Z*Magazine: 25-Sep-87 #72

From: Atari SIG (xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 07/17/93-08:00:17 PM Z

From: xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Atari SIG)
Subject: Z*Magazine: 25-Sep-87 #72
Date: Sat Jul 17 20:00:17 1993

ZMAGAZINE 72  ////////////////////////
September 25, 1987 (c)1987 Ron Kovacs
Published/Edited by:  Ron Kovacs
Assistant Publishers: Ken Kirchner,
     Sue Perry, Rich Decowski
<*> Zmag Newswire
<*> Atari News Update
<*> User Group Focus
<*> Technical Help...By Mr. Goodprobe
<*> Letter to the Editor
<*> News from Bruce Kennedy
<*> Zmag Update
From The Chicago Tribune/Courier News

The US government is accusing a 17
year old youth of breaking into AT&T
computers across the nation and 
stealing sophisticated software worth
thousands of dollars.  We will supply
more information should this develop.


Are you a customer of WHITEHOUSE
COMPUTER??  Zmag reader Shawn Harmon
recently informed us about the rip-
off of many by this firm.  Current
information tells us that the firm has
closed anf filed bankruptcy.

In the letter, there were over
$200,000 in claims with only $20,000
in assets.

Whithouse Computer is located in
Williamsport, PA.

If you are one of the many waiting
for goods or you have encountered a
few problems, here is what you can
do to hopefully get your monies back!

Bureau of Consumer Protection
1-717-963-4913  Attn: Mr. McGowen

Better Business Bureau
Scranton, PA

United States Postal Inspector

Please write a letter to the B.C.P
with a copy to the US Postal Inspector
and the PA Better Business Bureau.
Include your cancelled check with
a full explanation of what you have
done to retrieve your goods.

Zmag will keep you informed as this
story progresses.
   ..From GEnie Services Atari RT..
The XEP80 80-column adapters are in
the Atari warehouse in Sunnyvale and
are available for immediate shipment
to dealers.

The XEP80 plugs into the 2nd joystick
port of any Atari 8-bit computer. Any
video monitor can plug into the XEP80
and deliver true 80-column text. An
extra port on the XEP80 allows
standard parallel printers (ST or IBM
compatible) to plug directly into the
8-bit Atari computers.

The driver program for the XEP80 lets
it take the place of the E: device.
Software that is compatible with the
E: device (such as Atari BASIC) will
work in 80 columns without
modification.  Other software that
writes directly to the screen
(bypassing the OS) would need
modification before working in 80

Atari is working on AtariWriter 80 and
Silent Butler 80 to support the XEP80.
Delivery dates on these products are
not yet set.

The XEP80 retails for $79.95.

The new XE Game System has also
arrived in Sunnyvale and is on its way
to toy stores and other retailers in
the USA.

The XE Game System retails for
$149.95.  It comes with a
sophisticated keyboard, a light gun,
and three top games including Flight
Simulator II, Missile Command, and Bug
Xx ________User Group Focus__________
Brooklyn Atari Society for Information
and Communication  (B.A.S.I.C.)

New York City's oldest Atari Computer
User Group

President - Peter J. Fazio
Vice President - Larry Richards
Secretary/Treasurer - K. Edward
Newsletter Editors - Pete Fazio & Bill
BBS Sysops - Pete Fazio
             Larry Richards
             Bill Kokoni

The Brooklyn Atari Society
(B.A.S.I.C.) was founded in May of
1982 by a group of Atari computer
users who frequented a local computer
store in Brooklyn. One of the sales
people at the store came up with the
idea of forming a user group and began
to contact all the "regulars". All of
us were very enthusiastic about the
idea and one of us, who ran a training
school for electricians, offered his
classroom as a meeting place.

The first meeting of the new group was
full of excitement, as the idea of a
user group was new to most people at
that time. Just the idea of a whole
room full of people who were all
interested in Atari computers was
something wonderful. The meeting
lasted long into the night as we all
compared notes and got to know each
other. This first meeting led to
another and another and soon we were
meeting regularly. After a few months
we decided to open membership in the
group to the public, but since the
classroom we were meeting in was a
little on the small side, we decided
to find another meeting place.
Luckily, one of the members belonged
to the Knights of Columbus and
arranged for us to meet there.

