ST Report: 15-Nov-96 #1246From: Bruce D. Nelson (aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
Date: 11/16/96-11:23:38 PM Z
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From: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson) Subject: ST Report: 15-Nov-96 #1246 Date: Sat Nov 16 23:23:38 1996 Silicon Times Report The Original Independent OnLine Magazine" (Since 1987) November 15, 1996 No.1246 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 Voice: 1-904-292-9222 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 Voted TOP TEN Ultimate WebSite 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 Courier Internal I-MODEM FAX: 904-268-2237 24hrs BCS - Toad Hall BBS 1-617-567-8642 11/15/96 STR 1246 The Original Independent OnLine Magazine! - CPU Industry Report - Corel NT News - Acrobat Reader - N64/JAG64? - HP Scanners PnP - 486 Comeback? - NEW Cardinal Modems - Crash Bandicoot - Comdex 1996 - Diamond DVD Kits - NEW Encryption Flap - Dana's Tidbits Glitch Hits 200,000 AT&T Users Virus Shuts Down EPA Network WebCrawler Awards Man $1 Million STReport International OnLine Magazine Featuring Weekly "Accurate UP-TO-DATE News and Information" Current Events, Original Articles, Tips, Rumors, and Information Hardware - Software - Corporate - R & D - Imports STReport's BBS - The Bounty International BBS, invites all BBS systems, worldwide, to participate in the provision and distribution of STReport for their members. You may call The STReport Home BBS, The Bounty @ 1- 904-268-4116. Or obtain the latest issue from our WebSite. Enjoy the wonder and excitement of exchanging all types of useful information relative to all computer types, worldwide, through the use of the Internet. All computer enthusiasts, hobbyist or commercial, on all platforms and BBS systems are invited to participate. ** WEB SITE: http//www.streport.com ** CIS ~ PRODIGY ~ DELPHI ~ GENIE ~ BIX ~ AOL IMPORTANT NOTICE STReport, with its policy of not accepting any input relative to content from paid advertisers, 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 Publisher, Staff & Editors Florida Lotto - LottoMan v1.35 Results: 11/09/96: 4 of 6 numbers, 3 three number matches >From the Editor's Desk... Comdex looms closer and closer.. Adobe is shipping Photoshop 4.0 for both the Mac and Windows arenas and its the most outstanding new graphics tool this year. Delrina/Symantec is shipping WinFax Pro 7.5 nad its simply put, amazing. Fax anywhere.. in any format, via any medium. As always, WinFax Pro is the product when it comes to Faxing ala PC. This year's Fall Show promises to be the biggest yet and the one with the most innovative technological advances yet. To even the youngest of users both direct and indirect, most all the goodies to debut at this show are milestones of one type or another in the computing industry. Voice command soft/hardware and recognition soft/hardware are ready to pounce upon the waiting markets and then, right on its heels, comes the Universal Serial Bus (USB). heard anything about it yet? You will. Once this takes hold, the IRQ blues will be a thing of the past completely. Coupled with the PCI bus.. the pair will make the pursuit of speed a secondary consideration in machines of the future. The primary consideration being the creation of new innovative goodies that'll make full use of the architecture. Stay tuned. we'll have full reports and coverage of Comdex. 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 Special Events Section R.F. Mariano J. Deegan Lloyd E. Pulley Gaming & Entertainment Kid's Computing Corner Dana P. Jacobson Frank Sereno STReport Staff Editors Michael Arthur John Deegan Brad Martin John Szczepanik Paul Guillot Joseph Mirando Doyle Helms John Duckworth Jeff Coe Steve Keipe Victor Mariano Melanie Bell Jay Levy Jeff Kovach Marty Mankins Carl Prehn Paul Charchian Vincent P. O'Hara Contributing Correspondents Dominick J. Fontana Norman Boucher Daniel Stidham David H. Mann Angelo Marasco Donna Lines Ed Westhusing Glenwood Drake Vernon W.Smith Bruno Puglia Paul Haris Kevin Miller Craig Harris Allen Chang Tim Holt Ron Satchwill Leonard Worzala Tom Sherwin Please submit ALL letters, rebuttals, articles, reviews, etc... via E-Mail to: CompuServe 70007,4454 Prodigy CZGJ44A Delphi RMARIANO GEnie ST.REPORT BIX RMARIANO AOL STReport Internet email@example.com WebSite http://www.streport.com STReport Headline News LATE BREAKING INDUSTRY-WIDE NEWS Weekly Happenings in the Computer World Compiled by: Dana P. Jacobson Net Per-Minute Charges Fought Some two dozen hardware, software and online service companies -including Apple Computer and Netscape -- are fighting what they say is an attempt by regional phone companies to charge for Internet access on a per-minute basis, just like for phone calls. Business writer David E. Kalish of The Associated Press says the group, called the DATA Coalition, contends the phone charges almost certainly would be passed along to Net users, potentially stifling future growth of the medium where currently most pay a flat monthly rate to an Internet service provider for unlimited Internet access. "Local telephone companies assert that the extra usage is clogging their lines," says Kalish. "The access fees are needed, they say, to pay for upgrades to their networks or build new ones to handle the millions of Americans going online each day for everything from movie reviews to stock trading." Pacific Bell, Nynex, Bell Atlantic and other regional phone companies complain Net usage is clogging phone lines so much that thousands of local calls are not going through. "Besides," says Kalish, "the Internet has grown into a money-making enterprise, where advertisers peddle information and goods in 'electronic storefronts' -- and as such users shouldn't be getting a free ride by local phone companies." Bell Atlantic and other regional phone companies are urging the Federal Communications Commission to eliminate the Internet service providers' exemption from regular phone rates and the FCC has started work on the issue. It expects a decision by the middle of next year. AP notes the phone companies favor a fee of about one-third penny per minute, but critics says the costs could add up to hundreds of dollars a month for subscribers used to paying just $20 a month, who tend to keep their lines