hastening  the  end  of Atari support?  In the end, the
 article merely helps destroy the computer that the magazine is supposed to
 support. When all Atari users have abandoned their ST's and bought clones,
 will ST  Report suddenly  become IBM  Report? Or  will ST  Report cease to
 exist entirely,  and if  so, doesn't  running the article only hasten it's
 own doom?

 The article is perfectly valid, and  this weeks  was most  interesting. My
 only point  was that  an ST magazine telling it's readership to buy clones
 is a lot like a Ford magazine telling it's readers to buy Chevy.

 However, it appears I have missed the writing on the  wall, and,  from the
 responses I  have gotten,  the general  consensus is  not whether to buy a
 clone, but rather which clone to buy, and how to work it.  The decision to
 abandon Atari  has, apparently,  already been made. In that case, then, it
 makes perfect sense for ST Report to ease  the "transition  pains" of it's
 readers in their move to other platforms, in these, it's final months.

 I, however,  will not  be buying  a DOS-box,  regardless of their eventual
 cost, and if Atari support does disappear, my  next computer  will undoub-
 tedly be  a UNIX box (admittedly a religious decision), and given the cost
 of those, I would be interested in a magazine that shows how to extend the
 life of  the hardware/software  I have  already invested  in. Wonder where
 I'll find one? (You know, there is  STILL  a  very  active  TI  99/4A user
 support base  in this   country.  If THEY  can do  it, I  don't see why WE

  Thank you for your time, and your comments.

 Mr. Augustine,

     I must admit you  leave little  room for  thought of  a positive Atari
 future when one examines the 'flavor and tone' of your replies.  It is sad
 to see that you insist on attacking STReport for carrying  varied and well
 informed original  articles.   Perhaps we  should fall  into the apologist
 genre` or maybe adopt the 'Peter Pan', 'Mary Poppins' "everything  is won-
 derful"  attitude?    The  true  underscore  is to relate what is actually
 happening in this platform good, bad, or indifferent.

     Your comments are painfully absent concerning the Unix,  Lynx, and the
 Portfolio coverage.   In  fact, you seem to be doting on complaining about
 the IBM  coverage.   Perhaps we  (both you  and the  rest of  us) march to
 different drummers.   Reality  is reality  and that's the bottom line.  As
 stated at The New England Atari Fest, the last thing we need do is aggres-
 sively encourage  Atari to  be the  computer company  it is not.  Atari is
 making 'all the right moves'.  Atari is the ST, STe and TT as they are the
 Portfolio and  Lynx in the USA, not a Mac, IBM, TI99 or any other "dream".
 Atari will prevail in its own market in  spite of  the continued comparis-
 ons.   Sure there  are the  emulators (plenty) but I use my machine in its
 native mode 99% of the time and still marvel at its power and ease of use.

     The current condition of  the Atari  US marketplace  has aided  in the
 creation of the atmosphere most all are very capable of seeing.  Certainly
 the users, developers, writers  and dealers  had little  or nothing  to do
 with why the market and dealer base is presently in this state of affairs.
 On the other hand, lack of product, advertising and solid public relations
 by Atari (wasn't Salerno going to cure all of these ills?) has had a great
 deal to do with the way the situation appears.   Again, changes  are being
 made and  the folks  who are currently involved give every indication that
 we will see a  leaner, better  and more  represented Atari  than ever seen

 Pat Writes....
     "My only  point was that an ST magazine telling it's readership to buy
     clones is a lot like a  Ford  magazine  telling  it's  readers  to buy

 ** Where...  in the  entire issue  does STReport itself recommend the pur-
 chase of anything over that of an Atari  product??   Please... be accurate
 if not, at least be fair.....

 Pat Writes...
     "In that  case, then, it makes perfect sense for ST Report to ease the
     "transition pains" of it's readers in  their move  to other platforms,
     in these, it's final months."

 ** Nowhere  in the  issue does STReport imply or explicitly delve into the
 "transition" or even hint  at making  the changeover  to another platform.
 Nor does STReport allude to or vaguely imply that an end is near.   Unfor-
 tunately, making blatant assumptions and accusations are nothing more than
 shameless attempts to "kill the messenger".

 Pat Writes...
     " When  all Atari  users have  abandoned their ST's and bought clones,
     will ST Report suddenly become IBM Report?

 ** QUITE the assumption..   The Atari ST userbase  is far  from abandoning
 anything!  As far as what or where STReport will be in the future, near or
 far, that Sir will be told only by the passage of time as will  the future
 in general.   STReport  fully anticipates the ST and its descendants to be
 around for quite some to come.   Assumptions  were tidily  described by an
 old crusty military man a few years ago.  Please, dissect the word assume.

 Pat Writes...
     "I would be interested in a magazine that shows how to extend the life
     of the hardware/software I have already invested in. Wonder where I'll
     find one? "

 ** STReport continually amplifies exactly what you are alluding to  .. the
 upgrading and  enhancement of all our existing ST equipment.  The acceler-
 ator memory expansion boards and 1.44mb drive enhancements are among those
 recently covered to one degree or another.

     In closing, speaking as an editor, I truly value your thoughts but ask
 that you  review your  comments before  you send  them as  it is painfully
 obvious they  are emotionally  charged.   You make valid points but in the
 same vein,  you are  demanding that  we practice  "CENSORSHIP SUPREME" and
 write only  of Atari  and then  only the  glowing, warm and comfy items...
 that sir, simply put, is utterly impossible.  By the way, the Atari ST and
 soon the  TT is, has and will be our computer of choice.  STReport and its
 staff will also be heavily involved in the massive learning curve demanded
 by  Unix  on  our  new  TT030  units.   Please remember never to assume...
 assumptions present situations that will usually result in the greatest of

                          Happy Holidays to All!!



 > STR Portfolio News & Information?                  Keeping up to date...

                         THE ATARI PORTFOLIO FORUM

 On CompuServe

 by Walter Daniel  75066,164

     There were  lots of messages this week about pocket modems.  There was
 some concern that line-powered models might not generate enough voltage to
 function, but  at least  one forum  member reported  that his line-powered
 modem did in fact work with his Portfolio and serial interface.  Some 2400
 baud pocket  modems sell  for $150  or even less!  DIP, the UK designer of
 the Portfolio, makes a bus modem  that plugs  directly into  the expansion
 slot (i.e.,  no serial  interface needed).   The DIP modem is expensive by
 U.S. standards, nor is it approved for sale here.

