Z*Magazine: 27-Jun-86 Special Issue

From: Atari SIG (xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 07/03/93-08:30:19 PM Z

From: xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Atari SIG)
Subject: Z*Magazine: 27-Jun-86 Special Issue
Date: Sat Jul  3 20:30:19 1993

ATARI NEWS   JUNE 27, 1986
Ron Kovacs-Editor  Middlesex, NJ 
Xx  News From Atari Corp


     As if the Summer wasn't hot
enough, Atari has launched three
computer promotions designed to
make things even hotter.

    For the 520ST, we are offering
a free monochrome monitor when you
purchase a 520ST cpu and one SF354
disk drive.  We expect to see a
variety of promotions based on this
one.  A complete monochrome system
for $499 is one good attraction, as
is the 520ST for $199 with purchase
of drive and monitor.

    For the 8-bit computers we have
two promotions.  We have added some
software to spice up the 65XE
package.  The position of this
promotion is as an advanced game
machine, and we are bundling 4
software cartridges and a joystick
with the 65XE CPU.  The packages
are: Star Raiders, Pac Man, Donkey
Kong, and Sky Writer.  This is an
$85 value of free products with an
under-$100 computer!  We expect
this to be a great attraction as
the video game market heats up
again this year.

    The second 8-bit promotion is
our continuing 130XE package deal. 
Get a 130XE with a disk drive and a
printer, plus the AtariWriter Plus
word processing program and four
other software titles (Music
Composer, Star Raiders, Defender,
and Home Filing Manager), for only
$399.  A version of this package
with the 65XE in place of the 130XE
is also available at a $349 list

CES REPORT: Atari Sparking PC Comeback

     Atari's leadership in the
comeback for personal computers was
apparent than at the recent
Consumer Electronics Show in

     Although computer products
were in a section of the show floor
that is not exactly prime territory
Atari's booth attracted huge crowds
throughout the show.  The feeling
was more upbeat than it has been
for several years.  There were more
exhibitors and attendees than in
the past few CE Shows.  A strong
sign of Atari's role in the
comeback was the presense of Atari
computers in virtually every booth
in the computer section.

     Atari had the biggest and most
prominent booth in the computer
section. The entrance was flanked
by two special displays: "See the
Power of Atari" featuring video
digitizers, and "Hear the Power of
Atari" with music synthesizers. 
These exhibits were divided evenly
into 8-bit and ST products.

     Within the booth 36 tables
were set aside for third party
software developers.  Again, half
the displays were for XE products
and the other half were for ST.
Atari was careful to emphasize both
sides of our computer product lines
in a show of overall strength and
support.  Despite the predominance
of publicity for the ST line, the
XE computers are still alive and
doing well.

     The move toward added presence
of the 8-bit products proved to be
well timed, thanks to Atari's
biggest competitor in this market. 
Commodore was present in only a
small way, with a room tucked far
away from the main floor.  A few
visitors were able to see company
personnel trying to generate some
enthusiasm for their latest attempt
to generate corporate revenue --
the "64C" computer.  This
repackaging of the venerable
Commodore 64 managed to add little
in the way of utility, simply
adding  a new disk of software
along with a new case design.  For
this they have raised the suggested
price to $200.

     There did seem to be some
enthusiasm among mass merchants,
all right.  Most of them paid quick
visits to the Atari booth to talk
business.  It looks like Commodore
is trying to replace the 64 with
the XE.  Thanks, guys!

     Back to the Atari world, many
of the software vendors at CES had
new announcements of products. 
Batteries Included has announced a
wide range of ST titles in the
productivity category, including
Thunder!, their realtime spelling
checker; I*S Talk, a terminal
program with a slew of features
(also including spelling checker);
DEGAS Elite, an enhanced version of
their top-selling title; PaperClip
Elite, an advanced wordprocessor;
HomePack ST, an enhanced version of
their 8-bit best seller; and more,
bringing their product line to an
even dozen ST titles by year's end.
MicroProse had Silas Warner, the
author of many top-selling computer
games like Castle Wolfenstein and
Robotwars, demonstrating a
beautiful version of his new Silent
Service for the ST.  Baudville,
Epyx, Firebird, and Strategic
Simulations were some of the
software companies showing ST
titles for the first time in their
booths.  Many other vendors
announced expanded support of all
Atari products at the show (or
immediately after).

