Z*Net: 12-Oct-90 #541From: Kevin Steele (aj205@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 10/21/90-03:14:19 PM Z
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From: aj205@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Kevin Steele) Subject: Z*Net: 12-Oct-90 #541 Date: Sun Oct 21 15:14:19 1990 ============((((((((((=========(((===((==(((((((==((((((((============ ===================((====((====((((==((==((==========((=============== ================((=====((((((==((=((=((==(((((=======((=============== =============((==========((====((==((((==((==========((=============== ============((((((((((=========((===(((==(((((((=====((=============== Z*NET ATARI ONLINE MAGAZINE October 12, 1990 Issue #541 Publisher/Editor : Ron Kovacs Assistant Editor : John Nagy Z*Net New Zealand: Jon Clarke Advertising: J K Tarpinian Z*Net Canada: Terry Schreiber Z*Net Germany: Mike Schuetz Z*Net England: Paul Glover Contributor: Dr. Paul Keith ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ /// EDITORS DESK ------------------- by Ron Kovacs The Z*Net BBS has been getting busier along with the crossnet base. If your system is interested in joining the Z*Net Conference, please send along your node information to Node 593 today. This issue will be sent through the area along with other files released from Z*Net. Thanks for reading! /// Z*NET NEWSWIRE ------------------- US AND CANADIAN ATARI NEWS ========================== Compiled by John Nagy, Ron Kovacs and Terry Schreiber START MAGAZINE ADDS Z*NET NEWSWIRE Beginning with the December, 1990 issue, the popular Z*NET NewsWire will be presented within STart Magazine each month. STart's Tom Byron and Z*Net's Ron Kovacs recently signed contracts that make Z*NET the exclusive news column in the well known monthly ST specific glossy magazine. STart features the largest circulation of any domestic Atari magazine, and has recently added the subscribers of ANALOG and ST-LOG to their rolls. Z*Net will provide about three pages of news bits and news stories for each issue of STart. Says Tom Byron, Editor of STart, "Its a natural progression. Z*Net has the reputation and track record for solid news reporting." Z*Net Publisher Ron Kovacs adds, "This is a chance for Z*Net to reach a wider audience, beyond the modem users and user-group members who already get the Z*Net News Services." It is expected that the added recognition and credibility that the merger of efforts will bring to both publications, will further increase the quality and quantity of Atari news presented in all media ventures of STart and Z*Net. Z*Net is already a regular part of the news coverage of a number of magazines worldwide, including PD JOURNAL of Germany and soon ST USER of Great Britain. The Z*Net User Group Newsletter Supplement also goes to nearly 4,000 readers in the USA, Canada, Panama, New Zealand, Australia, and England. STEREO COLOR MONITOR Released to dealers this week was a new color monitor to compliment the STE's stereo sound. The SC1435 is the latest edition to Atari's ever growing line-up of computer products. With the release of the STE line's stereo sound capabilities it was a natural to follow it up with the SC1435. The monitor is not a re-structured SC1224 as was first thought but of a completely different design. ATARI TO BUNDLE NEODESK 3.0 Atari Canada released fourth quarter promo packages to their dealers in which Neodesk 3.0 was included with every ST or STE sold. Neodesk 3.0 is an alternative desktop for the ST/STE with many of the features lacking in the standard Atari Desktop. ATARI FOURTH QUARTER PROMOS 520STFM Promo ----------------------------------------------------------------- @ 520STFM | @ 520STFM @ Neodesk 3.0 | @ SC1224 Colour Monitor | @ Neodesk 3.0 _________________________________________________________________ In addition to the 520 packages two software bundles are being offered: Bundle 1: Typing Tutor, Memory Master, General Store, Magical Math, Magical Anagram, Equation Builder, Planetarium, Cracked, Neochrome, Super Breakout. Bundle 2: Lombard Rally, Hyperpaint, Typing Tutor, Backgammon, Go-Moku. Promo 2 _________________________________________________________________ @ 1040STE | @ 1040STE | @ 1040 STE @ Neodesk 3.0 | @ SM124 Monochrome | @ SC1435 Stereo CLR | @ Neodesk 3.0 | @ Neodesk 3.0 ----------------------------------------------------------------- Same software bundles are available for the 1040 packages. Promo 3 @ Mega 2 @ SM124 monochrome monitor @ Megafile 30 hard drive @ SLM804 Laser Printer @ Calamus Software @ Outline Art Software @ Neodesk 3.0 @ Guide to Calamus Book Portfolio Bundles _________________________________________________________________ @ HPC-101 Parallel Adapter | @ HPC-301 Card Drive @ HPC-202 64K memory Card | @ HPC-203 128K memory Card ----------------------------------------------------------------- CANADIAN COMPUTER SHOW The Canadian Computer Show, November 12th thru 15th, International Centre of Commerce, Toronto Ontario Judging from last years attendance records of 30,000 plus this is definitely Canada's largest computer show. If you couldn't make it to Comdex then plan on trying to make it to this one. Atari will again be attending this great event held each year in Toronto. They will be displaying their full product line (including TT) with staff on-hand to answer your questions. Check it out - Booth 3530 Atari Canada. EPSON OFFERS