ST Report: 19-Nov-93 #947From: Bruce D. Nelson (aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 11/20/93-09:59:41 PM Z
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From: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson) Subject: ST Report: 19-Nov-93 #947 Date: Sat Nov 20 21:59:41 1993 SILICON TIMES REPORT ==================== INTERNATIONAL ONLINE MAGAZINE ============================= from STR Electronic Publishing Inc. November 19, 1993 No. 9.47 ====================================================================== Silicon Times Report International Online Magazine Post Office Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32221-6155 R.F. Mariano Publisher-Editor ----------------------------------------- Voice: 904-783-3319 10 AM-4 PM EST STR Publishing Support BBS Network System * THE BOUNTY BBS * FIDO 1:112/35 ~ ITCNet 85:881/253 ~ FNET 350 ~ Nest 90:21/350 904-786-4176 USR/HST 24hrs-7 days 2400 -38.4 bps V.32-42 bis 16.8 Dual Standard FAX: 904-783-3319 12 AM-6 AM EST ----------------------------------------- Fido 1:112/35 The Bounty STR Support Central 1-904-786-4176 FNET. 620 : Leif's World ................1-904-573-0734 FNET. 690 : PASTE BBS....................1-206-284-8493 FNET. 489 : Steal Your Face BBS..........1-908-920-7981 MNET - Toad Hall BBS.....................1-617-567-8642 ______________________________________________________________________ > 11/19/93 STR 947 "The Original * Independent * Online Magazine!" """""""""""""""" - CPU INDUSTRY REPORT - TIME GOES ONLINE - PERSONAL DICTATION - PLATEMAKER DEBUT - DELL OFFERS PENTIUM - FIREFALL REVIEW - LOGITECH ERASERHEAD - MONITOR OVERVIEW - APPLE STARCORE - POWER PC BIG NEWS - TYPE DESIGNER 2.0 - PEOPLE ARE TALKING! -* COMDEX FALL'94, GREAT SHOW! *- -* QUADRA 6100 BIG NEWS! *- -* WINDOWS SHIPS 40 MILLION! *- ====================================================================== STReport International Online Magazine The Original * Independent * Online Magazine -* FEATURING WEEKLY *- "Accurate UP-TO-DATE News and Information" Current Events, Original Articles, Tips, Rumors, and Information Hardware - Software - Corporate - R & D - Imports ====================================================================== STReport's BBS - The Bounty BBS, invites all BBS systems, worldwide, to participate in the Fido/PROWL/ITC/USENET/NEST/F-Net Mail Networks. You may also call The Bounty BBS direct @ 904-786-4176. Enjoy the wonder and excitement of exchanging all types of useful information relative to computers, worldwide, through the use of excellent International Networking Systems. SysOps, worldwide, are welcome to join the STReport International Conferences. The Fido Node is 1:112/35, ITC Node is 85:881/253 Crossnet Code is #34813, and the "Lead Node" is #620. All computer platforms BBS systems are welcome and invited to participate. ====================================================================== CIS ~ AOL ~ DELPHI ~ BIX ~ FIDO ~ PROWL ~ ITC ~ NEST ~ EURONET USENET ~ CIX ~ CLEVELAND FREE-NET ~ INTERNET ~ FNET ~ GENIE ====================================================================== COMPUSERVE WILL PRESENT $15.00 WORTH OF COMPLIMENTARY ONLINE TIME to the Readers of; STREPORT INTERNATIONAL ONLINE MAGAZINE """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" "The Original 16/32bit Online Magazine" NEW USERS; SIGN UP TODAY! CALL: 1-800-848-8199 .. Ask for operator 198 You will receive your complimentary time and be online in no time at all! "Enjoy CompuServe's forums; where information is at its very best! """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" > From the Editor's Desk "Saying it like it is!" """""""""""""""""""""" Comdex, Comdex everywhere.... The entire Las Vegas showplace is dominated this year by the IBM and MAC platforms with a push toward total cross-platform compatibility with the Quadra 610 offering an MS DOS OS built in its covered later in this issue. As expected, the platform where our humble offering began, has no booth at all at Comdex FALL'94. Instead they've put all their eggs in the game machine basket. We shall see... Meanwhile back to where the action is. The myriad of new products announced at Comdex Fall'94 is virtually unbelievable! It'll take at least the next three to four weeks to cover each of the major categories and more to look at each in depth. We also begin the Monitor series this week. Look for reviews of Diamond Computer's product line in the next few weeks too. They are growing fast. Next week is Thanksgiving, on behalf of everyone at STReport, please have a wonderful holiday with all the warmth and safety possible. Ralph... """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" STReport's Staff DEDICATED TO SERVING YOU! """""""""""""""" Publisher -Editor """""""""""""""""" Ralph F. Mariano Lloyd E. Pulley, Editor, Current Affairs Section Editors """"""""""""""" PC SECTION AMIGA SECTION MAC SECTION ATARI SECTION ---------- ------------- ----------- ------------- R.D. Stevens R. Glover R. Noak D. P. Jacobson STReport Staff Editors: """"""""""""""""""""""" Dana P. Jacobson Michael Arthur John Deegan Lucien Oppler Brad Martin Judith Hamner John Szczepanik Dan Stidham Joseph Mirando Steve Spivey Doyle C. Helms Randy Noak Jeff Coe Contributing Correspondents: """""""""""""""""""""""""""" Tim Holt Norman Boucher Harry Steele Clemens Chin Neil Bradley Eric Jerue Ron Deal Robert Dean Ed Westhusing James Nolan Vernon W. Smith Bruno Puglia Frank Sereno IMPORTANT NOTICE """""""""""""""" Please, submit letters to the editor, articles, reviews, etc... via E-Mail to: Compuserve................... 70007,4454 America Online..................STReport Delphi......................... RMARIANO BIX............................ RMARIANO FIDONET........................ 1:112/35 FNET........................... NODE 350 ITC NET...................... 85:881/253 NEST........................ 90:21/350.0 GEnie......................... ST-REPORT """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" > CPU STATUS REPORT LATE BREAKING INDUSTRY-WIDE NEWS """"""""""""""""" IBM/POWER-PC/PC SECTION (I) =========================== IBM 51.875 - 0.875 at 4:24 on 2331700 shares > CPU STATUS REPORT LATE BREAKING INDUSTRY-WIDE NEWS """"""""""""""""" Computer Products Update - CPU Report ------------------------ ---------- Weekly Happenings in the Computer World Issue #47 By: Lloyd E. Pulley, Sr. ******* General Computer News ******* ** Time Warner Plans Online News ** An interactive news-on-demand service enabling users to choose and control the content, length and order of their news programming is in the works by Time Warner Inc. Time Warner said this week the service will be first offered late next year to customers at Time Warner's Orlando, Fla., interactive services experiment, the Full Service Network. Reports say the new service is to use the resources of the company's Time Inc. publishing unit and New York 1 News, its 24-hour New York City cable news service. It will be run by Walter Isaacson, currently Time Magazine's assistant managing editor, who will become editor of new media for Time Inc. and president of News-On-Demand; and Paul Sagan, who will become senior vice president of Time Warner Cable Programming Inc. The new service will include local, world and national news, business and finance, sports, reviews, health news and weather. ** Intel Hopes to Set Video Conferencing Standard ** An Intel Corp. executive said this week that the firm hopes its new Indeo technology will set the standard for PC-based video conferencing. Richard Pierce, marketing manager for Indeo, told attendees at the Piper Jaffray conference in New York that the purpose of Indeo is to develop an open systems architecture in the newly emerging PC-based video conferencing market. "We care about desktop video publishing because it is something that will truly drive growth in PCs," Pierce said. "Our strategy is to drive the standards," in what is a nascent industry of PC-based video conferencing. ** Matsushita Sends 30,000 Game Machines to U.S. Each Month ** Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. says it has been exporting its $700 Real Multimedia Game Machine, using 3DO Co.'s technology, at a monthly rate of some 30,000 units since its debut last month. Reports say the firm plans to put the machine on the Japanese and European markets next spring. The machine is equipped with a 32-bit RISC (reduced instruction command set) chip. Besides games, it also can run multimedia software such as educational software and photo compact discs on a television screen. ** Logitech to Market 'Eraser Head' Pointing Device ** Logitech Inc. says it has signed a letter of intent with Interlink Electronics of Camarillo, Calif., to distribute new pointing sticks based on Force Sensing Resistor (FSR) technology. The agreement will allow Logitech to exclusively market compact pointing devices with roughly the same diameter as a pencil eraser, residing on or near a computer keyboard. Similar to the device found on the IBM ThinkPad keyboard, Logitech notes that pointing sticks based on FSR provide an extremely convenient, highly accessible and cost effective means of pointing. Logitech says it intends to market FSR pointing sticks to keyboard manufacturers and notebook and desktop system manufacturers. ** IBM Being Sued by Woman Engineer ** IBM has been sued by one of its engineers who says her bosses forced her to have sex with a Pentagon official so IBM could get millions of dollars in government funding. Veronica Gunther, 35 years old, alleges superiors threatened to fire her in 1991 and 1992 unless she maintained a sexual relationship with Gary Denman, director of the Pentagon's ARPA (Advanced Research Projects Agency). Reports say the named defendants in the state court suit, which seeks unspecified damages, were IBM and two of Gunther's managers, Ray Blonn and Nancy Green. IBM spokesman Scott Brooks said the company doesn't comment on pending litigation and ARPA spokeswoman Jan Walker also declined to comment. ******* IBM Computer News ******* ** Windows Shipments Pass 40 Million Mark ** Microsoft Corp. reports that shipments of its Windows operating system has passed the 40 million unit mark. The Redmond, Wash.-based software publisher claims that Windows has been responsible for the founding of more than 500 new companies and for the direct creation of more than 17,300 jobs outside of Microsoft. It notes that Microsoft Windows has been responsible for the creation of at least $280 million in annual revenues for new small companies and for more than $1.3 billion in incremental revenue for existing small companies. Microsoft reports that more than 16,000 software companies throughout the U.S. now develop Windows-based software. These companies expect their revenues to increase by 35 percent next year, and they expect Windows based products to account for at least half of their total revenues, says Microsoft. ** Dell Offers Pentium PC ** Dell Computer Corp. says its new Pentium-based Dimension XPS P60 computer will start at $2,999, including a super VGA color monitor. The company said it will start shipping it later this month, with availability in Canada by Dec. 1. Dell also says it now offers factory installation of IBM's OS/2.1 operating system on its PCs. ******* MAC Computer News ******* ** Apple's IBM-Compatible Unit Unveiled at Comdex ** Apple Computer Inc. has used the world platform of the Comdex trade show in Las Vegas to unveil its new IBM- compatible Macintosh computer. Reports say the Macintosh Quadra 6100, DOS Compatible version, includes both a Motorola Corp. 68LC040 microprocessor to handle Mac programs and an Intel Corp. 486SX chip to run Microsoft Corp.'s IBM-compatible Windows and DOS software. Vice President Ian Diery of Apple's personal computer division said the system will be marketed to home office users and small businesses, adding, "We don't want compatibility to be an issue for our customers. By developing its most compatible personal computer, Apple intends to provide its users with all of the advantages of the Macintosh platform while protecting their investment in DOS and Windows-based software." Apple said it will charge less than $500 over the price of its low end Quadra 610 for the new machine, meaning it will probably retail for under $2,000. It also said it will sell a DOS Compatibility Card to upgrade the Quadra 610 and Centris 610 for less than $500. Officials with Apple did not say how soon it will begin selling the new machine. ** Megahertz Reaches Apple Deal ** Megahertz Corp. has reached a long-term agreement with Apple Computer Inc. to market a Megahertz-produced PCMCIA modem with XJACK for use with the Newton MessagePad. The credit-card size modem slides into the Newton's PCMCIA slot and consumes very little power. Megahertz says Apple will begin shipping the Newton Fax Modem Card with XJACK later this month through its authorized Newton distribution channels. ** Power PC Newsletter Debuts ** Macworld Communications Inc. has announced the launch of Power PC World, a newsletter dedicated to Power PC computing. The San Francisco-based company says the monthly standalone newsletter is dedicated to providing IS managers and volume buyers of Macintosh products detailed, up-to-date information, advice and guidance on Power PC technology and the transition to RISC-based computing. Power PC is a new computer platform based on the Power PC microprocessor jointly developed by Apple Computer, IBM and Motorola. "The Power PC microprocessor family offers the next big leap in performance and will provide the basis for the popularization of exciting new technologies and applications," said Adrian Mello, editor of Power PC World, and editor-in- chief of Macworld magazine. "The transition to Power PC is Apple's most important challenge since the introduction of the Macintosh, 10 years ago." The premiere issue's topics include: "Power PC -- The Future of the Macintosh," "Navigating the Power PC Upgrade Path" and "Power PC Development Tools." ** Apple Computers Will Never Again be Priced Above Market ** Apple Computer Inc. chief executive officer Michael Spindler said the firm will never again price its products above the market, although it will maintain its role as a technology innovator. Spindler said Apple will accelerate delivery of products across many computing platforms, including Microsoft Corp.'s Windows operating software. But he said the key to Apple's strategy was to "aggressively" price computers and software. "We will not as an industry leader price technology too high -- ever again," said Spindler. ___________________________________________________________ > PlateMaker STR InfoFile """"""""""""""""""""""" *** New Product Announcement *** IN Software Announces Platemaker ================================ IN SOFTWARE announced the release of PlateMaker. An Adobe Photoshop Plug-In module that exports