ST Report: 29-Mar-96 #1213From: Bruce D. Nelson (aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 03/31/96-06:12:58 PM Z
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From: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson) Subject: ST Report: 29-Mar-96 #1213 Date: Sun Mar 31 18:12:58 1996 Silicon Times Report The Original Independent OnLine Magazine" (Since 1987) March 29, 1996 No. 1213 Silicon Times Report International OnLine Magazine Post Office Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32221-6155 STR Electronic Publishing Inc. A subsidiary of STR Worldwide CompNews Inc. R.F. Mariano, Editor Featured in ITCNet's ITC_STREPORT Echo Voice: 1-904-268-2237 10am-5pm EST STReport WebSite http://www.streport.com STR Publishing Support BBS THE BOUNTY INTERNATIONAL BBS Featuring: * 5.0GB * of File Libraries Mustang Software's WILDCAT! Client/Server BBS Version 5 95/NT Featuring a Full Service Web Site http://www.streport.com Join STReport's Subscriber List receive STR through Internet MULTI-NODE Operation 24hrs-7 days Analog & ISDN BRI Access 904-268-4116 2400-128000 bps V. 120-32-34 v.42 bis ISDN V.34 USRobotics I-MODEM NT-1 FAX: 904-292-9222 24hrs The Bounty STReport Support Central 1-904-268-4116 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 03/29/96 STR 1213 The Original Independent OnLine Magazine! - CPU Industry Report - Another Java Flaw!! - D. Packard Dies - Hayes & Zoom Sued!! - UltraEdit Tops! - ClarisWorks Updated - WinFax Pro Update - Wiring Russia - AT&T to Sell DSS - MSN at Million Users - PSX Million Sold - Atari Clearance! Apple Projects Huge Loss! Quarterdeck buys Datastorm! WildCat! 5 Ships! 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WEB SITE: http//www.streport.com CIS ~ PRODIGY ~ DELPHI ~ GENIE ~ BIX ~ FIDO ~ ITC ~ NEST ~ EURONET ~ CIX ~ USENET USPOLNET CLEVELAND FREE-NET ~ INTERNET ~ PROWL ~ FNET ~ AOL IMPORTANT NOTICE STReport, with its policy of not accepting any PAID advertising, has over the years developed the reputation of "saying it like it really is". When it comes to our editorials, product evaluations, reviews and over-views, we shall always keep our readers interests first and foremost. With the user in mind, STReport further pledges to maintain the reader confidence that has been developed over the years and to continue "living up to such". All we ask is that our readers make certain the manufacturers, publishers etc., know exactly where the information about their products appeared. In closing, we shall arduously endeavor to meet and further develop the high standards of straight forwardness our readers have come to expect in each and every issue. The Staff & Editors Florida Lotto - LottoMan v1.35 Results: 3/23/96: 5 of 6 numbers with 3 matches in 1 play >From the Editor's Desk... Well now. in these parts.. Spring has sprung! So has a great deal more. according to our snoops. AT&T and a few other Long Distance carriers are in a frantic tizzy. Yup! They've finally realized that their Golden Cash Cow is about to go the same route as the "wacky cows" in the UK. The Internet's voice modems has them all scurrying wildly, grabbing their lawyers on the way to find a hook or two that'll save the gouge they've enjoyed for far too many years. Its already the time for each and every telephone user coast to coast to contact the FCC and let the commission know they want the FCC to put AT&T and the other Carriers on notice that the Internet and all its features are HANDS OFF as far as regulating the use of voice modems is concerned. Let these FAT CAT LD Carriers earn their corporate profit income with NEW innovative services that enhance telephonic communications world wide. People should only know just how long HIGH SPEED, HIGH QUALITY communications have been "in the wings" with the "Bell Heads" simply sitting on the technology. T1 and T3 technology along with ISDN, which is the current rage. has been around since 1965! The World's Fair that year in New York City had video phones on display and working. Sort of reminds one of the way the gas companies bought up and killed the Fish Carburetor because of its very high gas mileage per gallon. Let the FCC know that you want the LD Carriers to keep their grubby hands off the voice modems and their usage on the Internet. Talk about pressure. a few manufacturers of voice modems are a bit nervous about the AT&T attitude and possible posture. So much so that one has suspended making the voice modems. Of course none will openly state they've been intimidated but you can bet that where there is smoke there is fire. Has anybody ever wondered why there is such a difference in the pricing of ISDN from geographical location to another in the USA?? Take a look at BellSouth's pricing structure from one state to another the variation just for the installation is hundreds of dollars. Compare Tennessee and Florida. Or, Tennessee and any other in the BellSouth area. It sure looks like its time to start asking some very pointed questions of the various Public Service Commissions in the areas mentioned. When are these Telephone Companies going to be finally rid of the "Bell Heads" who have been there, mucking up the market, far too long and really no longer "get it". Ralph. Of Special Note: http//www.streport.com STReport is now ready to offer much more in the way of serving the Networks, Online Services and Internet's vast, fast growing site list and userbase. We now have our very own WEB/NewsGroup/FTP Site and although its in its early stages of construction, do stop by and have a look see. Since We've received numerous requests to receive STReport from a wide variety of Internet addressees, we were compelled to put together an Internet distribution/mailing list for those who wished to receive STReport on a regular basis, the file is ZIPPED, then UUENCODED. Unfortunately, we've also received a number of opinions that the UUENCODING was a real pain to deal with. So, as of October 01,1995, you'll be able to download STReport directly from our very own SERVER & WEB Site. While there, be sure to join our STR list. STReport's managing editors DEDICATED TO SERVING YOU! Ralph F. Mariano, Publisher - Editor Dana P. Jacobson, Editor, Current Affairs Section Editors PC Section Mac Section Atari Section R.F. Mariano J. Deegan D. P. 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Send your subscription to: BBS Press Services, Inc. 8125 S.W. 21st Street Topeka, KS 66615 Or, to order by phone, Please Call: 1-913-478-3157 (Voice) 1-913-478-9239 (Data) 1-913-478-1189 (FAX) Checks, Mastercard, AMEX, Discover & Visa ok, Please include Full Name, Address, home Number, Card type, number & expiration date when ordering. If by mail, please sign your personal order. A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N FARGO PRIMERA PRO COLOR PRINTERS - 600DPI For a limited time only; If you wish to have a FREE sample printout sent to you that demonstrates FARGO Primera & Primera Pro SUPERIOR QUALITY 600dpi 24 bit Photo Realistic Color Output, please send a Self Addressed Stamped Envelope [SASE] (business sized envelope please) to: STReport's Fargo Printout Offer P.O. Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32205-6155 Folks, the FARGO Primera Pro has GOT to be the best yet. Its far superior to the newest of Color Laser Printers selling for more than three times as much. Its said that ONE Picture is worth a thousand words. Send for this sample now. Guaranteed you will be amazed at the superb quality. (please, allow at least a one week turn-around) A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N STReport Headline News LATE BREAKING INDUSTRY-WIDE NEWS Weekly Happenings in the Computer World Compiled by: Dana P. Jacobson Law Makes Feds 'Baby Sitter'? "This law will set a trend for Congress to start regulating the Internet, with the government acting as a great big baby sitter." So said director Gerry Berman of the Center for Democracy and Technology, a witness in yesterday's opening day of a trial on a new federal law that makes it a crime to transmit pornography over the Net. Scott Bradner, a Harvard University computer consultant and senior official on several Internet administrative bodies, echoed Berman's sentiments, adding, "I believe that the Internet of the future will be a combination of a promise of tremendous reachability and availability of knowledge ... and a perceived threat to the ability to control what the citizenry get. I personally would rather focus on the promise." As reported, plaintiffs in a lawsuit seek to block the Communications Decency Act, a new federal law that prohibits distribution to minors of "indecent" or "patently offensive" material over computer networks. A panel of three federal judges in Philadelphia is hearing the suit filed by dozens of plaintiffs, including the American Civil Liberties Union and online providers, including CompuServe, Prodigy and America Online. Reporter Rosa Michnya of United Press International says opening witnesses for the plaintiff emphasized a deep flaw in the new act. "The Internet is a global medium," said witness Brian Ek, vice president of government affairs for the Prodigy online service. "The content is coming from all over. This law has no effect on the individual in Denmark." Berman concurred, saying that about 30 percent of pornography on the Internet originates overseas. He told the court he thinks the problem of cyberporn would be best handled by parental control software such as SurfWatch, Cyber Patrol and NetNanny, which enables parents to block inappropriate material. While the law bans "indecent" speech on the Internet that is available to minors, opponents fear it also could be used to prosecute people who discuss abortion, or AIDS- and gay-related issues on the Internet. Author Patricia Nell Warren, who writes about gay issues, testified some people's definition of indecent goes "way beyond the seven dirty words banned by the Federal Communications Commission," adding, "The mere subject matter is patently offensive to some people." And Kiyoshi Kuromiya, who heads the Critical Path AIDS Project, told the judges' panel the Internet was a vital tool for dispensing information about AIDS prevention and treatment. Writes Michnya, "Kuromiya, who is HIV positive, said the often explicit information could help prevent children from being infected with the AIDS virus and should not be restricted." Journalist Dave Ivey of The Associated Press says the judges also heard testimony from a licensed sex therapist who said safe sex information should be available to minors on computer networks. William Stayton told the court, "Children have a right to know about themselves as sexual beings. They have a right to information that will protect them ... and help them make responsible decisions." Also, Ann Duvall, whose SurfWatch Software program is designed to allow parents to block sexually-explicit Net sites, took the court Net surfing, showing the judges World Wide Web pages in London and Paris and demonstrated how the software blocks Penthouse and Playboy. Later ACLU lawyer Stefan Presser told Ivey, "She conclusively demonstrated that SurfWatch is way more effective than having Uncle Sam peering into our bedroom and deciding what's appropriate for us to see and hear." And speaking with Randall Mikkelsen of the Reuter News Service, Presser commented that however the panel rules on the suit, he predicts the case will wind up before the U.S. Supreme Court. "The question is, who brings it up?" he said. "If we lose, we go, if they lose, they go." Plaintiff witnesses said the Net, because of the ease of access and because all users can contribute, bears little resemblance to television or radio. They argue it should have unlimited protection under the First Amendment, which would still bar child pornography and other types of speech that are banned or restricted. However, supporters of the ban -- whose witnesses are scheduled to testify next month -- say free speech groups are overreacting, and that the law applies only to the posting of indecent material on public areas of the Internet where it is likely to be seen by minors. Judge Questions Telecom Law One of three federal judges hearing a suit against a new law restricting indecent material in cyberspace has commented in court that the explosive worldwide popularity of the Internet came about because governments didn't interfere. U.S. District Judge Stewart Dalzell said yesterday, "The very exponential growth and utility of the Internet occurred precisely because governments kept their hands out of this and didn't set standards that everybody had to follow." Covering the trial in Philadelphia for United Press International, reporter Rosa Michnya said Dalzell's comments were in response to testimony from Scott Bradner, a technical consultant at Harvard University, who testified that the act would "stifle innovation" and that the strength of the Internet is its democratic "chaos." As reported, Bradner was one of the plaintiffs' lead-off witnesses in the suit over whether provisions of the Communications Decency Act are constitutional. Supporters contend they are simply trying to control the content available to minors, but Bradner and others argue senders or providers of information have no way of knowing a recipient's age. Attorney Marjorie Heins with the American Civil Liberties Union told UPI, "This law is technologically impossible to comply with unless you close down the entire Internet and start over ... and have a centralized system." (The ACLU is one of dozens of plaintiffs in the class-action lawsuit that includes library, newspaper and publishing associations, major on-line providers, including CompuServe, and more than 30,000 Internet users.) In court, plaintiffs' witnesses said that what is indecent to some is expressive to others. For instance, Carnegie Library Director Robert B. Croneberger testified the poem "'Twas the Night Before Christmas" brought complaints from some parents because a "nip of brandy" is taken. "Some people might not approve of parts of plays by Shakespeare, or the Bible and on and on." He said that trying to bring his online card catalog in line with the act would "contradict the mission of public libraries," adding that his definition of a library is "a place with material that offends everyone." Said Croneberger, "We feel very strongly that it's the parents' decision on what is appropriate for a child. (If) librarians are put into positions of having to make those decisions for other people's children, we will fail miserably." Also, Vanderbilt University professor Donna Hoffman told the court she thinks computer-based communication is a "revolution" on the scale of the Gutenberg press, has created