Z*Magazine: 7-Aug-87 #65

From: Atari SIG (xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 07/17/93-08:25:52 AM Z

From: xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Atari SIG)
Subject: Z*Magazine:  7-Aug-87 #65
Date: Sat Jul 17 08:25:52 1993

ZMAGAZINE 65  ///////////////////////
August 7, 1987  (c)1987 Syndicate
Publisher/Editor: Ron Kovacs
Assistants: Ken Kirchner
            Susan Perry
            Rich Decowski

From CompuServe Online Today

Atari Corp. profits are up 39.3
percent and sales are up 16.4 percent
in the second quarter.

According to The Associated Press,
this puts the Sunnyvale, Calif.,
computer maker's net income for the
quarter at $13.5 million, or 23 cents
a share, compared to $9.7 million, or
22 cents a share on fewer outstanding
shares, a year earlier.

The wire service says sales for the
quarter were $70.7 million compared
to $60.7 million for the same quarter
last year.

Looking, then, at the first six
months of this year, net income for
Atari was $28.8 million compared to
$12.4 million, an increase of 132
percent. Sales for the first half
were $135.8 million compared to
$105.6 million for the same period
last year, an increase of 28.6
percent.  --Charles Bowen

Atari's new Mega ST computer has been
released for sale in Germany and
Switzerland.  The 2 Mb version of the
Mega ST is selling for 3,000 Swiss
Francs -- about $2,000 US -- and the
4 Mb model is an additional 400 Swiss
Francs ($270).  This confirmed
comments made last month by an Atari
executive that release of the new
model was imminent.

The Swiss model was released without
a "blitter", a newly developed
coprocessor chip that acts as a
high-speed memory manager.  Among
other tasks, the blitter is expected
to control animation and screen
graphics. Some US observers were
disappointed that the first machines
were manufactured without the
coprocessor but Neil Harris, Atari's
director of marketing communications,
said that he expects US machines to
include the blitter.

Commenting on why the Mega ST showed
up in Switzerland before the US,
Harris told OLT that, "We tend to
give first shipments to areas which
are being most successful. Right now,
the German market is the hottest ST
market for us. Since Switzerland is a
German-speaking nation, they also
received some."

John Feagans, who is working on
keyboard development for Atari, told
OLT that he had been working with a
blitter-equipped ST for more than a
month.  He also said that blitters
for all STs will be available and
that "there will be a place to put
it."  Some potential buyers had been
concerned that a socket for the
coprocessor would not be assembled
into US versions of the ST.

US release of the Atari Mega ST2 and
Mega ST4 is anticipated for
September. --James Moran
I would like to start off this week's
column with a special anouncement to
ZMAG readers.  Read the entire column
for a special limited time coupon for
ZMAG readers only!

Our first question this week comes
from Scott Lampert of Smithtown, NY.
Scott sent a short note with his
order for the Oasis.

Scott's question was will the Oasis
function properly with the ATR8000
interface using the AT_RS232.COM
handler that comes with SpartaDOS?

The answer Scott is simply NO. There
is a problem with using that
particular handler which will cause a
user to be logged off the system
whenever his e-mail is checked.
Therefore we supply a Public Domain
ATR RS232.COM file on the disk for
those of you who are using the
ATR8000.  This handler has been used
on many Oasis boards using the ATR
and has been found to be extremely
reliable so please use it.

Our next problem of note this week is
one which we discovered quite by
accident and one which had not
appeared before that I know of.  It
happened on Ron's own ZMAG board. For
some strange reason the system would
lock up whenever someone tried to
either leave e-mail or reply to
e-mail.  I had several conversations
with Ron on the problem trying to
make sure he had the system
configured properly.  He did!

I got the setup he was using on his
board and placed it on my backup
system exactly the way Ron was using
it on his system.  It took a while,
but I was able to duplicate the
problem.  As of yet there has not
been any fix done to the actual BBS
code itself, but here is the problem
and the simple fix for you if you
experience it.

