Z*Net: 23-Aug-91 #9135From: Bruce D. Nelson (aj434@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 08/25/91-12:32:02 AM Z
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From: aj434@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson) Subject: Z*Net: 23-Aug-91 #9135 Date: Sun Aug 25 00:32:02 1991 =========(((((((((( ==========((( ==(( ==((((((( ==(((((((( =========== ================(( ====(( ====(((( =(( ==(( ==========(( ============== =============(( =====(((((( ==(( (( (( ==((((( =======(( ============== ==========(( ==========(( ====(( =(((( ==(( ==========(( ============== =========(((((((((( ==========(( ==((( ==((((((( =====(( ============== Z*NET INTERNATIONAL ATARI ONLINE MAGAZINE Issue #91-35 August 23, 1991 Publisher/Editor: Ron Kovacs Editor: John Nagy Z*Net Pacific: Jon Clarke Correspondent: Mike Brown ======================================================================= * CompuServe: 75300,1642 * Delphi: ZNET * GEnie: Z-NET * * Internet: 75300,1642@Compuser.Com * Z*Net BBS: (908) 968-8148 PCP:NJBRN FNET NODE: 593 ======================================================================= CONTENTS Z*NET NEWSWIRE DIGEST.................................... ST BOOK REVISITED...........................Donald Thomas Z*NET PACIFIC WORLD TOUR - PART 3..............Jon Clarke FOREM DISCOUNT COUPON.................................... ISD CONTEST.................................Press Release ANTI-PIRACY MOVEMENT..................................AUA SUMMERTIME READS - ATARILAND STYLE..............Andy Eddy Z*NET NEWSWIRE PRESS DESK..................Press Releases ======================================================================= Z*NET NEWSWIRE DIGEST --------------------- ======================================================================= 8/17/91: Dolch Computer is introducing the first implementation of Intel's 50 MHz '486 processor in a portable computer. 8/19/91: Seagate unveils a new 3.5-inch disk drive that defines new performance and capacity standards for one-inch high products. The ST3600 drives include two models, which feature a 525 and 426 formatted megabytes of storage capacity. 8/19/91: User Group coordinators announce that Atari has finally signed contracts and the Chicago Computerfest is on for November. 8/19/91: Lotus begin shipping 1-2-3 for Windows. The spreadsheet will be available from Lotus resellers starting Sept. 3. 8/20/91: A Michigan teenager sues Nintendo and Toys R Us saying a wrist injury she suffered was caused by playing home video games. 8/20/91: Autodesk announces that its 3-year-old anti-piracy program has recovered more than $5 million from parties who have illegally copied its programs. 8/20/91: Epson introduces the LQ-1070 wide-carriage printer, the latest in a new line of 24-pin models that produce scalable fonts and enhanced graphics. Other features include a new case design, faster speeds, four paper paths and suggested retail price of $699. 8/21/91: Borland begins shipping Turbo C++ & Turbo Vision, a programming language product comprised of Borland's Turbo C++ compiler and Turbo Vision for C++, an application framework to streamline software development. 8/23/91: Steve Jobs appointed by President Bush to the President's Export Council, the national advisory committee on international trade. 8/23/91: Atari announces availability of new Lynx game machine from it's Entertainment division in Illinois. 8/23/91: Atari is in full force at the Dusseldorf Computer Faire in Germany. ======================================================================= ST BOOK REVISITED ----------------- by Donald Thomas ======================================================================= I have mentioned the forthcoming Atari STBook in some messages and have obtained some spec sheets from Bill Rehbock just before he left today to take two of them to a big show in Germany. Bill says I may share them with you. Specifications are always subject to change and I may leave some out that I consider most "changeable", but having said that, they're pretty solid. (Just tryin' to cover my bases). Let me say first that STBook and the Portfolio are as marketably different as they are the same. The STBook appeals to an established worldwide market of Atari ST/Mega users by sharing OS compatibility. I am campaigning that it can also be perceived as a step up product from the Portfolio in that it offers superb lightweight productivity, access to thousands of established software programs, but also as much share ASCII files with other computers as the Portfolio can through the Serial Port. On with the specs . . . This new laptop entry by Atari sports an 8.5" x 11" footprint, is only 1.4" thick (37mm) and weighs only 4.3 lbs. A 7 "AA" battery pack is provided for 10-12 hours of operation. An optional rechargeable battery pack will be available which recharges in just 2 hours while the computer is running. It offers MIDI IN/OUT ports (another musicians dream in the Atari collection), RS232 Serial port, Parallel port and a floppy disk/ACSI DMA port for an external drive, hard disks, CD-ROM, lasers, etc. Built-in hard drive capacities include the options of 40, 60, 80 and 100 mb. The highly defined LCD screen offers 640x400 resolution (mono) and it has a 3 voice, programmable sound generator. The specs say 84/85 key keyboard (?) which partially consist of 10 function keys and 4 cursor keys. There is a connector for a standard size Atari keyboard and an option for an external 18-key numeric keypad. Those not familiar with the Atari OS should know that it is graphics based (as easy as a MAC [I think easier]) which means that point and click mouse operations are intergral. The STBook introduces a unique new mouse alternative for portability. It has a built-in Atari pressure sensitive Vector-Pad(tm), using FSR technology. What that means is that the pad is not only directional sensitive, but pressure sensitive as well. The mouse moves faster, the harder it is tapped. It will be available with 1 or 4 MEG RAM and 512K ROM (enough for everyone?) and includes the popular Atari BLiTTER(tm) chip for faster graphics draws. An internal 2400 baud modem OR 9600 baud/fax modem will be available. The system archetecture is 68000 cpu based operating at 8MHz with a 32-bit internal bus, 24-bit external address bus and 16-bit external data bus. The expansion bus is a 120-pin full-function connector. I did not notice statements of built-in applications although there are hints of them as the computer