After a meeting there to familiarize
ourselves with the facilities, we held
our first public meeting. Thanks to
the people at the computer store, who
publicized the group in the store,
there were many new faces at the
meeting and the group began to grow.
At this time, I was elected to be the
first president of the group, a
position I continue to hold today
(nobody else seems to want to do it!).
Unfortunately, after about a year the
member who belonged to the Knights of
Columbus had to leave the group and we
were once again forced to find a new
meeting place. This time another
member stepped forward and offered use
of his company's meeting room and we
once again had a new home. At that
time we began to consider publishing a
newsletter. The major problem with
publishing a newsletter at that time
was that we had no means of having it
printed. Then a couple of members came
up with the idea of publishing the
newsletter on disk. Except for one
commercial disk magazine, a disk-based
user group newsletter was a new idea.
Thus "The B.A.S.I.C. Bulletin" was
born. The "Bulletin" grew in
popularity and our subscription list
expanded to include subscribers in
several countries and two continents.

Unfortunately, once again we were
forced to find a new meeting place as
the company which had the meeting room
we were using moved away. Luckily, we
were once again able to find a new
location thanks to a couple of members
who belonged to a model railroad club
and arranged for us to share their
club room. The new room was a little
smaller than we would have liked, but
we were now in 1984 and a low point in
the history of Atari (just before Jack
Tramiel bought the company from Warner
Communications), so our membership was
also at a low point. We continued
meeting and publishing our newsdisk,
and in June 1985 the Dateline BBS, our
new user group BBS, went online.
Starting on an 800 with 2 810 drives
running FoReM 26M software, it quickly
added an ATR8000 and grew to 4 double-
sided, quad-density drives and BBCS
software. About a month after Dateline
went online the first 520STs appeared
in the stores and many B.A.S.I.C.
members, myself included, bought them.
This posed a couple of problems, along
with a number of benefits for the
group. Because the new machines used a
new and incompatible disk format we
could no longer publish one newsdisk
for all our members, and we could not
publish two seperate disks. Also,
because the BBS quickly began to
support the new machines, we found
that the once-huge storage capacity of
the quad drives was suddenly filling
with the much larger ST files, and we
were rapidly running out of disk
space. The ST also brought an influx
of new members into the group, and
while this was great for the group, it
caused our meeting room to become very
cramped very quickly.

The BBCS (Bulletin Board Construction
Set) software that was in use on the
BBS at that time proved to be very
buggy and was constantly the cause of
problems with the system, so we
decided to replace it. Since the ST
content of the BBS had grown to the
point where it was dominating the
board, we decided that it was time for
the Dateline BBS to switch to ST
hardware, and in June 1986, almost
exactly one year after it first went
online, we switched to a 520ST and
MichTron 1.8 BBS software. Shortly
after that an Atari SH204 20 meg hard
disk was added and the BBS really
began to grow in both scope and
popularity. Now running MichTron 2.10
software and with 45 megs of online
storage (thanks to the recent addition
of an ICD ST hard drive), Dateline is
one of the busiest (and best, in my
humble opinion) Atari BBSs in the
country (and now accessible through
PC-Pursuit). The number for Dateline
is 718-648-0947 (300/1200/2400 baud,
24 hrs/7 days). For access through
PC-Pursuit, call the 212 area and use
ATDT17186480947 to have the PCP modem
dial into the 718 area (the other half
of New York City).

While the BBS was growing, our
newsletter was not. After one last
disk issue (in which the newsdisk was
retitled "Dateline: Atari" to match
the BBS), we had to suspend
publication while we decided how to
best support both Atari computer
lines. Membership in the group was
becoming more and more ST-oriented,
and the combination of a great desktop
publishing program for the ST
(Publishing Partner) and a member who
is a professional printer made the
choice very clear. The first printed
issue of "Dateline: Atari" made its
appearance this spring, and more are
now following on a bi-monthly

Thus with our successful BBS, our
re-vitalized newsletter, and our
excellent new meeting facility,
B.A.S.I.C. (now in our sixth year)
continues to be a leader on the New
York City Atari user group scene.

Peter J. Fazio,

For more information about B.A.S.I.C.