DRIVEPORT WITH LAPTOP Epson will begin offering Manzana Microsystems' DrivePort free with the purchase of an Equity LT-386SX laptop computer. Using an external drive port enables laptop owners to maximize the utility of Epson's removable hard drive. The promotion, which runs from Sept. 1 to Dec. 31, offers customers a $399 savings based on Manzana's suggested retail price. The LT-386SX includes 2 MB of RAM, VGA black-on-white backlit display and a 2/3 length AT-compatible expansion slot. The unit is available for a suggested retail price of $4,599. System requirements for use with the DrivePort include MS-DOS version 3.2 or higher and 16K of RAM. SEGA NAMES PRESIDENT & CEO Sega announced that Thomas J. Kalinske has joined Sega as president, chief executive officer and member of the board. Kalinske was most recently president and chief executive officer of Matchbox International and president of Universal Matchbox Group. Prior to that he was president of Mattel Inc. and had worked for 15 years at Mattel. MOTOROLA ANNOUNCES SETTLEMENT Motorola announced this week that it has reached a settlement with Hitachi on intellectual property and technology disputes between the companies regarding Hitachi's H/8 and H/16 microcontrollers and Motorola's 68030 and 88000 microprocessors. Settlement terms were not disclosed. Motorola said it will file joint motions with Hitachi before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas, requesting that all pending cases involving Hitachi's microcontrollers and Motorola's microprocessors be dismissed. MICROSOFT UNVEILS ENTERTAINMENT PACK Microsoft announced this week the availability of Microsoft Entertainment Pack for Windows. These games were developed by Microsoft Windows graphical environment version 3.0 programmers in their spare time and became popular at Microsoft, the company decided to market the package commercially. Included in the Microsoft Entertainment Pack are Tetris, Taipei, MineSweeper, TicTactics, Golf, Cruel and Pegged. SIERRA ON-LINE ANNOUNCES ALLIANCE Sierra has announced the signing of a long term publication and distribution agreement with Game Arts of Japan, developers of Sierra's first Japanese imports Thexder and Silpheed. Together, the two companies will produce high-quality games for the Japanese and American game markets. Effective immediately, Sierra will begin converting and distributing Game Arts products in the United States and Europe. /// 1990 WAACE ATARIFEST REPORTS -------------------------------- REPORT #1 by Jerry Cross ========================= I want to begin by saying that the WAACE show was one of the best Atari Shows I have attended. And I have been involved in or attended a lot of them. One of the things I enjoy most about Atari shows is you can get a first look at many new products. This show had them in abundance. Joppa Computer Products introduced "JuST the FAX!". This is a hardware/ software product that allows you to send FAX messages using 4800 baud, Group 3 FAX transmission. It also doubles as an excellent 2400 baud modem that will work with any communication program, such as FLASH. The software will allow you to convert IMG, Degas, and ASCII files into a FAX file for transmission. There are printer drivers to allow you to convert Pagestream and Calamus files to FAX, allowing you to produce your page and then FAX it to someone. The price for all of this is $169 suggest retail. It was sold at the show for $139. I did a few quick tests, and sent out a couple Pagestream pages to the FAX machine at work and it really works nice! There will be some upcoming upgrades that will allow both sending and receiving FAX messages at 9600 baud, and adds additional features to the modem. For more info contact Joppa at (301)679-4102. Alpha Systems, had two new products. JamMaster is a powerful software program digital sampling synthesizer program loaded with features. It requires a cartridge based sound digitizer for output, such as Digisound Professional, and a MIDI compatible keyboard. You create your own sounds and assign them to your keyboard. You can have up to 32 different sounds and any number of octaves. Instead of using musical sounds, try some digitized voices or sound effects. It's great! Also introduced was an inexpensive clock card called Watchcart. This is a simple, bare bones cartridge that is just what I was looking for. I'm not sure what the retail price was (it wasn't in their flyer) but the show price was $12. HiSoft was showing their line of products, including lattice C Version 5, and the new HARLEKIN program. Harlekin is a bunch of useful utilities rolled into one neat package. Just to name a few, there is a word processor, scrapbook, disk editor, terminal program, calendar, ascii table, RAMdisk, printer spooler...and on and on. It does require at least 1Mb of memory however. Hisoft is a British company, but I believe Michtron is a distributor of this product. (Sorry, I was reading my notes about this on the plane trip back, and it was too late to ask). In the Gadgets by Small booth...well what can I say. All sorts of new toys over there! Spectre GCR was running on a TT. The 68030 was installed and strutting it's stuff. It was running next to a second ST running the same bouncing ball demo, at TWICE the speed! The 68030 upgrade is quite large, and will probably be offered as a Mega upgrade only, unless Dave can figure out a way to shrink it