ST Report: 22-Mar-96 #1212From: Bruce D. Nelson (aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 03/31/96-06:08:23 PM Z
- Next message by date: Bruce D. Nelson: "ST Report: 29-Mar-96 #1213"
- Previous message by date: Bruce D. Nelson: "ST Report 15-Mar-96 #1211"
- Return to Index: Sort by: [ date ] [ author ] [ thread ] [ subject ]
From: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson) Subject: ST Report: 22-Mar-96 #1212 Date: Sun Mar 31 18:08:23 1996 Silicon Times Report The Original Independent OnLine Magazine" (Since 1987) March 22, 1996 No. 1212 Silicon Times Report International OnLine Magazine Post Office Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32221-6155 STR Electronic Publishing Inc. A subsidiary of STR Worldwide CompNews Inc. R.F. Mariano, Editor Featured in ITCNet's ITC_STREPORT Echo Voice: 1-904-268-2237 10am-5pm EST STReport WebSite http://www.streport.com STR Publishing Support BBS THE BOUNTY INTERNATIONAL BBS Featuring: * 5.0GB * of File Libraries Mustang Software's WILDCAT! Client/Server BBS Version 5 95/NT Featuring a Full Service Web Site http://www.streport.com Join STReport's Subscriber List receive STR through Internet MULTI-NODE Operation 24hrs-7 days Analog & ISDN BRI Access 904-268-4116 2400-128000 bps V. 120-32-34 v.42 bis ISDN V.34 USRobotics I-MODEM NT-1 FAX: 904-292-9222 24hrs The Bounty STReport Support Central 1-904-268-4116 FNET. 620 : Leif's World 1-904-573-0734 FNET. 690 : PASTE BBS 1-206-284-8493 FNET. 489 : Steal Your Face BBS 1-908-920-7981 MNET - Toad Hall BBS 1-617-567-8642 03/22/96 STR 1212 The Original Independent OnLine Magazine! - CPU Industry Report - Net Hate Real - Zip Drive 1m Sold - MCI vs. AT&T - Virtual University - Canon Kyosei? - LapTop Sales Up - AOL WebSite #1 - Blaster 8X Kits - Internet Radio - People Talking - Atari Final Report? FTC TARGETS INTERNET FRAUD Telecom Bill Trial Begins! USR Offers Speakerphone STReport International OnLine Magazine Featuring Weekly "Accurate UP-TO-DATE News and Information" Current Events, Original Articles, Tips, Rumors, and Information Hardware - Software - Corporate - R & D - Imports STReport's BBS - The Bounty International BBS, invites all BBS systems, worldwide, to participate in the ITC, Fido, Internet, PROWL, USENET, USPOLNet, NEST, F-Net, Mail Networks. You may also call The Bounty BBS direct @ 1-904-268-4116. Enjoy the wonder and excitement of exchanging all types of useful information relative to all computer types, worldwide, through the use of excellent International Networking Systems. SysOps and users alike worldwide, are welcome to join STReport's International Conferences. ITC Node is 85:881/250, The Fido Node is 1:112/35, Crossnet Code is #34813, and the "Lead Node" is #620. All computer enthusiasts, hobbyist or commercial, on all platforms and BBS systems are invited to participate. WEB SITE: http//www.streport.com CIS ~ PRODIGY ~ DELPHI ~ GENIE ~ BIX ~ FIDO ~ ITC ~ NEST ~ EURONET ~ CIX ~ USENET USPOLNET CLEVELAND FREE-NET ~ INTERNET ~ PROWL ~ FNET ~ AOL IMPORTANT NOTICE STReport, with its policy of not accepting any PAID advertising, has over the years developed the reputation of "saying it like it really is". When it comes to our editorials, product evaluations, reviews and over-views, we shall always keep our readers interests first and foremost. With the user in mind, STReport further pledges to maintain the reader confidence that has been developed over the years and to continue "living up to such". All we ask is that our readers make certain the manufacturers, publishers etc., know exactly where the information about their products appeared. In closing, we shall arduously endeavor to meet and further develop the high standards of straight forwardness our readers have come to expect in each and every issue. The Staff & Editors Florida Lotto - LottoMan v1.35 Results: 3/16/96: 5 of 6 numbers with 3 matches in 1 play >From the Editor's Desk... Yessir. these are interesting times we live in. AT&T seems to feel they have an earth shattering idea in their "ever so special" free Internet Access offer. The truth is the majority of users who've taken advantage of AT&T's extraordinary offer haven't a clue about the "unlimited access" each and every month many of the ISP's offer. Besides, most have no idea what an ISP is to begin with. AT&T's approach to the Internet has been checkered with typical "Bell-Head" thinking.. Its no wonder the "alternatives" have managed to catch up to them and in some cases run rings around them. Can you say MCI?? People need to take a moment or two out of their perceived busy schedules and take a good look around the industry. For example; some of my PET PEEVES. z If Netscape doesn't wake up over the grief they're causing with this constant "In Beta COW" they call a browser.. its huge and if some one were to "uninstall" it. it cripples the system by taking system dependent files along with it on its way out. Great programming. One can see an implosion at Netscape if they don't get off their collective pompous butts and begin to listen to the general userbase. z Of course there are a number of other, very prominent companies suffering from the same height sickness. That is they're sitting far too long on their ultra high ivory pillars of "we know best" or, "we've outsourced that product and must now wait for our contractor to deliver". Two situations, in particular, come to mind. 1. What's with the number of either dumb or simply arrogant programmers who insist upon installing everything to drive "C" and in a "Program Files" folder on top of that! It is bad. how bad is it?? How about ..if one were to tell the installer program to go to the second hard drive in the IDE drive chain. Care to wager that the program loses its data files, can't find them, won't write to a partition on a drive that "far out" from "Drive "C"? No jokes here, this is serious and quite true. The very same program when installed on Drive "C" behaved perfectly. When this factoid was brought to the programmer's attention back in early January, we were told at that time; "this issue would be addressed in the next update". Has there been an update? Not Yet. One can only wonder how many others are finding "strange problems" with this software. 2. When is one of the more enterprising software geniuses going to come up with a truly strong, accurate and easy to use Registry Maintenance, Backup and Editing Program for Win95/NT? 3. One of the biggest names in the camera, printer, scanner business is really behind the proverbial "eight ball" at this time with no relief in sight. There is an article in this issue about this matter. Don't miss it. Spring Comdex is not too far off. The new products this year tend to be aimed toward speed, speed and more speed. Memory prices are dropping and an entirely new level of high performance motherboards are about to hit the shelves. Summer may be for the outdoors lovers but I'm willing to bet a good deal of them will be indoors a bit more building their new "bleeding edge" machines for the coming year. Got any "Pet Peeves" of your own?? Let us know about them. We'll put in our Pet Peeves area.. you can be certain the "powers that be" will be looking to see what they can do to alleviate the "Peeve Levels". Of Special Note: http//www.streport.com STReport is now ready to offer much more in the way of serving the Networks, Online Services and Internet's vast, fast growing site list and userbase. We now have our very own WEB/NewsGroup/FTP Site and although its in its early stages of construction, do stop by and have a look see. Since We've received numerous requests to receive STReport from a wide variety of Internet addressees, we were compelled to put together an Internet distribution/mailing list for those who wished to receive STReport on a regular basis, the file is ZIPPED, then UUENCODED. Unfortunately, we've also received a number of opinions that the UUENCODING was a real pain to deal with. So, as of October 01,1995, you'll be able to download STReport directly from our very own SERVER & WEB Site. While there, be sure to join our STR list. STReport's managing editors DEDICATED TO SERVING YOU! Ralph F. Mariano, Publisher - Editor Dana P. Jacobson, Editor, Current Affairs Section Editors PC Section Mac Section Atari Section R.F. Mariano J. Deegan D. P. Jacobson Portable Computers & Entertainment Kid's Computing Corner Marty Mankins Frank Sereno STReport Staff Editors Michael Arthur John Deegan Brad Martin John Szczepanik Paul Guillot Joseph Mirando Doyle Helms John Duckworth Jeff Coe Steve Keipe Guillaume Brasseur Melanie Bell Jay Levy Jeff Kovach Marty Mankins Carl Prehn Paul Charchian Vincent P. O'Hara Contributing Correspondents Dominick J. Fontana Norman Boucher Clemens Chin David H. Mann Angelo Marasco Donna Lines Ed Westhusing Glenwood Drake Vernon W.Smith Bruno Puglia Paul Haris Kevin Miller Craig Harris Allen Chang Tim Holt Patrick Hudlow Leonard Worzala Tom Sherwin Please submit ALL letters, rebuttals, articles, reviews, etc... via E-Mail to: CompuServe 70007,4454 Prodigy CZGJ44A Delphi RMARIANO GEnie ST.REPORT BIX RMARIANO FIDONET 1:112/35 ITC NET 85:881/253 AOL STReport Internet firstname.lastname@example.org Internet CZGJ44A@prodigy.com Internet RMARIANO@delphi.com Internet 70007.4454.compuserve.com Internet STReport@AOL.Com WORLD WIDE WEB http://www.streport.com SYSOP NEWS & CYBERWORLD REPORT "The Leading Hard Copy News Source in the BBS & Online Telecommunications World" Your own personal copy mailed to your home every month; STReport's special offer! Annual Subscription Rate of $15.00!! (normally 20.00). Please, Include the STR offer number (STR-21) for your discount. Send your subscription to: BBS Press Services, Inc. 8125 S.W. 21st Street Topeka, KS 66615 Or, to order by phone, Please Call: 1-913-478-3157 (Voice) 1-913-478-9239 (Data) 1-913-478-1189 (FAX) Checks, Mastercard, AMEX, Discover & Visa ok, Please include Full Name, Address, home Number, Card type, number & expiration date when ordering. If by mail, please sign your personal order. A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N FARGO PRIMERA PRO COLOR PRINTERS - 600DPI For a limited time only; If you wish to have a FREE sample printout sent to you that demonstrates FARGO Primera & Primera Pro SUPERIOR QUALITY 600dpi 24 bit Photo Realistic Color Output, please send a Self Addressed Stamped Envelope [SASE] (business sized envelope please) to: STReport's Fargo Printout Offer P.O. Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32205-6155 Folks, the FARGO Primera Pro has GOT to be the best yet. Its far superior to the newest of Color Laser Printers selling for more than three times as much. Its said that ONE Picture is worth a thousand words. Send for this sample now. Guaranteed you will be amazed at the superb quality. (please, allow at least a one week turn-around) A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N STReport Headline News LATE BREAKING INDUSTRY-WIDE NEWS Weekly Happenings in the Computer World Compiled by: Dana P. Jacobson House to Hear Net Ban Compromise Legislation designed to ease those controversial restrictions on what can be sent over computer networks has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Rep. Anna Eshoo, D-California. The Dow Jones News Service characterizes the move as a response to provisions in a sweeping new telecommunications law, which prohibits making material deemed "indecent" available to minors. As reported, online services and civil libertarians have filed federal suits that will challenge the provision in court. Meantime, the government has agreed not to investigate suspected violations. Dow Jones says Eshoo's legislation seeks to replace the indecency language with a "harmful to minors" standard, adding, "Critics of the indecency standard say it is overly broad, and could be used to ban such works as 'Catcher in the Rye' and frank discussions about birth control and sexuality." As noted, the harmful-to-minors standard was introduced during negotiations between House and Senate members who were trying to draft a compromise telecommunications bill. The language was narrowly defeated. Eshoo's bill also could strengthen the control parents have over what their children see online by promoting the use of labeling systems to restrict access to online materials. In a statement late yesterday, Eshoo said, "I'd rather have mom and dad monitoring their children's online viewing habits than the government. Technology offers the best opportunity for parents to manage what their kids have access to." The news service says the act "would protect online users and providers from liability if they use labeling or segregating systems, or other effective methods that restrict access to online materials." Telecom Bill Trial Begins A major lawsuit that could set new standards for free speech on computer networks goes to trial today in a federal courtroom in Philadelphia. A panel of three federal judges will hear witnesses on the suit that contests the 6-week-old Communications Decency Act, a controversial act that would punish by fines and as much as two years in prison the distribution to minors of obscene or indecent material on the Internet and commercial online services. As reported, the suit was filed Feb. 8 -- the same day President Clinton signed the act into law -- by the American Civil Liberties Union and other groups who say the law would limit discussion on computer networks of a wide range of information, such as AIDS prevention. Later, major computer and online firms, including CompuServe, filed a separate suit that was combined with the ACLU action. Opponents contend the new law is unconstitutional and unenforceable and would drastically restrict speech in cyberspace, which "is in fact a whole new forum of speech that is at least as broad and democratic as anything we've seen before, and so deserves at least the same broad protections as print," Sydney Rubin of the Citizens Internet Empowerment Coalition told reporter Randall Mikkelsen of the Reuter News Service. But, as Mikkelsen notes, the federal government argues the provisions are essential to shielding minors, and computer networks should be more strictly regulated, like television, because young people can easily obtain indecent material from them. In a brief defending the law, the Justice Department wrote, "A large and growing amount of pornography is presently available online and easily accessible to children in the home, far exceeding anything available prior to the advent of online computer services," adding, "Given this fact, Congress' bedrock concern for the protection of children takes on paramount importance." Last Feb. 15, U.S. District Court Judge Ronald Buckwalter temporarily blocked the prohibitions against indecent materials, and let the obscenity provisions stand. Later, the Justice Department agreed not to enforce the indecency provisions until the court ruled on the case. The trial that begins today is to determine whether a preliminary action should be imposed against the act. Provisions in the law banning obscene speech are not being challenged, Reuters adds. ACLU attorney Christopher Hansen says arguments will focus on the nature and value of the prohibited speech and on the feasibility of the restrictions. In a brief filed in the case, the Commercial Internet eXchange Association, a trade group of Internet firms, said the act places an impossible burden on providers of access to the Internet, where some 100,000 messages are posted daily to the roughly 15,000 discussion groups accessible to Internet users. And the Newspaper Association of America adds in its brief that the act hampers the ability of the newspaper industry to develop and offer online content, due to the need to screen content that could legally appear in newspapers but not online. In addition, opponents contend effective software controls exists as an alternative to the law, programs that enable parents to restrict a minor's access to material, without imposing general limitations on all of cyberspace. Reuters says the panel -- including Judge Buckwalter, U.S. District Judge Stewart Dalzell and Dolores Sloviter, chief judge of the 3rd District U.S. Court of Appeals -- will hear plaintiffs' witnesses today, tomorrow and April 1, subject to cross-examination on testimony submitted in writing to the court. Government witnesses are to testify April 11, 12 and 26. "A decision by the panel is expected sometime after the final hearing date," Mikkelsen reports. "Any appeal of the ruling would be made directly to the U.S. Supreme Court, under expedited provisions written into the act." Court OKS Boss's E-Mail Snooping A federal court in Pennsylvania has reaffirmed that employers can read electronic mail sent over their computer systems, even if their workers don't know about it. Writing in The Wall Street Journal this morning, reporter Raju Narisetti says the court ruled Pillsbury Co. could legally fire a manager who used e-mail to lambaste some bosses as "backstabbing bastards." Says Narisetti, "Company executives, who saw the message on a printout, decided to read all the employee's e-mail and then fired him." The district court ruled Pillsbury had the right to read the e-mail, adding, "The company's interest in preventing inappropriate and unprofessional comments" outweighed any privacy rights the employee had. The Journal observes the decision is in line with two earlier California cases that allowed company searches of e-mail. Meanwhile, the paper notes some 36 percent of 500 executives recently surveyed by the Society for Human Resources Management, in Alexandria, Virginia, said they look at employee e- mail. MCI Challenges AT&T on Internet Challenging AT&T in a cyberspheric turf war, MCI Communications Corp. said today it will triple the capacity of its Internet network and take other steps to expand the service. For instance, the Reuter News Service quotes MCI officials as saying the telecommunications giant will offer its long- distance customers five free hours of Net access a month, or unlimited access for $19.95 per month. The program is similar to AT&T's WorldNet service announced earlier this year. MCI said to qualify for a year of the five free monthly hours of Internet access, customers must sign up by May 31. They will pay $2.50 an hour for each hour of service beyond the five hours. An MCI spokesman told Eric Auchard of Reuters that after the five-free-hours offer expires May 31, customers could pay $9.95 a month for a five-hour service plan. (AT&T's Net deal includes five free hours a month for a full year for any long-distance customer who applies for its service in 1996.) MCI Vice President Vint Cerf, one of the Internet's founders, said that with the initiative called MCI Internet 2000, his employer plans to keep pricing for its Internet access services competitive, adding, "MCI's pioneering efforts in the Internet market have resulted in a $100 million business that we expect to grow to a $2 billion business by the year 2000." Adds Cerf, "The explosive growth of the Internet has led to rush hour traffic conditions for many users. MCI's network expansion is the equivalent of opening a new high-speed interstate highway for internetMCI users." MCI also said it will: z Expand its local dial-up Internet service to 250 U.S. cities by summer, and to 300 U.S. cities by year-end. z Offer customers a higher-speed ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) access service by May. z Broaden marketing of Internet services it provides businesses like web page hosting, secure commerce, content creation and intranet managed services. z Form an advanced applications unit to focus on developing emerging Internet applications for its customers. The unit will report to Fred Briggs, MCI's chief engineering officer, and Cerf, senior vice president-data architecture, Reuters says. Novell Licenses Sun's Java Novell Inc says it has reached an agreement with Sun Microsystems Inc. to license the Java development platform for use with its NetWare network operating system. The agreement will allow Novell to offer its developers and customers access to the complete Java platform, including the core power of Java -- the Java Virtual Machine. Novell says it will use Sun technology to create an execution environment on NetWare servers for Java applications. Novell adds that NetWare users will be able to access and distribute Java applications across business intranets and the Internet, regardless of the client platform. For its part, Sun has expanded its licensing arrangement for Java. It will give Novell the right to provide full Java functionality to third-party software application developers. Novell will embed the Java Virtual Machine into Novell's NetWare operating system, enabling third-party software developers to create Java applications within NetWare. "We see Java as the catalyst in the paradigm shift from the old desktop-centric computing model to the vision of network computing," says Alan Baratz, president of Sun's JavaSoft unit. "To carry that shift through, Java must be freely available - - it must become ubiquitous. This agreement will make the power of Java accessible to a broad new group of users directly through Novell, long considered a visionary leader in networking. "Java and NetWare make a powerful blend," notes Drew Major, Novell's chief scientist. "NetWare and Java will provide developers with a complete foundation of network services on which to build distributed applications. Our ability to distribute the complete Java platform as an integrated part of the Novell Operations system will position us as the leader in offering exciting new options and opportunities to our developer community. Java will provide the next-generation application execution environment for NetWare, and NetWare will provide the next major application platform for Java." U.S. Robotics