open for many hours at a time. Spokeswoman Grace Hinchman of for Digital Equipment Corp., a member of the DATA Coalition, told the wire service, "We in the coalition are sure that it's going to have a chilling effect. There's a lot of rhetoric that (Internet service providers) want a free ride. That's not it at all." Hinchman said the group is trying to convince the FCC to create incentives for phone-company rivals to build alternate networks for Internet access. Virus Shuts Down EPA Network The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has shut down its mid-Atlantic region computer network, because of a computer virus that destroyed data while displaying a "smiley face" on the screens of its victims. According to The Associated Press, the virus caused differing degrees of damage to the government computers, deleting files in some and wiping out all data in others. EPA spokeswoman Leanne Nurse told the wire service the largest impact of the network shutdown was the loss of word processing and electronic mail. The agency's national databases were not affected, the EPA said. Users in the EPA's offices in Wheeling, West Virginia, first noticed trouble Wednesday evening and alerted administrators in Philadelphia, where regional headquarters are located, AP said. After an attempt Wednesday night to clear the virus, regional managers shut down the system Thursday as a precaution, Nurse said. The mid-Atlantic EPA region is responsible for federal environmental programs in Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and Washington, D.C. Nurse said the regional office hoped to have its computers back in operation by Tuesday, after the Veterans Day holiday. Meanwhile, Jim Newsom, deputy assistant regional administrator for the EPA, estimated that 15 percent of the region's work stations were contaminated. Glitch Hits 200,000 AT&T Users More than 200,000 AT&T customers were prevented from receiving e-mail for almost a day and a half this week because of a problem with a computer in the company's WorldNet system. AT&T spokeswoman Patty Allen told The Associated Press the "brownout" started at 2:35 p.m. Eastern Time on Thursday and was resolved by 10:15 last night, "but not before it affected about half of WorldNet's 425,000 subscribers," reports business writer David E. Kalish. "It did not hurt their ability to send e-mail, except if they tried to send mail to another WorldNet customer affected by the brownout," he added. No mail was lost as a result of the problem because it is being stored in other computer databases, Mike Miller, another AT&T spokesman. AT&T said it was the biggest problem to hit its online service since it launched WorldNet last March. Said Allen, "We had experienced other e-mail problems in the past that were rectified. We've never experienced a problem like this one." Kalish says the company was keeping customers informed about the problem through news groups and customer announcement areas in the online service. Customers also have been phoning the service's help line about the trouble. WebCrawler Awards Man $1 Million "The only time I've ever won anything is $50 on a bingo game up in Alaska," says 53-year-old Lancaster, Pennsylvania, fork-lift driver Ray L. Burns. But he won't be saying that anymore. Burns is now a millionaire, winning the Million Dollar WebCrawl sweepstakes on the Internet's World Wide Web. And he won the big prize with his first and only try at entering the sweepstakes, sponsored by the Net's WebCrawler search engine (http://webcrawler.com). The sweepstakes took place over the course of three months and attracted more than 350,000 individual players, most of whom took advantage of the contest's invitation to enter more than once. Burns is not a nubie on the Net. He first got interested in the Web as a way to advertise a mail-order business he had previously co-owned. He currently is online about an hour a day and used his home PC to enter the sweepstakes. In a statement from its Berkeley, California, headquarters, WebCrawler quotes Burns as saying that he's won, "a motorcycle or a sailboat to take out on the Susquehanna River, Pa., are dreams that may now become reality." WebCrawler teamed with New York-based Yoyodyne Entertainment, an online game shows developer, to implement the sweepstakes, the prize of which is awarded in the form of an annuity. Germans Consider New Net Law A new proposed law being considered by the German government would not require companies providing gateways to the Internet to police cyberspace for pornography or neo-Nazi propaganda. "The legislation would make operators of online services responsible for their own offerings," says the Reuter News Service in a report from Bonn, "but stops short of holding them liable for third-party contributions." In fact, Technology Minister Juergen Ruettgers told a news conference today that online providers would be prosecuted only for outlawed material they are aware of and have the technical means to prevent. A separate part of the law would make Germany the first country in the world to set up a framework in which unforgeable digital "signatures" backed by a personal ID code would be legally acceptable, he added. Said Ruettgers, "Providers will not be required to constantly search through their systems for outlawed material or material that could be harmful for adolescents. This is not meant as censorship." Reuters notes Germany originally had hoped to present the draft last spring, but it was delayed because federal and regional state governments only recently struck a compromise agreement to share in the jurisdiction of the law. They're service comments, "Executives at companies providing access to the Internet are likely to breathe a sigh of relief when they see the new legislation. Many had feared they could be held personally responsible for millions of pages created all across the world." Panel Backs School Net Hookups A plan to set aside $2.25 billion a year to link schools and libraries to the Internet at discounted rates has been approved by a Federal Communication Commission panel. However, the group rejected President Clinton's call to hook them up for free. The panel of federal and state regulators proposed yesterday that eligible institutions could buy access to the computer network at discounts of 20 percent