down. The Telsa coil was a real grin. Can't wait for that to go into mass production. Sliccware introduced their new product SLICCTOP. WOW! This desktop replacement features multi-tasking, code swapping, process queuing, unlimited windows, data sharing, code sharing, dynamic memory, and too much other stuff to mention! Watch for a review of this product in the near future. ICD introduced their new product, AdSpeed. This is an 68000 accelerator for all models of Atari ST's from the 520 through the STE. Using a multilayer, surface mount design, the chip is the side of the 68000 chip and will be no problem to install. Just unsolder the old chip, install a socket and install the AdSpeed. I ordered one at the show and will have more information once I can get it installed and play with it. The flyer gives the following features: No mouse, I/O or blitter conflicts, no jumper wires, software selectable true 68000 8 MHz mode for 100% compatibility (switches speeds on the fly without rebooting the computer), 32 kilobytes of high speed static RAM for 16k of data/ instruction cache and 16k of catche tag memory, full read and write- through caching for maximum speed, and supports 16 MHZ high speed ROM access. Genie had a few surprises of their own. This month, Genie began their new price cutting rates. To help the user even more, they are introducing Aladdin. This is a terminal program written by Tim Purves of Michtron. You now have full featured program that lets you automate your online time by automatically capturing messages and download descriptions. You can then read and reply to messages while off line, and select files to download. The program will then automatically send your messages, and download the files. Full use of the GEM interface makes this program a must have for all Genie users. Best of all, it's FREE. It should be available for downloading sometime this week. Add to all of these new products a number of upgrades for many other products, and this was a very enjoyable show. The exhibition rooms featuring a number of topics were great also! I don't know how they lucked out and found a hotel that could fit in so many of these "classrooms" but I sure hope they can secure it for future WAACE shows. But you didn't think I'd leave without complaining about something, did you? Will someone please explain the Dulles Toll road to me? You can travel from Dulles airport directly to Washington DC for free, but get off in the middle and you pay a toll? I smell a loophole in all of this! WAACE AtariFest 1990 by Scott Lapham ==================================== Ctsy CompuServe AtariArts Forum I'll start this article out with a one-word first impression of the show: WOW. Having been to the last two or three WAACE AtariFests held at Fairfax High School, the professional look of this one at the Sheraton Reston really impressed me. I think it's the kind of image Atari needs to make a comeback in the U.S. I spoke to some of the organizers as I was getting ready to leave at about 3:30 P.M. and was told their best guess on attendance f the day was 1500. Yes, that's one thousand, five hundred! Not bad. The official total was to be announced at the 8:00 P.M. banquet. I don't know how accurate the number is, but it certainly was crowded the six hours I was there. Let's hope tomorrow is as busy. Now on to the show. There was one very large room that held most of the vendors and eight smaller rooms for specialized topics such as education, Mac and IBM emulation, midi, games, DTP & productivity, a swap meet, users groups and the seminars. Very nice layout. Especially with the large turnout. I didn't get to talk to every vendor today, but those I missed I'll try to talk to for tomorrow's report. I'll start with what I thought was the most impressive booth: Gadgets by Small. Now I don't even own a Mac emulator (and I don't work for Dave Small), but he sure had the STuff to look at!! Would you believe a MegaST 4 with 12 megabytes of RAM and running at 18 megahertz!?! I actually played with it, too! Boy did that thing fly! And Dave said he hasn't even "tweaked" it yet and should be able to get it faster! It was equipped with Dave's new 68030 board with 8MB of RAM installed. That, along with the 4 megs of the Mega, made up the 12. This may be the way to go if you just want blind speed and don't need the extras the TT has. No, it's not available yet (nor is the price), but Dave says he will be marketing it in the future. He also had Spectre GCR running on a TT and a Telsa coil demo at his booth. If you're going to be at the show tomorrow, and missed the Gadgets booth today, make sure you take the time to check it out. D.A. Brumleve was there with the latest versions of all her great KID programs: KIDPublisher Pro 6.2, KIDGrid 1.6, KIDPainter 2.3a and a new one (to the public) called Telgram (already at version 2.5) that allows kids to send each other "telegrams", complete with music. Debonair Software was represented by J. Andrzej Wrotniak and was showing a new version (1.3) of ElCal, the math machine. Star Base v1.02, a complex astronomy program, was also on display. Mr. Wrotniak informed me that the public domain versions of these two programs (SubCal and Star 2000) would be uploaded to CompuServe sometime this weekend, so look for them. Goldleaf Publishing, Inc. had version 1.1 of Wordflair for sale at their booth, although you couldn't upgrade version 1.0 at