Offers Speakerphone Modem market leader U.S. Robotics has unveiled ConferenceLink CS1500, its first PC-adaptable tabletop conference speakerphone. Users can connect the $499.95 ConferenceLink to their computer to use as a speakerphone peripheral in videoconferencing and Internet telephony applications, the Reuter News Service reports from Robotics' Skokie, Illinois, headquarters. Reuters notes the new phone is second in the series of U.S. Robotics' ConferenceLink telephony products, and the company said it plans to continue to expand the line to provide small offices and home-based professionals with information access products. The unit -- which features three built-in microphones, integrated keypad, mute and redial keys, status lights and any-key answer -- is to ship later this year. Zip Drive Hits 1 Million Milestone Iomega Corp. reports that it has shipped more than one million Zip drives and 10 million 100MB Zip disks in the product line's first year of availability. Iomega's also says it has reached an agreement with Escom to become the first European manufacturer to offer computers with built-in Zip drives. Escom expects to begin shipping systems containing the internal Zip drive in the second quarter of 1996. In the U.S., Iomega recently completed separate deals with Hewlett-Packard and Micron Electronics for installing Zip drives in selected PC models. "The Iomega Zip drive started as an industry phenomenon and is now a potential replacement for the floppy," says Stan Corker, director of removable storage research for International Data Corp. "With new games, graphics and online services demanding so much storage space, the current floppy is a sub-standard solution for saving, backing up and sharing computer information. Zip is changing that almost overnight." Available for both PC and Macintosh computers, the Zip drive began shipping last March. The unit sells for $199; the disks cost about $15 each. Digital Stock Falls on Report Stock in Digital Equipment Corp. tumbled 17 percent yesterday after the computer maker warned it won't meet analysts' expectations for profits because of flat PC sales. In reaction, shares in other PC makers also fell. Business writer Evan Ramstad of The Associated Press notes Digital was hoping for PC revenue growth of 30 percent in the quarter that ends March 31, "and analysts thought Digital would meet the sales predictions because it rejuvenated the PC operation last fall." But, he adds, "the trouble is demand has slowed for PCs among North American businesses and wholesalers and distributors have become clogged with inventory. So, PC makers have been forced to cut prices and profits." Digital stock fell throughout the day yesterday, closing down $11.25 to $56 on the New York Stock Exchange. Meanwhile, Compaq Computer Corp. stock finished down $2, IBM closed down $4.75, Hewlett-Packard Co. was down $3.62, Dell Computer Corp. was down $1.12, Microsoft Corp. fell $2.25 and Intel Corp. was down $3.25. Ramstad says these declines surprised some analysts. Said John Jones of Salomon Brothers, "What I think is happening is there's a lot of momentum players in the stock and they're choosing to immediately go someplace else and those actions put more pressure on through the day." He cut his profit forecast for Digital last week in part because of the slower PC growth Compaq and others had signaled. Gateway Unveils 'Big Screen PC' Gateway 2000 has introduced what it describes as the first "big screen PC." The direct market PC maker says its Destination system "combines the impact of high-quality, big-screen television with the intelligence of a computer." The company adds that the product combines the best elements of a state-of- the-art multimedia computer with the visual drama of home theater systems. Gateway notes that it holds and is applying for more than 20 patents on the 31-inch- screen system. "Destination brings the interactive power of computers to the world of consumer electronics, giving consumers more options for home entertainment, education and communications," says Gateway Chairman and CEO Ted Waitt. "Because it is based on state-of-the art computer technology, Destination offers consumers more flexibility and sharper images than traditional single- function consumer electronic devices, and can be upgraded as technology changes," says Waitt. "The system allows users to easily watch television, surf the Internet, shop at home and play games. The Destination big screen PC also gives businesses a dramatic new way to make presentations and schools a cost-effective tool to provide interactive instruction." Gateway says the system is compatible with consumer electronics components, including VCRs, stereo systems and laser disc players. Destination can take video feeds from cable television systems, antennas or other video devices. Audio signals from the Destination system can be channeled through home stereo systems to offer surround sound capability. Prices for the Destination models will range from $3,499 to $4,699, depending on configuration. Customers can place orders for the system beginning April 8. Survey Sees Slower Home PC Sales New research suggests PC sales growth to consumers will slow down this year and next, and actually decline in 1998. It also predicts PCs won't be used in most U.S. homes by the end of this decade and even questions whether such a goal will ever be reached. Some PC makers expressed shock at the report from renowned market watchers at Dataquest Inc., though business writer Evan Ramstad of The Associated Press notes the same industry officials "have long said it would be difficult to sustain sales growth that's been as high as 40 percent in the past few years." The Dataquest report, based on a survey of 10,000 U.S. households, says: z Growth of PC sales in the U.S. consumer market, which reached 42 percent in 1994 and 22 percent last year, will ease to 7.6 percent this year and less than 1 percent in 1997. z In 1998, the group forecast a sales decline of 2.3 percent among U.S. consumers. z Overall PC industry will grow more strongly because of expanding markets overseas, but sales growth to U.S. businesses, schools and government agencies already has slowed. "That market is now shaped by broader economic conditions instead of the prospect that PCs can offer some new value to a work process," says AP. Ramstad reports Dataquest found 29 percent of the surveyed homes had at least one PC at the end of 1995. It projected that number will jump to 32.6 percent by the end of this year but reach just 38 percent by the end of the decade, "far short of many executives' expectations," he commented. Dataquest analyst Scott Miller told AP, "We are running out of households that can afford to buy new PCs." AP says a key reason is "the industry's inability to reach lower-income households with less pricey machines." Dataquest also found PCs are in: z 65 percent of homes with more than $60,000 in annual income, probably a saturation point. z But only 12 percent of households with less than $30,000 in annual income. "That is up just slightly from 10 percent in a similar survey Dataquest performed 10 years ago," Ramstad writes. Meanwhile, United Press International quotes the new Dataquest report as estimating the number of computers in use will hit 47.4 million by the end of the year, 55.3 million at the end of 1997, 62.3 million in 1998 and 69.2 million in 1999. Analyst Miller told UPI the relatively slow gain in the percentage of households means that many of the new PCs are going into households that already have a computer operating, adding, "With the maturing of the U.S. home market through the end of the decade, vendors must choose their battles carefully, and they must execute on existing opportunities with more targeted segmentation work." Added Miller, "The lucrative markets going forward are repeat customers and new high-income buyers, in that order." UPI says new unit shipments will hit 7.94 million this year in the United States and edge up to 8 million next year, then fall to 7.81 million in 1998 before jumping to 8.41 million in 1999. AP notes competing research firm Computer Intelligence InfoCorpornia, of La Jolla, Calif. reported last week that sales growth of PCs had been consistent at all income levels for the last two years. It said PCs were now in 35 percent of U.S. households. And earlier this month, Odyssey of San Francisco also said PCs were in 35 percent of the nation's homes, "but it reported a similar gap to PC usage between high-income and lower-income households," notes Ramstad. Portable Sales to Jump This Year New research says the market for portable computers will grow twice as quickly this year as in 1995, when the industry was slow to change over to new Pentium-based machines. Reporting from San Jose, Calif. the Reuter News Service quotes a report by Dataquest Inc. as saying that due to the tougher transition to laptop and notebook computers using Intel Corp.'s faster Pentium chip, the worldwide portable market grew 15 percent in 1995, more slowly than had been expected early in the year. However, Dataquest researchers say to watch for the portable PC market to grow 30 percent in 1996 as the changeover to the new Pentium-based systems has been largely completed. In fact, says Reuters, "laptop, notebook and even smaller 'subnotebook' machines are quickly becoming more popular with executives and other professionals who travel frequently for business." The report also said: z Toshiba Corp. of Japan held the spot as the largest portable computer vendor, Compaq Computer Corp. stayed at No. 2, while Japan's NEC Corp. slipped past IBM into third place. Apple Computer held onto fifth place, followed by Fujitsu Ltd., Dell Computer Corp., AST Research Inc., Texas Instruments Inc., and Zenith Data Systems. z A total of 9.9 million portable computers were shipped worldwide last year, up from 8.6 million in 1994. Analyst Mike McGuire told the wire service, "As the market completes the progression to the Pentium architecture this year, we expect a major shift in product mix for the top vendors in the form of a major emphasis on 'value' notebooks." Reuters says "value" notebooks typically are priced from about $1,800 to $3,000 and have fewer features than so-called "premium" portable machines, which can cost $3,000 or more. Microprocessor Generation Surveyed If you're a member of the "Microprocessor Generation" - someone born after the 1971 invention of the microprocessor -- chances are you're quite attached to your personal computer. According to a recent survey of more than 3,200 visitors to the "America's Smithsonian" exhibition in Los Angeles, more than 60 percent of the people under 25 believe that the computer will be the most important device in their lives by the year 2000, far ahead of other technologies such as the automobile, television and telephone. The Intel Corp. sponsored survey also finds that if given $2,000 to spend on electronic products, 48 percent of the "Microprocessor Generation" would spend it on a personal computer system, in contrast to 29 percent on a big screen TV/home entertainment system or 16 percent on a stereo system. According to the study, 72 percent of people under 25 have a personal computer at home today, which they use almost equally for both fun/entertainment and work/school. Seventy percent of the respondents under 25 first used a computer before they were 10 years old. Of those under 11, 29 percent learned how to use a computer before reaching 5. Sixty-six percent of the respondents under 25 consider themselves either "intermediate," "expert" or "power users." Twice as many males as females claim to be expert computer users. Seventy percent of the women under 25 also began using computers before they were 10. Most of the "Microprocessor Generation" is wired, finds the survey. Fifty- nine percent believe that by the year 2000 they will receive most of their news via the Internet, as opposed to radio/TV (31 percent) and print (10 percent); 55 percent are already Internet users. People under 25 describe computers as "cool" (58 percent), "useful" (57 percent), entertaining (52 percent) and "fascinating" (44 percent). "For the 'Microprocessor Generation,' computer literacy is a basic skill along with reading, writing and arithmetic," says Dennis Carter, Intel's vice president of marketing. "Every generation has a love affair with technology that gives them a distinctive stamp and cultural perspective. For 'In-Betweeners' who grew up between the two World Wars in the 20s and 30s, it was the automobile, movies and radio. And for 'Baby Boomers' of the 40s, 50s and 60s, television, rocket ships and the electric guitar helped define a generation. Today, we have the 'Microprocessor Generation,' for whom the personal computer is a totally natural way to work, learn, play and communicate." Study: CD-ROM Medium of Choice Multimedia title publishers are making it clear that CD- ROM is their medium of choice, finds a new study compiled by Simba Information of Wilton, Connecticut. According to the market research firm, the average multimedia publisher generated 84 percent of its revenues from CD-ROMs in 1995, as opposed to cartridge, floppy disk or online formats. Individual publisher responses ranged from 10 percent of revenues from CD-ROM to 100 percent. Fifty-seven percent of publishers generate 100 percent of their revenues from CD-ROM titles. Only 13 percent generate less than half of their sales from CD-ROM titles. "If you're considering publishing a multimedia title in the next few years, CD-ROM is the medium to do it on," says Tom O'Reilly, editor of Multimedia Business Report, a Simba publication. "Floppy and cartridge are on their way out and Digital Video Disc (DVD) is still at least five years from becoming a mass market medium for computer publishing." Publishers are bullish on developing titles for Microsoft's Windows 95 operating system. About 97 percent of publishers told Simba they're developing Windows 95 titles in 1996, up from 85 percent in 1995. Windows (84 percent) and Macintosh (84 percent) are the other major platforms for 1996, according to the survey. "Windows 95 may not have lived up to the incredible hype surrounding its release last year, but publishers are obviously giving it their approval as the platform of choice going forward," O'Reilly says. Kids Thrillers Debut on Web Random House Inc. is joining with the Yahoo! World Wide Web search engine to publish an interactive Internet thriller series for young adults. Called The Lurker Files, the project is the first series from Random House to be published on the World Wide Web prior to book publication. The Lurker Files debuts today on both the Random House Web site (http://www.randomhouse.com) and on Yahooligans!, (http://www.yahooligans.com/entertainment), a new directory for kids from Yahoo! Written by author Scott Ciencin, The Lurker Files is a cyberspace thriller series set at the fictional Wintervale University. Each story in the series features unsuspecting college students who enter the Ratskeller, a campus chat room, and become entangled in the web of the Lurker, whose identity remains a mystery. New episodes will be published twice a week, on Tuesdays and Fridays. In addition to reading the episodes online, kids will be able to enter the Ratskeller and talk about what is happening in the story. Episodes for ensuing weeks will reflect conversations from the chat room. "Random House has made a number of successful alliances in the CD-ROM marketplace that have enabled us to expand our publishing efforts beyond print," says Randi Benton, President of Random House New Media. "This partnership with Yahoo! is extremely important as we focus on producing new properties for the Web." Hearst to Provide Content to WOW! CompuServe Inc. has signed a deal with Hearst New Media & Technology to bring contents from Hearst's HomeArts World Wide Web site (http://www.homearts.com) to WOW! from CompuServe, the new home-oriented online information service. Visitors to HomeArts will be able to access magazine articles from such Hearst titles as Redbook, Good Housekeeping, Country Living and Popular Mechanics, as well as original content designed especially for the HomeArts site. HomeArts will also provide WOW! members with a link to its innovative Recipe Finder, a service that matches customized recipes to whatever ingredients users may have in their homes. "HomeArts is already experiencing very high traffic on the World Wide Web -- over 1.7 million page views per month, and growing quickly," says Brian Sroub, vice president of marketing at Hearst New Media & Technology. "By partnering with WOW!, we now have the opportunity to bring HomeArts to millions of additional American families." HomeArts will be available on WOW! when the service launches on March 25th. WOW! subscribers receive unlimited access to WOW! and the Internet for $17.95 per month. To become a charter member of WOW!, call 1-800-9GETWOW. Boy Rescued From Net Kidnapping A Chicago boy has been rescued unharmed from a Florida man who is accused of abducting the 13-year-old after making contact with him through the Internet. Federal officials told the Reuter News Service the boy and his accused abductor were taken into custody as they stepped off a bus late Friday night in Louisville, Kentucky. James Burns, the U.S. attorney in Chicago, told the wire service the boy had been corresponding over the Internet with a man known to him as Richard Romero of St. Petersburg, Florida. At one point, the teen's mother discovered the correspondence and called the man, telling him she was concerned and that her son suffered from a learning disability. "Last Friday the boy failed to show up at school in Mount Prospect, a northwestern Chicago suburb, and his parents found that he had dismantled his computer and placed the components in his backpack," Reuters writes. "In searching around the house, the boy's mother found the number of a motel in Mount Prospect and police later found that a man calling himself Romero had been there." According to an indictment released late yesterday, the man, who was charged with kidnapping, carried a Venezuelan passport without a valid entry stamp at the time of his arrest. It is not clear if Romero is his real name. Reuters says he was identified in the indictment as "John Doe, known as Richard Romero." Thanks for the Thoughts, Bill... Next time you get e-mail from Bill Gates, ask yourself, is it real... or is it just Gates' macro key? Computergram International this morning carries the tale of David Applefield, editor of an electronic guide to Paris for Anglophones, and his electronic mail exchange with the famed Microsoft Corp. chief. Applefield sent an electronic letter inviting Gates to speak to a conference of editors of literary journals from 50 countries on the merits of cyberspace for wider dissemination of literature. In "about 90 seconds," says CI, Applefield got a reply, saying "Thank you very much, David, for your thoughts. This is something I've been giving a lot of consideration of late. Sincerely, Bill." Miffed, Applefield sent another e-mail, Take a Hike Turkey," to which the response was: "Thank you very much, David, for your thoughts. This is something I've been giving a ... " Win95 SCANNER DRIVERS STR Spotlight Nine Months and Counting.. True Corporate Philosophy or.. Superb SmokeScreen?? By R. F. Mariano (from Canon's Internet Web Site) The Kyosei Ideal "The cornerstone of Canon's operations is the ideal summed up in the word Kyosei living and working together for the common good. It is a philosophy that seeks understanding and harmony with individuals, society and the environment. And it looks toward a world of effective communication, well- being and affluence. For a company, this pursuit begins with respect for people, cultures, countries, regions and the environment." "These are the principles that have guided Canon international expansion in recent years. Equally important, they are a map for further contributions in the next century." NEXT CENTURY??? How about this month??? Where are the thirty two bit drivers for Windows 95 and Canon's IX-4015 and IX-4025 Color Scanners. Excuse after excuse and still .since last August.. NO drivers and expected delivery date. Is this really CANON??? What is going on? Has Canon CHOKED? "I do not have any official release date of the driver. I'm sure the developers are doing the best they can." . CCSI support person CCSI 1-714-438-3000 driver support Canon USA Inc. 1-516-488-6700, H. Murase Pres. Canon Worldwide - Fujio Mitarai Pres. YOU WANT IT WHEN???? Are these people (CCSI) for real??? Does Canon actually expect the folks who've purchased the IX-4015 and the IX-4025 Color Scanners and at the same time faithfully bought into the "Canon Support Philosophy believe this "Kyosei THING?" CANON should and MUST be held accountable for this gross incompetence! Windows 95 was announced as "the coming thing" almost two years before its actual release to the purchasing public. Where was Canon during all this time?? They claim they were on the Beta Team for Win95. Therefore its fairly obvious Win95 didn't come as any "surprise". Unfortunately, by all indications the entire support picture is somewhat cloudy and should perhaps be "re-organized". There are serious problems in more than just the Scanner Driver area. The CCSI response cited above is exactly what Canon does not need. It allows Canon's "loyal consumers" to know exactly what their sorry position is even at this very late date. Canon's people, (CCSI), must be made aware there are other means to gain the support necessary and deserved. Canon's customers must be afforded a means to continue with the productive use of their NEW Canon made scanner products. The corporate execs must react in favor of the consumers. Even if... it puts their "precious