to 90 percent. FCC Chairman Reed Hundt, who oversaw the panel, told Roger Fillion of the Reuter News Service, "Schools will be able to connect every single classroom to the Information Highway. The ramp will be a high-speed, high bandwidth, cutting- edge connection. The discounts, tailored to each school's individual level of need, will make building and maintaining the ramp truly affordable for every school." Reuters said the Net proposal is part of a broader plan to overhaul the multi-billion dollar "universal service" program that ensures affordable phone service to rural communities and low-income neighborhoods. The FCC must adopt rules by early May. "Officials hope the wide-ranging proposal, which stems from the new telecommunications law, eventually will generate lower phone rates through increased competition," the wire service added, "but some board members fear the plan -- to be paid for from the revenues of phone companies, cable TV operators and other communications carriers -- may prove too ambitious and ultimately push up rates." For instance, chairman Laska Schoenfelder of the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission, commented, "A universal service fund that taxes consumers billions of dollars a year is not only inconsistent with congressional intent, but could be extremely harmful nationwide to consumers." Reuters says the Net provision calls for less well off institutions and those in out-of-the-way high-cost areas being entitled to the larger discounts. The average discount would be 60 percent, officials said, adding one-third of schools would get at least an 80 percent discount, and the poorest 15 percent would get a 90 percent discount. On this, Vice President Al Gore told reporters, "It is no secret and no surprise that access to technology in the nation's schools and classrooms is tremendously unequal. Wealthier schools are twice as likely as poor schools to have Internet access, and wealthier students use computers 20 percent more than their poorer peers." Nonetheless, the new plan stops short of the president's proposal to give schools and libraries free basic service, with the nation's communications carriers footing the bill. Covering the same FCC action, Associated Press writer Jeannine Aversa characterized the Net proposal as "a centerpiece of President Clinton's second-term educational goals," a proposal that would cover 50 million students and teachers at 100,000 schools. Aversa says the FCC proposal would make available $2.25 billion per year, which would come from an existing fund paid for by telephone companies to support universal telephone access. "In addition to discounts for the Internet service itself," she writes, "schools would be given discounts on the costs of hooking them up to telecommunications networks necessary to tap into the Internet and on the costs of wiring inside classrooms." Other than for the most affluent schools, discounts would range from 40 percent to 90 percent, "depending on the wealth of the school and whether it is in a high-cost telecommunications area such as a rural community," AP says. "Cut rates also would be available to libraries." And "wealth," she writes, "would be defined by the number of students eligible for federally subsidized school lunches." For instance, schools in which less than 1 percent of students participate in the subsidized lunch program would get a 20 percent discount. AP says about half the nation's public schools were linked to the Internet in October 1995, up from 35 percent one year earlier, according to a survey the Education Department released earlier this year. However, only 9 percent of individual classrooms had access. Before becoming final, the plan must be approved by the FCC. Parts of the plan also may have to be approved by state telecommunications regulators, AP says. Computers in 40% of U.S. Homes The percentage of families owning computers has climbed to 40 percent, from 22 percent six years ago, according to new figures on consumer buying habits. In fact, says The Conference Board, consumers have been stocking up on all kinds of electronic conveniences besides PCs, including microwaves, VCRs and car phones. "Despite times of extreme weakness in the economy over the last six years," says The Associated Press in a report about the findings, "more Americans bought practical electronic goods during that period, the New York-based business-research group found in a nationwide survey of 5,000 homes." Lynn Franco, associate director of The Conference Board's Consumer Research Center, told the wire service, "The proliferation of electronic products strongly suggests that the American dream house continues to be designed for convenience." Other findings of the survey, done for The Conference Board by NFO Inc. of Greenwich, Connecticut, include: z 85 percent of the responding families had microwave ovens, compared z to 75 percent in 1990. z VCRs were found in 85 percent of the homes surveyed, up from 68 percent in 1990. In fact, 40 percent have at least two VCRs. z 27 percent own car phones, compared to just 3 percent in 1990. z 52 percent of the surveyed families have CD players, compared to 15 percent in 1990. z 70 percent have answering machines, up from 38 percent six years ago. Egghead Looks to Web for Help Egghead Inc. aims to become the first major software retailer to deliver programs over the Internet directly to customers' computers. It's a bid to turn around the company's sagging sales in traditional stores. Writing in The Wall Street Journal this morning, reporter David Bank notes Egghead's Internet delivery system is the first of several pilot projects backed by Microsoft Corp. "to preserve the role of traditional retailers in the electronic marketplace." Adds Bank, "Internet sites have sold boxed software before, but it has been delivered to customers by mail. A handful of small Internet start-ups and some software publishers also allow users to download programs directly into computers." He notes Ingram Micro Inc., the nation's largest wholesale distributor of computer hardware and software, plans to launch electronic sales experiments later this month. The Journal observes, "Analysts expect electronic software distribution to account for as much as 20 percent of retail software sales by the end of next