may be set in sleep mode to monitor alarms and appointments. The operating system is already supported by thousands of professional, home and entertainment offerings. CompuServe supports the environment very well (Type GO ATARIPRO). All existing mono apps are instantly compatible. I urge interested developers to get in touch with Atari immediately. There is a wealth of development support in place for the platform and I think this will become quite a hot ticket. I do not have prices, but (like the Portfolio) Atari's trademark will always be associated to "Power Without The Price". I would be happy to answer what I can, but be forewarned that this is all I have in writing at this point. To contact Atari call (408) 745-2000 and ask for Developer Support. I am happy to help anyone too. Don Thomas CIS ID: 75300,1267 ST Book System Archetcture Motorola 68000 8mhz 1 or 4 meg of pseudo-static ram 512K Rom Blitter Expansion Bus, 120 Pin full function expanasion connection allowing access to the main CPU bus. Graphics: ST Hi-Res Sound: 3 Voices Standard Port: MIDI in/out Serial: Paralell Floppy Disk Drive DMA Data Storage: 40 Meg Hard Drive 19ms access Time Keybopard: 84/85 key 10 function four curser keyboard Optional external 18 key numeric keypad, Connector for standard Atari keyboard. Mouse: Atari pressure sensitive Vector-Pad using FSR Technology, Standard Atari mouse can be connected via optional external keypad. LCD Screen: 640x400 Mono, Reflective STN System Software: TOS in Rom with NewDesk Peripherals: Intenral fax/ data modem 3.5 DISK DRIVE MIDI SMPTE Adapator to be announced Power: 7AA Battery Pack Optionmal: Rechargeable Nycad Battery Pac with ac adapter Recharges in 2 hours while computer is running Also powers external floppy disk drive ======================================================================= Z*NET PACIFIC WORLD TOUR - PART 3 --------------------------------- by Jon Clarke ======================================================================= From London to Hong Kong via the Atari Mecca Germany. It was great in New York when I had to get from the World Trade centre to Newark Airport. 31 degrees Celsius and the sun shinning like blazes. I had spent the whole day at work. Now it was 5pm and I had to be at Newark Airport for the next leg of the trip to London. Well the guys at work suggested I hop onto Rail Transit service to Newark and get a cab from there. I wonder if this was the start of a travellers nightmare. I duelly arrived at Newark and caught a cab to the airport. The driver was great. He gave me a running commentary all the way seems I was from down-under. He wanted to know if I knew Crocodile (Hogan) Dundee, well you have to have a joke from time to time don't you. I reported to the airport desk and was allocated a seat. You would think that the airline personal would know how to spell locations like England or Great Britain. I am sorry to report this is not the case at the Continental Airlines counter. Where is EGLNAD ?? I hoped it was not a new social disease I had just received. Being such a hot day my tongue was hanging out for a drink. A simple request you would think. Well four counters later and me beginning me loose my cool I sat down to beer or two and a meal. These people in the service industry at the airports are a real scam. They get you into the place and give you little or no service and there is nothing you can do about it unless you have an Airline lounge card. (I do but not for the airlines at Newark, rats). It was onto the plane and we were in the blue yonder heading up over Boston over the pole towards England. Remember a few weeks ago I mentioned the plane with the drop bags? I am pleased to report this is a general fault with this airline as it (YEP) happened again. Five hours later I arrived at Gatwick in the UK and my last leg on Continental Airlines (Thank God). Now the local time in New York was 1am and here in London it was 8am. It does not take to much to realise I was tired as could be and was heading into another full day of work. Ten hours later I was asleep for two hours before the horde turned up to say "hi, lets hit the town." "What, Na I am asleep I am asleep" I kept saying. A few pubs, a meal and good tour of London later..... Boy these 30hr stints is getting a little over the top for me I am afraid either that or I am getting a little to old for this. I got some sleep and headed off to work the next morning. I was taken out to lunch by the chaps at the office and when we returned I decided to have a little peek at the local area. A few streets from the Bank I found a computer store (yes there is something about computers in here after all). To my surprise they even had an Atari 1040STe. I popped in and spoke to chap for a few moments. It appears he sells allot of STe's to the locals who quote "work in the city". As an aside here. In New Zealand our Atari product is the same as the English market right down to the UK keyboard layout. Now to be a little different the Mega and the STJ (my IBm cased ST) we use are both of USA extraction. So it was strange coming to grips with the layout again when I went to demo our BBS on a disk I had with me. A large part of my daily work is involved in Telecommunications with one network or another. While I was in our office in London I happened to see that they used the GEIS network for the BankLink nodes. So Jon being Jon I decided to pop onto GEnie and drop a few notes to Ron (MR Z*NET) and my flat mate in New Zealand. What with all the line noise I finally managed to get this done. This has to be a first for Z*NET and for GEnie but more on this next week when I get onto HongKong. Needless to say users in the UK have access to GEnie via the PDN or via the local GEIS nodes. Maybe we may see a few on GEnie over the next few months. London was great and with only a few hours remaining I headed off to Heathrow to catch a plane to Dosseldorf, Germany. I arrived just after dark and caught a cab into town and to the hotel. The hotel I was staying at was right in the middle of town with the "Old town" out one window and the "Bruadabarn"(SP) out the other. I decided to look at the old town before I sat down to do my reports on the UK. What a big mistake that turned out to be. I found a little pub amongst the many in the old town run by a few Irishman. Now with Guinness on tap I had to pop in and sample the brew. Several hours later and the address of every Atari store in the town I wandered back to the hotel. The