positions" on the line. Canon should be highly responsive to its customer needs. Especially since its mostly import product. As such, they come under close Government Regulation. Canon obviously, by their performance in this scanner driver debacle, has yet to realize the customer must come first. Product support is the "Golden Key" key to any level of successful customer relations. If there are problems in this division, could it be there are similar incidents of arrogance and complacency in other of Canon's divisions? Like its printer driver problems?? Nobody but nobody. is disputing the fact that Canon is a highly reputable company. What is being plainly stated is very clear and simple... why has it taken Canon so godawful LONG (seven months + and still counting) in attempting to get their act together when in the FACE of other reputable and highly competitive companies. Epson and Hewlett Packard, have their updated 32 bit TWAIN drivers released!! All Canon has come up with are lame excuses. Canon has, without a doubt, obviously fallen flat on its face in the support department. The users have been beating their heads against a WALL over the scanner drivers for the past SEVEN MONTHS asking, pleading, and finally begging for the better 32bit drivers. Canon's reaction? "We're trying".. The drivers Canon's customers are FORCED to use with what this reporter considers to be the very best Color Scanners made in the one thousand or less dollar category... IX-4015 and IX-4025, are sadly, two year old original 16 bit drivers (clunkers). Many Canon customers have had to resort to very fancy and elaborate footwork to keep their scanners in consistent and reliable use under Windows 95. Almost every other MAJOR hardware and software manufacturer has updates and/or patches available for Windows NT and/or Windows 95. Canon has nothing for NT and excuses for Win95. In this modern world, timing is everything. People are investing in a NEW operating system, one that has been "in the NEWS and the main topic of discussion" for well over two years. Canon, like every other major hardware supplier, enjoyed ample advance warning of its release and expected high market penetration levels. Most all in the marketplace heeded the signals and prepared in advance. Did Canon?? Obviously if so, its either been in STEALTH mode or on a different planet. Consumers hear little or nothing from Canon at this time. Yet Windows NT has been in release for how long??? Where in heaven's name is the support for NT?? The vast majority of suppliers have responded positively with driver updates etc., for BOTH NT and 95. Canon is unfortunately, still telling the world's Canon Color Scanner marketplace to wait. Are they THAT strapped for programmers?? Or, are they in desperate need of real programmers?? NT is 32bit as is Windows 95. Its a sorry state of affairs for Canon. What with the rumors of "Class Action Suits" and Severe Damages being sought from consumers at all points of the Globe, Canon's CCSI had better wake up and wake up FAST. All the excuses in the world will not make the scanners run any better or perform any better!! NEW, 32bit DRIVERS WILL. Where are they?? Better yet... WHEN will they be REAL? Its truly time for Canon's top Executives to come down hard in dealing with those responsible for the 32bit drivers for the Color Scanners IX-4015 and IX- 4025. The current litany of excuses since August 24 1995 has become the laughing stock of the computing industry. Much like ..a shame filled Comedy of Errors. UPDATE: Since this reporter began investigation this situation and after having placed a number of interrogatory calls to Canon's various numbers. A return call from a member of Canon's CCSI Support Group has been received. To make a long story short. Unfortunately, there is no "drop dead date" for the thirty two bit Twain drivers for use with Win95. The entire world is waiting in earnest for Canon to release this software. Further, it was brought to our attention by the person who called that, incredibly, Canon does not write these drivers at all. They "outsource" them. Well now, so much for having control over the support software that makes your hardware operate properly for your customer base. There you have it folks. While the person that called was continually expressing what sounded like a very sincere concern for the consumer, the bottom line is there was no definitive answer as to when these much needed 32 bit Twain drivers for the Canon IX-4015 and IX-4025 would become available. Instead of Kyosei, Canon's real slogan should be.. You want it when???? Ps; my suggestion is to call the numbers listed above repeatedly until these people in charge WAKE UP. Class Action efforts are interminably long and will appear foolish for its for certain the drivers will be in release before the action goes before a judge. Creative Introduces New Line of 8x Multimedia Upgrade Kits New Kits Extend Award-Winning Line With The Latest In CD-ROM And Audio Technology Singapore -- March 4, 1996 -- Creative Labs, Inc., a subsidiary of Creative Technology Ltd. (NASDAQ: CREAF), today extended its award-winning line of multimedia products with three new 8X-speed CD-ROM drive upgrade kits. The new kits include the latest in CD-ROM and audio technology, that combined provides the consumer with a more realistic and immersive multimedia experience. Targeted at the first-time buyer, and at multimedia PC users looking to upgrade their older technology, the new kits deliver premium performance at an affordable price. Creative's new family of multimedia upgrade kits includes the BlasterT CD 8X kit, for an estimated street price of $249.99; the Sound Blasterr Discovery CDT 8X kit, for an estimated street price of $379.99; and the Sound Blaster PerformanceT 8X kit, for an estimated street price of $449.99. The 8x multimedia upgrade kits will be available in March through Creative's extensive network of distributors and retailers. "Our 8x kits provide the hottest audio and CD-ROM technology which dramatically increases the user's multimedia experience, " said Sim Wong Hoo, CEO and president of Creative Technology, "Our patent pending technology is engineered to deliver the highest degree performance in 8x CD-ROM drives for our customers." Blaster CD 8x Creative's Blaster CD 8x includes Creative's own 8x IDE CD-ROM drive. Designed with a unique patent pending feature that permits the 8x drive to detect the optimum speed the CD-ROM requires for playback, and adjusts its spin rate to provide smooth playback of CD-ROM titles. It also includes CD- EXTRA support that reads CD's with digital audio and data. The Blaster CD 8x delivers a typical access rate of 230ms, a 1200 KB transfer rate, and features 256KB memory buffer. Also included in the package are Papyrus' NASCARr Racing; CyclomaniaT from Accolade; The 1996 Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia; Quick CD player utility; and a plug-and-play interface card. Sound Blaster Performance 8x Sound Blaster Performance 8x kit is Creative's top-of-the line offering. It includes the Creative 8x CD-ROM drive; a Sound Blaster 32 PnP wave table sound card based on the EMU8000, Creative's 3D stereo enhancement for a deeper richer sound experience, and the ability to upgrade with additional memory to take advantage of SoundFontsr and E-mu's 3D Positional Audio. The kit also includes a set of high-performance, amplified, 2-way, 20 watts per channel stereo speakers valued at $100 that complete the high-quality audio experience; and the latest in CD-ROM multimedia titles including: LucasArts' The Dig, Star Warsr Rebel Assault IIT Special Edition; Accolade's Unnecessary Roughness '95; 21st Century Entertainment's Pinball Dreams Deluxe; Interplay's Cyberia Mission Norway, Virtual PoolT Straight/8, Dorling Kindersley's Eyewitness Encyclopedia of Science, David Macaulay - The Way Things Work; Mindscape's The 1996 Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia, Voyetra's Midi Orchestrator Plus for Windows; Creative Soundo'LE; Creative WaveStudio, Creative TextAssist, Creative Mixer, and Creative Multimedia Deck. Sound Blaster Discovery CD 8x The Discovery CD 8x kit includes the Creative 8x CD-ROM drive; a Sound Blaster 32 PnP audio card that provides great wave table sound based on the EMU8000; amplified stereo speakers; and 12 titles: Lucas Arts' Full Throttle and Star Wars Dark Forces Special Edition; Accolade's Unnecessary Roughness '95; 21st Century Entertainment's Pinball Dreams Deluxe; Interplay's CyberiaT Mission Norway; Humongous Entertainment's Freddi FishT and the Case of the Missing Kelp SeedsT, Putt-Putt Joins the ParadeT, Putt-Putt and Fatty BearT's Activity Pack, Let's Explore the FarmT; Dorling Kindersley's David Macaulay - The Way Things Work; Mindscape's The 1996 Grolier Multimedia EncyclopediaT; Voyetra's MIDI OrchestratorT Plus for Windowsr; Creative Soundo'LET, Creative WaveStudior, Creative TextAssistT, Creative Mixer, and CreativeMultimedia DeckT. Creative First to Deliver Direct3D Support Creative's 3D Blaster Supports Microsoft's New Direct3D API Now Has Broadest Software Support In The Industry SINGAPORE - March 4, 1996 - Creative Technology, Ltd. (NASDAQ: CREAF), the leading provider of multimedia products for personal computers, announced today that its 3D Blaster, the first consumer level 3D accelerator, fully supports Microsoft's newly announced Direct3D API. Long recognized for establishing the standards for PC sound, Creative has been working closely with Microsoft and other industry leaders to define the standards for 3D graphics. Microsoft's newly released beta of the DirectX SDK includes Direct3D drivers for Creative's 3D Blaster product line. "The announcement of Direct3D by Microsoft represents a significant step in validating the great potential of the 3D market," stated Hock Leow, vice president of the Video and Graphics Product Group at Creative Labs, the U.S. subsidiary of Creative Technology. "As we did with our Sound Blaster sound cards, we're excited to be working with Microsoft to ensure our customers have the broadest software support in the industry." Creative plans to have all 3D Blaster products support multiple 3D graphics APIs, including Creative's own Creative Graphics Library (CGL) and Microsoft's Direct3D API. By working with both standards, the 3D Blaster supports more titles and libraries than any other PC-based 3D accelerator, providing the end user with the broadest access to new 3D titles. In addition to running under Windows 95, CGL is distinguished from Direct3D in that it is also available for DOS. This makes CGL useful immediately, and also makes it an ideal development platform for developers with legacy DOS- based applications. Creative currently has over 200 registered developers in its 3D Developer program, with more than 50 titles announced with support for CGL. In addition, Creative has licensed CGL to 3D Labs for use on the Permedia line of 3D accelerators. "We believe Creative Labs has the technology know-how and marketing muscle necessary to make true high-performance 3D games a reality for home PC users," said Mike Duffy, chief technical officer at Mindscape, Inc. The 3D Blaster is currently available for VL-Bus systems and has an estimated street price of $349.99. A PCI version is planned for shipment in early Summer. CONTACT INFORMATION Theresa Pulido Karen Gordon Creative Labs, Inc. Copithorne & Bellows Sound Blaster and Discovery CD are registered trademarks and Blaster, Performance, Creative Multimedia Deck, and TextAssist are trademarks of Creative Technology Ltd. E-mu is a registered trademark of E-mu Systems, Inc. and ShareVision is a registered trademark of ShareVision Technology, Inc. All other products mentioned herein are trademarks of their respective owners and are hereby recognized as such. Creative Technology Ltd. develops, manufactures and markets a family of sound and video multimedia products for IBM- compatible PCs. The company's Sound Blaster sound platform enables IBM-compatible PCs to produce high-quality audio for entertainment, educational, music and productivity applications, and has been accepted as the industry standard sound platform for PC-based software. Creative Technology Ltd. was incorporated in 1983 and is based in Singapore. Creative Technology's subsidiaries include Creative Labs, Inc., E-mu Systems, Inc., and ShareVision Technology, Inc. Creative also has other subsidiaries in the U.S, Europe, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, Malaysia and China. The Company's stock is traded on the Nasdaq under the symbol CREAF and on the Stock Exchange of Singapore. EDUPAGE STR Focus Keeping the users informed Edupage Contents FTC Targets Internet Fraud Iomega Stock Volatility Blamed On AOL Postings AT&T Free Internet Access Offer Is Big Hit Compaq Looks For Pennies From Heaven FSU Tests Internet Smart Cards Videoconferencing In The Outback Software Lets Blind "Read" Newspapers Internet Radio TV Rating System Deadline Set AT&T Cutback Narrowed Microsoft Is Tied To The Net Net Hate E.U. Sees Universal Phone Service As A Civil Right MCI Battles AT&T In Headline War Over Free Internet Access Computer Industry Seeks Free Trade Home PC Growth To Stall Next Year AOL And HP Want To Manage Your Net Microsoft Targets Online Banking Novell's Internet Strategy Sleeping With The Enemy Is A Way Of Life On The Net Hubbard Supports One-Channel Digital TV Transition Job Seekers Dispute Shortage Of Software Workers French Book Banned, Then Pirated Canadian TV Rating System Studied Virtual University Gingrich Urges Top-To-Bottom Change Of Education Nynex Antes Up In Internet Access Game Technical Fix May Resolve Online Copyright Issues Disney Town To Offer Online Healthcare AOL Site No. 1 In Web Survey Stock Traders' "Rap Sheets" On The Net AT&T Takes Notes On The Net FCC Warns Canada Laptop Sales On The Rise Generation X Should Be "Generation PC" Spies Who Came In From The Cold Wit-Trade Suspends Stock-Trading On Web Clendenin Rates BellSouth's Programs To Aid Education Information "Highway Of Babel" FTC TARGETS INTERNET FRAUD The Federal Trade Commission is conducting a "wholesale crackdown" on perpetrators of allegedly deceptive marketing schemes that are advertised in Internet news groups or on the World Wide Web. Charges were filed against nine individuals or companies accused of misleading the public, and agency officials say this is only the beginning: "The Internet opens a world of opportunities for consumers. Unfortunately, it also presents opportunities for scam artists. We intend to monitor the Internet rigorously and act decisively when we see deceptive and misleading marketing," says the director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection. (Investor's Business Daily 15 Mar 96 A4) IOMEGA STOCK VOLATILITY BLAMED ON AOL POSTINGS Iomega, maker of high-capacity removable disk drives, is the focus of controversy on America Online's Motley Fool bulletin board. Company officials have complained to the SEC that postings on Motley Fool and other BBSs have contained false information and may be contributing to the volatility of its stock. Online exposure has "raised the visibility of some stocks as well as the interest in those stocks," says an outside spokesman for Iomega. "At the same time, we're very concerned about how online services can be used to attempt to drive stock prices higher or lower through misinformation." Postings about Iomega escalated to flaming and physical threats last month, causing Motley Fool to pull some of the more offensive ones, but critics of online BBSs note Iomega's problems are a result of the practice of using "screen names" and the lack of verification of information that's posted. "You don't know if the person is a Ph.D. or in Sing Sing," says one critic. (Wall Street Journal 15 Mar 96 A5C) AT&T FREE INTERNET ACCESS OFFER IS BIG HIT AT&T has been swamped with more than 200,000 requests for start-up software that will allow its customers up to five hours of free Internet access. AT&T said the number of requests so far for WorldNet Internet access is four times what it had expected. (New York Times 15 Mar 96 A1) COMPAQ LOOKS FOR PENNIES FROM HEAVEN Compaq is planning to work with others to eventually offer homeowners videoconferencing and Internet access, as well as networking for any machine in the home that has a computer chip. One company executive says that "consumers are looking for products that are ready to go, with services, applications, and hardware ready to use every day. Say we'll have an appliance that connects to a network for 6 cents a day. Compaq gets a piece of that 6 cents." And Compaq's chief strategist says: "We have to do something for the consumer until the phone companies can deliver bandwidth access. We're going to do that using satellites." (Fortune 1 Apr 96) FSU TESTS INTERNET SMART CARDS Florida State University plans to issue new I.D. cards that will enable FSU students to access the Internet, check grades, request transcripts or use online course materials. The "smart cards" will debut next fall, and business conducted with the cards will be encrypted to ensure secure transactions. (Chronicle of Higher Education 15 Mar 96 A23) VIDEOCONFERENCING IN THE OUTBACK Since 1993, aborigine communities in Australia's Northern Territory have been using videoconferencing as the primary medium for personal and business communications among each other and other sites in Sidney, Darwin and Alice Springs. The Tanami Network, which uses PictureTel videoconferencing equipment, is favored over the telephone or radio because it can convey the extensive system of hand gestures used by aborigines while speaking. Most of the videoconferences held are personal or ceremonial in nature - paid for in large part by mineral royalties and community funds. Other aborigine videoconferencing networks include the Mungindi Project, which uses Cornell University's CU- SeeMe software to link four remote schools. (Technology Review Apr 96 p17) SOFTWARE LETS BLIND "READ" NEWSPAPERS The National Federation for the Blind is sponsoring a computerized system that translates newspaper stories and then "reads" them over the phone to visually impaired people. Stories are available from The New York Times, USA Today and the Chicago Tribune; the program is running in Baltimore, Baton Rouge and Minneapolis, and is slated for 100 more cities by next year. (Tampa Tribune 16 Mar 96 A8) INTERNET RADIO Bell Canada announced a partnership with 3WB Corp. to create new commercial services for the Internet that include radio networks that allow businesses a multimedia presence on the Net. Customers will receive the Internet radio using software provided free by 3WB. < http://www.cfra.com/ > (Toronto Financial Post 15 Mar 96 p6) TV RATING SYSTEM DEADLINE SET Canada's federal regulator has given broadcasters until September 1 to develop a rating system to allow parents to screen programs using V-chip technology. Since it is unlikely Canada and the United States will ever agree on a rating system, Canada's will be imposed on American cross-border signals. (Toronto Globe & Mail 15 Mar 96 A1) AT&T CUTBACK NARROWED The number of AT&T workers involuntarily separated from the company may turn out to be much lower than the 40,000 layoffs announced three months ago, as part of AT&T's reorganization plan to divide into three separate companies. Because more employees accepted the company's buyout offer than was anticipated, and because some of the workers marked for termination were able to find jobs in other parts of the organization, the company's "latest best estimate of people who will have to be involuntarily let go is about 18,000." (New York Times 16 Mar 96 p17) MICROSOFT IS TIED TO THE NET Dataquest analyst Chris LeTocq says Microsoft's Internet strategy will include making its major application programs, Word and Excel, tie into the Net (and into internal corporate intranets), and letting its customers use all popular Internet technologies, even those from competitors, such as Sun Microsystem's Java language. ''They don't want to give people any reason to move away from Windows,'' says Montgomery Securities analyst David Readerman. (San Jose Mercury News 16 Mar 96) NET HATE B'Nai Brith says anti-Semitic harassment in Canada is on the rise because of an "exponential growth of cyberhate." The Canadian Solicitor-General says the problem is difficult to cope with because it crosses several public and government jurisdictions. (Toronto Globe & Mail 15 Mar 96 A6) E.U. SEES UNIVERSAL PHONE SERVICE AS A CIVIL RIGHT The European Commission is proposing that all citizens to have the right of access at affordable prices to phone, fax, and computer lines, with "affordability" decided by the member states themselves. The idea will be supported by the French government, which is under pressure from public sector unions to protect public services, and opposed by Germany and the United Kingdom. The Commission intends to allow the concept of universal service to evolve with technological changes, but says that it is at this moment premature to define the full scope of universal service, because enlargement of the concept to include such things as Internet service might cause many people to pay for service they neither need nor use. (Financial Times 15 Mar 96 p2) MCI BATTLES AT&T IN HEADLINE WAR OVER FREE INTERNET ACCESS Accusing AT&T of "building its Internet service out of newspaper headlines," MCI senior vice president Vint Cerf asserts that "MCI's service is built on a foundation of fiber" and that his company will triple the capacity of its network, expand consumer services, give MCI customers five free hours of use each month through the end of May (in contrast to AT&T's free offer that lasts through the end of the year), and match AT&T's offer of unlimited Internet access for $19.95 a month to its own