the show even if you had brought along your original disk. The upgrade is only available by mail. I was told Wordflair 2 would be available right after Comdex with LOTS of new features. HiSoft was there showing Lattice C version 5 (not related to version 3) and a new version of their Devpac ST assembler. They wanted everyone to know that they were still supporting the ST, even though Michtron, who was distributing their products, has decided not to continue to carry them anymore. They will also be supporting the TT. NeoDesk 3 was available at the Gribnif Software booth to both new and old users. Upgrading was available to registered user "while-u-wait". They seemed to be pretty busy every time I passed by. Joe Waters of Current Notes was there selling his magazine and wanted everyone to know that his entire public domain or Spectre software libraries are now available on 44 meg cartridges. Branch Always Software was upgrading Quick ST II to version 2.2 and mentioned that Quick ST III was still in the works. For those of you that didn't get a manual with Quick Tools, it was available at the show. I got mine and it looks like it will really help me to use all the great programs in this package. A newcomer, Frontier Software, was attending their first U.S. show today. They were selling a cartridge-type clock called "Forget-Me-Clock II" which allows other cartridges to be plugged into it so the cartridge slot isn't lost when using the clock. They also had a product called the "Xtra-RAM STe Solder-Free RAM Upgrade" that looked good. For you entrepreneurs out there, they mentioned that they are looking for dealers and/or distributors in the U.S. for their products. Go for it. Double Click Software had new version of both DC Desktop and DC Utilities and were upgrading at the show. The new versions are 1.2a for Desktop and 2.0 for Utilities. If you have older versions of these programs, upgrade them. They have been extensively improved. Talon Technologies had LOTS of SuperChargers for sale. And at a reduced price for the show. They included the new version 1.4 of the software too, which they were also upgrading for anyone that had earlier versions. TC Power was being shown which allows you to use your Atari's RAM as expanded memory and 64K of extended memory. A software upgrade to OmniSwitch was also available for a reasonable price. Of course Codehead Software was there with lots of STuff. All the latest versions of their software was available to be sold or upgraded. Two new programs were being shown too: CodeKeys! (customized mouse and keyboard macros for any program) and LookIt! & PopIt! (a file viewer/ binary editor & desk accessory that lets you assign "hot keys" to your DA's). If you need to know if you have the latest version of any Codehead program, they are: CodeKeys!-1.1, LookIt! & PopIt!-1.0, G+Plus -1.3, MultiDesk-2.1, HotWire-2.3, MaxiFile-2.0, CodeHead Utilities-Rel. 3 and MIDIMAX-1.3. Data Innovations was showing version 2.11 of their excellent hard drive backup program Diamond Back II. They were upgrading at the show also. 3 in 1 College & Pro Football and Basketball, the Pro Game was selling too. The Atari Corp. booth was pretty busy. It had STE's on display running demo's to show off the colors and sound. Quite impressive. One area was reserved for the Portfolio and was displaying two new products: the Portfolio PC Card Drive (HPC301) which lets your desktop PC read and write to Atari Portfolio Memory Cards, with data exchange happening in an instant; and a Finance Card, which turns your Portfolio into a financial genius with amortization schedules, break-even analyses, compound investments and depreciation alternatives. There were lots of other vendors and I hope to talk to them all tomorrow. Look here for another report. But before I finish, I did attend one seminar which I'd like to report on today. The Bob Brodie and "Atari Corporation: Live!" seminar. This was kind of a special day for Bob as it was his 1 year anniversary with Atari. Also, the WAACE AtariFest 1989 was the first show he attended in his current job. He spoke about his first Atari system (a 400) and his current one (Mega ST 4). About how he first discovered "users groups". He got quite a response when he told one particular story of his early days as Users Group Coordinator. Seems he told his bosses that his policy was to always tell the public the "truth" and nothing but the "truth". When questioned by his superiors why he thought this policy would work, Bob replied, "Because you never tried it before." Let's hope Bob stays around for a long time! WAACE ATARIFEST 1990 - DAY 2 by Scott Lapham Ctsy CompuServe AtariArts Sig First off, I'd like to apologize to all of the people that I didn't write about in yesterday's article who were at the show and showing/ selling a product. I tried to get to everyone but was not successful. I'm kind of new at this and hope I'll do better (if asked) in the future. It was hard trying to concentrate on writing the article and seeing all the things that were there to see. The second day of Atarifest 1990 was much less crowded than the first day, but I didn't hear too many people complaining. Overall, the vendors were very pleased with the show and from more than one perspective. They liked selling all the products (of course), but a lot of them also mentioned how nice the people were. Words like "pleasant" and "enthusiastic" were