reports were finally completed and it was time for that rare commodity sleep (It seems all I do is sleep, huh). I spent the next day with one of our Correspondent Banks. One of the highlights of my trip I might add. It was a very good insight into the working of the computer requirements of most firms in Germany. It was also enlightening to how they have made a mix of systems all talk to each other from Mac's to Vax's to an AS400. Hmm I dropped a note myself via their VMS Mailer. Yes it did arrive via 23 different sites. With the work over and being a lovely Friday afternoon I decided to find all the Atari stores that I had been given the previous evening. I found all the "Games Boys" everywhere but where were the Atari's? Ah I started to find them one by one. What shocked me was the ST and STe's were the same price as home but the Mega STe and TT's were about $NZ2000.00 cheaper. The software was cheaper and hey, this has to paradise. The sales people know everything about the Atari. I mean everything. (well the people I spoke to did) It was now time to catch a train to Frankfurt via the Rhine. What a trip this was. I can see why all the fairy stories, tales and the likes have stemmed from this part of the world. With castles still standing from the 11th century and with castles in the middle of the river it was the most breath taking part of my whole trip. A small point here for those of you like me who end up in places where English is not the first language. Keep your cool! I was sitting waiting for the train to arrive watching my Casio 2 inch TV when this uy asked me where the Laufthansa left from in perfect American. I think I shocked him even more when I said from here in ten minutes. You should have seen the sigh of relief when I responded in English. I got rid of my bags and met with my new found American friend, who like me was involved in computing as a job and also in the banking field. It was a small world indeed when we started to swap stories and tails. This was all taking place in the Hotel bar. I should point out that I had arranged to meet Michael Schuetz from the German magazine "PD Journal" and also the Z*NET Germany editor. Well there was this chap walking though the bar looking for a someone and I wondered if it was Mike. So I went to find him and ask. Well the guy had disappeared so I asked at the hotel desk if I had been paged and they said "Yes Sir, but the paging system does not work in the bar." "Rats" I thought. I have missed him. Then low and behold there was Mike. To cut a long story short we were soon heading off the home of "PD Journal". I did it again Ron (sigh). I went to get into Mikes car on the right side for me but the wrong side for you chaps! We headed off towards Frankfurt on the freeway / motorway called the Autobahn. I thought we were going a little fast when I looked at the speedo and saw we were doing 140KPH (90mph), opps what is the story here we were being passed as though we were standing still by other cars. It appears there is no speed limit on some of these roads. (My friend Chris is sitting here laughing at me as when he was in Germany he used to travel at about 200kph (125mph) all the time) Mike lives in a lovely house, all three stories of it and just what I have seen in magazines and on the Tele over the years. The top story is devoted to his hobby, Atari. There all lined up was a collection of Atari's, Hardisks and a stereo system with enough CD's to last me a lifetime. Mike runs with a few friends the "Atari PD Journal" which is a glossy Atari computer magazine. I have for many years now read another German magazine on a regular basis called "CT", but Mikes magazine leaves this for dead. If you can get this in your local town I strongly suggest you get "PD Journal" as it well worth it. Mike is also doing allot of conversion work for various firms in the USA like the Codeheads and many more. I think you will see an article from Mike on this in the near future. Remember the 30 kilo's of magazines Ron and John donated to me? Well I left allot of them with Mike and in return collected some Atari PD Journals which now grace our book rack in the lounge at home. I would like to thank Mike for hospitality he extended and for allowing me to pollute his atmosphere. At 2:30am we headed back to the hotel and time for some more sleep. I had to catch the plane to HongKong in a few hours time. Next week. A computer Hackers(builder) Dream. HongKong. ======================================================================= Z*NET USER OFFER - FOREM DISCOUNT COUPON ---------------------------------------- Clip Out And Print Off ======================================================================= (clip here) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - *-*-*-*-* Special Discount Coupon Offer *-*-*-*-* For a limited time only you may use this special coupon order form to obtain your copy of the world's leading Atari ST BBS program. This offer expires September 15th 1991. To use this coupon just print this portion of this weeks Z*Net Online, fill out and mail. $10.00 off the regular price of FoReM ST with this coupon only!! Regularly $79.95 including shipping, only $69.95 with this offer. Your Name ____________________________________________________ Address ____________________________________________________ City/State/Zip _______________________________________________ Your voice phone _____________________________________________ Your BBS Name ______________________________________________ Mail completed coupon with $69.95 to: Stephen Rider 20 Cargill Ave Worcester MA 01610 Orders must be postmarked no later than 9/15/91 *-*-*-*-* Special Discount Coupon Offer *-*-*-*-* Z*NET 08239135 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - (clip here) ======================================================================= 2CD ANNUAL ISD CREATIVITY AND DESIGN CONTEST -------------------------------------------- Press Release ======================================================================= ISD Marketing, Inc. is proud to announce the second annual Creativity and Design Contest. Your entry may be once again either text, graphics or a combination of both. You may submit business card designs, logo's, fonts, freehand drawings, posters, illustrations, cartoons and graphical effects just to name a few examples, using any one of the Calamus family of products, including, Calamus, Outline Art, the Font Editor or any combination of the three. The contest will run