DCS 2.0 files. The new specification for DCS from Quark, Inc. supports multiple plate color separations. With PlateMaker, it is now possible to export images of multiple plates utilizing the popular Postscript file format. The age old problem of duplicating documents to create custom backgrounds can now be accomplished in a single procedure out of Photoshop. Color separations can easily be created to include additional channels for spot colors, PANTONE backgrounds, varnishes, foil stamping, embossing, of any other special effect. In a CMYK Photoshop document, additional channels can be created and exported as 5th and 6th plates, never having to worry about registration problems. Supported modes include CMYK, Indexed, and Multichannel. "Prior to DCS 2.0, output of film needed for CMYK images with spot colors, varnishes, foil stamping, or any other special effect, re- quired either additional stripping time to manually strip in these pieces of film, or to duplicate the document and place each addi- tional special effect. With PlateMaker, additional channels created for these special effects can be carried right through to your final assembly, never having to worry about registration or stripping. In addition to CMYK, PlateMaker also gives you the ability to save spot color separations in Multichannel or Indexed color modes. PlateMaker can increase your productivity when images require more than just CMYK." says Gregory Hatem, Vice President of IN SOFTWARE. PLATEMAKER FEATURES * Full resolution composite for output to CMYK or RGB color printers. * Single or Multiple file DCS format separation. * 8 or 24-bit PICT preview for greater accuracy in placement into page layout packages. * Apply clipping paths to individual separation plates to create hard edged masks. * Create underprint masks for printing on colored papers or textiles. * Custom angles and frequencies for all plate separations exported. PlateMaker retails for $US 295.00 and is available from IN SOFTWARE and select resellers. IN SOFTWARE is a developer of Desktop publishing products for the Macintosh. Products include, PlateMaker, a Photoshop plug-in module to import and export DCS 2.0 format files; and GuideLines, an XTension for QuarkXPress that builds custom guides. For further information please contact: IN SOFTWARE 619-743-7502 619-743-7503 FAX CompuServe: 73260,1306 AppleLink: INSOFTWARE America On-Line: INSOFTWARE In Software, LineWorker, PlateMaker, and Guide Lines are trademarks of In Software. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Prices are subject to change without notice. ________________________________________________ > MONITORS STR Review Monitors - A Comprehensive overview """"""""""""""""""" WHICH MONITOR IS BEST? SHOULD ONE SHOP FOR PRICE, QUALITY or BOTH? by Ralph F. Mariano p-1 How many times have you been told or heard; "You get what you pay for!" Get ready, you are going to be hearing plenty of that is this series. STR will be presenting a series of articles about monitors, high priced, "big screen", packaged deals, and ... what the future may or should hold. As of right now, the series will consist of ten articles covering sixteen different monitors. Ranging from the "inexpensive high quality to the expensive high quality" monitors hyped in just about every hard copy publication in existence. This series is going to attempt to tell you exactly what we find, hear, see and experience. We'll pull no punches. In other words, we'll tell it like it is. While there are always the users who must impress everyone with the price he/she paid for a particular piece of hardware or software he is incessantly 'bragging' about, in many cases the user is trying to justify the long green he recently dropped on this product. Odds are he'll make a much stronger commotion if he finds that his "pride and joy", when stacked up against another at a meeting or show, offers little or no difference in all aspects of comparison. This is the sad part, the part that truly separates the real products from the heavily hyped mediocre performers that return a better profit because of better price breaks at the wholesale level due to cost cutting measures at the design and production level. This is a fact of life in the marketing world, get used to it no matter how much "brand loyalty" may be involved. The plethora of monitors available in the computing world is truly overwhelming and very confusing. The "El Cheapo" monitors distributors have this condition in their favor. The average user is faced with making a harried choice, taking what's offered in a bundle deal or, going for the most appealing ads. Nine out of every ten purchases become the first in a line of two or three before the user settles in on a preferred monitor. Most bundle deals offer a reasonably fair "plain vanilla" vga monitor. Often it is not indicated whether or not the monitor is non- interlaced or not. Of course, the non-interlaced is more desirable. The main focus of this series is to take away the "Dog and Pony" atmosphere that usually surrounds the user when buying a monitor by illustrating the benefits derived from purchasing the "better" monitors. While the expression; "You get what you pay for" is far from true, many users seem to rely upon the price as an indicator of real quality. One should always look to the benefits of a given product first.. then consider its price. The "higher priced" monitors usually offer far more in the way of benefits both obvious and hidden. Its the benefits we are concerned with. Benefits like low radiation, low eye strain and product lifetime. Beginning next week, we'll begin with the radiation factor. The monitors we shall be examining are a range of monitors from the " El Cheapo" to the "high dollar". This does not, by any stretch of the imagination, mean you can expect the lower priced monitors to take a beating. Stay tuned, this series will prove to be most interesting. And we are going to ask questions. __________________________________________________________ > Force of Habit STR InfoFile """"""""""""""""""""""""""" FORCE OF HABIT, A NEW SCIENCE FICTION NOVEL, PUBLISHED AS AN ELECTRONIC BOOK Marian Allen's second novel, FORCE OF HABIT, has been published by Serendipity Systems in an electronic, Books-On-Disks edition for users of IBM-PC compatible computers. Force of Habit is set in the year 2510 and chronicles the misadventures of Bel Schuster, a professor of Comparative Value Systems on the Galactic Union training ship affectionately called "Uncle Gus." "All I wanted," Bel said, "was a new outfit and a breath of fresh air. Was that so much to ask?" Yes, when the outfit belongs to an extortion victim who thinks that you're an undercover cop, and the air is that of an alien planet. Schuster, on shore leave, blunders into a tangled web of crime, political intrigue, and Galactic diplomacy. She responds with a perplexing legerdemain so baroque that, even after the villains are foiled, no one is quite sure what has happened, and to whom. This electronic edition features forward or backward scrolling of the text, pull-down menus, scroll bars, overlapping files, mouse support, hypertext, and other windows-like attributes. It runs on MS-DOS computers with as little as 256K of memory, however 640K is recommended. Force of Habit is available on two disks for computers with 360K disk drives, or a single disk in 720K or 1.2MB size. * * * Serendipity Systems has over one hundred electronic books and programs related to electronic publishing available. For a hypertext catalog with excerpts, send Serendipity Systems $1.00 and specify disk size wanted. (Overseas readers, send $3.00.) * * * Book reviewers can receive a copy by sending in this form. Send a reviewer's copy of Force of Habit to: Editor: Publication: Address: City, State, Zip MS-DOS disk size needed: ___360K, ___720K, ___1.2MB [This notice may be copied, freely distributed, or posted.] Force of Habit can be ordered from: Serendipity Systems P.O. Box 140 San Simeon, CA 93452 $10.00 per copy, shipped postpaid to North American Addresses. (Overseas readers should add $2.00 for shipping.) Disk size (360K, 720K, or 1.2MB) should be specified. ____________________________________________________ > Personal Dictation STR InfoFile """"""""""""""""""""""""""""""" ** New Product Announcement ** DESKTOP SPEECH RECOGNITION ========================== by IBM IBM announced that it will begin shipping the IBM Personal Dictation System, the most powerful desktop speech recognition technology available, beginning December 28 at a suggested retail price of under $1,000. The IBM Personal Dictation System is based on over 21 years of IBM research, originated in the Thomas J. Watson Research Center. The technology, which originally required mainframe processing power, was first offered in 1992 on a RISC System/6000 platform and is now available on personal computers with Intel 486 and Pentium chips, putting desktop dictation within the reach of millions of users. The IBM Personal Dictation System provides the most accurate large vocabulary speech recognition capabilities available today. The system features up to a 32,000 word vocabulary and takes dictation at up to 70 words per minute. Ideal for healthcare professionals, journalists, attorneys, scientists and business users, this technology changes the way users interact with and benefit from computers. The IBM Personal Dictation System, which retails for $499.00 ships with a U.S. English general business language model. The IBM Personal Dictation Adapter costs an additional $499.00. IBM has developed language models that tailor the system's vocabulary for the specific needs of journalists, emergency medical practitioners and radiologists. These language models are available for between $499.00 and $599.00 each. A legal language model and additional medical models are in development and will be available next year. How Speech Recognition Works ---------------------------- Computerized speech recognition systems convert the spoken word into text through a series of complex algorithmic equations that isolate, identify and interpret the individual phonemic components of human speech. The text is then displayed on a monitor and delivered to an application, such as a word-processor, and stored, as if it were keyed in. Text that is input by speech takes up no more disk space than keyed-in text. The IBM Personal Dictation System requires the use of "discrete" speech, which means the user must enunciate words clearly, avoid dropping the endings from words or slurring words together. Once the user is finished dictating a document, the text is completed within seconds and available for immediate editing. IBM is also exploring possible initiatives and development partners to port the technology for telephony applications, an emerging market with strong growth potential. IBM also announced a single 800 number for information, technical support and ordering for all IBM speech recognition products. That number is 1-800-TALK-2ME. _________________________________________________ > GRANDMA & ME STR Review """"""""""""""""""""""" JUST GRANDMA AND ME =================== from Broderbund Software by Frank Sereno Fully entitled Mercer Mayer's Just Grandma and Me, this title is the first in Broderbund's Living Books series of multimedia CD-rom edutainment programs. It is intended as a learning aid for teaching reading to children between 3 and 8 years of age. This program is available for IBM compatible MPC compliant computers and for color Macintosh computers. Requirements for clones are a 386SX or better cpu with Super VGA display of 640 by 480 with 256 colors, Windows 3.1, a sound card with a DAC (Sound Blaster or equivalent), 4 megs of ram and an MPC compliant CD-rom. On the Macintosh, requirements are an LC/II series/Performa series machine in 256 color mode running System 6.0.7 or higher, 4 megs of ram and a CD-rom drive. A large paperback version of Mercer Mayer's book is included with the program. Installing JG&M (Just Grandme and Me) is fairly simple in Windows but there is no automatic installation program. In Program Manager, you must open the program group where you would like JG&M installed, then click on File, then select New. Next type in your description and then select the program file for JG&M. It will be on the root directory of your CD-rom drive as GRANDMA.EXE. Once that is done, simply choose Done and an icon of Little Critter will be placed in the program group. JG&M is an interactive book, the tale of Little Critter, his grandmother and the fun they have at the beach. Little Critter is some sort of rodent but I never figured out which species. His behavior is typical of a 5 year-old boy in that he loves his grandmother, enjoys playing and that mischief always seems to find him. Little Critter's exploits will even amuse adults and will certainly keep the attention of young children. Each page is displayed as a full-screen fully-colored animated illustration. The text for each page is displayed and read to the child by the clear voice of Little Critter. A short animation will follow and then the interactive play really begins. The child can use the mouse to click on any object or character in the illustration, thus triggering a short, amusing animation. Clicking on a flower might cause a bee to come forth and land on Little Critter's hat or by clicking on a tree a bird may fly across the screen. The child can also click on the ball at the start of the text and have the narration read again in its entirety, or he can click on words to have them pronounced individually. The child can go to the next page by clicking on the right arrow or to the preceding page by clicking on the left arrow. To return to the start of the program, simply click on the page number. Experts tend to agree that parents should read with their young children. This program will not replace parents, but it can be a wholesome and entertaining substitute when parents have too little time. A child can play with this program for hours as he searches for animations on each page. He should assimilate words from hearing the narration and viewing the text on the monitor. This program comes with little directions for its use because it is mouse-controlled and easily operated. Just click on everything in sight and watch and listen to what happens! I give JG&M my personal recommendation. Broderbund's suggested retail price is $50, but it is being discounted by most merchants to as low as $30 for the complete package. If you have the necessary hardware and young children, this is a great program to spark your child's interest in books. The program includes English, Spanish and Japanese versions on the disc, so perhaps you and your children can learn another language as well! _________________________________________________________________ > Type Designer 2.0 STR InfoFile """""""""""""""""""""""""""""" *** New Product