ST Report: 21-Feb-97 #1308

From: Bruce D. Nelson (aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 02/23/97-09:29:46 PM Z

From: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson)
Subject: ST Report: 21-Feb-97 #1308
Date: Sun Feb 23 21:29:46 1997

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 February 21, 1997                                                No.1308

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>From the Editor's Desk...

     We are moving toward Spring already.  It about 84 degrees outside.
The flowers are all in bloom and the grass is growing nicely.  The pollen
is killing me but it's worth it.  Last night I enjoyed one of the rare
treats one can find here in the south.  It is full moon time or darn near
it.  At about midnight, I walked outside with Dujo my poodle and drank in
the view of patio and pool area.  It was indeed sight to behold, remember
and treasure for a lifetime.  The bright silvery light of the moon
shimmering across the light breeze swept surface of the swimming pool was
gorgeous.  That. topped off by the shadows cast by the palm trees and other
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     Office 97 is out there and it's a dilly.  This is the productivity
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                          STReport Headline News

                  Weekly Happenings in the Computer World

                       Compiled by: Dana P. Jacobson

                      U.S. Robotics Sued by Motorola

A complaint filed against U.S. Robotics Corp. alleges the firm infringed on
a number of Motorola Inc.'s  patents for high-speed modem technology.
Motorola contends some of the patents may apply to  next-generation
56-kilobit modem technology.   The Reuter News Service quotes officials at
U.S. Robotics  as saying the firm is planning to ship modems in the next
few days that allow users to download information  from the Internet at a
rate of 56 kilobits per second over ordinary, analog telephone lines.

Meanwhile, Motorola officials say the lawsuit comes after several years of
negotiations.  Says Vice President  Randy Battat, vice president of
Motorola's information systems group, "Motorola actively invests in new
technology for worldwide standards and is committed to making that
technology available on a fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory basis. At
the same time, the company will vigorously defend its intellectual property
and its right to fair compensation for the use of that property."

                      U.S. Robotics to Fight Motorola

"A vigorous defense" is being promised by U.S. Robotics Corp. in a patent
infringement lawsuit filed this  week by Motorola Inc. over high-speed
modem technology.  As reported yesterday (GO OLT-179),  Motorola contends
some of the patents may apply to next-generation 56-kilobit modem
technology.  From its  Skokie, Illinois, headquarters, the Reuter News
Service quotes a U.S. Robotics statement as saying the  company "believes
it has meritorious defenses to Motorola's claims and intends to mount a
vigorous defense of the lawsuit."

Reuters says the patents at issue cover technologies essential to the
international standard for current modem  technology, adding U.S. Robotics
has said it planned to ship the new 56-kilobit modems to retailers within
days.  Meanwhile, Motorola says it has settled similar litigation with
Rockwell International Corp. and said it  formed an alliance with Rockwell
Semiconductor Systems to develop a 56-kilobit modem using Rockwell's
technology Says the U.S. Robotics statement, "It is regrettable and
unnecessary that Motorola has chosen to  resort to the courts rather than
to act in accordance with its often professed commitment to making its
technology adapted for use in communications standards available on a
'fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory basis..'"

                      Industry Boos Encryption Policy

A failure is what various trade groups are labelling the Clinton
Administration's new high-tech export policy, which relaxed rules on
computer encoding technology a bit.  The new policy "does not adequately
address  the needs of either the American business community or the general
public," the 13 groups said in a letter to  Clinton dated Feb. 11 and
released yesterday.  Writing for the Reuter News Service, reporter Aaron
Pressman says the groups signing the letter included the U.S. Chamber of
Commerce, National Association of Manufacturers and National Retail
Federation, along with a host of high-tech industry groups such as the
Business Software Alliance, the Information Technology Association of
America, the Center for Democracy and Technology, and the Association of
Research Libraries.

Nonetheless, the current policy will be maintained, says White House
spokeswoman Heidi Kukis, who told Pressman, "The administration is moving
ahead with our encryption export liberalization policy." Kukis said  the
policy balances diverse interests by "allowing us to develop exports while
protecting our national  security."  As reported, under the current policy,
U.S. companies may not export products containing strong  encryption, used
to protect everything from a business' electronic mail to a consumer's
credit card number  sent over the Internet, unless the products also allow
the government to crack the code by recovering the  software keys. Firms
can get a license to export medium-strength encryption lacking so-called
key recovery features if they agree to incorporate key recovery in future
products within two years.

To date, the U.S. Commerce Department has issued threelicenses under the
two-year provision -- Digital Equipment Corp., Trusted Information Systems
Inc. and Cylink Corp. all promise to offer key recovery products by 1999 --
and IBM and Hewlett Packard Co. say they also are seeking licenses.
However, notes  Pressman, companies and privacy advocates rejected the
administration's key recovery-based approach. In  their letter to Clinton,
the groups said the policy "fails to accommodate the competitiveness
concerns of  sellers of encryption products, the security concerns of the
buyers of such products, or important privacy rights."

The letter adds, "We believe a fundamental rethinking of this policy is
necessary. We remain interested in  working with you to achieve a
constructive solution to this very difficult problem."  The fight appears
to be  moving to Congress. As reported, several congressional proposals are
being considered that would  dramatically relax the export restrictions
without requiring key recovery. However, the White House vows to oppose
allowing unfettered strong encryption programs out of the country where the
Clinton Administration says it fears they could be used by terrorists and
other international criminals.

                    3 Apple Execs Cut in Reorganization

Because their jobs have been eliminated in the company's latest
reorganization, three top executives are leaving Apple Computer Inc.
Reporting from Apple's Cupertino, California, headquarters, The Associated
Press says the departing execs are:

z    Satjiv Chahil, senior vice president of corporate worldwide marketing.
z    Fred Forsyth, senior vice president in charge of the Power Macintosh
        product group.
z    John Floisand, senior vice president of worldwide sales.

This comes a week after Apple vice president Heidi Roizen, in charge of
developer relations, and  Christopher Escher of corporate communications,
announced they are leaving as well.  Apple told AP the  latest departures
are a result of the company's new, centralized organization.    As noted,
the computer  maker has said it will cut $400 million in annual costs and
perhaps discontinue, spin off or sell less-profitable  product lines to
regain profitability on lower revenues. Apple has said that layoffs will be
part of its  reorganization -- its second within a year -- but has not yet
announced how many jobs will be cut. Industry  analysts say estimates could
run as high as 3,000 employees, about a fifth of Apple's work force.

                     Massey Leaves CompuServe CEO Post

To pursue other interests, Robert Massey is stepping down as president/CEO
of CompuServe, a post he has held since June 1995.  "Our goal remains a
speedy and sustained turnaround at CompuServe and under Bob's leadership,
the company has made progress in that direction," says a statement from
Chairman Frank L. Salizzoni, who assumes Massey's duties on an interim
basis until a successor is chosen. Salizzoni also is president/CEO of tax
preparation firm H&R Block Inc., which owns about 80percent of CompuServe.

The Reuter News Service quotes Salizzoni as saying, "We respect Bob's
desire to pursue other interests and thank him for his years of service to
CompuServe," and adding the board of directors will work quickly to find a
new chief executive.  Massey, 50, who joined CompuServe in 1976. Prior to
being named president/CEO, he served as the company's executive vice
president of the Network Services division.

                     Matsushita Offers Digital Camera

A super-thin digital still camera that makers say can be easily connected
to television screens to view the pictures has been unveiled in Tokyo by
Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. It is 21 mm thick and weighs 140 grams,
Matsushita adds.  According to the Reuter News Service, the camera's
pictures can be viewed on a personal computer as well as on a TV screen,
when connected to the camera via the supplied cable.  Matsushita -- whose
products are sold under the "National," "Panasonics," and "Technics" brand
names -- will begin sales in Japan in March 20, with monthly production
projected at 10,000 units. Shipments to the U.S. market will begin in

                     Apple Unveils New Digital Camera

Apple Computer, Inc. today announced the QuickTake 200, a new digital color
camera targeted at Mac OS users in the education, small office/home office
and corporate markets.  Apple notes that the QuickTake 200 gives customers
several options for presenting their images on computers and/or
televisions, including presentations, slide shows, video recording and
real-time Internet videoconferencing.  The QuickTake 200 offers a 1.8-inch
LCD viewfinder, which can also be used to display stored images. Images are
recorded on a removable storage card. The included 2MB card can store 30
standard-quality or 20 high-quality color images.

The camera is bundled with Adobe PhotoDeluxe, Adobe PageMill and
PictureWorks NetCard software, which collectively allow the user to edit,
manipulate, and electronically share images, as well as create Web pages.
The package also includes allcables required for full operation.  "For
customers who want to express themselves visually, the Apple QuickTake 200
is a tremendous tool; it gives them the flexibility to easily add the
impact of images on-screen, in print media or on the Internet." says Maury
Austin, vice president and general manager of Apple Computer's imaging
division.  The QuickTake 200 will sell for $600. The camera and additional
accessories are expected to become available in North America starting
March 1, and in Japan, Europe and South America in April.

                      Hyundai Unit Makes NT Computers

A line of high-end computer servers based on Microsoft Corp.'s  Windows NT
software standard will be  made by Axil Computer Inc., the American
computer unit of Korean-based Hyundai Corp.  The Reuter News Service,
reporting from Santa Clara, California, notes that until now, Axil has made
computers based on the Unix software standard, adding, "By making machines
based on Windows NT, Axil will chase after a much more rapidly growing

Axil President/CEO Charles Wilson told the wire service, "We've spent a
considerable amount of time listening to IT professionals and anticipating
market directions."  Reuters notes Axil servers have been based on
microprocessors and software from Sun Microsystems Inc., which specializes
in mid-range Unix computer systems, but now is developing machines that use
Intel Corp.'s Pentium Pro microprocessors and Windows NT software.  Axil
officials told Reuters the firm will develop servers that use eight Pentium
Pro processors simultaneously and target customers who want to run massive
databases or set up electronic commerce operations on the Internet.

                      Practical Offers Modem Upgrades

Practical Peripherals today announced that owners of its 33.6K bps and
28.8K bps modems can upgrade to a 56K bps model at a discounted price of
$89. Customers with a 14.4K bps or slower modem can upgrade to a 56K bps
unit for $99.  The upgrade program includes external, internal and PCMCIA
modems. A $15 shipping and handling fee will be charged for all upgrades,
and upgrades must be redeemed by June 30, 1997, says the Atlanta-based

A statement issued by Practical Peripherals notes that the company will
also offer customers the option to  increase their modem's functionality by
adding voice capabilities for a "nominal additional cost."  "We're
providing our custmers a low cost Practical way to reach the highest speed
available through analog modems and to add voice or full-duplex
speakerphone capabilities to their modem," says Ash Dittakavi, Practical
Peripherals' director. "With this upgrade program, we're making it easy for
all Practical Peripherals customers to get up to 56K speed with Practical,
including the option to upgrade to our award-winning speakerphone modem."
Practical Peripherals says it will begin shipping its 56K products in early

                      Apple Pro Power Macs Make Debut

Apple Computer Inc. has introduced a new series of Power Macintosh
computers for business, professional publishing and Internet/media
authoring applications.  The new line includes a high-performance Power
Macintosh running at 233MHz, as well as 200MHz systems at prices ranging
from approximately $1,700 for  a general-productivity model to
approximately $4,700 for a top-of-the-line multiprocessor system for
professional graphics.  The high-end systems feature an innovative tower
industrial design that makes it easier to add new components.