Ron's e-mail base and password files
were both on drive 3.  He is using
one of the older Supra's with the old
ROM chip in the interface which only
allows for a fake floppy drive 1 and
a BIG drive 3.  The fix was to move
them from the hard disk to ramdisk on
drive 5 <the only reason I had him
put them on drive 5 was because when
I checked it out on my backup system
that is what I had it set at.>.  It
cured the problem.  When time permits
I will check into it further, but
there does not appear to be any
problem with this on any other drive
number. Sort of weird to say the

Also for those of you with the older
Supra 10 meg drives, Supra does have
a new ROM chip for the interface
which will allow you to configure
your hard drive to drives 1, 3 and 4
which can save you a lot of trouble
if you have a hard disk crash.
Instead of having to reformat and
restoring the entire drive 3 which is
something like 38,000 you would only
have to format and restore half the

My last bit of information this week
is a somewhat undocumented feature of
Oasis.  It is truely a SysOp friendly
feature.  As a SysOp I am sure you
get tired of users posting messages
in the WRONG message base.  Oasis has
a message copy function that will
allow you to move the message from
one base to another.  It is the "W"
command.  If you wish to move a
message after you have read all the
messages in a given base, go back to
the message you want to move.  Then
hit the "W" and you will get the  To:
prompt. Either type in the name or
just hit RETURN.  You will then be
propted to enter the Subject: line
of the message, after this is entered
the BBS will then print a list of
your message bases, just hit the
corresponding number of the base and
Oasis will copy that message over to
the correct base.

This "W" function is extremely handy
for SysOps who use a message base to
describe their new download files. If
you enter as follows:


with the "n" being the drive number
in the subject line, when a user
finds a file he wants to download he
would only need hit the Q command
from the message base to download the
file without having to look thru all
your downloads to find it.  It allows
you to copy that upload message you
had send to e-mail out o the message
base you need it in and save you
re-typing a description of the upload
file, as well as giving your user
credit for the upload.

Now for that special offer mentioned
at the beginning of this article.

*           ZMAG COUPON             *
*        for ZMAG readers!          *
*                                  *
*  With this coupon you can order   *
*   the Oasis BBS System which      *
*  usually sells for $15.00 for     *
*              only                 *
*             $10.00                *
*                                   *
*  All orders must be post marked   *
*  no later than August 15, 1987.   *
*      Send your check to:          *
*          Leo Newman               *
*   3900 N Woodlawn  #17 Chisholm   *
*       Wichita, KS 67220           *
* A printed copy of this coupon is  *
*  necessary to receive the ZMAG    *
*   limited time special price.     *

Now how is that for a deal to you
ZMAG readers.  If you are a SysOp now
is your time to act, this is a one
time offer thru ZMAG only!

If you have any questions about the
Oasis BBS system call (316)-683-7514
a 24 hour BBS at 3/12/2400 baud and
leave a message to the SysOp, or

Leo Newman
3900 N Woodlawn #17 Chisholm
Wichita, KS 67220

Your answer or reply will appear in
the next Zmag issue.  Until next
      ...By Mike Brown...
Welcome to another edition of the
User Group Focus. I am still winging
it, as I have yet to have anyone
submit data on their user group for
Focus. What a perfect way to reach a
HUGE potential number of members!
Send those newsletters and data
sheets in right away! The address is:

  Z-Mag User Group Focus
  Mike Brown
  268 E. Fourth Street
  Box 32
  Ashland, OH 44805.

Or you can upload text files of user
group data to:

The Balloon Works
(419) 289-8392 300/1200     24hrs.

One more thing and then I will get on
wih biz. I want to apologize to all
of the EXPRESS BBS SYSOPS that carry
Z-Mag. I forgot that EXPRESS does
funny things with the "and" sign.
Bearing this fact in mind, I promise
to never, ever submit an article with
"and" signs in it again!! (boy, is my
face red).