Announcement *** ** True Conversion and Design of Fonts ** ========================================= Type Designer 2.0, the only low-cost program available on the PC that correctly converts Type 1 fonts into TrueType format and features powerful design capabilities is now available from DS Design. Type Designer's specialized technology preserves the existing hints during TrueType conversion to achieve the highest quality. Unlike other similar PC products, there is no distortion of the original letter form and no loss of the original hints. Even at small sizes and low resolutions, TrueType fonts generated by Type Designer are virtually indistinguish-able from the original Type 1 designs. You can design your own high-quality fonts in Type 1 and TrueType format. Special symbols can be created such as mathematical and chemical symbols, special language characters, and you can even create a font with your company logo. EPS files that were designed in a draw program can be imported into your font. The outlines from TrueType fonts can be retrieved for editing, altering and adjusting. Plus, you can assign and rearrange any character to any key on the keyboard. Type Designer also has functions for mirroring, italicizing, rotating and stretching individual character parts. Single characters can be modified or a complete font can also be modified by using the global command. There are ten levels of undo to make it simple to move back and forth through the design process and experiment with your design. Type Designer's powerful features include a test option which allows you to view the behavior and design of font characters at any point size on the screen. You have the ability to edit individual existing kerning pairs and add your own. The editing options make revising fonts easy by allowing you to automatically insert reference points at the outer most positions on the character. If you have two many curves, or reference points, you can automatically remove unneces-sary points and join the curves to clean up and improve the quality of your outlines. Type Designer operates under Windows 3.1 and contains clear dialogues and extensive contact sensitive help to give you ease of use and control over the font creation and conversion process. Drawing lines and curves can be accomplished through a mouse or by entering screen coordinates. Type Designer 2.0 retails for $119. For more information contact; DS Design 2440 SW Cary Parkway, Suite 210, Cary NC 27513 (800) 745-4037 (919) 319-1770 Fax (919) 460-5983. _______________________________________________ > Kinesoft News! STR InfoFile """"""""""""""""""""""""""" ** New Product Announcement ** ** It's a Wonderful Life on CD-ROM ** ===================================== Kinesoft Development, a developer and publisher of innovative software announces the release of a two-CD compilation of the classic Frank Capra film "It's a Wonderful Life", starring James Stewart, for Multimedia PCs running Microsoft Windows. This exciting new release is distributed exclusively through MicroProse Software, Inc., a Maryland-based leading publisher and distributor of software for personal computers. The "It's a Wonderful Life", Multimedia Edition contains not only the complete, feature-length cinematic classic in digital format, but also an extensive array of supplementary material, providing an interactive resource to the American film classic. The two CD-ROM set includes over two hours of video and more than a gigabyte of information, including the original "Coming Attractions" feature for the 1946 release. In addition, this set provides: * The Original Release Version of "It's a Wonderful Life", Digitally Transferred, Complete and Un-Cut using the latest in PC-based digital video technology * The Complete Final Script * Audio Commentaries by noted film and media historian Walter Podrazik * An Extensive Film History also by noted film and media historian Walter Podrazik * Film Reviews both past and present * Extensive Scrapbook of Film Clips and "Behind the Scenes" Photos * A Brain-Twisting Trivia Quiz * Biographies of all the Major Actors as well as performers considered, but not cast, by director Frank Capra * and much more... The depth, quality and flexibility of the "It's a Wonderful Life", Multimedia Edition marks a milestone in digital entertainment that is nearly equivalent to the enormous impact the film has had on movie audiences over the years. The "It's a Wonderful Life", Multimedia Edition was designed to be engaging: to provide viewers with an ability to learn more about this well-loved film, interact with the program and choose how they view the wealth of information provided in this CD set. Product features were developed to cater to individual users preferences. These include: * Users can view the movie in the size and resolution that works best, customizing the product for their multimedia system. * Interactivity allows users to switch from the video to the script, keeping both synchronized. * A unique "visual index" allows the user to instantly access any scene or section of the movie quickly and easily. * A bookmark feature which allows users to mark favorite sections or to "save" their place, enabling them to return to the movie or script at any point and pick up exactly where they left off. * All of this is presented in a smooth, intuitive user interface which allows quick and easy access to the wealth of information provided. The complete CD set, carrying a suggested retail price of $79.95, is scheduled for release November 1, 1993. Distributed internationally by MicroProse Software, Inc., it will be available through major distributors, retailers and mass merchants. A Multimedia PC (486 or higher processor equipped with CD-ROM drive and sound card), SVGA card capable of 256 colors at 640 x 480 resolution, 4MB RAM, a hard drive, MS-DOS 3.1 or later and Windows 3.1 or later are required to run "It's a Wonderful Life", Multimedia Edition. """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" :HOW TO GET YOUR OWN GENIE ACCOUNT: _________________________________ Set your communications software to Half Duplex (or Local Echo) Call: (with modem) 800-638-8369. Upon connection type HHH (RETURN after that). Wait for the U#= prompt. Type: XTX99587,CPUREPT then, hit RETURN. GEnie Information copyright (C) 1991 by General Electric Information Services/GEnie, reprinted by permission """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" ___ ___ _____ _______ /___| /___| /_____| /_______/ The Macintosh RoundTable /____|/____| /__/|__| /__/ ________________________ /_____|_____|/__/_|__|/__/ /__/|____/|__|________|__/ /__/ |___/ |__|_/ |__|_/____ Managed by SyndiComm /__/ |__/ |__|/ |__|______/ An Official Forum of the International Computer Users Group *** STReport available in MAC RT *** ASCII TEXT for ALL GEnie users! .____________________________________________________________________. | Help Desk - Having a problem with your Mac? Stop by the HD for the | | answers! In the RTC from 9pm to 12pm EDT in ROOM 1........ (605;2) | !____________________________________________________________________! .____________________________________________________________________. | A SyndiComm Round Table | | (Tom Weishaar & Kent Filmore) | |____________________________________________________________________| | | | Hosted by: | | Chief SysOp: (Unk) DAVE.REID | | | | -- SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS -- | -- SOFTWARE LIBRARY -- | | Education ....... (Rob) R.WHITELOCK | Chief Librarian: RANDY.SIMON | | Mac Hardware ..... (Nick) N.PASSINO | Asst Librarians: | | (J) W.GLENN1 | (Steve) S.MACK | | Games ............ (Bart) MAC.GAMES | (Anne) ANNE-INDA | | Telecommunity ........ (Kent) DRACO | (Phil) P.VALIQUETTE | | PowerBooks...... (Doc) D.E.JOHNSTON | | |_____________________________________!______________________________| | --- Weekly RTC Schedule --- | -- Help Desk Schedule -- | | (All Times Eastern) | | Educational Mac Mon 9:45pm Rm 3 | Mon-Fri 9:00pm-12:00am Rm 1 | | About PowerBooks Tue 9:45pm Rm 2 | Sunday 10:30pm-12:00am Rm 1 | | Telecommunity Wed 9:45pm Rm 2 | ___________________________ | | Macintosh Games Wed10:30pm Rm 3 | To enter GE-MUG RTC, type.. | | Macintosh Hardware Thr 9:45pm Rm 2 | MOVE 605;2 and choose room # | | Sunday Night Fight Sun 9:00pm Rm 3 |______________________________| |_____________________________________!______________________________| | **** IMPORTANT INFORMATION **** | | For COMPLETE information and TIPS on downloading, be sure | | to read item # 4 on page 605 -"About The RoundTable" | !____________________________________________________________________! MAC/APPLE SECTION (II) ====================== AAPL 33.000 - 0.375 at 4:01 on 1097900 shares Randy Noak, Editor /--------------------------------------------------------------------\ | * GEnie-MUG NEWS * for the week of 11/15/93 - issue 36 | |--------------------------------------------------------------------| | What's Hot and Happening This Week In GEnie's Macintosh User Group | \--------------------------------------------------------------------/ GEnie-MUG News Editor: Eric Mueller (DLAND.ERIC) entire contents copyright 1993 by Eric C. Mueller WELCOME to the GEnie-MUG RoundTable newsletter! This quick bulletin gives you an idea of what's cooking in the GEnie Macintosh User Group (GEnie- MUG). I'm Eric Mueller, and I write this file every week so that you can find the action in GEnie-MUG: the latest controversy in the bulletin board, the hottest files in the library, and the hippest chats in the RTC rooms. I'm always interested in your comments on this file, and would love to hear them. If you're new to GEnie or GEnie-MUG, you can read about GEnie-MUG (including information on what GEnie-MUG has to offer and the layout of the system) by typing "M 605;4". Additionally, the GEnie-MUG help desk (a live hotline) is available in the GEnie-MUG RTC (type "M 605;2" then choose room 1). For more information and a schedule of times, type "M 605;4". THE BIG NEWS THIS WEEK ON GENIE is that the two sister roundtables to GEnie-MUG, MacPro and Mac-PS, have received overhauls! MacPro, the Macintosh Programmer and Developer RoundTable on page 480, is now under the caring hand of Matt Deatherage (M.DEATHERAGE), who has completely reorganized the bulletin board and library areas of the roundtable. About 30 megabytes of new files are in the library, and there's a new staff, too. Check in and check out what Matt has done with the area---I was thrilled and I think you will be too. Mac-PS, the Macintosh Product Support RoundTable on page 606, now has all of the online Macintosh support in one place, including all beta testing and other support- company related happenings. It also has a new library area for software updates! Both new RoundTables are in place and ready for you to enjoy, so look 'em over today. EVERYONE NEEDS A GOOD ASSISTANT, and if you're an illustrator who uses Adobe Illustrator, you'll be interested in ILLUSTRATOR ASSISTANT. This utility prints an Illustrator (or other EPS) file to a PostScript printer in a format idea for creating a reference book of an art library. The utility prints the file name, path, icon, preview type, date, fonts used, and more at the top of the page. I'm going to be using this utility to get a handle on all this clip- art building on my hard drive. If you think that Illustrator's Assistant is what you need, check out GEnie-MUG library file #31012, ILL. ASSISTANT 1.2.4, right away! (To download a file from the GEnie-MUG libraries, type "m605;3" and then "6".) WANT TO GET INTO THE DESKTOP PUBLISHING game but don't know where to start? Don't fret; it's a common problem around these parts---it's hard to tell where to begin. How can you tell what software is best for you? Is it appropriate to plunk down roughly $600 for PageMaker, when Microsoft Word might do everything you need? GEnie-MUGgers aren't immune from this sort of soul-searching; this very topic has been hot in the bulletin board for the past week and it's ready for you to join in. See category 2 ("SOFTWARE: Daily Business"), topic 3 ("MS Word 5.1"), messages 58 through the end of the topic, and good luck. DISK DRIVE PROBLEMS may be plaguing the new Macintosh AV machines; GEnie- MUGger Jack Mello has reported a snag with his company's brand-spanking- new AV machines being unable to read 800k floppy disks! Luckily, others in the GE-MUG bulletin board have answers to the cause of the problem (including a theory about why it's happening), and best of all, a solution to the snafu. Sound like something you're interested in? See all the details in category 23 ("MACINTOSH: Quadras & Centris"), topic 7 ("Quadra 840AV and Centris 660AV"), messages 145 through the end of the topic. WANT THAT POWERBOOK TO STAY AWAKE nights, diligently (or is that digitally?) crunching numbers, sending email, faxing the folks, and just generally keeping busy? You can, with INSOMNIAC, a new utility for the PowerBook that causes it to wake up at a time (or times) you specify. Want it to pop up at 2 a.m., to download software from a long distance BBS? No problem. You can use Insomniac to have your PowerBook wake several times during the night, or even to have it wake at the same time every night or every week. If you have a PowerBook that can be set to wake itself up (as the PowerBook 100 and Duos can), check out Insomniac v1.0.2, file #31013, in the GEnie-MUG library today! (For more information on Insomniac, download file #31015.) HARD DRIVE HALLUCINATIONS are the subject of messages in GEnie-MUG this week, as GEnie-MUGger David Inman wonders aloud if there are gnomes in his hard drive. (He adds, "I believe that there are gnomes in many of my appliances as evidenced by constant breakdowns and generally cantankerous behavior. They probably arrived years ago in the VCR and spread out from there.") The problem seems to be that his hard drive turns on occasionally, for just a moment, makes a few noises, and then clicks off. Weird, huh? Luckily, it turns out that the gnomes are helpful, or at least that's the general consensus. Find out all the news on the hard drive hallucinations in category 23 ("MACINTOSH: Quadras & Centris"), topic 9 ("Noises in the Centris?")