Apple says all of the new systems are designed to run future versions of
the Mac OS as well as Apple's next-  generation Macintosh system software
code named Rhapsody. In addition, most of the new computers are  designed
with the processor on a removable card that can be replaced with a faster
processor card when Apple or a third-party manufacturer makes one
available.  "These are faster, well-designed, high-quality systems, priced
very aggressively," says Guerrino DeLuca, Apple's executive vice president
marketing. "They also feature the built-in technology that makes it easy
for our customers to get high-quality results fast -- especially in the
areas of graphics, multimedia and Internet communications."

                       Be Makes Pact With Motorola

Be Inc. -- the Menlo Park, California, firm that gained national attention
late last year when it was thought Apple Computer Inc. would buy into its
new operating system -- is set to sign a pact with Motorola Inc.  The New
York Times reports today Be will announce its system will be included in
Motorola's  Macintosh compatible computers. Interviewed by the paper,
Jean-Louis Gassee, the former Apple executive who now heads Be, says Be
Inc. is close to a similar pact with IBM.  The Reuter News Service notes Be
already has announced deals with other Macintosh clone makers. While the
firm failed to sell its system to Apple, it "believes pacts with Motorola
and IBM are equal or better than one with Apple because IBM and Motorola
are Apple's partners in developing the Macintosh's Power PC chips," Reuters

                       Apple Makes Deal With Iomega

Apple Computer Inc.'s new Power Macintosh 8600/200 will be shipped with an
internal 100MB Zip drive as a standard feature beginning next month, Zip
drive maker Iomega Corp. says.  Reporting from Iomega's Roy, Utah,
headquarters, the Reuter News Service quotes Iomega officials as saying
Apple also expects to ship its Macintosh Performa 6400 computer with the
internal Zip drive as a built-in feature later this month. It will be
available at retailers such as Circuit City Stores Inc. for a limited time,
the wire service adds.  Iomega says its 100MB Zip drive and disks provide
70 times the capacity of traditional floppy disks, giving users unlimited
capacity, increased flexibility and a built-in back-up system.

                      NewCom Debuts 16X CD-ROM Drive

NewCom Inc. has unveiled a 16X CD-ROM drive it describes as the fastest
model available in the consumer  marketplace.  At an average access rate of
100 ms and a data-transfer rate of 2.4K bps, users can retrieve  data from
educational and entertainment CD-ROMs at unprecedented speeds, notes a
statement issued by the Westlake Village, California, company.
"Installation is quick and easy, and the drive comes complete with a  CD
audio cable and driver," adds the statement. NewCom's drive provides single
and multisession support  and is photo CD, Karaoke CD, VCD, CDI and MPEG

The 16X CD-ROM drive will be packaged in a 16X Multimedia Kit and the 16X
Audiophile Multimedia Kit. The Audiophile Kit will combine the drive with
NewCom's high-fidelity plug- and-play sound card, an array of Internet and
educational software and multimedia speakers. NewCom's 16X CD-ROM drive and
16X Audiophile Multimedia Kit carry suggested retail prices of $179.95 and
$349, respectively.

                       Redialer Battles Busy Signals

PC users tired of encountering busy signals on lines operated by some
online services and ISPs, can take  advantage of PowerDialer Rev 7.0, a new
high-speed dialing peripheral.  The device's manufacturer, Technology Arts
Inc., describes the unit as the world's fastest way to automatically redial
busy numbers. The Watertown, Massachusetts, firm says the $249 PowerDialer
repeatedly dials busy telephone numbers as quickly as the telephone company
can process the calls -- as fast as twenty-five times per minute. When busy
signals or "all circuits are busy" recordings are encountered, PowerDialer
immediately hangs up and tries again.  When PowerDialer encounters either a
ringback or speech, meaning the call has gone through, an alarm sounds to
signal a successfully connected call.  David J. Hoch, Technology Arts'
president, says PowerDialer was also designed to redial other telephone
numbers that seem to be constantly busy, such as ticket ordering, radio
contest and golf tee-off lines.

                    Yahoo Founders Give $2 Million Gift

Becoming the youngest philanthropists in Stanford University history, the
founders of Yahoo, a popular  Internet search engine, have given the
institution a $2 million gift.  Reporting from Palo Alto, California,
United Press International quotes a Stanford spokeswoman as saying Jerry
Yang, 28, and David Filo, 30, will endow a new chair in the school of
engineering.  The pair started Yahoo as a pet project while they were
working on their engineering doctoral degrees at Stanford. It caught on, of
course, and the two had one of  Nasdaq's most successful initial public
stock offerings last April. These days, Yahoo's site on the World Wide Web
receives more than 20 million hits daily.  UPI notes Yang and Filo did not
finish their degrees,  but say they felt obligated to give something back.

                     New Study Finds Rapid New Growth

IntelliQuest Information Group Inc. says its latest survey shows an
Internet/online population of  approximately 47 million adults (age 16 and
above) in the U.S. in the fourt quarter of 1996. The statistic  represents
a 34 percent growth in the online population from the first quarter of
1996, when the  Internet/online population was measured at 35 million.  But
the Austin, Texas, market research firm warns that despite the dramatic
population growth in 1996, relatively few Netizens are "heavy" users, with
only 4.25 million people using the Internet and online services 20 hours or
more per week.

Other study findings:

z    22.3 million users primarily access at home, versus 13.3 million
        people who access from work and 6.8 million who access from school.
z    E-commerce is growing quickly with 15 percent users saying they
        purchased a product or information online in the last month.
z    Of all age segments, the 25 to 34 year old group has grown the
        quickest and now represents 30 percent of the online population.
z    11.7 million people plan to begin using the Internet or an online
        service in 1997.
z    The online gender gap is shrinking; females now comprise 45 percent of
        the online population.
z    User satisfaction remained stable with 43 percent of users rating
        their overall satisfaction with the online world as "very good" or
z    Sending/Receiving e-mail, getting information about hobbies and
        getting information about products and services are the top activities of
        online users.

                      Standalone Programs Fading Away

The standalone personal productivity market's last glimmer of life is being
snuffed by office suites, reports International Data Corp.  The Framingham,
Massachusetts, market research firm notes that only 14 percent of total
word processor shipments and six percent of spreadsheets were sold
standalone in 1996.  In 1996, 32-bit office suites made an immediate impact
on the personal productivity market, says IDC. Right out of the starting
box end-users embraced Windows 95, almost exclusively. Corporations,
however, were a little less enthusiastic about their migration.

As a result of slow enterprise acceptance, 16-bit versions of office suites
remained dominant in early 1996, says IDC. But all that changed in the
second half of the year as 32- bit applications represented 70 percent of
shipments in the final quarter.  Despite a mature market, worldwide
Windows-based office suite shipments grew 99.3 percent (including product
bundling deals) to reach revenues of $3.8 billion, notes IDC.  Microsoft's
Office 95 was the main force driving the market grabbing an overwhelming 89
percent market share.

"Microsoft is putting more time, energy and money into Office 97 than any
other major product release," says Mary Loffredo Wardley, manager of IDC's
consumer and productivity applications program. "However, Internet
technologies and open environments will offer a compelling choice to
corporations beginning in late 1997."

Other IDC predictions:

z    Windows 95-based productivity applications will continue to migrate
z    32-bit office suites will make up 80 percent of total Windows-based
        office suites in 1997.
z    Large OEM agreements will greatly inflate total shipments.
z    Corel Office for Java will not make a significant impact in '97

IDC's Web site ( contains additional company
information and recent news  releases. The site also offers full-text
searching of recent IDC research.

                      Gates Says 'Hal' May Be Reality

Computers like "Hal" in the movie "2001: A Space Odyssey" -- that is,
systems that can talk, see and listen  -- could be developed by the year
2011, says Microsoft Corp. chief Bill Gates.  Addressing the annual
meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in
Seattle, Gates says faster, more  powerful microchips, combined with
breakthroughs in software, will allow personal computers to recognize and
converse with people.  Covering the event, science reporter Michael Smith
of United Press International  quotes Gates as saing, "When people look
back on the computers of today, they'll say: what did they do?  They
couldn't see, they couldn't listen, they couldn't speak."

Gates also predicted the popularity of the Internet's World Wide Web also
will continue to grow, and, says Smith, more powerful computers will let
Web sites customize their information to suit each visitor.  As a test,
said Gates, "We want to build a Web site where you would go to decide what
you want to do for a  weekend ... so it'll know where you live, it'll know
your preferences, if you're getting together with friends, it'll take their
preferences into account."

Gates says Microsoft is sponsoring basic scientific research that will
address questions as how humans  recognize patterns. "It's the best
investment we can make," he said, adding it's unfortunate that governments
and other companies seem unwilling to follow suit.  Smith says Microsoft
spends more than $2 billion a year  for research and development, although
the majority of that is aimed directly at creating products.

                      Virus Awareness Month Announced

Symantec Corp. has declared the period between Feb. 15 and March 15, "Virus
Awareness Month."  The Cupertino, California, anti-virus software publisher
says the promotion is designed to educate computer users about new virus
threats, using the well-known Michelangelo virus trigger date of March 6 as
a message vehicle.  "Because of the tremendous growth in communications via
the Internet, computer virus threats are on the rise. Symantec is committed
to protecting our customers from viruses, therefore we have established
Virus Awareness Month," says Enrique Salem, vice president of Symantec's
security and assistance business unit. "Six to nine new computer viruses
are discovered every day," notes Salem.

                       Congress Gets E-Mail Threats

Forged e-mail messages directed at members of the Senate and House of
Representatives and threatening to  delete every file on Capitol Hill
computers are being investigated by the FBI.  The San Jose, California,
Mercury News reports the messages which began appearing in government
e-mail boxes Feb. 3 stating they  are from a "gang of cypherpunks dedicated
to the eradication of your systems," according to The Associated Press.
"Although the messages bear the return addresses of a handful of legitimate
Internet users," says AP, "the identities of those senders appear to have
been forged by an unknown hacker or hackers. One of the
victims was an edior at the Mercury News."

John N. McConnell, a computer systems manager with the Rules and
Administration Committee, which manages the chamber's computer systems,
says there has been no damage to any government files in the Senate,
adding, "We found no traffic or any attachments that could do damage, so we
think it's just a threat by someone who seems to want to be disruptive."
The FBI's Computer Crime Squad in New York is  investigating, spokesman Jim
Margolin told the wire service.

                     Net Confusion Forces Name Change

A leading developer of high-performance graphical software has changed its
name from X Inside to Xi Graphics. The reason: ongoing confusion between
the software developer and the increasing number of X-rated pornography
companies on the Internet.  "We develop software that solves performance,
compatibility and correctness issues in the UNIX X Windows environment,"
explains Richard Van Dyke, vice president of marketing for the Denver-based
company. "However, we do not address the performance issues of the sexually

The name X Inside brought a plethora of requests for pornographic material,
and even impacted the company principals in their dealings with people
outside the computer field. "An aspiring model even went so far as to show
me a portfolio of highly suggestive photographs," says Thomas Roell, Xi
Graphics' president and chief technology designer. "We felt a name change
was in order."  Xi Graphics' Web site is located at

                       Apple announces new products

Apple Computer, Inc. announced Monday a bevy of new products. Among the
products unveiled are the  Macintosh PowerBook 3400, the fastest laptop
computer on the market at 240 MHz; a complete line of high- performance
Power Macintosh computers for professionals; fast Power Macintosh computers
for K-12  education customers; the new eMate 300 mobile computer for K-12
education customers; the MessagePad  2000 handheld mobile Internet computer
for business professionals; and a digital camera.