an inherently "democratic form of communications" and that regulations arising from the Communications Decency Act "threaten the democratic nature of the Internet." During the government's cross-examination, federal attorneys try to take the court on what Associated Press writer Dave Ivey termed "the seamier side of cyberspace" and a site called "Bianca's Smut Shack." The government lawyers also showed that a computer search for information on Louisa May Alcott's book "Little Women" might have surprising results. Writes Ivey, "Their point-and-click tour in search of 'Little Women' turned up a sexually explicit site titled 'Hot Pictures of Naked Women!'" But when asked by Justice Department lawyer Jason Baron how she would find information on Alcott's novel, Hoffman said, "I would probably search for little plus women plus Louisa plus May plus Alcott." For its demonstration, the government, using the World Wide Web search engine called Infoseek, employed a broader search that did not include the 19th-century author's name. On this, ACLU attorney Stefan Presser commented, "I think the judges know that those pages wouldn't have appeared if they had included `Alcott' in their search. It was a pretty obvious attempt to try and shock the court - - one with minimal effect." UK Says Laws Can't Control Net Legislation in itself cannot control the burgeoning content of the Internet, Britain's technology minister has concluded. He proposes, instead, a voluntary approach to Net regulation led by industry. Speaking at a recent conference in London, Science and Technology Minister Ian Taylor said the failure of a recent attempt by a leading Internet company to restrict access to its service in Germany after a crackdown by authorities there showed the Internet still is largely beyond the law. Reporter Mark John of the Reuter News Service quotes Taylor as saying, "An imposed regulatory regime is not likely to solve all our problems. The British government's preference is for a voluntary approach. It is in the commercial interest (of industry) to meet public concerns." Taylor added the Internet's explosive growth had been largely the result of informational freedom and Britain is concerned that legislation might stunt further development of new services and companies hoping to use the network. The UK government has met with the newly-formed British Internet Service Providers' Association and backed the code of practice it was developing for its members, Taylor said. As noted, the European Parliament last month voted to seek a toughening of the law surrounding new media services and the European Council of Ministers is set to decide a common European approach to the issue in June. "The Council, along with the European Commission, is thought generally to oppose wider Internet legislation," Reuters observes. Apple Projects Huge Loss Apple Computer Inc. reports that it will lose up to $700 million in the current quarter, far exceeding Wall Street analysts' most pessimistic projections. The computer maker had already projected a substantial second quarter loss, but the $700 million shortfall would be the worst quarterly loss in the firm's history, far surpassing the $188 million loss the company reported in mid-1993. Over half the $700 million loss will go toward disposing of excess inventory, notes a statement issued by Apple Chairman and CEO Gilbert F. Amelio. A quarter of the loss will be related to job-cut expenses. "We find ourselves facing three major challenges," says Amelio. "irst, we anticipate that revenues and unit shipments will be substantially below the levels of last year's second quarter. Secondly, the slowdown in sales relative to our initial forecasts will contribute to sizable charges related to inventory valuation adjustments. Finally, as we've mentioned before, we will incur significant restructuring charges in order to realign the company for the future." Amelio adds that Apple will begin to outline specific plans for its recovery in May. "I'm confident at this point that I know what the problems are and that they are fixable," Amelio says. Researchers Find Major Flaw in Java A flaw has been discovered in Sun Microsystems Inc.'s Internet-based Java programming language that could enable online vandals to destroy files or damage computers that use Netscape Communications Corp.'s Navigator Web browser software. The Wall Street Journal reports this morning the flaw was discovered by a team of Princeton University reseachers and was acknowledged by the company. The paper says Sun plans to issue a repaired version of the language software. Journal reporter Don Clark quotes Edward Felten, a Princeton assistant professor of computer science who helped discover the flaw, as saying unscrupulous people who learned of the defect could boobytrap a Web page on the Internet, essentially seizing control of the browser software of any PC that tapped into that page. "The consequences of this flaw are as bad as they can be," Felten told the paper, saying vandals could read or delete an entire hard disk of data files. At Sun's Mountain View, California, headquarters, Marianne Mueller, a senior engineer specializing in security issues, acknowledged the problem, commenting, "This one is a serious bug." Alerted by the Princeton team on Friday, Sun already is testing a software fix it has developed for the program and hopes to distribute it to Netscape and other users in about two days so they can distribute updated versions of their Web browsers and related products. At Netscape, product manager Jeff Treuhaft told Clark, "We plan to fix it and get it out to our customers as fast as we can." Java originally was touted by Sun as a secure language, "but," writes Clark, "at least two other flaws have already been discovered in the technology, including a less- serious problem uncovered by the Princeton team last month." Mueller said the problems have been correctable details in the way the Java code is written, not problems with its basic design. Netscape Works on Java Bug While Netscape Communications Corp. is working with Sun Microsystems Inc. to resolve a security flaw found in Sun's Net-based Java programming language, Netscape officials also say actual damage to online computerists from the bug seems remote. In fact, Jeff Treuhaft, a Netscape manager in charge of the issue, told Sam Perry of the Reuter News Service his employer is not aware of any damage yet caused by the Java flaw, saying this is extremely unlikely. "We've got an amazing dragnet of communications between partners and customers and folks on the Net," Treuhaft added. "We haven't heard of anyone losing data or being maliciously attacked by these potential problems." As reported yesterday, a team of Princeton University researchers discovered that Java flaw that could enable computer vandals to boobytrap a World Wide Web page on the Internet, essentially seizing control of the browser software of any PC that tapped into that page. However, Treuhaft notes discovery of the fault was the result of an extremely rigorous study by academics and that it would be very difficult to exploit the flaw to cause damage. "The Princeton researchers are extremely smart people," he added, "and it's taken them literally weeks looking at the source code for Java to figure out that this problem exists." Treuhaft said Netscape -- whose popular Netscape Navigator Web browser interacts with Java- driven sites on the Net -- will examine Sun's fix when it is delivered this week and decide how best to write it into its own implementation. He declined to give a timetable for the solution to be available, but Perry reports customers normally could expect a fix within a few days. Refac Sues Hayes, Zoom A patent infringement suit has been brought against modem makers Hayes Microcomputer Products Inc. and Zoom Telephonics Inc. by Refac Technology Development Corp. The Dow Jones news service says Refac's suit alleges violation of a patent that covers basic data-compression procedures recommended by the International Telecommunication Union Standards Section (V.42 bis) standard, which most data modems currently use. Dow Jones quotes Refac officials as saying the firm has the exclusive worldwide right to license the patent, held by James A. Storer. "Refac also said it is pursuing patent-license negotiations on a non-exclusive basis with makers of modems and telecommunication products in which modem units use the V.42 bis standard," the wire service added. BBB Focuses on Cyber Business The umbrella organization for the nation's 137 Better Business Bureaus is urging businesses to adhere to ethical advertising and selling practices in the online marketplace. "The consumer marketplace is poised for a revolutionary expansion as a result of new opportunities presented by electronic commerce," says James Bast, president and CEO of the Arlington, Virginia-based Council of Better Business Bureaus. "The BBB urges companies and entrepreneurs that do business online to adhere to ethical marketplace practices. Only with consumer confidence can the vast potential of the Internet as a trustworthy, convenient and expedient place to do business be fully realized." The council is urging businesses that operate in cyberspace to: " Provide a physical location (address and phone number), so consumers can check on the firm's reliability with outside organizations, such as the BBB and consumer agencies; " Refrain from using advertisements that are untrue, misleading, deceptive, fraudulent, falsely disparaging of competitors or make insincere offers to sell; " Adhere to the basic principles embodied in the BBB Code of Advertising; " Comply with local, state and federal laws and regulations governing advertising and sales practices; " Refrain from using words in a company name that would mislead the public either directly or by implication; and " Refrain from unauthorized use of company names and logos. The council reports that it recently reached an agreement with an organization that advertised online under the name Internet Business Bureau. The IBB advertised consumer protection and business reliability reporting services that purported to be virtually identical to services provided by Better Business Bureaus. "We demanded that the company cease infringement of our trademarks, says Bast. "By using a mark confusingly similar to the Better Business Bureau's, the organization was likely to confuse the public and jeopardize the BBB's long-held reputation as the source of high caliber consumer protection services." According to Bast, the company agreed to change its name to Internet Business Broadcasting Inc. and to cease presenting itself as providing consumer protection services or screening advertisers. Borland Releases C++ Products Borland International Inc. has released Borland C++ 5.0, the latest version of its C and C++ programming language, and Borland C++ Development Suite 5.0, a set of five C++ software development tools. Borland C++ 5.0 provides a native 32-bit hosted environment that lets developers target multiple platforms, including Windows 95, Windows NT, Windows 3.1 and DOS. Borland C++ 5.0 also includes a new version of ObjectWindows Library (OWL) 5.0, Borland's application framework. Also provided are Microsoft Foundation Classes (MFC) compilation support and Visual Database Tools (VDBT), which helps programmers visually create high-performance database applications. Borland C++ Development Suite 5.0 includes Borland C++ 5.0; CodeGuard 32/16, a new version of Borland's automated bug detection and diagnosis tool; PVCS Version Manager, a tool that oversees changes to all elements in a software system; and InstallShield Express, which creates installation programs. Borland C++ Development Suite also includes AppAccelerator for Java, a just-in-time compiler which, according to Borland, makes Java applications run five to ten times faster. "We have designed both the Borland C++ Development Suite and Borland C++ 5.0 to be the fastest and most flexible development environments for software developers to build both 32- and 16-bit applications," says Richard Gorman, Borland's vice president of product marketing and product management. Borland C++ 5.0 sells for $349.95. Current owners of other Borland products, as well as owners of Microsoft Visual Basic, Microsoft Visual C++, Watcom or Symantec C or C++, can purchase the software for $249.95. Owners of previous versions of Borland C++ receive an additional $50 discount. Borland C++ Development Suite 5.0 is priced at $499.95. Current owners of other Borland products, plus owners of Microsoft Visual Basic, Microsoft Visual C++, Watcom or Symantec C or C++, can obtain the package for $349.95. Owners of previous versions of Borland C++ will receive an additional $50 discount. Mac ClarisWorks Updated Claris Corp. reports that it has released an updated version of ClarisWorks 4.0 for Macintosh, its integrated software package for home and small business users. The update -- ClarisWorks 4.0v4 for Macintosh -- includes improved drag and drop support, which allows users to more easily move information within ClarisWorks documents and to other documents and applications. The software also provides a ClarisWorks 4.0 to 2.x/3.0 file converter that lets users save 4.0 documents to the older format used in ClarisWorks 2.0, 2.1 and 3.0. Additionally, the ClarisWorks 4.0 mail merge feature has been improved to eliminate empty "sliding" fields in printed mail-merged documents; fields containing multiple lines of text now print completely. ClarisWorks 4.0 for Macintosh is priced at $129. The update is now available in the Claris Macintosh Forum (GO CLR-6). The forum's Library 13, "Updater Library," includes updates for the U.S. and various international versions of the software. 