! HERE'S AN OFFER THAT CAN'T BE BEAT: with the latest version of GIFConverter, now available in the GEnie-MUG libraries, you can display any GIF, JPEG, TIFF, RIFF, MacPaint, Thunderscan, Startupscreen, RLE, or PICT (even compressed!) file on any Macintosh! GIFConverter is a great picture-handling utility that's been around darn near forever; the author, Kevin Mitchell, has always been adding features and providing slick upgrades to the software. If you don't have any software to view GIF or JPEG images, those two features alone make this software alone well worth the $40 shareware fee. Check out the fully-functional version of GIFConverter v2.3.4, now available in the GEnie-MUG libraries as file #31008. (For more detailed information on GIFConverter, check out GEnie- MUG library file #31014.) JUST IN TIME FOR THE HOLIDAY SEASON comes the new "Christmas" font, a beautiful calligraphic font perfect for Christmas party invitations or other handiwork where you want a flowing, sharp script-type font. This font is close descendant of the "MacHumaine" font and a distant relative of "BlackChancery," a popular Adobe font. Check out the freeware Christmas font in TrueType form as GEnie-MUG file #31005 or as a PostScript Type 1 font as GEnie-MUG file #31004, and... Merry Christmas! THAT'S ALL for this week. Until next week, continue to stand for possibility with Macintosh! ____________________________________________ > From the Editor's Desk "Once again, things are hoppin'" """""""""""""""""""""" by Randy Noak Mac Report Editor Once again things are hoppin' here at Mac Report HQ. I finally got my new modem up and running, got a new Syquest cartridge, and caught up on some of my DTP work. All in all a good week. In this week's Mac Report be sure and look for Jeff Coe's review of Firefall Arcade. It's a good one! Also, check out the special offer on SITcomm from Aladdin Systems. As always, be on the lookout for any FREEBIES that might buried somewhere in the column. It's COMDEX time again and many, many trees are giving their lives to enable you and I, dear reader, to have the good fortune to read reams of press releases. It's all for a good cause I suppose. I've gathered a passel of press pulp this past week, and have attempted to separate the wheat from the chaff (so to speak). Read about it all elsewhere in the column. I received my FREE issue of Nautilus CD, and, all-in-all, I'm impressed. Lotsa games, game demos, clip art, fonts, QuickTime movies, and more, done up in an appealing interface. It truly is an interactive magazine. I hope all of you that own CD-ROM players have called to request your FREE issue. In case you missed it, the number is: 1-800-448- 2323. This is one that is absolutely FREE. No shipping, handling, nothin'. FREE! Now, on to the rest of the column. Reviews, news, advice, and commentary. Enjoy. ______________________________________________ > FIREFALL ARCADE STR Review """""""""""""""""""""""""" FIREFALL ARCADE =============== By Jeff Coe "Deep within the nuclear ground Fireworms breed. They soak up minerals that are necessary for the survival of the human race. Your job is to rid the tunnels of these ferocious Fireworms. The Fireworms creep and crawl through the mineral fields searching for humans to feed on. But they are blind, and, while they cannot see you, they will eat you if they run into you! As you blast your way through each tunnel you'll clear out mineral barriers. Occasionally, a mineral barrier will yield a vital ore that will activate special guns on your ship. The Fireworms have friends, so watch out for their allies!" That's the setup. You can forget that! What you have here is a pretty decent version of the old arcade classic 'Centipede', with a little dash of 'Galaxian' thrown in for good measure. While I can't give it very high marks for originality, 'FIREFALL ARCADE' is a well done piece of programming. Just like in the arcade original, you control a shooter at the bottom of the screen. You have full movement left and right, but can only go up the screen about one fourth of the way. Littering the screen are various geometrically shaped objects that you may have to blast through to get a clear shot at the advancing "Fireworm", or just to clear out some elbow room for yourself. The "worm" starts at the top, and marches back and forth across the screen, dropping down one row whenever it runs into something. A worm is made up of a continuous row of identically shaped objects. It will stay together until you blast one of those body parts, and then it will separate at the point of the hit. It's quite common to end up with a half dozen or so segments coming at you independently, all originally part of one worm. After you wipe out all the segments of one worm, another starts from the top. All the other elements of Centipede are here too, but with different names. I won't go into any more detail about them here. If you've played Centipede, you'll recognize all the old regulars. FIREFALL ARCADE consists of 9 levels of play, each level containing 6 Fireworms for you to defeat. After you complete a level, you are taken to a bonus area. This is where Galaxian comes in. The bonus areas are blank screens, with you in your usual place at the bottom. A number of larger shapes will come swooping out in single file and spiral their way around the screen for a bit. You need to blast as many of them as you can to rack up bonus points. The shapes do not shoot back at you, so there is no danger of loosing a life. You start the game with 3 lives, and can earn an additional life for every 200,000 points you score. There are also a variety of power-ups you can collect to give you better weapons, shields, free lives and invincibility. (Special Note to Centris owners - There is a special version of the game, selectable from the main menu, designed just for high performance Macintoshes. This version actually plays a little slower than the normal mode, which makes it more playable on a fast machine, but gives longer worms, and more sound and animation.) The Plus Side - The graphics, while small on the screen, are very well done. Some of the shapes are 3D, with very realistic shadow effects. The background of the main playing area is just black, but the border areas where your score, number of lives remaining, and the level indicators are located is done in a realistic gray brick pattern with what looks like neon lights encircling it. Very well done! The sound is outstanding. Each level has its own tune, and the rest of the sound effects sound like high quality samples. By the way, the music and sound effects can be toggled on or off independently of each other, and the volume can be turned up or down from within the program, so there's no need to adjust the sound with your Sound Desk Accessary, which is a good thing since you don't have access to your menus while the game is loaded. Also under the category of sound is the fact that FIREFALL ARCADE comes with an improved Sound Manager from Apple that adds a few new features to the standard extension that came with my LC II. The new one is version 3, and no I don't know what the old one was. I never looked, but I know this one's better. According to the documentation that came with the game, this new Sound Manager actually makes FIREFALL ARCADE play faster. When installing the game on your hard drive, you have the option of also installing the new Sound Manager. Which brings me to ... The Minus Side - The game takes up just a bit over 3 megabytes of space. That's not a lot, but if all the new games require Hard Drive space, I can see where I'll need a bigger drive soon! The only other thing I should mention is that your shooter kind of floats around at the bottom. You don't have much exacting control over it, which can take a bit of getting used to in order to get it to react the way you want it to. After a few games, it's not a problem, but can be a little aggravating at first. System Requirements: A Mac LC or higher; Hard Drive; 256 colors and 3-MB of free RAM. The game can be played with the mouse, the keyboard, or a Gravis GamePad. FIREFALL ARCADE is published by : Inline Software 308 Main Street Lakeville, CT 06039-1204 (203) 435-4995 _____________________________________________ > MAC Games STR FOCUS! """""""""""""""""""" Have you seen Inside Mac Games Magazine yet? It's an electronic format magazine complete with illustrations and screen shots of the games reviewed. Look for a review of IMG in a future issue of Mac Report. INSIDE MAC GAMES MAGAZINE ========================= Inside Mac Games (IMG) is a full-color electronic monthly magazine covering the latest news and information on Macintosh entertainment software and hardware, as well as reviews, sneak previews, and feature columns written by industry experts. IMG marks a new era in electronic publishing as it combines in-depth reviews and insider perspectives from the Mac entertainment market within a stunning on-screen design, screen shots, QuickTime movies and graphics format. The magazine is aimed at all levels of Macintosh gaming enthusiasts, from the casual buyers who want the most from their gaming entertainment dollar to the consummate hacker who wants the inside track on what's hot and why. Since its release in February, IMG has already raised a cache of praise from readers all over the country, as evidenced by the flurry of messages in various online forums. "To say I am impressed would be an understatement!" says Neil Shapiro, Chief Sysop for CompuServe's Mac Entertainment Forum and noted industry writer. Thanks to modern technology, that magazine has spread to over 40 countries with an estimated readership of 30,000 Macintosh gaming enthusiasts, making IMG a smash hit. Inside Mac Games is available in both Paid Subscription and Free Preview editions. Paid advertisements will appear in both editions. A monthly promotional version is available on services like America Online, CompuServe, GEnie, the Internet, Nautilus CD-ROM, and bulletin boards around the country. Subscriptions to Inside Mac Games are available in two formats: an e-mail version that is uploaded directly to your mailbox on the Internet for $18/year, or a floppy-disk version that is mailed to a street address for $28/year ($38 International). The disk version has additional reviews, screen shots, QuickTime movies, and a Shareware Game of the Month. Inside Mac Games accepts VISA and MASTERCARD For more information, contact: Tuncer Deniz, 708/486-0636 3862 Grace Lane Glenview, IL 60025 _______________________________________ > SITcomm Offer STR InfoFile """""""""""""""""""""""""" Here's that special deal on SITcomm that I mentioned up-column. Pretty liberal terms. I'll try and get a copy and let you know how it stacks up against the competition. Special SITcomm Pricing Announced ================================= Watsonville, CA (November 3, 1993) -- Aladdin Systems today announced special pricing to Aladdin customers and users of competing telecommunications products for their newly released product, SITcomm(tm). For 65% off of the list price, registered users of any Aladdin commercial or shareware product (StuffIt Deluxe, StuffIt SpaceSaver or StuffIt Lite) can purchase SITcomm for $39.00. Registered users of competing telecommunications programs (such as White Knight, Smartcom, MicroPhone II, or ZTerm) can purchase SITcomm for a low price of $49.00. The suggested retail price of SITcomm is $120.00. Qualifying users can order SITcomm from the company by phone: 408-761- 6200, fax: 408-761-6206,or online via AppleLink/America Online: ALADDIN, CompuServe:75300,1666, GEnie: ALADDINSYS, or Internet: firstname.lastname@example.org . There is a tax for California residents and a fee for shipping and handling. (Registered users of Aladdin products will need to provide Aladdin with the serial number of the product used. Users of competing telecommunications products need to provide Aladdin with the name of the competitive product used.) SITcomm is a communications program which allows Macintosh users to easily connect to commercial online services, bulletin board services (BBS) and the Internet. SITcomm is an easy-to-use solution which offers unique features such as automated logons, auto-expansion of compressed files, built-in compression, translation of non-Macintosh files, and scripting with AppleScript or UserLand Frontier. SITcomm and other Aladdin Systems' products are distributed in the U.S. and Canada by Ingram-Micro and Merisel. SITcomm is available from dealers worldwide and by mail order companies including MacConnection, Mac'sPlace, MacWarehouse, and MacZone. European distribution is handled by Iona Software (phone 353-1-366328). Founded in 1988, Aladdin Systems, Inc., is credited with creating the compression standard for applications and communications for the Macintosh platform. The company s product line includes StuffIt Deluxe and StuffIt SpaceSaver, award-winning products which offer comprehensive solutions for compression, translation, and archiving. Aladdin is one of the few remaining pioneers committed to the shareware and freeware philosophy of software distribution and marketing. For more information about Aladdin Systems or its products contact the company at 165 Westridge Drive, Watsonville, CA 95076; (408) 761-6200. ____________________________________________ > QUADRA STR InfoFile A true, cross-platform solution. """"""""""""""""""" Macintosh Quadra 610 Computer ============================= MOVED OVER PR NEWSWIRE AFTER 8:15 AM, EDT, MONDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 1993. Apple Unveils Plans for Macintosh Quadra Computer with MS-DOS- and Windows-Compatibility LAS VEGAS, Nevada--November 15, 1993--As part of its commitment to provide cross-platform computing solutions, Apple Computer, Inc. today announced it is developing a Macintosh Quadra computer with MS- DOS- and Windows-compatibility. Packed with the powerful Motorola 68LC040 and an Intel486 SX microprocessors, the Macintosh Quadra 610, DOS Compatible version computer is being designed to enable users to run Macintosh, DOS and Windows applications. The company will unveil its plans for the product today at Comdex, the largest personal computer tradeshow in the U.S. The Macintosh Quadra 610, DOS Compatible version, which is planned to be preinstalled with MS-DOS 6.2, is being designed to provide users with multiple-platform options and protect their current investment in software. Apple's goal is to deliver a product that is ideally suited for home office users and small businesses with cross-platform computing needs. At the touch of two keys, users will be able to switch from the Macintosh computer environment to DOS and back again. Users to Work in Two Environments at the Same Time --------------------------------------------------- The Macintosh Quadra 610, DOS Compatible version is planned to feature dual processors, enabling users to work in both environments simultaneously. The Macintosh Quadra 610, DOS Compatible version is being designed to feature a 25 MHz 68LC040, powering the Macintosh computer environment, and a 25 MHZ Intel486 SX, which runs DOS or Windows-based software. Because the Nobody home...dual processors will work independently, users will be able to run Macintosh and DOS or Windows' applications in tandem and even cut and paste data between the two environments. Dual monitor support is designed to provide customers with the option of viewing the Macintosh and DOS environments at the same time, allowing the user to add the second display monitor without purchasing an additional video card. The Macintosh