     Many messages were exchanged about the TDD1 and TDD2 3.5 inch portable
 floppy drives  designed for  use with the Tandy Model 100 and 102 notebook
 computers.  It seems that this battery-powered drive has an  RS-232 inter-
 face, so  some intrepid users were experimenting with connecting TDD1/TDD2
 drives to their Portfolios.  The TDD2 sells for around  $100 used  and can
 store  about  200k  on  a  floppy  disk.   The experimenters are trying to
 create the necessary software drivers that  would enable  the Portfolio to
 control the disk drive.  I'll pass along any news about this effort.

     Don Messerli  uploaded a  program to view graphics files on the Portf-
 olio (PGSHOW.ZIP in library 1).   The ZIP  file includes  six sample files
 for  viewing.    Don  promises  a  graphics file editor for desktop PCs, a
 screen dump utility, and some machine language routines.  I  see all sorts
 of possibilities:  page-flipping animation, help screens with mixed graph-
 ics and text, and other goodies.  These  programs will  be free,  so check
 them out.

     Other uploads:   Lane  Lester uploaded a text file (LODTRM.ZIP in lib-
 rary 1) that explains how to  get  XTERM2  into  a  Portfolio  through the
 serial interface for the first time.  Not suggested for the easily frustr-
 ated!  David Hayden uploaded a  text  file  that  describes  "Dave's Dream
 Portfolio" (DREAM.PF  in library 1).  His idea was to stimulate discussion
 on how to improve the current generation Portfolio  and solicit  ideas for
 the next version.  Finally, download FT4LPT.ARC to hack FT.COM in order to
 use your second printer port of your desktop  PC to  communicate with your

     It is  Christmas time,  so let's  talk about  games!   I've heard that
 Atari isn't really keen on games for the Portfolio--they'd prefer that you
 buy a  Lynx.   I'm not real big on arcade games, so I'm grateful that many
 "thinking" games have appeared  for the  Portfolio.   There are  a few ar-
 cade-type games,  though.   Look in library 4 (Entertainment).  BJ Gleason
 is the primary culprit.  He  keeps uploading  compact, addictive  games to
 the forum, some of the recent ones I've mentioned in this column.  Portris
 (PRTRIS.ZIP) is a Tetris-like game that you play with the Portfolio turned
 sideways.   BJ's "thinking" games include Othello (OTHELL.EXE), Mastermind
 Life (LIFE.EXE), and others.

     Card  games  include  CASINO.COM,  a blackjack game, and REDDOG.TXT, a
 PBASIC version of Acey-Deucy.  Portfolio Score Four  (PFOUR.ARC) resembles
 the game  in which  you and  the computer  try to get four pieces in a row
 (across, vertically, or diagonally) first.   Tetrad7 (TETRAD.EXE)  is ano-
 ther  Tetris-like  game,  but  this  one  allows you to choose the way the
 pieces fall (handy for lefties).  There are many more  games in  the libr-
 ary, so search to find your diversion of choice.

     I'll be  gone the  next two weeks for vacation.  I will be back in the
 January 11th issue.  As always, please forward any Portfolio news to me in
 the forum.

                                   Have a wonderful and safe holiday!


 > The TT & TIME STR FOCUS?                             Time is of Essence!

                     GIVING THE TT A FIGHTING CHANCE?

 by Larry Karowski

      A little  over two years ago, Atari announced that the TT would be on
 sale in a few months.  A few months after that they announced the  STE was
 due out  any day.   Seeing that Atari was going to completely update their
 computer line and thinking that our computers would  soon be  outdated and
 the value of them would go way down, we took most of them to an Atari fest
 and sold them.  Our employees switched over  to using  Macs, and  PC 286's
 until the  new Ataris  came out..  Funny thing happened.  They all decided
 they liked the new Macs and the new PC's.   This year,  our firm purchased
 new PC 386's rather than continue to wait for the still unavailable TT's.

     Five years  ago when  the first ST came out, myself and a number of my
 fellow employees  were  instantly  and  uncontrollably  in  love  with it.
 Unfortunately, three years later, there still wasn't a quality word proce-
 ssor available and GDOS was still in its  embryonic stages.   Thus,  I was
 forced to purchase a PC to successfully achieve my word processing duties.
 But I still kept an ST as a  solution for  many other  tasks.   The ST was
 indeed still  better than  the PC in graphical power and entertainment.  I
 had Windows 2.0 (Needed it for Micrographic Designer) but it  was entirely
 unacceptable.  It was no where near as good as GEM.

      Microsoft has  introduced Windows 3.0 and now the PC world will never
 be the same.  After checking out Windows 3.0 and  the programs  written to
 run under  it, and  then looking  over the  TT and the obvious lack of NEW
 software being written for use with it.  The decision was obvious  at this
 time.   I can  not think  of a  single thing  that GEM  can do better then
 Windows 3.0.  But I can think of several that Windows can  do, for instan-

     With Windows  3.0 you  are able  load a number of programs into memory
 and switch between them.  You are able  to multi-Task.   Example;  you can
 type a letter in Word for Windows and save it to your fax program.  Switch
 to the fax program and tell it to send the fax, the line is  busy.. so you
 tell the  fax program  to keep trying. With one click on the mouse you are
 back into Word doing something else.

     Recently, I became involved in doing a manual for a new ST  program we
 had written.   I loaded Gem into a window and ran the PC version of the ST
 program  when I had the screen I wanted I click on Print Screen, (that put
 an image  of the  screen into  the clipboard)  I then switched to Word and
 pasted the screen into the manual..  I  put  about  10  pictures  into the
 manual in  about 20 min.. (sized and with a border).  You can also connect
 programs.. You can put a graph from Excel into a Word for  Windows docume-
 nt,  then  load  excel  into  memory  and change the numbers in the graph,
 Windows 3 will automatically change the graph in the word document.

     With the clipboard in windows you can cut and paste between any Window
 application.    You  can  load  two  or three applications into memory and
 switch back and forth between them moving information easily between them.