             Japanese temple to open cemetery on the Internet

In Japan it will soon be possible to be virtually dead. A Buddhist temple
in Hiroshima plans to open a  "virtual graveyard" on the Internet. Visitors
can choose different types of electronic tombstones and include  photos of
the deceased and family records on a Web page. They can create their own
memorials in advance  and leave informal wills for their families. A monk
at the Kannonin temple said the idea came from people  who live too far
away from the temple to visit, but wanted to tend family memorials and pay
respects to ancestors.

                        IQ/LiveWeb upgrade released

IQ Software, a provider of end-user decision support solutions, Monday
announced version 6.0 of its web- enabled database reporting solution,
IQ/LiveWeb. Version 6.0 simplifies and speeds implementation of the
IQ/LiveWeb solution with new features that include automatic deployment of
dynamic reporting, the ability  to build and deploy linked multi-tier
documents from a single report and enhancements to report development  and
HTML capabilities. For product information, visit IQ Software's web site

         Magic Solutions, Microsoft to integrate retrieval service

Magic Solutions Inc., a provider of automated help desk and asset
management software, announced Monday  an agreement with Microsoft Corp. to
integrate its full-text search and retrieval engine with a future edition
of TechNet, Microsoft's information resource for technical professionals.
The updated release of TechNet,  with Magic Solution's Statistical
Information Retrieval (SIR), is planned for fall 1997. Using embedded
artificial intelligence, neural networks and natural language processing,
SIR can search more than 150,000 pages of technical information in seconds.

        Black Entertainment Television, Inc. and Microsoft team up

Black Entertainment Television, Inc., and Microsoft Corp. announced a joint
venture Monday. MSBET,  LLC., based in Washington, D.C., will produce and
distribute programming aimed at the African-American  community. The new
MSBET site, located on the World Wide Web at, will replace
the  existing BET Networks web site. MSBET.COM will offer a sneak premiere
with "A Celebration of Black  Culture." The full launch is slated for late
spring.  Offerings will include information, entertainment, education and
networking platforms.

           Infinite Technologies offers cell phone e-mail access

Infinite Technologies, provider of enterprise messaging solutions, Tuesday
announced plans to integrate its  Infinite InterChange remote e-mail server
software with AT&T Wireless's PocketNet Phones using Unwired  Planet's
UP.Link platform. This will allow users to retrieve, reply, forward, delete
and create new e-mail  messages from anywhere via cellular telephones.
UP.Link supports a variety of e-mail systems such as  cc:Mail, Microsoft
Mail, Microsoft Exchange and ExpressIT! 2000.

             Software troubleshoots Windows NT server problems

Microtest, Inc. Tuesday announced NT COMPAS, a software option that runs on
Microtest's NetWare  COMPAS. NetWare COMPAS is a handheld LAN
troubleshooting tool designed to identify common  problems that occur on
Ethernet networks.  The new software allows users to check and solve
problems on  their Windows NT server-based networks. COMPAS combines
features of protocol analyzers, cable testers,  NetWare, TCP/IP and NT
utilities, and serial communications testers.

           IDC researches battle for leadership of server market

Windows NT server shipments will lead the market by 1998, but revenues will
only amount to 50 percent of  the UNIX market in 2000, according to
International Data Corporation (IDC) research. Revenue growth is  projected
to increase at a 56 percent annual rate from 1995-2000. This trend will
continue through the year  2000 as the battle for market dominance
continues.  The server is the most important portion of the hardware
segment because it dictates which peripherals can attach to it, what
communication ports are available and what systems and applications
software will run, IDC said.

              Toshiba announces 64 Megabit NAND flash EEPROM

Toshiba America Electronic Components, Inc. Tuesday announced its latest
generation of NAND flash  electrically erasable programmable read only
memory (EEPROM). The device (TC58V64FT) is a single 3.3  volt 64Mb NAND
designed to meet the specific demands of a wide range of solid state mass
storage  products. The TC58V64FT incorporates the same pin-out as Toshiba's
16Mb NAND and 32Mb NAND  enabling users to upgrade easily without having to
change the layout of the printed circuit board, the company said.

             OnLive! and The Site announce virtual news studio

OnLive! Technologies ( and ZDTV's The Site
( announced a  partnership that plans to take
multimedia interactivity to a new level with "The Virtual Site," a 3D
environment that allows groups of people to talk together over the
Internet, the companies said Tuesday.  Visitors to The Virtual Site have
the opportunity to talk with groups of people in the 3D setting, and also
have the chance to meet on-air and on-site celebrities to talk about the
show.  Anyone with a multimedia  Pentium and a basic 14.4 connection to the
Internet can access The Virtual Site.

                  New intranet software products released

XcelleNet, Inc. Tuesday announced NetEssentials, a new family of software
utility products being designed  to simplify the way companies integrate
intranet technologies into their existing enterprise systems. The
NetEssentials product line is being developed to provide advanced system
management to clients connected to  corporate intranets. NetEssentials also
is being designed to facilitate delivery of web-based content, Internet
mail and software, the company said.

              Free web-based e-mail access service introduced

Four11 Corporation Wednesday announced the beta launch of RocketMail, a
free web-based e-mail service.  Consumers and businesses can now use
RocketMail to access their private e-mail messages from any  computer
connected to the web. RocketMail is fully integrated with the Four11
directory, which contains more than 11 million e-mail addresses. Anyone can
get a RocketMail beta account by going to and
registering. RocketMail works on any platform, using any web browser, on
computers connected to the Internet.

                Government crackdown on Internet modem scam

The federal government Wednesday announced a crackdown on an Internet scam
offering "free" software,  which surreptitiously took over home computer
modems and ran up costly international long-distance  charges. The Federal
Trade Commission won a court order ending the scam, in which consumers
surfing the   web came across advertisements at sites like
"" for "all nude all free" pictures. The  catch? They
had to download a special Windows 95 software viewer. Once the software was
in the computer, it secretly took control of the modem.

                  Web hackers may threaten bank accounts

German hackers have found a way to trick people into transferring money
into the computer robbers' bank  accounts, New Scientist magazine reported
Thursday. It quoted the Chaos Computer Club as saying it could  hide a
malicious computer program known as an "applet" in a web site. The applet
would surreptitiously   transfer itself into a person's computer when they
dialed up that site. Once inside, it would search for Intuit  Inc.'s
Quicken, a financial management program that can be used to manage bank
accounts via a modem.   he next time the person dials up the bank, the
applet slips in an order telling the bank to transfer money to the hacker's

              "Extensible HTML" available for web publishing

The Graphic Communications Association and its Information Technologies
division announced Wednesday  its support for XML--a new, extensible "HTML"
to support emerging web publishing requirements.  Extensible Markup
Language, XML, is a simple dialect of SGML. But XML is different from HTML
in that  it is extensible. This means that web publishers can either extend
HTML by adding their own tags, or can create their own descriptive tag

             File Mine offers downloadable shareware/freeware

CMP's TechWeb Wednesday launched its 10th web site for technology news and
information resources: File   mine. The site, at,
features a comprehensive database of downloadable  shareware/freeware files
for DOS, Windows 3.1/95, Macintosh and other software platforms. The site
helps  users find files by either searching a database or a directory.
Files fall into five major categories--games,  home/education,
Internet/intranet, multimedia/design and programs/utilities.

           Head-mounted display for wearable computers developed

Xybernaut Corporation announced Thursday its head-mounted display (HMD) for
integration into its latest  computer system, the Mobile Assistant II.
Greenway Engineering of San Jose, Calif., will produce the  HMD. The Mobile
Assistant II is a patented speech-activated wearable computer that consists
of the HMD, a  belt-worn processor unit and a battery pack. The Mobile
Assistant II allows hands-free access to computer  information.

                 All-digital ultrasound system introduced

ATL Ultrasound Thursday introduced the HDI 1000, a software-based, all-
digital ultrasound system. The HDI 1000 system is an ultrasound system for
general imaging based on ATL's broadband HDI technology and the creation of
a sophisticated operating environment that harnesses the increasing power
and cost efficiencies of advanced software. In the HDI 1000 system, ATL's
Multitasking Software Management technology replaces more than half of the
ultrasound system's hardware components with software.

             DOWNLOAD.COM is preferred Macintosh software site

MacCentral has selected CNET's DOWNLOAD.COM ( as
the preferred source for software for the Macintosh platform. MacCentral
( will include a direct link to DOWNLOAD.COM on
the front door of their web site. Offering a library of the Internet's top
freeware and shareware titles for both the Mac and PC, DOWNLOAD.COM
automatically determines what kind of computer the user has and groups the
programs for that platform into categories for easy browsing.

             Voice Control Systems launches next "killer app"

Voice Control Systems, Inc., a supplier of speech recognition technology,
Thursday announced the introduction of a system that automatically answers
and directs a company's telephone calls, as would a  human receptionist.
The Ready Receptionist asks callers for the name of the person or
department being called. Using speech recognition understanding, the system
immediately connects the call to the appropriate party. The Ready
Receptionist also greets outside callers with the company name.

           A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N

                              LEXMARK OPTRA C
                               LASER PRINTER

For a limited time only; If you wish to have a FREE sample printout sent to
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                     STReport's LEXMARK Printout Offer
                               P.O. Box 6672
                     Jacksonville, Florida 32205-6155
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If  you  would  like a sample printout that's suitable  for  framing.   Yes
that's  right!   Suitable for Framing.  Order this package.   It'll  be  on
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sample package please include a check or money order in the amount of $6.95
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Be  sure  to include your full return address and telephone number  .   The
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           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

CIS Woes STR Spotlight

                   CompuServe Pink Slips 20 WOW Editors

Does this event mark the End of an Era. Or, the beginning of a New Era?

By R.F. Mariano

     CompuServe laid off 30 (approx) from the editorial group who had
worked on the company's defunct WOW family service and were destined to be
the Editors of Content on each of the current CISD forums.  This entire
concept has been the laughing stock of most experienced Online Service
observers.  The firings come close on the heels of Monday's announcement of
the "resignation departure" of CEO Robert Massey, although more than one
CompuServe representative insisted the two moves are unrelated.  This
reporter is assured by his sources that this is the beginning of a newer
bolder CompuServe.  Even if  spokesperson William Giles stated  "It's not a
housecleaning," we feel it is just that and only the tip of the iceberg at
this time.

     Giles patently termed the layoffs a "consolidation," and said "around
20" employees were directly affected.  It is sad to see the conservatism
and pinstripe attitude is still prevalent.  Using terms like consolidation
is corporate lingoism and the "Twenty" figure a bit of corporate
doublespeak.  Giles did however note the WOW staffers had been in a state
of ever changing flux since WOW  was decided to be a loser.  CSI CompuServe
Interactive. is another of the corporate word games that must bring
sarcastic smiles to the faces of many who observe this sort of foolishness
from as distance.  What better way to the see the big picture?  The goofy
name game continues.  CompuServe Information Services really sez it all and
sez it well.  CIS has had almost violent meetings over the Editorial
schtick.  Ever since the folding of WOW and the proposed migration of the
WOW Editorial Group to CIS proper, there has been nothing but dissention
and unrest among those contract holders who still cared.  "The demise of
the Editorial Group is a most welcome event."  It was mentioned to this

     This past November, CompuServe conceded WOW was a turkey.  Even after
launching an extensive and very expensive per sub marketing campaign.  The
company has hardheadedly resisted moving to flat rate pricing, which many
observers clearly state worked against efforts to draw in the disenchanted
AOL subs looking to switch.  While a number of employees formerly part of
WOW, mostly in advertising and design, have found new positions within
CompuServe, the editorial group had nowhere else to go in the company.
While the Whigs at CIS called it "Content Creation", it was all clearly
seen as an attempt to control everything seen and done on CIS.  CompuServe
has primarily gathered content from a variety of other sources, most highly
acclaimed and of excellent quality.  With these rather strange concepts of
"WOW-like vanilla only" original writing and reporting, the entire flavor
and character of CIS would have dramatically changed.  Most informed folks
felt this change would have only made CIS look like and behave as an AOL
"wanna be".  