effective August 20, 1991 until November 30, 1991. Winners will be selected from the files uploaded into our Email address on Compuserve at 76004,2246, Delphi at ISDMARKETING or GEnie at ISD or mailed directly to our offices at: ISD Marketing, Inc., P.O. Box 3070, Markham Industrial Park, Markham, Ontario, Canada L3R 6G4. Mailed entries must be postmarked no later than November 30, 1991 and received by us in-house by December 15, 1991 to qualify for entry. You must be a REGISTERED OWNER of either Calamus, Outline Art or the Font Editor in order to enter. (Note: If you have recently purchased any of these products but have not yet had the opportunity to send in your registration card, then please accompany your entry with your properly filled-in registration card.) You may enter as many times as you choose but any one individual may only win once. Although the author shall retain any copyrights to their entry, all winning files shall be considered 'publicly distributable files' and may be made available for downloading from CompuServe, Delphi and GEnie. As well, the winning entries will be published in Atari Explorer magazine, our official magazine sponsor, with the appropriate Author quoted and the prize won indicated. Following is the current list of contest prizes. It is possible that additional prizes will be added to in the near future. The winners will receive the following prizes: 1st Prize: $1,500.00 worth of AGFA Compugraphic fonts for use in either Calamus or Outline Art. 2nd Prize: Calamus SL 3rd, 4rth and 5th Prizes: $100 connect time credit from CompuServe, to be applied to your CompuServe account, GEnie applied to your GEnie account or Delphi, to be applied to your Delphi account. As well, Atari Explorer will provide one year subscriptions to each of our winners. The Judges for this contest include: Geoffrey Earle, General Manager of Atari (Canada) Corp., John Jainschigg (Editor) and Marc Needleman (Art Director) of Atari Explorer and Mario Georgiou (Graphic Artist) of ISD Marketing, Inc.. RULES: 1. The ISD Marketing, Inc. Creativity and Design Contest is a skill- based contest for any member who is a properly registered Owner of any of the Calamus family of products. Participation in this contest is open to residents of Canada, United States, Australia and New Zealand, providing that their Calamus product is the one published by Ditek International. Employees of CompuServe, Delphi, GEnie, ISD Marketing, Inc., Ditek International, DMC, Atari Explorer, Atari Corp. and all Atari Subsiduaries, SysOps, GameOps, their affiliates, subsidiaries, advertising agencies, and immediate families are ineligible to win prizes. This contest is subject to all local, state/provincial and federal regulations and is void where prohibited by law. All taxes are the sole responsibility of the winners. 2. From August 20, 1991 at 12:01 AM EST to November 30, 1991, 11:59 EST those who meet the above eligibility requirements can enter the contest. The files can be uploaded directly to the ISD Marketing Email accounts on CompuServe, Delphi or GEnie at ISD or submitted by mail directly to ISD at our mailing address indicated above. (Note: Entries will not be accepted by courier. Use regular mail only.) One winner and 4 runner ups will be named. 3. The decision of the judges is final and not reviewable by any other person, agency, or tribunal. Winners will be notified by CompuServe, Delphi or GEnie EMail and/or regular mail on or about December 31, 1991, and their names will be published online in the Atari Forums on CompuServe and Delphi, the Atari RT on GEnie and in Atari Explorer along with their winning submission. 4. This contest may be publicized outside those venues indicated above. No prize may be exchanged, substituted, modified, or redeemed for cash. Prizes are not transferable. Prizes won by entrants under the age of 18 will be awarded to the winner's parent or legal guardian. All prizes will be awarded and mailed to the winner's address contained in their Registration form. By acceptance of their prizes, winners consent to publication of their names, likenesses, and/or User ID without further compensation for advertising or promotional purposes. Prizes not claimed after 21 days of the day of notification, for any reason whatsoever, will be forfeited. Prize winners may be required to execute an affidavit of eligibility and publicity release within 21 days of notification. Non-compliance within this time period will result in disqualification and an alternate winner will be selected if possible. I wish all entrants the best of luck. Let the contest begin. Nathan Potechin President, ISD Marketing, Inc. August 20, 1991 ======================================================================= ANTI-PIRACY MOVEMENT 1991 ------------------------- From The Atari Users Association ======================================================================= Greetings Atari ST Enthusiasts, Many of you are already aware that software piracy in the Atari ST platform has reached epidemic proportions. Recently, an un-named individual, gained access to an alleged pirate BBS, a BBS set up for the sole purpose of collecting and distributing stolen commercial software, and captured his session to disk. He then uploaded the capture to the Z*Net BBS, node 593, for all to see. The contents of the text file was shocking and disappointing to read. Pirates will argue that the context was not of blatant piracy and that the talk going on in the captured messages was not of piracy and that nothing demonstrated was illegal. Then there are those of us who are intelligent enough to realize and understand that what we were reading was a cancer that has nearly destroyed the Atari ST software development progression and seriously damaged the possibility of a US advertising campaign by Atari Corp. I am not going to dispute what was present in the captured text files. That is too time consuming and has no end. The immature individuals who would argue that what we were reading was legal conversation are the same individuals who pirate software and do not think twice about it! Piracy, even in its most innocent state, is wrong and must be curbed immediately. The AUA up until this time has taken a rather passive, yet strong stance against software piracy. We have made information available to usergroups and individuals about the perils of software piracy and have for the most part of 2 years denounced piracy. But, after we reviewed the captured text from