     At this time, the power presented  by Windows  on a  PC is  rather ex-
 traordinary when  compared to the existing GEM platforms in use by the Mac
 and the ST.  In time, with the full arrivals of the  Mega STe  and the TT,
 provided  major  software  development  begins  to take place (wasn't that
 Salerno's job?) thus propelling  the  new  arrivals  to  the  forefront of
 computing solutions, these new machines will then be more than competitive
 with their contemporaries.   The heartbreaker  is how  many companies have
 the resources  to wait  for Atari?   Competition  is keen  in all computer
 related fields.  Now, time is  money and  if a  task takes  that much less
 time to  be completed on a competitor machine, because of software support
 and file interchangability, the answer thus becomes painfully obvious....


 > TRUST BUSTING STR FOCUS?  "..a bad mistake in pursuit of a worthy cause"

                         NO LOOK & FEEL LOCK-DOWN!

                     Against User Interface Copyright

     The European Commission has a proposal  to legislate  interface copyr-
 ight  throughout  Europe.    The  results  if this goes through would be a
 crushing rash of lawsuits like what you see now in the US.

     If you don't want these new restrictions imposed  on you,  you need to
 get active now--at least for a few minutes, to write some letters.

     An organization  called the  European Committee for Interoperable Sys-
 tems is working to prevent the new restrictions.   Contact  James Beery at
 23  Albemarle  Street,  London  W1X  3HA, ENGLAND; 44-71-4081943. But this
 organization does  not accept  individuals as  members, at  least not cur-
 rently.    I  am trying  to work  out with them a way for them to work in-
 dividuals into their campaign.  When I find out, I will tell rick@cstr.ed-

     Meanwhile, the US government trade negotiator is pressing for more new
 restrictions, and  so is  a group  of large  American companies, including
 IBM, DEC, and Apple, which have formed a group to lobby for them.

     Here is  what The  Economist had  to say about the original version of
 this measure, on page 15 in the March 10 issue:

     "A slip in Brussels could put European software  writers in  thrall to
     big American  computer makers.  The European Commission is set to make
     a bad mistake in pursuit of a worthy cause.   It has  drafted a direc-
     tive to standardise the terms of software corpyright across Europe.
     Its effect  will be  almost as  if, in  the early days of electricity,
     power companies had been give  the  right  to  decide  what appliances
     could be plugged into wall sockets."

     The directive  was originally  written to established copyright on all
 kinds of interfaces and to ban disassembly entirely.   If  implemented, it
 would  destroy  ordinary  programmers'  chances  of  writing  software  in

     On July 11, the  European parliament  considered the  measure and made
 changes in an attempt to address these problems; but the changes do not do
 the job.  For  example, one  change extends  explicitly to  interfaces the
 principle  that  copyright  covers  only  detailed  expression rather than
 ideas.  This will not prevent interface copyright,  since judges  may rule
 that the  commands of  a program constitute expression--as happened in the
 recent Lotus case.  The only way to avert interface copyright in Europe is
 for the law to state explicitly that interfaces are excluded from copyrig-

     The July 11 changes likewise included a half-measure for the  issue of
 disassembly.  It would forbid disassembly except for the purpose of making
 a program to work with the program being disassembled, and the information
 learned would have to be kept secret.  Today, disassembly is legal for any
 purpose, and there is no public interest in restricting it at all.

 The person responsible for this proposal is:

                         Jean-Francois Verstrynge
                                 DG 3/D/4
                  Commission of the European Communities
                             200 Rue de la Loi
                              1049 Bruxelles

     If you want to block the proposal, write to him to (1)  explain to him
 why this will hamper software development and provide the users with fewer
 useful choices, and (2) indicate your personal opposition  as a  member of
 the industry this is supposed to "protect".

     Mr. Verstrynge is now telling people who complain about these problems
 that the July 11 changes have solved them.  So  tell him  that the changes
 were insufficient  and interface  copyright must be unambiguously elimina-
 ted, for detailed commands as well as for the general style of a program.

     And tell him that disassembly should not be limited in any way: if you
 have a copy of a program, then you have a right to read it and see what it
 says.    Whatever  you  learn  from   disassembly  about   the  ideas  and
 functionality of  the program, you should be free to communicate to anyone
 or use for any purpose, as you are today.

     A letter to the European parliament would also be a  good idea.   They
 may have  to vote  on this,  and most of them will have no idea what to do
 except to follow the recommendation of Mr. Verstrynge unless you  start to
 educate them.

     To help  you explain  more clearly,  here is  a position  paper of the
 League for Programming Freedom, which discusses all the  arguments against
 user interface  copyright.  ** Note that writing to Mr. Verstrynge in your
 own words, making use of the arguments you find either  here or elsewhere,
 will be  more effective  than simply  sending a  copy of this. ** However,
 mailing a copy of this along with your letter to the parliamentarian might
 be a  good idea;  he is  not going  to receive numerous copies of the same
 thing, and one of them will surely help.


                    {Against User Interface Copyright}

                    The League for Programming Freedom

     In June 1990, Lotus won a  copyright infringement  suit against Paper-
 back Software,  a small  company that implemented a spreadsheet that obeys
 the same keystroke commands used in  Lotus 1-2-3.   Paperback  was not ac-
 cused  of  copying  code  from  1-2-3---only of supporting compatible user
 commands.  Such  imitation  was  common  practice  until  unexpected court
 decisions in recent years extended the scope of copyright law.

     Within a  week, Lotus  went on  to sue Borland over Quattro, a spread-
 sheet whose usual interface has only a few  similarities to  1-2-3.  Lotus
 claims that  these similarities  in keystroke sequences and/or the ability
 to customize the interface to emulate 1-2-3 are enough to infringe.

     More ominously, Apple Computer has sued Microsoft and  Hewlett Packard
 for implementing  a window  system whose displays partially resemble those
 of the Macintosh system.  Subsequently  Xerox sued  Apple for implementing
 the Macintosh system, which derives some general concepts from the earlier
 Xerox Star  system.   These suits  try to  broaden the  Lotus decision and
 establish copyright on a large class of user interfaces. The Xerox lawsuit
 was dismissed because of  a  technicality;  but  if  their  planned appeal
 succeeds, a monopoly of unprecedented scope could still result.