Brooklyn Atari Society
c/o Peter J. Fazio
2724 East 23rd Street
Brooklyn, NY 11235

718-646-6384 (voice - evenings)
718-648-0947 (Dateline BBS)
The BBS Quest...The Search for More
Drive Cables!

by Mr.Goodprobe

As we proceed into the first of
hopefully many articles with hints,
hardware projects, and modifications
for your Atari equipment, let me serve
notice that I need YOUR questions,
advice, ideas, and projects in order
to share them with others. I am an
electronics technician of 15 years
experience, and a father of three
among other things. I am quick to
reveal that fresh, new and exciting
ideas can not proceed with consistent
regularity from any single human
being, no matter how intelligent,
diligent, or perseverent! I need YOU
so we can together provide the
hardware information that the Atari
community has so dearly lacked these
past few years. I would encourage you
to write up a short text file with
your project, hardware modification,
upgrade, question, idea or any related
item, include you name and address so
we can give proper credit, and upload
that text file to the Zmag Information
Network which can be reached at 201-
968-9148 300/1200 baud 24 hours a day,
or to my daily haunt at the Stairway
to Heaven bbs which can be reached at
216-784-0574 300/1200 baud 24 hours a
day.  If call the Stairway, the
fearless SYSOP, Angel, will allow you
to post your questions and the like in
our hardware message base. If you are
so kind as to send a text file, please
leave me a note informing me of the
upload and I will take it from there.

On the Atari computer bulletin board
of today, it sometimes seems like
things become a never-ending quest for
more disk space to hold the ever
expanding message bases and file
transfer sections. I have quite
objectively noticed that a large part
of Atari bulletin boards have message
bases that outdo most other brands of
computers, as the users there have
learned the value of the exchange of
information which is at the heart of a
great bbs! So...in order to fill the
bill for more disk space, used disk
drives and interfaces are purchased,
printers are added to systems to keep
better track of user logs, and you
never seem to have enough cables!!!

Ever noticed the drive cables you
purchase are long enough to hang
yourself on? Lets summarize how you
can build the cables you need by
yourself, and those that are neat and
a pleasant addition to your system!

You will first need to obtain the 13
pin connectors which can be found at
the end of your drive cables. A good
source for this connector is a mail
order company called MCM, but your
local Atari computer store should also
carry them as a matter of course, and
I have seen them regularly for well
under $2. And you will require one of
your present drive cables. For every
drive cable you lop in half, you end
up with one extra. You will need 2
connectors for each cable operation,
one to go on the end of the cable you
chopped in half, and one to go on
other remaining end of your new cable.
You will need these connectors in
two's, if you wish one extra cable,
you will require 2 connectors, if you
wish to obtain two extra drive cables,
then you will need 4 connectors and so
forth. If you wish 2 drive cables of
equal length, then simply use a pair
of sharp wire snippers and cut the
drive cable in half. If would like to
have one cable short for neatness
sake, and one long one, then simply
cut according to your needs! You could
also even cut the drive cable into 3
short pieces, thus ending up with 3
neat drive cables. If you do indeed
choose this route, you will need 4
connectors to complete your task.

After cutting the cable in half, cut
back the insulation on the connector
free ends about 1 inch. And ideal tool
to do this is an Ex-acto knife. Due to
the fact that the wire coloring has
been found to be different in many of
these cables due to different
manufacturers, the best way to match
the wires is to take the cover off the
end of the cable which has a connector
on it, and match, wire by wire, the
wires on the connectors end, to the
wires on the end you are installing
the connector on. Solder the little
metal tab onto the stripped wire, and
then insert it inside the connector
housing so that the small metal ear
locks the metal connector inside the
housing. The numbering for the wires
can be found on the outside of the

After installing the metal pins on all
13 wires, and inserting them into the
connector housing, simply snap the
cover on and install the screws that
hold on the sheath.

Now you can enjoy the benefit of having extra cables on hand,  the
fulfillment of having done it
yourself, and your BBS users will of
course appreciate the extra disk

Hardware Q&A Forum

Each week we will try to answer a few
users hardware questions. If the
questions begin coming in at a quicker
pace, I will make this a separate

-Question- With the extremely large
amount of software available for the
Commodore C64, is it possible that an
emulator can be written that would
allow an Atari 8 bit computer to run
those same programs?
                     H. Gnagey
                  Akron, Oh

-Answer- Truly, due to the skill I
have seen the programmers of today
display, I imagine there is almost
nothing that is completely impossible.
But, due to the relatively slow speed
of the Atari 8 bit clock, 1 Mhz
roughly, such an emulator would not be
practical. To put this in perspective,
the Atari ST has a rough clock speed
of 8 Mhz, and the emulator for the ST
of the 1 Mhz Atari 8 bit computer runs
at far less than half the speed of the
actual computer it is imitating.
Imagine how slow a 1 Mhz computer
would be emulating another 1 Mhz
computer, the C64!