year. By the end of the decade, they predict, it will overtake storefront and mail-order sales." Egghead, of Spokane, Washington, one of the largest software-only retailers, began offering three programs for direct download from its Web site last Friday, including Microsoft's FrontPage and Sidekick from Starfish Software Inc. By next year, Egghead expects to offer thousands of titles. Adds the paper, "Egghead will be using technology from Release Software Corp., Menlo Park, California, that allows customers to try the programs free for a short time. The software is then cut off unless buyers pay by Internet, phone, fax or mail and get a digital 'key' that allows the software to be used permanently." IBM Creates Division for NCs A new division to sell network computers -- stripped-down PCs customized for the Internet and dependent on corporate computer networks for performing functions -- has been created by IBM in a move seen as boosting Big Blue's commitment to the NC concept. Business writer David E. Kalish of The Associated Press says the unit will coordinate all IBM's efforts to develop, make and promote its NCs, which are expected to go on sale early next year at less than $700 apiece, not including a monitor. "While IBM introduced a version of the new product in September," adds Kalish, "its reorganization signaled the effort has top priority at the world's largest computer company. The network computers are a centerpiece of IBM's new strategy to reap strong profits from the combination of Internet and traditional mainframe computer technologies." Analyst Greg Blatnik of Zona Research Inc. characterized the move as "a fairly big deal," adding, "It goes well beyond just producing a cheap piece of desktop hardware." Citing an internal company announcement, Kalish quotes IBM Chairman/CEO Louis V. Gerstner as describing customer demand for NCs as "extremely high." Sun Microsystems Inc., Microsoft Corp. and other high-technology companies also are promoting versions of NCs, with software for the machines to be downloaded via the Internet or corporate networks, instead of requiring costly installation on each machine. AP says internal IBM forecasts call for network computers to capture more than 20 percent of the corporate PC market by the year 2000 -- up from 1 percent now. "That is much more optimistic than many analysts' forecasts," Kalish observes. "International Data Corp., based in Framingham, Massachusetts, expects annual U.S. sales of 2.5 million network computers in 2000, or about 3 percent of the 80 million corporate PCs expected to be sold that year." '486 CPU Headed for a Comeback? The '486 processor may be headed for a comeback. National Semiconductor has released a thin-client reference design for an Internet-based PC based on the venerable CPU. Code-named Odin, the design aims to allow PC makers to create a bare bones PC costing about $200. Odin is based on National's NS486SXF embedded processor. The company notes that the combination of an X86 architecture and an ISA bus interface will allow PC makers to take advantage of low-cost peripherals rather than create proprietary peripheral chips and custom drivers. Other Odin features include a graphics controller for SVGA monitor and TV output, Rockwell's WaveArtist single-chip audio system and a 33.6K bps modem. National notes that its design works with a variety of operating systems and application programs. The reference design will be available to PC makers and software developers in early 1997. More information is available on the World Wide Web at www.national.com/ns486. DVD-ROM Encyclopedia to Debut The first DVD-ROM encyclopedia is scheduled to debut at next week's COMDEX/Fall computer industry trade show in Las Vegas. The Reuters news services reports that Xiphias' Encyclopedia Electronica will compete against a variety CD- ROM-based titles, including Microsoft's industry-leading Encarta. The Xiphias title, will contain more than 80 minutes of MPEG-II video, far more than a CD-ROM can hold. Xiphias president Peter Black told Reuters that the title will include video clips from CBS News and the National Archives. The software will also have the ability to update its content via the Internet. Seagate Passes 100M Drive Mark Seagate Technology Inc., the world's largest disk drive maker, says it has passed the 100 million drive milestone. Founded in 1979, Seagate offered the world's first rigid magnetic disk drive for desktop PCs, the ST-506. "I am very pleased to see the tremendous growth and advancement that both Seagate and the disk drive industry have made," says Alan Shugart, Seagate's president, chairman and CEO. "The marking of Seagate's 100 millionth disk drive is significant for both ourselves and the industry." To commemorate the milestone, Seagate has presented its 100 millionth drive to the Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose, California. The Seagate Medalist 2.5GB, 3.5-inch unit is now on display in the museum. Cardinal Unveils Upgradable Modems Cardinal Technologies has unveiled a new family of 33.6K bps analog fax and data modems that can be upgraded to 56K bps as well as 128K bps ISDN support. The Lancaster, Pennsylvania-based company says the modems will utilize the "x2" 56 Kbps technology recently announced by US Robotics. The x2 technology takes advantage of the digital connections already in place between the telephone network and central site equipment used by many Internet service providers and corporate remote access servers. Cardinal's modems will also work with a $79 ISDN Option Kit that includes the necessary system software and an ISDN cable connector. Usage of the ISDN function will require the installation of an ISDN line and account from a national or local telephone company service provider. Cardinal says its new modems will start at about $149 and should be available in early 1997. HP Scanners P&P Certified Hewlett-Packard Co. reports it has received Windows 95 Plug and Play certification from Microsoft Corp. for its desktop flatbed scanners, the ScanJet 4c and ScanJet 4p. HP notes that its products are the first SCSI scanners to receive the "Designed for Microsoft Windows 95" logo. Both models are now shipping with a new Plug and Play SCSI card that simplifies scanner installation. According to HP, the card makes it easy