Quadra 610, DOS Compatible version is expected to support most VGA, SVGA and multisync monitors as well as the Apple 14" or 16" Macintosh Color Displays. Apple expects the same hard drive to run Macintosh, MS-DOS or Windows applications and plans to offer an optional internal CD-ROM drive designed to run Macintosh, DOS and Windows CD-ROM discs, providing users with access to the hundreds of exciting CD-ROM titles currently available. In addition, Apple expects DOS and Windows applications to print to any Apple- or Macintosh-compatible printer through a built-in serial port or optional Ethernet port. Comparable in cost to most Macintosh- or DOS-only systems today, the Macintosh Quadra 610, DOS Compatible version is expected to be priced at a U.S. ApplePrice of less than $500 over the Quadra 610 model. Upgrade Information ------------------- A DOS Compatibility Card for Macintosh is being planned for Quadra 610 and Centris 610 owners to upgrade for less than $500 in the U.S. Apple will provide pricing and availability information when the product is completed and ready for release. Editor Note; At least one STReport Editor is considering purchasing a Quadra DOS compatible. For Me though, I'll wait for PowerPC. Apple is moving full-tilt into the software publishing biz. Here's the info. __________________________________________ > APPLE COMDEX NEWS! STR FOCUS! """"""""""""""""""""""""""""" DISTRIBUTED AT COMDEX. Apple's StarCore Group ====================== Background Information StarCore is a newly founded international software publishing and distribution group within the Personal Interactive Electronics (PIE) division of Apple Computer, Inc. StarCore s mission to help Apple become the premiere worldwide publisher and distributor of mobile computing and multimedia software for Newton technologies and multiple CD-ROM platforms. StarCore is strategically positioned to bring to market both software products under is own name as well as affiliate labels, for which it serves as a powerful distributor and marketing partner with access to thousands of outlets worldwide. StarCore s affiliation with multiple software companies will enable Apple to have a strong software selection to support upcoming Newton technology and CD-ROM platforms. Headquartered at the Apple campus in Cupertino, California, the StarCore group has brought together an impressive management team, the members of which have, in the past, made significant contributions to a number of international computer and consumer electronics milestones, including bringing to market the first pentop computer and the introduction of the first CD-ROM drive for a video game system. The team members have equally impressive backgrounds in strategic development, sales, product marketing and financial consulting for computer, multimedia and video game software companies worldwide, including Accolade, Electronic Arts, NEC, Lucasfilm Ltd., Atari and Apple. StarCore Publishing ------------------- The StarCore team is actively involved with the companies for which they publish software, handling all of the packaging, production, manufacturing, sales and marketing for these titles. Apple s long- standing relationship with manufacturing companies, such as Sony and Epson, allows StarCore to receive very reasonable component pricing, which independent software publishers could not obtain independently. StarCore published titles receive broad-based marketing support in the areas of national advertising, public relations, point-of- purchase merchandising, event marketing, packaging and software clubs. In addition, StarCore published titles will be tailored for distribution to audiences in the United States, Europe and the Pacific regions. Affiliate Label Program ----------------------- Software companies working under the StarCore affiliate label program greatly benefit by gaining access to Apple s large distribution network. In addition, StarCore assists affiliate labels in marketing their products through in-store promotions, catalogs, brochures and public relations. Distribution ------------ Apple will distribute StarCore software through approximately 4,000 outlets nationwide, plus an additional 2,000 outlets in Europe and the Pacific. StarCore published titles and affiliate label titles receive access to the same number of retail outlets. Distribution is handled both directly and through leading software distributors worldwide. Apple maintains warehouses in the United States and multiple locations throughout Europe and the Pacific. MOVED OVER PR NEWSWIRE AFTER 8:15 AM, EDT, MONDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 1993. Apple's StarCore Group Announces: Six New Multimedia Titles For The Macintosh CUPERTINO, California--November 10, 1993--Apple Computer's StarCore, a newly founded software publishing and distributing group within its Personal Interactive Electronics division, has announced six new CD- ROM titles for the Macintosh that promise to open up a whole new world of interactive "edutainment" for children and adults, alike. Apple's multimedia software development group, Discovery Studio, based in San Francisco, has created two new CD-ROM titles uniquely designed to promote interaction between family members by allowing players to choose individual difficulty levels that put them on equal footing. The two titles, Travelrama USA, a cross country postcard game and Wacky Jacks, a CD game show, also look and "feel" like three-dimensional board games rather than flat, one-dimensional computer titles. Travelrama USA takes players, ages seven to adult, on a coast-to- coast scavenger hunt in which they travel from city to city collecting postcards--and actually learn U.S. geography along the way. Each player is given a list of five postcards to collect--three featuring specific places and two general topic cards, such as monuments or lakes--which they obtain by making their way to individual cities or by trading cards with their opponents. Travelrama USA features a richly detailed, realistic map of the U.S, illustrating routes and mileage to destination cities and more than 600 postcards featuring full color, digitized photographs of actual U.S. cities and attractions. Another title from Apple's Discovery Studio that promotes family fun is Wacky Jacks, a CD game show featuring the voiceover of veteran TV host, Don Pardo. The fun begins in a cartoon TV game show studio, where "Wacky," a helpful, but slightly loony character announces the contestants, which players select from the studio audience. Wacky Jacks features four action-packed, colorful games that test players' knowledge and skill: a fast-paced game in which players must match pairs of pictures from a game board that is constantly changing; a tic-tac-toe type game in which you capture squares by correctly answering trivia questions; a hangman game where picture titles help you fill in the blanks of the mystery phrase; and a picture puzzle game in which you have to unscramble the pieces of a large-screen image. As in Travelrama USA, players can choose their own level of difficulty, which affects the level of trivia questions, speed of action and complexity of puzzles. Players can also access the album, a colorful set of 500 picture cards used in all the Wacky Jacks games, with fun facts on a variety of themes, including people, animals, places and everyday objects. Travelrama USA and Wack Jacks currently run on Macintosh computers with color screens (LCIII & up) and will be available under Apple's StarCore label nationwide for a suggested retail price of $39.95. For younger children, Apple's StarCore group is introducing the Peter's Adventure series, four multi-lingual education and discovery titles for the Macintosh. These new CD-ROM titles, developed by Arborescence in Paris, feature beautiful colors, lively music and highly detailed animated images that combine to create a fascinating educational experience for the child. Peter's Number Adventure; Peter's Magic Adventure; and Peter & Santa Claus all feature voiceover options, including English, German, Spanish and French, which can be accessed with a simple click of the mouse. Peter's Alphabet Adventure features both French and English voiceovers. Peter's Number Adventure, an "explore and discover" number activity for children, features 10 different worlds--from a zero-shaped ferris wheel to a nine-shaped orbiting space station--which children simply click on to reveal the games and puzzles hidden within. The title contains 10 activities, including a simple finger-counting game and a gallery full of pictures to paint. Each hidden game and puzzle familiarizes the child with numbers, yet no math skills are required. In Peter's Alphabet Adventure, animals help children learn the alphabet by associating their names-- Anthony the Albatross to Zelda the Zebra--with their species. A short poem underscores the sound of the letter and the name of the animal before the child embarks on an adventure with each one. Children will have fun matching animal tracks with the creatures who make them or eggs with the birds that lay them, all the while learning their ABCs. In Peter's Magic Adventure, children join Peter in familiar household and outdoor surroundings, yet find them filled with adventure. Unlike adventure games for older children, no one wins or loses. The object is simply to explore--children can leap from scene to scene, including a whimsical tour of the ocean floor and a trip to the far side of the moon, and animate almost every object with a click of the mouse. Peter & Santa Claus invites children to follow Peter to the North Pole where they are welcomed into a wonderland of animated toys and games. Children can learn how to assemble toys in Santa's play room; color a picture of Peter at the North Pole; click on reindeer who will break into a chorus of carols; and race to see who can pack the most toys into Santa's sleigh before he takes off. All of the Peter's titles have a suggested retail price of $29.95. Apple's StarCore group publishes and distributes software on CD-ROM for the Macintosh and on PCMCIA cards for personal digital assistants using Newton technology. Apple's StarCore titles are focused around six software categories: edutainment, sports, entertainment, reference, business applications and self-improvement. Apple is positioned to become the premiere worldwide publisher and distributor of multimedia and mobile computing software, which will be brought to market under both the Apple StarCore name and an affiliate label program. MOVED OVER PR NEWSWIRE AFTER 8:15 AM, EDT, MONDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 1993. Apple's StarCore Group Announces New Line Of Software For Newton MessagePad And Compatibles LAS VEGAS, Nevada--November 15, 1993--Apple Computer Inc.'s StarCore, a new software publishing and distribution group within the company's Personal Interactive Electronics (PIE) division, has announced more than a dozen new titles for the Newton MessagePad and other products based on Newton technology. All these titles are scheduled to be released nationwide before Christmas 1994. Apple's StarCore software library, ranging from games to reference applications to business titles, will augment the entertainment and utility value of the MessagePad and other products based on Newton technology. Software titles are formatted either on PCMCIA cards that slot into the Newton device, or on floppy diskettes. Titles released on diskettes can be transferred from either a Macintosh or Windows- based personal computer to a Newton device, using the optional Newton Connection kit. Software companies which have already committed to exclusive distribution through Apple's StarCore affiliate label program for Newton titles include, Avalon Engineering, Inc.; Dubl-Click Software; Ex Machina, Inc.; Fingertip Technologies, Inc.; Great Plains Software; Pastel Development; Saltire Software, Inc.; Slate Corp.; and State of the Art, Inc. For people needing background information on major corporations, StarCore is publishing Fortune 500: Guide to American Business, which puts an enriched electronic version of the Fortune 500 and Service 500 information right at their fingertips. Users can access a wide range of topics including sales per employee; five-year financial performance; sales history; profits and earnings per share; and income as a percentage of assets for America's largest businesses. In addition, users can search and sort, compare five-year performance of two companies and prepare graphs. Fortune 500: Guide to American Business retails for a suggested retail price of $99.95. Fodor's '94 Travel Manager: Top U.S. Cities will put all the information travelers would find in eight separate hardcopies of Fodor's city guides in the palms of their hands. Within each city, users can view their location and receive detailed driving directions from one place to another, taking into account one-way streets and turn restrictions; query local restaurants for their menu offerings and credit card policies; and find addresses and phone numbers for businesses and hotels. In addition, users can even access elusive information, such as ATM and fast food locations. The suggested retail price is $119.95. Money Magazine Business Form, uses templates to organize and fill out the most commonly needed business and personal finance forms including expense reports, sales invoice/order quotations and project schedules. The suggested retail price is $49.95. The title comes on a floppy diskette that users can download from their personal computer to their Newton device. For people on the lookout for smart new ways to manage their finances Apple will also publish Money Magazine Financial Assistant. "Financial Assistant" helps users manage most everyday financial decisions including loans, budgets, property transactions and investments by automatically making all the necessary calculations. "Financial Assistant" will be available this fall on a floppy diskette that can be downloaded to a Newton device. The suggested retail price is $59.95. On the entertainment side, Apple is publishing Dell Crossword Puzzles & Other Games, a fun-filled electronic book containing hundred of puzzles, cryptograms and word searches from the "master" of brainteasers. A great feature of the software is that it will give the user "hints," if requested, such as circling incorrect letters. The suggested retail price is $79.95. An abbreviated version of this product, Dell Crossword Puzzles, also comes on a floppy diskette for a suggested retail price of $49.95. For murder mystery fans, Apple is publishing Columbo's Mystery Capers, which pits the player and the Newton device against some of the most quirky, under-handed and money-hungry murderers ever to hit the small screen. Each of the 50 picture-based "whodunits," which can be solved in a matter of minutes, opens with an artist's rendering of the crime scene