        Giles continued... by adding that each of the laid-off workers was given
 the bad news during personal encounters with management.
"It's a sad and very unfortunate thing." He said.      Additionally, this
past Monday, CompuServe's majority shareholder, H&R Block, announced that
Massey would be exiting "to pursue other interests." Many informed
observers speculated that Robert Massey's surprising but not unexpected
departure could be a resolute beginning toward the selling of CompuServe.
"Rumor has it there are those at H&R Block wanting to spin off CompuServe"
Further it was said, "They want to make it (CompuServe) as attractive to
prospective buyers as possible."   CompuServe recently reported a loss of
$58 million, or about 63 cents per share. This contrasts dramatically with
a reported profit of $14 million, or 19 cents a share, almost a year

Editor Note: On the STReport WEB Site, one can find an article written on
05/12/1995 about the "Demise of the Online Services. The Article is
available through our Editorial Page..  If only the CIS Pinstripes and
Whigs would've read it then and listened.

EDUPAGE STR Focus        Keeping the users informed


Telecom Pact Opens Up World Phone Markets
Apple Shines Up Product Line
U S West Rolls Out High-Speed Internet Access
Year 2000 Insurance
Virgin Net
Compaq Breaks $1,000 Barrier With New Computer
Mac Clone Sales Boost The Numbers
Shaping Bandwidth For Big Results
Hate Bytes
Speeding Up Of Http Protocol
H-P Cuts Distribution Time In Europe
Motorola Mac Clones To Offer BeOs
RealVideo Debut
Companies Not Rushing To The Internet
Is Business Chat The Killer App?
Alta Vista Enhances Search Procedures
U.S. Investigates Silicon Graphics' Russian Sales
Experiment Shows Students Do Better Online
Baghdad Sees Internet As End Of Civilization
Internet White Pages Standard Gains Momentum
Judge Shuts Down Another Cyberporn Scam
Teledesic Looks At Scaling Back
Can Supercomputers Really Replace Nuclear Testing?
Software Piracy Estimated At $4 Billion
Study Predicts NCs, WebTVs Will Fizzle
Microsoft Bankrolls Game Software Designer

The nations of the World Trade Organization, including the U.S., have
reached an agreement through the WTO to open up their telecommunications
markets -- a move that is expected to usher in a new era of competition in
phone service worldwide.  Acting U.S. trade commissioner Charlene Barshefsy
says that the  agreement will lead to approximately 1 million new jobs in
this country over the next 10 years because U.S.  companies "are the most
competitive telecommunications providers in the world," and Federal
Communications Commissioner Reed Hundt calls the pact "great news for
American consumers" because it  purportedly will reduce the price of
international calls by 80% over the next ten years.  (Washington Post 16
Feb 97)

                       APPLE SHINES UP PRODUCT LINE

Apple is ready to announce the PowerBook 3400 computer it claims to be "the
fastest notebook computer in  the world," along with new desktop computers
featuring higher performance and lower costs than current  models.  Saying
that the company's objective "is to continue to dominate the publishing
area," executive vice  president Marco Landi says the company also will
introduce a digital camera for personal publishing.  In  addition, Apple
will begin marketing its Emate 300, which will sell to schools in the U.S.
for about $700.  (Financial Times 15 Feb 97)


U S West is the first Baby Bell to proceed with plans for offering high-
speed Internet access via digital  subscriber line (DSL) technology,
planning a first-quarter '97 launch in 11 markets throughout its 14-state
territory.  The high-speed service will cost $175 a month, plus a one-time
installation fee.  The U S West  system will use Motorola modems and
Netscape's Navigator browser.  (Broadcasting & Cable 27 Jan 97)

                            YEAR 2000 INSURANCE

Marsh & McLennan Inc. is offering businesses a hedge against Year 2000
problems.  The New York  insurance broker will sell up to $200 million
worth of insurance against business losses caused by the  policyholder's
own computer system, or by another company's neglect to become Year 2000-
compliant, or  by data supplied by another company's computers.  Before the
policy is issued, however, Marsh &  McLennan will enlist experts to make
sure that the policy-buyer is taking all possible steps to avoid Year  2000
problems.  (Information Week 3 Feb 97)

                                VIRGIN NET

Richard Branson, founder and head of Virgin Atlantic Airways, says the
Airline plans to be the first to offer  the Internet available via "Virgin
Net" at every seat, in every class, by year's end.  "Besides the things you
can now do on the Internet, there will be in-flight shopping, so that your
duty-free will be waiting for you  when you arrive at your destination. You
can answer your e-mail, do research, and conduct all sorts of  business.
Of course, you can also get information about your destination, make dinner
and hotel  reservations, book tours.  These are things that you can do now,
but may not have time for.  But on a long  flight, it could be a valuable
service and provide fun."  (Forbes ASAP 24 Feb 97)


Next week, Compaq Computer will release an ultra-low-cost, $999 PC designed
to appeal to the 60% of  U.S. homes still without a computer.  The Presario
2000 comes with a 133-Mhz processor, a CD-ROM  drive, a 33.6-Kpbs modem,
and built-in stereo speakers.  "We've tried to hit the market with a fully
featured  product -- one you don't have to apologize for," says a Compaq
senior VP.  The new approach to low-cost  computer marketing is critical
for the PC industry, which has already saturated the most likely market --
professional, high-income families with children.  With growth slowing to
14% last year from 23% two  years ago, industry observers say companies
must develop new products to target lower-income households.   (Business
Week 17 Feb 97)


Sales of Apple computers slid to 5.4% in the fourth quarter of last year,
according to Dataquest Inc., but  when Mac clone sales are added in, the
Macintosh market share rises to 7.2%.  About a third of the  Macintosh-type
computers sold in the fourth quarter were non-Apple machines, most of them
going to  corporate, rather than personal, users.  The corporate sales, not
traditionally a strong market for Apple,  boosted the Macintosh share of
the business market to 9.4% in December, up from 7.4% for most of last
year.  "What you see in the clone numbers is potential:  that if Apple can
just turn corner on all the bad  publicity, there are a lot of people in
place to really grow this market," says a Dataquest analyst.  (Wall  Street
Journal 14 Feb 97)


Most companies are struggling to expand their bandwidth by adding faster
network links, which is expensive  and doesn't always guarantee faster
access during periods of heavy and unexpected traffic.  Packeteer Inc.
takes a different approach with its PacketShaper product that enables
network managers to "shape" and  enforce policies on which individuals or
groups of users should receive bandwidth priority.  The hierarchical
ranking system applies to both incoming and outgoing use, and can be
configured based on connection speed,  application type or IP address.
(CIO 1 Feb 97)  < >

                                HATE BYTES

Early findings of a study e-mail use at a large mid-Atlantic university
suggest there is, in general, no more  harassment by e-mail than by
telephone or snail mail, but that sexual harassment of women by e-mail is
four  to five times more likely than racial or ethnic harassment.  The
Prejudice Institute, a nonprofit group in  Baltimore that released the
study, found that 10% of the women who responded to its survey said that
they  received threatening e-mail, while 3% of the survey respondents said
they had received racial or ethnic hate mail.  (New York Times 16 Feb 97)

                       SPEEDING UP OF HTTP PROTOCOL

The World Wide Web Consortium in Cambridge, Mass., an industry standards-
setting group, says that a  redesign of the http protocol that has been the
basis of the Web since 1990 will speed up downloads by two to  eight times.
Browsers supporting the new H.T.T.P./1.1 protocol will be available in the
spring.  (New York Times 17 Feb 97)


Hewlett-Packard is allowing some of its European distributors to assemble H-
P's personal computers  themselves, in order to cut delivery time to as
little as two days.  The move will make H-P more competitive  with
manufacturers that build their machines in Europe.  (Atlanta Journal-
Constitution 18 Feb 97)


Motorola's Macintosh-compatible computers will now come with Be, Inc.'s
operating system in addition to  Mac/OS.  Be's object-oriented operating
system, which was designed to excel in the processing of video and  audio
data, is highly "multi-threaded," which means that it can break individual
programs into multiple  "threads" so that multiple processors can be added
to the system to speed up processing by having each  processor handle
different threads.  Be, which has made similar deals with other companies
and is expected  to be making one with IBM, plans to begin distributing its
operating system free over the Web for installation  on current-generation
Macintosh machines this spring.  In addition, the company is developing
"Virtual  Mac" software, which will allow a Macintosh user to run Macintosh
applications simultaneously with the Be  operating system.  (New York Times
18 Feb 97)

                              REALVIDEO DEBUT

Now, from the makers of RealAudio, we have RealVideo - Progressive
Networks' new software, touted as  the first such product capable of
delivering broadcast-quality video over the Internet.  The software
operates over modems operating at 28.8 Kbps and up.  An analyst for
Dataquest gives the product high marks for  picture quality, and says,
"It's going to force everyone to move at breakneck speed."  RealVideo
"squeezes  more out of the bandwidth than anyone thought possible... but
users won't be satisfied with what they will  see this week for long."  The
beta version is available at <>.  (Broadcasting & Cable
10 Feb 97)


A Deloitte & Touche survey of almost 1,500 companies around the world found
that the overwhelming  majority have no plans to use the Internet for
business transactions, and only one in 20 companies polled  conduct
business via the Internet.  (Toronto Globe & Mail 18 Feb 97)

                     IS BUSINESS CHAT THE KILLER APP?