long-distance customers. MCI also indicates that Microsoft's Explorer software will be the Browser of choice on its service, and that it plans to offer editorial content from Microsoft Network. (New York Times 19 Mar 96 C1) COMPUTER INDUSTRY SEEKS FREE TRADE The computer industry is pushing for a broad, multilateral agreement on free trade of computers and components, with the eventual goal of achieving zero tariffs. Japan already has zero tariffs and Europe's are fairly low at 4%, but the big challenge is in countries such as Korea, Taiwan and the South American countries that make up the Mercosur customs union, which maintain high tariffs to keep U.S. products out. Other industries are taking notes, hoping that the computer companies will lead the way for sectors such as automobiles and steel. (Wall Street Journal 18 Mar 96 A1) HOME PC GROWTH TO STALL NEXT YEAR Growth in the home PC market is expected to slow significantly this year, to 8%, and by 1998 could actually be declining, according to market research firm Dataquest Inc. Growth for 1997 is predicted to be flat, at about 0.7%. The U.S. home market grew 22% last year, and 42% in 1994. The decline is blamed on market saturation among households earning more than $100,000, the group most likely to buy a PC. (Investor's Business Daily 19 Mar 96 A9) AOL AND HP WANT TO MANAGE YOUR NET America Online, its subsidiary ANS, and Hewlett-Packard have established a partnership to jointly market Managed Intranet Solutions to corporate customers. The service will provide an end-to-end network based on HP Unix servers and workstations, ANS's TCP/IP network infrastructure and AOL's end- user support. "AOL is constantly trying to expand its revenue pie, and business-to-business is the next logical step -- especially when companies have millions to spend on technology and there still isn't an established revenue model in the consumer online market," says a senior analyst at Jupiter Communications. Some critics say this definitely isn't a match made in heaven: "If AOL's billing department is any indication, I pity anyone who needs to make use of the help desk." (Information Week 11 Mar 96 p20) MICROSOFT TARGETS ONLINE BANKING Microsoft is now targeting Intuit's lead in home banking, announcing new initiatives to provide banks and service companies a secure way to process online transactions. Up until now, banks that use Intuit's Quicken or Microsoft's Money programs use Intuit Services Corp. to process the transactions. Microsoft's new plan, called Open Financial Connectivity, would allow banks to deal directly with Money users, without involving ISC or Visa. Intuit chairman Scott Cook discounts Microsoft's latest move, saying he thinks banks would rather deal with one organization that provides the software and the processing capability: "When you don't have a complete solution you try to turn that negative into a positive. Value in this business comes not from the technology, but can customers actually use it." (Wall Street Journal 18 Mar 96 B5) NOVELL'S INTERNET STRATEGY Novell Inc. has agreed to license Sun Microsystems' Java software for use with its NetWare operating system. The company also recently licensed software for conducting electronic business transactions from Open Market Inc. "The question now is: Is it too late for Novell to catch up," says an analyst with Bear Stearns & Co. Other industry observers contend that Novell has a head start in some areas, such as its network directory for managing corporate data. "I think they have got a good 12 months and maybe longer" to implement their Internet strategy, says a Smith Barney analyst. (Wall Street Journal 19 Mar 96 B3) SLEEPING WITH THE ENEMY IS A WAY OF LIFE ON THE NET In the wake of last week's news stories on America Online's simultaneous courtships with Netscape, Microsoft, and finally AT&T, too, industry observers are reaching the meltdown point on trying to track the incestuous nature of Internet alliances. "It's driving me nuts. My head hurts right now," says research expert Gary Arlen. "Everybody wants to find his place at the orgy, and if you don't get your mattress staked out now, you may miss it completely." Nick Donatiello, president of Odyssey Ventures, says: "It's like watching weddings on a soap opera. Everybody's marrying and divorcing and remarrying within the space of 10 days." And CompuServe VP Scott Kauffman quips: "It's awfully bigamy to even talk about monogamy at a time when everyone seems to be sleeping with everyone." (Wall Street Journal 18 Mar 96 B4) The view from AOL? "In our view, everybody is a potential partner -- until they shoot at us," says AOL CEO Steve Case. (Information Week 11 Mar 96 p10) HUBBARD SUPPORTS ONE-CHANNEL DIGITAL TV TRANSITION Stanley Hubbard, chairman of Hubbard Broadcasting, says the current flap in Congress over whether to charge broadcasters for the extra channel they'll need to make the transition to digital programming could be a moot point. Hubbard's top engineer confirmed last week that he had concluded preliminary testing on whether digital and analog signals could be combined in a single 6 MHz channel. "Conceptually, I think it's possible," he concludes. Hubbard advocates combining the signals on one channel, and suggests that television manufacturers could build sets with both analog and digital receivers, allowing broadcasters to decide on their own when to turn off their analog signal. (Broadcasting & Cable 18 Mar 96 p12) JOB SEEKERS DISPUTE SHORTAGE OF SOFTWARE WORKERS Frustrated by extensive yet unsuccessful job searches, 75% of callers to the Software Human Resources Council disputed claims made in a report that tens of thousands of placements for software workers go unfilled. The job seekers say companies limp along for six months without in-house systems people because they are looking for the perfect applicant. (Toronto Star 19 Mar 96 F3) FRENCH BOOK BANNED, THEN PIRATED The book "Le Grand Secret," banned by a French judge on the grounds that it violates the privacy of the family of the late French President Francois Mitterand, has turned up on various Web sites in violation of copyright law. One publishing executive says, "Just as we teach our children not to steal toys, just as we teach our children not to plagiarize, we have to get across the message that you don't steal from the Internet." However, French government officials are less than enthusiastic about aggressively enforcing copyright protection for a book that has been banned. (New York Times 18 Mar 96 A1) CANADIAN TV RATING SYSTEM STUDIED Washington officials want to study the Canadian approach to rating television programs. Similarly, Britain is looking to Canada for help in its fight against violence on television following last week's massacre of small children in Scotland. (Ottawa Citizen 19 Mar 96 A6) VIRTUAL UNIVERSITY The Open University of Catalonia now has a pilot group of 200 students, scattered throughout northern Spain, connected to lecturers, tutors, and learning materials via electronic communications and studying business or educational psychology using the Catalan language. By 2000 there will be 11,000 students. < http://www.uoc.es >. (Financial Times 16/17 Mar 96) GINGRICH URGES TOP-TO-BOTTOM CHANGE OF EDUCATION Suggesting that the quality of elementary and secondary education is dragging down the quality of higher education, House of Representatives Speaker Newt Gingrich challenged a group of university presidents by saying: "None of you would accept from your suppliers what public education sends you. You would fire them, or you would sue them, or you would insist on a new standard." Tinkering won't work, because "the problem you are trapped into is that you can't change anything unless you change everything." The Speaker also urged the presidents to sharpen their focus on "lifetime learning," because of the increasing need for people to re-educate themselves to accommodate multiple career changes. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution 19 Mar 96 D1) NYNEX ANTES UP IN INTERNET ACCESS GAME Nynex will join AT&T, MCI in offering Internet access to residents and businesses. "It's going to end up becoming a normal part of a package that all telephone companies have to offer," says an analyst at CS First Boston. Meanwhile, Bell Atlantic is putting the finishing touches on its Internet access plan, and several other Baby Bell brethren plan announcements soon. (Investor's Business Daily 20 Mar 96 A7) TECHNICAL FIX MAY RESOLVE ONLINE COPYRIGHT ISSUES In the next year or so, distributors of electronic information will be able to include encryption devices that prevent customers from passing usable copies onto other unauthorized users. Other software under development will create hidden digital "watermarks" that automatically attach themselves to a file, enabling providers to identify all users. "Copyright law will start to take a back seat to technology," says an intellectual property consultant. "Anything that you do with a piece of content" will be traceable. (Chronicle of Higher Education 22 Mar 96 A23) DISNEY TOWN TO OFFER ONLINE HEALTHCARE The planned community being built by Walt Disney Co. in central Florida will provide its residents online access to basic health advice and medical files, and eventually will offer telemedical conferencing that would allow patients, physicians and pharmacists to exchange information. "It's pushing the envelope of health empowerment," says the CEO of Celebration Health, as the medical network is called. (Tampa Tribune 20 Mar 96 B&F1) AOL SITE NO. 1 IN WEB SURVEY America Online's home page ranked No. 1 as the most popular Web site among U.S. consumers last month, according to a PC-Meter Sweeps survey by NPD Group. The next most popular sites were various search engines, with Prodigy and CompuServe ranking sixth and seventh , respectively. University of Michigan came in eighth for its popular weather database. PC-Meter offers Web site research and analysis, complete with demographic data on online users. (Investor's Business Daily 20 Mar 96 A6) Meanwhile, officials at AOL have terminated a member's account after it was used to disseminate obscene images in a children's area. The area was already routinely being monitored by AOL staff, but the company says it will beef up its scrutiny and is examining stronger controls for parents. (Wall Street Journal 20 Mar 96 B4) STOCK TRADERS' "RAP SHEETS" ON THE NET The National Association of Securities Dealers has plans to post an enormous database containing information on all Wall Street brokers and their firms on the Internet, possibly as early as next year. Investors will be able to get detailed information on 505,000 brokers, including any censures, fines and settlements from arbitrations or court decisions. Until the Web site is available, investors can call 1-800-289-9999 for broker information. (Tampa Tribune 20 Mar 96 B&F8) AT&T TAKES NOTES ON THE NET After ditching the proprietary AT&T Network Notes service last month, AT&T has announced it will integrate a new, open standards release of Lotus Notes server software with its Internet service. The new Network Notes software will be compatible with other software, including Web browsers made by Netscape and Microsoft. (Investor's Business Daily 21 Mar 96 A19) FCC WARNS CANADA The Federal Communications Commission warned Canadian companies could face trouble breaking into the newly- deregulated American communications market because of the federal government's attitude toward U.S. investment in Canada. Commissioner Scott Harris said Canadian restrictions on foreign ownership of domestic telecommunications companies could be met with similar reciprocal actions in the U.S. He pointed out cultural issues like the recent actions against the Canadianized Sports Illustrated magazine and Country Music Television have created a feeling in Congress that Canada is treating the U.S. unfairly. (Toronto Star 21 Mar 96 D3) LAPTOP SALES ON THE RISE After moderate (in computer market terms) growth last year of 15%, the worldwide laptop market is expected to increase by 30% in 1996, according to Dataquest Inc. Up until now, most laptops have been sold with a 486 processor, but Dataquest expects the transition to Pentium chips to be completed this year. The top seller last year was Toshiba, with Compaq, NEC, and IBM following. (Investor's Business Daily 21 Mar 96 A17) GENERATION X SHOULD BE "GENERATION PC" A survey of 3,200 respondents by Custom Research Inc. shows 99% of people born after 1971 had used a computer before the age of 10. More than 66% of those under age 25 called themselves "intermediate," "expert" or "power" users. Of those born after 1971, only 7% had used a computer before age 10, and only 19% rated themselves "intermediate" or above. The survey was conducted via an electornic kiosk that's part of a traveling Smithsonian exhibit. (Investor's Business Daily 21 Mar 96 A8) SPIES WHO CAME IN FROM THE COLD Activision's computer-based spy adventure features real-life spooks William Colby, former head of the CIA, and Oleg Kalugin, the former Soviet KGB chief, as part of the interactive game. The company is sponsoring a Spycraft Online Spy Hunt sweepstakes as a promotion, and players can search for clues on America Online, CompuServe, and at the Company's Web site <http://www.activision.com/ >. The grand prize is a trip to Washington, DC. (Information Week 11 Mar 96 p12) WIT-TRADE SUSPENDS STOCK-TRADING ON WEB The Spring Street Brewing Company, which was the first company to have attempted to sell stocks through a World Wide Web page, has suspended its activities, pending a review by the Securities and Exchange Commission to decide whether the trading system should be registered as a broker-dealer under the 1934 Securities Exchange Act. (New York Times 21 Mar 96 C10) CLENDENIN RATES BELLSOUTH'S PROGRAMS TO AID EDUCATION Giving a "report card" to his company's $239.5 million support of education since 1991, BellSouth CEO John Clendenin awarded it an A for effort and a C+ for impact. "The complexity of dealing with this array of problems affecting America's education system is really overwhelming, no question. So you make little dents. There's no one solution, no brass ring sitting out there." (Atlanta Journal-Constitution 21 Mar 96 E1) INFORMATION HIGHWAY OF BABEL Most PBS stations will broadcast a "Firing Line" debate Friday night (22 Mar) on the issue: "Resolved: The Government has the right to regulate the Internet." Participants in the debate include William F. Buckley, Arianna Huffington, Cathy Cleaver, Reid Hoffman, Esther Dyson, Ira Glasser, Susan Estrich, John Perry Barlow. TV critic Walter Goodman screened the show and judged it to be a "Highway of Babel." (New York Times 21 Mar 96 B3) Edupage is written by John Gehl (email@example.com) & Suzanne Douglas (firstname.lastname@example.org). Voice: 404-371-1853, Fax: 404-371-8057. Technical support is provided by the Office of Information Technology, University of North Carolina. EDUPAGE is what you've just finished reading. To subscribe to Edupage: send a message to: email@example.com and in the body of the message type: subscribe edupage Marvin Minsky (assuming that your name is Marvin Minsky; if it's not, substitute your own name). ... To cancel, send a message to: firstname.lastname@example.org and in the body of the message type: unsubscribe edupage... Subscription problems: email@example.com. EDUCOM REVIEW is our bimonthly print magazine on learning, communications, and information technology. Subscriptions are $18 a year in the U.S.; send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. When you do, we'll ring a little bell, because we'll be so happy! Choice of bell is yours: a small dome with a button, like the one on the counter at the dry cleaners with the sign "Ring bell for service"; or a small hand bell; or a cathedral bell; or a door bell; or a chime; or a glockenspiel. Your choice. But ring it! EDUCOM UPDATE is our twice-a-month electronic summary of organizational news and events. To subscribe to the Update: send a message to: email@example.com and in the body of the message type: subscribe update John McCarthy (assuming that your name is John McCarthy; if it's not, substitute your own name). INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY CONFERENCE The CAUSE organization's annual conference on information technology in higher education is scheduled for the end of this month in New Orleans. The conference will bring together administrators, academicians and other managers of information resources. For full conference information check out <http://cause-www.colorado.edu > or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. ARCHIVES & TRANSLATIONS. For archive copies of Edupage or Update, ftp or gopher to educom.edu or see URL: < http://www.educom.edu/>. For the French edition of Edupage, send mail to email@example.com with the subject "subscribe"; or see < http://www.ijs.com >. For the Hebrew edition, send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org containing : SUBSCRIBE Leketnet-Word6 <name> or see < http://www.kinetica.co.il/ newsletters/leketnet/ >. For the Hungarian edition, send mail to: send mail to email@example.com. An Italian edition is available on Agora' Telematica; connection and/or free subscription via BT-Tymnet and Sprint (login: <agora) or via telnet <agora.stm.it; mail: <firstname.lastname@example.org for info. For the Portuguese edition, contact email@example.com with the message SUB EDUPAGE-P Seu Primeiro Nome Seu Sobrenome. For the Spanish edition, send mail edunews@nc- rj.rnp.br with the message SUB EDUPAGE-E Su Primer Nombre, Su Apellido. Educom -- Transforming Education Through Information Technology Frequently Asked Questions for the EPSON Zip Drive WHERE DO I GET THE ACCESSORIES FOR THE ZIP DRIVE? Call EPSON at 1-800-922-8911. CAN YOU CONNECT A PRINTER IF YOU HAVE THE PARALLEL MODEL? Yes, the parallel ZIP model has a second port that lets you connect to your printer. CAN THE ZIP DRIVE BE DAISY-CHAINED WITH OTHER SCSI DEVICES? Yes, The SCSI model can be put in a SCSI chain just like any SCSI device. WHAT IS THE SHELF LIFE FOR A ZIP DISK? Zip disks have a 10-year shelf life. IS COMPRESSION USED IN THE ZIP DRIVE? As with a hard disk drive, you can compress a Zip drive using commercial software compression packages, including Stacker and backup software. However, the drive does not automatically perform any data compression during write or read operations. WHAT ZIP DRIVE MODELS ARE AVAILABLE? SCSI and parallel. The SCSI model can be used with a Macintosh or a PC that has a ZIP-compatible SCSI adapter. The SCSI model has two 25-pin SCSI ports (for connection to the host and for daisy-chaining), a SCSI ID switch, and a SCSI termination switch. You can use the parallel model only with a PC. WHICH SCSI ADAPTERS CAN BE USED WITH THE SCSI ZIP MODEL? Adaptec, Iomega, or other ASPI-compatible SCSI adapters with SCSI driver software. WHY IS THE DRIVE CALLED ZIP? Zip indicates speed, mobility, simplicity, and security. IS AN INTERNAL ZIP DRIVE AVAILABLE? No, it is an external drive only. DOES ZIP USE BERNOULLI TECHNOLOGY? NO. Zip uses a different design. WHAT IS INCLUDED WITH THE ZIP DRIVE? The Zip package contains the drive itself, cable, power supply, operating software, and a 100MB starter disk containing Zip tools software. WHAT OPERATING SYSTEMS ARE SUPPORTED? MS-DOS 4.x or greater, DR/NOVELL DOS 6.0 or greater, Compaq DOS 3.31 or greater, Windows 3.1, and Windows 95. OS/2 version 2.0 or greater, with the purchase of the optional Iomega OS/2 driver software package (OAD For OS/2 version 2.33 or greater). Macintosh System 6.0.7 or greater (System 7 or greater is required for full functionality). WHAT ARE THE MINIMUM COMPUTER REQUIREMENTS? IBM PCs and compatibles must use DOS 4.x or greater and have 640K RAM. Windows 3.1 requires a minimum 2MB RAM (4 or greater is recommended). Macintosh computers must use System 6.0.7 or greater (System 7 or greater is required for full functionality) and have 4MB of RAM. The hardware must be a MAC SE or greater. IS THE ZIP DRIVE COMPATIBLE WITH THE POWERBOOK MACINTOSH? Yes, a optional cable adapter is needed for attachment. WHICH IS FASTER ON THE PC -- SCSI OR PARALLEL? The SCSI model is 2 to 5 times faster, depending on the system configuration. The parallel model is easier to connect and compatible with nearly all PCs. CAN YOU SET THE ZIP DRIVE IN THE VERTICAL POSITION? Yes, the drive's rubber feet support both horizontal and vertical positions. CAN YOU READ A REGULAR 3 1/2" DISKETTE IN THE ZIP DRIVE? No, only Zip disks are compatible. ARE THE DISKS RUGGED? Yes, they can withstand an 1000 G shock (an 8 foot drop) without any harm to your data. ARE HIGHER CAPACITY ZIP DRIVES POSSIBLE? In the future. HOW IS POWER PROVIDED TO THE ZIP DRIVE? It uses an EPSON AC power adapter. WHAT ARE THE SPECIFICATIONS FOR THE ZIP DRIVE? Performance z 1.4MB/second maximum sustained transfer rate z 29 millisecond average seek time z 32K buffer size z 60MB/minute SCSI throughput z 20MB/minute parallel throughput z 3/3 second average start/stop time z 15-minute long format time (surface verify) for disk z 5 second short format time for disk z Software selectable drive auto spin down Reliability z 10 errors in 10 (13) bits (hard errors) drive data bit transfer z 8ft/1000 Gs disk drop height/shock tolerance z 10-year estimated disk estimated shelf life z 100MB (or 25MB) disk storage capacity z MS-DOS, Windows 3.1, Windows 95, MAC, and OS/2 compatibility Physical Specifications Temperature ranges: z Operation -- 50 to 90 degrees F (10 to 32 degrees C) z Storage --8 to 126 degrees F (-22 to 52 degrees C) z Shipping --40 to 140 degrees F (-40 to 60 degrees C) z Fixed or removable operational mode z Horizontal or vertical orientation z 5-year service life for drive z 1 year warranty on drive z Limited lifetime warranty on disks Dimensions: Zip Drive Height -- 1.5 in. Width -- 5.35 in. Length -- 7.26 in. Weight -- 1.05 lbs. Zip Disk Height -- 25 in. Width -- 4 in. Length -- 4 in. Weight -- .09 lbs. z SCSI or parallel interfaces available z 5 V, 1 Amp continuous drive power requirements z 1.7 Amp peak Specifications depend on your system. Installing a SCSI Model ZIP Drive on a Computer that Uses MS-DOS or Windows This document expains how to install a Zip drive with a SCSI (Small Computer System Interface) interface on a PC that uses MS-DOS or Windows. If you still have problems after reading these instructions, see the SCSI Zip Troubleshooting Web Pages or "Troubleshooting" in the EPSON Zip Installation/User's Guide. SCSI Requirements: The PC must have a SCSI interface adapter with an external connector for the Zip drive. (EPSON's Zip drive is compatible with Adaptec SCSI adapters and most other major brands that use an ASPI device driver.) Follow the steps below to install the drive: 1. Unpack your Zip drive and accessories. 