Z*Net: 20-Apr-90 #516From: Kevin Steele (aj205@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 04/23/90-12:48:04 PM Z
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From: aj205@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Kevin Steele) Subject: Z*Net: 20-Apr-90 #516 Date: Mon Apr 23 12:48:04 1990 ======================================================================= ////// // // ////// ////// Z*Net Atari Online Magazine // / /// // // // --------------------------- // /// // // // ////// // APRIL 20, 1990 // / // /// // // --------------------------- ////// // // /////// // Issue #516 ======================================================================= (=) 1990 by Rovac Industries, Inc. Post Office Box 59 Middlesex, New Jersey 08846 Z*Net Online BBS: (201) 968-8148 ======================================================================= ** CONTENTS ** - THIS WEEK ......................................................Ron Kovacs - Z*NET NEWSWIRE Atari News Update and more...................................... - INSIDE EXPLORER Exclusive Interview with Ahl and Staples...............John Nagy - CEBIT 90 REVIEW Exclusive from Germany's PD Journal..........Christian Strasheim - INTERVIEW Exclusive Interview with Alwin Stumpf........Christian Strashiem - 8-BIT OWNERS Daisy-Dot 3..................................................... - HAGTERM Press Release................................................... - PORTFOLIO PD SHELF PD/Shareware Files....................................Ron Kovacs ----------------------------------------------------------------------- =============== !> THIS WEEK <! =============== by Ron Kovacs WANT TO REACH US? There are three places you can reach Z*Net directly. The following is a guide to where we are located: Pay Services - Service Address Message Base Forum/Area Lib ======================================================== CompuServe 71777,2140 Section 10 AtariArts 1 GEnie Z-NET Cat 31 ST Page 475 25 Z*Net BBS - (201) 968-2024 3/12/24 Baud All Z*Net Issues available, Public Domain Files reviewed by Alice Amore and Mark Quinn, Press Releases, 16 Message and Download areas, E/F mail available and all of the pictures we have released over the last year, including the newest from CeBit and the recent World of Atari show. We are also available now on over 460 BBS systems in the United States and around the world. Call the Z*Net BBS and leave a message to SysOp with additional information on BBS's carrying this publication. We are now supporting the Mechanics Online Magazine and will release Issue #2 next week. CEBIT REPORT AND INTERVIEW(S) An interview with Atari Germany's director and a report on the CeBit'90 show are included in this issue brought to you from the editor of Germany's leading ST magazine "PD". An interview with David Ahl, formerly with Atari Explorer magazine is also included this week with comments from Betsy Staples. This is the first interview since they were fired by Atari Corp a few weeks ago. MORE PICTURES AVAILABLE CeBit'90 pictures are now available. Included in the archives presently being uploaded to the services are: 1040ST, CDAR504 CD-Player, The TT, Atari ABC 386, Portfolio, and Atari Girls in action with Atari products. These pictures are available right now on the Z*Net BBS and CompuServe, and will be uploaded to GEnie over the weekend. ERRATA Last week's Z*NET #515 included extended World of Atari Show coverage, and there were a few errors and omissions: 1. First, we reported that Atari spent over $2,000 on advertising. This was a typographical error; the real amount that Atari spent in promotion of the private, for--profit show was over $20,000. In fact, Atari spent over $2,000 on the catering alone for the Saturday evening developer gathering. 2. We reported that ROLAND, the synthesizer folks, were among the "no-shows". They indeed were there, doing demonstrations in an area well off the main show floor, near the seminar area. 3. We failed to include BECKMEYER DEVELOPMENT in the vendor list. They were present showing their MTX multitasking shell, their point-of-sale networking business package, and other utility applications. We apologize for these errors and omissions. By the way, we were taken to task by several readers on our attendance estimates. However, just as many readers who attended complained that our estimates of "under 4,000" for the two days were TOO HIGH as did those who believed we were too low. We take this to be a good sign that our numbers were pretty close to right. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- ==================== !> Z*NET NEWSWIRE <! ==================== ATARI RESPONDS TO PIRACY CLAIMS Atari's Chairman and President responded this week to statements by the Business Software Alliance (BSA) that it had found several individual copies of Ashton-Tate and Lotus Development business software disks, being used on PC compatible computers at Atari Taiwan Manufacturing in Taipei. Atari's President Sam Tramiel told Newsbytes, "Atari has a long standing corporate policy against the copying of software and does not permit unauthorized duplicates of software to be used for corporate functions or any other purpose. PCs are allowed at the Taiwan plant for employees' personal use. The Atari Taiwan plant uses an IBM 36 mainframe computer and MAPICS software along with Atari ST computers and software for operations and engineering. While we support the ideals of BSA in its endeavor to stop piracy, we believe that they are misdirected and have blown this matter completely out of proportion and have failed to fully investigate the facts or meet with Atari. We are investigating the matter at this moment and will take such actions as are appropriate, but we believe that if such duplicates were found in the plant they were the result of individual employees who did so for their own personal use on their individual computers, and clearly without authorization. It is the position of Atari Corp. that the piracy of software and hardware greatly harms the industry and prevents fair and competitive trade." Atari's Chairman of the board, Jack Tramiel also told Newsbytes, "It is highly unfortunate that time and effort are wasted on such a matter when billions of dollars of revenue are being robbed from American companies each year by mass producers of pirate software, computers and consumer electronics right in the middle of Taiwan, and the Taiwan government does little to stop that. Each year Atari losses millions of dollars in revenue due to pirate video game producers in Taiwan who manufacture exact duplicates of Atari equipment and sell them the world over, yet that is not the issue they choose to investigate or take a stand against." ATARI FALLS FROM FORTUNE 500 The latest copy of FORTUNE magazine again lists the yearly top performers in business. After two years on the prestigious "FORTUNE 500", Atari did NOT make this year's list. Editorial coverage of the companies who were off the list this year did include a brief overview of Atari's recent performance. WEST COAST PIRACY UPDATE Another publication recently reported that a "pirate ring" on the West coast of the US was being investigated by authorities. Part of that story mentioned a specific BBS and its operator, a "Robert Ford, AKA SOFTWARE JUNKY", and alleged his direct participation in the piracy. We would like to clear up any doubts or confusion... the ROBERT FORD of Z*Net is in New Jersey, is well known by the handle CYBERPUNK, and is in no way related to or involved with the Robert Ford of the