I know that some people will claim
favoritism, but this FOCUS is on a
user group that has many blood and
sweat stains on it of my own making.

A little over two years ago, a half-
dozen persons that had never seen or
spoken with each other (in the
conventional sense) before, met at a
semi-sleazy bar in Ashland, Ohio. The
group had communicated before by
E-mail and by the various BBS systems
in the area. Why were they making the
step to face-to-face meetings? They
had all agreed that there was a
un-met need for guidance and support
for the Atari Computer users in the
Central Ohio area, and wanted to
discuss the possibility of doing
something about it.

Unknown to them, in the same general
area and at the same time, there
already was a small group of Atari
diehards that had been meeting in
each others homes to exchange
information and tips; The North
Central-Ohio 6502 Computer Users
Group (NCSCUG) headed by Chuck

In a few weeks the efforts of all
would give way to what would become a
consolidation of the various special
interest Atari user groups in the
area, the Mid-Ohio Atari Computer
Users Group was born.

A local manufacturer, Gorman-Rupp
Pump Company, offered the use of
their facilities for a meeting place
for the fledgling group, and the
generous donations of individuals and
local businesses covered the copying
costs of the newsletter for the first
few issues. Dave Cress, the first
newsletter editor, established a
tradition of high-quality club
newsletters that continues today.

It soon became apparent that more
than the modest club dues would be
needed to produce the newsletter if
the cost of copies and postage was
taken into account. After a fair
amount of discussion, it was decided
that two events would be held to
raise funds for the support of the
club: A raffle ($.25 a chance) would
be held at meetings in the summer
months to help boost attendance and
raie money, and that a $1 per ticket
"LOTTO" would be offered to the
public with a grand prize of a brand
new Atari 800XL computer system!

Both events were a smashing success,
and managed to net enough profit to
not only put the newsletter on sound
footing, but to allow the club to
purchase a 256KXL, A USD enhanced
1050 Disk, and a video monitor to be
used for presenting demos at club
functions. Fortunately, this year,
Frey Scientific Company (a major
educational supply company) has
sponsored our need for inexpensive
duplication services for the club.

During that first year, a
constitution was drawn up and
approved by the membership. This
document clearly defines the
responsibilities of the club officers
and the obligations of MAUG to its

The other milestones achieved by MAUG
were the establishment of a user
support BBS, and a public domain
software library for the use of its
memership. MAUG conducted a series
of "new user" special interest
meetings in cooperation with a local
school district that is a heavy user
of Atari 8-bit computers. Because of
this involvement, MAUG was invited to
demo at the first annual Richland
County Educational Computer Fair held
at the Mansfield branch of the Ohio
State University. Several local
teachers were amazed at the
educational potential of the 8-bit
line and the LOGO learning language.
Member/educator Cathy Buscher's
"Radio Controlled" LOGO turtle caught
even the attention of nearby IBM and
Computerland exhibitors! While Dave
Cress wowed the children in
attendance with computer "snapshots"
from Computereyes ST.

After a wild spurt of explosive
growth, MAUG has of late been losing
membership and member support. I hope
that this is merely due to a settling
in process and a result of the usual
downturn in hobbyist computing during
the summer months.

If you live in the central Ohio area
and would like to learn more about
what MAUG has to offer, contact them
at this address:

Mid-Ohio Atari User Group
P.O. Box 1324
Mansfield, Ohio 44901

or call the BBS at:

(419) 529-5197 (300/1200)

__________MAUG Data Sheet:___________

Meetings Held at: Gorman-Rupp Company
                  305 Bowman St.
                  Mansfield, OH


President______________Mike Brown
Treasurer______________Dave Cress
Secretary/Librarian____Doug Roberts 
Newsletter Editor______Bill Cleveland

Your comments on this feature are
Permission is granted to reprint only
if the following copyright and credit
is given.