2. Turn the computer OFF. (Be sure the computer is turned off whenever you connect the Zip drive to it.) 3. Connect one end of the Zip data cable to the Zip connector on the back of your drive. (Only the correct end of the cable will fit the drive). When the cable is connected, tighten the connector thumb screws. 4. Connect the other end of the cable to the computer SCSI connector. Be sure the connector you use for the Zip drive is a SCSI connector and not the parallel (printer) port connector. Some SCSI adapter connectors are similar in size and shape to the parallel port, but the parallel port will not work with this Zip drive. If the adapter in your computer has a 50-pin SCSI connector, connect the Zip drive using a 25-to-50-pin SCSI cable or a cable converter. If you need a cable or converter, call your computer dealer or contact EPSON at 1-800-922-8911. 5. If you want to, you can connect your Zip drive to another SCSI device or another Zip drive by using another SCSI cable (usually a 25-to-50-pin cable). Instead of connecting the Zip drive to the computer, you could connect the Zip drive to the connector on the device at the end of an existing SCSI chain using a 25-to-50 pin SCSI cable or a using cable converter along with the Zip data cable. When you connect the Zip drive to another SCSI device, check the SCSI Guidelines section of the EPSON Zip Installation/User's Guide to make sure the SCSI ID and termination on the Zip drive are set correctly. 6. Connect the external power supply. (The power cord fits in the groove on the side of the Zip drive.) 7. Caution: Use only an EPSON-approved Zip power supply. Other power supplies may damage the drive. Also, to make it easier to move your Zip drive between home and work, you may want to purchase an extra power supply and cable. Call 1-800-922-8911 to order Zip accessories. 8. Check the green power light to make sure the power supply is OK. If the power light does not come on, refer to "Troubleshooting" in your EPSON Zip Installation/User's Guide. 9. Turn your computer ON and insert the 100MB Tools disk into the Zip drive. Always make sure the green power light is on before inserting (or ejecting) a Zip disk. When you insert a Zip disk, the amber data light on the Zip drive flashes momentarily. 10. Insert the Install disk for Windows/MS-DOS into the computer's diskette drive. 11. Start the Setup or Install program as described below and follow the screen instructions to install your Zip software. Windows 3.1 Users: 1. In the Windows Program Manager, select the File menu and choose Run. 2. In the Command Line box, type a:setup (or b:setup if you are using drive B), then click OK or press Enter. MS-DOS Users: 1. At the DOS prompt, type a:guest (or b:guest if you are using drive B), and press Enter. 2. Notice the drive letter Guest assigns to your Zip drive. If the drive is assigned to drive letter D, type d:\scsi\install, and press Enter. If the drive is assigned to drive letter E, type e:\scsi\install, and press Enter, and so on. If you need help, see the SCSI Zip Troubleshooting Web Pages or "Troubleshooting" in the EPSON Zip Installation/User's Guide. There is also troubleshooting information on the Zip Install disk in the README.TXT file. Windows 95 Users 1. Open My Computer, and double click the diskette drive icon. Then double click Setup95. Note: If the system runs slowly after you install Tools 95, reboot the computer. 2. Access Zip Tools by clicking the drive icon in My Computer or Windows Explorer with the right mouse button. EPSON tools available on the drive shortcut menus include: Copy Machine Lets you copy one disk to another quickly and easily, using a single drive or two different drives on your system. Format Includes a short format option for erasing a disk quickly and a long format option for verifying the disk surface. You can also choose to make the disk bootable or assign a volume name. Protect Lets you select software protection options and password security for a Zip disk. Status Gives you quick access to information about your drive and disks. Properties Provides special information about the Zip drive and the installed disk. This tool also lets you set startup preferences and drive sleep time. Properties also contains diagnostics for the drive. In addition to the tools listed on the drive shortcut menus, Copy Machine, Guest95, and the Zip help files are available from the Tools 95 Program Group. Just click the Start button and point to Programs, then Tools 95. Guest95 Allows you to move your Zip drive from one computer to another one with ease, so there is no need to reboot the system when you add a Zip drive. Simply attach the Zip drive to any compatible PC and run the Guest95 program to assign a drive letter. Any time you install new Zip hardware on your system, you can use Guest95 to load the drivers needed by Windows 95. You can run Guest95 from the Tools installation disk or from the EPSON Zip Tools Program Group. Refer to the Guest95 Help file for detailed information. Note: The Zip Tools disk contains files in both Windows 95 and Macintosh format. As soon as you load the Tools disk on a Windows 95 system, the Macintosh-format files become unusable. However, the disk does not automatically release all the Macintosh space so it can be used in Windows 95. To release this space, you must remove the write protection on the disk and "Reclaim" the tools disk, using the steps below. 1. Double click the My Computer icon. 2. Double click the C: hard drive icon. 3. Double click the Tools 95 icon to open the folder. 4. Double click the Reclaim icon to run the program. Fixing Conflicts with the Adapter If there is a conflict with the SCSI adapter, Setup95 will not be able to install the Tools 95 software. In this case, you will see a message from Guest95 telling you how to reconfigure adapter settings to resolve the conflict. The procedure below, which is also included in the Guest95 Help file, tells how to resolve the conflict. 1. Quit the Setup95 program. 2. Click the Start button on the computer Desktop and point to Settings, then Control Panel. 3. Double click the System icon and choose the Device Manager tab. 4. Select SCSI Controllers; then choose the adapter you are using and click Properties. (Windows 95 may be able to mark the adapter that needs to be reconfigured.) 5. Choose the Resources tab and change the resource settings as needed to eliminate any conflicts Windows 95 identified. Refer to the documentation that came with your adapter for information on optional settings. 6. Shut down the system, open the computer, and adjust the adapter's switch or jumper settings to match the resources set in the System Control Panel in step 5. Refer to the adapter's documentation for detailed instructions on changing adapter settings. If you need to reconfigure a plug and play adapter, you must see the computer's ICU program to change the adapter settings. Check the manual that came with your computer or contact your computer manufacturer for information on how to resolve the conflict. 7. Restart the system and rerun Setup95. Congratulations! When the software installation is complete, your Zip drive is ready to use. You can use the Zip drive just like any other drive on your system. Store and copy files to and from Zip drive in the same way as for your other drives. For additional information on using your new drive and Zip Tools software, refer to the EPSON Zip Installation/User's Guide. If you want to use your Zip drive on a Macintosh as well as on your PC, the GUEST program on the Install diskette for Macintosh provides temporary access for the Zip drive on any Macintosh. For full Zip benefits, call 1-800- 922-8911 to order a copy of Zip Tools software for Macintosh. Zip SCSI Installation Problems If you have problems installing the Zip SCSI drive, the EPSON Zip Installation/User's Guide contains Troubleshooting and SCSI Guidelines sections to help you install the Zip drive properly. The following information will help you with some of the most common installation problems. If the computer is not recognizing the Zip drive or the EPSON Zip Software cannot find the Zip drive: 1. Check the Zip power supply connection. Make sure the green power light on the drive is ON. 2. Check the connection for the Zip drive data cable, and verify that every cable connection is straight and secure. Tighten all the connector screws completely. 3. Make sure the Zip drive is connected to the SCSI connector on the computer. 4. Set the Zip drive to an unused SCSI ID and make sure the termination is set properly. If the EPSON SETUP or GUEST utility hangs the system: 1. Make sure data cable connections are straight and secure. Tighten all connector screws completely. 2. Be sure the Zip drive is connected to a compatible SCSI adapter. 3. Read the GUESTHLP.TXT file on the EPSON DOS/Windows Install diskette for help. Setup Could not Find the EPSON Zip Tools Disk [ SCSI Model Zip Drive ] This page provides general diagnostics to help resolve the problem. Before answering the questions below, be sure that the Zip drive is connected and plugged in. Then, after you have tried to install the driver and Tools software, check the items below. ASPI Device Drivers for SCSI Adapters EPSON Zip drives are compatible with most SCSI controllers. However, the SCSI adapter must have an ASPI, or 100%- compatible device driver. If you do not have an ASPI device manager, contact the adapter manufacturer for more information. If an ASPI device manager is not available for this model SCSI adapter, use another SCSI adapter for full compatibility. If the controller is fully compatible, continue with the troubleshooting checklist below: If the Green Power light on the front of the drive is lit, check the items below: 1. Check the data cable. 2. Make sure the Zip drive is connected to a SCSI controller connector (not the parallel port), or to a SCSI connector in a chain with other devices. 3. Try reconnecting the cable, and make sure that all connections are secure. Q: Is your Zip drive attached to an ASPI-compatible SCSI adapter? If so: 1. Reboot the computer. 2. Insert the EPSON Zip Install diskette, and type a:guest info and press Enter at the MS-DOS prompt. Q: Is the Zip drive assigned a drive letter? If your answer to the question above was [Yes], can you read the Zip Tools disk? If Yes: Run Setup again. If it runs successfully, the Tools are installed and ready to run. If No: The SCSI controller may have an incompatible ASPI driver. Try the drive with another SCSI adapter. Q: If the Zip drive was not assigned a drive letter, are you using an ASPI- compatible controller? 1. Make sure the ASPI manager for your controller is loading. 2. Did GUEST report any information about your SCSI controller? If GUEST reported information about the SCSI controller, the problem is caused by cabling, SCSI termination, or SCSI ID. Reconnect the hardware. If GUEST did not report information, it could not load the ASPI manager for your SCSI adapter. This may be caused by a port address or IRQ conflict. Refer to the SCSI adapter manual for information on how to change these settings. If the Green Power light on the front of the drive is lit, check the items below: 1. Is the Zip Drive is receiving power? Make sure that you are using an EPSON Zip Power Supply. Check all power cables and connections. Make sure that the power supply is plugged in to a working outlet. Q: Does the green light come on now? If not, either the drive or the power supply are damaged. Contact your computer dealer or EPSON at 1-800-922-8911. Zip SCSI Troubleshooting The Green Light on the EPSON Zip Drive is Not ON z The Zip drive may not be receiving power. Make sure you are using an EPSON Zip power supply and that it is connected to the Zip drive as shown in the EPSON Zip Installation/User's Guide. Check all power cables and connections. Be sure the power supply is connected to a working outlet. z Is the green power light still off? If so, disconnect all cables from the Zip drive except the power cable. If the green light still is not ON, stop. The drive or power supply may be damaged. z If the green light is lit when all other cables are disconnected except the power cable, is the Zip drive connected to the computer's SCSI port correctly? Make sure the data cable for the Zip drive is connected as shown in the EPSON Zip Installation/User's Guide, and that the cable connections are straight and secure. Tighten all connector screws firmly and evenly. Verify the connection both on the Zip drive end and the computer end. z Make sure the Zip drive is connected to the connector for the SCSI adapter -- not to the parallel port. z If you have connected other SCSI devices to your Zip drive, make sure that each one has a different SCSI ID number (no duplicates). If you need to change a SCSI ID setting, turn the computer off and power down all devices, change the conflicting SCSI ID, and power up again. z Make sure the SCSI chain is properly terminated at each end and that termination is OFF (or removed) for other devices in the chain. Only the first and last devices in the SCSI chain should be terminated. z Make sure the SCSI adapter card is installed in the computer correctly. z Although most SCSI adapters work with the EPSON Zip drive, some do not. The SCSI adapter must use an ASPI or 100%-compatible device driver. Software Configuration and Options After verifying all steps above, use the following software options are available to help solve and debug problems. Is the Zip driver loading properly? Verify the Zip driver software has been installed. Two files are required to use a Zip drive. GUEST.EXE and the appropriate ASPI manager for the SCSI adapter being used. (For your convenience, the EPSON provides drivers for some common SCSI adapters.) Verify that the following files are located in the ZIPTOOLS directory: ASPIPPA3.SYS - ASPI manager for the PPA-3 Adapter & Parallel Port Zip. ASPIPC16.SYS - ASPI manager for the Zip Zoom & PC1600 adapters. ASPI1616.SYS - ASPI manager for the Iomega PC1616 adapter. ASPIPC8.SYS - ASPI manager for the Iomega PC800 adapter. ASPIPC2.SYS - ASPI manager for the Iomega PC2x adapter. ASPIPC4.SYS - ASPI manager for the Iomega PC4x adapter. See the GUESTHLP.TXT file on the Windows/DOS Install diskette for help using GUEST with a SCSI adapter. Verify that the AUTOEXEC.BAT file contains a line to start GUEST.EXE. For example: C:\ZIPTOOLS\GUEST.EXE If you complete the steps above and there is still no drive letter for the Zip drive, use the INFO command line switch in the GUEST utility to debug the problem. The INFO switch causes GUEST to display the ASPI information. Check what the ASPI manager reports. The following steps outline how the GUEST driver operates, and how to determine where the problem is located. 1. GUEST attempts to load the ASPI managers and looks for an adapter and drive to support. If no information is displayed, verify the ASPI managers are located in the \ZIPTOOLS directory or on the Windows/DOS Install diskette. 2. When the ASPI manager attempts to load, it will display information about the adapter and any devices attached to it. If the ASPI manager finds no adapter, this may indicate conflict in the a port address or IRQ. Verify that both the port address and IRQ settings on the adapter board are set to unused settings. 3. If the ASPI manager finds the adapter but not the attached devices, this generally indicates a connection problem. Check all cable connections for the Zip drive and any other devices and make sure they are straight and secure. Tighten all connector screws completely. Known Problems and Solutions GUEST Locks up when Loading If GUEST locks up when loading or if drive C: no longer accessible, are you booting from a SCSI adapter? If you are booting your machine from a SCSI adapter, and GUEST hangs the system when it tries to load, the ASPI manager for the SCSI adapter needs to be loaded in the CONFIG.SYS file. For Example: DEVICE=C:\SCSI\ASPI2DOS.SYS -- ASPI manager for the Adaptec 1520 After rebooting with the SCSI ASPI manager loaded, rerun SETUP or GUEST. GUEST Locks up the System If GUEST locks up the system when it is loading from either the AUTOEXEC.BAT file or the MS-DOS prompt, GUEST might be scanning for different SCSI adapters from the one you are using. To solve the problem, edit the GUEST.INI file and insert a semicolon (;) as the first character in the lines containing ASPI managers that are not being used. (This makes the software treat these lines as remarks.) The GUEST.EXE program uses the GUEST.INI file to load ASPI managers. Below is the default GUEST.INI file: [----Scan for existing ASPI managers---] SCAN=ON [----Load ASPI managers----] ASPI=ASPIPPA3.SYS SCAN /INFO SL360=NO SMC=NO ASPI=ASPI1616.SYS SCAN /INFO ASPI=ASPIPC16.SYS SCAN /INFO ASPI=ASPIPC8.SYS SCAN /INFO ASPI=ASPIPC2.SYS SCAN /INFO ASPI=ASPIPC4.SYS SCAN /INFO If you are running the Zip drive from the Zip Zoom accelerator you will need to insert a semicolon (;) in front of all other ASPI managers, except the ASPIPC16.SYS manager that controls the Zip Zoom adapter. You also should turn the SCAN option OFF. Here is the edited GUEST.INI file: [----scan for existing ASPI managers---] SCAN=OFF [----Load aspi managers----] ;ASPI=ASPIPPA3.SYS SCAN /INFO SL360=NO SMC=NO ;ASPI=ASPI1616.SYS SCAN /INFO ;ASPI=ASPIPC16.SYS SCAN /INFO ;ASPI=ASPIPC8.SYS SCAN /INFO ;ASPI=ASPIPC2.SYS SCAN /INFO ;ASPI=ASPIPC4.SYS SCAN /INFO Once you have made these changes the GUEST program should load without error. Using GUEST with ASPI Managers The GUEST utility uses ASPI managers to communicate with the devices connected to a SCSI host adapter. The Install diskette for Windows/DOS includes a set of ASPI managers for some adapters. If you have a host adapter that uses ASPI manager software not contained on the diskette, you may need to edit the GUEST.INI file and add a line for this ASPI manager. (If the adapter does not have an ASPI manager, GUEST will not be able to operate.) Edit the GUEST.INI file as described below: Use a text editor to open the GUEST.INI file. The GUEST.INI file is a text file on the Install diskette for Windows/DOS. You can use the Notepad in Windows, the DOS EDIT program, or any other ASCII text editor to edit the GUEST.INI file. Add a command line for the ASPI manager, using the following syntax: ASPI=<full path for ASPI manager><ASPI manager filename> The following line is an example for an ASPI2DOS ASPI manager located in the directory C:\ASPI: ASPI=C:\ASPI\ASPI2DOS.SYS If you do not know the path or filename for the ASPI manager, see the documentation that came with the adapter or ASPI software. Save the changes to the GUEST.INI file and exit the text editor. If you are using an editor that has a variety of file formats, be sure to save the GUEST.INI file as ASCII text or MS-DOS text. Moving GUEST.EXE Before the Windows Start Command in the AUTOEXEC.BAT File 1. Use a text editor to open the AUTOEXEC.BAT file in the C:\ directory. 2. Find the line: C:\ZIPTOOLS\GUEST.EXE. This line should be the last line or near the bottom of the file. 3. Find a line similar to one of the following: WIN or C:\WINDOWS\WIN. This line starts the Windows program when the computer boots. 4. Move the line C:\ZIPTOOLS\GUEST.EXE above the line that starts Windows. (Use Cut and Paste to move the GUEST.EXE line.) 5. Move the line that loads Smartdrive (e.g., C:\DOS\SMARTDRV.EXE) immediately after the GUEST.EXE line. 6. Verify that the line that loads MSCDEX.EXE is before the GUEST.EXE. If not, move it before GUEST. (Make sure there is only one GUEST.EXE line in the AUTOEXEC.BAT file. If there are two GUEST.EXE lines, delete the one below the WIN command.) 