     And  Ashton-Tate  has  sued  Fox  Software for implementing a database
 program that accepts the same programming language used in dBase.  This is
 a radical  demand, but  in the current judicial climate, the threat cannot
 be dismissed.

     While this paper addresses primarily the  issue of  copyright on spec-
 ific user  interfaces, most of the arguments apply with added force to any
 broader monopoly.

                         WHAT IS A USER INTERFACE?

     A user interface is what you have to learn to operate a  machine.  The
 user  interface  of  a  typewriter  is  the  layout of the keys.  The user
 interface of a car includes a steering wheel for turning,  pedals to speed
 up and slow down, a lever to signal turns, etc.

     When the machine is a computer program, the interface includes that of
 the  computer---its  keyboard,  screen  and  mouse---plus   those  aspects
 specific to  the program.   These  typically include  the commands, menus,
 programming languages, and the way data is presented on the screen.

     A copyright on a user interface means a government-imposed monopoly on
 its use.   In  the example  of the  typewriter, this  would mean that each
 manufacturer would be forced to arrange the keys in a different layout.

                         THE PURPOSE OF COPYRIGHT

     In the United States,  the Constitution  says that  the purpose  is to
 "promote  the  progress  of  science  and the useful arts."  Conspicuously
 absent is any  hint  of  intention  to  enrich  copyright  holders  to the
 detriment of the users of copyrighted works.

     The Supreme  Court made  the reason for this absence explicit, stating
 in {Fox Film vs.Doyal} that "The  sole interest  of the  United States and
 the  primary  object  in  conferring  the  [copyright] monopoly lie in the
 general benefits derived by the public from the labors of authors."

     In other words,  since  copyright  is  a  government-imposed monopoly,
 which interferes  with the  freedom of the public in a significant way, it
 is justified only if the benefit  to the  public exceeds  the cost  to the

     The spirit of individual freedom must, if anything, incline us against
 monopoly.    Following  either  the  Supreme  Court  or  the  principle of
 freedom,  the  fundamental  question  is:  what  value does user interface
 copyright offer the public---and what price would we have to pay for it?


     The developers of the Star,  the  Macintosh  system,  1-2-3  and dBase
 claim that  without interface copyright there would be insufficient incen-
 tive to develop such products.  This is disproved by their own actions.

     Until 1986,  user interface  copyright was  unheard of.   The computer
 industry developed  under a  system where  imitating a  user interface was
 both standard practice and lawful.  Under this  system, today's plaintiffs
 made  their  decisions  to  develop  their  products.  When faced with the
 choice in actuality, they decided  that  they  did,  indeed,  have "enough

     Even though  competitors were  free to  imitate these interfaces, this
 did not prevent most of the  original products  from being  successful and
 producing  a  large  return  on  the  investment.    In fact, they were so
 successful that they became {de facto} standards.   (The Xerox  Star was a
 failure due to poor marketing even though nothing similar existed.)

     Even  if  interface  copyright  would increase the existing incentive,
 additional improvements in user  interfaces would  not necessarily result.
 Once you  suck a  bottle dry,  more suction won't get more out of it.  The
 existing incentive is so great that it may well suffice to motivate every-
 one who  has an  idea worth  developing.  Extra incentive, at the public's
 expense, will only increase the price of these developments.


     The proponents of user interface copyright claim that it would protect
 small  companies  from  being  wiped  out  by large competitors.  Yet look
 around: today's  interface  copyright  plaintiffs  are  large, established
 companies.   User interface copyright is crushing when the interface is an
 effective standard.  However,  a  small  company  is  vulnerable  when its
 product  is  little  used,  and  its  interface  is little known.  In this
 situation, user interface copyright won't help the small company much.

     Imagine a  small company  with 10,000  customers: a  large company may
 believe there  is a  potential market  of a  million users, not reached by
 the small company, for a similar product.  The large  company will  try to
 use its marketing might to reach them before the small company can.

     User interface copyright won't change this outcome.  Forcing the large
 company to develop an  incompatible interface  will have  little effect on
 the  majority  of  potential  customers---those  who  have not learned the
 other interface.  They will buy from the large company anyway.

     What's more, interface copyright will work  against the  small company
 if the  large company's  product becomes  an effective standard.  Then new
 customers will have an additional reason to prefer  the large  company. To
 survive,  the  small  company  will  need to offer compatibility with this
 standard---but, due to user  interface copyright,  it will  not be allowed
 to do so.

     Instead  of  relying  upon  monopolistic measures, small companies are
 most successful when they rely on their own  inherent advantages: agility,
 low overhead, and willingness to take risks.


     The Copyright  system was designed to encourage diversity; its details
 work toward this end.   Diversity  is the  primary goal  when it  comes to
 novels, songs,  and the  other traditional  domains of copyright.  Readers
 want to read novels they have not yet read.

     But diversity is not  the goal  of interface  design.   Computer users
 want consistency  in interfaces  because this promotes ease of use.  Thus,
 by standardizing street signs and  symbols  on  automobile  dashboards, we
 have made  it possible for any driver in the world to operate any car with
 virtually no instruction.  Incompatibility in interfaces is a price  to be
 paid when worthwhile, not a benefit.

     Significantly better  interfaces may  be hard  to think  of, but it is
 easy to invent interfaces which are merely different.  Interface copyright
 will surely  succeed in  encouraging this sort of "interface development."
 The result will be gratuitous incompatibility.


     Under the regime of interface copyright,  there will  be no compatible
 competition  for  established  products.    For  a  user  to  switch  to a
 different brand will require retraining.

     But  users  don't  like  to  retrain,  not  even   for  a  significant
 improvement.  For  example,  the  Dvorak keyboard layout, invented several
 decades ago, enables a typist to type faster  and more  accurately than is
 possible with  the standard  "QWERTY" layout.  Nonetheless, few people use
 it. Even new typists don't learn  Dvorak, because  they want  to learn the
 layout used on most typewriters.

     Alternative products  that require  such an effort by the consumer are
 not effective competition.  The monopoly on the established interface will
 yield in  practice a  monopoly on  the functionality accessed by it.  This
 will cause higher prices  and less  technological advancement---a windfall
 for lucky businesses, but bad for the public at large.