for users to install their scanner by automatically resolving PC-system conflicts. HP is recommending that customers who have purchased but not yet installed a ScanJet 4c or ScanJet 4p to upgrade to the new card. HP does not recommend the upgrade for customers who are already using their scanner. U.S. customers who purchased a ScanJet 4c or ScanJet 4p on or after Sept. 11, 1996, may upgrade to the new HP SCSI card for shipping and handling costs of $10. Customers who purchased a ScanJet 4c or ScanJet 4p scanner before Sept. 11 may upgrade to the new card for $35. TI Unveils New Notebook PC Line Texas Instruments Inc. has announced the Extensa 900, a family of ultra-thin Notebook PCs. According to TI, the Extensa 900 is designed for users who require a lightweight mobile computer that can be transformed into a full- power, state-of-the-art multimedia desktop replacement system. Standard features include a 133MHz Pentium processor, a 1.35GB hard drive, 16MB of EDO RAM (expandable to 48MB) and an external 1.44MB floppy drive. Weighing 5.1-pounds, the base Extensa 900 offers a 12.1-inch SVGA dual-scan display. The Extensa 900T, which weighs 4.9-pounds, features a 11.3- inch SVGA active- matrix color display. Designed to remain in the office or attach to the notebook, a companion 2.2-pound Mobile Productivity Base features a modular 8x CD-ROM drive, a secondary battery with weight-reduction module, standard PC interfaces and a 32-bit Advanced PCI Card expansion slot. Extensa 900 street prices range from $3,299 to $4,299. MCI Completes Internet Upgrade A $60 million Internet upgrade has been completed by MCI Communications Corp., which says it plans to double overall Internet infrastructure capacity in 1997 because its electronic traffic is increasing by nearly 30 percent per month. Reporting from Dallas, the Reuter News Service says the upgrade: z Increases MCI's Internet infrastructure speed to 622 megabits per z second from 155 megabits per second. z Adds about 13,000 ports to accommodate increasing consumer and z business demand for Internet service. MCI chief engineering officer Fred Briggs told the wire service, "With this upgrade to 622 megabits, we continue to build on our commitment to offer MCI customers the fastest, most reliable Internet service in the world. That effort will continue in 1997, as we further boost the speed of our network, giving customers enough network speed and power to meet and exceed their needs." As noted, British Telecomm Plc and MCI earlier this month announced plans to merge. Adobe's Acrobat Reader STR Infofile Acrobat Updates New Features of the Acrobat 3.0 Reader A growing number of Web publishers is using the Adobe Acrobat suite of universal electronic publishing products to bring visually rich, compelling content to the Web. The freely available Acrobat Reader is the universal way to view, navigate and print electronic documents created in the Adobe Acrobat Portable Document Format (PDF). Acrobat 3.0 Reader is an update to the Acrobat Reader 2.1. Acrobat 3.0 includes several new features: Acrobat Reader 3.0 Beta Release 13 (Macintosh, Windows 95, Windows NT, and Windows 3.1) 27 September 1996. z This version has no expiration date. z A forms plug-in has been added; it allows Acrobat Reader users to fill in forms and submit them over the Web. It also allows use of PDF files containing dynamic controls. z A movie plug-in has been added; it allows Acrobat Reader users to play audio and video stored with PDF files on CD-ROM and hard disks. z The Windows 95/Windows NT version of the Reader supports Microsoft Internet Explorer, as well as Netscape Navigator. z A number of bugs which existed in earlier beta releases have been corrected. Acrobat Reader 3.0 Beta Release 1 (OS/2) 27 September 1996. z This version has no expiration date. z A number of bugs which existed in the previous Alpha releases have been fixed. z Anti-aliased text is now supported. Acrobat Reader 3.0 Beta Release 12 (Sun OS, Solaris, HP-UX, AIX, IRIX, LINUX) 27 September 1996 z This version has no expiration date. z A number of bugs which existed in the earlier beta releases have been fixed. z Viewing PDF One-page-at-a-time Over the Web There are four pieces of the Acrobat-on-the-Internet picture: z The Acrobat 3.0 Beta Reader for integrated viewing over the Web. z Web servers that can "byteserve" PDF files one page at a time, to the Acrobat 3.0 Beta Reader. z Optimized PDF files for progressive display and maximum file compression. z Weblinks to connect your PDF files to other content on the Web. Any non-optimized PDF file can be viewed in the Netscape window (without page-at-a-time display) with the Acrobat 3.0 Reader and Netscape Navigator 2.0 or better. Page-at-a-time display requires a Web server with byteserver capability,either built-in (as with the Netscape and Open Market server products) or as a CGI script. Best viewing performance (page-at-a-time display and progressive rendering) for PDF documents over the Web is achieved with optimized PDF files and a server with the ability to byteserve the files. The optimized PDF format and byteserver protocol are not yet final, so we have provided a set of demonstration files on Adobe's server to allow you to test the page-at-a-time performance. See for yourself how cool PDFs get even cooler. Known Problems Adobe does not provide direct end-user technical support for unreleased products. You can view the current known problems or report bugs on Adobe's Web site. How to Report Bugs You may report problems to Adobe using the Bug Report form. Check the Known Problems section to see whether your problem has already been reported. Please provide as much detail as possible about the problem you encounter. Detailed instructions are included with the Bug Report form. Due to the volume of reports we receive, Adobe cannot respond directly to individual bug reports. We do screen each report and make every effort to keep the Known Problems list up to date. We appreciate your assistance in making the Acrobat 3.0 Beta Reader a top-quality product. Electronic End-user License Agreement You may make unlimited copies of the Acrobat 3.0 Beta Reader and give copies to other persons or entities for evaluation and trial use purposes only as long as the copies contain the Electronic End-User License Agreement. The