     Atari was also helped  by two
user groups in the area, the
Chicagoland Atari User Group
(CLAUG) and the Suburban Chicago
Atarians (SCAT).  A word of advice
to dealers -- don't underestimate
the ability of user groups in your
area!  They  have often shown they
are willing and able to come to the
aid of Atarians.  Atari is proud to
have such a devoted collection of
users.  Thanks, folks!


     A small company in the
Pittsburgh area is now selling ST
monitor cables and connectors. 
Many customers have asked us for
these cables for connecting 520ST's
(with modulators) to video cassette
recorders.  Now it is possible.

     You can get just the
connectors for wiring your own
cables, or you can buy cables with
RCA plugs or with ST monitor plugs
(for use as replacements or for
longer cables), or they will make
special customized cables for you.
 Contact At Your Service, 2856
Leechburg Road, Lower Burrell, PA
15068, Attn: Mark Spires, or call


     The newest release from Atari
this month is DB Master One, an
enhanced and improved version from
the one given away as part of a
promotion last Christmas.  We think
you'll be impressed.  This package
is available now in inventory from

     Brand new in Atari's line of
products is dbMan, the database
from Versasoft.  Atari has picked
up the marketing rights to this
product.  It is available for
immediate shipment.  Just to
refresh you, this package is a
dBase III clone with many extra
features.  Later in this issue we
talk about some of the ways we're
using databases in our own
operations here at Atari

     For the 8-bit computers, we
want to remind you that the Atari
Planetarium and Star Raiders II are
also available in current
inventory.  Both of these titles
have been very well received at the
recent CES and Comdex shows, as
well as in favorable reviews in
upcoming issues of computer


     Aside from the flood of
announcements at Comdex and CES,
many other companies have jumped on
the Atari bandwagon lately.  It's
nice to have momentum!

     Baudville Inc. has three new
titles of home and educational
software: Video Vegas (blackjack,
poker, slots, and keno), Guitar
Wizard (teaches guitar playing),
and Ted Bear's Rainy Day Games for
young people.  These products are
available for the 8-bit Atari
computers.  Their phone number is

     Epyx has released new products
for the 8-bit and the ST lines. 
World Karate Championship for the
8-bitters is a realistic graphic
animation of the martial arts.  For
the ST, Epyx is shipping Rogue and
their revamped Temple of Apshai
Trilogy.  Epyx plans to release
Winter Games, World Games, Super
Cycle, and Championship Wrestling
for the ST series as well.

     Polarware/Penguin Software has
released Oo-Topos for the ST. 
Polarware has drastically cut
prices on their software titles to
make them even more attractive to
the public -- currently they are
selling most games at a $19.95 list

     Strategic Simulations (SSI)
has released Gettysburg: The
Turning Point for the 8-bit Atari
computers.  At CES they were
showing off preliminary versions of
Phantasie for the ST, scheduled for
release in late Summer.

     For the 8-bit products,
Batteries Included is shipping
Paper Clip with Spell Check, a word
processor with integrated


     The latest highlights in the
ST software world are some very
powerful desk accessories.  These
programs stay resident in memory
and provide features that can be
used at any time by programs which
take advantage of the GEM

     From Michtron, we have
Cornerman.  This program is much
more powerful than the acclaimed
Sidekick package for the PC.  It
includes features like: a full
ASCII chart in a scrolling window;
a calculator with decimal, hex,
binary, and octal functions; a note
pad; a phone dialer; a clock (which
appears in the upper right corner
of any GEM screen); and many more. 
Cornerman is probably most suited
for a 1040ST, since it uses up
quite a bit of RAM, but it has
quickly found itself to be
indispensible in my ST.

     A recent arrival here will
probably give Cornerman a run for
its money.  Macro Manager from Blue
Moon Software (distributed by
Shanner International) is a very
complete accessory.  It's
calculator works in algebraic or
reverse polish notation and also
includes financial functions.  It
also contains a weekly planner with
project time reporting; electronic
card file database; alarm clock
calendar; and an electronic
typewriter feature.