story. ICD RELEASES NEW SOFTWARE ICD released an update to the ICD Host adapter software with Version 4.6.0 booter software, version 4.53 of the formatter and version 3.51 of the hd utilities. These files are currently available on GEnie for downloading. A note: This software CANNOT be downloaded and placed on ANY local bulletin boards. NINTENDO AGAINST SOFTWARE PIRACY Nintendo announced last Monday a campaign directed against video rental outlets and other retailers, distributors and importers who are renting or selling counterfeit Nintendo video game cartridges. Lawsuits for copyright infringement have already been filed in U.S. Courts in Los Angeles, Minneapolis and Florida to halt the sale of counterfeit NES software. The lawsuits charge willful infringement of Nintendo's copyrights by the importation, rental and sale of "multiple game cartridges" which contain up to 40 counterfeits of Nintendo games in a cartridge. Nintendo is no stranger to campaigns to eliminate counterfeits of its products. In the early 1980's Nintendo was confronted with massive counterfeiting of its immensely popular "Donkey Kong" arcade games. Nintendo successfully instituted over thirty lawsuits around the country. The problem was eliminated. COUNTERFEIT VIDEO GAME SMUGGLERS Nintendo announced this week that U.S. Customs agents had arrested four people in Wilmington, N.C., for dealing in counterfeit Nintendo video game cartridges, including a Taiwanese couple who were caught bringing counterfeit video games into this country. Customs agents had seized approximately 700 counterfeit Nintendo cartridges in the "sting." These cartridges were offered to the agents for $60,000. The cartridges were "multiple game cartridges" containing up to 40 counterfeits of Nintendo video games. MONITERM EARNS $150,O00 Moniterm announced this week that sales for its first quarter were $7.4 million, compared with sales of $7.3 million in the first quarter of 1989. Earnings for the quarter were $150,700, or 3 cents per share, compared with a loss in the first quarter of 1989 of $390,400, or 8 cents per share. During the first quarter, the company announced three new 19-inch monitors, the Viking 115 VCX and the Viking 150 VCX monochrome systems and the Viking 21/91 color system. The resolution of the Viking 150 is 65 percent greater than the current highest performance products. These products were introduced at product seminars in seven major cities around the United States. FCC ADOPTS PROPOSAL Motorola said this week that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has adopted rulemaking changes in the 18 GHz Digital Termination Service (DTS) band to allow the applications of low power radio communications capabilities inside buildings. The 18 GHz DTS band, as indicated by the FCC in 1988, is vastly underused by current license holders; hence, the commission's decision to encourage new proposals for a more effective spectrum utilization. MEDIAGENIC BECOMES LICENSEE Mediagenic and Nintendo announced this week that a major licensing agreement has been agreed on to market and distribute Activision video games in Europe for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). Mediagenic is one of a limited number of companies licensed to distribute NES titles in Europe. Activision has shipped seven titles for the NES in the United States and Canada, including "Ghostbusters II," "Predator," "Stealth A.T.F.," "The Three Stooges," "Archon," the original "Ghostbusters" and "Super Pitfall." A computer version of "Ghostbusters II" was the top selling title this past holiday season in Europe. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- ===================== !> INSIDE EXPLORER <! Z*Net Online Exclusive ===================== by John Nagy EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH STAPLES AND AHL By now, most of the Atari community has heard about the termination of the staff of ATARI EXPLORER MAGAZINE. Edited by Betsy Staples and Dave Ahl, Explorer was "the official Atari journal", owned by Atari Corporation. On March 15, 1990, Atari fired the entire Explorer staff, supposedly motivated by "incendiary" anti-Atari commentary in the undistributed "Spring" issue. On March 29, Atari announced "plans to enhance the ATARI EXPLORER magazine" following "necessary actions taken to relocate the operation closer to headquarters in Sunnyvale, California." It now appears that plans both to reduce the size of Atari Explorer magazine AND to relocate it FURTHER from California are being considered. Dave, Betsy, and other staff members were generous in granting Z*Net several extended interviews across the last weeks in an effort to clarify the public information (and disinformation) about the magazine. David Ahl and his wife Betsy Staples began work as editors for Atari Explorer in 1986, after having edited CREATIVE COMPUTING magazine for Ziff-Davis. Although well-liked within the industry, CREATIVE folded during the mid-eighties downturn of the home computer market. Explorer was a product of Atari Explorer Publishing Corporation, located in New Jersey, and is owned by Atari. In the end, staff at the Mendham, New Jersey office included Staples, Ahl, technical editor John Jainschigg, and assistant editor Barb Edwards. Ahl related that their relationship with Atari has always been "up and down", with "the biggest problem being getting hardware [from Atari] for review". "They expected us to be first with good news about Atari, but they treated us just like anyone else" when it came time for requests for equipment or help. Often, said Ahl, Explorer would be told to make their requests for such items from the Atari public relations firm, but would find that their requests were being bumped by seemingly higher priority attention to magazines like START, ANTIC, and ANALOG. This highlights the real flaw in the EXPLORER concept. While attempting to be an independent, responsible magazine, Ahl was in a no-win position. If he behaved with real independence, he risked angry calls from Sunnyvale. But if he asked for help, he was generally passed from hand to hand, often without anyone taking any interest or responsibility. "Neil Harris was the last person at Atari to take any long-term interest in EXPLORER," said Ahl. Once Neil left in 1988, it seemed that the Atari contact for Explorer would change from week to week. Sig Hartmann, Joe Mendolia, Augie Ligouri, and in the end, Jim Fisher were among those to whom Staples and Ahl reported. While Atari supervision and spot-checking was frequent at first, it gradually dropped to where Explorer requests for Atari approval or comment on stories would languish without response for painfully long periods. Ahl says that it was his intention to keep in mind that his magazine was trying to "represent Atari", but that it was important to remain honest to the readers. His stories would occasionally be negative to a particular product or action, and would normally "pass it by Atari" if he had doubts. He recalled that a disk drive cross-review was nixed by Atari once, but that negative content did not appear to be a frequent concern. The Explorer magazine operated with a payroll approved from Atari, and was "close to breaking even" in paying for itself in the last years of operation according to Ahl. At first, there were few ads, and the magazine lost a lot of money. Atari would make up the difference between expenses and revenues each month. Subscriptions were very good through 1987-88 when each item of hardware sold by Atari came with an Explorer subscription