CEO James Tito of eShare Technologies Inc. says using "chat" as a strategy
for doing business on the  Internet is the Next Big Thing.  And although
the percentage of corporate sites using chat right now is  "probably under
10%," says Tito, "it's going to grow dramatically over the next few years,
though.  According to some statistics, by 2000 the chat software market
will be in the neighborhood of $1.6 billion.   People are starting to
realize how important chat is.  It takes up something like 7.9 billion
hours of online  use.  One report said that chat takes up one-fourth of all
time spent online."  (Investor's Business Daily 18 Feb 97)


Digital's Alta Vista search engine has added an enhancement that
categorizes Web search results.  By   clicking on a button, LiveTopics
organizes pages with similar content into groups, bringing structure and
meaning to the process.  The LiveTopics software creates its topics
dynamically using statistical analysis,  rather than relying on a group of
predefined categories.  The beta version is available at:
<>  (InfoWorld Electric 13 Feb 97)


The U.S. Commerce Department is looking into Silicon Graphics' sale last
fall of four supercomputers to the  All-Russian Scientific Research
Institute for Technical Physics without first obtaining an export license.
The Institute is the new name for the notorious Chelyabinsk-70, the former
super-secret laboratory that designs   most of Russia's nuclear weapons.
Silicon Graphics had been told the computers would be used for  "modeling
of earth-water pollution caused by extension of radioactive substance."
The sale appears to  violate a one-year-old Clinton administration
prohibition against unlicensed sales of computers with speeds  beyond two
billion calculations per second to Russian nuclear labs.  Violation of the
ban could result in a  fine, or the suspension of the company's export
rights.  (Wall Street Journal 18 Feb 97)


A sociology professor at California State University at Northridge
conducted his own experiment to test  online learning, randomly dividing
his statistics class in half, and teaching one half by lecture and the
other  half by Web assignments, online discussion groups and e-mail.  The
students who'd been banned from the  physical classroom scored an average
of 20% higher than those who'd attended in-person.  "The motivation  for
doing this was to provide some hard, experimental evidence that didn't seem
to exist anywhere," says the  prof, who plans to expand his research to
determine whether the online students performed better because  they spent
more time collaborating with their classmates, or because of the online
format of the class.  (Chronicle of Higher Education 21 Feb 97)


An editorial in the Iraqi government newspaper Al-Jumhuriya says that the
Internet -- which is not accessible  in Iraq -- is "the end of
civilizations, cultures, interests, and ethics," and "one of the American
means to  enter every house in the world.  They want to become the only
source for controlling human beings in the new electronic village."  (AP 17
Feb 97)


The Internet Engineering Task Force is moving forward on its plan to
develop a standard way to present  White Pages directory information,
including e-mail addresses, URLs and phone numbers, on the Internet.   The
White Pages are designed to standardize the way such information appears in
Lightweight Directory  Access Protocol (LDAP) directories; the LDAP itself
specifies only how information should be requested and  updated.  A final
version of LDAP 3 should be available in the next few months.  (InfoWorld
Electric 14 Feb 97)


A federal district judge in New York has shut down an operation that lured
pornography-seekers into visiting  Web sites that surreptitiously dialed a
telephone number in Moldova in the former Soviet Union, running up
exorbitant long-distance phone charges.  The scam is similar to several
others which have been uncovered in  recent months.  A Web surfer is
enticed to visit sites with names such as sexygirls, beavisbutthead, and
ladult, which promise "All Nude All Free Pictures" and require that a
special "viewer" must be downloaded  to review the images.  However, the
viewer contains software that turns off the user's local connection to an
Internet Service Provider and silently dials the number in Moldova.  The
Federal Trade Commission says  this is "one of the most insidious scams" it
has ever seen.  (New York Times 20 Feb 97)


Teledesic Corp., the high-profile, $9-billion satellite communications
project backed by cellular magnate  Craig McCaw and computer mogul Bill
Gates, is exploring options to scale back its 840-satellite system,
beginning initially with just 288 "birds." The satellites will occupy a
low-Earth orbit, 400-700 miles above  the Earth, circling in 12 orbital
planes or "rings," with 24 satellites in each ring. A spokesman for
Teledesic  says the company "has not altered" its original plan, but may
start off with a more modest arrangement.   (Wall Street Journal 19 Feb 97)


Stanford University professor Robert Laughlin, who's worked on bomb-related
physics at Lawrence  Livermore Lab since 1981, has his doubts about the
ability of supercomputers to accurately predict how  nuclear weapons will
react to aging and storage conditions:  "Computer programs can only
simulate the stuff  you know.  Suppose you left a personal computer out in
the rain for a year.  Is there a program that can tell  you whether it will
still run?  Of course not -- it all depends on what happened to it.
Changes happen over  time that you are not sure how to measure.  Some
matter, some don't.  The problem is the things you didn't  think to put in
the simulation."  Indeed, past attempts to simulate very complex situations
have not always  been successful, and the software codes to predict whether
bombs will explode or fizzle "are full of  adjustable parameters that have
been fit to (underground test) data.  If the new codes don't match the old
ones that correctly predicted experiment results," (and Laughlin bets they
won't) "the designers will simply  throw them out."  (Scientific American
Mar 97)


According to provisional data released Feb. 13 by the Business Software
Alliance and the Software  Publishers Association, software company losses
due to international piracy totaled around $4 billion last  year.  The data
shows China ranking number one in illegal copying of programs, followed by
Brazil, Russia, Italy and Canada.  (BNA Daily Report for Executives 14 Feb


A study by Aragon Consulting Group predicts that consumer demand for
network computers and devices for  connecting to the Internet through TV
sets won't come close to meeting vendor expectations.  "If you look at  the
45% of U.S. households that have computers (which is the market targeted by
NC makers), 85% of those  have children, and those kids want the same level
of computing at home that they have in school -- the ability  to run
different applications and store data, for example.  The cost factor is
diminished when you consider  you can buy a used Pentium running at 75 MHz
for about the same price as an NC.  So why would you want  to buy a low-
grade home appliance?" says Aragon's president, who sees the outlook for
WebTVs as equally  dismal:  "With this type of adjunct appliance, the
industry hopes to address the 55% or 60% of American  homes without
computers, but, again, they haven't thought it through.  Half of those
households don't care at  all about computers or the Internet and never
will.  And the other half, 25% or so of households, aren't very  eager to
enhance the capabilities of their TVs."  (Investor's Business Daily 20 Feb


Microsoft is investing in a minority stake in Digital Anvil, a start-up
company founded by a former VP at  Origin Systems Inc., a subsidiary of
Electronic Arts Inc.  Microsoft has also pledged to fund production of
Digital Anvil games and market them under a joint brand.  Digital Anvil
hopes to make other deals with film  and media companies to develop
interactive movies and online games for multiple players.  The first two
titles are expected to be science-fiction action games.  (Wall Street
Journal 19 Feb 97)

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      Yggdrasil approved by The World Wide Web Consortium to develop.

                            "Arena" Web Browser

Free software takes aim at web browsers.

San Jose, CA -- February 17, 1997 -- The World Wide Web Consortium [W3C]
has approved Yggdrasil  Computing to coordinate future development of
Arena, a powerful graphical web browser originally developed as the
Consortium's research testbed.  Under the agreement, Yggdrasil will
undertake new  development and support the developer community on the
internet.  Yggdrasil will issue regular releases,  provide a centralized
file archive and web site, integrate contributed enhancements and fixes,
create mailing  lists for developers and users, and facilitate widespread
use of Arena by others.

Yggdrasil's additions to Arena will be placed under the "GNU General Public
License", which allows  unlimited distribution both for profit and not for
profit, provided that source code is made freely available,  including
source code to any modifications.  No exclusive rights have been given to
Yggdrasil.  Anybody  could legally do what Yggdrasil is doing, although the
Consortium now considers Yggdrasil the formal  maintainer of Arena.


The Arena web browser creates a new vehicle by which developers of browser
technology will be able to  reach large numbers of users.  "We are eager to
work with browser companies that want to use Arena to  widely distribute
free browser software as part of their marketing strategy.  We are
especially interested in  working with members of the World Wide Web
Consortium," explained Yggdrasil president Adam Richter.


Although Arena currently only runs under Linux and Linux-like systems such
as UNIX(R) and FreeBSD,  Yggdrasil announced that it has taken the first
step toward bringing Arena to MS-Windows platforms by  licensing an X-
Windows emulator from Pearl Software which will enable an MS-Windows
version of Arena.   "Because the Windows environment is not our focus, we
are looking for a partner company to market the  DOS product," said
Richter.  "We believe that CD-ROM titles that include a browser, the OEM
market and  other bundling arrangements would be substantial opportunities
for such a company, just for starters."


Arena is a graphical web browser comprised entirely of free software.  Its
origins predate proprietary  packages such as Netscape Navigator, Microsoft
Internet Explorer and Mosaic.  It is the source of a number   of
innovations which have since been copied by other web browsers.  "Arena has
pioneered important  HTML concepts like tables and style sheets. Without
Arena, the Web would not look the same today," said  Hakon Lie, Style
Sheets Lead at W3C. "We are happy to see the Arena code being maintained by
the free  software community and Yggdrasil."   Now that the free software
community is organizing around Arena,  development is expected to
accelerate dramatically.  "Our first developer snapshots incorporate an
upgrade to  the latest web library from the World Wide Web Consortium,
which facilitates inclusion of URL types  designed to ease interfaces to
search engines" predicted Yggdrasil's Arena project coordinator, Qing Long.
"After that, we expect to do developer maintenance releases as often as
once a week as we stabilize the code and add new features."


The W3C was created to develop common protocols that enhance the
interoperability and promote the  evolution of the World Wide Web. It is an
industry consortium jointly run by the MIT Laboratory for  Computer Science
(LCS) in the USA, the National Institute for Research in Computer Science
and Control  (INRIA) in France and Keio University in Japan. Services
provided by the Consortium include: a repository  of information about the
World Wide Web for developers and users; reference code implementations to
embody and promote standards; and various prototype and sample applications
to demonstrate use of new  technology. To date over 156 organizations are
Members of the Consortium.


Pearl Software is a software company founded in 1993 to bring free
graphical software developed by the  Linux and unix communities to the
Windows market.  The Oakland, California, based company is best  known for
its Win-Emacs product, a Windows version of the popular Xemacs development


Yggdrasil Computing is a software company founded in 1992 to turn free
software developed on the internet  into viable solutions for businesses
and consumers.  Yggdrasil publishes, supports and develops a line of
products based on Linux, a clone of the UNIX(R) operating system consisting
entirely of free software  developed on the internet.  The Arena web
browser will play an important role in Yggdrasil's efforts to  provide
complete solutions to customers based on the free software model.


New releases of the Arena web browser are accessible on the internet under
the URL

There are two mailing lists for Arena:

Participants may obtain information on  subscribing to either list by
sending an email message with "help" in the body of the message to  Bug reports should be sent to arena  A web page is  available at


Bill Selmeier
Yggdrasil Computing, Inc.
+1 408 261 6630

Sally Khudairi
W3C - World Wide Web Consortium

Steve Cook
Pearl Software
(510) 642-4361
UNIX is a registered trademark of X / O p e n

Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Internet Explorer are trademarks of
Microsoft Corporation.

Kids Computing Corner
Frank Sereno, Editor

                        The Kids' Computing Corner
                    Computer news and software reviews
                       from a parent's point of view
                                In the News

We have a winner in the Titanic software giveaway.  He is Don Borchelt of
Morris, Illinois.  Congratulations to you and your family.  We will be
having another contest in a few weeks so watch for details here!

                             The Atomic Files
                              Windows CD-ROM
                         Suggested Retail: $34.95
                              ages 10 and up
                              L3 Interactive
                           3000 W. Olympic Blvd.
                          Santa Monica, CA 90404
                              (310) 264-4188
                           Program Requirements
                              OS:            Windows 3.1
                              CPU:           486/50
                              HD Space:      1 MB

                    Memory:        8 MB
                    Graphics:      640 x 480, 256 colors
                    CD-ROM:   Double-speed
                    Audio:         16-bit sound card
                    Optional: printer
review by Jason Sereno (

L3 Interactive recently released The Atomic Files, a multimedia CD-ROM that
chronicles the Nuclear Age and its impact on the world.  The Atomic Files
uses a Learning Cube interface to present interesting information about the
history of Nuclear energy from the first theories, to the devastation it
has caused, and the prosperity it may bring.

Honestly, the Learning Cube interface did not impress me.  The Learning
Cube is simple and intuitive, but it does suffer from lengthy animation
sequences after user input.  The interface itself is basically a way to
pinpoint what information you would like to learn more about.  There are
nine different learning sections in three different chapters listed on the
box.  Each has its own information presented in short films and diagrams.