     One of the most necessary
products is the latest from
Batteries Included, called Thunder
(a poke at Turbo Lightning?). 
Thunder is a realtime spelling
checker for GEM applications. 
While you are typing, it checks
your spelling and rings the bell if
you make an error.  By clicking on
the desk accessory menu, it will
tell you what word was wrong and
offers you a choice of corrections.
Thunder comes  with a 50,000 word
dictionary.  It is expandable to 2
more dictionaries, one with
supplemental words and the other
with replacement words -- you give
it a word and an automatic
replacement, for words you commonly
misspell and for abbreviations
which are automatically expanded
for you.


     Did you know that there are
more than 200 public domain
programs for the ST available from
a central source, not to mention
the more than 100 ST pictures and
100 8-bit programs?  If you were
signing into the Atari Corp. BBS
regularly, you'd know this and a
lot more.  The Atari Base is the
official BBS of Atari Corp. located
at headquarters in Sunnyvale. 
You can also get any questions you
have answered by our staff experts.
There is a private section for
dealers and for service centers as

     Speaking of service centers,
Randy Hain, Atari's manager of
service, will be getting active in
the Atari BBS as well to provide
up-to-the-minute information to
registered service centers.  So
make sure you're tuned in to
Atari's own information exchange.

     The Atari Base BBS can be
reached by any computer with modem
by calling 408-745-5308, any time
any day, 300 or 1200 baud.


     One of the strongest uses for
a computer is to manage your data. 
Recently there have been several
strong software titles for the
Atari ST computers in this category
Two of these, DB Master One and
dbMan, have found their way into
many different departments here at
Atari.  We thought we'd share our

     Sam Tramiel's secretary uses
DB Master One to manage his
business cards.  As the president
of Atari, Sam meets a multitude of
people.  Rather than deal with an
unweildy pile of cards, he has them
typed into this program.  When he
needs to contact someone, the
information is available almost
instantly.  This particular ST is
equipped with a monochrome monitor
to take advantage of the very high
resolution, displaying 50 lines of
information on the screen at a time

     In the service department,
Randy Hain also uses DB Master One.
He keeps track of service centers
and applicants.  He has created
many custom report formats for his
own use and for use by others in
the company.  For example, when the
customer relations department asked
for a list of all service centers
with complete addresses so
customers can be referred to them,
he quickly changed one of the
existing reports to create the
customized one that was needed.

     Both of these departments
started using DB Master One with
its original release last Winter.
Since then, they passed reports of
problems and requests for
additional features back to the
program's designers.  Most of their
requests were implemented in the
latest release which has just
become available to you.

     For more sophisticated data
management tasks, we are making
extensive use of dbMan.  With the
features of dBase III, we have
drawn on the experience of people
in the company to create very
complete applications.

     The customer relations
department is using the ST for
order processing. They process a
tremendous number of requests for
manuals, spare parts, and other
items.  Instead of typing and
filing and manual report
generation, the entire process of
order entry and reporting is
automated.  The inventory items and
their descriptions are in one file,
open orders are in another, and
sales tax for the state in a third.
Orders go through the system faster
and more accurately than ever. 
Because dbMan is a true relational
database, more files can be added
as the department learns how this
program can help them even more. 
We don't just start with the
solution, it grows as we think of
more ways it can help us.

     Likewise, the finance
department uses dbMan to store and
track outstanding loaner systems to
members of the press and others. 
Each system can be tracked so we
always know what our outstanding
inventory is, which machines are
overdue, and who within Atari is
responsible for each computer sent.
This information was impossible to
maintain with the older manual

     As time goes by we are finding
more and more ST's cropping up
within our own company.  Along with
the applications mentioned here
already, we find them used by
secretaries for word processing, by
the controller and other finance
people as spreadsheets, by the data
processing department as terminals,
and of course by the programmers as
development tools.  It may seem
obvious that Atari would use its
own computers, but there were
once many IBM PC's and
DisplayWriters and Wang systems
here to do the same jobs that are
now being done better by our own
inexpensive ST systems.  Our
Chairman makes us all work our
hardest and save every penny we can
-- the ST is part of the way we do
our jobs.

Zmagazine Special Issue June 27,th
Atari Computer News

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