card. During those years, Explorer typically had no trouble making its own way without subsidy. The downturn in sales and hardware availability since then had caused a steady loss in subscriber base, down from a peak of near 65,000 paid circulation in 1986-87 to a current number closer to 35,000. Ahl had asked Atari to approve and fund efforts to get Explorer into larger newsstand distribution, but no one at Atari wanted to back that move. Dave Ahl related a dizzying account of his offer to create a database of Atari's warranty cards. He had been encouraging Atari to give him access to their owner lists for followup subscription offers, but was regularly rebuffed. It seems that the cards were never entered into electronic form and were sitting in countless storage boxes. About when Atari decided to consider Ahl's offer to do the data entry himself (in late 1988), it was found that someone had decided to have them all thrown out to make room in the warehouse. Later, Atari would buy "their owner list" from Activision in order to resume direct mail advertising. Ad sales were good, with the only barrier to larger issues and more ads being Atari's insistence that mail-order hardware ads could not appear in their magazine, consistent with Atari's anti-mail order policy. Ahl claims that his ad sales were "typically number two, behind Start." In mid 1988, talk began of a new magazine to support the Atari Games division. Mike Katz wanted a vehicle to cheaply advertise the Atari games and to rival the "Nintendo Power" magazine that touted 1.2 million circulation. No decisions were made until January 1989, when "ATARIAN" magazine was given the green light for production, to be done by Ahl and Staples in the New Jersey Explorer operation. ATARIAN was a 32 page full color magazine with minimal advertising, supporting the Atari 2600, 7800, and XE systems, and was planned to grow to support the LYNX line. The first issue of ATARIAN came out in April 1989, under heavy supervision and personal involvement from Atari's Katz and crew. About 50,000 copies were distributed on newsstands, with a startup subscriber base of over 2,000. The next issue was again well received, but by the time the November-December issue came to pass, Katz had left Atari and his replacement, Ron Stringari, didn't care for the concept... or at least felt that it "could be done cheaper in California". He quickly found that the latter was not true, and so Atarian was cancelled. Ahl estimated that the Atarian project could have broken even after about a year and a 250,000 investment by Atari. Selling at $1.95 and carrying only about 4 pages of ads,, 65,000 copies were readied for distribution at the end. No notification was sent to the subscribers, mostly "12 year old Atari game fans", with no offer of another magazine or other compensation for their lost investment, says Ahl. "You have no idea how many phone calls I have taken on that", Dave moans. "They could have sent them all a game or something else that is just sitting in their warehouses, anything." The ATARIAN decisions then started affecting EXPLORER as well. Once Stringari decided not to support ATARIAN, he also did not approve paying for ATARIAN. The printer, art house, production people, and more were all the same ones that did Explorer, and they were not amused. And they were understandably reluctant to produce more Atari magazines until they knew they would be paid for it. Betsy Staples related a litany of phone calls, letters, and FAXES to Atari trying to resolve the matter and to get payment approved, and all the while, EXPLORER was getting behind in production. She wrote in an editorial intended for the March/April Explorer, "Certain managers in Sunnyvale, apparently feeling little obligation to pay for the printing of the last issue they had chosen to discontinue, ignored the bill for an unconscionable period." By late 1989, payment was finally approved on an installment basis, and the first payments were expected in early December. The printer waited... and waited... but the money did not arrive. Again to quote from the final editorial Betsy Staples would write for Explorer: "Several calls to corporate headquarters later, we learned that the check had been cut, but that the aforementioned penny pincher -- seeking perhaps, to earn a few brownie points with the rabidly anti-FedEx Tramiels or, perhaps, to such people petty nastiness is its own reward-- had dropped the envelope containing it into the chaotic maelstrom that is the first class mail stream during the weeks before Christmas." During this period, Betsy and David were getting progressively firmer with their requests for at least the minimum attention needed to operate Atari's magazine. Ron Stringari left Atari in January, 1990, and briefly in charge of Explorer was Mike Morand, who spoke with the Explorer staff once, then never returned any more calls. "We simply never knew who was in charge" said Betsy. Last in line was Jim Fisher, who seemed to take some interest, and had responded to a memo from Staples that suggested that Atari needed to seriously revise the way they dealt with their magazine or else drop it altogether. Fisher spoke to Staples in January of "plans to regroup" the Explorer effort. What Staples, Ahl, and company did not know was that "bringing Explorer back in-house" then became common talk at the Sunnyvale headquarters. By the time the January/February issue of EXPLORER was actually in hand, it was a month past it's normal sales date. This caused a major scheduling problem, since the March/April issue would be following too closely. Editor Staples decided to explain their plans to reorganize the Explorer production schedule to have a "Spring", "Summer" and "Fall" issue, then to be back on the bi-monthly schedule by November/December. In her editorial entitled "What Ever Happened to the March/April Issue?", she said, "If you are a subscriber, you are, by now, probably muttering to yourself something about a one-year subscription turning into five issues. Not to worry. Your subscription... is actually an obligation to deliver six issues. And that we will do." Staple's editorial was placed into the "Spring" issue of Atari Explorer, as usual, without prior specific approval from Atari. Atari's reaction when they received their advance copies was instant and livid. All issues (minus a few leaks) were gathered and held out of distribution. Jim Fisher called David Ahl and Betsy Staples and fired them both on a speaker phone call in front of witnesses at both ends of the call. Staples says that she was taken by surprise by the reaction and firing. Although she understood that Atari would not enjoy the negative exposure, she felt that the "readers had a right to know what happened to their magazine", that the matter was "stupid, absurd, so dumb", and that her article was "totally truthful and not damaging to the company" in her opinion. Other excerpts from her editor fill in the picture that Atari felt should not see publication in their magazine: "We are simply trying to minimize the damage done to our dealers and our advertisers by one penny pinching sycophant in Atari's accounting department." "It is very embarrassing to have to offer an explanation of this sort - rather like having to tell your friends that you can't go to the dance, not because you absolutely HAVE to wash your hair but because your mean old ogre of a father says you're too young." "We could have made up something that would have sounded much more plausible and considerably less absurd. [...] This