After you choose one of these sections, you discover that each section has
three different areas of its own.  Two of the areas are movies that show
different aspects of the particular event happening.  These movies have
real footage of the given topics.  Occasionally, small pictures are placed
along side of the movie while it is running.  When clicked upon, these
pictures give you information that was not in the movie.  Although it is a
good source of information, I was confused on how I was to watch the movie,
then read the short captions under the pictures, and once again return to
the movie.  The pictures replace themselves after a short time, and it is
very awkward stopping and starting the movie over and over again.

The third of the sections is different because it has mostly diagrams,
pictures and text.  Some topics included in this part include the theories
behind the nuclear bomb and the effects radiation had on people in cities
such as Hiroshima.  Some of these pictures would probably not be suitable
for children of younger ages.  The pictures, which show the effects of
radiation, are not too gruesome, but they are definitely not uplifting.

The music in the program is suitable for the theme.  There are different
songs for each section.  The Hiroshima music does have a dramatic tone. I
feel it is very appropriate considering the story that is told by Kaz
Suyeishi, a survivor of an atomic bombing during World War II.  The music
collection includes many original pieces by award-winning composers. In
fact, the overall sound in this program is remarkable.  The sound with the
movies and the narration are both done very well.

The Atomic Files also has a web directory feature.  This allows users to
access atomic-related Internet links.  With this function, users can get
updates on current events, so the program will never become obsolete.  You
can obtain this information with any browser, but The Atomic Files does
include an Internet access kit that will give first time web users the
ability to access new information as it arises.

The Atomic Files has great information and explains it easily enough for
children of all ages to understand.  The program may confuse children that
are not at a junior high level of science because it deals with rather
complex theories and  early experiments.  I found myself reading over
materials more than once before I could comprehend them.  The program has
much more than just facts.  It has an abundance of footage and pictures
that will keep your child interested while learning at the same time.  If
you wish to learn more about the Atomic Age, then The Atomic Files would be
a great investment for you and your family.

                          Avery Cardoza's Casino
                              Windows CD-ROM
                           Cardoza Entertainment
                      445 Marine View Ave., Suite 120
                             Del Mar, CA 92014
                              (619) 794-0401
                           Program Requirements
                              OS:            Windows 3.1
                              CPU:           486/66
                              HD Space:      8 MB
                              Memory:        8 MB
                              Graphics:      640 x 480, 256 colors
                              CD-ROM:   Double-speed
                              Audio:         16-bit sound card

review by Frank Sereno (

If you enjoy casino gambling, you're in for a real treat in Avery Cardoza's
Casino.  If you are a beginning gambler at casinos, this program is an
excellent investment to protect your money. This is the most true-to-life
simulation of the glitz and risks inherent in Las Vegas style gambling
available today.  Not only does this program give you the thrills of the
big win and the chills of going bust, but it also is a tutorial to increase
your odds in winning in the gaming halls.

The program features detailed 3D graphics and interactive dealers.  You can
choose from six major games with each featuring numerous variations.
Blackjack, craps, roulette, video poker, keno and slots are available for
your pleasure.  Gameplay reflects the true casino odds for the most
realistic gambling simulation yet.

The feature that really sets Avery Cardoza's Casino apart is the expert
tutorial.  Before you begin playing a game, you can ask the program for
advice on the best way to play the action.  You can also ask for advice
between individual plays or you can set the expert to cue you when you make
an unfavorable decision.  Say you are playing "tens or better" video poker.
You draw two hearts and three diamonds with a King high.  If you try to
discard your hearts to go for a diamond flush, the expert will beep in when
you try to draw the new cards.  It will tell you that the best play is to
hold the king of diamonds and draw four new cards.  This expert guidance is
available for all the games of chance in the program.

This advice is all based on scientific study of the variables and odds.  If
you can learn the many intricacies of the odds, you can increase your
chances of making money or at least lengthening your gambling experience.
The program also includes a 150-page book (a $15 value) filled with hints
on how to beat the odds.  Both the program and book advise the player that
the odds are ALWAYS in the house's favor.

This program features an easy to use interface.  When you're in the main
lobby of the casino, you can pick the game of your choice.  You can change
options or change games by clicking on the menu bar.  You can study the
statistics from your gambling sessions to see if your luck and skill are
improving with practice.  The Professional Statistical Tracking system
holds 577 statistical fields and it display numerous graphs showing your
success or lack of the same.

The dealers are very talkative and say hundreds of phrases. The patter is
generally friendly and light-hearted.  This keeps the games lively and
interesting.  Of course, nobody wants to hear the blackjack dealer yell
bust when you've gone over 21, but that's life at the tables.

If you like games of chance, then Avery Cardoza's Casino is a must have for
your library.  If you have been thinking about going to a casino or you've
    never had any success at gaming, this program is a most worthwhile
  investment.  $50 spent on this program can make the difference between
    winning and losing.  A few hours of entertaining practice with this
excellent educational program will be much to your advantage.  It really is
a lot of fun to play these games and you have nothing to lose but your bad
                      luck in Avery Cardoza's Casino.

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Gaming Hotwire STR Feature - The World of Contemporary Gaming

                           FEATURES OF LINKS LS
After winning nearly every award for a sports simulation possible with
LINKS 386, ACCESS Software had to dig deep and stretch the limits of
technology to bring you the next generation of LINKS--LINKS LS. So what's
new about LINKS LS? Every stroke, every blade of grass, every contour,
every chirp...Everything is NEW!


Unlimited screen resolutions means that LINKS LS can match any monitor's
maximum viewing capabilities (even 1600x1200 and higher if you have the
video RAM). Up to 16.7 million colors means the finest in near photo
realistic quality possible with today's technology. LINKS LS supports color
depths of 15 bit (32,000 colors), 16 bit (64,000 colors), and 24/32 bit
(16.7 million colors). You've simply never seen software this good!


This gives LINKS LS a realism never before achieved in the gaming industry.
As LINKS has always done, we render not just the hole itself but the entire
course. You can literally hit your ball a half-mile out of bounds! Now,
authentic ground, sand, and grass textures combine with dynamic shadows and
fog to give you a course so lifelike you can almost feel the wet grass!
LINKS LS features the most realistic ball flight ever. Our engineers have
reworked the ball dynamics giving you true-to-life ball flight! Fade your
drive just like the pros or watch as your high-arching wedge shot actually
backs up on the green.


If you get tired of stroke play (standard), you can indulge in a race for
cash with the NEW Skins game. Also included are Match Play and Best Ball
formats. LINKS LS will keep even the shortest of attention spans


With Network Play you can have up to eight players in a single game (two
workstations, four players per station). There is no restriction for
network protocols. As long as both workstations are mapped to one
concurrent drive, you're dancin'. You can play head to head with a real
human opponent even if they are across the ocean. With modem play you can
dial a remote computer anywhere the phone lines will reach and play a game
of golf--rain or shine.


Two stunning Hawaiian courses have been selected to inaugurate LINKS LS as
the first in the Resort Courses Series--The Plantation and Village courses
at Kapalua on the island of Maui. Along with Kapalua, Arnold Palmer's home
course--Latrobe Country Club in Pennsylvania--completes the 54 holes of


Ever have the feeling you've been there before? Our NEW Virtual World Tour
allows you to move freely in a three-dimensional environment of the
Plantation Clubhouse at Kapalua as well as Arnie's workshop and trophy


Golfer animations include Arnold Palmer, a young man, a young woman, and a
middle-age male golfer. Each features multiple reactions for both good and
bad shots. Timing of golfer and swing indicator are now independent so you
can witness the golfer animation in full motion video quality (up to 30
frames per second).


Camera windows are user-selectable, user-sizable and are capable of
displaying views from any of following cameras:

Top View Camera - This is an overhead 'Blimp View' showing the current
hole, ball flight, and the aiming marker. The user can position the aiming
marker or 'drop' from the top view.

Side View Camera - This is 'Side Blimp View' from a lower elevation and
shows the current hole, ball flight, and aiming marker. The user can also
position the aiming marker or 'drop' in the side view.

Green View Camera - This camera is positioned beyond the green, about 40
feet off the ground, looking back towards the tee box. This view shows the
player animation, ball flight, and aiming marker. The user can also
position the aiming marker or drop in the green view.

Chat View - for network and modem play.

Custom Views - You can position the camera almost anywhere you choose to
watch your shots like never before.

Profile View Camera - This camera shows an elevation profile from the ball
to the pin and displays appropriate elevation and distance information.

In addition to being displayed in the normal full screen view, the aiming
marker is also displayed by the Top View, Side View, Green View, and Custom
View cameras and can be repositioned by clicking in any of these camera


All the Super VGA LINKS Championship Courses will be capable of being
converted to the NEW LINKS LS course format.


The sound library editor allows you to use any standard wave (.wav) file
and add your own sounds to most of the events in the game. For instance if
you want a Bronx cheer assigned to a bogey, you can have it.


Sounds like waves crashing and dogs barking have a specific spatial
position on the course. As the player approaches these locations, the
sounds get louder. As the player turns left or right, the sounds pan across
the stereo mix and seem to come from a certain direction.


To insure full Windows 95 compatibility, we have developed the LINKS LS
Sentry. The Sentry is a Windows application that runs along side LINKS LS
and performs several important functions:

z    Uses Windows 95's Auto Play to launch SETUP.EXE & install LINKS LS
z    Creates a LINKS LS folder on your Windows 95 desktop
z    Checks to see if other programs that can interfere with LINKS LS are
        running and allows you to selectively close them
z    Maintains critical communications with Windows 95 to insure that any
        shutdown of LINKS LS is fully recoverable
z    Minimum of 16 MB of memory required for play under Windows 95

Your computer must be at least a 486 DX2 66 MHz CPU. (Not compatible with
NexGen or other CPUs without math co-processor.) It must have 12MB of RAM
(16MB to run in a window in Windows 95), 30 MB of free hard drive space
(estimated), and a 2X (double speed) CD-ROM drive (MPC Level 2 compliant).
Your video card must have at least 1 MB of video RAM (DRAM, VRAM or WRAM).
The VESA bios must be VESA 2.0 compliant, capable of displaying 800 x 600
resolution with 32K colors. VESA does not refer to your BUS type. A PCI
video card still must have a VESA bios to be VESA compliant. To get any
sound you must have at least an 8-bit sound card. A mouse is required.


Pentium 90 MHz CPU or faster, 16+ MB RAM, 4X (quad speed) or higher CD-ROM,
2 MB Local Bus video (optimum resolution 1600 x 1200 resolution in 65,000
colors requires 4 MB RAM on video card), 200 MB hard drive space, 16 bit
industry standard compatible sound card, and a mouse.

Classics & Gaming Section
Editor Dana P. Jacobson

>From the Atari Editor's Desk              "Saying it like it is!"


It had to happen this week; I could have bet the farm!  I was hoping that
we were in the beginning of a positive trend with last week's issue, but it
just didn't happen.  Oh well, there's always next week...

I know I've been rambling about the Internet and doing Atari web pages the
past few weeks.  It still remains a lot of fun.  I've been doing a lot of
"web surfing", checking out the various Atari support sites - there are
quite a few of them around and I haven't managed to view them all yet.

Most of these sites are extremely well done, and informative as well.  I
now have an opportunity to learn more about Atari products, the people who
created them, and the people who still use them - all over the world.  It's
not interactive as I'm used to seeing by calling somewhere like CompuServe,
Delphi, or the Usenet - but, it does serve a useful purpose.  And, it's
still fun.  If you haven't checked out any Atari web sites, I highly
recommend that you do, including mine.