     If  there  had  been  a  50-year  interface copyright for the steering
 wheel, it would have expired not long ago.  During the span of the copyri-
 ght,  we  would  have  got  cars steered with joysticks, cars steered with
 levers, and cars steered with pedals.   Each  car user  would have  had to
 choose a  brand of  car to  learn to  drive, and  it would  not be easy to

     The expiration of the  copyright  would  have  freed  manufacturers to
 switch to the best of the known interfaces.  But if Ford cars were steered
 with wheels and General Motors were  steered with  pedals, neither company
 could change  interface without  abandoning their old customers.  It would
 take decades to converge on a single interface.


     The plaintiffs like to  claim  that  user  interfaces  represent large
 investments on their part.

     In fact,  the effort  spent designing the user interface of a computer
 program is usually small compared to  the cost  of developing  the program
 itself.   The people who make a large investment in the user interface are
 the users who train to use it.  Users have spent much more time  and money
 learning to  use 1-2-3 than Lotus spent developing the entire program, let
 alone what Lotus spent develop the program's interface {per se}.

     Thus, if investment justifies ownership, it is the users who should be
 the owners.   The users should be allowed to decide---in the marketplace -
 who may use it.   According  to {Infoworld}  (mid January  1989), computer
 users in general expect user interface copyright to be harmful.


 User  interface  copyright  discriminates  against  freely redistributable
 software, such as freeware, shareware and public domain software.

 Although it {may} be possible to  license an  interface for  a proprietary
 program, if  the owner is willing, these licenses require payment, usually
 per copy.  There is no way to collect this payment for a freely redistrib-
 utable program.   The result will be a growing body of interfaces that are
 barred to non-proprietary software.

 Authors of these programs donate to  the public  the right  to share them,
 and sometimes  also to  study and change their workings.  This is a public
 service, and one less common than innovation.  It does  not make  sense to
 encourage innovation  of one  sort with means that bar donation of another


     The scope of interface copyright is so vague and potentially wide that
 it will  be difficult  for any  programmer to  be sure  of being safe from
 lawsuits.  Most programs need an  interface, and  there is  usually no way
 to  design  an  interface  except  based  on  the ideas you have seen used
 elsewhere.  Only a great genius  would  be  likely  to  envision  a usable
 interface  without  a  deep  resemblance  to current practice.  It follows
 that most programming projects will risk an interface infringement suit.

     The spirit of "Millions for defense,  but not  a cent  for tribute" is
 little honored  in business  today.   Customers and  investors often avoid
 companies that are targets of suits;  an eventual  victory may  come years
 too  late  to  prevent  great  loss  or  even bankruptcy.  Therefore, when
 offered a choice between paying royalties and being  sued, most businesses
 pay, even if they would probably win.

     Since this  tendency is  well known, companies often take advantage of
 it by filing or threatening suits they are  unlikely to  win.   As long as
 any interface  copyright exists,  this form  of extortion will broaden its
 effective scope.


     Due to the evolutionary  nature  of  interface  development, interface
 copyright will actually retard progress.

     Fully  fleshed-out  interfaces  don't  often arise as {tours de force}
 from  the  minds  of  isolated  masters.     They   result  from  repeated
 implementations, by  different groups,  each learning  from the results of
 previous attempts.  For example,  the  Macintosh  interface  was  based on
 ideas tried  previously by  Xerox and SRI, and before that by the Stanford
 Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.   The  Xerox  Star  also  drew  on the
 interface ideas  that came from SRI and SAIL.  1-2-3 adapted the interface
 ideas of Visicalc and other spreadsheets.  dBase drew on a program develo-
 ped at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

     This evolutionary  process resembles  the creation  of folk art rather
 than the way symphonies, novels or films are made.   The advances  that we
 ought to encourage are most often small, localized changes to what someone
 else has done.  If each interface has  an owner,  it will  be difficult to
 implement such  ideas.  Even assuming the owner will license the interface
 that is to be improved, the inconvenience and expense would discourage all
 but the most determined.

     Users often  appreciate small,  incremental changes that make programs
 easier or faster to use.  This means changes that  are upwards compatible,
 or affect only part of a well-known interface.  Thus, on computer keyboar-
 ds, we now have function keys, arrow keys, a delete key and a control key,
 which typewriters  did not have.  But the layout of the letters is unchan-

     However, such partial changes as this  are not  permitted by copyright
 law.   If any  significant portion  of the  new interface is the same as a
 copyrighted interface, the new interface is illegal.


     At the  1989 ACM  Conference on  Computer-Human Interaction, Professor
 Samuelson of  Emory School  of Law  presented a  ``mock trial'' with legal
 arguments for  and against  user interface  copyright, and  then asked the
 attendees---researchers and  developers of user interfaces---to fill out a
 survey of their opinion on the subject.

     The respondents overwhelmingly opposed  all aspects  of user interface
 copyright, by  as much  as 4  to 1 for some aspects.  When they were asked
 whether user interface copyright would harm or help the field,  on a scale
 from 1  to 5,  the average answer was 1.6.@footnote{See the May 1990 issue
 of the Communications of the ACM, for the full results.}

     The advocates of user  interface copyright  say that  it would provide
 better security  and income  for user  interface designers.   However, the
 survey shows that these supposed  beneficiaries  would  prefer  to  be let


     For a  business, "locking  in" customers may be profitable for a time.
 But, as the vendors of proprietary operating systems have found  out, this
 generates resentment and eventually drives customers to try to escape.  In
 the long run, this leads to failure.

     Therefore, by permitting user interface copyright,  society encourages
 counterproductive  thinking  in  its  businesses.   Not all businesses can
 resist this temptation; let us not tempt them.


     Monopolies on user interfaces do not serve the users and do not "prom-
 ote the  progress of  science and the useful arts."  User interfaces ought
 to be the common property of all, as  they undisputedly  were until  a few
 years ago.

                              WHAT YOU CAN DO

     Don't do  business "as usual" with the plaintiffs, Xerox, Lotus, Apple
 and Ashton-Tate.  Buy  from their  competitors instead;  sell their stock;
 develop  new  software  for  other  computer  systems  and  port  existing
 applications away from their systems.  Above all, don't work for the "look
 and feel" plaintiffs, and don't accept contracts from them.