is the straight scoop - stupid but straight - and we appreciate your sticking with us in spite of it." But Staples' comments were not the only ones in the ill-fated issue of Explorer. David Ahl was taking his shots at Atari in his NEWS AND VIEWS column: "I was sick and tired of taking heat from a certain un-named member of the ruling clan at Atari Corp. --call him Mr. L-- who regularly rants and raves about things that appear in this column." "After the November/December 1989 issue came out, Mr L called and reamed me out for publishing remarks about the Portfolio from the very thorough test given it by Personal Computer World in England. Specifically, he objected to my saying that the LCD screen doesn't reproduce all PC graphics correctly. A fact subsequently verified by two other publications. I remarked that I wouldn't have to publish test results from other magazines if Atari would simply lend the editors of its own magazine -ie, us- a Portfolio on which we could run our own tests. "'NOT A CHANCE' said Mr. L, 'you published incorrect information which you didn't check with me. You probably won't get the facts right even if you had your own machine, so you're not going to get one'". "Sounds like a CATCH 22 to me. We can't do thorough reviews because we don't have a machine, but we can't have a machine because we don't do thorough reviews." David's column then moved on to other, more upbeat matters. Atari's abrupt termination of Ahl, Staples, and company brought considerable comment and second-guessing throughout the Atari community. Apparently Atari has not yet learned that the fastest way to spread bad news is to try to suppress it. Within days, copies of the "offending" articles were readily available to those who really wanted to see it. To avoid this particular article causing additional problems for Ahl and company, let me say that none of the Explorer staff either read parts of their work to me nor did they supply a copy of the material. Their comments were all in direct response to my questions. The fact that the articles were painful to read at Atari is clear, but the propriety of publishing them is quite debatable. Ahl claims to have been doing his best to responsibly report to his readers. He was doing his best to provide more than just a pretense of objectivity under the hand of Atari. Conversely, Atari certainly has some right not to be blasted with the "inflammatory" terms and personally embarrassing exchanges recounted in their own magazine. And if Atari had already decided in principle to bring Explorer back in house, the articles provided the trigger that made the timing of the decision unnecessary to consider. In any case, once the die was cast and the firings were becoming known, Atari felt it to be necessary to make a public statement. On March 29, Jim Fisher released a statement which did not refer to firings, articles, embarrassment, or schedule problems. Instead, in a press release titled "ATARI EXPLORER MAGAZINE TO EXPAND COVERAGE", Atari announced "plans to enhance the ATARI EXPLORER magazine." The release continued, "We want to make notable changes in the production of Atari Explorer magazine to include expanded editorial coverage of additional products and enhance the environment for potential advertisers", stated Mr. James Fisher, V. P. Marketing and advertising. "The effort to present this news effectively and more timely requires the magazine staff to have 'instant access' to the technology and information available here." The release ended with a statement that the current issue was "being completed" and would be sent to subscribers soon. The issue is apparently being repackaged with the offending articles removed. What now? Contrary to Atari's statement about "enhancement" of Explorer, and bringing it back to Sunnyvale for "instant access", the leading candidate for producing the "new" Atari Explorer is John Jainschigg, former technical editor under Staples and Ahl. John had submitted a proposal to Atari suggesting a significant downscaling of EXPLORER, including a minimum of advertising and color in a 32 page "public house organ" format, under the management of the Marketing and Public Relations divisions. While Atari officials commented to Jainschigg that his analysis was interesting and valid, they have indicated that they want Explorer to continue basically unchanged in overall appearance and makeup. Jainschigg would produce Explorer from New York, at a location actually about 40 miles FURTHER from Sunnyvale than the New Jersey offices of Ahl and Staples. So much for enhancement and bringing Explorer back home... Ahl and Staples report that they are saddened by their terminations, and that they had enjoyed producing Explorer despite the problems along the way. They received their final checks and vacation pay, and have heard nothing to confirm or deny the rumored possibility of a lawsuit against them from Atari. Staples stands by her decision to be honest with her readers, and Ahl, too, maintains that his comments were fair under the circumstances. They are moving on, generally without hard feelings, to a new project, a consulting firm with a publication called "Effective Communication". We may continue to see articles in other Atari publications under their bylines. We thank all of the ex-Explorer staff for sharing the events of the last years as they saw it, and wish them luck in their new endeavors. And we hope that Atari will make it clear to whomever it is that inherits Explorer just exactly where the line lies between free comment and home control. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- ====================== !> CEBIT '90 REVIEW <! Z*Net Online Exclusive ====================== by Christian Strasheim Every year in March Hannover, West Germany, becomes the computer capital of the world. The leading soft- & hardware developers present their newest products at the worlds biggest computer show in 23 exhibition halls. This year it was CeBIT time from March 21st until March 28th. In the past years at the CeBIT the ATARI booth featured world premier presentations of computers such as the ATARI ST series, the MEGA ST's and lately the TT and PORTFOLIO. This year was a little different. Sure there was one new PC, the ABC 386/40, but that was about the only model that was considered to be a total new kid on the block. In the neverending story about the TT public release ATARI officials could be quoted saying that the TT will hit the stores in November. Where have I heard that before? The model presented at the fair was labeled TT 030-2 and was running under ATX, an ATARI Unix system, that is supposed to be completely in accordance with the Unix standard 5.3.1. including the Berkeley expansions. Another long awaited hardware product by ATARI is the famous CD-ROM. You could see it at computer fairs in 1988, 1989 and now beginning 1990 you could also see it at the CeBIT'90. But you still can't buy it. At least quality software becomes available now for this little, still unreachable gem. The Bertelsmann Company has transferred the COBRA retrieval software onto the ST. This is a sophisticated piece of software used for the PC-CD ROMs that are already available. The PORTFOLIO department of the booth was crowded as usual. ATARI howed of the memory expamsions that upgrade the little giant up to 640 KB. Also demonstrated at the booth was file-transfer between a PC and the PORTFOLIO, connected through the parallel interface. Also available now is an external disk drive for the PORTFOLIO RAM boards that can