3-D Graphics Coming by Christmas? Arcade-quality games with 3-D graphics and video may be available to PC users by Christmas because of a new alliance between advanced chip specialist Cirrus Logic Inc. and game producer 3DO Co. Financial terms aren't disclosed, but United Press International reports from Redwood City, California, that Cirrus Logic will license part of 3DO's M2 technology and the companies will collaborate to develop new graphics microprocessors designed to bring the arcade- game performance into desktop PCs at home. Douglas J. Bartek, president of Cirrus Logic's Visual and Systems Interface Co., told the wire service, "The combination of our technologies provides a unique synergy that will enable us to deliver unsurpassed 3-D reality to the power gamer." UPI notes this marks 3DO's first major move into the PC marketplace and a way to diversify its business into areas including software publishing and the Internet. "Additionally," the wire service says, "the 3-D graphics market is expected to be one of the fastest growing segments in the computer industry, with entertainment fueling most of the growth." As reported earlier, Cirrus Logic last week said it will cut about 450 jobs, or 13 percent of its work force, in order to reduce its expenses and sharpen its focus on new products. Computer City Beefs Up Service Superstore retailer Computer City says it's sharpening its focus on service by implementing several new programs, including a "110 percent Price Guarantee." Under the 110 Percent Price Guarantee, the Tandy subsidiary says it will match the advertised prices of other retailers on any in-stock item it carries. If the item is advertised elsewhere at a lower price within 30 days of purchase, Computer City will refund 110 percent of the difference. A new On The Spot Delivery policy provides for the delivery and set-up of any computer system purchased at Computer City for $79.99. A Solutions On The Spot program lets computer users receive 90 days of unlimited phone support for $39.95. With Upgrades On The Spot, the chain is offering complimentary installation and testing of most hardware and software upgrades. Additionally, Computer City has expanded its software training program to include more than 130 different classes. Some of the courses offered include Introduction to Windows 95, Excel, Corel Draw, Lotus, Pagemaker, PowerPoint, Quicken, Word, WordPerfect, and Using the Internet. Most of the classes are offered on three levels: fundamentals, intermediate and advanced. Computer City will open its 100th location worldwide on Wednesday in Glen Allen, Virginia. The outlet will serve the greater Richmond area. Computer City will open a location in Jeffersontown, Kentucky, on Thursday to serve the Louisville market. "As we exceed 100 locations, our focus has turned to service and execution," says John V. Roach, CEO and chairman of Tandy Corp. "Offering the services our customers demand and providing the best service in the market is key to our continued growth and success." PB Has "Virtual Salesperson" Packard Bell Electronics Inc. says it is offering retailers a new interactive demo that serves as a 'virtual salesperson.' The seven-minute computer demo installs from a CD-ROM. Packard Bell notes that the software offers video images accented by background music, crashing waves, exploding fireworks, galloping horses and rockets traveling through space. In its interactive mode, the demo helps shoppers learn about Packard Bell's computers and their features. "Packard Bell is dedicated to developing new point-of-purchase marketing techniques to assist its retailers in selling PCs," says Mal Ransom, the computer maker's vice president of marketing. "We designed our new in-store demo to be entertaining and informative, but we also want retailers to feel like they've added a virtual salesperson to their showroom. This demo gives our computers the power to help sell themselves." HP Co-Founder David Packard Dies Complications from pneumonia have claimed the life of David Packard, the beloved 83-year-old co-founder/chairman emeritus of Hewlett-Packard Co. Packard had been hospitalized since March 16. A service is planned for Friday at Stanford University, where he and long-time partner Bill Hewlett became friends in the 1930s. In a brief statement, Hewlett called his partner's death "a loss to the company and to the country that he loved so well." Packard, who retired from active management in 1978 and stepped down as chairman in 1993, remained "one of the most respected executives in American business," says Associated Press writer Catalina Ortiz, who adds, Packard ... leaves a humane and sensible way of running a business that helped Hewlett-Packard Co. grow into a electronics giant - a management style that became an industry standard." Hewlett-Packard was started in a Palo Alto, California, garage in 1939 with a borrowed $538 and a coin toss to decide the name. It now has more than 100,000 employees and sales of $31.5 billion. It first made electronic test equipment, but over the years branched into calculators, computers and printers. "But," says Ortiz, "Packard's influence reached far beyond the electronics industry. He was admired for his philanthropy and personal qualities and as much as his business acumen and values." Says AP, "When HP went public in 1957, Packard wrote down the management beliefs he and Hewlett shared -- a philosophy that scorned strict hierarchy and formality, encouraged individual creativity and fostered respect and trust of employees. It became known as the 'HP Way' and served as a model for many other companies." Packard, preceded in death by his wife in 1987, is survived by three daughters and a son. Net Helps Find Doctor for Baby The Internet is being credited by a U.S. doctor for helping him find a surgeon to operate on a desperately ill Peruvian baby. In Newark, New Jersey, Dr. D. Scott Alenick says he heard about the baby's plight from one of her relatives in his state but he could not find a local hospital with the resources or expertise to mend the hole in her heart. Her family in Peru could not afford to come to the United States for the operation. Alenick told the Reuter News Service he posted a notice in a discussion group on the Net and received several offers of help. Reuters says Dr. William Novick of the LeBonheur Medical Center's International Children's Heart Foundation in Memphis, Tennessee, performed the operation and provided the family with housing as well. Says Alenick, a pediatrician and cardiologist at Newark's Beth Israel Medical Center, "She had a life-threatening condition and needed specialized treatment. I feel she would have died if something wasn't done soon." Reuters says the baby, Andrea Horna, was released from the Memphis hospital earlier this week and the family was on its way to Newark to thank Alenick personally. Delrina WinFax Pro 7 Update STR Focus WinFax PRO 7.0 Update Resolved Problems and Enhancements March 1996 This document lists the main fixes and program enhancements in the WinFax PRO 7.0 update, dated March 5, 1996. Overall Performance Enhancements z improved speed and performance, including printing to WinFax from another program to send a fax, PIM integration, and manipulating entries in phonebooks and logs Main WinFax Program z phonebook column headings (First Name, Last Name) now configurable in Send Fax dialog z enhanced stability when printing to WinFax from certain programs (addresses reports of occasional system lockups) z improved scanner support for Mustek 200 dpi and HP DeskScan 2.3 Phonebooks and Logs z fixed problems with recipient name lookup in Send dialog (typing recipient name in "To:" field now synchronized with list of names in phonebook) z fixed problems with upgrading unoptimized phonebooks from previous WinFax versions z fixed problems with importing fax archives from WinFax PRO 3.0 z fixed problems with viewing faxes from custom message stores created in other locations (previously limited to default \DATA directory) WinFax Viewer z improved speed when opening subsequent faxes in Viewer (quicker response after the first fax) z fixed "squeezed image" problem when printing a received fax that has not yet been viewed Quick Fax Viewer z new tool for faster viewing/printing of fax and attachment files from Windows Explorer or your desktop z right click on an .FX? file and select "Quick View" from the menu PIMs z enhanced WinFax performance and integration with ACT! and other PIMs Macros z enhanced and updated macros for Microsoft Word 6.0/7.0 and Microsoft Excel 7.0 TalkWorks Telephony Option z enhanced support for US Robotics Sportster vi voice/fax modem z enhanced support for Unimodem/v z configurable "silence detection" controls sensitivity of TalkWorks in detecting when to stop recording after caller leaves a message and hangs up z improved navigation when calling in to leave or check messages (now pressing asterisk key returns you to main menu) Hayes Whole Again! STR Spotlight HAYES WINS! HAYES WINS! HAYES WINS! HAYES REORGANIZATION PLAN CONFIRMED BY COURT Atlanta, GA -- March 1996 -- With the confirmation of its Plan of Reorganization by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Hugh Robinson on 8 March, Hayes Microcomputer Products, Inc. expressed today its enormous gratification with the Court's order which permits Hayes to emerge from Chapter 11 as an independent company. "Our stated intent and primary objective from the very start of this case was to put forth a Reorganization Plan that would pay all creditors in full and that would permit Hayes to emerge from Chapter 11 as a strong independent company making superior products backed by superior service," said Dennis C. Hayes, Chairman and CEO of Hayes. Continued Hayes, "Confirmation of the Hayes Plan will allow Hayes to continue its nearly two decades of leadership in the computer communications industry. We look forward to competing in the fast changing computer communications marketplace without the specter of Chapter 11 looming in the background." The Hayes Plan of Reorganization calls for payment of all creditors' claims in full plus interest. Proceeds from a combined equity investment of $35 million by ACMA Limited and Northern Telecom Inc. (Nortel), a $70 million debt facility with The CIT Group/Credit Finance, and the sale of surplus land owned by the company will be used to cover the company's debts. In exchange for their equity investment, ACMA and Nortel will together acquire a 49% stake in Hayes. The remainder of the company's shares (51%) will be owned by Dennis Hayes and the Employee Stock Plan. In issuing his order confirming the Hayes Plan rather than the competing Plan of Reorganization proposed by the Creditors' Committee and Diamond Multimedia Systems, Inc., Judge Robinson relied on Section 1129(c) of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code relating to the preferences of creditors and equity security holders. Judge Robinson wrote in his order, "The Debtor's Plan [Hayes] is, therefore, preferred by at least $34 million of the $43 million in outstanding unsecured debt, or approximately 79% of the unsecured creditors' claims." With regard to the preferences of equity, Judge Robinson wrote, "In this case, the Debtor's Plan is preferred by over 90% of the equity security holders." Summarizing his reasons for confirming the Hayes Plan, Robinson wrote, "The Debtor has offered a plan which proposes to pay all of its creditors in full plus interest. The Debtor's minority shareholder...is being afforded fair and equitable treatment...The majority shareholder and the majority of the creditors have come before this Court and expressed their preference for the Debtor's Plan. Moreover, the public policy underlying Chapter 11 reorganization which serves to further the local economy, maintain and create jobs, and preserve the value of an ongoing business is clearly fulfilled by confirmation of the Debtor's Plan." Dennis Hayes said, "Over the past 16 months, the employees of Hayes around the world focused on our core business, fixed our operations problems, and turned the company around to the point where we have been consistently generating profits for the past year. We continue to develop and ship new and exciting products and remain committed to our customers -- past - present - and future. With all the confusion caused by the Chapter 11 filing in November 1994, component shortages and other supply problems in early 1995, an aborted merger attempt, two hostile acquisition attempts, seemingly endless due diligence requests, frivolous patent infringement claims, a dissenting minority shareholder, and numerous other challenges and obstacles, the employees of Hayes have fought through it all. Confirmation of the Hayes Plan is confirmation of their hard work and success and complete vindication for those who stood by the company during its most difficult period." In consultation with ACMA and Nortel, the CIT Group, and legal and financial advisors, Hayes expects to soon prepare a schedule for completion of the agreements required to comply with the Confirmation Order. Further details on the schedule will be forthcoming over the next two weeks. Best known as the inventor of the PC modem, Hayes is recognized around the globe as a leader in technical innovations, computer communications standards, functional and feature-rich products, and superior support and service. Founded in 1977, Hayes develops, manufactures, and markets value- based computer communications solutions for software, business, network and consumer market segments. The company maintains an extensive global network of authorized distributors, dealers, mass merchants, VARs, system integrators and original equipment manufacturers. Hayes customers include Fortune 1000 corporations, mid-size companies and corporate branch offices, small and home office businesses, on-line and telecommunications network providers, and millions of individual PC users around the globe. Contact for more information Andrew W. Dod Director of Corporate Communications Tel: 770/840-6808 Fax: 770/441-1238 E-mail: email@example.com Web: http://www.hayes.com UltraEdit 3.10b Released STR Spotlight UltraEdit 16 & 32 bit v3.10b The editor for all your editing needs. (Designed for Windows NT and Windows 95. Do not use with Windows 3.1 /Win 32s - Use UltraEdit). UltraEdit-32 is an excellent replacement for NOTEPAD and a lot more, with support for unlimited file sizes, 100,000 word spelling hecker, full HEX editing capabilities, configurable syntax highlighting for programmers, column editing. UltraEdit has all the features you will need. UltraEdit handles multiple files at once, even if they are multi-megabyte files. It is Disk based and only requires a small amount of memory, even for very large files. UltraEdit also available for Windows .3x with no additional fee. Standard Features: z - Disk based text editing z - No limit on file size, minimum RAM used even for multi-megabyte files z - Multiple files open and displayed at the same time z - Column mode editing!!!, Insert columns/ delete/ cut/ add sequential numbers z - 100,000 word spell checker z - Syntax highlighting - configurable, pre configured for C/C++ and VB z - Automatic word wrap at specified column with hard return z - Insert file into an existing document at cursor position z - Drag and Drop support from the file manager z - Insert and overstrike modes for editing z - Multi-level undo and redo z - UltraEdit-32 is Windows 3.x CUA compliant z - Find and Replace - Also allows selection of text between caret and find target when shift key is pressed z - Goto Line Number/Page Break z - Font Selection for display and printer. (Supports all fonts installed including TRUE-TYPE fonts) z - Print support with headers, footers, margins and page breaks. z - Automatic Line Indentation z - Tab Settings z - Word Wrap Support z - Hexadecimal Editor - Allows editing of any binary file - HEX Cut, copy and paste support z - HEX Insert and Delete of characters z - HEX Find, Replace and Replace All z - Bookmarks - Unlimited number of Bookmarks z - Multiple Windows of the same file z - Comprehensive macro support, including saving and loading z - Context Sensitive Help z - Automatic backup file generated with (.BAK) extension in the directory of the original file z - UltraEdit-32 retains its screen position each time it is used z - Line & column number display (line number display may be disabled) z - Pop-up menus with right mouse button. z - Text conversion to lower or upper case and capitalization. z - Unix/Mac to DOS Conversion z - DOS to Unix conversion z - Auto detect UNIX/Mac files z - Convert Word Wrap to CR/LF's allowing word wrap to be written to file with hard returns z - Convert CR/LF's to Word Wrap (removes CR/LF's from file) z - Template Support z - More ... Also: - UltraEdit accepts a command line input and so can be used to replace NOTEPAD or other editors that are called up from a file manager by clicking on a file. Registration You are limited to 45 Days of use for an unregistered version. UltraEdit-32 is a shareware program. If you find it useful and continue to use it you are obligated to register it with the author by sending $30.00 (Ohio Residents add $1.65 Sales Tax) to: Ian D. Mead 8209 Chestnut Hill Ct. West Chester, OH 45069 USA VISA/MASTERCARD Accepted For VISA/MasterCard orders, include: 1) Name of card holder 2) Address of card holder 3) Name and address of user if different from card holder 4) Expiration date of card 5) Card #. Credit card orders may be faxed or telephoned to (513) 779 8549, or sent to my E-Mail address (see below). Compuserve Registration UltraEdit-32 may also be registered online on compuserve by typing GO SWREG and following instructions for registering using ID 4017. This will entitle you to an authorization code, the latest registered version, and technical support. For CompuServe registrations, a newer version is not sent out if the latest version is available on CompuServe. E-Mail Address Internet: IDM@iglou.com CompuServe: 71613,2654 Return Policy No refunds are issued after an authorization code has been issued. Exchanges are allowed if appropriate. This program may be freely distributed provided it is unmodified, no charge is made for the software, and all of the following files are included: 1) UEDIT32I.EXE or UEDIT32.ZIP - Self extracting file Latest Version The latest version of UltraEdit/UltraEdit-32 may be found in several places: In the WINUSER Forum on CompuServe, an official distribution and support online resource for future updates. Search for ULTRAEDIT.ZIP, and UEDIT32.ZIP. The Windows Users Group Network (WUGNET), operators of the oldest and largest independent support resource forum (WINUSER) for Windows Users on CIS with nearly 1,000,000 active members is recognized in the press, user groups, developers, and Microsoft as the foremost resource for shareware publishers on CompuServe and the Internet. On the Internet on several sites, including CICA and other sites. Additionally, on the WWW on the following page: http://members.aol.com:/idmcompsrv/index.htm (This WWW page may be replaced. If you do not find it, send E-Mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and you will be provided with a new WWW page address). EDUPAGE STR Focus Keeping the users informed Edupage Contents IBM Gets Workers (And A Contract) >From AT&T Trial Opens On Internet Indecency Computing Comes To The Big Screen Sun Buys U.K. Computer Products Company Online Trading AOL Pokes Fun At Bill Gates Porn Is A Gold Mine For IDT Generation X Should Be "Generation PC" IBM Alliance With Italian Telecom Christian Computing Netscape To Get In On The Phone-By- Internet Action U.S. Considering Supercomputers From Japan Bingaman Sees Big Role For Justice Under Telecom Deregulation Cell Phones Do The Internet Net Effect Wit-Trade Resumes Stock-Trading On Web AT&T To Market Satellite TV Services Another Java Flaw Discovered Microsoft Network Gets Millionth Subscriber Big Increase In Cellular Phone Use TV Could Unify Europe Intel To Stop Making Cable Modems International University College Expands Degrees Digital Gets Into E-Commerce Microsoft Teams Up With Japan's Softbank Software Rentals Result In Lawsuit David Packard Dies Sony To Develop PC Operating System Software Sales Lag, Too AMD Takes On Intel's Pentium The Evolution Of The Web Students To Help Business On The Internet Internet Reporters Get Media Credentials Exporters Blame The Net Clinton Will Relax Restrictions On Satellites Undiplomacy On The Net Wiring Russia Electronic Signature Cabletron's SmartSwitch It's 10 A.M.; Do You Know Where Your Employees Are Surfing? IBM GETS WORKERS (AND A CONTRACT) FROM AT&T Lucent Technologies, the company being formed out the breakup of AT&T into three separate corporations, is awarding a multibillion dollar contract to IBM's Integrated Systems Solution Corporation to manage Lucent's in-house computer systems. To fulfill the contract, IBM will hire about 3,000 AT&T employees who otherwise would have lost their jobs as part of the AT&T divestiture. (New York Times 22 Mar 96 C7) TRIAL OPENS ON INTERNET INDECENCY A federal trial over free speech on the Internet started Thursday in Philadelphia, where the recently passed Communications Decency Act was challenged by the ACLU. Testimony is expected to last about six days, after which the case will eventually go to the Supreme Court under fast-track provisions written into the bill. "The question is, who brings it up? If we lose, we go, if they lose, they go," says the ACLU's Philadelphia legal director. (Investor's Business Daily 22 Mar 96 A17) COMPUTING COMES TO THE BIG SCREEN Gateway 2000 has unveiled a PC that looks like a TV -- complete with 31-inch screen, and remote keyboard and mouse that can be operated from about 15 feet away. The system can be used for business use in making presentations, or at home for playing interactive games, cruising the Net or just plain old watching TV. Prices are expected to range from $3,499 to $4,699. (Investor's Business Daily 22 Mar 96 A19) SUN BUYS U.K. COMPUTER PRODUCTS COMPANY Sun Microsystems is buying Integrated Micro Products, a United Kingdom-based supplier of computer products for the telecommunications industry. Sun will incorporate IMP's fault-tolerant technology into its own systems. Since Sun and IMP products are based on the same microprocessor technology, analysts say the two companies will fit together well. (Financial Times 22 Mar 96 p24) ONLINE TRADING Lombard International Brokerage in San Francisco and Pawws Financial Network in New Jersey are two brokerage houses that have opened Internet trading services, allowing customers to monitor their portfolios and retrieve corporate and financial information from brokerage databases or through links to other Web sites. "You're seeing the culmination of the information brokerage -- with customer service, advanced analytical tools, and news available at one place and one time on the most incredibly productive medium that ever existed, the Internet," says Lombard's CEO. By incorporating a Java applet into their Web design, Lombard's Web site refreshes its information every 30 seconds so that intra-day trading charts are automatically updated. The Pawws trading system, a tailored version of the Security APL cash- management system, is used by several other investment houses to display their wares. "Why should we spend time and money to tell people how to get a modem to work? We provide brokerage -- not technical -- services," says one user. (Information Week 11 Mar 96 p64) And discount broker Charles Schwab & Co. will begin this May to allow its customers to trade listed and over-the-counter stocks, get real-time quotes, and access account information using the Schwab site on the World Wide Web. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution 22 Mar 96 F3) AOL POKES FUN AT BILL GATES Now that America Online and Microsoft are best of friends, AOL is introducing a new area devoted to, who else? Microsoft CEO Bill Gates! But rather than extolling his virtues, "The Secret Files of Bill Gates" features purported email from Bill to his wife, trying to dissuade her from naming their first child "Bob," etc. A spokeswoman from Microsoft responds, "Maybe Microsoft Network will start offering `From the Secret Desk of Steve Case.'" (Wall Street Journal 22 Mar 96 B1) PORN IS A GOLD MINE FOR IDT Tiny IDT Corp. has found a way to differentiate itself from the run-of-the- mill Internet access provider. It pitches its service to porn aficionados, with ads like: "With IDT, I access *all* Internet services. I said *all* Internet services -- get that smirk off your face." In fact, its service and pricing are similar to everyone else's, but its subscriber base has grown six-fold to 65,000 in the past six months using this approach. "IDT is looking for a marketing niche, and given how we think the primary Internet audience is -- lonely 20-something and 30-something males - why not aim that niche at hem?" says Gary Arlen, an Internet consultant. (Wall Street Journal 22 Mar 96 B4) GENERATION X SHOULD BE "GENERATION PC" A survey by Custom Research Inc. shows 99% of people born after 1971 had used a computer before the age of 10. More than 66% of those under age 25 called themselves "intermediate," "expert" or "power" users. Of those born before 1971, only 7% had used a computer before age 10, and only 19% rated themselves "intermediate" or above. The survey was conducted at a kiosk that's part of a traveling Smithsonian exhibit. (Investor's Business Daily 21 Mar 96 A8); revised from Edupage 21 Mar 96) IBM ALLIANCE WITH ITALIAN TELECOM IBM is said to be close to final agreement with STET, Italy's state- controlled telecommunications holding company, to jointly exploit the two global networks of the two groups and offer businesses and private customers a broad range of network-based services. The two companies are supposedly working around the clock to finish the agreement, but STET's CEO said that "when lawyers are at work, it's better not to commit oneself on the timetable." (Financial Times 22 Mar 96 p24) CHRISTIAN COMPUTING Many Christians are hoping to use computer networks as a new way to spread the Gospel. Christian Computing Magazine has 90,000 subscribers in more than 50 countries, and its editor has said that the ability to create inexpensive Web sites ''is going to change the way we think of our church.'' Hewitt said. (San Jose Mercury News - Mercury Center 24 Mar 96) NETSCAPE TO GET IN ON THE PHONE-BY-INTERNET ACTION Netscape co-founder Mark Andreessen says that within six months the company will build into its Navigator program voice software (which it calls Insoft) for making low-cost long distance calls via the Internet into its Navigator program and that long-distance phone companies increasingly won't be able to justify their rates for telephone service. (Sydney Morning Herald 13 Mar 96 via Individual Inc.) U.S. CONSIDERING SUPERCOMPUTERS FROM JAPAN Until now, no federal agency using supercomputers has ever considered acquiring anything but one made in the U.S.A., but Japanese companies Fujitsu and NEC are both giving U.S.-based Cray Research serious competition in the current supercomputer procurement being conducted by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Colorado. All the companies in the competition, both U.S. and Japanese, say that political issues have so far played no role in NCAR's decision-making process. (New York Times 25 Mar 96 C1) BINGAMAN SEES BIG ROLE FOR JUSTICE UNDER TELECOM DEREGULATION Anne Bingaman, head of the Justice Department's antitrust bureau, is hiring three new lawyers for the division's Telecom Task Force, an ominous move from the perspective of the newly deregulated telecom industry. Although the new law charges the FCC with deciding when a local phone company may offer long distance service, it requires the FCC to give "substantial weight" to Justice's recommendations. Says former antitrust attorney Ken Robinson: "It signals that the Justice Department simply doesn't want to relinquish the very important role they perceive themselves as having had." (Wall Street Journal 25 Mar B1) CELL PHONES DO THE INTERNET Motorola has a new service that can check your e-mail and convert it into a voice message you can hear over the phone. The service will also be able to send and receive faxes, and by next year should be able to turn a voice message into email and send it for you. It's expected to cost about $20 a month for receiving e-mail and other messages, and 50 cents a minute to send messages. Meanwhile, Finland's Nokia has a "smart phone" whose handset flips open to reveal a small keyboard and screen that does much the same thing as Motorola's service. Nokia's model, based on GSM technology, won't be available in the U.S., where the technology has been blamed for interfering with hearing aids. (Wall Street Journal 25 Mar 96 B10) NET EFFECT A study by the Cambridge (U.K.)-based consulting group Analysys says that the Net is a disruptive technology that will force the convergence of telecommunications, information technology, publishing and broadcasting, and that it has "usurped elegantly engineered plans for expensive networks put forward by the telecoms operators to become the focus of development and innovation for advanced services." The study characterizes the Net as a miniature model of the communications industry in the next century. (Financial Times 25 Mar 96 p11) WIT-TRADE RESUMES STOCK-TRADING ON WEB The Securities and Exchange Commission is allowing The Spring Street Brewing Company to resume the trading of its stock over the Internet. The company was the first company to attempt to sell stocks through a World Wide Web page, but was forced to suspend its activities, pending an SEC review to decide whether the trading system should be registered as a broker-dealer under the 1934 Securities Exchange Act. When Spring Street Brewing's "Wit- Trade" activity recommences on the Internet, it will comply with an SEC request that it place warnings on its Web page so that investors know the stock might be difficult to sell because it can't be traded on a regular stock exchange. (New York Times 26 Mar 96) AT&T TO MARKET SATELLITE TV SERVICES AT&T is wasting no time in getting into other communications businesses. It's signed a deal with DirecTV Inc. and United States Broadcasting Co. to market their satellite television services to AT&T customers in selected markets beginning May 1, and to the rest of the country by mid-summer. Customers who sign up for the AT&T package will receive an 18-inch satellite receive dish, a set-top box and remote control, and a programming package of more than 65 channels. Existing AT&T long-distance and Universal Card customers will be eligible for special deals. (Investor's Business Daily 26 Mar 96 A9) ANOTHER JAVA FLAW DISCOVERED A team of Princeton University researchers has discovered another security flaw in Sun Microsystems' Java programming language that could allow unscrupulous crackers to "booby-trap" a Web page, and seize control of the browser software use by any PC that tapped into that page. "This is one serious bug," says a senior Sun engineer. The company is currently preparing a patch to solve the problem and hopes to distribute it to Netscape and other browser companies in about two days. (Wall Street Journal 26 Mar 96 B4) MICROSOFT NETWORK GETS MILLIONTH SUBSCRIBER MSN has one million subscribers after seven months of operation. It is now tied with Prodigy but still behind AOL and CompuServe in total number of subscribers. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution 26 Mar 96 B3) BIG INCREASE IN CELLULAR PHONE USE With the year 1995 seeing a 40% increase in the number of cellular phones, there are now about 33.8 million such devices in the U.S., according to the Cellular Telephone Industry Association. (New York Times 25 Mar 96 C5) TV COULD UNIFY EUROPE The emergence of a single media market could serve to unify Europe faster than its single currency project, and European TV moguls are already building alliances with particular leaders and parties in various countries. One aspect of the debate that is unlikely to disappear soon is the resistance to American TV shows and films that has prompted France to push for quotas, local-content rules and other Europe-wide tools being decried by critics as "sheer protectionism." (Toronto Globe & Mail 22 Mar 96 A1) INTEL TO STOP MAKING CABLE MODEMS Intel will stop making cable modems, and instead will focus on developing cable modem standards and technologies that it will then license to other companies. (Investor's Business Daily 25 Mar 96 A7) INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITY COLLEGE EXPANDS DEGREES The International University College, founded by Glenn Jones of Jones International Ltd., is expanding its program offerings to include undergraduate courses such as public speaking and ethical issues in communication, as well as a bachelor's degree in business communication. The courses will be offered over the Internet beginning in May. International University College debuted last spring, offering a master's degree in business communication. (Investor's Business Daily 25 Mar 96 A6) DIGITAL GETS INTO E-COMMERCE Digital Equipment Corp. has signed licensing agreement s with Netscape Communications and CyberCash Inc. to incorporate their electronic commerce software into Digital's high-speed Alpha servers. (Wall Street Journal 25 Mar 96 B3) MICROSOFT TEAMS UP WITH JAPAN'S SOFTBANK Microsoft and Japan's largest software wholesaler Softbank Corp. are setting up a Japanese subsidiary to provide client- server software to businesses. The new venture, SolutionsBank, will offer software solutions tailored to the specific needs of smaller business with fewer than 300 employees. Microsoft's WindowsNT Server software is expected to be a big part of the solutions. (Investor's Business Daily 25 Mar 96 A7) SOFTWARE RENTALS RESULT IN LAWSUIT Some software heavyweights are suing three Canadian businesses for renting out computer software. The Canadian Alliance against Software Theft, which includes Adobe, Delrina, Lotus, Microsoft and Symantec, say rentals make it easier for software pirates to copy programs. (Toronto Globe & Mail 22 Mar 96 B7) DAVID PACKARD DIES David Packard, who with his partner William Hewlett founded the Hewlett- Packard Co. in 1938, died March 26. He was 83. (New York Times 27 Mar 96 B12) SONY TO DEVELOP PC OPERATING SYSTEM Sony plans to develop a new operating system focused on exploiting audio, video and networking capabilities. A Sony executive says that "as the PC merges with traditional audiovisual products, the office-oriented operating system is not necessarily the best one." Apparently the new system will be based on Sony's Apertos operating system, which requires only a small amount of memory and is able to add "object" modules over a network, when needed for a specific purpose (e.g., to receive the broadcast of a concert). (New York Times 28 Mar 96 C6) SOFTWARE SALES LAG, TOO In the wake of slowing growth in computer sales, PC software sales rose just 12% last year, according to the Software Publishers Association, driven in large part by sales of Windows-compatible programs. The fastest growing segments, in terms of revenue, were entertainment, up 42%, utilities, up 39%, personal information managers, up 42%, and languages and tools, up 41%. (Investor's Business Daily 27 Mar 96 A6) AMD TAKES ON INTEL'S PENTIUM Advanced Micro Devices has begun shipping long-awaited microprocessors that are comparable in speed to Intel's 75 MHz and 90 MHz Pentium chips. Up until now, AMD was relying on sales of its slower chips, compatible with Intel's 80486 series. "This puts AMD back in the right ballpark," says one analyst, "but they're playing on the fringes. I don't think Intel will even blink." Intel is concentrating on its next generation Pentium Pro chips. In the meantime, Cyrix Corp. has produced Pentium-class chips that, according to some tests, are even a little faster than Intel's. (Wall Street Journal 27 Mar 96 B12) THE EVOLUTION OF THE WEB Peter Adams, director of interactive and creative services at Poppe Tyson Advertising proposes the following evolutionary description of the World Wide Web: "In the beginning, there was Genesis. Then came Renaissance, followed by the Age of Enlightenment and the State of Nirvana." Genesis was back a couple of years ago, when most Web sites consisted of little more than scanned in annual reports and some navigational buttons. The Renaissance occurred when marketers wrested control from the systems staff and started putting up fancy graphics. "The wallpaper was beautiful, but the sites were still static," says Adams. Now we're in the Age of Enlightenment, where meaningful activity is beginning to take place and return on investment starts. Adams predicts Nirvana will be achieved when the Web sites becomes a routine extension of business. (Investor's Business Daily 27 Mar 96 A6) STUDENTS TO HELP BUSINESS ON THE INTERNET Prime Minister Chretien announced about 2,000 students will be hired over the next three years to help 50,000 small businesses plug into the Internet. Under the $15-million Student Connection jobs program, third-and fourth-year university students will gain work experience, new skills, business contacts and wages to finance their educations, while training business people so they can be more competitive in international markets. (Ottawa Citizen 28 Mar 96 D8) INTERNET REPORTERS GET MEDIA CREDENTIALS The journalists' committee that decides which journalists can get press credentials that allow access to Congressional sessions and hearings has ruled that Internet reporters are eligible to receive credentials if they are engaged in the daily publication of general-interest news for dissemination to a wide segment of the general public and meet certain other conditions. (New York Times 28 Mar 96 C4) EXPORTERS BLAME THE NET German exporters, battling a strong currency and high labor costs, have found another area to blame for their declining share of international markets -- the Internet. Germany's wholesale and foreign trade association said companies were losing lucrative niche markets because the Net makes it easier to compare prices, making competition tougher. (Toronto Financial Post 27 Mar 96 p10) CLINTON WILL RELAX RESTRICTIONS ON SATELLITES The Clinton Administration plans to end the Pentagon's restrictions on civilian uses of the government's satellite navigation system, which can pinpoint the locations of users anywhere in the world. The restrictions historically were based on national security concerns, but the White House feels they no longer are necessary. (Wall Street Journal 28 Mar 96 A3) UNDIPLOMACY ON THE NET Spanish Ambassador Jose Luis Pardos has posted on the Internet a series of angry, sarcastic statements and propaganda attacking former Fisheries Minister Brian Tobin's handling of the Canada-Spain turbot war. The history of the turbot issue was reviewed and the page included some decidedly undiplomatic criticisms of several Canadian officials. (Montreal Gazette 27 Mar 96 A13) Canada has registered an official complaint with Spain's foreign ministry in Madrid over material posted on the Internet by its ambassador to Canada. (Ottawa Citizen 28 Mar 96 A3) WIRING RUSSIA Philanthropist and financier George Soros has pledged $100 million over five years to link an estimated 30 regional universities in Russia to the Internet. The program will establish "Internet centers" at each of the universities, and will provide equipment, software and training at each site. The Russian government will fund the satellite or fiber optic hookups. "Universities in Russia traditionally have been a center of intellectual life in each region," says Soros, noting that scholars in the provinces are eager to participate in information exchanges with their colleagues throughout Russia and the world. (Chronicle of Higher Education 29 Mar 95 A23) ELECTRONIC SIGNATURE PenOp's $150 digital signature kit uses a stylus and a digitizer to scan in a signature, and software then affixes it to a document. The system currently is being tested by the Internal Revenue Service, and PenOp's CEO thinks it someday will satisfy legal requirements for a signature on a wide variety of documents. (USA Today 27 Mar 96 B6) CABLETRON'S SMARTSWITCH Cabletron's SmartSwitch uses ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit) technology to hardwire, in one piece of silicon, many of the routing tasks previously done by software. The result is a super switch that can link four times as many computers as many conventional switches, and boosts data transmission speed by a factor of five. "This is a mechanical problem and I'm a machinery guy," says Cabletron's director of engineering. "So I built a machine." (Business Week 25 Mar 96 p76) IT'S 10 A.M.; DO YOU KNOW WHERE YOUR EMPLOYEES ARE SURFING? The use of the Internet by employees for non-employment-related Web surfing is now being monitored in some offices by a program called SmartAlex, which was designed to help parents prevent their children from accessing pornographic material by analyzing computer graphics for their flesh tone content. (Investor's Business Daily 28 Mar 96 A8) Edupage is written by John Gehl (email@example.com) & Suzanne Douglas (firstname.lastname@example.org). Voice: 404-371-1853, Fax: 404-371-8057. Technical support is provided by the Office of Information Technology, University of North Carolina. EDUPAGE is what you've just finished reading. To subscribe to Edupage: send a message to: email@example.com and in the body of the message type: subscribe edupage Marvin Minsky (assuming that your name is Marvin Minsky; if it's not, substitute your own name). ... To cancel, send a message to: firstname.lastname@example.org and in the body of the message type: unsubscribe edupage... Subscription problems: email@example.com. EDUCOM REVIEW is our bimonthly print magazine on learning, communications, and information technology. Subscriptions are $18 a year in the U.S.; send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. When you do, we'll ring a little bell, because we'll be so happy! Choice of bell is yours: a small dome with a button, like the one on the counter at the dry cleaners with the sign "Ring bell for service"; or a small hand bell; or a cathedral bell; or a door bell; or a chime; or a glockenspiel. Your choice. But ring it! EDUCOM UPDATE is our twice-a-month electronic summary of organizational news and events. To subscribe to the Update: send a message to: email@example.com and in the body of the message type: subscribe update John McCarthy (assuming that your name is John McCarthy; if it's not, substitute your own name). INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY CONFERENCE The CAUSE organization's annual conference on information technology in higher education is scheduled for the end of this month in New Orleans. The conference will bring together administrators, academicians and other managers of information resources. For full conference information check out <http://cause-www.colorado.edu > or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. ARCHIVES & TRANSLATIONS. For archive copies of Edupage or Update, ftp or gopher to educom.edu or see URL: < http://www.educom.edu/>. For the French edition of Edupage, send mail to email@example.com with the subject "subscribe"; or see < http://www.ijs.com >. For the Hebrew edition, send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org containing : SUBSCRIBE Leketnet-Word6 <name> or see < http://www.kinetica.co.il/ newsletters/leketnet/ >. For the Hungarian edition, send mail to: send mail to email@example.com. An Italian edition is available on Agora' Telematica; connection and/or free subscription via BT-Tymnet and Sprint (login: <agora) or via telnet <agora.stm.it; mail: <firstname.lastname@example.org for info. For the Portuguese edition, contact email@example.com with the message SUB EDUPAGE-P Seu Primeiro Nome Seu Sobrenome. For the Spanish edition, send mail edunews@nc- rj.rnp.br with the message SUB EDUPAGE-E Su Primer Nombre, Su Apellido. Educom -- Transforming Education Through Information Technology MSI Ships NEW Program Suite STR InfoFile MUSTANG SOFTWARE SHIPS WILDCAT! 5 FOR WINDOWS 95 AND NT Versatile 32-bit Interactive Web Server "Levels The Playing Field" For Business And Consumers; Intranet, Internet Solution Available In Retail Channel. Bakersfield, California, March 25, 1996: Mustang Software, Inc. (Nasdaq: MSTG) today announced it has shipped its Wildcat! 5 BBS/Web Server for Windows 95/NT to retail outlets nationwide. Wildcat! 