the supposed pirate BBS, we decided that it was time for someone to speak up, and since we have the largest voice of 1600 ST users, AUA seemed the most logical choice for noise. We have attached a form letter that we encourage you to read, sign, and mail to Atari Corporation and the International Association of Atari Developers (IAAD) to let them know that as conscious Atari ST users, we realize the need to begin a campaign against software piracy. Twenty-nine cents is all that we ask you to pledge to help begin this anti-piracy movement. For those who have not had the opportunity to review the mentioned text captures, we are making them available to everyone free of charge by sending a blank formatted disk and $1.00US (for postage and handling) to us and we will make sure that you get to see the shocking captures of how much piracy is taking command of the ST platform even as you read this. We will send you the latest copy of the NewsBriefs Disk Magazine dated August 1991 with all of the captures as our feature story. You will get a free copy of our magazine, and help to support our "ANTI-PIRACY MOVEMENT, 1991." ===================CUT HERE===================================== IAAD c/o Atari Corporation 1196 Borregas Avenue Sunnyvale, CA 94088-3427 Dear Sirs, I have seen ASCII captures of some of the pirate activities that have been occurring on Atari ST BBS systems and would like to express that I am both appalled and angry that such illegal activity is going on. While I realize that my voice is but a small one in a very large crowd, I believe that there is something that I can do to help put a stop to this crime. I am completely against any form of software piracy and wish to help in the fight to stop it all together and believe that it is time for Atari Corporation with the help of the IAAD, AUA, IADA, and SPA to bring these offenders to trial. Please give consideration to a multi-party united stance against software piracy at once! There are too many talented developers leaving the Atari ST platform because money is literally being stolen from their pockets. I believe that by combining forces, we can begin to curb software piracy and help the developers receive adequate compensation for their hard work. If there is anything that I can do as an individual, please let me know. Sincerely, YOUR NAME HERE Member of the AUA ===================CUT HERE===================================== I encourage you to print this letter, sign it, and get it in the mail to Atari as soon as possible. If I could make it easier for you to do or pay for your stamp, I would! If you have not seen the captures, and want to receive your free copy of the AUA NewsBriefs Disk Magazine, send $1.00US, blank formatted disk, and the following form to: The Atari Users Association Anti-Piracy Movement 1991 P.O. Box 123 Canonsburg, PA 15317 First Name:_____________________ LastName:______________________________ Address:________________________________________________________________ City:________________________________ ST:____ Zipcode:__________________ Country:_____________________________ Age:(optional)____________________ Telephone: __________________________ Occupation:_______________________ [ ] (Check here) Please find enclosed a blank formatted disk and $1.00 for postage and handling. Please rush to me a FREE copy of the AUA NewsBriefs Disk Magazine, August 1991 which contains the raw un- edited captures from alleged pirate BBS's. Show your support of Atari, Atari Developers, IAAD, AUA, IADA, and your local usergroup by mailing this letter to Atari! Your voice can make a difference!!!!! ======================================================================= SUMMERTIME READS - ATARILAND STYLE ---------------------------------- by Andy Eddy ======================================================================= The following article is reprinted in Z*Net by permission of AtariUser magazine and Quill Publishing. It MAY NOT be further reprinted without specific permission of Quill. AtariUser is a monthly Atari magazine, available by subscription for $18 a year. For more information on AtariUser, call 800-333-3567. (From the August 1991 issue of AtariUser Magazine) (Part One) [EDITOR'S NOTE: AtariUser originally planned to include a monthly guide to the contents of the major Atari support magazines. However, the only magazine that was willing to cooperate was STart, and of course, they are now history. So, we commissioned Andy Eddy, a magazine professional with Atari experience, to do an objective look at Atari publications. We promised a free hand, and he shared his opinions frankly. We didn't think it was quite right to include a review of AtariUser with these, so make up your own!] Flashback alert! Flashback alert! I have to be honest: When the editors of AtariUser approached me about doing an article on Atari- related publications, I was interested in the concept. After all, I cut my writing teeth doing reviews and articles for A.N.A.L.O.G., ST-Log, Antic, Compute!, Compute! ST and Atari Explorer. The box I was given was filled with different periodicals, all pertaining to the current market of Atari products. However, gone were most of the mags I worked for--A.N.A.L.O.G., ST-Log, Antic, Compute! ST, and now even STart are all pushing up daisies; Compute! changed hands and look when purchased by General Media (publishers of Omni and Penthouse); and ST World and Atari Explorer each took recent sabbaticals. I should have been prepared because the Atari world was always volatile, but looking through this Pandora's box of publications brought back many memories. And smiles. And agonies. Hey, I was there when the decision was made to kill the "Logs," and after nearly a decade of those magazines, it was hard to see it go. Yet, it's a necessary fear in the publishing world where most magazines fail and the average success story lasts about four years. I know, I know. You're saying, "Take this tissue, Eddy, and move on. Please?" Sorry. Enough whining. (Sniff.) On to the issues (pun intended) at hand. [All magazines are rated on a 5-STAR possible perfect score.] Atari Explorer 29-05 Broadway Astoria, NY 11106 (718) 545-2900 Frequency: Bimonthly Issue Reviewed: March/April 1991 Editorial Slant: Cautious company line. 4 STARS **** Summary--After a hiatus, Atari Explorer (AE) is back on the shelves again. The main "problem" is that the magazine is a collaboration between the editors and Atari itself, which can affect the objectivity of the