Acrobat 3.0 Reader is a beta version, does not represent final product from Adobe, and may contain bugs, errors, and other problems that could cause system failures. The Acrobat 3.0 Reader is currently available for Macintosh(R), Windows(R) 95, Windows NT(TM), Windows 3.1, SunOS, Solaris, AIX, HP-UX, IRIX, LINUX and OS/2. Comdex FALL'96 STR Spotlight Be part of the most powerful IT event in the world You can still participate! On-site registration opens Sunday, November 17th. It's over 2,000 exhibitors, over 10,000 new products, and over 200,000 attendees from over 100 countries. It's your chance to see, touch, and test- drive solutions across the IT spectrum from the Internet and server technologies to multimedia and OEM sources ... network with technical experts from every corner of the industry ... get your first look at new products at the ultimate launching pad for next-generation technologies ... and meet the big players, the start-ups, and every company in between. Powerhouse COMDEX Keynotes: Andrew Grove, CEO Intel Corp. Monday, November 18, 9:00-10:00 a.m. Bill Gates, Chairman and CEO Microsoft Corp. Tuesday, . November 19, 9:00-10:00 a.m. Jim Barksdale, President and CEO Netscape Communications Corp. Wednesday, November 20, 9:00-10:00 a.m. The COMDEX Show Daily follows the action - as it happens Don't get caught sleeping - make sure you check back throughout the show for regular updates on the latest and greatest technology news - as it breaks!" The preview edition is now live! Also, don't miss our special Las Vegas section to help you fill your hours outside the show walls. COMDEX/Fall '96 Webcast Apple will Webcast this year's COMDEX/Fall '96. Webcasts let you experience interesting and exciting events using the latest multimedia technology. Pictures, sounds, videos, text and even virtual reality bring distant happenings and news to life on your computer screen. And interactive events such as chats and discussions let you share your point of view with other participants. Spice up your COMDEX/Fall experience by using Apple's new HotSauce plug-in to nagivate the COMDEX/Fall, Show Daily and Webcast sites in 3D. Announcing a special 25th anniversary celebration of the microprocessor To mark the silver anniversary of the introduction of the microprocessor, COMDEX/Fall celebrates 25 Years of Industry Achievement -- a very special program featuring an opening keynote address from Intel CEO Andrew Grove, the man behind the microprocessor. In addition, COMDEX/FALL will feature "The 25th Anniversary Museum", a time-warp chronological walk through of computing from that first historic innovation, as well as an awards and recognition program dedicated to the products that have defined our industry... For Immediate Release Corel Announces New CLP for Upcoming Corelr Office for Windows NTr Server 4.0 New server software offers unique pay-per-server approach to volume licensing. OTTAWA, Canada -- November 11, 1996 -- Corel Corporation announced today a new, innovative licensing program for Corelr Office for Windows NTr Server 4.0, scheduled for release by late November. The program will offer simultaneous, unlimited usage of all applications in the suite to all users connected to the server. It will also allow an organization the flexibility to grow without having to purchase additional licenses -- an offering completely unique to the office automation industry. "This revolutionary pricing strategy is an incredible opportunity for any organization looking for an inexpensive and efficient network environment solution," said Dr. Michael Cowpland, president and chief executive officer of Corel Corporation. "Corporate customers will not find another licensing offering of this kind in the industry." Corel Office for Windows NT Server 4.0 will be available to corporate customers through the following three CLP (Corel License Program) purchasing options: Shrink wrap: Customers can purchase one copy of the shrink wrap software for a SRP of $1,995 US. Once installed, the applications can be accessed from both 16-bit and 32-bit workstations. The package will contain two CDs -- one containing all the Business Applications and the other containing all of the Internet Applications. Documentation for the core business applications will be available electronically in EnvoyT format, with additional paper manuals available through any Corel Authorized Reseller. There are also two paper manuals included in the box: Getting Started with Corel Office and a Corelr WEB.GRAPHICS SUITE user manual. CLP Choice: Organizations wishing to install the Corel Office for Windows NT Server 4.0 on more than one server can purchase additional licenses through CLP Choice. This license-only program has no minimum purchase restrictions and is available through any Corel Authorized Reseller at a SRP of $1,595 US. To obtain media, users simply purchase one copy of the shrink wrap version of Corel Office for Windows NT Server 4.0. To obtain documentation, users are required to purchase document sets through any Corel Authorized Reseller. CLP Universal: This option is targeted towards larger organizations with 25 servers or more using the Windows NT Server 4.0 operating system and is available through any Corel Universal Authorized Reseller. Organizations with more than 25 servers can take advantage of incremental discounts and pay as low as $1,200 US. CLP Universal further facilitates the implementation of the Corel Office for Windows NT Server 4.0 by offering annual maintenance which includes all upgrades, interims and patches available during the year. Premium support contacts or incidents will also be available to organizations purchasing this option to assist in implementation and management. Corel Office for Windows NT 4.0 Designed specifically for the Windows NT Server 4.0, the new suite offers powerful business applications, advanced Internet and Intranet technology, efficient network installation, aggressively low pricing and electronic technical support. Once the package is installed on the Windows NT Server 4.0, users of all three Windows platforms, including Windowsr 3.1x, Windowsr 95 and Windows NTr, can access relevant applications through the network. Corel Office for Windows NT 4.0 is scheduled to begin shipping by the end of November 1996. Windows 95 and