and a text introduction. The player's challenge: to ferret out the evidence hidden in the picture--it could be love letters, a train schedule or even a school of fish--and catch the murderer. Columbo's Mystery Capers carries a suggested retail price of $79.95. Additional new floppy diskette software available from affiliate labels distributed by Apple's StarCore group this fall includes: ContactPad: allows Newton users to manage information relating to their contact database, including appointments, phone calls and notes. The suggested retail price is $149.95. Day-Timer Meeting & Expense Pack: automatically organizes expenditures by type, account and business trip, and assists users in planning, conducting and following up on meetings. The suggested retail price is $129. Expense It!: allows any business person who travels to easily record and compile expenses on their Newton device and then upload the files to popular spreadsheets used on personal computers. The suggested retail price is $139.95 Fingertip for Golf: a personal, mobile golf scoring product designed for use while the player is actually on the links. The software incorporates club usage, yardage, shot results, fairways and greens hit during 20 rounds of golf to evaluate the player's strengths and weaknesses. The suggested retail price is $159. GoFigure: combines more than 15 different calculators into one easy-to-use program, allowing users to instantly compute everything from food measurement conversions to calculus problems. The suggested retail price is $79.95. Personal Time & Billing: Allows the mobile professional to capture and assign time and expense information for clients or projects. The suggested retail price is $149. PocketCall: gives users access to on-line communications services, including CompuServe and America On-Line, to obtain news, visit special interest groups, exchange mail or even call a corporate computer system. The suggested retail price is $149. PresenterPad: provides business people with the tools to create and manage slide presentations and pre-scripted speeches, and turns their Newton device into a mini teleprompter. The suggested retail price is $89. Apple's StarCore group publishes and distributes software on CD-ROM for the Macintosh and on PCMCIA cards and floppy diskettes for the Newton technology platform. Apple's StarCore titles are focused around six software categories: edutainment, sports, entertainment, reference, business applications and self-improvement. Apple is positioned to become the premiere worldwide publisher and distributor of multimedia and mobile computing software, which will be brought to market under both the StarCore name and an affiliate label program. Editor Note: A golf scoring program? I just knew there was a reason I wanted a Newton. More big news is that the System software for PowerPC is now in beta-testing. This is exciting news since it looks like Apple will be able to keep to it's planned release schedule. MOVED OVER PR NEWSWIRE AFTER 8:15 AM, EDT, MONDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 1993. Macintosh System Software for PowerPC Goes Beta; More Developers Commit to Macintosh Platform on PowerPC LAS VEGAS, Nevada--November 15, 1993--Apple Computer, Inc. today announced that it has passed a major milestone in the development of Macintosh systems based on the PowerPC microprocessor. System 7 for PowerPC has reached the beta stage, which means that development work for the software has been completed and is now undergoing final testing. System 7 is the operating system for Macintosh personal computers. Apple made the announcement at the COMDEX show, which opened here today. Additionally, six more key developers from around the world announced support for the Macintosh with PowerPC platform. "Reaching beta for System 7 on PowerPC means we're right on track and on schedule for the delivery of the first Macintosh systems based on PowerPC in the first half of 1994," said David Nagel, general manager and vice-president of the Company's AppleSoft division. "This is one of the most significant milestones of this project and things are really looking good." Macintosh systems based on PowerPC will be compatible with thousands of current Macintosh software applications, which means that customers will be able to run existing Macintosh applications on newer systems based on PowerPC. "Developers and early customers are lining up behind the platform. They're especially pleased with the high levels of compatibility and with the exceptional performance of native applications," said Pierre Cesarini, manager for PowerPC system software in AppleSoft. Applications written especially for System 7 on PowerPC ("native" applications) will feature groundbreaking performance. "It took us less than a week to have an early version of Painter up and running native on a PowerPC processor-based Macintosh and we already seen speed improvements of 2 to 4 times versus the Intel version of Painter running on a Pentium! It's really amazing," said Mark Zimmer, president of Fractal Design Corp., developer of Painter - a breakthrough graphic application that simulates natural media. "We have been impressed by what we have seen so far, it looks really promising for Apple's future." New developers show support --------------------------- Six additional third-party Macintosh developers, spanning the U.S. and Europe, today announced plans to deliver new versions of their applications that tap the power and performance of Macintosh with PowerPC. The six developers include the following: -- ABVENT SA, France-based developers of ZOOM, a three-dimension modeling and rendering package targeted principally for product and industrial design use. -- Brossco Oy, Finland-based developers of Voyant, a graphical reporting tool for relational databases. -- CTM Development SA, Switzerland-based developers of personal communications and telephony applications, including VoiceAccess, a line of voice-mail solutions, and TeleSearch CD-ROM based telephone directory solutions. -- Dantz Development Corp., a leading worldwide supplier of backup software for standalone and networked Macintosh computers including Retrospect, Retrospect Remote, DiskFit Direct, and DiskFit Pro. -- Graphsoft, Inc., developers of a range of software products for engineers, architects, illustrators, and designers, including MiniCad, a 2D/3D CAD package, Blueprint, a 2D CAD application, and Azimuth, a mapping program. -- Hi Resolution Ltd., U.K.-based developers of several applications desktop control and network control, monitoring, and management products for education and corporate markets, including MacPrefect, MacVisa, and MacSupervisor. This brings the total number of developers who have announced applications support on Apple's PowerPC platform to 24. __________________________________________ > STR Mail Call "...a place for the readers to be heard" """"""""""""" STReport's MailBag """""""""""""""""" Messages * NOT EDITED * for content ----------------------------------- The mailbox here at Mac Report HQ has been jammed lately as mail order houses attempt to entice me to purchase some of their fine wares for the Holiday Season. It's not that I don t want to fill yet another Syquest cart with yet another "must have" program, it's just that, for some strange reason, my creditors insists that I pay my bills each month. Go figure. Anyhow, until I win the lottery, I'll have to content myself with "window shopping". Be that as it may, here's the "picks of the litter". So to speak. With the Holiday Season fast approaching, what better way to make your Mac Report Editor say, "Bah, Humbug" than to remind him that tax season is also just around the corner. The folks at Chipsoft evidently had that in mind when they sent me a reminder to purchase MacInTax. Lots of other bargains abound in their flyer too. If you need tax-prep software, give them a call at 602-295-3110. Gold Disk sends notice that, "Now It's Easy To Create Spectacular Multimedia & Slide Presentations!". Gee whiz. Where am I gonna find software to help me do that? Hey! What a coincidence! Gold Disk just happens to publish a program that does just that. Astound. All kidding aside, it looks pretty neat. The user can animate text and charts, add QuickTime movies and music, add buttons for interactivity and more. One can even distribute across platforms with the included runtime players. If presentations are your bag, call Gold Disk at 1-800-982-9888. You get $300 off the list price and Special Edition MusicBytes and Mr. Sound FX thrown in for free. Plenty of catalogs arrived this week as well. MacConnection (1-800-800- 2222), ClubMac (1-800-258-2622), Tiger Software (1-800-666-2562)and Mirror Technologies (1-612-633-4450). If you want a catalog, give them a call. Speaking of giving a call, when you call any company mentioned in Mac Report, please let them know that you heard about them in STReport. Thanks! That's it for this week. As always, please feel free to send your comments or questions to me at: Compuserve: 70323,1031 GEnie: R.NOAK America OnLine: STReportRN ********************************************************************** IMPORTANT NOTICE! ================= STReport International Online Magazine is available every week for your reading pleasure on DELPHI. STReport's readers are invited to join DELPHI and become a part of a friendly community of enthusiastic computer users there. SIGNING UP WITH DELPHI ====================== Using a personal computer and modem, members worldwide access DELPHI services via a local phone call JOIN --DELPHI -------------- Via modem, dial up DELPHI at 1-800-695-4002 then... When connected, press RETURN once or twice and... At Password: type STREPORT and press RETURN. DELPHI's Basic Plan offers access for only $6.00 per hour, for any baud rate. The $5.95 monthly fee includes your first hour online. For more information, call: DELPHI Member Services at 1-800-544-4005 DELPHI is a service of General Videotex Corporation of Cambridge, MA. Try DELPHI for $1 an hour! For a limited time, you can become a trial member of DELPHI, and receive 5 hours of evening and weekend access during this month for only $5. If you're not satisfied, simply cancel your account before the end of the calendar month with no further obligation. If you keep your account active, you will automatically be enrolled in DELPHI's 10/4 Basic Plan, where you can use up to 4 weekend and evening hours a month for a minimum $10 monthly charge, with additional hours available at $3.96. But hurry, this special trial offer will expire soon! To take advantage of this limited offer, use your modem to dial 1-800-365-4636. Press <RET> once or twice. When you get the Password: prompt, type IP26 and press <RET> again. Then, just answer the questions and within a day or two, you'll officially be a member of DELPHI! TOP TEN DOWNLOADS (11/17/93) ---------------------------- STORM 1.00 STREPORT #9.46 NEW AHDI FROM ATARI STORM 1.01 PATCH DELPHI LOGON FOR STORM DOCS FOR XCONTROL 1.31 THRONE11.LZH PACMAN ON E'S LIQPIXEL.LZH 3D MAP OF THE EARTH DELPHI-It's getting better all the time! ********************************************************************** ATARI/JAG SECTION (III) ======================= ATC 7.500 - 0.625 at 4:05 on 1101100 shares > From the Atari Editor's Desk "Saying it like it is!" """""""""""""""""""""""""""" by Dana P. Jacobson I'd like to take this opportunity to make a sad announcement about a loss in the Atari community. A few days ago, Current Notes Editor/Publisher Joe Waters posted a note on CompuServe. Last month, former Current Notes ST Editor Frank Sommers passed away. Sommers, a longtime member of the Current Notes staff, had recently "retired" from CN active duty, but was a steady "advisor" to Joe and the rest of the staff. His death was sudden. We here at STReport would like to express our sympathies to Frank's family, as well as his family at Current Notes. He will be missed. Waters mentioned in his post that he will soon be posting all of Sommers' articles and reviews to the online services, as soon as they are compiled for posting. As did Waters, I would recommend that you take an opportunity to read some of those articles. Frank Sommers was an avid Atari user and his writings were quite good. To all who knew Frank, either personally or through his work at Current Notes; I'm sure that you'd agree. Again, our condolences... Not much happening on the Atari computing front these days. The focus, still, is on the Jaguar. Word has it that Jaguars have started shipping to retailers this past week; and authorized Falcon dealers have reported that they've been told to expect their orders to be shipped next week. There have been some rumblings that there may be some delays; and that some of the retailers might not get their full orders due to shortages. It also appears that the 50,000 Jaguars slated for this initial roll-out are almost sold out (see article below). All in all, the news seems to be positive. Atari appears to have done well, and the Jaguar has been gaining a lot of support and praise. Have you seen the television ad yet? I saw it earlier in the week on a New York station, via cable. It's a 2-parter (first half comes on, a few other commercials, and then the second half appears). I think the ad will get the word out, especially now that people are considering getting ready for the holidays. ---------------Reprinted from Newsbytes------------------- Atari Jaguar Intro'd, Can Atari Meet Demand? 