(c) 1987 Leo Newman/ZMAG

Hey all!  What another article from
me in the same issue of ZMAG?  This
one is just for chuckles, I hope you
enjoy it.  No doubt you have figured
out by now that I do not make a
living off the Oasis BBS System!  So
what does Leo Newman do for a living,
well folks I am one of those guys all
the TV shows make fun of.  Have you
ever wanted to spend a nice boring
evening at home, then call an
insurance agent out to your house. 
Well that's how I make my living, I
am and have been an insurance agent
for the past 14 years.

The following are actual statements
that have been collected over those
many years.  They are statements
found on actual insurance claim forms
where car drivers had attempted to
summarize the details of an auto
accident in the fewest words
possible.  The instance of faulty
writing serve to confirm that even
imcompetent writing may be highly
humorous.  I hope you enjoy.

Coming home, I drove into the wrong
house and collided with a tree I
don't have.

The other car collided with mine
without giving warning of its

I thought my window was down, but I
found out it was up when I put my
head through it.

I collided with a stopped truck
coming the other way.

A truck backed thru my windshield
into my wife's face.

The guy was all over the road.  I had
to swerve a number of times before I
hit him.

I pulled away from the side of the
road, glanced at my mother-in-law and
headed over the embankment.

In my attempt to kill a fly, I drove
into a telephone pole.

I had been shopping for plants all
day and was on my way home.  As I
reached an intersection, a hedge
sprang up, obscuring my vision and I
didn't see the car.

I was on my way to the Doctor with
rear end trouble when my universal
joint gave way, causing me to have an

My car was legally parked, as it
backed into the other auto.

I had been driving for 40 years when
I fell asleep at the wheel and had an

The pedestrian had no idea which
direction to run, so I ran over him.

A pedestrian hit me and went under my

I was sure the old fellow would never
make it to the other side of he road
when I struck him.

I saw a slow moving, sad faced old
gentleman, as he bounced off the roof
of my car.

An invisible car came out of nowhere,
struck my car, and vanished.

I told the police I was not injured,
but on removing my hat, I found that
I had a fractured skull.

The indirect cause of the accident
was a little guy with a big mouth.

I was thrown from my car as it left
the road.  I was found in a ditch by
some stray cows.

To avoid hitting the bumper of the
car in front, I struck the

The telephone pole was approaching, I
was attempting to swerve out of its
way, when it struck the front end.

As I approached the intersection, a
sign suddenly appeared in a place
where no stop sign ever appeared
before.  I was unable to stop in time
to avoid the accident.

[Ed... Thanks Leo, What I am gonna
say in the future??]
From The KB8CI Amateur Radio Packet
Bulletin Board System in Cleveland:

Programming Language

The following is a reprint of a
humorous article I came across

Selecting a Programming Language Made
Easy By Daniel Salomon & David
Rosenblueth; Department of Computer
Science;University of Waterloo;
Waterloo, Ontario, Canada  N2L 3G1

With such a large selection of
programming languages it can be
difficult to choose one for a
particular project.  Reading the
manuals to evaluate the languages is
a time consuming process.  On the
other hand, most people already have
a fairly good idea of how various
automobiles compare.  So in order to
assist those trying to choose a
language, we have prepared a chart
that matches programming languages
with comparable automobiles.

Assembler - A Formula 1 race car.
Very fast, but difficult to drive and
expensive to maintain.

FORTRAN II - A Model T Ford.  Once it
was king of the road.

FORTRAN IV - A Model A Ford.

FORTRAN 77 - A six-cylinder Ford
Fairlane with standard transmission
and no seat belts.

COBOL - A delivery van.  It's bulky
and ugly, but it does the work.

BASIC - A second-hand Rambler with a
rebuilt engine and patched
upholstery. Your dad bought it for
you to learn to drive.  You'll ditch
the car as soon as you can afford a
new one.

PL/1 - A Cadillac convertible with
automatic transmission, a two-tone
paint job, white-wall tires, chrome
exhaust pipes, and fuzzy dice hanging
in the windshield.