publication. This, in fact, is one of the reasons for the interrupted service of AE--the editorial team of David Ahl and Betsy Staples was "released" after content disagreements with Atari. However, even a company mouthpiece can impart a lot of information to its readers about the products it covers, even if a grain of salt has to be given to its bias. Look and Feel--AE is a pretty good looking magazine, and the art director, Peter Kelley, explains the transition from the "old" AE in an article in the issue reviewed. Certainly, one of the biggest boosts to the readership is how they are using Atari computers and software to construct the magazine using DTP. The quality of this new technology is reflected in the layout, which is clean and functional; it's not hard to follow from page to page. The quality of the materials is good, too, using glossy paper that is comfortable to read and holds the ink without bleeding text and images. But a major mag like AE could benefit from more color. Lastly, two complaints: First, I felt that most of the graphics that did appear on the pages of AE were a bit too dark. Second, in the article on fonts--which went nearly 13 pages--I felt that too much room was taken up by demonstrations of various fonts in too large a point size. If the font demos were scaled down, it's possible that another article could have been put in. Writing and Editing--A primary function of an editor is to make the magazine flow smoothly. Some magazine editors make their "contributions" far too obtrusive, annoying the reader and pulling them away from the material. AE's editorial crew does a good job of staying in the background, letting the material speak for itself. Again, the content is clean and understandable. On the other hand, one of the highlights of any magazine is the people that get together to compose their personal opinions into a magazine. Especially in a product-specific magazine, it's nice to read articles by a particular writer from issue to issue, and see their style come through. Unfortunately, the use of bylines in AE is on-again, off- again. Bylines give a magazine personality, and the lack of bylines-- particularly on reviews, where personal opinions are strong--is disappointing. Utility--If there is one thing a company-overseen magazine can provide, it's utility. If you want information on a new product, the company mouthpiece should be the one to turn to. Sadly, this has been a problem with AE in the past, as Atari has kept the wraps on products until the last minute. This not only frustrates the editors, but it makes them look bad also. It appears that Atari is taking a better interest in passing info to the reader through AE, mixing articles on desktop publishing (DTP), games, Atari at CES and COMDEX and the STe as well as an interview with Greg Pratt (Atari's General Manager), among others. Also, all aspects of the Atari world are represented, with reviews and articles on the Lynx, ST and 7800 and Portfolio. Quite a mixture. A big complaint, though, is how much space is devoted to what could be considered esoteric material. Though DTP is gaining popularity with home-computer users, it still doesn't account for a majority of computer use. However, in one issue, AE devoted about 25 of its 80 pages--about 31%--to DTP and fonts. This isn't what I would consider the best tact for a general-interest computer magazine, especially a bimonthly. Worse, the production schedule of AE this year has been spotty enough to qualify as a tri-monthly. Overall Rating--Many of the complaints I had were issue-specific, and shouldn't be as much of an issue from month to month (or, really, bimonth to bimonth). Atari's influence will hopefully help AE get more breaking product news out. More often. 4 STARS. Current Notes 122 North Johnson Road Sterling, VA 22170 (703) 450-4761 Frequency: Monthly, except for January and August Issues Reviewed: December 1990, June 1991 Editorial Slant: The "everyman's" Atari magazine. 4.5 STARS ****1/2 Summary--Rivaling many of the nationally distributed Atari magazines, Current Notes (CN) is been in production for a while, and features one of the best mixes of material you can find. It features page after page of solid editorial. Look and Feel--CN is a perfect example of traditional magazine layout-- for the most part, three columns of text with a smattering of graphics-- that is comfortable and easy to read. It doesn't overwhelm the reader with lots of eye-catching images or too many fonts. It simply gets out the information without a lot of fanfare. Though CN's text is laser output, as told by its rough-edged characters, it is fairly clean and not that annoying. Sadly, CN also doesn't offer any color pages for its price ($27 for 10 issues), but, again, the Atari market's flakiness (sorry, kids) prevents extravagant spending in the production department. To its credit, CN has been around a long time by being careful and down-to-basics. The June issue featured perhaps the first full color cover ever on CN. Writing and Editing--One of the keys to a magazine is an identity. Not only does CN have a lot of independent articles, but also features a strong share of columns--particularly David Small (hacker extraordinaire from Gadgets by Small) and his views on the Atari community. Especially nice for Atari veterans is Ben Poehland's "8-Bit Alchemist" column. The editing is also good, though there are some minor annoyances, such as the use of double-hyphens instead of an "em" dash. Otherwise, CN editors do their jobs without drawing too much attention to themselves. Utility--What can I say? A CN I looked at had COMDEX coverage, an article on tax deductions for home computers, other product announcements, product reviews (commercial utilities and games, as well as shareware titles) and suggestions for Atari-related Christmas gifts, among others. This kind of blend is exactly what the reader wants, and what a product-specific publication should deliver. It's right there in black and white, literally. And the amount of advertising also is a testament to CN functionality. The issue reviewed for this article has the most advertising of any of the other American magazines. Cost of advertising is one thing, but readership is another. It's my guess that CN is grabbing advertisers due to its reader appreciation. Overall Rating--Current Notes is, simply put, a magazine by Atari users for all Atari users, which is reflected in its editorial package. It could use some movement into the modern age of publishing, but it's not a requirement. 