7. Save the AUTOEXEC.BAT file, exit the editor, and reboot the computer. Recovering After Zip Tools Setup Fails Problem: If Zip Tools fails to install properly, or if the system hangs or was powered down during setup, the Windows Startup group will contain a Zip Setup icon that will attempt to run each time Windows is started. Solution: Delete the Zip Setup icon in the Windows Startup group and reinstall the Zip Setup program. Conflicts with the SYSTEM.INI and WIN.INI Files SYSTEM.INI Conflicts z Problem: When you use the Windows Printing System and Zip parallel drive, the system freezes when the drive is accessed from Windows. The drive functions normally under MS-DOS. z Solution: Disable the line WPSLPT1=1 in the SYSTEM.INI file, under the section [386ENH] by placing a semicolon (;) in front of the line, as shown below. Printing is not affected by this change. ;WPSLPT=1 z Problem: When Ram Doubler is installed, the Copy Machine command reads very slowly, and when the operation finishes it reports the wrong files and wrong number of MB copied. Also, the icons for the source and target disks and the computer in the middle never appear. z Solution: Boot Windows with both shift keys held down. This is a temporary fix, which you will need to do whenever using Copy Machine. z Problem: When you use WinPrint 1000, the system locks while accessing the Zip drive in Windows. The drive operates normally under MS-DOS. z Solution: Select the WinPrint Manager Icon; select Options; then DOS Print Settings. Change the options from LPT1 to NONE. WIN.INI Conflicts z Problem: When you load the LBUTTONS mouse driver for Compaq computers, the system may hang in Windows and write errors occur when you try to copy files. z Solution: Disable LBUTTONS in the WIN.INI file by placing a semicolon (;) in front of the line, as shown below. ;LOAD=LBUTTONS.EXE If these measures do not solve the SYSTEM.INI or WIN.INI conflict, call Technical Support at 1-800-922-8911 and have a copy of your current SYSTEM.INI and WIN.INI files ready to discuss. Kids Computing Corner Frank Sereno, Editor The Kids' Computing Corner My Very First Software Hybrid format Windows/Macintosh CD-ROM for ages 2 to 5 msrp $29.95 T/Maker Company 1390 Villa Street Mountain View, CA 94041 415-962-0195 Program Requirements IBM Macintosh OS: Windows 3.1 OS: System 6.0.7 CPU: 486 or higher CPU: LCIII series or higher HD Space: 1 MB HD Space: 1 MB Memory: 4 MB Memory: 4 MB Graphics: 640 by 480 with 256 colors Graphics: 256 colors, 13" monitor CD-ROM: Double-speed recommended CD-ROM: Double-speed recommended Audio: 8-bit Windows compatible sound card Other: printer optional, mouse Other: printer optional review by Frank Sereno My Very First Software is a friendly and educational package that will delight younger children as they learn important computer skills. Filled with eye-catching graphics and excellent audio, this assortment of activities will maintain your child's interest for many fun-filled hours. The package consists of three programs on a single CD-ROM. Cybee, a friendly and enthusiastic robot coach, is the host for each program. My Very First Software One teaches basic mousing skills. Program Two focuses on more advanced skills such as double-clicking and dragging with the mouse. The third program encourages children to interact with the keyboard. Each program has three unique activities and each has Word Fun, a multimedia glossary of computing terms. The terms are different for each program. The activities use a very simple interface. Upon beginning any activity, Cybee will instruct the child on his mission. Each activity is played on a pad with four control buttons. The question mark button starts Cybee Help. Cybee explains how to use the mouse or keyboard for that program. A printer button will print a line art picture of the current pad screen. These printed pictures are especially suitable for coloring. A large arrow will cause the pad to scroll to the next screen in the activity. A large button at the bottom of the pad will take the child back to the main screen. He can also click on Cybee to hear the instructions for the current activity again. My Very First Software One's three unique activities are Flip Flop, Peekaboo and Find It. In Flip Flop, your child removes tiles covering a picture by moving the cursor over them. Cybee will say a short rhyme describing the picture after the picture is revealed. To succeed in Peekaboo, your child must find hidden images on the screen by moving the mouse around while looking for visual cues and listening for audible cues. When he finds a cue, he clicks his mouse button to see the new image. Find It will develop children's skill in auditory discrimination. He will see an image filled with objects that make noise. He will then hear a sound and he must click on the object that makes that noise. Double Click, Color Stamps and Drag and See are the activities in My Very First Software Two. In Double Click, your child will see a grouping of three objects. These are hidden somewhere in the picture behind doors, under blankets, etc. Your child must double-click the mouse on the correct areas to find the hidden objects. Color Stamps is a creativity toy. Your child can use thirty-six colorful stamps to create his own pictures. He can place the stamp on the screen by clicking the mouse or he can create hallucinogenic effects by dragging the stamp around the screen. Drag and See teaches children the mouse technique of dragging and dropping. He will drag and drop toys onto an X-ray machine to see what is inside. Some x-rays are realistic, such as the skeleton of a fish or the gears of a clock, but others are whimsical such as a real mouse inside a computer mouse. My Very First Software Three teaches children about the keyboard through Key Crazy, Juke Box Numbers and Key Sketch. In Key Crazy, your child will see images placed randomly on the screen and hear sounds by pressing keys on the keyboard. Unfortunately, the pictures do not seem to relate to the letters. For example, the program places a cow on the screen when your child presses the letter D. Juke Box Numbers teaches familiarity with the location of numbers on the keyboard. Your child will hear different songs by pressing the number keys. He can gain a little music appreciation by pushing the arrow button to hear the songs in traditional, country, jazz or rock musical styles. Each program has Word Fun. This multimedia glossary teaches children about one dozen computer terms through written, audio and animated definitions. Each word will be written and defined in text. The narrator will pronounce the word, spell it and then read the definition. A short animation will then demonstrate the technique or the purpose of the object. The program teaches computer skills to children in a very friendly environment. Cybee is a very enthusiastic coach who praises your child often as he plays. The positive feedback will encourage him to use the program more often. I do feel the programs are short on content. The program doesn't contain enough pictures (most activities only have ten screens) or randomize them for more interactivity. The glossary should have been larger. Key Crazy would be a better learning tool if the pictures generated had the same first letter as the key pressed. Pressing a number could show a picture with that number of objects. However, the program will get younger children enthusiastically involved with computers. The program is reasonably priced and includes a free mouse pad. Unfortunately, T/Maker only warranties the product against damaged media. Once you open the package at home, it is yours unless your vendor has liberal return policies. I like this package, but it could have been better if it had added more depth. It's a nice first program, but your child will quickly outgrow it. Ratings Graphics . . . . . . . . . 9.5 Sound . . . . . . . . . . . 9.0 Interface . . . . . . . . . 9.5 Play Value . . . . . . . . 7.5 Educational Value . . . 6.0 Bang for the Buck . . . 7.0 Average . . . . . . . . . . 8.08 Comic Creator available separately on CD-ROM for Windows and Macintosh for ages 8 and up approximately $30 published by Hearst New Media & Technology created by Spark Interactive 112 West San Francisco St. Santa Fe, NM 87501 Program Requirements IBM Macintosh OS: Windows 3.1, Windows 95 OS: System 7.0 CPU: 486DX/33 CPU: LC III HD Space: 10 MB HD Space: 10 MB Memory: 4 MB Memory: 8 MB Graphics: 640 by 480 with 256 colors Graphics: 256 colors, 13" monitor CD-ROM: Double-speed CD-ROM: Double- speed Audio: 8-bit Windows compatible sound card Other: printer, mouse Other: printer, mouse reviewed by Frank Sereno For the last sixty years or so, boys and girls of all ages have loved comic books. The flights of fantasy inspired by comic books have not only created endless hours of enjoyment, but they have also inspired children to take interests in science, technology and even writing. Comic Creator provides an ideal tool for youngsters to create beautifully illustrated comic books that they can share with others as files or by printing. You can build comic books of up to twenty-five pages. The procedure is very easy. Simply choose a background and then place characters and objects upon the screen by dragging and dropping. The program includes a wide variety of heroes, villains, backgrounds and accessory objects. Each character has dozens of poses from which to choose. You can add bubbles for thoughts, balloons for speech and boxes for a written narrative, then simply click and enter your text. You can import BMP and PIC images into the program if you wish. Images can be enlarged or shrunk with the Zoom button, but imported images may suffer from "jaggies" if enlarged too much. Each hero and villain has a name and biography. These can be used for inspiration and continuity or you can create your own histories for these characters. These characters are not famous but they are drawn and developed well. If the characters do not inspire you, you can click on the Idea Dice and the program will display a series of story lines. The interface is very simple, but reading the manual does reveal many shortcuts and tips that will make creating your comic much easier. It does include a help option that opens a dialog box containing a text explanation of each step. This text may be beyond the reading level of many second- graders (8-year-olds), so be prepared to assist children under ten years. It would have been a great addition for younger users if audible help had been available. Technical assistance is available by a toll-free call. As an added bonus, the program is supported by a site on the World Wide Web at http://comicnation.com/. Here you can get additional technical support, read comics written by other users and even download new poses for use in Comic Creator. The program's author, R. A. Montgomery, also posts comics that were made with the program. You can even enter your comics into a contest to win prizes. Comic Creator is a great tool for expanding your child's imagination. Anyone can create professional-looking comics with ease using this program. This is a great program for adults to use alone or with their children. Comic Creator can be fun for the entire family. Perhaps the only major drawback of this program is that it will use most of the perishables for your printer, so stock up on paper, ribbons, ink cartridges, etc. Then stand back and be amazed by your child's creativity. # # # Another person has joined the staff of The Kids' Computing Corner. I think you will enjoy his reviews and commentary. He believes in telling it "just like it is." Please welcome Mr. David H. Mann to The Kids' Computing Corner and to the Silicon Times Report. Hello. My name is David H. Mann. I am 39 years old, happily married for 22 years, and have three kids. I have been an electronic technician for 14 years and have repaired and upgraded computers for ten years. I own or have owned a TI-994a, Atari 400-800-800xl-65xe, Commodore 64, and an IBM 8088-286-386sx25- 486DX266. I own a monochrome, cga, ega, monochrome vga, vga, multi-sync, and multi-mode monitors. I also own the gamut of applications, games, and utilities for those systems. I have lots of experience in games and applications and I only hope I can express my experience in writing. I know what I like and dislike and I'm not afraid to say it. Yours truly, David H. Mann Torin's Passage Windows/ DOS CD-ROM MSRP $59.95 for ages 6 and up Sierra On Line 3380 146th Place SE. Suite 300 Bellevue WA. 98007 Program Requirements OS: Windows 3.1 CPU: 486SX/25 HD Space: 2 MB Memory: 8 MB Graphics: 640 x 480, 256 colors CD-ROM: Double-speed Audio: Windows-compatible sound card Other: mouse reviewed by David H. Mann Torin's Passage is a new interactive adventure game from designer Al Lowe (of Leisure Suit Larry fame) of Sierra On Line. But hold on all you depraved members of society, this one is for kids. That is not to say that adults will not enjoy the game too. The puzzles alone are enough to challenge most. The story starts with a wonderfully animated intro of a wizard entering the bed chamber of a sleeping King, Queen, and child. The wizard cast an evil spell that vanquishes the King and Queen, but alas the child is spared. Unknown to the wizard, the chambermaid has taken the child for a late feeding and flees when she learns of his evil plan. After the intro the story picks up on a pseudo medieval farm with Torin tending the fields. His parents are suddenly turned to stone and sucked into the earth. A witness to this event explains to Torin how to retrieve his parents. And so begins the adventure. The games consist of five distinct nested worlds (worlds within one another from surface to center). Each one has enough challenges, characters, and pitfalls so that even the most experienced gamer will not be bored. It has a "cockpit" interface that allows the user to recall text of conversations between characters, examine objects, and get on-line hints (no more shelling out extra cash for the hint book). The "cockpit" interface gives the user the feel that they are in total control of the game, while giving an excellent view of the action. It has "VCR" controls that let the user rewind, pause, or fast forward action. The game also has a "smart cursor." It lights up on objects you need to examine or collect, characters you need to talk to, as well as controlling the actions of Torin and other characters. One of those characters (Boggle, Torin's shape shifting cat) will become invaluable as the game progresses. The items collected, and actions taken lead to a "surprise" ending. Torin's Passage has beautifully animated characters and backgrounds that give the feel of other worlds. The digital music and speech (a sound card is a must) bring life to each situation and character. The "velocity controlled" action, lets each user play at their own pace. The save game function is a plus (Torin can die, but there is no gore, and you get to start again with no points lost). Touch everything, talk to everyone and collect all that lights up on the cursor. Gameplay is limited in that there is only one way to win, but with the puzzles, whimsical characters and silly situations you will have fun all the way to the end. # # # Press Release HEADBONE DELIVERS PROGRAMMING TO STRUCTURE THE WORLD WIDE WEB FOR KIDS- PARENTS-TEACHERS "Elroy's Netscapade" seen As 'Net Curriculum' SEATTLE, WA -- Headbone Interactive, publisher of original children's CD- ROMs, is extending its award-winning content to the World Wide Web. Coming this Spring, the company will pilot Internet programming for children, giving parents and teachers a framework to replace what is often aimless surfing around "the Net." A recent survey by FIND/SVP--recounted last week in Interactive Week Magazine- -found that 64 percent of Net surfers had visited fewer than 50 sites. Headbone intends to alter those numbers significantly, by producing fun and engaging "Net Curriculum" that gives parents and teachers directed activities for their kids to research in the classroom and at home. "According to the Department of Education, 50% of US schools have access to the Internet today--up from 35% in 1994. Add to that President Clinton's announcement that $2 billion would be invested in getting every classroom connected by the year 2000, and we think there is a definite opportunity for us to produce creative programming for the Internet," said Headbone President, Susan Lammers.. Beginning in May, "Elroy's Netscapade" will debut as the company's initial effort to provide a fun and directed vehicle for exploring sites on the Web. Designed as a thought-provoking treasure hunt --complete with prizes for individuals and classrooms--Headbone's Internet learning adventure will run between May 1-May 15. The program takes the form of a cartoon mystery in seven episodes, released over the period of a week. In every episode, players will be presented with a comic strip story segment which leads to an intriguing puzzle. Kids, parents and teachers will need to delve into the Web to solve the story-problem and ultimately help Elroy solve his mystery. Contest players can register at the Netscapade web site (http://techweb.cmp.com/elroy) until April 30. "Elroy's Netscapade" is based upon Headbone's animated character, Elroy, and his ever-present dog, Blue, The characters were popularized in the award winning CD-ROM released last year, Elroy Goes Bugzerk. The second episode in the Elroy Series, Elroy Hits the Pavement, will be released in April. "Elroy's Netscapade is a great way for families and classrooms to jump safely into the Internet and discover for themselves what an incredibly resource- rich place it is, said Barry Hoonan, fifth grade teacher at Emily Dickinson Elementary in Redmond, Washington. "The 'Net', the biggest library in the world, can be difficult to find your way around in because the hallways and bookshelves aren't organized for the daily browser. It's more maze than amazing. Headbone has created a unique introduction to using the Internet that places fun, exploration, research and discovery at the fingertips of kids." The prizes are nifty too: Co-sponsored by Home PC magazine, Excite!, Bill Nye the Science Guy, Micron Electronics, Intel, Compaq, Egghead Software, Farallon, The Edutainment Company, and Family Planet, the grand prize individual winner will get multimedia computer, $1,000 and an appearance in the next Elroy CD-ROM, and the grand prize class team will win a Micron laptop computer and Farallon "Netopia" ISDN router for the school (an expensive tool that provides the ultimate Internet connection). Hundreds of additional prizes will be given to individuals and schools based on their scores at the conclusion of "Elroy's Netscapade". Headbone Interactive was formed in 1993 with a goal of becoming the premier producer of original, energetic, off-beat programs for home consumers. In addition to the Elroy titles, the company has a line of CD-ROMs for the preschool set, entitled The Gigglebone Gang series (Alpha Bonk Farm, and Pantsylvania) The company intends to gain a share of the growing multimedia market through its compelling products and creative sales and marketing efforts, which includes an exclusive distribution partnership with Sega of America. For more information, call Headbone Interactive at 1-800-267-4709, or visit their Web Site: http://headbone.com # # # 3D Movie Maker Windows 95 CD-ROM approximately $35 for ages 8 and up Microsoft Corporation One Microsoft Way Redmond, WA 98502-6399 206-882-8080 Program Requirements OS: Windows 95 CPU: 486/50 HD Space: 12 MB Memory: 8 MB Graphics: 640 x 480, 256 colors, local bus or PCI bus video CD-ROM: Double-speed Audio: 16-bit sound card Other: mouse, microphone optional review by Frank Sereno Computer animation has fascinated people for many years. Recently Toy Story was the first feature-length computer animated movie, but computer shorts have been amazing people for years. Unfortunately, the capabilities of home computers were not adequate to the task of creating computer animations or the programs were so complex that only an expert could get good results. But that has changed with the advent of today's lightning-quick home PC's and the creation of Microsoft 3D Movie Maker. Your entire family will enjoy the fascinating experience of creating your own computer movies. 3D Movie Maker includes twelve three-dimensional sets that include numerous camera angles for added creative expression. You can choose from forty actors and there is a wide array of costumes and props. Each character has at least twenty motions and expressions. Over three hundred sound clips are available, but you can also record your own sound effects, dialog and music. You are in complete control of this creative environment. The program is hosted by McZee, a friendly dude who is constantly cracking jokes. McZee will lead you on a tour of 3D Movie Maker building and explain many features. He is available to help users in most sections of the program. The program includes extensive animated help sequences to explain the use of the editing tools and how to do different tasks. The tools are very powerful and complex, but an explanation is only a mouse click away. Another way to get help is to visit Melanie in the Projects Room. This young woman is an expert on movie-making. She will guide you step by step through the completion of six movies and the making of an animated logo. Her friendly and enthusiastic persona will enchant all and make the learning process much easier. The program has numerous useful features. The Ideas Room is the place to go when you need creative inspiration. Just click on the Splot Machine for a story idea. The Talent Book contains detailed information about the abilities and hopes of your cast. Unfortunately, our host McZee lost pages from the book. You can find the lost pages by exploring the building. If you find all the pages, you get an extra tool as a reward. You can view your movies in the Theater Screening Room. You can even share your movies with distant friends if they have 3D Movie Maker. The graphics in this program are amazing. The images are rendered and three dimensional. The animated sequences with McZee and Melanie are truly astounding, but even more remarkable is the fact that you can create sequences of equal quality. Building a movie is as simple as choosing a background, selecting a lead character and then dragging him about the scene. With the dozens of tools available, you can create unbelievable action sequences, character dialog, switch cameras like an expert director for maximum effect and more. With 3D Movie Maker's animated help and instruction, you'll be a master of these tools in very little time. This is an outstanding program. Children will expand their imaginations and creativity by making their own movies. It is a program that will grow with children because they will learn to use more tools and refine their movie- making techniques as they use it more. I believe most children will spend endless hours exploring and experimenting with this program. It's so cool that parents will enjoy it too! Microsoft 3D Movie Maker is fun for the entire family. Ratings Graphics . . . . . . . . . 