5 offers a unique combination of Web server functionality with the interactive bulletin board messaging features found on online services such as America Onliner and Prodigyr. Manufacturer's suggested retail prices for the 2, 16, and 32 user versions are: $149, $349, and $699 respectively. Add-ons, such as the Internet Connectivity Pack (ICP), 8- and 32-line upgrade packs, wcExchange (for placing BBS messages in Microsoft Exchange), wcCODE (for developing custom applications), wcReports (for compiling and exporting data and usage statistics), and the Custom Connector (a store-front customization package), will be sold directly, through dealers and through system integrators at prices ranging from $149-$799. "Wildcat! 5 is designed to fully utilize the 32-bit operating system in Windows NT and Windows 95. With the breadth of its features and functionality, including customization, interactivity and multimedia capabililities, we expect Wildcat! 5 to capture a healthy share of the online communications market," said Jim Harrer, Mustang President and CEO. "We've also leveled the playing field for individuals, groups, small office/home office users and corporations competing to create Internet and Intranet solutions because Wildcat! 5 reduces the need for major investments in software, hardware and support. Now users need only a Windows 95-based 486-66 computer and a phone line, LAN, or Internet connection to get a presence up and running." Harrer noted that users are currently buying the ICP add-on (MSRP $249) at an impressive 50 percent rate: the ICP turns the Wildcat! 5 platform into a Web server, supporting inbound and outbound telnet , FTP and UUCP, offering seamless Internet compatibility. "Now users have an alternative to other Windows NT Web servers, such as Microsoft's Internet Information Server (IIS)", continued Harrer. "Wildcat! offers a true interactive, multimedia environment for a myriad of uses - from Web or FTP site, to building an online community." Additionally, Wildcat! 5 includes the freely-distributable Wildcat! Navigator graphical Windows front end, which enables easy, point and click access to powerful message features, chat conference areas, file libraries, instant paging and outbound browsing to Web sites. The Wildcat! Navigator offers the navigational ease of the most popular Web browsers; the optional Custom Connector will allow companies and groups to add their logo directly to the browser, creating a powerful branded tool for their site. Mustang Software will be demonstrating its next-generation Wildcat! 5 technology at FOSE, in Washington DC, April 2-4, and Internet World, in San Jose, April 29 - May 3. Wildcat! Navigator can be downloaded for free from http://www.mustang.com, by telnetting to bbs.mustang.com, or via direct dial modem at 805/873-2400. Wildcat! 5 is distributed by Ingram Micro, Merisel and DistribuPro. Resellers include CompUSA, Egghead, Computer City, Software Etc., Babbages, Best Buy, Micro Center, Media Play, Fry's Electronics and Office Max. The Wildcat! product line is a leader with an active install base of more than 50,000 sites. Mustang Software can be reached by calling 805/873-2500, or 800/999-9619; or via BBS 805/873-2400; and Web http://www.mustang.com. Mustang designs, develops, markets and supports online communications software including the Wildcat!, QmodemPro, and Off-Line Xpress product lines. Founded in September 1986, Mustang is a publicly traded company (Nasdaq: MSTG) and its headquarters are located at 6200 Lake Ming Road, Bakersfield, California, 93306. Kids Computing Corner Frank Sereno, Editor The Kids' Computing Corner Computer news and software reviews from a parent's point of view Brighter ChildT Interactive Announces Licensing of Marvel Super Heroes Can Spider-Man teach children math and geography? Brighter ChildT intends to answer this question with a new series of CD-ROM learning titles featuring licensed characters from Marvel Comics. Three math and three geography titles will be issued over the next three years. The first title, Marvel Math, will debut at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in May. It is designed for children ages eight to twelve and will feature Spider-Man, She-Hulk, Wolverine and Iron Man battling against Hobgoblin, Spragg and the Living Hill. Simultaneously children will learn and sharpen essential math skills. Richard Pam, CEO of Brighter ChildT stated, "We are very excited about the opportunity to work with Marvel on this project. Marvel's Super Heroes are among the most popular and recognizable characters with children throughout the world. Our award-winning MuppetT software titles taught us that if you combine well-known characters and exciting games with an educational message, children have fun learning and therefore want to learn more." Brighter ChildT recently opened its own World Wide Web site at http://www.brighterchild.com. The site features a software sampler and contains information about the company's products. # # # Activision Backs Zork Nemesis with Online Advertising Campaign Activision once again is using the Internet as a method of promotion for its software. The latest offering to receive this treatment is Zork Nemesis. Between now and May 10, the game will be promoted on Web site billboards at Yahoo, Nuke, Happy Puppy and more. The campaign will also include extensive print and radio promotion and a national sweepstakes. The sweepstakes offers a vacation package for two to Wales including four nights and five days of first class accommodations, round-trip airfare, and select meals and entertainment. Also included is a one night stay at the historic Ruthin Castle. The contest can be entered via entry cards included in many publications, in-store counter cards and at Activision's World Wide Web site at http://www.activision.com. The winner will be selected by random drawing during the second week of July. Additionally, five first-prize winners will receive hand-drawn Zork Nemesis animation cells from the game's art director, Mauro Borelli (Batman Forever, Dracula and The Godfather III). One hundred second prize winners will receive win baseball hats and another one hundred will receive t-shirts emblazoned with the Zork Nemesis logo. As an added feature to this promotion, Activision is making the original Zork I text adventure available for download from its web site. This is the game that led to the Zork series and other spin-offs. It will also be available on CompuServe and America Online. Zork Nemesis will be available in April. Players will venture into the Forbidden Lands of the Great Underground Empire. In this dark and foreboding land, they must free the souls of the four great alchemists from Nemesis' curse. By discovering an ancient secret of alchemy, they can free the imprisoned souls and defeat Nemesis to win the game. # # # The Vampire Diaries CD-ROM from Her Interactive Her Interactive is a software company devoted to developing software for young women. This division of American Laser Games, Inc., was established in November 1994 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Their latest software creation is The Vampire Diaries, based on the romantic thriller novels for young adults. It will be available this fall for Windows 95 with a price of $59.95. The game is set in a virtual 3-D world of Fells Church, Virginia. Players undertake the role of Elena, a teenager who must defeat an evil force in her town even as she falls in love with a vampire. The game features 360 degree freedom of movement and 3-D rendered backgrounds. An internal game-time clock will cause scenes to change for day to night. Some actions necessary to complete the game can only be accomplished at certain times of day. An option for closed-captioning of dialogue is available to the player also. Patricia Flanigan, Executive Director of Her Interactive, stated, "Teen girls told us they like spooky, scary stories, rich in character but without the gore found in many games. We anticipate Vampire Diaries will appeal to girls, women and men, really to anyone who enjoys a good suspenseful story." You can learn more about The Vampire Diaries and many interesting subjects at Her Online, Her Interactive's web site at http://www.her-online.com. The site also contains information about the company's debut program, McKenzie & Co., a comedy adventure about high school. The game consists of five CD- ROM's and is available for Windows and Macintosh computers # # # N-TK Releases Four New Memorex Software Titles N-TK (Entertainment Technology) is shipping four new CD-ROM compilation packages for IBM compatible computers. The company has a wide assortment of entertainment and educational titles aimed at children and adults. The first package is Ace Eagles & Birdies. This addition to the Memorex Gold Edition line is designed for golf lovers. It includes Golf Digest's Best Places to Playr, Picture Perfect Golf and ESPNr Golf: Lower Your Score with Tom Kite-Shotmaking. Gold Edition titles are available for $29.99. Memorex's Classic Line packages incorporate three titles on a single CD-ROM disc for $14.95. Dark Passages Volume I includes Dark Seed, The Psychotron and Wraith of the DemonT. Dark Passages Volume II features Crusaders of the Dark Savant, Demoniak and The C.H.O.A.S. Continuum. N-TK's final new offering is Starhawks, Volume II. This package includes Buried in Time, Load Star and Cadillac and Dinosaurs. Memorex software is available through most computer retailers and also in many retail stores. # # # Activision Teams Up with EarthLink to Offer Internet Gaming For the first time, a CD-ROM game has been enhanced with Internet access and content. Through a special agreement, Activision and EarthLink Network, Inc., are offering fifteen days of unlimited Internet access to purchasers of Spycraft: The Great Game. Players will have access to a special Spycraft Website where they can trade secrets, gather intelligence and surf government Web sites. Activision Chairman and CEO, Bobby Kotick stated, "There is little doubt that the Internet will play a key role in the evolution of interactive entertainment. At Activision, we are continually looking for ways to push the gaming experience forward." Internet access software will be included directly on the game disc. Players will be able to load and go using EarthLink's TotalAccess package that includes Netscape Navigator and Eudora e-mail. # # # Operation Neptune Hybrid CD for Windows and Mac Ages 9-14 Estimated retail price: $45.00 The Learning Company 6493 Kaiser Drive Fremont, California 94555 (800) 852-2255 Program Requirements IBM Macintosh OS: Windows 3.1, Windows 95 OS: System 7.0.1 CPU: 386DX/33 CPU: 68030 HD Space: 1 MB HD Space: N/A Memory: 4 MB Memory: 4 MB Graphics: 640 by 480 with 256 colors Graphics: 256 colors, 13" monitor CD-ROM: Double-speed recommended CD-ROM: Double-speed recommended Audio: 8-bit Windows compatible sound card Other: mouse Other: mouse review by Angelo Marasco Operation Neptune is another in a series of educational programs which The Learning Company has upgraded and enhanced for CD-ROM. It is a math education program that specializes in something I like to call "stealth learning." Children learn math while having fun yet never realize that they're learning something! In Operation Neptune, members of a top-secret space mission send the results of their explorations to earth in the Galaxy unmanned space capsule. On its way back to earth, Galaxy somehow goes off course and crashes into the sea. As the player, it is your job to use the Neptune mini-sub to find the pieces of the broken-up Galaxy. Along the way you are going to get a math drilling out of this world. The opening scenes are nothing short of amazing. A control room with a wall sized tracking screen shows the path of the Galaxy as it crashes while you listen to the radio traffic describing what is going on. In the next scene you see a Navy ship drop the Neptune into the ocean. Then you have the option of continuing on into the game or getting an introduction. Watch the intro. The sounds and the background music really make you feel like you are getting involved in something serious. Operation Neptune has a sort of video game quality to it. When I first started the program, I thought it was going to be difficult to find any educational value to it. My first impression was very wrong. You maneuver Neptune through very colorful scenes trying to find and pick up pieces of the cargo which Galaxy lost when it crashed. While searching and recovering you encounter various kinds of underwater life that threaten your sub and sap your strength if they touch you. By out-maneuvering the fish and plants that threaten you and using torpedoes that surround threatening fish with a sight-obscuring black cloud you continue on through the course until you reach the supply station. Along the way you are presented with a variety of math problems. You determine the level of challenge of these problems. The graphics in this program are stunning. The scenes are bright and colorful. The images are sharp. Everything moves without delay. Operation Neptune definitely earned the perfect rating I gave it for graphics. I also gave Operation Neptune a perfect score for sounds. As I mentioned earlier, the sounds and background music in the opening are great. The quality of the sound effects did not fall off in the game itself as happens with some programs that are updated for CD-ROM. The interface is good, although I would have really appreciated joystick or mouse control in the game. It's a little awkward trying to play a game with keyboard cursor controls, especially a game where you are maneuvering something through some very tight areas. The Neptune mini-sub gets into some really close quarters at times and it would really be nice to have better control. On top of that, there were times when Neptune would get caught by something in its way. It was a little too much of a challenge to free the submarine because I could not tell what it was hanging up on. I lowered the interface rating slightly because of these two flaws. One other problem that lowered the interface rating was the game's calculator. It is fine for all the regular problems. However, using it to figure out fraction problems was a true pain-in-the-neck. It was extremely frustrating and exasperating to use for these problems. The Learning Company needs to find a better way to do fraction operations than the way they give in the instructions. Play value of this program is excellent. It is extremely challenging. Because you never spend a lot of time in any one scene, the visuals are constantly changing. This keeps you from getting bored with the program. The challenge keeps the interest level high. At times it's hard to believe that this is an educational program. My 13-year old daughter, who happens to hate math, spent a couple of weeks working her way through this program. I had a hard time getting her away from the computer. That is real play value! Educational value of Operation Neptune is also very high. I was very pleased with the variety of math problems that the program presents. The program presents problems in different formats. The format and the type of problem you are presented with apply to different aspects of the mission. For instance, you may be asked to calculate a change in ballast, or to convert the measurement of a window crack from centimeters to millimeters or to calculate the total square miles you have explored. I looked forward to being presented with new math challenges and problems because I never knew what kind of problem to expect. Bang for the buck rating is also high. The retail price for Operation Neptune is around $45.00 that still seems high to me for educational software. However, the quality of the graphics and sounds and the high educational value and play value make the price a little easier to swallow. I was very pleased with the overall quality of Operation Neptune. I am happy to recommend that it be added to your educational software collection. Ratings Graphics . . . . . . . . . 