     Join the  League for  Programming Freedom---a grass-roots organization
 of programmers and users opposing software patents and interface copyrigh-
 ts.    (The  League  is  not opposed to copyright on individual programs.)
 Annual dues are $42 for employed  professionals, $10.50  for students, and
 $21 for  others.   We appreciate activists, but members who cannot contri-
 bute their time are also welcome.

             Phone us at (617) 243-4091, send Internet mail to
                  {}, or write to:

                      League for Programming Freedom
                           1 Kendall Square #143
                               P.O. Box 9171
                            Cambridge, MA 02139

 Give copies of this paper to your friends,  colleagues and  customers.  In
 the United  States, write  to your  representatives and  to these Congres-
 sional subcommittees:

                House Subcommittee on Intellectual Property
                             2137 Rayburn Bldg
                           Washington, DC 20515

         Senate Subcommittee on Patents, Trademarks and Copyrights
                           United States Senate
                           Washington, DC 20510

 In Europe, the European Commission  is  proposing  to  institute interface
 copyright.  Express your opposition by writing to:

                         Jean-Francois Verstrynge
                                 DG 3/D/4
                  Commission of the European Communities
                             200 Rue de la Loi
                              1049 Bruxelles


 > STReport CONFIDENTIAL?                             "ATARI NEWS & EVENTS"

 - Sunnyvale, CA                                   CALLING ALL USERGROUPS!!

     As 1990  draws to  a close, I am working on the 1991 schedule for user
 group visits and shows. It would  be greatly  appreciated if  those of you
 that are  contemplating having  a show  in 1991 would let me know about it
 ASAP! I expect there will be  some conflicts,  and the  sooner we  work on
 resolving them, the better off we'll all be.

               Please try to observe some simple guidelines:

     Please schedule your event at least 30 days from any other event.

     Please schedule  your event  at least  90 days from any other event in
 your geographical area.  It's really rough on the developers  (and me!) to
 have to  come back to back to the same area.  It also hurts the attendance
 of the second show!!!   For  example, a  group in  Milwaukee called  me to
 tell me  about a  show they  planned to  do less  than 30  days before the
 Winsor/Washtenaw Show.  They had their date pretty  well set  in concrete,
 and were  not at  all happy when I objected to it.  They've chosen another
 date...the same weekend as CES in Chicago!!!  This time less than  30 days
 after the  Windsor show.  I'm concerned, I'm sure Pattie is concerned, and
 boy, you should see what this club is saying about me on their BBS!!!!

 Bottom line:
     Check with me for dates to avoid conflicts.  If your at all uncertain,
 please call me or send e-mail.  My voice number is 408-745-2052.

     So far,  I've heard  rumblings of  shows in  Vancouver, Chicago, Erie,
 Boston, and of course, WAACE and Glendale are already on the docket.   Add
 to that  the trade  shows, plus a few user group visits (Buffalo, Knoxvil-
 le, Asheville, Orlando, Santa Ana) and you've got a full calendar in short
 order!!!!   I've started  contacting some  of last years promoters like ST
 World, but with the holidays they might be slow to respond.

     Your cooperation will ensure  that we  have an  enjoyable 1991  for us
 all, Atari, users, and developers!!! Thanks in advance!


                                             Bob Brodie

 ps; having  said all of the above...let me also announce that I will be on
 vacation December 24 - January 4.  I'll be back  in the  office on January

 - Toronto, Canada                               RECAP OF RECENT NEWS ITEMS

 Atari (Canada) Corp. Announcements and News:
 Dec.  3, 1990    Atari announced a NEW price reduction on the 1040STe
                  to 699.00

 Nov. 20, 1990    A new monitor for the TT, the PTC 1426 will be
                  shipped shortly. The new monitor has a unique base that
                  integrates into the TT chassis. On the rear of the
                  monitor is a switch that changes the video to standard
                  VGA or the TT mode.

 Nov. 12, 1990    Atari showed the new Mega STe, the machine runs at
                  16MHz and is built around a similar TT type case in
                  an attractive gey color. The new Mega also incorporates
                  the VME bus for peripheral devices. The unit is expected
                  to arrive for shipment into the Canadian market in mid

 Nov. 12, 1990    Atari (Canada) Corp. displayed a full line of computer
                  products at the Cdn. Computer Show. The 32MHz TT, the
                  New Mega STe, and new monitors for the ST and TT were

 Oct. 30, 1990    A new monitor the TM194, 19 inch monochrome is announced
                  for the TT and will be available in limited supply in
                  early November. The retail price is 1495.00

 Oct. 30, 1990    The new TT color monitor (the PTC) is available in
                  limited qty. at a retail price of 895.00

 Oct. 30, 1990    Atari Canada has been made an official subsidiary
                  reporting directly to Sam Tramiel. Formerly, Atari
                  Canada Corp. fell under a North American management
                  structure.  Geoff Earle has been made the Managing
                  Director for Canada.

 Oct. 15, 1990    Atari Canada will shortly be announcing the names of
                  Canadian authorized TT dealers.

 Oct. 15, 1990    Atari Canada will expand the Music packages offered
                  in the 3rd quarter. We will continue to offer
                  520STfm and Casio keyboards. New software components
                  will be added.

 Oct. 15, 1990    Atari Canada will be reselling a new colour monitor
                  for the ST, the SC1435 includes stereo sound and
                  will be available at the end of October.

 Oct. 15, 1990    Atari Canada will be supplying ST promotions bundled with
                  NeoDesk. Two promotions include 520STfm, one with
                  a colour monitor. In addition 3 promotions are based
                  on the 1040STe one of which includes a monochrome
                  monitor and the other the new stereo colour monitor.

 Oct. 15, 1990    Atari is offering the Portfolio bundled with an
                  AC adaptor. Two peripheral bundles are available
                  which include the parallel adaptor/64K card, the second
                  bundle uses the card drive and a 128K card.

 August 24,1990   The originally announced clock speed of the TT has
                  been changed to 32MHz. Initial inventory for dealers
                  and developers is expected to arrive in October.

 August 22,1990   The Atari Corp. ON LINE service will be moving to
                  Datapak to reduce user long distance charges when
                  accessing the service.