I'm still updating my pages a little at a time.  It takes time, and
"research" to make sure that the links that I want to add are still
existent (I found one today that changed to a new address!).  I'm also
trying to make the pages look aesthetic without appearing gaudy or laced
with too many graphics - it just ties up the loading times.

I still haven't composed my request for additions of web addresses for
those of you who support Atari sites: BBS sites, user groups, dealers,
developers, etc.; but I do plan to get that put together and posted over
the weekend.  Some of you have already sent me the information and I've
begun to add those links - thanks!

So, if you haven't already done so, grab a copy of STiK/CAB and start doing
some browsing if you're able - it's a great addition to the Atari online

Until next time...

The Ad.Lib Message Base is Reborn!
From: Andy Curtis <>
Date: Thu, 20 Feb 1997 15:54:00

The Ad.Lib Message Base is Reborn!

Hi There!
Just a quick message to you crowd to let you know that Frank Charlton and
myself have reinstated the Ad.Lib Message Base on the Internet as an email
mailing list.

The idea is to get all the old daftness going just as you remember it. With
the sad passing of the BBS, this is a great way to translate some of the
old spirit onto the Internet. If you logged on in the past, you can join us
again through a simple mail list linkup. If you don't know what the heck
I'm on about, give it a try anyway!

Please spread this message as widely as possible to all you think might be
interested in order to make this a worthy forum for all matters, whether
they be Atari, Mac, PC or just plain silly. Anything goes, but keep the
language reasonably restrained.

The SysOps are, as ever, Andy Curtis and Frank Charlton.  :-)

To subscribe to the list, send an email to with the
following in your message body:

subscribe mbase [first name] [last name]
(in my case this was: subscribe mbase andy curtis)
Subject does not matter.

I look forward to hearing from you all and chatting!

Cheers for now,
Andy Curtis & Frank Charlton

                              Gaming Section

Video Game Sales!  MS Games?
ID4 Debuts!  And more...

Industry News STR Game Console NewsFile  -  The Latest Gaming News!

                       Video Games Post Brisk Sales

PORT WASHINGTON, N.Y., Feb. 18 (UPI) -- Sales of video games edged out
other computer entertainment software in 1996, accounting for 55 percent of
the industry's sales.   NPD Group, the leading  New York-based market
researcher, reports the introduction of the Nintendo 64 system in late
September and strong software sales for the Sony PlayStation and Sega
Saturn during the holidays helped video games  capture 60 percent of the
fourth-quarter market share.

NPD spokesman Ryan Brock said even with recent improvements in computer
gaming, such as 3D graphics,  faster processing and surround sound,
"consumers are still buying more games for console machines than for
computers."  According to NPD, the top five interactive entertainment
software publishers ranked by units  sold during 1996 were: Nintendo of
America, Electronic Arts, Sega of America, Acclaim and CUC  International.

Many of the top entertainment software companies hedged their bets by
publishing titles for both computers  and video game consoles in 1996.
Sixteen of the top 25 entertainment software manufacturers offered games
for both computers and consoles.   NPD tracks the interactive entertainment
software industry through two
retail point-of-sale tracking services.

               Get Ready For The 'ID4' Interactive Invasion

Fox Interactive
Day & Date PlayStation, Saturn & Windows(R) 95 CD-ROM Release Of
Independence Day: The Game
Up to $40 in Consumer Savings

LOS ANGELES, Calif., Feb. 19 /RNewswire/ -- Inspired by the #1 film and
video of 1996 and destined to chart new territories for film-inspired
interactive names, INDEPENDENCE DAY: THE GAME ('ID4') will simultaneously
invade retail outlets across North America for PlayStation, Saturn and
Windows(R)95  CD-ROM on March 11 from Fox Interactive.  Heralding this
arrival will be one of the industry's largest and  most comprehensive
marketing campaigns ever for a single title, which includes multiple
partners, consumer  savings of up to $40 and a dedicated, multi-million
dollar media campaign. Suggested retail price for  PlayStation and Sega is
$54.98, Windows(R) 95 CD-ROM is  $49.98.  All marketing and sales for Fox
interactive products is handled by Twentieth Century Fox Home

Hot off its phenomenal success with the multi-platform DieHard Trilogy
game, Fox Interactive delivers a  gaming experience for everyone.  Rated
K-A for all ages, 'ID4' is an arcade-style flying adventure that  brings
home all the fast-paced action and emotion of the blockbuster film, which
puts the player in the  ultimate race to save the world from an armada of
Aliens set to wipe out civilization.  Given the widespread appeal of 'ID4,'
this unprecedented slate of marketing muscle, which will deliver more than
350 million target audience impressions, will extend beyond the hardcore
"gamers" and well into the mainstream audience, similar to the theatrical
and video marketing campaigns.

"We've got a terrific immersive gaming experience based on the kind of
incredible property that game  developers dream about and retailers are
clamoring for," noted Jon Richmond, President of Fox Interactive.
"Accordingly, we've built one of the most comprehensive marketing campaigns
-- with six partners and millions of dollars -- that this industry has ever
seen for a single game release.  Together, we intend to be a major force in
the marketplace with 'ID4.'"

To excite consumers to get ready to "kick some alien butt," outlined below
are some specifies of the monstrous campaign tht has been built for the
'ID4' launch.  In addition to the activities listed below, both Sega and
Sony are mounting programs in support of their individual platforms
including special trailers at in-store PlayStation kiosks and sampler discs
bundled with Saturn units.

MARKETING AND PROMOTIONS: Trailers:  In a perfect blend of synergy and
target-audience  marketing, Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment placed
a compelling, 20-second feature film-style  trailer for the ID4 game at the
beginning of the INDEPENDENCE DAY home video, the best-selling video of
1996, which has shipped nearly 22 million copies to date.  The trailer can
also be seen on the recent sell-through video release of BROKEN ARROW,
which recently shipped more than 1 million copies and the Widescreen Series
edition of INDEPENDENCE DAY in March.

Dedicated Advertising:  With a multi-million dollar budget, beginning in
February, full-color print ads will run in national video trade and
consumer gaming enthusiast publications including EGM, PC GAMER and
GAMEPRO; national cable and top local market spot TV ads will begin in
March on MTV, FOX SPORTS NET, among many other outlets; on the Internet,
banner ads and contests will promote ID4 on popular video game sites such

Up to $40 in savings:  Consumers who purchase any version of 'ID4' will
find a 10-page coupon booklet  packed inside -- with offers of up to $40 in
consumer saving and other special offers.  Included in the $40  savings are
the following partners and promotions:

Orbitz(TM) Beverage: Clearly Canadian's new Orbitz(TM) Beverage will offer
a $10 mail-in rebate with the purchase of the ID4 game and ten bottles of
Orbitz (at 60,000 U.S. retail outlets from March 11 through May 15).  More
than 4 million custom-designed ID4 bottleneck tags and 2.4 million ID4
Orbitz(TM) bottle caps will provide details on the mail-in rebate.
Orbitz(TM) will also support the promotion with in-store signage including
static clings, cooler decals and mini-posters.  Cross promotions will also
run online through the and websites.

Samsung:  Consumers can receive a $25 mail-in rebate from Samsung with the
purchase of ID4 and the new GXTV (est. SRP $299), a color
television/monitor designed especially for video games.  Gamers everywhere
will be able to preview ID4 on special interactive GXTV kiosks, on display
at more than 70 Electronics Boutiques and over 200 FunCo's from late
February through March. Coupons for ID4 "Premium Packs" will also be
inserted in GXTV boxes, offering limited-edition ID4 T-shirts, hats and
Strategy Guides.

Twentieth Century Fox Pay Television:  Fox has also joined forces with
sister company TCF Pay TV and  more than 2,500 local cable operators and
satellite systems for a special offer in conjunction with the March  1
Pay-Per-View premiere of the INDEPENDENCE DAY film.  Cable subscribers who
order the film on  pay-per-view and purchase the ID4 video game are
eligible for a $10 mail-in rebate and can receive three  collectors' series
INDEPENDENCE DAY posters.  Local and regional media support includes direct
mail pieces, cross-channel cable spots, cable guide ads and radio spots and
promotions that should reach 35 million households in key cable markets
beginning in early February.

Planet Hollywood:  As part of the Pay-Per-View Promotion, an in-store
sweepstakes with 27 Planet  Hollywood locations will run in March and
April, including premium item giveaways and Sega Saturn interactive kiosks
featuring the game.  This promotion will be supported with radio
advertising and promotions as well as custom table tent cards in all Planet
Hollywood restaurants.

Strategy Guide and Game Discounts:  To make the invasion complete,
cross-sell for the upcoming ID4 Strategy Guide from Metropolis Publishing
and a coupon for $5 off Fox Interactive's three-in-one smash DIE HARD
TRILOGY game will also be included with each game.

On-Line Campaigns:  Visitors to will soon be able to
download screen shots, audio files and full-motion video from the game.
Exclusive contests will offer gainers the chance to win copies of the game,
ID4 T-shirts, caps and more.  Special previews and sneak peaks will also
take place at the site.  In addition, all Club Fox members with registered
email addresses will also receive a special email postcard containing
information about the 1D4 game and the rebates and promotions.

Microsoft Backs New Game Developer

In a move aimed to solidify its position as a leading games publisher,
Microsoft Corp.'s games group today  announced it has entered into a
long-term publishing agreement with Digital Anvil, an Austin, Texas-based
startup founded by game industry superstars Chris Roberts, Tony Zurovec and
Erin Roberts.  Microsoft says  the multi-title publishing deal includes a
significant minority investment by Microsoft and ensures that Digital
Anvil will work exclusively with Microsoft to produce cutting-edge games
for the PC and online platforms. The deal's terms weren't disclosed.

Digital Anvil is led by three former Electronic Arts designers who
collectively have received more than 50 industry awards for their
development efforts. Their Wing Commander and Crusader series have sold
approximately 1.4 million licensed copies in the United States alone.  "his
is a major coup for the Microsoft games group and is in line with our
strategy to establish long-term relationships with the best game developers
in the world," says Pete Higgins, group vice president of the interactive
media group at Microsoft. "Digital Anvil has assembled one of the
industry's most respected game-development teams, and we're excited to work
with them to create top-quality games that break new ground and deliver the
best PC games experiences."

"Microsoft has established itself as a leader in publishing quality
entertainment software, and its powerful worldwide distribution and
marketing systems will enable us to reach our global fan base," adds Chris
Roberts, Digital Anvil's CEO. "This agreement will supply us with the
necessary equity to boost our resources, and Microsoft's willingness to
invest in the development periods and budgets necessary to build
high-quality, groundbreaking products made them the ideal partner for
Digital Anvil among all of our publishing alternatives."

STR Editor's Mail Call    "...a place for the readers to be heard"

                             Editor's MailBag

                    Messages * NOT EDITED * for content

Subject:  Were is Battlespear? - Msg Number: 118972
From:  J Reynolds 73110,713
To:  Curt Vendel 75212,2071
Forum:  ATARIGAMING   Sec: 05-Lynx
Date:  20-Feb-97  1:45

Just ask yourself if any other person or company could have marketed the
Jaguar successfully.  3DO crashed  and burned even tho they were backed by
Panasonic, Goldstar and Electronic Arts to the tune of hundreds of
millions of dollars.   Stop and think.  These are the biggest hardware and
(gaming) software manufacturers in  the world. Sega couldn't sell a Jag
knockoff, the 32X, nor could Nintendo keep afloat their Virtual Boy either.