10.0 Sound . . . . . . . . . . . 10.0 Interface . . . . . . . . . 8.5 Play Value . . . . . . . . 9.5 Educational Value . . . 10.0 Bang for the Buck . . . 9.0 Average . . . . . . . . . . 9.5 # # # Beyond the Nine Dragons Dual-format CD-ROM for Windows and Macintosh ages 10 and up $10 published by Essex Interactive developed by The Black Box Program Requirements IBM Macintosh OS: Windows 3.1 OS: System 7.1 CPU: 486/25 CPU: Macintosh IIvi HD Space: 2 MB HD Space: 4 MB Memory: 8 MB Memory: 5 MB Graphics: 640 by 480 with 256 colors Graphics: 256 colors, 13" monitor CD-ROM: Double-speed recommended CD-ROM: Double-speed recommended Audio: 8-bit Windows compatible sound card Other: printer, mouse Other: printer reviewed by Frank Sereno Beyond the Nine Dragons is a fascinating trip along the Mekong River in southeast Asia. Follow the world's twelfth longest river from its headwaters in Tibet through Burma, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos to Vietnam where the river empties into the South China Sea. This entertaining CD-ROM provides ample opportunity to learn about the interesting peoples and cultures of distant lands halfway around the globe. The program is a documentary or travelogue of southeast Asia's Mekong River basin. Beyond the Nine Dragons features an original score complemented by the music of these cultures, intriguing photography, informative and entertaining text, a professional narration and excellent video footage. It is easy to see the amount of caring and dedication that went into this project. The writers and photographers have an affinity for the peoples and lands of this region. Beyond the Nine Dragons is divided into four main sections named for the four major sections of the Mekong. The section entitled Turbulent River is devoted to the Mekong in China and Burma. In Thailand and Laos, the river is known as Mother of Waters. The Mekong becomes the Great Water in Cambodia. The Vietnamese call the river the Nine Dragons. Each section has four subheadings. Lifestyles is an overview of each nation's culture shown in a narrated slideshow. Religion is second slideshow devoted to the spiritual culture of these nations. The Reference section features the text and photography from the book, The Mekong: A River and Its People by photographer Allen W. Hopkins with text by John Hoskin. The Explorer section contains a lengthy QuickTime video profile of that nation and has an extensive text reference that details the geography, people, history and more. Also included is essential travel information such as visa requirements, available transport, accommodations, points of interest and even security and safety tips. The program features a very simple user interface. The "point and click" design features online help. Arrow buttons make navigation between sections of the program easy. You can print out the text in the Reference and Explorer sections. The information in the Explorer section is extremely valuable should you ever travel to these lands. The only flaw I found is in the Reference section. The text is presented in a virtual book format. You can turn "pages" forward in the book to read the next page, but you cannot go back in the book. Beyond the Nine Dragons is a wonderful program for all who have an interest in exotic lands. The beauty of the land and people of the Mekong basin is intriguing and delightful. This artfully crafted program should delight almost everyone. I highly recommend this amazingly affordable software journey. # # # Cascoly Picture Puzzles Windows CD-ROM for ages 5 and up retail price $10 Essex Interactive Media Program Requirements OS: Windows 3.1 CPU: 386SX HD Space: 0 MB Memory: 4 MB Graphics: 640 x 480, 256 colors CD-ROM: single-speed Audio: 8-bit sound card recommended Other: mouse Cascoly Picture Puzzles is an interesting and entertaining diversion. For the low price of $10, you can spend hours sharpening your skills of perception by reconstructing puzzles ranging from two to two thousand pieces. The program features a simple mouse interface that includes solution hints and online help. A Hall of Fame list is maintained to encourage continued participation. The program comes on CD-ROM, but it could have easily be zipped up onto floppies. It uses less than 5 MB of storage. It includes a number of WAV files and ten image files. The images are in a special format, WZL, that is specific to this program. The one flaw in this version of the product is that you cannot convert your own images for use in puzzles. If you browse through a lot of shareware programs, you might recognize this program as Winzle! The new shareware version of this program is available for $30. The programmers have somewhat improved the interface over the one included in this CD-ROM. The shareware version includes only two images but registration earns you additional images and a program for converting any BMP file into the special format WZL file. The conversion utility will increase your family's enjoyment of the program because you will be able to do puzzles with your favorite images. Your children can create pictures and then make their own puzzles. You could make puzzles from family portraits. The possibilities are nearly endless. Unfortunately, the CD-ROM contains no information about the conversion utility. It does have an order sheet for purchasing additional images directly from Cascoly Software. These original photographs are quite impressive. Cascoly Picture Puzzles is an entertaining package at $10. If you enjoy this version, consider purchasing the shareware version to get the conversion utility to personalize your puzzle experiences. Portable Computers Section Marty Mankins, Editor Quarterdeck and Datastorm STR Infofile QUARTERDECK ACQUIRES DATASTORM TECHNOLOGIES DEVELOPER OF LEADING COMMUNICATIONS PACKAGE PROCOMM PLUS Combination of Technologies from Quarterdeck, DATASTORM And The Intended Acquisition of Future Labs, Inc. Will Offer a Powerful Platform for Collaboration and Communications on the Internet and Intranet MARINA DEL REY, Calif., March 28, 1996 -- Quarterdeck Corp. today announced it has acquired DATASTORM TECHNOLOGIES Inc. in a stock-for-stock merger to be treated as a "pooling of interest" for accounting purposes. Quarterdeck will issue approximately 5.2 million shares in connection with the merger. The acquisition of DATASTORM is a significant step in Quarterdeck's collaborative computing and communications strategy. DATASTORM is the developer and publisher of Procomm Plus, the industry's leading data communications package. It recently shipped Procomm Plus 3.0 which runs on Windows 95 and 3.1, which includes an integrated FAX package, a Winsock- compliant TCP/IP stack, and a complete set of graphical applications for accessing the Internet, including a Web browser, telnet, FTP, and a news and mail reader. Privately-held DATASTORM will remain in its Columbia, Missouri headquarters. The company's revenues for calendar 1995 were about $39 million with a level of profit before taxes of approximately 20%. The acquisition of DATASTORM is expected to be accretive to Quarterdeck's earnings per share. In addition to the DATASTORM acquisition, Quarterdeck announced it signed a memorandum of understanding to acquire Future Labs Inc. Future Labs develops TALKShow, a whiteboarding and collaboration technology that allows two or more people to work together in the same application from remote locations. "The combination of DATASTORM's communication technology with our advanced Internet solutions will give us a unique position in the collaborative computing environment," said Gaston Bastiaens, President and CEO of Quarterdeck. "Adding Future Labs technology on top of this will push Quarterdeck to the forefront of collaborative computing and communications technologies." "Partnering with Quarterdeck will allow us to take our technologies to the next level quickly," said Tom Smith, Executive Vice President and co-founder of DATASTORM. "Plus, Quarterdeck's world-wide marketing and distribution muscle is among the most extensive in the industry, and this will enable us to make Procomm Plus available to a much larger potential audience, particularly in Europe and the Far East." "Quarterdeck and DATASTORM are two highly recognized and respected names in the software industry," said Bruce Barkelew, President and co-founder of DATASTORM. "By combining the brand name equity and technology of both companies, we will have an industry-leading marketing, technology, and mindshare combination now and into the future." Added Stephen Monaco, Vice President and co-owner of DATASTORM, "Quarterdeck's powerful retail marketing organization will provide an additional sales channel for Procomm into the SOHO and international markets. This will help preserve and even expand our lead as the top broad communications software developer in the industry." Tom Smith has been appointed Senior Vice President of the Communications business unit of Quarterdeck Corp., of which DATASTORM is an integral part. Mr. Monaco and Mr. Barkelew will stay on as consultants to Quarterdeck. About DATASTORM World headquarters are located in Columbia, Missouri, with a European office in Cambridge, England. DATASTORM TECHNOLOGIES Inc. and DATASTORM TECHNOLOGIES, Ltd. are privately-held corporations employing around 350 people internationally. DATASTORM markets their PROCOMM brand of communications software products world-wide. PROCOMM PLUS and PROCOMM PLUS for Windows consistently rank in the top ten best-selling software products. About Quarterdeck Quarterdeck Corporation is a pioneer in the development of software products in four strategic business areas: Utilities, Internet Solutions, Internet Services, and Communications. The company has led the industry in bringing utilities solutions to the Windows and DOS environments with its award- winning QEMM memory management software. The company also offers an entire line of powerful, next-generation Internet tools for corporate, small business and individual users, including the award-winning WebCompass, and the company's first product in the Communications market, WebTalk. Quarterdeck Corporation's headquarters are located at 3160 Mindanao Way, Marina del Rey, CA 90292. The Dubliin, Ireland office serves as its European headquarters, with offices in England, France, Germany, and Australia. Further product availability and pricing information can be obtained by calling (310) 309-3700, by accessing Quarterdeck's Internet Web site at http://www.quarterdeck.com/, or by sending an e-mail request to firstname.lastname@example.org. Quarterdeck and QEMM are registered trademarks and WebTalk and WebCompass are trademarks of Quarterdeck Corporation. All other brand and product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies. Media Contacts: Investor Contact: Ellen Spooren Ina McGuinness or Cecilia Wilkinson Quarterdeck Corporation Pondel Parsons & Wilkinson 310.309.4261 310.207.9300 email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org Kevin Bourke Brodeur & Partners 617.622.2800 email@example.com Atari Interactive - software/Jaguar/Computer Section Dana Jacobson, Editor >From the Atari Editor's Desk "Saying it like it is!" I'm actually at a loss for words this week, for a change. It's been a really weird week at work and not much time to sit and relax to gather one's thoughts to editorialize. One thing I will comment on is the recent announcement (see text later in this section) regarding a special limited time offer from Atari. It seems that Atari is reportedly re-locating their warehouse and Atari's Don Thomas discovered a cache of various hardware, etc. He got the okay to offer a special sale offer on most of it; the offering looks terrific. Be sure to check it out as soon as possible as this stuff can't possibly last long! I wonder how my credit card will hold out after this offer! <g> There won't be a "People Are Talking" column this week as Joe Mirando is recuperating from a "Montezuma" bug he caught from his nieces and nephews doggone kids just love to give relatives all of their germs! Look for its return (the column, not the germs!) next week. Until next time... >From CompuServe's Atari 8 bit area (GO ATARIGAMING) from member David Schmudde who discusses a possible online Classic Atari magazine: First off, this might hit a big snag if I can't find anybody to do the 8-bit hardware section. Now, I am not aware what exactly "Atari Classics" focuses on, because I have never read it. Where can I pick it up? How many times a year does it print? I'm guessing its online, am I correct? Second "Classic Atari OnLine" is this: It is a MONTHLY magazine that focuses on all Atari 8-bit, computers and game systems. It doesn't focus on collection like I believe "The 2600 Connection" does. Although it probably will hit on that section sooner or later. What this magazine is here for is to fill an information gap that I feel I have found in the Atari community. I believe that there is a large Atari user base of people like me. People that bought Atari computers/Game systems wanting the classic programs, and having an "adventure" (over dramatic word, but I could think of nothing better) finding the right one. But this "adventure" is severely hindered by the fact that there is no good way to start. I have hunted FidoNets, CompuServe forums, Web pages etc... trying to find the right info, and I would have liked it if there was a magazine, or a single easy source, to tell me which 8-bit programs are the best, instead of constant asking around. Same with hardware. This magazine is also covering a wide amount of userbase in the fact that I'm trying toinstill "Classic