11/09/93 SUNNYVALE, CALIFORNIA, U.S.A., 1993 NOV 9 (NB) -- The Atari Jaguar, introduced last Thursday in New York, has impressed Wall Street, but may not be able to meet demand. The enthusiastically received $250 video-game player is priced hundreds of dollars below the competing 3DO product and has the backing of IBM and Time Warner. About 50,000 Jaguars are expected to ship before Christmas, with 10,000 slated for the European market and the remaining 40,000 divided between stores in the New York and San Francisco areas. But Newsbytes sources said already the machines are almost sold out and manufacturing more, in time for a planned national rollout in January, could be difficult. IBM is contract manufacturing the Jaguar at its facilities in Charlotte, North Carolina. Atari said the Jaguar runs on a 64-bit chip and can display over 16 million colors as well as three-dimensional (3D) objects. A compact disc read-only memory (CD-ROM) drive can also be added. Several well-known game developers announced support for the system including: ID Software, Virgin Interactive Entertainment, Accolade, Interplay, Microprose Ltd., Microprose US, Gremlin Graphics Ltd., 21st Century Software, and UBI Software. The Jaguar is targeted to bring Atari back into markets now dominated by Nintendo and Sega. Atari has faced hard times, but Wall Street appears to be enthused about the company's comeback, as the stock price has climbed from dismal levels of below a $1 per share in April to close Friday at 11 and 3/8. The company is publicly held with the chairman holding 46 percent and Time Warner holding another 25 percent. (Linda Rohrbough/19931108/Press Contact: Monique Marchi, Cunningham Communications for Atari, tel 408-982-0400, fax 408- 982-0403) ___________ As you've probably noticed, the big news in the computing arena this week is COMDEX, finishing up as we speak. Atari, for the first time in a few years, did not officially attend this year for whatever reason(s). However, it's been noted that Atari's Garry Tramiel is in attendance. Apparently the Falcon is on display at the Motorola booth and the Jaguar is on display at the IBM booth. Although I don't know the extent of the displays, it is good to know that Atari has some presence at this major industry show! As I mentioned in a few of my initial offerings a few weeks ago, we're doing some re-vamping of STReport, including the Atari coverage. At that time, I mentioned that I'm looking to increase coverage of the major online services as well as other areas; and that I'm also trying to beef up the Atari staff. Well, I hope to be able to announce one, and perhaps as many as three new staff members within the next week or so. We're working on some ideas at the moment, so until those details have been finalized, I won't mention any names yet! At the moment, all that I'll say is that Delphi will be well represented. I'll be focusing on CIS next, and then GEnie. I'm also working on getting some coverage from Europe, as well. Things _are_ looking up. Well, with what appears to be an issue "dominated" by COMDEX coverage this week, we'll cut out shorter than usual this week. As we learn more about what's happening with the "Cat", we'll make sure to let you all know. And please, if there are comments, suggestions, questions, or even complaints - let me know. I'm interested in hearing from you. Until next time... -Dana ___________________________________________________ > ONLINE WEEKLY STReport OnLine The wires are a hummin'! """"""""""""""""""""""""""""" PEOPLE "R" TALKING ==================== On CompuServe ------------- compiled by Joe Mirando Hello again friends and neighbors. I just had a wierd thought (another weird thought, actually). Wouldn't it really freak you out to find out that I was not a real person, but an interactive computer program that could scan the libraries here on CompuServe and winnow out the good stuff for you? Well, it might not freak _you_ out, but it _would_ freak my fiancee out (although I think she believes that I've had some sort of electronic implants already anyway). Well, at any rate, Thanksgiving is this coming week and Christmas is only a month after that. It looks like there will be a good supply of Jaguars (at least in New York and San Francisco) for the holidays. If someone had told me last year that Atari would have product available for Christmas I would have told them that they were nuts. Okay, enough of this. Let's get on with the reason we're here in the first place... the great information available every week here on Compuserve. From the Atari Productivity Forum ================================= Myles Cohen, one of the regulars here on CompuServe, asks: "Does anyone know how to diagnose and fix a cartridge port... It used to work until I did something that involved my scanner... which caused it to not work any more... Now everything on the MEGASTE works normally...except the fershlugginer cartridge port... I've already asked this...but never got an answer...And no...I can't take it to a repair shop...because I use it every day...and it works beautifully except for the two progs that use the port...one of which is Notator...even if I knew of a repair shop in my area...which I don't..." Sysop Bob Retelle tells Myles: "What happened with the scanner when the cartridge port stopped working..? I'm not sure if the cartridge lines are buffered electrically or not.. that would be a good place to start. There's also the possibility that the actual cartridge connector has been loosened from the motherboard traces. It might be a good idea to try resoldering the connections with a low-powered soldering pencil." Myles fills Bob in: "I don't know...but the scanner was the last thing I had plugged into the port when it stopped working... Not being a hardware person...I have no idea what that last sentence means...nor how to go about it..." Bob counts off a couple of possibilities for Myles: "If you remember the problems Brad has had with his ST, the trouble in both cases turned out to be an IC chip that goes between the sensitive internal cirtuitry of the computer and the "outside world"... The chip effectively "buffers" the computer from the static electricity, random voltage spikes on the telephone line, and all kinds of unfriendly influences like that. In many cases, these "buffer chips" will give their "lives" to protect the rest of the system from these things. Replacing them is generally a pretty easy operation, and the chips themselves are fairly common and inexpensive. It's almost like replacing a blown fuse. Now the ones Brad had trouble with were on the MIDI port and the RS-232 serial port.. I'm not sure if the cartridge port has similar "buffers" or not... it would be good electrical design to have them, but they do add to the cost of the computer. (I'll see if I can trace the lines on my 520 and try to tell if there's anything I can identify as buffering on the cartridge port). That's an electronic possibility... the other thing I mentioned is a "mechanical" possibility. In inserting and removing cartridges and other devices, there's a lot of physical force applied to the joints where the actual cartridge socket is soldered onto the computer's motherboard. Over time, that force can break the tiny solder bonds that make the electrical connections. Sometimes it will result in erratic operation as the board flexes and causes the connections to open and close, and other times it can just render the connector completely inoperative... (this is a common problem with most motherboard mounted connectors like joystick connectors and keyboard sockets). As long as there isn't any serious damage to the motherboard itself, the fix is to carefully re-solder the connections. Either solution (assuming that's the problem) will require some electronics expertise.. the buffer chips on the ST are all soldered to the motherboard, so replacing one is not just a matter of unpluging it from a socket. If you know anyone who's done electronics repair, it would be fairly simple for them to do for you... nothing is Atari specific, or requiring any special info. Any electronics repair shop could do the re-soldering or chip replacement if it turns out that's the solution." Myles gives us some more information about his predicament: "There are new developments... I've been on the phone with a distant...from me...electronix guru who listened to my tale of woe and suggested that I should use a multi-tester on the outside pins...first and last...of the cartridge port on the MEGASTE to see if there was conductivity...my reading showed zero... He then told me that the MegaSTE's cartridge port is protected a 1/2 Amp microfuse narked F-121 and which can easily be found on the motherboard very close to the port...that all I had to do was to test it for conductivity...which if I got a zero reading needs to be replaced...I got a zero reading... Now all I have to do is find a 1/2 Amp microfuse to replace it...I guess that Best Electonics is my best bet... What a great diagnostician you turned out to be...Just look at the line on the top of this message that I quote from your pevious note..." Well Myles, good luck with your cartridge port problem... at one time or another, every computer owner has to deal with problems like this. Luckily, there are people like Bob Retelle to help the rest of us out. Meanwhile, Elaine Eedson asks about a program to make using CompuServe even easier: "Could anyone give me any information about navigation programs for Atari ST that are comparable to CIM. I'm looking for one that can be used and act like CIM." Jim Ness tells Elaine: "There are no CIM equivalents for the ST. CIM is a CompuServe product, and CompuServe has only made PC and Mac versions available. There also is no other similar program, in terms of navigating by Point-and-Click methods. There is QuickCIS, a true navigator program. QuickCIS quickly gathers all mail and messages for you, and then logs off. You read it all offline, and your replies can be posted on your next call. QuickCIS can be found in Library 4 here." Stefan Daystrom of Barefoot Software tells Elaine: "CIM itself is only available in IBM/compatible and Mac versions. If you _really_ need something _just like_ CIM, the only way on the Atari would be to run an IBM or Mac emulator (typically involving adding hardware). However, if you're paying for the use of your account, why spend time online "live", with _whatever_ user interface, when you can use an _automated_ navigator that'll log on, capture all the messages you're interested in, log off, let you read them and reply to them at any speed you want ("off the clock"), and then log on again for just a minute or two to upload all your replies? _That_ you can get for the Atari with QuickCis. (Also get QCMsg_II, an improved message reader that works with QuickCis. You _can_ you QuickCis by itself, but you'll have a lot more flexibility in reading and replying to messages if you use QCMsg_II with it.) An automated navigator such as QuickCis will cut your connect time with CompuServe _way_ down. If you have enough (offline!) time, you can then use that to expand to reading other areas of CompuServe that you might not have been able to afford if always using it "live". It'll also cut down the amount of time your phone line at home is tied up with modem calls..." Take it from me Elaine, QuickCis is the way to go! Now for "something completely different" from Rob Rasmussen: "My ST knows exactly what month/day/year and time it is even though I no longer have my DeskCart or any other clock installed! At least sometimes it does, right now for example. I have not set the clock in the XCONTROL panel (I hardly ever do). I turned my computer and hard drive on today (Megafile 60) and used the programs TouchUp, Prism Paint, PicSwitch, QuickCIS, EdHAK, Hotwire, Maxifile and maybe a few others. But nowhere did I set the time. When I noticed this the other day I thought later I'd imagined it! DeskCart used to be my time keeper, but I took it out a few months ago. The CALendar accessory also displays the correct month, day and year. This is really odd! I know some HD's have clocks - could it be retaining the time from when I used to have DeskCart? Somehow I don't think so but I have no other ideas. How can this possibly be happening?!! <g> Not that I'm complaining, I like not having to set the clock!" Sysop Bob Retelle tells Rob: "What kind of hard drive interface do you have..? Some of them have clocks built-in as an additional feature. The way these things work is that there has to be an external clock of some kind that keeps regular daily time... then when you boot up your ST, some kind of AUTO folder program has to read the time of day out of the external clock and put it into the ST's internal clock. (For example, I have a clock chip that hides in an IC socket that's installed under one of the TOS ROM chips in my ST... and an AUTO folder program that reads the time into the ST's internal clock at boot up..) If you *don't* have anything in your AUTO folder that would read the time out of something... and you *don't* have anything that would store the current time-of-day when your ST is turned off, maybe it's time to take it in for its 50,000 mile exorcism..." Rob tells Bob: "I don't know about the hard drive interface - the Megafile just plugs into the ST's hard drive port. My auto programs are Shadow, Warp 9, Desk Manager, Spooler, Codekeys, LGS, Hotwire and REGACC (for Lookit and Popit). Nothing I know of here that would set the clock. I used to have Codehead's CLOCKSET in the auto folder, but removed it when I took out DeskCart. Nowhere in the Megafile manual did I see mention of a clock. Totally strange!" Rob tells Bob about one interesting finding: "I just did a cold boot and after all the auto programs loaded, I checked the control panel, it was the wrong time (April, '89). I loaded a few other programs to see where this odd (but rather nice) time-keeping ability kicks in. Using QuickCIS to call Compuserve is what does it!!!! I made a Normal call, captured an announcement, a few messages and lib descriptions , then it logged off. The Xcontrol panel now displays the correct date and time! 7:31 AM 11/16/93. Any files I save are saved with the correct time. This is one bug that I consider a feature, but who can explain it? I know Hotwire has a clock, but other than calling CIS, nothing in my system could be retaining the time, unless it's the ghost of DeskCart. It resented being replaced by the scanner! Seriously, could CIS be setting my clock???" Jon Sanford tells Rob: "I think it is a feature of QuickCIS to set the system clock if it is off by more than a certain ammount. Amazing what little bits of info stick after reading a doc. 4 or 6 times...." Rob re-reads the documentation and tells Jon: "Well, you're right! There it is, kinda hidden in the docs :^}. How come I never knew about this? Maybe since I had the cartridge clock I ignored this nifty feature." Bob Retelle jumps in and adds: "Wow.. I knew QuickCIS was a good program, but this is pretty amazing..! Er.. that is.. Of course.. just another special little advantage of using CompuServe and QuickCIS.." Jim Ness, the creator of of QuickCis, tells us: "That was a feature requested by James Port. He had a 520ST with no clock, but wanted his .MSG files to have a real timestamp. So, I worked out a routine which compared the CIS time to the ST time, and if it was off by more than 24 hours the clock would be set to CIS time. The 24 hour deadband was to account for someone calling in at approx. midnight, or someone calling across a time zone or three." While on the subject of calling up an on-line service, Stefan Daystrom talks a bit about Alan Page's latest "baby", STORM: "This isn't exactly a bug, but I thought I'd point out one other problem with your 7-scanline med rez font besides readability (and it bothers me _more_ than the readability <grin!