often used. One vendor said it was nice to be at a show without "Atari-bashers" everywhere. I'll second that motion. Here are some quotes from day 2 on sales: "We did about the same as last year", L&Y Electronics; "We sold out of all the SuperChargers we brought. On a scale of one to ten, I'd give the show an 8", Talon Technologies; "This was the second best show I've ever been to (behind Toronto)", Branch Always Software; "Our first day here was better than all of last year", ISD Marketing; "Much better than last year...close to best show ever", CodeHead Software; "First day was 50 percent better than last year", Debonair Software; "Best show this year...better than last year", D.A. Brumleve; "Excellent, although it helps to debut a new product", WizWorks; "About the same as last year", Current Notes; "Very good...about the same as Glendale, which was the second best show this year (behind WOA)", Zubair Interfaces, Inc; "Very good...as good as Glendale, which was best ever", Gribnif Software; "Great...better than last year", Joppa Computers; "Not quite as good as last year", Best Electronics; "Good...made more contacts than expected and almost sold out of product", Frontier Software (their first U.S. show); "Great...did lots of updates", Data Innovations; "I wasn't selling but all my fliers about the 68030 board are gone...lots of interest shown", Gadgets by Small; "Good show...best this year", Double Click Software. The above said, it wasn't ALL positive. There were a few complaints about the lack of chairs for the people working the booths. Made for a long day. And bigger booths were mentioned too. On the flip side of that, Darek of BRA said WAACE did "an incredible job". He said they sent "lots" of updates to vendors to keep them on top of what was going on before the show. He rates it best in organization and advertising this year and thinks WAACE deserves applause. Before I go, I'd like to mention a few things from the "Atari Corporation: Technically Speaking" seminar. Ken Badertscher (the "TOS god" according to Bob Brodie) felt the day was right for some "true confessions". He said the resolution bug in STE TOS (1.6) "may" have been caused by some people working long and hard one weekend to get 1.6 out the door and "maybe" some of TOS 1.4 code got mixed up with it when being put together. He said TOS 1.62 fixes this but doesn't know if 1.62 will be available to the public soon or ever. Also, he said the DMA problem with the STE "may" have been caused by someone putting in the wrong chip at the factory. Even if true, it's not happening anymore. Enough of "true confessions". He also said that a new GDOS (which supports scaleable outline fonts) was for real. Sounds like good news to me. When asked if UIS-III, QuickST, etc. would ever be included in a version of TOS, the answer was N-O. Too expensive. Oh, well. I'll end on a note you "insiders" may enjoy; How much memory does it take to open a VDI workstation? Answer: 3K. (hmmmm...it got lots of laughs at the show?!) Cheers. WAACE ATARIFEST 1990 ==================== Ctsy GEnie ST RT Cat 11 Topic 6 Category 11, Topic 6 Message 121 Sat Oct 06, 1990 DARLAH [RT~SYSOP] at 18:03 EDT The show has been really busy. I am not sure of the numbers. The door people say there has been about 1200 to 1500 registered but I thought it felt like a whole lot more. I know the developers that I talked to were all very happy. The booths packed where developers had a hard time getting back into their own booths. I am impressed with the quality of the show and am glad that they held it in this sort of environment. Dave Small really did show his Tesla coil. I even helped in holding the various light bulbs. I couldn't believe that he brought it. The guy is a kick and proved to be a highlight of the show. GEnie was showing Aladdin for the ST. The general public should see this one VERY soon. It will not only automate your time but save you the much needed $$ that we all need to do with the holidays coming up. Numerous developers were available at the show. I think everyone that is on the list J.D.BARNES uploaded earlier in this thread showed. Not one commented negatively. Category 11, Topic 6 Message 133 Mon Oct 08, 1990 J.MEEHAN3 [Joe] at 07:50 EDT Just Back from WAACE (an 8 hour drive with no sleep) Some quick notes, Two 030 boards at the show, working! Estimated delivery late 1990? Two TTs seen working! A Hyper Card sort of program for the ST. Aladdin Working - I had a chance to play with it a little and it looks great. Thanks GEnie and Tom Purves (sorry Tom about the spelling) Aladdin, a special program to do all you want to do on GEine easier and quicker (save$) should be available later this week for download. Only charge will be for download. Watch for an announcement in the ST RT banner. Many thanks to all the hard working WAACE people and all those who put this very professional and fun show together. Thanks for the tickets Russ. Charles Johnson gave a great speech at the dinner Sat night. How about posting the text in the library? I have my copy but I am sure that others would be interested. Category 11, Topic 6 Message 134 Mon Oct 08, 1990 NEVIN-S at 09:30 EDT The WAACE show was GREAT. It was my first show displaying Tracker/ST and as a vendor I was very happy. I met a bunch of my registered users, and had a lot of success selling both to the general public and to the stores that had