-Question- Where can a person find the
best possible prices on computers,
drives, disks and software?
                      Patty O'Prian
                     Akron, Oh

-Answer- One of the best sources for
those items is the Computer Shopper.
This is a large (500+) publication
which comes out monthly. It is quite
informative, and contains articles for
Atari 8 and 16 bit computers along
with the other major brands.
Distributors of computer hardware and
software from across this fine land of
ours place advertising here, and you
can reap the benefits! Some of the
most outstanding prices on the items
you seek can be found here. One of the
first bargains you will find therein
is the price of the Computer Shopper
itself..a real steal! You can
subscribe to this fine tabloid, or
pick it up at your local bookstore
such as Walden or B. Dalton's. The
only gripe I can offer about the
shopper is the length it takes to read
through it, many times I have taken an
entire afternoon, paper and pen in
hand, scouring it cover to cover for
great bargains! Single issues are
available for 3 dollars and under, or
you can subscribe for a low yearly
rate of $18. If you wish to subscribe
the address is:

      Computer Shopper, Inc.
      407 S. Washington Ave.
      P.O. Box F
      Titusville, FL 32781
      (305) 269-3211

Keep those Atari's hummin!
  -Mr. Goodprobe-
  (on lend from)
  Midtown TV
  Atari 8/16 Repair/Sales
Message: 57  (#971)
 Title : Booo!!
 Author: The Chef!
     To: Susan Perry

First let me say that I have been a
long time avid fan of Z-MAG in all its
forms,and thanks for the new ST mag

But...what happened??!!!

After reading the current 8 bit
version, I must admit to being
extremely dissapointed!! In my opinion
it amounted to little more than an
advertisement for CompuServe. The
usual fare of informative articles and
commentary was practically
non-exsistent. This issue and the
magazine of late seems to have
degenerated to little more than a
display of on-line directorys of CIS
or menu screens of Carina.

What has happened to the substance
that Z-MAG has always contained? I
hope that future issues will not be
merely a down load of CIS help

      A reader who wants his Z-MAG

Message: 68  (#1051) - Reply to #57
 Title : Booo!!
 Author: Susan Perry
     To: The Chef!

Thanks for your comments concerning
Zmag.  We appreciate the feedback from
our readers.  Now to the business at

Ron Kovacs has made a commitment to
the online services (CIS, GEnie,etc.)
that Zmag will carry examples of the
services they offer to Atari users.
So, in light of this, you will be
seeing more articles of this type in
future issues of Zmag.

You asked about substance.  Some weeks
are good, others...well.  Ron cannot
just take an article from a magazine,
such as Antic or Analog, and reprint
it.  Reprint permission must be
obtained, which is no easy feat.  Nor
can we use database articles from the
online services without prior
permission.  This cuts down on the
informative articles that Zmag readers
are looking for.  And the time it
takes to receive permission often
makes the article out of date.  Zmag's
goal is to bring our readers the most
up to date information possible.

But Zmag readers can help.  We welcome
the submission of 'original' articles.
Did you attend a computer show or
Atari Fest?  How about that fantastic
new piece of software you just bought?
Do you belong to a users group?  Well,
submit a review or article about it. 
Zmag is not the editors and publishers
...it is you, the Atari user.  And
without your help the articles with
substance will be fewer and fewer.

Ok, enough of my long winded reply (I
know, typical woman!). Zmag
Information Network can be reached at
201-968-8148, 300/1200, 24 hours or by
mail at P.O. Box 74, Middlesex NJ
08846.  Ron welcomes feedback from
Zmag readers.  Again, thanks for your


EDITOR: Chef, I apologize for the
recent lack of interesting material.
However, I am trying to let all the
readers know what is available thru
their modems.  I know last weeks issue
was a bit much, But it did give the
many not on CIS the opportunity to
see what they are missing.

Future issues will contain info from
CIS, GEnie and others, but it will
not be as winded as last weeks issue.