10.0 Sound . . . . . . . . . . . 9.5 Interface . . . . . . . . . 9.5 Play Value . . . . . . . . 9.5 Educational Value . . . 9.0 Bang for the Buck . . . 9.5 Average . . . . . . . . . . 9.5 Portable Computers Section Marty Mankins, Editor Micrografx Announces QuickSilver Internet Plug-In for ABC Graphics Suite Free Plug-In Available at micrografx.com Delivers Blazing Interactive Graphics Tucson, Arizona, (March 18, 1996) - Micrografx, Inc. (NASDAQ: MGXI), a leading graphics software publisher, today announced QuickSilver, a software plug-in for Netscape Navigator 2.0 that extends the Micrografx ABC Graphics Suite, allowing users to place, view and interact with object graphics inside Web pages. QuickSilver's new object graphics technology makes creating and viewing dynamic Internet graphics easier and faster. QuickSilver is the first component of the Micrografx Internet strategy to enable greater freedom to communicate ideas through the use of graphics on the Internet/IntraNet. In June, the complete QuickSilver Pack will ship with full support for both Netscape 2.0 and Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0. The QuickSilver beta is currently available for download at http://www.micrografx.com/quicksilver.html Unveiled at PC Forum, QuickSilver is being showcased on ForumWeb, the conference's Intranet, as an interactive visual guide to the exhibits. "With QuickSilver, Micrografx has developed something that has been missing from the Internet far too long -- object graphics," said Jerry Michalski, managing editor of the newsletter Release 1.0 and Forum co-host. "QuickSilver's object graphics will transform the way Internet and Intranet users interact with dynamic information. The ForumWeb, a dynamic conference map created with QuickSilver, enables conference attendees to preview exhibits and sessions, follow web links to additional information, and intelligently plan their time at the conference. QuickSilver enables attendees to interact with information in ways not previously possible." Solving Internet Issues Today Used in conjunction with Micrografx ABC Graphics Suite, QuickSilver makes it easy to create and interact with compelling object graphics for the Internet while minimizing the use of HTML editing. Object graphics may be associated with a wide range of properties that enable actions, including linking directly to URLs. When creating and editing Web pages, customers can easily move object graphics without losing associated properties, thereby avoiding intensive and time-consuming graphics editing, including re-drawing of images and re-coding of HTML paths or hot-links. Object graphics may be re-used, enabling Internet users to leverage their work and to build graphic libraries of images. "Micrografx is embracing and extending the Internet by empowering people to plug-in their imaginations," said J. Paul Grayson, chairman and CEO of Micrografx. "We're focused on solving customer needs by offering real-world solutions based on cutting-edge technology. With our tradition of award- winning graphics technology innovation, Micrografx is uniquely positioned to help people express their ideas visually on the Internet." Micrografx research reveals three key needs for customers utilizing graphics on the Internet/IntraNet: increased speed and editability; ability to use pre- defined web page designs to reduce lengthy creation time; and ability to use existing software applications to reduce training time. QuickSilver is the first implementation of Micrografx's Internet strategy, designed specifically to meet customer needs. Advancing Visual Communication By adding object technology to the extensive graphics offerings currently available in the ABC Graphics Suite, Micrografx has provided an easy way to create fast Web graphics. QuickSilver supports file formats including DSF, DS4 and DRW, allowing customers to leverage existing content. Customers can extend the use of QuickSilver to a wide range of more than 55 popular graphic formats supported by ABC Media Manager in the Micrografx ABC Graphics Suite. ABC Graphics Suite is an integrated offering of award-winning diagramming, flowcharting, clipart management, painting, image editing, 3D capabilities and drawing tools designed for Microsoft Windows 95 and Windows NT. "While companies are working with static graphics today, it is our belief that the use of active or interactive graphics is a logical choice for customers in the future," said Darryl Worsham, senior product manager for Micrografx. "Corporations using Intranets will find the added functionality of QuickSilver coupled with the breadth of ABC Graphics Suite to offer unmatched versatility and ease-of-use. Microsoft Windows 95, Windows NT, and Office 95 users looking for a graphics package that's tightly integrated with their other software and meets a variety of graphics needs -- including Internet-ready graphics -- will find the benefits and performance of ABC Graphics Suite and QuickSilver compelling." To help people using QuickSilver, Micrografx has provided HTML documents available for downloading at http://www.micrografx.com, including "What is QuickSilver," "Overview of Creating a Web Page," and "Graphics for the Internet." In addition to QuickSilver and HTML documentation, Micrografx has also made samples of object graphics available for free downloading to give Internet/IntraNet users a real-world look at QuickSilver benefits. MICROGRAFX LAUNCHES COOPERATIVE RETAIL SALES PROMOTIONS WITH MICROSOFT "Solid Ties Between Customers and Windows 95-based Products Create Strong Retail Marketing Relationship" Richardson, Texas (March 12, 1996) Micrografx, Inc. (NASDAQ: MGXI) today announced two aggressive retail programs created in conjunction with Microsoftr Corp. to provide compelling Windowsr 95 operating system product offerings of business and creativity software. Effective immediately, these promotions provide outstanding value for people buying Micrografx ABC Graphics SuiteT with Microsoft Office 95 upgrades, or Micrografx Windows Drawr with any Microsoft Value Pack. The first promotion offers customers $100 in combined mail-in rebates when purchasing a Microsoft Office for Windows 95 upgrade and Micrografx ABC Graphics Suite together. This promotion is valid through August 31, 1996. The second promotion gives customers a free Micrografx Windows Draw via a $40 mail-in rebate with the purchase of any Microsoft Value Pack at selected retail locations, valid through July 1, 1996. Both promotions are designed to provide an appealing value for purchasers of Micrografx and Microsoft Windows 95-based products. Retailers participating in the cooperative promotions include Best Buy, Computer City, CompUSA, Egghead, Media Play, MicroCenter, Office Depot, OfficeMax and many others. Reseller participation in the cooperative promotions range from complete floor stack displays with ABC Graphics Suite and Microsoft Office 95 combination packs at Computer City, to a full-page OfficeMax ad in USA Today promoting the Windows Draw and Microsoft Value Pack promotion. "The combination of Microsoft Office and Micrografx's ABC Graphics Suite, especially with a $100 rebate, is an excellent value for customers," said Jon DeVaan, Vice President, Microsoft Office Product Unit. "Micrografx's participation in the Office Compatible program enables them to provide customers with a consistent Office user interface, integrated Office Binder support, and an overall product that works seamlessly with Microsoft Office - - this combination is advantageous to customers." "By working together, Microsoft and Micrografx have been able to deliver even more value to our retail customers," said Jim Hamilton, VP and General Merchandising Manager with Computer City. "Their technology is tightly integrated and they share a common group of customers. It just makes sense to tie their quality products together and make the purchasing decision even easier for the customer." Micrografx Titles - A Perfect Fit with Office 95 and New Microsoft Value Packs The ABC Graphics Suite is an integrated offering of award-winning diagramming, flowcharting, clipart management, painting, image editing, 3D capabilities and drawing tools, all with an interface designed for Microsoft Office 95. Micrografx ABC Graphics Suite provides unlimited creative capabilities to PC users worldwide, by employing a "use what you know" SM metaphor that helps Microsoft Office 95 users easily access Micrografx's powerful tools to create, enhance and place graphics in a familiar, productive setting. With an Office 95-based interface, multithreading technology, Binder support and OLE 2.0 automation, ABC Graphics Suite is tightly integrated with Office 95. Windows Draw 4.0 is the fun, fast and friendly graphics software for home PCs running Microsoft Windows 95. Offering powerful graphics capabilities that are easy to use for non-artists, Windows Draw features pre-designed templates and is packed with content, including clipart, fonts and photos. "We continue to work with Microsoft to produce integrated products and compelling marketing programs," said John Dearborn, vice president and general manager of Micrografx's US Subsidiary. "Together, Micrografx and Microsoft have designed win-win promotions with our Windows 95-based titles for resellers and customers alike. We anticipate that the market will see the clear value in these aggressive promotions." Estimated retail prices of the products featured in the cooperative promotions are: Microsoft Office 95 Standard CD-ROM upgrade - $299.00; Microsoft Office 95 Professional CD-ROM upgrade - $399.00; Microsoft Word/Publisher Value Pack - $129.00 and Home and Small Business Value Pack - $249.00 with $40 mail-in rebate from Microsoft. Micrografx ABC Graphics Suite Upgrade - $149.95; Windows Draw - $39.95 (special reduced price for promotion at select accounts). Promotion offers are valid only in the U.S. and Canada. Micrografx is the global leader in developing and marketing graphics software which enhances visual communication and empowers creative expression. Founded in 1982, Micrografx has become a leading software publisher by responding quickly to customer and worldwide market needs. The company's U.S. operations are based in Richardson, Texas with a development office located in San Francisco. International subsidiaries are located in Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Australia and Japan. # # # Microsoft and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. All other products mentioned are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies. Atari Interactive - software/Jaguar/Computer Section Dana Jacobson, Editor >From the Atari Editor's Desk "Saying it like it is!" Spring is here, but from my vantage point, it hasn't sprung yet! Cold and rainy weather in the northeast; and parts of the country that should be sunny and warm have just received some snow (better them than us!). The weather is depressing; and that's no mood for an editor to be in while writing an editorial! Not much happening on the home front this week. So, what I thought I'd do is reminisce and see what was happening at this time last year. ACE '95, the Toronto Atari show was about to be held, with a wide range of exhibitors. It was a great show from all reports that I read. I wonder if there will be an ACE '96... Atari was distancing themselves from the computer market by selling off its parts inventory to Best Electronics. Seems like an old habit is hard to kick; Atari recently sold Best most of its hardware inventory some weeks back. This "sale" pretty much confirmed the fact that Atari is completely out of the computer business. Seemingly like the "different day, same old story...", there wasn't much computing news this time last year, either. We'll be taking a ride down memory lane from time to time, in this section and the Jaguar section, just to see what's happened. There should be a number of interesting tidbits to recall! Until next time... Jaguar Section Atari 4th Quarter Financial Report! VLM Revisited! Reviews on the Way! Trip Down Memory Lane... >From the Editor's Controller - Playin' it like it is! Braindead 13 was supposed to come out this week, but apparently it's delayed for another week or so. I guess these things just don't surprise the longtime Jaguar community any longer. It's been a quiet week here. The only exciting news was that I received a large bundle from Atari containing a number of recent Jaguar releases. They will be packaged and forwarded to anxious staff members this weekend and we hope to have reviews for them in a few weeks. We're also still waiting on a couple of reviews that seem to have vanished! So, theactivity in this forum should pick up shortly with some long awaited reviews. It's been a bad year so far for getting reviews in on time! As I did in the computing section, I thought that since it's pretty quiet for news this week, I'd take a look at what was happening this week a year ago and reprint some of the material from that week. I read it all over earlier this week, and was a little amazed. At this time last year, there were 21 games available for the Jaguar, including Cybermorph. The five "current" games for the Jaguar were Val D'Isere Skiing & Snowboarding, Cannon Fodder, Syndicate, Troy Aikman Football, and Theme Park. The JaguarCD hadn't been released yet. Acclaim was signed on as a developer. The Jaguar's price was lowered to under $160! And more. Let's take a look at yesteryear... >From STReport #1112: >From the Editor's Controller - Playin' it like it is! (reprint) You know, speculation can be entertaining, and devastating. We all know that the Jaguar's CD-player and a group of games will be coming out soon. Atari has been pretty open that there will be a CD pack-in, when the hardware arrives. What's been amazing is that there have been numerous rumors trying to figure out what game will come with the player. The comments, sometimes heated, have been bandied about for months! With the Jaguar, we got Cybermorph. Regardless of how you felt about that game (I think it's great!), the game was included in the price of the system. The same will hold true for the CD-player. So what if the game might be Blue Lightning or Dragon's Lair, or something else? These are good games, and good choices, for many. Users (and potential buyers) have stated pros and cons about these possible games being included in the deal. You can't please everybody, but like Cybermorph, you will please many. There's one potential CD game being considered as the pack-in, among the reported six to be available. That game is VidGrid. Many of you may not know what this game is, so let me summarize it for you. VidGrid is reminiscent of those "slider" puzzle games that we all have seen when we were kids. You know the ones I mean. These are the flat, square plastic toys that usually contained sliding tiles, usually fifteen (each one being numbered 1 through 15), with one empty space allowing the player the ability to slide each tile, one space at a time. The object of the game was to move the tiles around so that you ended up with the tiles in numerical order: 1 - 4 on the top row, 5 - 8 on the second row, 9 - 12 on the third row, and 13 - 15 on the bottom row. This took some time and strategy to achieve, and it was fun. Well, the Jaguar will take this game into the 90's. Not only will you have to move "tiles" around, but instead of numbers or letters, you'll have to form a picture. Add to that is the fact that each "tile" has music "attached" to it so that as the tiles are moved around, they'll also play back a tune according to the order of the tiles. Some tiles will be facing backwards, upside down, etc.; and the music will play accordingly. Who knows what pictures will appear once you have them in order, but that's unimportant at this point. The puzzle game sounds somewhat entertaining, but not something I'd think I'd want as a leading-edge Jaguar 64-bit CD game. What is important, and something that I think Atari needs to hear from all of us, is that there hasn't been a single message online that gives me the impression that anyone wants this game, regardless of the fact that it's a free pack-in! Sure, I don't get online on every service available to me; nor do I read every single message on those that I do. However, the messages that I have seen have ALL been negative toward this game being possibly considered as the pack- in. This is not some like it, some don't kind of thing. This is the kind of message that's saying: "I don't want it even if it's free!" Atari has to listen to this feedback. VidGrid sounds like a no-brainer non-seller type of game. It might be cute, and turn out to have some appeal for some once they play it. However, it doesn't have the kind of appeal that could convince me that this is the kind of game that I'd expect to see showing off the Jaguar's CD capabilities. I want the CD to show me the next generation of superb games. I want to see great graphics, great game-play, and mind-boggling fun! I don't want to see potential customers, or current users, see a CD game come out as the pack-in that's been generating negative feedback BEFORE it's even out! Can you imagine what kind of potential negativity will be generated once it's out? Atari: listen to the feedback on this potential disastrous decision. Bring the game out, but let the customers give their feedback at the cash register. To the users, I'd suggest that if you have bad vibes about this game and the decision to possibly include it as the pack-in - let Atari know about it. Drop them e-mail about it. If you want, send me your e- mail (at firstname.lastname@example.org) and I'll pass it along to the right people, for you. Make your voices heard. As we learned once VidGrid appeared with the JaguarCD, it wasn't "as bad" as we had heard. It was entertaining to a certain degree, but certainly not a game that I would have gone out and bought. My thoughts from a year ago still stand Atari should have packed in something a lot better! Regarding the Acclaim news... ATARI AND ACCLAIM JOIN FORCES IN MAJOR SOFTWARE DISTRIBUTION AGREEMENT Sunnyvale, CA, March 22, 1995 -- Atari Corporation (ASE:ATC) and Acclaim Entertainment, Inc. (NASDAQ:AKLM) are proud to announce an agreement which will bring the most popular contemporary video game titles to the 64-bit Atari Jaguar Multimedia system. The new alliance includes three stellar Acclaim titles that Atari will distribute: * NBA Jam - Tournament Edition - planned release: fourth quarter, 1995 * Frank Thomas 'Big Hurt' Baseball - planned release: fourth quarter, 1995. * The third title will be announced later this year for release in early 1996. Well, one out of three isn't too bad.... The price cut..... ATARI ANNOUNCES MASS MARKET PRICE FOR 64-BIT JAGUAR Sunnyvale. Calf. (March 21, 1995) -- Atari Corporation today announced that the 64-Bit Jaguar Interactive Multimedia system will have a suggested retail price of under $160. This Atari Jaguar system will be called the "64-Bit Power Kit" and includes the Jaguar console, a controller, power adapter and video cable (game cartridge not included). "64-Bit Power Kit" packages will be specially marked to highlight the "Mega-Power, Maximum Value" that the new price point represents. ...and now it's available in some stores for a sale price of $49.99, regularly priced at $99. I paid _what_ two years ago...? <g> Other newsbits from a year ago included an upcoming GEnie conference with Jeff Minter as the guest; the Tempest 2000 audio CD was getting rave reviews; Don Thomas' CATscan BBS was coming along nicely; and we were all looking forward to the JaguarCD. We'll have to reminisce a bit more .it's fun! Until next time... Industry News STR Game Console NewsFile - The Latest Gaming News! ATARI CORPORATION ANNOUNCES RESULTS FOR THE YEAR SUNNYVALE, Calif., March 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Atari Corporation (AMEX: ATC) reported today its results for the year and fourth quarter ended December 31, 1995. For the year ended 1995, NET SALES were $14.6 million compared to $38.7 million for the year ended 1994. The sales decrease was due to the poor sales of Jaguar, the Company's 64-bit multi-media interactive entertainment system, and related software. The Company reported a NET LOSS for 1995 of $49.6 million compared to NET INCOME for 1994 of $9.4 million. The loss for 1995 is principally attributable to substantial writedowns of inventory and software development costs as well as substantially lower sales for the Jaguar and related software. For the fourth quarter ended December 31, 1995, NET SALES were $2.8 million compared to $14.9 million for the fourth quarter of 1994. The Company reported a NET LOSS for the fourth quarter of 1995 of $27.7 million compared to NET INCOME of $17.6 million in the fourth quarter of 1994. The income in the fourth quarter of 1994 was primarily from licensing technology to Sega Enterprises. The loss for the 1995 quarter is attributable to substantial write downs of inventory and software development costs as well as substantially lower sales for the Jaguar and related software. PRELIMINARY FIRST QUARTER NEWS In the first quarter of 1996, the Company sold the remaining balance of its holdings in a publicly traded security, and realized a gain of $6.1 million. Sales of Jaguar in the first quarter of 1996 continue to be poor. The Company, in late 1995, reduced the price of the Jaguar to $99.95 and is presently test marketing different price points and software bundles for the Jaguar in an attempt to sell its inventory of such products. The Company has also substantially reduced its workforce and