 > CHRISTMAS IS COMING! STR InfoFile?                  .....Santa's Helpers


  ATARI CORPORATION                     Antic Direct
  1196 Borregas Avenue                  544 Second Street
  Sunnyvale, CA. 94086                  San Francisco, CA  94107
  (408) 745-2000                        (800) 234-7001
  Hardware - Software                   Psygnosis Games etc...

  ABCO Computer Electronics             Gribnif Software
  P.O. Box 6672                         P.O. Box 350
  Jacksonville, FL. 32221               Hadley, MA 01035
  (800) 562-4037                        (413) 584-7887
  Hard Disks & Supplies                 NeoDesk & Turbo C

  A & D Software                        ISD Marketing Inc.
  226 NW 'F' Street                     2651 John St., Unit #3
  Grants Pass, OR 97526                 Markham, Ontario, CA *L3R 2W5
  (503) 476-0071                        (416) 479-1880
  Universal Item Selector               Calamus, DynaCadd etc...

  Alpha Systems                         L & Y Computers
  1012 Skyland                          13644c Jefferson Davis H'wy.
  Macedonia, OH 44056                   Woodbridge, Va.  22191
  (216) 467-5665                        (703) 494-3444
  16 and 8 bit Support                  Atari products and Software

  Atari Interface Magazine              Step Ahead Software Inc.
  3487 Braeburn Circle                  496-A Hudson Street Suite F39
  Ann Arbor, MI 48108                   New York City, N.Y.  10014
  (313) 973-8825                        (212) 627-5830
  Atari Magazine and Monthly Disk       Tracker ST mailing/tracking system

  B&C ComputerVisions                   Mars Merchandising
  3257 Kifer Road                       1041b St. Charles Rd.
  Santa Clara, CA 95051                 Lombard Il.
  (408) 749-1003                        (817) 589-2950
  Atari Products & Supplies             Atari Products & Accs.

  Branch Always Software                Lantech
  14150 N.E. 20th St.                   PO Box R
  Bellevue, WA 98007                    Billerica, MA  01821
  (206) 936-6609                        (508) 667-9191
  Quick ST, Software                    10 Megabit Local Area Network

  Best Electronics                      Migraph Inc.
  2021 The Alameda Suite 290            200 S. 333rd St.
  San Jose,  CA  95126                  Federal Way, WA 98003
  (408) 243-6950                        (206) 838-4677
  THE Atari parts source & Supplies     Top Notch Graphical Products

  Computer Garden                       MicroTyme
  WestSide Mall                         4049 Marshall Road
  Edwardsville, PA  18704               Kettering, OH  45429
  (800) 456-5689                        (800) 255-5835
  Discount Software                     Discount Hardware & Software

  Carter Graphics & Computers           Practical Solutions Inc.
  914 W. Sunset Blvd.                   1135 N. Jones Blvd.
  St. George, UT 84770                  Tucson, AZ 85716
  (801) 628-6111                        (602) 322-6100
  Atari Products                        Atari support products

  CodeHead Software                     Prospero Software
  P.O. Box 74090                        100 Commercial St.
  Los Angeles, CA 90004                 Suite 306 Portland, ME 04101
  (213) 386-5735                        (207) 874-0382
  Software Products "Codekeys"          Software Products

  Comput-Ability                        Rio Datel Computers
  P.O. Box 17882                        3430 E. Tropicana Ave., #65
  Milwaukee, WI 53217                   Las Vegas, NE 89121
  (414) 357-8181                        (800) 782-9110
  Atari Products & Distributor          International Products

  CompuServe Information Service        San Jose Computers
  P. O. Box 20212                       640 Blossom Hill Road
  Columbus, OH 43220-0212               San Jose, CA 95123
  (614) 457-0802                        (408) 224-8575
  Online Services                       Atari Products

  Debonair Software                     Sideline Software
  P.O. Box 521166                       840 NW 57th Court
  Salt Lake City, UT 84152              Fort Lauderdale, FL 33309
  EL CAL The Math Machine               (305) 771-9035
  Atari Support Products                International Software Source

  D & P Computer                        SofTrek
  P.O. Box 811                          P.O. Box 5257
  Elyria, Ohio 44036                    Winter Park, FL 32793
  (800) 535-4290                        (407) 657-4611
  Atari Support Products                TurboST "The Software Blitter"

  Double Click Software                 ST Informer
  P.O. Box 741206                       909 NW Starlite Place
  Houston, TX 77274                     Grants Pass OR  97526
  (712) 977-6520                        (503) 476-0071
  Software Developer                    Monthly Newspaper

  Fast Technology                       Talon Technology
  P.O. Box 578                          243 N. Hwy. 101, Ste 11
  Amdover, MA 01810                     Solana Beach, CA 92075
  (508) 475-3810                        (619) 792-6511
  16Mhz 68000 Accelerator               Supercharger IBM Emulator

  Gadgets by Small                      Toad Computers
  40 W. Littleton Blvd.                 556 Baltimore Annapolis Blvd.
  #210-211, Littleton, CO 80120         Severna Park, MD 21146
  (303) 791-6098                        (301) 544-6943
  Spectre GCR MAC Emulator              Mass Storage devices & Atari Prod.

  Goldleaf Publishing, Inc.             WuzTEK Omnimon Peripherals
  700 Larkspur Landing Circle,          One Technology Dr. Bldg. 1E, #301
  Suite 199  Larkspur, CA 94939         Irvine, CA 92718
  (415) 461-5703                        (714) 753-9253
  WordFlair Document Processor          Atari support products

  Dr. Bobware                           Wiz Works!
  180 N. Hazeltine Avenue               P.O. Box 45
  Campbell, OH.  44405-1024             Girard, OH.  44420
                                        (216) 539-5623
  MVG & Modules  Graphics               Image Cat - MugShot!

  GEnie Information Services            Taylor Ridge Books
  401 N. Washington Street              P.O. Box 48
  Rockville, MD 20850-1785              Manchester, Ct.  06040
  (800) 638-9636                        (203) 643-9673
  Online Services                       Cmanship Complete 'C' programming

  ICD Inc.                              Soft Logik
  1220 Rock St.                         11131F S. Towne Sq.
  Rockford, Il. 61101-1437              St Louis, MO  63123
  (815) 968-2228                        (314) 894-8608
  Hardware Peripherals                  PageStream DTP Software


 > Hard Disks STR InfoFile?                     Affordable Mass Storage....