be easily connected to a normal PC, making it possible now to directly read or write PORTFOLIO RAM boards at the desk of a PC. Another novelty were the OTP-ORM boards. These 'One-Time-Programmable'-ROM boards can only be written on once. The wide range of software packages for the PORTFOLIO are supplied mostly on this storage medium. After a couple of ST network solutions from third party devlopers ATARI has now taken come forward and presented their own ATARI-NET that links STs, TTs and PCs together on an ethernet basis. At their booth ATARI had installed two networks. On one hand a couple of Mega STs were connected with an extern UNIX system and on the other hand 'just' some Mega STs were linked together. In the ST hardware department the 1040 STE was displayed with running animation/sound demos. The STACY could be seen running MIDI software in the corner of the ATARI booth where Music/MIDI software developers like Steinberg were showing off there new tools. The largest part of the ATARI booth was as usual occupated by mostly German soft- & hardware developers demonstrating their new product releases for the ST series. DMC demonstrated Calamus SL, the color version of their powerful DTP program Calamus. Calamus SL now allows colour separation which makes it possible to process colour graphics and photos. Subsequently the films may be sent directly to an exposure device. The software house SCILAB presented with Scigraph SG a new powerful program that can be used to generate business and presentation graphics. From bars to pie charts there are many features available to graph numeric data with Scigraph. The program as many of the new ST programs supports 19" monitors. CCD demonstrated again their graphical wordprocessor Tempus Word. This remarkable wordprocessor is supposed to be available in the stores later this year. For the summer CCD announced with Megastar another new painting/drawing program. What distinguishes Megastar from the mass of the already available other painting/drawing programs are its flexible user interface, automatic mask generation, possibility of animation and a couple of unusual special functions for creative designers. 3K ComputerBild showed off Retouche Professionel, the digital Reprostudio with its numerous features. Scanned or digitized pictures with up to 256 shades or colors can be transformed into lithographic films with reprotechnically precise fieldwides. Virtual memory managment enables the simultaneous presentation of up to 10 pictures, each with a maximum memory size of 16 MB. This allows to process even DIN A2 pictures - from the rough fieldsize 28 up to the high quality fieldsize 120. The output can be done via Laserprinter or any other postscript-compatible hardware. Naturally the pictures can also be transported over to DTP packages for further reproduction. Retouche Profesionel will be available in May for approx. US$ 700. Compo presented a new flexible and very fast database. The program right now is still under development and goes under the name IDA. IDA will be compatible to the database Adimens ST. It is five times faster than its predecessor. It allows the switching between several data files, even multitasking within the data bases. What makes IDA special is its easy expandability through the usage of addable Modula- procedures. The program will be available later this year. Another database program being displayed in Hannover was Easybase, a new product from Omikron Software. Easybase runs as a program or accessory, it manages the data via dynamic memory management, which increases the speed of the program enormously. An Omikron official stated that 1MB of data will be searched through within a second. The program will be available in May for a little over US$ 100. The Frankfurt based company Eickmann, well known in Germany for its low noise and fast ST harddisks, besides demoing some new harddisks also astonished the booth visitors with the Eickmann Noise-Reduction-Kit for the ATARI SLM 804 laser printer. Once installed the annoying sound development by this piece of ATARI hardware is cut down to a minimum. For the ATARI fair in Dsseldorf later this year TURBO 030 is being expected. This hardware accelerator is based on the TURBO 16 expansion board concept. It will feature a 32 MHz 68030 processor. Also for the fall of 1990 an INTERNAL 640 KB memory expansion for the PC PORTFOLIO was announced. In the matter of MS-DOS emulators for the ST, the Heim Verlag showed PC Speed V4.1. Earlier versions often had troubles accessing some of the low cost hard disks available for the ST. This newest version of this popular emulator now expands the compatibility horizon hard disk-wise. PC Speed could also been seen running in a 1040 STE. The STE version of PC Speed does not require any soldering anymore, it is 'just' a plug-in board. The first MS-DOS Emulator for the ST based on a 80286 processor was presented by Vortex. The board will be available this summer and the price will lie around US$ 300. New versions of SCSI-hostadapters, guaranteing full support of all SCSI- commands, were being displayed by ICD. The ADVANTAGE MICRO ST is with a size of 3.3 x 6.9 cm the smallest SCSI-host adaptor for the ST. Much bigger is the ADVANTAGE PLUS ST, the high end host adaptor with an integrated clock. ICD also has a wide range of hard disks (up to 320 MB), streamers as well as hard disk & streamer combinations to offer. The Swiss based company Marvin AG displayed with their PAINTBOX CHILI a digital combination of a digitizer, a genlock interface and a video board for the ST. In realtime pictures with up to 65.000 colors can be imported and digitized. Other video-signals can be mixed digitally. This way titles may be generated and text can be send flying over the screen on predefined lanes. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- ================================= !> INTERVIEW WITH ALWIN STUMPF <! Z*Net Online Exclusive ================================= During the CeBIT'90 ATARI PD Journal editor Christian Strasheim had the opportunity to do an interview with the leading man of ATARI here in Germany, Mr. Alwin Stumpf, director of ATARI Computer GmbH. The following are excerpts from this interview: (Keep in mind that the figures and availabiltiy of products mentioned in this interview relate to the European market in specific West Germany!) PD JOURNAL: In the past years there were plans at Atari to cut down the huge production line. It was rumoured that in specific, production of the Mega ST1 models would be stopped. Is this true? A.STUMPF: That really was the original plan but we revised it lately. The Mega ST1 right now sells pretty good and we would be ill advised to take it out of our product line at this moment. PD JOURNAL: How about other products and their sales figures? How well is the Mega ST2 doing? A.STUMPF: The Mega ST2 is doing as well. It looks as if many people upgrade their systems right now. Last year we sold 30.000 Mega ST2 and Megas ST4 models. PD JOURNAL: A big matter at ATARI is still the TT. Are there also other TT model configurations planned besides the for May announced 2MB RAM TT 030-2 with its 40 MB harddisk and the color monitor SM194. A.STUMPF: We will soon present a 19" momochrommonitor, based on the concept of the SM 194. The hard disk can be exchanged easily through another - due to the new concept of the TT. PD JOURNAL: Will there also be TT packages without a harddisk? A.STUMPF: I won't deny that now. PD JOURNAL: Considering the history of the TT and the already long list of