4.5 STARS. EDITORS NOTE: Next week the conclusion.... ======================================================================= Z*NET NEWSWIRE PRESS DESK ------------------------- Press Releases ======================================================================= CONNECTICUT ATARIFEST 1991 Confirmed to attend as of 15-August-1991: o Atari Corporation (U.S.) o Atari Explorer o Fast Technology o TidBit Software o Gribnif Software o GEnie o Alternative Harware o Step Ahead Software o Fairfield Atari Computer Enthusiats o S.T.A.R.R. o BCS/Atari o South Shore Atari Group o Nashoba Valley Atari Users Show Information Location: Bridgeport Hilton Hours: 9:00am - 4:00pm 1070 Main St Bridgeport, CT Admission: $5.00 Date: September 7th, 1991 Free Parking For more information, contact: o GEnie: Email B.GOCKLEY or call 203-332-1721 or o Write: CT AtariFest '91, 18 Elmwood Ave. ***SEMINARS**DOOR PRIZES***DEMONSTRATIONS***HARDWARE***SOFTWARE***GREAT DEALS***PREMIER SHOWINGS***ATARI JOY* To: Business/Technology Media From: Connecticut Atarifest '91 Re: Upcoming Events Contact: Brian Gockley, Chairman, Connecticut Atarifest '91 203-332-1721 BRIDGEPORT, Conn. -- Hundreds of personal computer manufacturer, software developers and end-users, are making plans to attend the first Connecticut Atarifest, slated to run at the Bridgeport Hilton hotel on September 6th and 7th. Trade show organizers say the event, the first of its type in Connecticut, will be composed of two professional Desktop Publishing seminars on Friday, followed by a full scale trade show between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Saturday. The exhibition is being sponsored by Fairfield County and New Haven area Atari computer user groups and Computers Etc, a Fairfield computer dealer. Connecticut Atarifest is the first area computer show endorsed by Atari Corporation of Sunnyvale, Calif. Bob Brodie, Atari's Users Groups Services Manager, always full of suprises, is scheduled to appear as the keynote speaker. Another highlight will be an exposition by John Jainnschig, Publisher of Atari Explorer, a trade journal for Atari users produced on an Atari computer, and Nevin Shalit, President of Step Ahead Software, New York, NY, exhibiting the complexities of publishing magazines using computers. Other confirmed exhibitors are Fast Technologies Jim Allen, GFA BASICs John Barger, Good Backup Utilities Jeff Lomicka, Gribnif Software's Rick Flashman and many others. Visitors to Connecticut Atarifest will get a preview both days of the latest desktop publishing systems that enable them to go "Direct to Press" with creative ideas. Atari DTP systems were unveiled at this year's Corporate Electonic Publishing Show in Chicago, and are beingtouted in Europe, where Atari has competed more successfully and recieved more recognition than in the states. Representatives from Professional Systems Group will be on hand in Bridgeport to demonstrate the new Direct to Press equipment. Two sponsors of the upcoming Bridgeport show -- Fairfield Atari Computer Enthusiasts and ST Atari Road Runners (user groups) -- promise great buys on equipment, hands-on tips and chances to question experts while comparing products for Atari computers. FACE and STARR say there will be raffles, door prizes and pleasant surprises for those in attendence. Admission is just $5 which qualifies the holder for one of several door prizes that will be given away. For more information about attending or exhibiting at the Sept. 7 show, contact Connecticut Atarifest Chairman Brian Gockley at (203) 332-1721, or write: Connecticut Atarifest, 18 Elmwood Ave, Bridgeport, CT 06605 ATARI EXPLORER DISCOUNT OFFER ============================= Atari User Groups are the backbone of the Atari community, and an important resource for Atari owners in their areas. Likewise, you Atari owning CompuServe subscribers help support a valuable resource for information and exchange. In an important sense, the CompuServe Atari Forums are a User Group, too! Atari gains a lot from your efforts, and we're very grateful for your support. So, from now until December 31, 1991, Atari Explorer (the Official Atari Journal) wants to say "thank you" to Atari User Groups and CompuServe users all across the U.S., by offering a 33% discount on Atari Explorer subscriptions! That's right -- for just $9.95, you can get six big issues (one year, regular price $14.95) of Atari Explorer ($24.95 for 18 issues, three years, regular price $39.95). Or, if you already subscribe, we'll extend your subscription at the same low rates! To qualify, just provide the information on User Group membership (or CompuServe subscribership) requested on the subscription form, below! (Credit-card orders, call our customer-service line at (218) 723-9202.) And please, pass the word! (Offer limited to members in good standing of registered Atari User Groups, or CompuServe subscribers, who reside in the Continental U.S. Discounts are not additive (that is, if you're BOTH a member of a User Group AND a CompuServe subscriber, you STILL only get 33% off! Sorry!) Offer void after December 31, 1991.) Subscription Order Form I certify that I am a member in good standing of: (User Group Name) :______________________________________________ ... or a current subscriber to CompuServe Information Service (CompuServe ID -- NOT PASSWORD!) : ______________________________ (Your Signature): _______________________________________________ Yes! Please enter my subscription to Atari Explorer at the money-saving discount rate I checked below! ( ) $9.95 (One year, 6 issues) ( ) $24.95 (Three years, 18 issues) ( ) Payment Enclosed (Check or money order) Amt: _______________ ( ) Please charge my VISA/MasterCard Card Number: ______________________ Expires: ____________________ Signature: ____________________________________________________ Name: ____________________________________________________ Address: ____________________________________________________ City: ______________________ State: ____ Zip: ____________ Send to: Atari Explorer Discounts, P.O. Box 6488, Duluth, MN 55806 CHICAGO COMPUTERFEST BY ATARI IN HIGH GEAR ========================================== August 19, 1991 Atari Corp. (U.S.) Director of Corporate Communications, Bob Brodie, announced today that Atari U.S. President, Greg Pratt, has worked out an agreement with the Ramada Hotel O'Hare, and that the Chicago ComputerFest by Atari, November 23 and 24th 1991, is now