booths at the show. I think all of the other vendors were very happy as well. Since I was at the Step Ahead Software booth all day I didn't really have a chance to see much else. Gadgets and Jim Allen each had their own separate 68030 boards (at different booths). They both seemed nice. CodeHead was doing blockbuster business and there were always a bunch of people at the Gribnif booth. Joppa introduced a Fax system for the ST. Mr. HyperLink came down from Canada to introduce his product (but I did not see his speech). Nathan was at the Toad Computer booth showing folks the entire Calamus line. The happiest area of the show seemed to be the Dorothy Brumleve table next to the WizWorks/Dr. Bob table. There were always a few young folks using KidPublisher Pro and smiling, and people lined up to use MugShot and check out Image Cat. Lots of folks got videotaped (including me) for a Mug Shot compilation disk. That 2 table area was definitely hopping. Charles speech was very good and it has already been uploaded as part of ST Report. Neil Harris was at the show and he looked great. I think working at GEnie (not working for Atari??!!) agrees with him. Darlah looked more beautiful than ever and was showing Aladdin with help from Jeff Williams and author Tim Purves. Dan McNamee had SoftSource running on a Moniterm. I did not have a chance to go to any of the seminars. But the show was definitely a success. The hotel was nice, the exhibition space was good, the crowds were good, people were in a good mood and no shots were fired. <grin> Category 11, Topic 6 Message 135 Mon Oct 08, 1990 ISD [Nathan] at 15:45 EDT It was a great show. The organization by WAACE was excellent and let me add my congratulations to their chairman, Russ Brown for the superb job. All the Developers enjoyed themselves without exception. We all met lots of our customers and there was an excellent turnout overall. The response to Aladdin was great. I might also add that at one point Eric Rosenquist of Steno/Stalker fame manned one of the GEnie stations showing off his product as well. Eric came down from Ottawa, more than a few hour drive. :-) Bob Brodie talked to a packed house. The room held 216 seats. Every seat was taken and then so were all the walls. :-) Can he pack them in. :-) Let me also thank all those of you that attended the Calamus seminar that I put on. It wasn't quite as packed as Bob's as there were maybe a few dozen empty seats, :-) but there were more than enough to make for an interesting discussion. Thank you to all that attended. The banquet was packed. Not an empty seat in the place and Charles' speech was highly entertaining. One excerpt comes to mind, something about picturing Jim Allen as the white rabbit in Alice in Wonderland. Those that have met the diminutive Jim, imagine him in a bunny suit if you will. :-) I'm sure that many other posts will appear in the next few days so I will leave it to those more erudite than I to fill you in. Great show Russ, thanks!! /// KIDPUBLISHER PROFESSIONAL ----------------------------- ST DTP Program For Young Writers! by Penny Ormston (Reprinted from the Puget Sound Atari News, September 1990) I was quite surprised when I looked in the mail last week and discovered a package from Jim Chapman. I was even more surprised when I saw what was in it; a copy of Kidpublisher Professional and a request for a review! Well, I like good surprises. Kidpublisher Professional comes with one red disk, a red registration card, an Instruction manual for Parents and Teachers, an instruction sheet for the kids, and four extra disk labels for your own copies. There is no copy protection on the disk, and you are encouraged to make as many copies as you need. CUSTOMIZING There is an installation program on the disk that allows you to customize each disk. One selection offers either 5 or 10 pages of text and pictures in memory, depending on preference and computer memory. The pages will then be automatically loaded along with the program. The installation program also allows/disallows a LOAD function. With the load option, other sets of pages can be entered from the program. These loaded pages must come from a separate disk and have several large alert boxes to make the disk-swapping easier for youngsters. You can also allow/disallow a TITLE option with the installation program. The Title option prints out a title page without a picture that includes a story title, author and artist credits, all centered on the page. The last option available with the installation program is the QUIT function. This allows you to exit to the desktop after saving your work. USING KIDPUBLISHER PROFESSIONAL --The Drawing Board The drawing screen for Kidpublisher Professional is very similar to Kidpainter. However there are no colors, only 10 fill patterns (including solid black), and there is no text option. As with Kidpainter, the drawing program in Kidpublisher is very easy to use. There are usually several children at my house every day (aside from my own four), so there were many eager hands to try this program out. They had fun drawing their pictures with Kidpublisher Professional, although there were several times when someone would complain about the lack of color. I can understand the lack of color, it is a publishing program and the color would not show in the printout anyway. What I did not understand was the limit of only 10 fill patterns, and the