release dates - how definite is the release date May 1990 that Atari gave at the CeBIT press conference? A.STUMPF: We just started to supply software houses and developers. The TTs you see here in Hannover are from the first production series. PD JOURNAL: What are the differences between the TT from Dsseldorf'89 and the TT from Hannover'90? A.STUMPF: The first TT was not TOS compatible and it was too slow. There were communication problems between the 11 custom chips, the TT uses. But now the computer looks and works, as we expect it to do. The documentation is also up to date. So far only as README-Doc on disc but we will have it shortly printed on paper. PD JOURNAL: The discussion concerning the TT design has calmed down this year. But the question still stands, whether this design will have enough room for expansion boards for the TT. Will there also be a TT in a different casing? A.STUMPF: Yes, at the ATARI fair in Dsseldorf this year we will present a better equipped model in a bigger casing that will feature at least 4 VME-slots for normal Euro-size-boards and a bigger memory. This will be the so called TTX-version of the TT. PD JOURNAL: When the TT was announced first two years ago it definately was considered state of the art. Since then other computer companies like Apple have also developed in that direction and this year at the CeBIT we see the MAC IIfx based on a 40 MHz 68030 processor. Does ATARI already have construction plans for a faster TT? A.STUMPF: Sure, but a development of a faster TT does not only depend on ATARI alone but also on Motorola. When there is a reasonable price for the 68040 then we will have a deal. I think we are in a way commited to that line. There are not too many other alternatives. We could switch and go for something in the line of RISC-technology, but that is a totally different world. PD JOURNAL: Another major topic at the CeBIT press conference were computer sales in the Eastern block countries. Have there been already talks about software distribution in these countries? Atari will place their computers on the DDR market - but what about the software? A.STUMPF: There are official ditribution ways, through Forum, and naturally a lot of stuff has been and will be bought privately in West Germany and then brought over the now open boarder. This is similar to the hardware sales. Officially we sold so far between 2.000 and 3.000 computers in the DDR. But this figure does not say anything. PD JOURNAL: Another interesting market seems to be Poland. The figure of 100.000 Atari Computers being sold there last year speaks for itself. A.STUMPF: Yes, among these were 40.000 STs and the other 60.000 were Atari 8-bit computers. We are very strong in Poland. Since years in Poland there existed a so called unofficial shadow market functioning on the valuta-bases. I believe that we are the leading computer force on the normal, private market in Poland, not in the high end market. There exist evaluations that we cover about 80% of that market. PD JOURNAL: How did Atari solve the problem of converting the foreign currencies that always exists when dealing with Eastern block countries? A.STUMPF: We only made either straight valuta-deals or so called boarder-deals. All you need therefore is a little time. That way we sold computers to Bulgaria, to Yugoslavia and even to the USSR. PD JOURNAL: What role did the language barrier play? In the DDR that was no problem but what about the German TOS in Poland. Does a polish TOS exist? A.STUMPF: The main expressions have been translated. I am sure there exists a Polish TOS - it is not an official one and it's just a disc version. PD JOURNAL: Let's change the subject and go over to the portable computers STACY and Portfolio. At the press conference Sam Tramiel spoke about a portable ST with the size of the Portfolio. Is that more than just a dream? A.STUMPF: Plans that go in that direction existed already for a long time. We believe that the handheld-market will play a big role in the future. And when we are able to develop such computers on an MS-DOS bases, then it is not such a big deal for us, to build similar computers based on an ST or even a TT. But these portable solutions will be a little bigger than the Portfolio size. We are talking here more in DIN A4 size. Computers that will fit in your suitcase not your pocket, so to speak. The Portfolio is definitly the limit concerning the size topic. PD JOURNAL: Mr. Stumpf, we thank you for that interview. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- ========================= !> 8-BIT OWNERS UPDATE <! ========================= DAISY-DOT III Copyright 1990 By Roy Goldman, All Rights Reserved The files contained in the ARChives listed below (FILES) comprise the distributable version of Daisy-Dot III (DD3). This version may be freely distributed in any manner as long as unmodified copies of the following files are kept together: DD3DOC.TXT PP.COM PPCUSTOM.BAS FE.COM FE.HLP FECUSTOM.BAS FU.COM 11 fonts (*.NLQ -- 2 Daisy-Dot II fonts and 9 new DD3 fonts) This version lacks several features found on the Registered version: 1. The registered version includes a detailed 50 page printed manual. The documentation of this version covers just the basic aspects necessary to use the software. 2. The registered version has full support for SpartaDOS X (this version isn't completely compatible with it). 3. This version allows you to use only one font per document from the print processor -- with the registered version you can switch fonts at any point in a document and use an unlimited number of fonts in each document. 4. The registered version includes some fonts left out of the distributable version because of space constraints. The Registered Version is available only from the author. For a $25 donation you will receive the complete registered version of the program. Send all correspondence to: Roy Goldman 2440 South Jasmine Denver, CO 80222 COMPATIBILITY Daisy-Dot III is compatible with the following systems: - Any Atari 8 bit computer with at least 48K - Atari DOS 2.5, SmartDOS, MyDOS, or SpartaDOS - Any graphics-capable Epson 9 pin printer or compatible, Star Gemini 10X/SG10, BlueChip/Mannesmann Spirit, Atari XMM801, or C.Itoh Prowriter. FEATURES Daisy-Dot III brings to Atari 8-bit computer systems sophisticated Near Letter Quality typesetting capabilities that until now have been found only on much more expensive systems with much more memory. DD3 processes raw text files (saved files) and controls ALL formatting, from word wrap to margins to page breaks to headers and footers, to produce high quality output on the most popular 9 pin dot-matrix printers. In addition to being compatible with the many Daisy-Dot II fonts widely available, DD3 introduces new font formats for larger, more detailed fonts which can be magnified up to about 1 square inch. Some formatting features of DD3 include underlining, hanging indents, different types of tabs with dot leaders, controllable line-spacing, variable page size, and the ability to chain text files. FILES The distribution version is contained in 3 ARC files: DD3A.ARC DD3B.ARC DD3C.ARC For those using single density drives, it's recommended that the first two files be unarced to one side of a disk, and the third to side 2 (or another disk.) By using the 'View file' and 'Extract With Query' option of Bob Puff's UnArc program, it's also possible to select which files you want on each disk. As always, making a backup copy of the ARC files should be your first action. The documentation file (DD3DOC.TXT) should be copied from DOS directly to your printer. The files are available on CompuServe in the Atari 8-Bit Forum, Data Library 1 (New Uploads). ----------------------------------------------------------------------- ======================= !