Windows NT client applications include Corel WordPerfect 7, Corel Quattro Pro 7, Corel Presentations 7, Paradox 7, InfoCentral 7, Corel Time Line, Envoy 7 Viewe, Netscape Navigator 2.02, Corel WEB.GRAPHICS SUITE, Corel WEB.DATA, as well as the new Corel WEB.Site Builder, a graphical tool for creating and managing an interactive Web site without the need to write software code. The Windows 3.1x version includes Corel WordPerfect 6.1, Corel Quattro Pro 6.0, Corel Presentations 3.0, Paradox 5.0, Envoy 1.0 Viewer, Netscape Navigator 2.02 and Corel WEB.GRAPHICS SUITE. Corel Office for Windows NT 4.0 also includes Netscape FastTrack ServerT, which can be accessed by 16-bit and 32-bit workstations, 5,000 clipart images, 7,500 Internet-ready clipart images, over 150 fonts and on-line documentation. Support Classic (toll-line), Priority or Premium Support services are available at an extra charge and can be purchased directly from Corel or from a Corel Universal Authorized Reseller. Clients who purchase maintenance in the CLP Universal option are the only customers entitled to Premium Support, the highest level of support offered by Corel. Corel Corporation Incorporated in 1985, Corel Corporation is recognized internationally as an award-winning developer and marketer of productivity applications, graphics and multimedia software. Corel's product line includes CorelDRAWT, Corelr WordPerfectr Suite 7, Corelr Office Professional, CorelCADT, CorelVIDEOT and over 30 multimedia software titles. Corel's products run on most operating systems, including: Windows, Macintoshr, UNIX, MS-DOS and OS/2 and are consistently rated among the strongest in the industry. The company ships its products in over 17 languages through a network of more than 160 distributors in 70 countries world-wide. Corel is traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (symbol: COS) and on NASDAQ-National Market System (symbol:COSFF). For more information visit Corel's home page on the Internet at http://www.corel.com. Corel and WordPerfect are registered trademarks and CorelDRAW, CorelVIDEO, Corel VENTURA and CorelCAD are trademarks of Corel Corporation or Corel Corporation Limited. All products mentioned are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies. 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 LEXMARK OPTRA C COLOR LASER PRINTER For a limited time only; If you wish to have a FREE sample printout sent to you that demonstrates LEXMARK Optra C SUPERIOR QUALITY 600 dpi Laser Color Output, please send a Self Addressed Stamped Envelope [SASE] (business sized envelope please) to: STReport's LEXMARK Printout Offer P.O. Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32205-6155 Folks, the LEXMARK Optra C has to be the best yet. It is far superior to anything we've seen or used as of yet. It is said that ONE Picture is worth a thousand words. The out put from the Lexmark Optra C is worth ten thousand words! Send for the free sample now. (For a sample that's suitable for framing, see below) Guaranteed. you will be amazed at the superb quality. (please, allow at least a two week turn-around). If you would like a sample 8+x11 printout that's suitable for framing. Yes that's right! Suitable for Framing. Order this package. It'll be on special stock and offer superb quality and originality. We obtained a copy of a 1927 COLOR ENGRAVER'S ADVERTISING YEAR BOOK. Our Scanner is doing "double duty"! The results will absolutely blow you away. If you want this high quality sample package please include a check or money order in the amount of $6.95 (covers expenses only) Please, make checks or money orders payable to; RFM. Be sure to include your full return address and telephone number . The sample will be sent to you protected, not folded in a 9x12 envelope. Don't hesitate.. you will not be disappointed. This "stuff" is gorgeous! 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 EDUPAGE STR Focus Keeping the users informed Edupage Contents New Encryption Blow-Up Likely Telecom Panel Recommends Discounts For Schools, Libraries Egghead Moves Software Sales To The Internet Oracle Puts IT Training Online Big Mac -- Exponential Working On 500-Mhz Mac Chip SEC Files First Case For Stock Manipulation Using Internet WorldNet Subscribers Get A Day Off From E-Mail Revealing Software Glitch Bares Credit Card Info On The Web Cray Unveils Teraflop Supercomputer Harvard's Business School Embraces High-Tech Online Training Poised For A Boost Businesses Reporting A PC Shortage Diamond Systems To Offer DVD-ROM Kits IBM Forms Networking Unit IBM And Siemens Use Net To Let Utilities Do Power Trades Digerati Less Inclined To See A Library In Their Future Full Menu From Apple Interval Research To Spin Off Three Start-Ups Intellectual Property Treaty Worries Some Academics Internet Transaction Tax Urged IBM To Buy Educational Software Company McNealy Predicts Sunny Future Pointcast Rides Wavephore's Network IBM Targets Web Server Market Junk Fax Crackdown In Canada FTC Shuts Down Pyramid Scam Microsoft Joins MCI/BT To Develop Global Intranets NEW ENCRYPTION BLOW-UP LIKELY Because it makes use of a 128-bit encryption code that is much more powerful than the 40-bit code authorized for export by the Clinton Administration, a $300 TV set-top device developed for Web-surfing and e-mail has been classified in the "munitions" category to keep it away from terrorists and criminals. The device is manufactured by the Sony and Philips corporations based on a design by Web TV Networks, Inc., which had planned to market it next year in Europe and Japan. However, having recently proposed a "key recovery" encryption plan using third parties to hold parts of the encryption key, the Clinton Administration is unlikely to allow exportation of the Web TV device. (New York Times 8 Nov 96 C2) TELECOM PANEL RECOMMENDS DISCOUNTS FOR SCHOOLS, LIBRARIES A panel of federal and state telecommunications regulators has made its recommendations regarding expansion of the universal-service system, suggesting that rural health-care providers, schools and libraries all have access to new telecommunications services at discounted rates. The panel's findings, which were submitted to the Federal Communications Commission, recommended a tiered system for discounts to school systems, from 20% for the country's wealthiest