absence of text on the picture area. The text option alone would add considerable versatility to the program, allowing a title at the top of a page, cartoon-like dialog boxes, etc. Instead the picture can only be a picture. There are functions for circles, boxes, lines, and free drawing which all work in the usual way. There are erasers in three different sizes for erasing large areas to tiny specks. There is an UNDO function for correcting mistakes, and a BLANK function to erase the entire screen. The entire drawing program is extremely user friendly. Even the children who were unfamiliar with computers or with using a mouse had no difficulty using the program. --The Text Screen The text screen allows you to type in text up to seven lines of thirty- three characters each. This is not very much to someone like me who is always locked into verbose mode, however none of the children who tried it found it limiting at all. There is an underline function to underline key words, but none of the children tried it. There is a FONT function which allows you to change fonts. There are four built in fonts and the option to create your own font, but a DEGAS-compatible paint program must be used to create it. Only one font is allowed at a time, but the kids didn't mind that either. When a font is changed, it doesn't mess up the layout of the text, which is nice. Typing in the text is very simple, and the program automatically word- wraps at the end of each line. Each space on the "page" is shown and the mouse can be used to move the cursor to an exact line and space on the page. If the cursor is moved in front of some text, any new text is automatically inserted at the cursor position. Likewise, if delete is pressed the cursor is moved one space to the left and any text following the cursor is also moved one space to the left. All in all, the text portion of the program is extremely simple and very easy to use even for young children. PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER The layout of pages for Kidpublisher Professional are always the same. The top half of the page is the picture and the lower portion is the text. There is no way to change this format, and there is no way to add text to the top portion of the screen. There is a form included with Kidpublisher Professional to get a text only program, similar to Kidpublisher only with text on the entire page, but you must send in an additional $10 for this program. It would have been much better if it had been included instead. Page numbering is optional, but is limited to the 5 to 10 set in the Installation program. If you have something saved as page 3 and you want it for page 1 there is no way to change this. Even if you are very careful when setting up the pages, you are out of luck if your story goes beyond page 10. (If you want the pages numbered, that is). I found it better to just leave off the page numbering. In spite of the limitations I have stated above, I can forsee many uses for Kidpublisher Professional. The kids already like using it to write short simple stories, or to teach things. It can make nice additions to normal letter writing, so that even the usually non-writing children can add something personal. I plan on using it with my sunday school class to make handouts for special lessons, or leave the top portion blank so the children can draw a picture to go along with some prewritten text. The very things that make it limiting also make it fast and easy to use. D. A. Brumleve P.O. Box 4195 Urbana, IL 61801-8820 (217) 337-1937 /// GADGETS BY SMALL'S 68030 BOARD ---------------------------------- A MEGA 12 AT 18.4 MHZ!!! ---------------------- Messages captured from the GEnie GADGETS RT reprinted by permission Category 2, Topic 25 Message 185 Mon Oct 08, 1990 STACE [RT SysOp] at 19:36 EDT After the WAACE show this last weekend it is now no secret that both Fast Technology (Jim Allen) and Gadgets by Small (Dave Small) are working on 68030 boards INDEPENDENT from one another. I have been informed that the 030 board that Gadgets showed at WAACE also contained 8 megs of on-board RAM (boosting a Mega 4 to 12 megs of RAM total) as well as a 68882 math co-processor. The unit shown at WAACE was running at 18mhz. Mark ------------ Category 2, Topic 25 Message 187 Tue Oct 09, 1990 G.RICHARDSO1 [G.RICHARDSON] at 08:10 EDT Mark, I can give you more info on the 68030 board, but I'm kind of biased and won't compare it to Jim's board (since I designed Dave's *grin*). The Gadgets 68030 is currently a Mega only expansion board that replaces the 68000 in your machine. Remove the 68000, put in a socket, pull the TOS chips from the motherboard and plug in the '030. No other wires or connections are required. There is no "68000 compatibility mode", although most stuff that doesn't depend on the 68000 stack size should work. For those of you with 520's, 1040's and Ste's, after this board is on the market, Gadgets hopes to market reduced implementations for your machines. Now the specs: The board is completely asynchronous to the ST bus, which means we can run it from a minimum of about 16.2mhz anywhere up to a possible max of 33mhz. At the time of the show we only had 16 mhz 68030 chips, but were running them at 18.4mhz. More speed, more cost seems to be the only limit so far. The board has TOS 1.6 on board. Atari has committed to licensing TOS 1.6 to Gadgets for use in the