Next time you read anything from Steve Watkins, just ask yourself what he
contributed to the world versus  what the Tramiels founded and created:
Commodore, Mostek Semiconductor (developed 6502 CPU and  variations used in
millions upon millions of successful products), Vic20, C64,
520/1040/TT/Falcon, Jag64, etc.

Guys like Steve can give 2-bit opinions because that's just about the
magnitude of his acheivements relative  to the Tramiels.  I'm not a rabid
fan of how the Tramiels managed but I respect what they have accomplished
despite the heavy odds against companies trying to survive in the consumer
electronics marketplace.

Subject:  Were is Battlespear? - Msg Number: 118974
From:  Ralph @ STReport 70007,4454
To:  J Reynolds 73110,713
Forum:  ATARIGAMING   Sec: 05-Lynx
Date:  20-Feb-97  7:59

Mr. Reynolds...

     You have every right in the world to say your piece.  As do I, and...
I must say I have never seen  such a convoluted piece of diatribe aimed at
total misinformation than what you have just posted.  Truly before anything
is posted it would be wise and prudent to have the facts at one's disposal.
It has been the opinion of MANY people that the Tramiels torpedoed a wide
variety of the "efforts" of Atari Corp. for varied money manipulation

     Because Steve Watkins or, anyone else for that matter, expresses their
opinions gives you no right what-so- ever to attack them personally.  That
has been a blatant problem in the Atari community from day one.  The
fanatical blind loyalty has lead to more personal verbal assaults than that
of any other computer/gaming  platform.  Address the issues, attack the
thoughts but NOT the person.

     You may attack the premise of the Tramiels intentionally sinking the
Jaguar, Portfolio, STBook, and  any other number of high hyped no sale
products Atari came up with.  You may also compare JACK  Tramiel's track
record at Commodore to that of anyone.  But if you must, be sure to also
compare his track  record at Commodore while both HE and Commodore were
under investigation by the Canadian Securities  Commission.  Be certain to
included Jack's turning state's evidence against his buddies at the
original  Commodore over the "Don Mills Stock Affair" along with the fact
that if Irving Gould hadn't invested fresh,  big money into Commodore after
the Commission's Investigation penalty phase there would have been NO
Commodore.  Commodore was virtually an empty shell when the Commission was
done with Tramiel & Co.

     Trying to compare J. Tramiel to something wonderful and above reproach
is profoundly ridiculous.  Jack Tramiel (business is war) was a man-eating
businessman like no other seen in the last four decades.  His  temper
tantrums and screaming tirades are well known throughout the labor force in
all of Silicon Valley if  not beyond.  Other companies in the Valley, in
most cases, immediately hired anyone coming from Atari  Corp. especially if
they worked there for any length of time.  You see their premise was, if
you could work there successfully under the Tramiels, you had to be good.
His sons, Sam, Leonard and Garry, are truly the  rest of the Tramiel tragic
comedy act. They brought the family's business reputation to new and far
greater  heights of delirious amusement.  In fact, I would not be surprised
to see actual, "how not to" business and  investment study courses written
around their tragic but oh, so often comical activities.  Personally
speaking,  the Tramiels are truly very likable folks.  I especially liked
Leonard he is an amazing character. But... when it came to business, there
were no others like them. Probably never will be.

     Never, in the history of the computer business, has a private
ownership group made a small fortune so completely and expertly as they
did... out of a large fortune.  The Tramiels, in their infinite wisdom and
hardcore desire to do it their way, saw fit to buy Federated Stores when
they had Atari "on a roll".  They dropped over $500 million dollars to buy
Federated. All went into the toilet a few short years later with Federated
never coming out of the red under Garry's "steady guiding hand". Then there
was the component buying... in any given model or, model year.. one could
find five, six or perhaps ten or more different  manufacturers of a
particular component in use in their products.  Have you any idea why this
was?  Check with D & B and learn more truth. Truth is, everything they
touched after they had their initial success with the release of the 520st
turned sour.

      Ralph Mariano @ STReport International Online Magazine

 - CompuServe & Internet Explorer 3.01 - ISDN, Simply the best!
 - WebSprite!  Keeping up to date on the WEB is so EASY.
 - - EMail:

ONLINE WEEKLY STReport OnLine          The wires are a hummin'!

                           PEOPLE... ARE TALKING

 On CompuServe

Compiled by Joe Mirando

     Hidi ho friends and neighbors.  What a busy week I've had.  At my
place of business, we've just  undergone an audit for ISO 9002
certification.  This certification tells customers that we have established
procedures for every operation we do.  Everything from phone inquiries to
shipping is covered (and must be  to qualify for certification).   The down-
side is the paperwork!  Every procedure must be documented every  time it
is done.  The catch-phrase that fits ISO certification best is "Say what
you do, do what you say... and  PROVE it".  Heck, just when computers were
finally getting to the point where the "paperless office" was a
possibility, something comes along to bring in more paperwork!  I think
this is a plot concocted by the paper  manufacturers.  <snicker, snicker>
We have met all the requirements necessary, so it looks like we'll be
getting our ISO certification in the mail in the next month or so.

     The reason I'm telling you this is that, with all of this going on,
I've had little time to answer email and have  the conversations that I've
gotten used to with my computer acquaintances.  Now that the audit is over,
I  hope to be back to normal in a week or so.  I'm one of the two people
working on getting review copies of  the two commercial web-browsing
packages coming out shortly, and we hope to be able to have reviews  ready
for you to read shortly after the products become available.  We'll keep
you posted as to the status of  these products and the reviews, so look
here for info as it becomes available... We now return you to your
regularly scheduled program. <grin>

                      From the Atari Computing Forums

Michael Robillard asks for help with MiNT:
"When I run Mint I end up with all lowercase filenames and when I try to
run a .prg I get the alert about  show-print-cancel.Every file becomes a
text file.  Any Idea what I may be doing wrong?"

Albert Dayes tells Michael:
"[That is] probably because MINT is more or less based on Unix style
filenames which are case sensitive  unlike TOS/MS-DOS. You might try
renaming (or making a copy of) the files to all uppercase filenames and
see if that works."

When Philippe Bogdan asks about a 25 MHz Stacy that he saw for sale, he
wondered if this could really be true.  I tell him:
"[I'm] sorry to disappoint you, but FASTtech is no longer in business.
when the Atari market went bad FASTtech stopped making product.

There may well be others with these accelerators that might sell them, but
I doubt that many would want to part with something that special... I know,
I've looked for one too.  You are quite correct that the STacy is  ideal
for music.  I still use my 8 MHz STacy quite often and like it a lot.  As
you said, the speed is the
only drawback."

Philippe tells me that it's...
"To bad I didn't know about FASTTech a few years ago... <frown>  To be
honest, for most of my work (as a professional arranger) the speed is OK.
It's only when I starting  dealing with score, then it's really too slow.
I will look for this accelerator though and eventually may try  get a
second hand Mega STe or TT sometime.  I'm only using the STACY for music. I
work on a Mac for  the rest. I've considered switching to Cubase Mac but
I'm so used to and like the ATARI interface that I  decided to stick with
it <smile> Also, changing computers would mean spending quite a fair amount
of money in software and harDware."

Our friend and neighbor Simon Churchill adds:
"If you want an accelerator card then you might like to consider a T28,
system solution's say they can put  one into a stacy.    You might like to
contact them and ask if it's possable etc.    They are on the WWW.    I
left there address in another post, the old grey matter's not what it was.
8-)  Another thought has come to  me, (Dam grey matter!!)   Have you tried
a software accelerator?  NVDI is very good.    With a T28 and  NVDI running
you can get a graphic's report of 1000%+ and a CPU of 330%+ from Gembench

Gary Partington posts:
"Can anyone please advise me as to what printer I should buy for my Atari
STe I would like an ink jet but  obviously the driver has to be available.
I have been told the HP deskjet 500 is good but are there more than  one
type of 500 or not?  I need it for use with Timeworks or the like. All
advice appreciated."

Good ol' Brian Gockley of the A-CT Atari Group tells Gary:
"Your are dead right to go with the HP DeskJet. You can get almsot any
version, as _as far as I know_ they  are backwardly compatible. We are
going to try out the Office Jet, which will double as a fax

Gary asks Brian:
"Do you mean I can buy a brand new Deskjet and a driver for one will be OK
for another?"

Brian replies:
"I have used DJ 500 drivers with the 550c and it worked fine. It is
_supposed_ to be backward compatible."

Simon Churchill adds:
"I know some of the first HP 500's had problem's with talking to the ST and
that meant you had to turn them  on in a certain order.   However I have a
HP 520 and am very pleased with it, driver's are very easy to find for most
packages as you can use laserjet driver's.  I use First word +, Write on,
Timework's DTP 2.04  with SpeedoGdos and many other packages as well as
GDOS graphic packages,  all print fine. If you need a  driver call in the
forum and someone can normally point you in the right direction."

Gary also posts:
"I have a problem with my keyboard - it keeps making quiet little sizzling
noises but nothing happens and it  goes away after a few seconds.  Has
anyone come across this problem and does it mean something is about
to give up?  Atari STe by the way."

Simon Churchill asks Gary:
"Is it the Keyboard sizzling or is it the ST itself?  The keyboard sits
above part of the motherboard and the  sound may be coming from under the

Curt Vendel asks for info on video cards for the TT:
"I'm getting ready to buy a TT030 and would like to install a video adapter
into the 1/2 VME slot in the unit,  can anyone recommend a good adapter and
does anyone know where I can find one these days besides  TOAD (They are
way too overpriced)."

Joe Villarreal tells Curt:
"I am using a Nova Vme Plus graphics card on my TT.  It's a true color card
that displays 2, 256, 32,000,  and 16 million colors in different
resolutions starting from 320x200 to 848x640.  I use the 640x480 256 color
display most of the time.  The Nova is a German made card.  I believe the
North America distributor is Homa Systems in Canada; I saw an ad from them
in an issue of Current Notes.  The Nova installs in the vme  slot of the TT
and Mega Ste.  The vme part has a cable that connects to a black box
outside the computer that
contains the actual video card."

James Spielman jumps in and asks Joe:
"I have a Mega ST2 (not an STE) that has a relatively large slot in the
middle of the board.  Is this the VME  slot you mention?  Could this
machine take a Nova card?"

Albert Dayes tells James:
"That is the Mega-bus slot which is not compatible with the VME type slots.
There were only a few  products that work with the Mega-bus slot as far as
I remember."

Brian Gockley tells James:
"The Nova is sold in two versions, Mega bus and VME bus. You need the Mega
bus.  Most cards come in  both flavors - if you can still find them..."

     Well folks, that's about it for this time around.  Tune in again next
week... same time, same station,  and be ready to listen to what they are
saying when...

                            PEOPLE ARE TALKING

                            EDITORIAL  QUICKIES

     Reviewing is no easy matter. To begin with, you must be sure that
         writing is your vocation, next you must be convinced that
     reviewing is not writing, hence the conclusion that your vocation
     is not reviewing. Well, once you feel that way, you can begin...
                  STReport International OnLine Magazine
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All Items quoted, in whole or in part, are done so under the provisions  of
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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
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contributors are not and cannot be held responsible in any way for the  use
or   misuse  of  information  contained  herein  or  the  results  obtained

       STReport  "YOUR INDEPENDENT NEWS SOURCE"   February 21, 1997
      Since 1987  Copyrightc1997 All Rights Reserved   Issue No. 1308

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