Atari OnLine" with novice, intermediate and expert information. So no matter what skill level the person is on, they will find use from this magazine. This magazine contains: z 2600/7800 Game reviews/Tips/Tricks z 8 Bit computer program/game reviews z 8 bit hardware tips/tricks/ reviews (I STILL NEED SOMEONE TO DO THIS!) z Current Atari News (no matter how long ago you joined Atari, I think everyone should keep up with current Atari) z Atari History z A few other pending sections Wherever possible, when I review a program I will tell the reader where they can get this program. I will try not to review anything too rare (I have some rare stuff though) and nothing that everybody already has. Now where will it be available? It will be available on: CompuServe/AOL (pending)/several WWW sites/GEnie (pending)/several BBS's outside of my calling code. Expect it to be advertised on: FidoNets, WWW sites, CompuServe, Youngstown FreeNet, Victoria FreeNet, Cleveland FreeNet, Heartland FreeNet, several IRC channels, several BBSes. It will possibly be advertised on: "The Jaguar Journal" (I need to contact Jeffrey Norwood), "The 2600 Connection". I already have a deal with the publisher of "The 2600 Connection" for the ability to reprint some of its articles, and hopefully this can be extended to fit my (and his) advertising needs. If it goes well, then I will keep on-line publishing and also extend to publishing my own fanzine. Does all this warrant "another" classic Atari magazine? Or should I just throw in the towel and ask to write for "Atari Classics"? Jaguar Section Braindead 13 Released! Sony PSX Hits Million Mark! Atari Limited time Special Offer! And more... >From the Editor's Controller - Playin' it like it is! I've been trying to get in some time to test out some of the more recent Jaguar releases to start the review process on a couple of games, but my wife has been tying up the Jaguar and playing them herself. I think that I might get an opportunity about 3 a.m. on Saturday morning, but I may have to pry the controller out of her hands as she sleeps! We'll see. In the meantime, some of reviewers have some of the latest games in their possession also, and their reviews should appear shortly. We still also have a few long awaited reviews pending. It's a quick wrap this week due to time constraints and a general blas feeling waiting for Spring to spring! Until next time... Industry News STR Game Console NewsFile - The Latest Gaming News! Sony hits 1 million in PlayStation sales FOSTER CITY, Calif., March 25 (UPI) -- Sony Computer Entertainment America reported Monday that 1 million units of its PlayStation game console have been sold since its launch Sept. 9. The advanced video game machine, powered by a 32-bit chip, retails for about $300. Major companies in the lucrative $5 billion video game business have been scrambling in recent weeks to capture the public's attention with announcements about their leading-edge machines, powered by 32-bit and 64-bit chips. 3DO, Atari and Sega Enterprises Ltd. all began shipping advanced players prior to Sony's debut of the PlayStation but the relatively low price and the marketing muscle of Sony has made it the leader in the business with 76 percent of the "next-generation" unit sales since September. "A little over a year ago, SCEA had one mission: to become the leader in next-generation gaming and we have made that a reality," said Jim Whims, executive vice president of Sony Computer Entertainment America. Analysts have said Sony is unlikely to be making much profit from sales of the consoles with the earnings coming from the lucrative software that runs on the PlayStation. Sony reported software sales for the PlayStation have topped 7 million. It said that during the September-through-December period, PlayStation software outsold its closest next- generation competitor by a 3- to-1 margin. Sony said its "NFL GameDay" has sold more than 300,000 units and "NHL Face Off" in excess of 200,000. In the next two months, "NBA ShootOut" and "MLB Pennant Race" will hit the shelves. Maxis to Acquire Game Developer Maxis Inc. says it has signed a definitive agreement to purchase of Cinematronics L.L.C., an Austin, Texas-based developer of action and arcade software. Maxis, best known for its SimCity games, says the purchase is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to be completed by the end of the month. The agreement's terms weren't disclosed, although Maxis notes that the acquisition will require it to take a one-time charge of up to $2.3 million. "Acquiring Cinematronics is an integral part of our strategy to expand into the action and family entertainment markets," ays Sam Poole, president of Maxis, which is headquartered in Walnut Creek, California. "The company shares our high production standards. The expertise of their designers and programmers will enhance and accelerate our plans to produce high quality titles for the Windows platform." Cinematronics, which has 13 employees, will retain its Texas office. Jaguar Online STR InfoFile Online Users Growl & Purr! TO: Atari Devotees at Large FR: Earthbound Internet Inhabitant (a.k.a. Don Thomas @ Atari) REPLY TO: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com SUBJECT: *VERY* LIMITED OFFER (3/27/96 - 4/15/96) AND WHILE SUPPLIES LAST As you may (or may not) be aware, Atari Corporation has relocated our corporate offices to a shiny new facility in beautiful downtown Sunnyvale, California. Now, it's time to move our warehouse facility to a location that makes more logistic and economic sense to our offices. I am pleased to say that I have obtained Mr. T's and Mr. T's and Mr. T's (one T didn't need to reply) authorization to dig among the muck and find some worthwhile "stuff" for our long term friends and supporters on the Internet. I was told to "put aside what you (meaning me) think people might like and we'll consider letting you offer it on-line for a weekend or two". I've done that and have gotten approval to give away the items below at incredible prices. Please, be advised that although these items are available at outstanding values, they are "as-is" and probably don't have boxes or instructions all games probably have instructions although they may be photocopies). These are trade show returns, refurbs, store returns, reclaims, employee use items, media review returns, developer on-loan returns, etc. There are NO REFUNDS and the standard 90-day warranty will not apply.... BUT every item is guaranteed to work for a 30-day period or it will be replaced or repaired at Atari's option. Some of the items may have slight scratches or other small cosmetic packaging flaws. None are being sold under new conditions. All items are in limited quantity and subject to prior sale. It will be best to order by credit card so that we can adjust the transaction accurately if we are unable to ship everything requested. Okay, enough with the protect my a$$ stuff here's how to order... Send an E-Mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org OR email@example.com OR fax the information to 408/328-0909. NO PHONE CALLS PLEASE on these items. You may also snail mail your order with a money order (or credit card) to: Don's Wonderful Wacky Way Out Deal for Internet Dudes & Dudettes c/o The Atari Corporate Company that moved recently P.O. Box 61657 Sunnyvale, CA 94089-1657 Also, you may send your inquiries to any member of the STReport staff and it will be forwarded to Don Thomas of Atari ASAP. >From CompuServe's Video Gaming Forum and Asst. Sysop Larry Tipton (via the Internet): Here is a blast from the past. Enjoy. I got a pretty good laugh out of it. rec.games.video.atari Jaguar Developer Predicts Future! Scott Le Grand <legrand> >From mid-1993, ahead of my time, Parenthetical (Don't capitalize parenthetical - Steph) statements mine... "...founder of the video game industry and (professional ball dropper) the creative force behind some of the world's best-known titles (You mean Atarigames, not Atari Computers, right?), has announced the (destined to be delayed a year or so) launch of a revolutionary new (way to raise hopes and ultimately heartlessly dash them) multi-media entertainment system, the Atari Jaguar. The launch will be (real soon now, honest!) supported by aggressive advertising (two ads on some coffee cans and an informercial), promotion (buy an Atari Jaguar, and send for a FREE MANUAL!) and marketing efforts (Sam Tramiel at the Winter CES screaming "Buy a Jaguar! Or I'll KILL YA!") be centered in the New York market in the fall (5 prostitutes on Times Square wearing nothing but a Jaguar and its peripherals), with a national rollout of the product within one year. (tentatively codenamed: Operation Desert the Lynx Storm) "The Atari Jaguar, housed in a futuristic casing (Old 520ST cases spraycpainted black), is an (out of date before its release) interactive (you play it, it breaks) multi-media (works on ANY TV) system based on (the assumption that Atari owners will believe anything they hear) an Atari- designed (Uh Oh! Looks like Leonard got his hands on SPICE again!) proprietary 64-bit RISC(Y BUSINESS) processor. The 64-bit system is four times (16 bits) the technology currently seen in (reruns of Whiz Kids) the market today (tomorrow, or EVER! - S. Tramiel). The Atari Jaguar features over 16 million (design errors) colors in 24-bit true-color graphics (on the case) and produces shaded 3-D polygons (3-D polygons? No such thing... Kind of like Atari marketing) to be manipulated in a "real" world (Sam's World! Sam's World! Atari Time! EXCELLENT!) in real time. The Atari Jaguar also has (no chance) real-time texture mapping and creates spectacular video effects (when you run a coin across its exposed contacts). "The sound system is based on Atari's proprietary (We could tell you more but then we'd have to kill you), high-speed compared to a TRS-80), Digital Signal Processor dedicated to audio. The audio is 16-bit stereo (broken) CD (player in a swimming pool full of Wesson oil) quality and processes simultaneous sources of audio data (such as the owners (ranting and raving over the absence of software), allowing for very realistic sounds, as well as human voices (Free Sam Tramiel sample "Atari, no mistakes no apologies" included for additional charge), which are essential for future multi-media applications (such as the most creative use of a no software video game). "The Atari Jaguar is truly expandable (if you put it into an oven and broil it) and will include a 32-bit expansion port (which will never be used just like on the 7800) which allows for future connection into cable (Like anyone in cable will care) and telephone networks (Oh boy, phone phreaking), as well as a digital signal processing port for modem use (which will require the vastly superior Ataritech modem, schedule for April 1st 2000 release) and connection to digital audio peripherals such as DAT players. The unit will also have a compact disc peripheral, which will be double-speed and will play regular CD audio, CD + G (Karaoke) (Sing along with Sam! Doin' the no warez Polka!) and Kodak's new Photo-CD(R). "Currently, there are multiple software titles in development, which will be available on MegaCart(TM). Atari, known for (never releasing) such groundbreaking 3-D titles as BATTLEZONE 2000 and TEMPEST 2000 will issue (but never complete or release) spectacular new versions for the Atari Jaguar. New 3-D game titles will include CYBERMORPH, ALIEN VS. PREDATOR, JAGUAR FORMULA ONE RACING, and many more (Contest to determine which one gets completed and marketed to be held next year). Atari will license third-party publishers to (go broke and drink themselves to an early grave) join the Jaguar family (Honey, I bankrupted the kids!). "The Atari Jaguar system will revolutionize the (selection of carts at big lots) state of home entertainment as we see it today," said Sam Tramiel (who then went on to explain the connection between Elvis, the Men in Black, and Christina Applegate's bust), president of Atari. "The idea of (Atari releasing and supporting) a 64-bit system is earth shattering (so therefore we'll just lead you on and on and on...) and kids and adults will be amazed at (the $h!+ I'll spew to explain why it hasn't been released as the months go on) both the imagery (That Korean factory was flooded with grape Jello just as the first batch was completed, honest!) and manipulative capabilities (My wife Morgan Fairchild, who I have seen naked, actually SAW aliens steal the second batch, yeah that's it). And we are proud that (we can still string you along after all these years) our entry into the multi- media entertainment category will be fully made in America (except for chips, wires, components and casing but hey it worked for Sam Walton so go for it)." The Atari Jaguar will retail for approximately $200 (give or take $300) and (one) will be available nationwide next year. The Atari Jaguar packaged unit will include one software experience (TIC TAC TOE 2000) and a Power (Supply and a) Pad (to beat your head against when you keep asking yourself why oh why did you believe them this time?) (R) Controller with a ten-key pad and other special features (secret key sequence brings up image of Sam Tramiel laughing at you)." Fooled me once, shame on you... Fooled me twice, shame on me... Reposted by... --Larry T./Ass't Sysop EDITORIAL QUICKIES "Speak when you are angry and. .you will make the best speech. .you will ever regret!!" .D. Helms STReport International OnLine Magazine [S]ilicon [T]imes [R]eport http://WWW.STREPORT.COM AVAILABLE WORLDWIDE ON OVER 100,000 PRIVATE BBS SYSTEMS All Items quoted, in whole or in part, are done so under the provisions of The Fair Use Law of The Copyright Laws of the U.S.A. Views, Opinions and Editorial Articles presented herein are not necessarily those of the editors/staff of STReport International OnLine Magazine. Permission to reprint articles is hereby granted, unless otherwise noted. Reprints must, without exception, include the name of the publication, date, issue number and the author's name. STR, CPU, STReport and/or portions therein may not be edited, used, duplicated or transmitted in any way without prior written permission. STR, CPU, STReport, at the time of publication, is believed reasonably accurate. STR, CPU, STReport, are trademarks of STReport and STR Publishing Inc. STR, CPU, STReport, its staff and contributors are not and cannot be held responsible in any way for the use or misuse of information contained herein or the results obtained therefrom. STR OnLine! "YOUR INDEPENDENT NEWS SOURCE" March 29, 1996 Since 1987 Copyrightc1996 All Rights Reserved Issue No. 1213
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