                      NEW LOW PRICES! & MORE MODELS!!
                             HOLIDAY SPECIALS!
                         ** EFFECTIVE  -> NOW! **

                      ABCO COMPUTER ELECTRONICS INC.
              P.O. Box 6672  Jacksonville, Florida 32236-6672
                                Est.  1985

                   Voice: 904-783-3319  10 AM - 4 PM EDT
                     BBS: 904-786-4176   12-24-96 HST
                    FAX: 904-783-3319  12 PM - 6 AM EDT


   All systems are complete and ready to use, included at NO EXTRA COST
                 are clock/calendar and cooling blower(s).

                 (you are NOT limited to two drives ONLY!)
                   (all cables and connectors installed)


                           Conventional Shoe Box
            Model        Description      Autopark       Price
            SGN3038      31Mb 28ms   3.5"    Y          419.00
            SGN4951      51Mb 28ms   3.5"    Y          519.00
            SGN6177      62Mb 24ms   3.5"    Y          619.00
            SGN1096      85Mb 24ms   3.5"    Y          649.00
            SGN6277     120Mb 24ms   3.5"    Y          889.00
            SGN1296     168Mb 24ms   3.5"    Y         1069.00
            SGN4077     230Mb 24ms   3.5"    Y         1669.00


         20mb #AI020SC   379.95              30mb #AIO3OSC   419.95
         50mb #AI050SC   449.95              65mb #AI065SC   499.95
                           85mb #AI085SC  $559.95
                        MEGA ST Internal Hard Drives

                      (500 - 600k per sec @ 23 -33ms)

                         FROM 30mb 28MS @ $419.00!
                      Ask about our "REBATE SPECIALS"




       * SYQUEST 44MB (#555)>> ABCO "44" << REMOVABLE MEDIA DRIVE *

          - ICD Utility Software        - 3' DMA Cable
          - Fan & Clock                 - Multi-Unit Power Supply
                          (1) 44 MB Syquest Cart.

                 --->> SPECIAL NOW ONLY __$ 719.00__ <<---
                        EXTRA CARTS:      $  79.50
                        DRIVE MECH ONLY:  $ 439.95

                       ***** for $75.00 LESS! *****

                       SPECIALLY PRICED ** $1329.00 **

         - Syquest 44 Model [555] and the following hard drives -
          50mb SQG51   $ 939.00           30mb SQG38    $ 819.00
          65mb SQG09   $ 969.00           85mb SQG96    $1059.00

           Listed above are a sampling of the systems available.
      Prices also reflect various cabinet/power supply configurations
    (over sixty configurations are available, flexibility is unlimited)

            *** ALL Units: Average Access Time: 24ms - 34ms ***

             LARGER units are available - (special order only)

                      *>> NO REPACKS OR REFURBS USED! <<*

       - Custom Walnut WOODEN Cabinets - TOWER - AT - XT Cabinets -
            * SLM 804 Replacement Toner Cartridge Kits $42.95 *
                          Replacement Drums; CALL
                   Keyboard Custom Cables Call for Info
                      ALL POWER SUPPLIES UL APPROVED

                       -* 12 month FULL Guarantee *-
                         (A FULL YEAR of COVERAGE)


                     DEALERS and DISTRIBUTORS WANTED!
                         please, call for details

                 Personal and Company Checks are accepted.

                        ORDER YOUR NEW UNIT TODAY!

           CALL: 1-800-562-4037   -=**=-    CALL: 1-904-783-3319
           Customer Orders ONLY               Customer Service
                                9am - 8pm EDT
                                Tues thru Sat


 > A "Quotable Quote"?                                    Ole Kris Kringle!

              Y       S   >*<        1
            R       A      ^           9
    v     R       M                      9
   >*<  E       T           /\------      0
    ^ M       S  v         '/\\#####\             v
            I   >*<       ')\/(######\           >*<
          R      ^       '##\/oo######--          ^        v
        H              _'####o##########\                 >*<
      C                )"   " "  "   "(##\                 ^
        v              ) " "   "  " " (###;                     _ _
       >*<             )"____"___"___"(##/                     /####\
        ^              (( ~~~\  /~~~ ))#/     v           -. /#######|
                      ()) ( o)||( o) ())*    >*<         (##\########|
   v                  (()  --    --  (()**    ^           |##|#######/
  >*<                (()((  .(  ).  ))(**             /\ /##########/
   ^               "(()())~~~~~~~~~~()()())          /. \##########/
                  "  ()(() ~~~^^~~~~  (()) "        /.  .\########/
                 ". .(        ^^    "   ) . "       /\ . .\####--     v
                 "     (   "            )   . "     /##\ .  \##/     >*<
   v           "   .  (     "     "     )   . "   /####\ ...\/        ^
  >*<         /#.      (       "       ) .     #\/######\  . /
   ^         /##  .   .( "          "  )   .   ##########\. /
          v /###        (  "   "      ).     . "#########/\/
         >*/#####"  .  .  (   "    " )     .   #########/       v
          /########          ^   ^ ^    .    "#########/       >*<
         |###########   .      .  .         ##########/         ^
         |##############"   .        .    ###########/   v
         |###################  .  .  ###############/   >*<
          ####################.     ###############/     ^
           ###################  .  .##############
            ##################.   . #############


 (ASCII art by Chris Fenn)

                        STReport Online Magazine?
     Available through more than 10,000 Private BBS systems WorldWide!
 STReport?           "YOUR INDEPENDENT NEWS SOURCE"       December 21, 1990
 16/32bit Magazine           copyright = 1990                   No.6.51
 Views, Opinions and Articles Presented herein are not necessarily those of
 the editors, staff, STReport?  CPU/STR?  or  ST  Report?.    Permission to
 reprint articles  is hereby granted, unless otherwise noted.  Each reprint
 must include the name of the publication, date, issue #  and  the author's
 name.  The entire publication and/or portions therein may not be edited in
 any way without prior written permission.   The  contents, at  the time of
 publication,  are    believed  to  be  reasonably  accurate.  The editors,
 contributors and/or staff are  not responsible  for either  the use/misuse
 of information contained herein or the results obtained therefrom.

Return to message index