board. This is required because earlier TOS's were not processor independent. The board has a socket for a 68881/68882 math co-processor. There is also a full 32 bit expansion bus connector on the card. Unlike the TT which has only a 16 bit VME bus, the '030 has a connector which brings all the 68030 processor signals out for use by expansion boards. I'm afraid to talk about all the ideas that have been proposed for using this bus. Now the gotcha: The board has no cache outside of that inside the processor. Why? Because it can have up to 8 megabytes of high speed ram that supports 68030 burst mode for up to 0 (yes ZERO) wait states! This is the equivalent of the TT FastRam. It cannot support video or DMA (same as TT) but any programs run from Fast ram are more than just fast. Let's say that you're running at exactly 16 mhz and your friend has a 16 mhz 68000 board with cache. Both boards have a clock cycle of 62.5 ns. The 68000 board requires 4 clocks for one access. Assuming that all the information required is in the cache, to access 4 long words (32 bit wide) would take 32 clocks or 2000 ns. On the 68030 board only 2 clocks are required for an access to the 32 bit wide fast ram. And in burst mode the next 3 accesses can be done in 1 clock each! So, with one wait state on the 1st access (3 clocks) and no waits on the next 3, (3 more clocks) the total access time would be 6 clocks or 375 ns! That's 5.33 times as fast as ANY 68000 accelerator at the same clock speed (and the board can go more than twice as fast as the fastest 68000), and 10.66 times the speed of the standard ST at 16 mhz. Who needs a cache? George Richardson Biased Designer Merlin's Associates ------------ Category 2, Topic 25 Message 194 Wed Oct 10, 1990 T.GREENE at 21:16 MDT George - You gave a startling performance comparison between your 030 board and the basic 68000. Would the 030 have to be executing specific 030 instructions to perform the memory move in so few cycles? I doubt that much 030 specific software will ever show up for the ST. ------------ Category 2, Topic 25 Message 195 Thu Oct 11, 1990 DAVESMALL at 00:35 EDT Nope, that's executing plain-Jane 68000 code. That's why the 68030 is such a screamer when running in our system -- the way George did it. We'll be posting benchmarks as soon as we're done with the system software end. The board is very, very strong. We now have 33 Mhz 68030 chips and can start getting into third gear with the system, and the fastRAM support really isn't all that bad to code up. I don't perceive that as a time factor. Interest at the show was extreme. We gave out three boxes (the big Xerox ones that hold two 8 1/2" reams of paper side by side, a foot deep) of literature in *one day* -- and I can tell you, the board has nose prints on it from being looked at so closely. The wonderful thing about fastRAM, to me, is that it's 8 megabytes of RAM that runs at warp speed (the realistic limits are WAY above 16 mhz) and the video contention inside the ST doesn't strangle things. Good stuff! Anyway, this was the world-wide debut of the board, and we're happy it's done. (Chuckle: I toasted George at a dinner Friday night. Next table over in the restaurant were some ST people, including Gordon and Ralph -- you should have heard the dead silence when I congratulated George on the 68030 board being done!) We have some software to do, and George has normal cleanup on the board to polish off, then we're set. Price cannot be set until we get quantity pricing on parts. But we'll keep you up to date. Incidentally, yes, we split with Jim Allen during the summer, and are trying to keep things amicable between us. The comparisons between the two boards ought to be quite interesting -- especially depending on who writes them! -- thanks, all / Dave / Gadgets p.s. Mega-12/68030. Now that's a machine. ------------ Category 2, Topic 25 Message 196 Thu Oct 11, 1990 J.ALLEN27 at 01:37 EDT Those ram access figures are quite impressive George, congratulations. For comparison the MacIIci is a 25Mhz machine that runs burst cycles of 5,3,3,3 or 560ns for 4 longwords. They are using 80ns nibble mode rams but still use a cache to get another 30% out of the system, sounds like you've beat them!!! --------------------- ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Z*NET Atari Online Magazine is a weekly publication covering the Atari and related computer community. Material contained in this edition may be reprinted without permission except where noted, unedited and containing the issue number, name and author included at the top of each article reprinted. Opinions presented are those of the individual author and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the staff of Z*Net Online. This publication is not affiliated with Atari Corporation. Z*Net, Z*Net Atari Online and Z*Net News Service are copyright (c)1990, Rovac Industries Incorporated, Post Office Box 59, Middlesex, New Jersey 08846-0059. Voice (908) 968-2024, BBS (908) 968- 8148 at 1200/2400 Baud 24 hours a day. We can be reached on Compuserve at PPN 71777,2140 and on GEnie at address: Z-Net ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Z*NET Atari Online Magazine Copyright (c)1990, Rovac Industries, Inc.. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ -- Kevin Steele (aj205.Cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
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