> HAGTERM ELITE 4.0 <! ======================= Press Release Atari Corner Publishing is proud to announce Hagterm Elite 4.0, the solution to your terminal needs. HagTerm is a powerful communications program which surpasses all currently available packges, in both power and price. It utilizes a user friendly (yet powerful) GEM interface. HagTerm is feature packed, and contains many time-saving features that are exclusive to this program. The HagTerm package will includes several very useful shareware utilities, such as ST Whiz and UNLZH. Additionally, the source code in GFA Basic 3.0 is included for FREE! All this for $20! Many users might recognize HagTerm as a shareware product. The last shareware version of HagTerm was v3.3. This version contained a number of bugs; most notably, it did not work with monochrome monitors. All of the known bugs have now been fixed, and many new features have been added. Additionally, a bound manual has now been produced. All users registered with previous versions of HagTerm will receive HagTerm Elite 4.0 for free. Read below for a list of its many features, and discover how HagTerm can help fill your needs! >>>Main Features<<< ~~ User Friendly: Everything can be accessed using the mouse. Dialog Boxes appear at every stage to help you make your choices, and icons /buttons/menus are all used effectively. ~~ In addition to activating commands using the mouse, most of the functions can also be used using the keyboard for quick operation. ~~ A full range of disk functions are included, including a powerful text file viewer and a full-featured disk formatter. ~~ Execute external programs from within HagTerm. Additionally, buttons are provided to allow quick execution of DCOPY and UNLZH. Click on a button, and in two seconds DCOPY's main menu pops up! ~~ Exclusive Feature: The ability to use your favorite external editor painlessly! Just click on a button, and your favorite word processor can come up, with the capture buffer loaded into the work area! ~~ Full range of settings are available: Turn on/off VT52, keyclick, bell, full RS232 settings (including baud rates from 50 bps up to 19,200 bps!), colors, time/date, etc. ~~ Xmodem/Ymodem (including batch) file transfers are available, with many options. Zmodem will be supported very shortly in the next upgrade. ~~ Soon, there will be 100% compatibility with Shadow, and will competely replace the Shadow Desk Accessory. ~~ 20 powerful Macros can be built. HagScript commands and variables can be used in each macro. ~~ Exclusive to HagTerm: A "BBS-Pause" feature to prevent the BBS automatically logging you off while you go out and make a coffee! ~~ Exclusive to HagTerm: An "Auto-Pause" feature to automatically pause the screen display after every page of text. ~~ On-screend display of Time/Timer. ~~ Works with both color and monochrome monitors, and is 100% compatible with TOS 1.0, 1.2, and 1.4. ~~ Can be easily installed on a hard drive, and uses no form of copy protection. ~~ In two weeks, a brand new feature will be introduced that will revolutionize the Atari ST communications. A new emulation mode, the "VT-520," will be supported. This new exciting emulation will allow the user to interact with the BBS using GEM! That's right, you will be able to use dialog boxes and GEM menus to communicate with your local BBS instead of bearing with boring and unfriendly text displays. The STark BBS software will support this emulation mode. >>>Dialer Features<<< ~~ Up to 80 dial slots are available to store BBSes. Each slot contains fields for the name of the BBS, a phone number, the user name, password, a Defaults and HagScript file to load upon connection, and a two-line comment area for storing miscellaneous notes about each BBS! Additionally, you can store different baud rate, duplex, and linefeed for each BBS. ~~ The 80 Dial Slots are divided into 5 "pages," with each page storing 16 BBSes. Additionally, each page can also have a title to help you in grouping your BBSes. ~~ Each BBS can also have its own auto-log sequence, where you can define a wait and answer strings to easily automate logging on to the BBS. ~~ A Print option is available to produce a formatted output of the BBSes, including a long and a short format. ~~ Block functions are available, to allow you to Cut/Paste BBSes from one slot to another. You can also Insert and Delete BBSes. ~~ A sophisticated AutoDialer to monitor the modem for fail/connect strings. Full range of setup options are available for the AutoDialer. ~~ Multiple BBSes can be selected, and they will be dialed one after another until a connection is reached on one of them. ~~ A powerful Search function is included, to help you find a specific BBS. ~~ Exclusive to HagTerm is the Fast Dial option. With this command, you can enter just part of a stored BBSes name, and HagTerm will try to find a match and dial the matched BBS. This feature makes calling a BBS _very_ easy and does not force you to use the Dial Mode for dialing, thus allowing you to dial using the keyboard. >>>Editor Features<<< ~~ A full-featured text editor is a part of HagTerm. It can be used to edit the capture buffer, or any text file from disk. ~~ It uses assembler routines to display text on the screen. Screen redraws have never been faster! ~~ Automatic word wrap is supported. ~~ Cut, paste, move, merge, or delete a block. Upload, or save the block to disk. ~~ Four markers are available, and you can jump to any of the marks. You can also go to a specific line number. >>>HagScript Features<<< ~~ HagScript is the most powerful portion of HagTerm. It allows the user to literally create a program that uses HagTerm's features. ~~ Over 90 commands are supported, including conditional statements and even loops. ~~ 52 user-configurable strings are available, and an additional 50+ system variables are available that store HagTerm information (User Name/Password of last dialed BBS, time/date, settings, etc.). These variables can be used from not only in HagScript, but most other parts of HagTerm, including in the Macros and the Dialer Auto-Log sequence. Automation has never been this powerful! ~~ A full range of graphics commands are included. Commands to get user inputs are also supported. ~~ A powerful Auto-Record feature is available to automatically create a HagScript file based on your every step. ~~ Unique to HagTerm is the ability to install HagScripts onto the Menu to quickly execute a heavily used HagScript by either clicking on the menu item or pressing a key. Or, have HagTerm execute a HagScript at a specified time and date. ...and many more features are available as well! HagTerm Elite 4.0 contains more features than any other communications program for the Atari ST. Yet, it costs half of what the inferior programs cost! HagTerm Elite 4.0 is intended to be used by both the power users (who will appreciate the wide number of HagScript commands) and the occasional modemer (who will enjoy the automation and ease of use in HagTerm). Additionally, with the inclusion of the source code, GFA Basic programmers will now be able to actually look at how some of the features have been implemented! Support is free, and comes directly from the author. Who would know the program better than the author himself? HagTerm is also being enhanced daily. All future versions will be sent to all registered users, for FREE! In about two weeks, a major upgrade will be available which will include new transfer protocols and VT-520 support. HagTerm Elite runs on any Atari ST system with at least one megabyte of RAM. Hard drive is recommended, but not required. To order, please send a check or money order for $20 (plus $2 S&H) to: (Hopefully, soon Atari dealers will have HagTerm Elite for sale) Atari Corner Publishing 515 Wing Street Glendale, CA 91205 For more information, or to order using COD, give the author a call at (818) 502-0817, and ask for Hagop Janoyan. Please call between 10:00 am and 9:00 pm (Pacific Time). Leave a message if Hagop is not available. Dealer inquiries are welcome and encouraged! ----------------------------------------------------------------------- ======================== !