>): It makes Storm _slow_!!!!! Well, what it does is it makes graphics accelerators like TurboST which accelerate the stock fonts (in TurboST's case, 8x16, 8x8, and 6x6) unable to kick in, thus reducing Storm to standard GEM speeds (which makes it seem real slow compared to Flash, which _does_ run at TurboST speeds). I recall reading a message where you said it you were planning to handle this by a special emulation; does that mean it could not be combined with other emulations? (On the other hand, do I still need to use Vidtex on CIS just to be able to download using CIS B protocols, as I did in Flash, or can I just use the same TTY emulation for CIS as I do for most BBSs I call? If the latter, then I'm less worried about it being a special TTY emulation that might use the 8X8 font in med rez...)" Alan Page tells Stefan (and the rest of us): "Actually, ALL my GEM text is done using custom code, no matter what the font. Much of the speed comes from trying to update large blocks, rather than one character at a time. I thought it was rather fast, actually. CIS-B will work with any of the terminal emulations. I normally log on to CIS with VT100. VIDTEX, however, does have an option in the setup to switch to an 8 scanline font, with 21 lines in medium rez. Select "Emulations" in the Settings menu, click on VIDTEX, then click on Config. Warning: switching will erase the terminal screen! When I finally publish some source, people will be able to customize the emulations extensively, including the ability to use stock GEM text." Stefan Daystrom tells Alan: "Hm, I may have crossed circuits to jump to conclusions <grin / red face>! I don't have a 9600/14400 modem yet, so my sense of speed was not based on _online_ speed (I've never seen it get behind relative to the RD light on my modem, though it somehow _feels_ as if the pacing is different than I'm used to!) as much as the speed with which the window redraws when I flip between the capture buffer and terminal windows. But now that I look at it closer, the delay I see is probably just the window drawing white behind the text, when it's topped, before the text is drawn. If I'm spoiled by even _greater_ speed, I realize now that's it's from using QCMsg_II, which doesn't _need_ to redraw the window when I flip between messages, _only_ the text. So _obviously_ it's going to be faster since it has less to do! So you're right, the text is actually rather fast! Sorry for making assumptions..." From the Atari ST Arts Forum ============================ Shawn Laughnin asks: "Does the Atari require a special (i.e. Atari) joystick? I remember a time you could buy a host of generic joysticks in chain stores. Its been a while since I've noticed them ." Sysop Bob Retelle tells Shawn: "Yup, the "Atari Joystick" is a thing of the past, just like most things Atari.. Used to be any joystick had to be "Atari compatible"... now they're all Nintendo.. I wonder why that is..." Master Sysop Ron Luks adds his own thoughts: "Yes, the Atari uses a special joystick. There used to be scads of different brands of joysticks that worked on your atari (anything that used to be compatible with the former industry standard Atari 2600 game machine and 8-bit computers) but these are becoming hard to find." Rob Rasmussen asks about "doing" graphics with some of the whiz-bang graphics packages out there: "...The positioning of 16 colors/shades of gray in the palette - that's what I don't get. I'm used to coming from the other direction, where I create a picture in Prism Paint, starting on a blank screen with default colors in the palette which I can change. But how does a scanned picture, or the software TouchUp, decide which position in the palette a gray, black or white will be? Even if I can use the feature in Degas Elite and PP that maps the colors gradually between any two, I'm still stuck with maybe 2 objects on the screen that I want to be different colors, but they can't be because they're in the same palette position. If I scan a picture lighter, there may be more shades of gray and maybe certain pixels would be in different pal positions, but the picture looks undefined with not enough detail. I saved some scans as GIFs, others as PC1. I only have a color monitor. When I try to load a GIF, I get a dialog with a 'gray scale' button (using this makes everything too dark) and the dimensions of the GIF which I find will not fit on the screen. Other scans will all fit on the screen. It looks like the GIF really is just the top of the scan - there is no way to scroll or print it. Any comments anyone? This really is all a puzzle I hope to understand one day!" Lee Seiler of Lexicore Software tells Rob: "First install EP10 so you have access to 4096 colors, Next use Prism Paint for the whole job. Hold the Alt Key when booting to get the Grey scale Select dialog. Then, when you load the color pic it will auto Grey scale, the machine pallet will also have the correct Grey scales auto set. Now when you save out as a PI file it will be in 8 grey scales including the required desk top reserved pallet." Rob asks for clarification: "I have an ST, not an STE. I thought I was limited to 512 colors. What is EP10 and where can I get it? If I can get 4096 colors then this is incredible!" Lee explains to Rob: "Many, many ST owners have installed the video shifter from JRI but never realized that the 4096 colors were not always there, this is also the case with the STE, Mega STE, and TT. Many programs which could use the 4096 don't, due to a little tic in the OS, EP10 deals with this problem and while no difference is apparent, things like GIF and Spectrum Images are much richer and look better because you see "Better or More correctly matched colors" and with software that does access the full 4096 you see a slight increase in speed, or so I am told. You get EP10 Free with all Lexicor purchases, we put it on all current Utilitiy and resource disk sold with Lexicor products." Rob tells Lee: "I looked for EP10 on my Lexicor disks, but those are older programs, so I guess it wasn't included. You mentioned the JRI video shifter - is this required for an older ST to get 4096 colors? I would LOVE to have more screen colors than 512 to choose from. Often I want colors that are between 2 available ones that are right next to each other. The picture I'm starting out with is a mono IMG and PI3. Is this what I could gray scale before converting to low rez PNT or PI1 ? If I can do this on an ST with EP10, then I'll need to get that or something similar." Lee explains exactly what is needed: "Yes and no. You do need the JRI hardware first, if you have the STE, the 4096 are there but unaccesable. EP10 fixes the bug for all 4096 systems no matter how it happens. If you are using the PI3 you should be able to load it into a grey scale Prism paint mode of at least 16 shades of grey. This then is saved as a Gif which can then be reloaded into a color Gif which you can then reset from grey to color and save as color. EP10 is in all our libs as far as I know, knock on Ringo's door and ask him to point you at it or E-Mail it to you." Mike Myers asks Sysop Ron Luks about converting Atari files over to DOS (I know, I know, I've mentioned this a lot... but the question keeps getting asked, so I guess that not everyone reads this column all the time [and you know who you are]): "Is there a program available which will allow the conversion of ATARI ST .lzh files to IBM .gif files / .jpg files and back? I have an IBM and a friend has a ST. We have looked in the forums under viewers, utilities, and anything else we could think of." Before Ron can answer, Sysop Bob Retelle tells Mike: "There should be a conversion program that will run on an ST and convert DEGAS format pictures to GIF, which your friend could display on his IBM.. It's been a looong time since I remember seeing it, but I think its filename was something like CNV2GIF. There should also be something similar that will convert Spectrum 512 pictures to GIF format too, but the name of that one eludes me at this moment. As for converting the other way, there shouldn't be a need to convert GIFs and JPGs, since we have some pretty good viewer programs for the ST for those graphics formats." Ron Luks tells Mike: "LZH is a compression method. GIF is a picture file format. There is an LZH utility for the PC. (LZH files are created/processed witha utility called LHARC). Think of LZH as another type of ARC or ZIP files. GIF is a graphics picture format like TIFF, or PCX, etc. One has nothing to do with the other. I dont know of any JPEG utilities for the Atari ST." Boris Molodyi jumps in and adds: "As I recall, GEMVIEW loads JPEG files (and so you can save them in different format). Also, Studio Photo from Compo can load JPEG pics." A column containing both the words "Atari" and "Graphics" wouldn't be complete without mentioning the Jaguar, Atari's hot new video game machine. Bob Retelle posts: "One thing I've been wondering though.. since Atari has said virtually nothing concrete about the Jaguar beyond the official Press Releases, and about the only other source of real information was the Press conference they held recently in New York, just what exactly is all the "Jaguar talk" you mentioned about..? There's a "lot of Jaguar talk" on the InterNet newsgroups too... but most of it is just rumors and unfounded speculation, along with the "3DO vs Jaguar" flaming that never gets anywhere... Jaguar developers are under NonDisclosure Agreements, so they can't say anything, and the only other source of Jaguar "news" has been leaks from some of the companies working on games. It just seems that "a lot of Jaguar talk" would be pretty useless until we actually get to see and use the machines themselves... once that happens, I'm sure the areas here will pick up.." John Brenner tells Bob: "All the Jaguar talk on GEnie is trivial. Everone asking eachother if they saw the commercial. How great it looks. How well it is being marketed. Which store chain has confirmed if they are going to carry it. There is also some people talking about having ordered one and that some stores have already pre-sold hundreds of units. It's like a bunch of sports fans rallying around a sports team. Talking about the new uniforms, or the new stadium. No better, no worse. I have no interest in such things, but I have not bothered Ignoring permanently that CAT. Perhaps because I enjoy looking at so many happy people." From the Atari Vendor's Forum ============================= Rafael Hermoso asks: "Is Neodesk 4 out yet? If not, when? If so, where can I purchase it?" Rick Flashman of Gribnif Software tells Rafael: "No, NeoDesk 4 is not out yet. We've been forced to delay its shipping until early '94. Part of this delay was that we wanted to insure that Geneva was as bug-free as possible and that we had resolved any minor issued that might have arisen as of its initial release. We now believe this strategy has paid off, as we've been able to correct some minor problems with Geneva (that only showed up after shipping) and therefore we now have a substancially more solid package." John Brenner tells us: "After many years I am still using INTERLINK to do any BBS'ing outside of GEnie. I have just D/L a file on this system and did not remember how slow XMODEM transfer was. Are there any Interlink TXF files in the libraries that support the other protocals available on Compuserve. And which one is most recommended?" Jim Ness nudges John about "getting with it": "Geez, John, with all the terrific ST terminal programs out there, you are still using good old Interlink? There's Flash II, STalker, and now the shareware gem STorm... All three of those support CIS B and ymodem-g, the two fastest protocols." John tells Jim: "I used to have Flash before I got Interlink many years ago. I never looked at Flash II since I never liked Flash to begin with. I D/L STorm last week. I also dont' like very much the way it is set up. I have a friend who uses STalker. He has to buy another program to do on-line editing. So, I just don't see the need to change. I have a capture buffer, I can edit, save paste...everything I need. I use Alladin, you know where, and now it looks like I will use QuickCIS to log on here. So I really don't see why I should change. I only upgrade software that no longer suits my needs. I was starting to think I might need something for here since I couldn't get QuickCIS to dial, but all has now fallen into place and I think I'll be very happy with it. Thanks for writting it. I'll have to read the doc....there must be a fee for something that will save me so much money! <Grin>" From the Palmtop Forum ====================== Kent Peterson pats the Compuserve Sysops' proficiency at getting new files (like Kent's new programming language) "up and ready": "You guys are a lot faster than the sysops of some other forums. BTW, the HP folks seem to be going into a download frenzy on this little bit of Port technology, I decided to cast their way. Did you ever post PBASIC over there?" We're still waiting for and answer from BJ... that kind of negates the compliment in the first place, doesn't it?... Don Thomas of Atari Corp posts: "Every once in a while I am beginning to see messages in langauages other than English... German, for instance. It sure would be cool if CIS had some sort of translation process built-in... either on demand or automatically." Sysop BJ Gleason tells Don: "As a person who has done a lot of work with Natural Language Processing and such, it is a very tough, if not impossible task. One of the best jokes about it is: A program translates from russian to english and back. The program puts in the phrase: "The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak." It is translated to russian, and then the russian is fed back and the translation comes back as: "The wine is good but the meat is spoiled." Back on the subject of the Jaguar again, Don Thomas tells us: "I stopped by an Electronics Boutique this past weekend in Pleasanton, CA (40-50 miles East of San Francisco). I pretended to be Joe Blow consumer and observed two 3DO systems on a shelf. The salesman said they are not selling well, BUT he would love to take my pre-order for the Jaguar. He said he didn't know what game came with it or how many controllers, but that he couldn't find an end to the waiting list the store had established for the Jaguar. It felt good. My son even said this past Friday without me asking that all the kids at school were talking about the Jaguar (he's ten). He told me that he felt good telling his friends that his Dad worked at Atari." Well folks, I intended to use use information on other palmtops in this column but, as usual, I've run out of room. So c'mon back next week and see what else I can shoe-horn into this column. Just think of it as some little sports bar somewhere in Boston. A place where... oh heck, I've gone this far. I'd might as well say it... A place where everybody knows your name. It's easy to just leave your troubles at the door for a while and absorb some of the hints, tips, and information available on CompuServe. But if you don't subscribe to CompuServe, this column is the next-best thing. Just make sure that you remember to listen to what they are saying when... 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