C - A black Firebird, the all-macho
car.  Comes with optional seat belts
(lint) and optional fuzz buster
(escape to assembler).

ALGOL 60 - An Austin Mini.  Boy,
that's a small car!

Pascal - A Volkswagen Beetle.  It's
small but sturdy.  Was once popular
with intellectuals.

Modula II - A Volkswagen Rabbit with
a trailer hitch.

ALGOL 68 - An Aston Martin.  An
impressive car, but not just anyone
can drive it.

LISP - An electric car.  It's simple
but slow.  Seat belts are not

PROLOG/LUCID - Prototype concept-

Maple/MACSYMA - All-terrain vehicles.

FORTH - A go-cart.

LOGO - A kiddie's replica of a Rolls
Royce.  Comes with a real engine and
a working horn.

APL - A double-decker bus.  It takes
rows and columns of passengers to the
same place all at the same time. But,
it drives only in reverse gear, and
is instrumented in Greek.

Ada - An army-green Mercedes-Benz
staff car.  Power steering, power
brakes and automatic transmission are
all standard.  No other colors or
options are available.  If it's good
enough for the generals, it's good
enough for you. Manufacturing delays
due to difficulties reading the
design specifications are starting to
clear up.
In the update department, I would 
like to announce that we have added
Ralph Walden to the Zmag staff. Mr.
Walden will be doing articles on "C".

This new column will debut within a
few weeks.

Here is our current staff:

Ron Kovacs  Publisher/Editor in Chief
Ken Kirchner      Assistant Publisher
Susan Perry       Assistant Publisher
Rich Decowski     Assistant Publisher
Bill Shefski              Copy Editor
Mike Brown          User Group Editor
Leo Newman    Special Features Editor
Calamity Jane               Columnist
Ralph Walden                Columnist
Larry Mihalik               Columnist
G.S. Halden             Legal Advisor
COMMENTARY  By: Ron Kovacs
In an effort to clear up some of our
problems, I have decided to change a
few of our policies.  For more 
information on this subject, Please
read COMMENT3 available on the BBS.

If you write any type of article,
Please take the time to include a
copyright notice, source of article,
reprint instructions and any other
information that will help us and
others, process files in a legal

For more information on copyrights,
Please read the July/August issue
of Analog.

I want to thank Mr. Neil Harris for
allowing us to print the GEnie
News on CompuServe. (Issue #62)

Also thanks to Mike and Ron on the
ATARI8 SIG on CIS, for their help
n this matter.

  .....By:Frank Siepel.....
Modifications to BBS

Although much of the information
which follows applies to Carina, many
of the ideas can be used to construct
similar programs with other software.

My BBS has been up almost a year now.
I have made many, many, modifications
to it.  Most of them are small,
cosmetic changes.  In this file, I
plan to describe some of the best
ideas I have had, and, I hope, at
least some of which you will find

Networked message bases
First, I am on the flat-rate long
distance service P.C. Pursuit. I pay
$25, no matter how much I call out.
Calls can be made from 6pm - 7am
weekdays, 6pm Fri - 7am Mon.  I can
reach 25 area codes. So I modified my
BBS to call other system(s) every
night and exchange messages. The
other system(s) need not be running
Carina, but, if they don't run
Carina, you will have a fair amount
of work ahead of you. Even if you
don't run Carina, if you are
interested in establishing any
networked message bases, you should
read on; principles used in this
implementation can be applied to any
BBS program.

Whenever a message is posted on my
BBS, or any of the other BBS's in the
network, a second copy of the message
is APPENDED to a text file, in the
following format:


field           |length|example 
Title            [20]   obvious 
From             [20]   obvious 
To               [20]   obvious 
Base (name)      [8]    NETWORK
Filename of base [15] Dx:Filename.DR?