curtailed its sales and marketing and research and development activities. ATARI CORPORATION AND JTS CORPORATION TO MERGE On February 13, 1996, Atari Corporation and JTS Corporation announced plans to merge the two companies. JTS is a manufacturer of personal computer hard disk drives. "This merger puts us in a great position to capitalize an a very experienced management team and a rapidly growing disk drive market. JTS is using innovative technology, particularly in the 3" disk drive market, and we are excited about its prospects," said Jack Tramiel, Chairman of Atari. Under the terms of the agreement, the new corporation will operate under the name of JTS Corporation and the officers of JTS will become the officers of the merged company. The Atari entertainment business and the JTS disk drive business will operate as separate divisions of the new merged company. In connection with the merger Atari has extended a bridge loan to JTS in the amount of $25 million. In the event that the merger is not consummated, the bridge loan may be convertible into shares of JTS Series A Preferred Stock at the option of Atari or JTS and subject to certain conditions. As a result of the transaction, Atari stockholders will hold approximately 60% of the outstanding shares of the new company following the merger. The transaction is structured to qualify as a tax-free reorganization and will be accounted for as a purchase. The boards of directors of Atari and JTS have approved the definitive merger agreement. The merger is subject to certain shareholder and regulatory approvals and other conditions to closing. It is anticipated that the transaction will close toward the end of the second calendar quarter of 1996. Atari Corporation markets Jaguar, the only American made, advanced 64-bit entertainment system, and licenses and markets software in the multi- platform, multimedia market. Atari is located in Sunnyvale, California. The above statements regarding the disk drive industry and JTS' prospects are forward looking statements and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Among the factors that would cause actual results to differ materially are the following: business conditions and growth in the portable computer industry and in the general economy; competitive factors, including pricing pressures; availability of components from third parties; risks associated with manufacturing of products in India or other overseas jurisdictions and risks associated with JTS' ability to ramp its manufacturing operations, including cost and yield issues. ATARI CORPORATION Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations (in thousands, except per share) Quarter Ended Twelve Months Ended Dec. 31, 1995 Dec. 31, 1994 Dec. 31, 1995 Dec. 31, 1994 Net Sales $ 2,801 $ 14,921 $ 14,626 $ 38,748 Operating Income (loss) $(29,816) $(12,595) $(53,665) $(24,047) Exchange Gain (loss) 15 (5) 13 1,184 Other Income (Expense) Net 1,543 77 2,670 484 Settlement of Patent Litigation -- 29,812 -- 32,062 Interest Income Net Of Interest (Expense) 28 316 824 (289) Income (Loss) Before Extraordinary Credit $(28,230) $ 17,605 $(50,158) $ 9,394 Extraordinary Credit - gain on extinguishment of convertible subordinated debentures $ 535 $ -- $ 582 $ -- Net Income (loss) $(27,695) $ 17,605 $(49,576) $ 9,394 Earnings Per Common and Equivalent Share: Income (loss) before extraordinary credit $ (0.44) $ 0.30 $ (0.79) $ 0.16 Net Income (loss) $ (0.43) $ 0.30 $ (0.78) $ 0.16 Weighted Average number of shares used in computation 63,686 59,460 63,697 58,962 -0- 3/15/96 /CONTACT: Jack Tramiel of Atari Corporation, 408-328-0900/(ATC) Jaguar Cheats, & Hints STR InfoFile - Solving Those Riddles! >From the Internet, via CompuServe's Video Gaming Forums, comes this note regarding VLM codes: I stayed up till 4AM last night playing with the VLM effect editing mode. It is without a doubt staggeringly cool. In case you missed it, it's press 1+3+*+0. It seems that sometimes you have to do hold all those down and press A also. You will see the Spectrum/Trigger screen. Then press down a bunch of times, or press up then down 8 times to get to the edit screen. After that your mind will be blown. You will be able to edit the effect you are currently looking at. If you do the code while in VLM control mode (VLM logo right side up) you will edit effect 1-3 because 1-3 is the first part of the code. So put in a CD with fewer than 13 tracks and do the code while in CD control mode (i.e. the VLM logo is upside down) to edit any effect. When editing an effect it is easier to see what you are doing if you turn the digital video feedback off (set the window size to nothing) while you are editing the other parts of the effect. I have not been able to figure out how to change the effect types. I.e. if there are "(Empty)" slots in the effects list, how do you put other stuff in there? Or how do you change "Spectrum as intensities" to "draw a ring of pixels"? I wonder if you can change that or if it's all hard coded. I didn't try real hard so maybe there is some simple way to change it. Also, I have not been able to figure out how to change the waveforms to different types. I.e. a ramp is always a ramp and "User Control X" is always that. How do you change these to something else? Can you make an effect without user control into a controllable effect? Other than those limitations, you can change just about everything. E.g. let the Joypad control the digital video feedback rotation instead of changing the scale, edit the sine waves etc. Many of the default effects that I thought were not that great can be edited to be really nifty. It is amazing how many possibilities there are. Just playing around I made some really unique effects. Please, please Jeff, make a cartridge that will let me save my effects and accept external audio input! In the attach waveform screen, is the lower row of waveforms supposed to be the trigger values? I think so, but the user interface is weird to set those. When you edit an effect it stays that way until you change banks (not just change effects, it seems, so perhaps you can have up to 9 custom effects "saved") or turn off the Jag. Also I think I crashed my Jag a few times while editing. But a restart cleared it up, no biggie. If any of this info is wrong, please let me know, and if you figure something else out, please post it! Thank you thank you Jeff Minter for this truly awesome piece of software! It was worth it to buy a Jag CD just for VLM... but a VLM that you can edit is simply beyond cool.... Drew ONLINE WEEKLY STReport OnLine The wires are a hummin'! PEOPLE... ARE TALKING On CompuServe compiled by Joe Mirando 73637,2262 Hidi ho friends and neighbors. Another week has slipped by us just as all the others have. There is one small difference with this one though: It marks the beginning of spring. Yes, that marker of pagan festivals, the vernal equinox, has come again to turn those stick-figure trees into full, green, fragrant bastions of primal life. A bit too poetic perhaps? I think not. Just think for a moment about the life that trees make possible. Their leaves provide us with cooling shade, the birds who nest in them brighten our days with their colors and songs. Heck, even the squirrels who leap so easily from tree to tree and amuse us with their on-the-ground antics seem to have been put there for our enjoyment. Yes, spring is a wondrous time of the year. What does this have to do with the state of the Atari Community? Absolutely nothing... Enjoy it while you can. It's not often that I pass up a chance to take swipes at other platforms and extol the virtues of our favorite computer. Hey, maybe we've just discovered ANOTHER sign of spring. <grin> So, now that that's over, let's take a look at what other folks are talking about here on CompuServe. >From the Atari Computing forums On the subject of emulating the ST on either a PC or Mac, Bill Anderson posts: "Well, no matter how good the emulator, there are the inevitable incompatibilities. The best emulation I ever saw was "Spectre". Too bad Apple decided to get nasty and sue Gadgets out of business, which is why development ceased. It would have been nice to see it running System 7 on a TT or Falcon. Personally, I find it quite handy to have more than one system running. I figure I'll stay put until there is something I must do which can't be done with what I have. Hence, the reason for Magic Mac on a PowerBook...portability! I just found a pretty good deal on 8 megs. of ST RAM for the TT. There's a guy near Dallas who is modifying 2 meg boards to 8, at a more reasonable price than full retail. I think B&C is doing the same thing. Skipping back to my first paragraph, I'd probably still be using the old 8-bit, if I hadn't decided I needed to do CADD stuff! I wonder how well running OS2 or NT, etc. on a PPC works? Have you heard anything?" Okay, it's test time... how many of you can pick out the error? Sysop Keith Joins did. He tells Bill: "Apple never did anything to Dave or Gadgets. Dave sued a chip manufacturer due to their alleged failure to manufacture the chip according to specs and lost the suit. The resulting costs forced GBS into bankruptcy." Albert Dayes of Atari Explorer Online Magazine adds: "Apple was not involved in the lawsuit with Gadgets. It was a different company involved in that suit." Bill tells Keith and Albert: "OOOOPS! Thanks for setting me straight!... Sorry for the misunderstanding. Thanks for setting the record straight." Tom Benedik asks: "Why can I not find spectrum 512 anywhere so that I can download it." Sysop Bob Retelle tells Tom: "Spectrum-512 was a commercial product, and thus unless it has been specifically released into the public domain it's still covered under copyright laws. Unfortunately this same situation covers most Atari ST software. Unless you can find a copy still on the shelf at an Atari software dealer, it may be very difficult to obtain. Because of the legal status of most of these older programs, we can't have them available for downloading... sorry..!" Robert Aries asks: "I'm wondering if someone with knowledge of the inner workings of serial ports, communications protocols, and CIS could help me out... I'm using Flash (original vintage) and a 14.4 modem to access CIS. Everything works OK except for file transfers. Xmodem works OK but is slow. I used to use Quick- B with my older 2400 baud modem with no problem. Now, with baud rate at 19200, in Vidtex mode (which the Flash manual says I have to be in to do Quick-B), and my settings at 8-E-1, transfers with Q-B are iffy. When downloading, most of the time the process hangs after two or three blocks. I try again and sometimes it works, sometimes not. Sometimes it actually works the first time! With a successful download, the first 4 or 5 blocks have pauses between them, then the rest come in much faster. When I upload, the first 12 or so blocks go quickly; the rest of the file is uploaded kind of "jerkily", with some significant pauses between blocks. Uploading, even with the pauses, always works; downloading is what can fail. I do have the SERIALFIX program, but something tells me that it doesn't apply to my old 520st; in any case, it doesn't seem to affect things (I've had the same problems with the modem port set to "lock" or "unlock"). The modem was originally bought for my Mac, and does have hardware handshaking. I checked my homemade modem cable and the correct pins are connected. I've also tried other comm settings (8-N-1) with the same results. Any thoughts, ideas, tips, hints, etc, are most welcome! In general, I really prefer Flash I to Z-Term on my Mac; it's much faster when cruising the forums. I initially had a problem with Flash's input buffer overflowing but I wrote a small program to increase the buffer size to 32K and that solved it." Sysop Jim Ness tells Robert: "I think there is a successor to SERIALFIX which is better yet. Check library 2 here. A command like: BRO KEY:SERIAL should work." Meanwhile, Dan Parrish tells Robert: "A couple of thoughts. First with your modem being for a Mac you may be running into a problem as I have with my Supra modem being shared between my Falcon and my wife's Mac. Which is there is a seperate Mac modem correction protocol that is different from standard PC modem protocol. The Falcon (and I assume) your 520 use PC modem correction. Since the Supra is a Hayes compatible I can activate either by using the &F1 (Mac) or &F2 (PC) command in the initialization AT string. You may need to download the HSMODEM patch program that is located in the library (I believe that is where I got it). But mostly I would recommend upgrading to Flash II. Finally, the Modem setting I have to use for Compuserve is 8-N-1." Mark Kelling adds: "I had the same problems when I moved up to a 14.4 modem with my Mega 4 ST. I solved it by installing HSMODEM (available online here) and never had problems since. One benefit of HSMODEM over SERIALFIX is that it allows you to set the buffer size for the RS-232 line. I set mine to 32K download and 0.1K upload [they are two separate buffers]. (Probably overkill on the download side, but why not? ;-) What is actually happening with your ST is that at 14.4 baud the data flow floods the standard size RS-232 buffer before flow control can react and stop it. The jerkiness you notice on uploads is the ST missing the ACK signal from CIS so it waits and usually gets it the second time around. The download troubles are the buffer contents getting garbled by overwriting before the ST can retrieve the data successfully. So the CRC error checking thinks the data got scrambled on the phone line and keeps asking for a retransmission until CIS cancels. Faster ST's, like the Falcon or TT, have fewer problems like these since they process data faster and can fetch the buffer before it gets rewritten." Robert Grode asks another modem-related question: "I'm in desperate need of the setup strings for a USRobotics 14,400 Sportster Fax/Modem for an Atari STe and also the correct, or best, fixes for RTS/CTS for the serial port. Can anyone help me?" Sysop Bob Retelle tells Robert: "The serial fix program you should look for in our libraries is called HSMODEM. I've seldom had to change anything in my modem setups from the normal factory defaults, other than possibly turning on verbose result messages to make my communications program work properly. With CompuServe you can leave error correction and compression turned on (most modems default this way). If you've been having problems, the serial fix patch should help a great deal." Some of you may remember that our friend BJ Gleason, Portfolio programming genius, is now overseas teaching computer enlightenment to our men and women in the armed services. Every once in a while BJ sends out an "On the road to..." kind of letter to friends and associates via the Internet. Here's his latest installment: "Well, since people have been asking for it... I finally got signed off to Fly in Korea. Two check rides for the aero club, and I am on my own. However, once they signed me off, they closed the runway for 2 weeks.... are they trying to send me a message? Just spend a long weekend on the east coast of Korea, near MT Soraksan with my yodachingo (that's Korean for girlfriend)... Sometimes it is easy to forget that you are living in a country that is technically in a state of war, and that we are less than 10 miles from the front. We stayed in a very nice hotel on the beach, and I got into a lot of trouble. It seems as if everybody knows (except me) that you are not supposed to walk on the beaches after sunset. The beaches (clear, sandy white beaches, clear blue water) are blocked off with barb wire, and there are guard towers with spotlights. The hotels all have access to the beaches, but they have bright lights that shine on the beaches at night (to watch for invaders), there are also light ships of the coast that shine to the beaches for the same reasons. From the hotel room, the sight is quite pretty... you can see the beach and the waves all night long. It was so pretty, and such a nice windy night, I decided to take a walk on the beach about 8:30 or so... I walked out onto a beautifully raked lawn, with no footsteps but my own (They rake the beaches to check for infiltrators in the morning)... (I should point out I found out all this stuff later)... I walked down to the water, and then I headed to the rocks , and climb up them. I was standing there, the beach lights behind me, the light ships off in the distance, looking at the stars, listening to the waves crash on the rocks... when all of a sudden, I was hit by what felt like a million candle watt search light. I almost fell of the rocks.. needless to say, I was taken by surprise. I was blinded by the beam, and put my hands up to shade my eyes (which turned out to be the right move... my other instinct, to duck behind the rocks, would have been the WRONG move)... I stood there for a moment, waiting for something - guards, yelling, gunfire, etc... instead, the beam moved to my left. Then back on me, then to the left. It was waving me to the shore. I got off the rocks, and started walking back to the hotel, pausing for a minute to see if they wanted me to wait once I was back on the beach, but instead, the searchlight pointed to the door of the hotel that I had left a few minutes ago. As I walked to the door, the searchlight left me, scanned the beach again, and then went out. After my eyes adjusted, I went to the door... only to find it was locked. In the 15 minutes or so that I had been out, the hotel had closed, locked and chained the doors. The hotel is huge, easily 4 football fields in length, and I was in the middle. I walked to the side only to find... barbed wire blocking off the alley to the front of the hotel... you have to go through the hotel... so I walk to the other side of the hotel, and on my way, I saw a door to the kitchen for the Japanese steak house, and it was open, so I entered that way (A handy tip for invading hordes!), and went back to my room.... My classes start on Monday, three classes, with 15+ students in each. My bosses are very happy with me... so happy, that they want me to stay in Korea for another year. So it looks like I'm staying... Meanwhile, I find out that people who screw up are circulated from base to base, country to country to see if there is a place that they can fit in.... me... I'm doing such a good job, they keep me here. Oh well... I'm having a good time... I bought a car... a Daewoo Lamans for 500 dollars (used from a friend)... I had to take a Korean drivers exam which appeared to be the ability to identify a butterfly at 50 feet with one eye closed (honest)... the DMV was fairly efficient despite the crowd, and we were in and out in an hour. My photo is interesting... I sat in the chair, and I was too tall, so they had be kneel on the floor, and I was a bit too short... so they posed me in a very bizarre position on the chair to get me into frame... Oh.. Korean insurance? 384 dollars a year for the standard coverage... I probably told you that I moved into the new apartment upstairs after the guy above me moved out, and the landlord redid the place... It is much nicer, and I feel that I can easily do another 18 months in this place. The weather has been quite mild recently, and quite sunny most days... spring seems to finally be in the air... of course, next week spring ends, and summer begins... I was visited by some people from American University! Loren and Jesse and a few other students came to Seoul for a conference on AI... I took them about some, and we had a very good time... It was good to hear that things are going well in the states... Also, while it is still a while off, I am booked on a trip to the Antarctic in December... Down to Tierra del Fuego, then by boat to Antarctica... you'll hear more about that later... Looks like I will be back in the USA for a week or two in late July... I'll be in NJ, DC, and possibly a trip to Arizona (long, long story)... I'd like to see as many of you as possible, so let me know if you will be about... Well... enough for now... keep those cards and letters coming! Your man in Seoul, bj gleason" Well folks, that's it for now. Tune in again next time, same time, same station, and be ready to listen to what they are saying when... PEOPLE ARE TALKING EDITORIAL QUICKIES Self Serving, Squeaky Wheels don't ALWAYS get the GREASE. More OFTEN than not, they get the GATE! .A Word to the Wise. STReport International OnLine Magazine [S]ilicon [T]imes [R]eport http://WWW.STREPORT.COM AVAILABLE WORLDWIDE ON OVER 100,000 PRIVATE BBS SYSTEMS All Items quoted, in whole or in part, are done so under the provisions of The Fair Use Law of The Copyright Laws of the U.S.A. Views, Opinions and Editorial Articles presented herein are not necessarily those of the editors/staff of STReport International OnLine Magazine. Permission to reprint articles is hereby granted, unless otherwise noted. Reprints must, without exception, include the name of the publication, date, issue number and the author's name. STR, CPU, STReport and/or portions therein may not be edited, used, duplicated or transmitted in any way without prior written permission. STR, CPU, STReport, at the time of publication, is believed reasonably accurate. STR, CPU, STReport, are trademarks of STReport and STR Publishing Inc. STR, CPU, STReport, its staff and contributors are not and cannot be held responsible in any way for the use or misuse of information contained herein or the results obtained therefrom. STR OnLine! "YOUR INDEPENDENT NEWS SOURCE" March 22, 1996 Since 1987 Copyrightc1996 All Rights Reserved Issue No. 1212
- Next message by date: Bruce D. Nelson: "ST Report: 29-Mar-96 #1213"
- Previous message by date: Bruce D. Nelson: "ST Report 15-Mar-96 #1211"
----------------------------------------- Return to message index