> PORTFOLIO PD SHELF <! ======================== by Ron Kovacs The following is a list and description of PD files available for the Atari Portfolio. All of these files are currently available in the PortFolio Forum on CompuServe. EMMAPF.ARC Emma for the Portfolio. Emma, PC Magazine's MCI Mail utility, automates the interface to MCI for uploading and downloading mail. Written by Pete Maclean. XTERM2.COM XTERM2.DOC XTERM2.HEX This is the X-Terminal package for the Atari PORTFOLIO. It contains half and full duples, simple macro capability, and it strips the high bit even in 8-bit communications (for CIS). It is entered into the public domain by Jim Strauss 70116,667. DIAL.ARC Dial program for Xterm. Modify the phone number in DIAL.BAT to the BBS needed. The program will dial a Hayes Compatible Modem and call Xterm. Additional comments in batch files for wait periods etc. Works good with Worldport 2400. PFBOOT.ZIP Atari Portfolio Serial Interface Bootstrap programs automatically load XTERM1 using binary-to-hex translations through the serial port, with checksums. Takes the drudge out of loading a serial only Portfolio. Simple, even a "Type-A" personality can do it! PXM.ZIP Revised version 0.2 fixes the check for port status when writing a transfer block. PF- PF->Mac Backup is a Hypercard Stack which is designed to automate backing up any number of files from your Portfolio to your Mac. You enter the directory specifications or filenames into the stack and it does the rest. It requires XTERM2 and also contains a simple terminal emulator. FOR MACINTOSH USERS ONLY, A STUFFIT ARCHIVE. PFCAL.SIT This is a Macintosh Hypercard stack which will convert a Portfolio Diary file into a very nice standard calendar form, complete with all your appointments. May be printed with a LaserWriter or ImageWriter. USEFUL ONLY ON A MACINTOSH, TRANSFERRED AS MACBINARY AND COMPRESSED WITH STUFF-IT. PASSWO.ZIP Password v1.00 is a security program designed to prevent unauthorized access to your Portfolio's data. The .EXE file is 512 bytes in size, and a DOC file is included. Developed by Albert Nurick. FILELI.BAT A .BAT file for your PF which will list files from a volume to your screen. It is set to list all the files in all my subdirectorys on volume A: but you can easily change this with the editor. This is a piece of an AutoBackup routine. SDL.ARC Another Portfolio sorted directory utility. Includes a small batch file that allows it to run correctly using the /P option. Sorts directory by filename, date, size or extension. ATTR.COM ATTR.DOC This program from PC Magazine permits display and modification of the archive, system, hidden and read-only file attributes. PDD2.EXE This is a program that permits a Tandy TDD-2 disk drive for the Model 100/102/200 to be used with an MS-DOS machine. Downloaded from the Atari BBS. The accompanying messages said that the author's name is Tim Palmquist and that he can be found at the Portable BB at (603) 924-9770. WCX.ARC Portfolio (MS-DOS) program that counts words, lines and bytes in a text file. UPDATE.ARC Newest version of update fixes "space-return" in editor of version 1.070 but is compatible with 1.052 and includes all previous fixes. UPDT104.COM is 1536 bytes. Place in autoexec.bat file. Copyright 1990 Atari Corporation ARCEX.DOC ARCEX.COM ARC Extractor program from the IBMNEW Forum; works well on PORTFOLIO. Rename this file either ARC-E.COM or ARCE.COM for it to work properly. NOTE: be sure to get the DOC file for this program; it's full of / commands that can be used for advanced applications. BATCH.ARC Useful Batch Files for the Atari Portfolio. STRIP.ARC For automatically stripping hard carriage returns from ASCII files, as in transfering text files to your word processor via the Portfolio parallel interface. TEXTCO.ARC When transfering text files via the parallel port to your IBM, you'll end up with hard carriage returns at the end of every line. (This won't happen when you use an XMODEM program via the serial port.) Textcon will take out those carriage returns -- except those at the end of a paragraph. It's pretty accurate. If you're using a 40 character screen, make sure you select the switch that adjusts a different default for the right margin. BINHEX.COM This takes a binary file and converts it to a hexadecimal file (which can be converted back by HEXBIN.COM). The resulting hexadecimal file is called RESULT.OUT. It can be used to created text files that may be transfered to the Portfolio using the standard DIP-DOS COPY command. BINHEX can be copied directly to the Portfolio using COPY AUX. CHKSUM.COM This takes a filename and prints a simple checksum for the file as a hexidecimal number. (It is a simple sum of the bytes in the file). It can be transfered into the Portfolio with a COPY AUX CHKSUM.COM and it should end up as 118 bytes long. It is useful for verifying transfers of files. PKUNZIP.EXE Unzipper program (shareware) called PKUNZIP. OTHELLO.COM OTHELLO.DOC Othello will run on the Portfolio if you set the EXTERNAL screen to STATIC. You must use the ALT and cursor keys to scroll around. It's a whole new twist on an old game! Some may find the screen scrolling irritating.... be warned! QEDAUX.ARC QEdit 2.08, an excellent shareware text editor. This ARC contains the configuration program (QCONFIG.EXE and QCONFIG.DAT) and READ.ME, and unArcs to almost 60K. SCI-13.ZIP This is a Small 'C' interpreter. The EXE file is only 32K so you should have no problem fitting it on a credit card. One word of caution: Stay away from the 'edit' command as it requires an ANSI.SYS driver. You may edit the SHELL.SCI program so that 'edit' can no longer be used. Full documentation is included. Shareware ======================================================================= ======================================================================= Z*Net Online Magazine is a weekly released publication covering the Atari community. Opinions and commentary presented are those of the individual authors and do not reflect those of Rovac Industries. Z*NET and Z*NET ONLINE are copyright 1990 by Rovac Industries. Reprint permission is granted as long as Z*NET ONLINE, Issue Number and author is included at the top of the article. Reprinted articles are not to be edited without permission. ======================================================================= ======================================================================= ZNET ONLINE Atari News FIRST! Copyright (c)1990 Rovac Industries, Inc.. ======================================================================= -- posted by: aj205.cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Kevin Steele) --
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