officially the first directly Atari-sponsored computer show in North America. Atari Corp. has reserved over 20,000 sq ft in the Ramada Hotel O'Hare convention center for the main floor, a 300 person capacity general presentation hall, 6 demonstration/presentation rooms for vendor Q&A sessions, a dedicated "hands on" educational area, an "open gaming area" consisting of over 100 stations, and a dedicated 8-bit exhibitor area. The Chicago ComputerFest will be the first Atari-specific show in North America to feature not only the best of the Atari-specific developers, but other computer industry leaders such as Word Perfect, Hewlett- Packard, Motorola, Epson, USRobotics, Egghead Software, and Hayes. These industry leaders will be in attendance to demonstrate their latest products as well as answer technical questions about how their products work in the Atari environment. Atari themselves has promised that the exciting new products planned to be shown at Fall Comdex, will also be on exhibit at the Chicago ComputerFest just days later. Atari has committed to a full professional display at this show; Atari plans to bring 10 technical advisors and company representatives to the Chicago ComputerFest. Be prepared to "meet the people who make it happen". Special hotel rates for show attendees have been negotiated with the Ramada Hotel O'Hare. $60.00 a night based on double occupancy and $90.00 a night for suites (plus tax). Please call 708-827-5131 for reservations; you must mention "Chicago ComputerFest by Atari" to get these special rates. Each guest room includes Color Television, in-room movies, radio, direct dial telephone, climate control, and electronic minibar-snack service. The Ramada Hotel O'Hare features indoor and outdoor swimming pools, whirlpool, sauna, sunbed, massages, exercise room, electronic game room, 2 outdoor tennis courts, 9 hole-par 3 lighted golf course and jogging trails on 25 acres. The Ramada Hotel O'Hare is situated just outside the northeast gate to O'Hare International Airport, near the intersection of I-90, I-294 and I-190. There will be complementary airport limo service provided for hotel guests from all airport terminals. Admission to the Chicago ComputerFest by Atari will be $6.00 per day at the door. A two-day ticket set will be available through users groups for $10.00. The Educational Seminars and Open Gaming/Contest areas will require additional fees. For additional show information, exhibition space availability, program advertising rates, ticket sales, and information on the user group participation program, please contact us at: Chicago ComputerFest by Atari C/O LCACE P.O. Box 8788 Waukegan, IL 60079-8788 24hr Voice Hotline- 708-556-0682 XTRA-RAM DELUXE =============== Upgrade any ST using inexpensive SIMMs PDC proudly announces the release of the Xtra-RAM Deluxe, a SOLDERLESS memory upgrade board that works on all STs and uses new cutting edge technology. Xtra-RAM Deluxe allows ST users to upgrade their machines using inexpensive SIMM boards. Xtra-RAM Deluxe boards are fully compatible with all STs, including the older ones with weak MMUs (a special adaptor is included for those machines). The Xtra-RAM Deluxe retails for $169.95 (unpopulated, without memory) and is available through dealers nationwide. PDC is offering Xtra-RAM Deluxes at a special rate of $139.95 for a limited time. Also available are 2MB and 4MB versions at the special rate of $259.95 and $369.95 respectively. The Xtra-RAM boards are high quality memory upgrades that have been proven again and again with over 10,000 satisfed customers around the world. PDC 4320-196th SW, Ste. B-140 Lynnwood, WA 98036 206.745.5980 - Call if you have any questions 800.255.8220 - Call to place an order anytime NEW PALMTOP NEWSLETTER ====================== A new newsletter for palmtop users that will help, inform and magnify your use of your palmtop. And at a price that will make it affordable to justify. Take It With You, a newsletter dedicated to the palmtop user that wants to get the most out of their small wonder. Some of the things that you will find in each issue of Take It With You: - Tips and tricks: How to's, time savers and more - Real life examples: Read how others use their palmtops to keep organized and on top of things - Palmtop features: Regular segments on how a feature or function works an how to apply that feature to your lifestle and portable needs - Pictures and illustrations: Visualize a concept or how it should look on the screen - And much, much more! Take It With You will focus on the three most popular and widely used palmtops: - Sharp Wizard (OZ-8000/8200 models) - Atari Portfolio - HP 95LX - More to come in future issues! Some sample articles you will find on these three machines are: - To Do lists: How to be effective in getting it all done - Editing on the go: Fixing up those documents you typed on your palmtop - Number crunching on the run: Budget balancing for those quit last minute trips - And many more ideas on palmtop usage in the 90's Take It With You is published 6 times a year. And at $18 a year how can you pass up this information you need. The first issue will be published in October, So don't delay. Get your order in now! What's that? Your boss wants to see why $18 on a newsletter is important? You want to make sure this is what you want? Well, don't despair! The first issue will be offered as a trial issue, to see what kind of information will be covered. And the cost? Just $1.50 for the first issue. Such a deal! For your yearly subscripion (6 issues) of Take It With You, send $18, or if you want the first issue to take a peek, send $1.50 to: Perfecton Applied 454 West 1010 North Orem, UT 84057 Attn: Palmtop newsletter Please make checks payable to: Marty Mankins Checks, money orders or cashier's checks accepted. Sorry, but no credit cards yet. Act now. Trial issue offer ends November 15, 1991. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 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)1991, Rovac Industries Incorporated, Post Office Box 59, Middlesex, New Jersey 08846-0059. Voice (908) 968-2024, BBS (908) 968- 8148 at 2400/9600 Baud 24 hours a day. We can be reached on Compuserve at PPN 75300,1642 and on GEnie at address: Z-Net. FNET NODE 593 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Z*NET Atari Online Magazine Copyright (c)1991, Rovac Industries, Inc.. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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