(standard) 3-line header:

Posted on BBS NAME 
at hr:ms:se  TIME ZONE on dd/mm/yr 

(NOTE: Header is not required, but is
a nice feature, so that one knows the
origin (BBS) of a message, and the
time/date it was posted on (in that
time zone!).

Message contents
Next message, same format.

48 LINES!! 

Carina's message editor module has
been altered to append only messages 
posted in a base called "NETWORK" to
this file, which is called "NEWMS"
(new messages).  The message editor
has also been modified so that it is
capable of ENTERING messages into the
actual message base from a NEWMS
format file.

Whenever someone logs off my BBS, a
program called CONTROL is run.
CONTROL first checks to see if any
new messages are in my OWN NEWMS
file.  If so, it promptly appends all
of these messages to the "mailbox"
files, and then clears my NEWMS file.
Each BBS in the network has a mailbox
file. It contains messages to be sent
to that BBS.

Next, my BBS checks the time. If P.C.
Pursuit is inaccessible, it re-runs
WAITCALL.  If it IS accessible, my
system loads a disk file, which
contains the last transfer date of
messages for each BBS in the network.
If all of their last transfer dates
are equal to today's date, it re-runs
WAITCALL, else, it picks randomly one
of the boards whose last transfer
dates is equal to today's date.  Then
it runs this BBS's log-in program.
This program's format is as follows:

Write out phone number, baud rate, 
to disk file.

RUN CALLBACK module, which uses P.C.
Pursuit to connect with the BBS. (or
just ATDT a local BBS)

LOG-IN like a normal user, entering
<Return>, password, last four, etc.

Atari on at xx/xx/xx xx:xx.

Go to File-Tran.

Execute commands DLNEW and ULNEW.

DLNEW will download that BBS's NEWMS
file.  Once it has been received, a
special program called FILEMAIL is
run.  This program appends the NEWMS
file to every mailbox, except the one
from hence it came.  ULNEW uploads
that particular board's mailbox file
to that BBS.  Of course, the NEWMS
file is cleared after it is received,
as is the mailbox file, so as to
avoid duplicate messages. Once the
new messages are received on the BBS
end, the modified message editor is
run, which, of course, enters the
messages.  This system is very
versatile.  You can have as few as
one system in the network, or as many
as you like. And it is entirely
automatic! Now, to network your BBS
with, say, an A.M.I.S. system, you
follow the exact same process --
except your log-in program will do a
READ ALL NEW instead of downloading a
file. It will buffer and save each
message.  When it is finised, it will
use "E" to enter messages into that
BBS.  Finally, a special program will
need to be run to convert the
buffered message file to NEWMS file
format.  Then it is just business as
usual.  Some things to remember --


a) no new messages
b) line noise 
c) padding fields with spaces!
d) Messages over 40 columns (split
   an 80 column line into two 40
   column lines)

Store high message on disk, if the
BBS lacks a read all new command.
Note that, if the BBS supports, say,
only 20 line messages, your program
will need to split longer messages
into two or three messages. This can,
of course, go both ways; the other
BBS might support 75 line messages.

All files having to do with network
are in the public domain.  The
modified MSGED module may only be
used by registered Carina BBS owners,
as it is copyrighted.  All files
having to do with network can be
downloaded from Pandora BBS at 
(614)-471-9209.  Simply request that
they be put up for download.

original log-in modules were written
by Frank Seipel, and the credit line
in these programs should not be

If you are running a BBS in a P.C.
Pursuit accessible area, I am
interested in networking with you,
and, if you already have a network,
any BBS's you are already networked
with; I have no qualms about making
this very big by networking networks.
If you aren't running a Carina board,
I am not interested unless you are
willing to write the code (see note).

Final note: If you are networking
with non-Carina boards, things can
be made much easier, if you have
THEIR end modified, so that you need
only to download one file, and upload
another!  This is the method I
suggest, as it avoids possible
transmission errors. 
Zmagazine 65  August 7, 1987 (C)1987

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