In response to the Carina Menus, That
article came right from the CarinaII
demo uploaded to the BBS. I extracted
the best I felt and published it in
two parts.  The reason I published it
was to give equal time to Carina as
we did for Oasis.  When EXPRESS is
released, I will also allow space for

It is pretty much the way Sue Perry
explained it.  But I can tell you that
there are a few big changes on the
horizon, and I am sure you will be
more than happy with them, (I Hope)...

Thanks for reading Zmag and ST-Report.
If you have further commentary, Please
submit them, How else am I to know
how I am doing??  Thanks again!
                    Ron Kovacs

For those of you that are having
trouble or are unfamiliar with the
commands that send those one-line
messages that ring the console bell
(or buzzer) and look like:

;;S_ATAR: - Job 120: Meet me in

The following will give detailed
step-by-step instructions on how to
use this very powerful command, known
as SENd.

First, to see which users are in the
Forum at any given time, type UST at
any command prompt. The list of users
that will appear will be formatted

   Job    User ID    Node   Prgm.
    13  76703,4363   T02LIU SIG
    16  76703,254    T12NYY ACCESS
    19  70206,1130   T04LAN SIG

This tells you that the user with
User ID (PPN) 76703,4363 is in this
SIG, has JOB number 13, and is
connected thru phone node link T02
from Long Island. If the User ID is
unfamiliar, the WHO command at the
MAIN MENU "Enter choice !" or
"Function:" prompt will allow you to
look up any PPN that is a member of
the Forum.

You may then send a one-line message
by typing (at any command prompt) the
following command:

SEN JOB ## mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm
SEN ## mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

where mmmmmmmm is a message up to 79
characters in length, and ##
representing the job number (NOT USER
ID!) of the person you wish to

If you see a message that says "? That
job is busy!" or "Can't SENd to that
job!", the system was unable to SENd
to that job due to one of four
reasons: The User has left the Forum
or logged off, or may be in the
process of DOWnloading or UPLoading a
file, and can't be interrupted.

If you don't get an immediate reply,
it may be the receipient is in the
process of replying to a message so
please exercise a little patience.
#: 196624 S13/Peripherals  22-Sep-87
Fm: BRUCE KENNEDY 72327,1500
To: RON KOVACS 71777,2140 (X)

Here's the latest for US. Who know how
to hack computers. Let's hear it from
our friends at CLAUG in Chicago
According to Jon Berry in the
September 21 issue of ADWEEK, the
people from Microsoft have announced a
joint partnership with Amdek in
Chicago. Amdek has a CD ROM laserdrive
which reads a 550 megabyte capacity CD
ROM which contains The American
Heritage Dictionary, The World
Almanac, The Chicago Manual of Style,
Roget's Thesaurus, Bartlett's
Quotations. Now read that into your
memory and smoke it! It's called
Bookshelf, and is the first major,
widely distributed offering in the new
technology. Hats off again to Bill
Gates, and the innovative people from

Don't forget...Amdek were the people
who brought Atari the first IBM type
plastic case diskettes. We didn't
support them, so they soon liquidated
a very nice double drive for our
machines. Let's look at this system as
a hacking community, come up with a
way to use it, and support this fine
partnership in leading edge

If it's good, the ST can use it!

Let'S hear from you. Network and

BEKennedy from RIACE for ZMAG
Xx Zmag Update
Due to space problems, the Machine
Language reprints have been condensed
into one issue.  This special edition
will become available this week on the

We have also updated the Zmag Index
issue.  Volume 2 will be available
this week.  Index will contain the
indexes of Zmag issues 52 thru 71.

We are gathering BBS numbers for our
end of year issue.  Please let me
know if your system carry's Zmag. Send
email to 71777,2140 on CompuServe,
R.KOVACS on Genie, or on the Lions Den
BBS in Chicago at (312)690-3724, or
the XBN BBS in Mass at (617)559-6844
or also on the Zmag BBS (201)968-8148.
Due date for information is November
1, 1987.

Do you prefer Zmag in 40 columns or
in 80 column??  The choice is yours!
Please let us know what you prefer,
we have received requests for changing
over to 80 column.  Please let me know
your prefrence!!!
ZMAGAZINE 72        September 25, 1987
Please contribute news and articles!
(c)1987 Ron Kovacs/Syndicate Services

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