school districts, to 90% for low-income areas. The subsidies could total as much as $2.25 billion a year. (Wall Street Journal 8 Nov 96 B17) EGGHEAD MOVES SOFTWARE SALES TO THE INTERNET Egghead Inc. has become the first major software retailer to deliver its computer programs directly to the customer via the Internet. A number of Internet sites sell software online, but the product is then boxed up and shipped to the buyer by mail. Egghead's move is the first of several pilot projects backed by Microsoft to bolster the ability of traditional retailers to compete with software companies that distribute their products directly via the Net. Analysts predict that online distribution will account for 20% of retail software sales by the end of next year. (Wall Street Journal 8 Nov 96 B6) ORACLE PUTS IT TRAINING ONLINE Oracle's education unit will begin offering information technology training courses over the Internet, beginning in December. By next summer, the company plans to expand from the original 75 third-party courses to more than 1,000. "We'll provide one-stop shopping for all kinds of corporate training," says Oracle's senior director of worldwide marketing. The company has about 60 partnerships with other vendors and training companies, including Hewlett-Packard, Lotus, Microsoft and Novell, that are providing the content and technical support for the online venture. "The Holy Grail of training via the Internet is the ability to slice and dice content to suit individuals' training needs," says the marketing director of HP's education unit. (Information Week 4 Nov 96 p106) BIG MAC -- EXPONENTIAL WORKING ON 500-MHz MAC CHIP Exponential Technology recently debuted its X704 microprocessor, a 500-MHz PowerPC chip slated for use in Apple Macintosh computers, as well as machines made by DayStar Digital Inc., Power Computing Corp. and UMAX Computer Corp. Apple has worked closely with Exponential engineers during the development process and is rewriting the Mac ROMs to function at the higher speeds. The X704 is based on BiCMOS technology -- a combination of the CMOS technology typical in microprocessors and the bipolar architecture more commonly found in mainframe processors. The X704 chips are scheduled to ship in March 1997. (MacWeek 3 Nov 96) SEC FILES FIRST CASE FOR STOCK MANIPULATION USING INTERNET The Securities & Exchange Commission has filed a suit alleging a massive, ongoing market manipulation of the stock Systems of Excellence Inc. The Florida company's chief executive has been accused of distributing unregistered shares of the company to accounts controlled by him and to a market research company that published an Internet-transmitted stock market newsletter. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution 9 Nov 96 H3) WORLDNET SUBSCRIBERS GET A DAY OFF FROM E-MAIL The AT&T WorldNet Internet access service (which, with 425,000 customers is the second-largest Internet access provider, after Netcom) experienced a computer problem last week, which prevented more than 200,000 of its customers from receiving e-mail for more than a day. No mail was lost. (New York Times 9 Nov 96 p29) REVEALING SOFTWARE GLITCH BARES CREDIT CARD INFO ON THE WEB Some Web shoppers have recently had their worst fears about electronic commerce confirmed -- the credit card information they trustingly typed in was accessible by anyone using a simple Web browser. The sites affected had improperly installed a software program called SoftCart, made by Mercantec Inc., to handle their transactions. "Our standard documentation clearly explains how to avoid these security break-ins," says Mercantec's president. The problem was attributed to human error, which occurred when inexperienced installers failed to place completed order forms in directories not accessible to Web browsers. Vendors affected by the glitch say they've taken steps to remedy the situation. (Wall Street Journal 8 Nov 96 B6) CRAY UNVEILS TERAFLOP SUPERCOMPUTER Silicon Graphic's Cray Research unit has unveiled its new CRAY T3E-900 supercomputer capable of performing a trillion calculations per second, becoming the first company to bring a teraflop system to market. Shipments will begin in Spring 1997, with prices starting at $500,000. Cray anticipates selling the super-fast systems to oil companies and other exploratory concerns, which could use the machine's power to map and analyze sites to find oil and minerals for extracting. The new machines can handle in just a few days calculations that it would take less powerful systems up to three months to process. (New York Times 12 Nov 96 A18) HARVARD'S BUSINESS SCHOOL EMBRACES HIGH-TECH Harvard Business School has completed an $11-million high-tech overhaul, the brainchild of dean Kim Clark who took over a year ago. The new MBA curriculum is focused on the Web, which is used to organize and deliver information to students, including multimedia content and links to corporate sites. Before last year, courses were mostly text-based, with some supplemental videotaped material. "We're trying to build programs that allow students to experience the environments they'll be likely to face in the outside world," says one Harvard business professor. "In traditional case studies, we have to rely on the text to create a picture in the students' minds. Now, we have much richer media to do this for us... One of our objectives is for students to come out with a certain literacy with the technology." (Chronicle of Higher Education 15 Nov 96 A29) ONLINE TRAINING POISED FOR A BOOST As the costs of bricks-and-mortar-based learning experiences skyrocket, companies increasingly are turning to technology to deliver training and education. Quality Dynamics Inc. predicts that by the year 2000, half of all corporate training will be delivered via technology. A separate study by the Gartner Group projects the demand for technology-based training rising 10% a year for the next two years, to $12 billion. "Corporate America spends $50 billion a year on continuing education to improve their employees' skill sets and retrain them to deal with the rapid pace of change in the workplace," says the CEO of The Home Education Network, affiliated with UCLA. "More and more of that funding is going to go into distance learning." (Information Week 4 Nov 96 p32) BUSINESSES REPORTING A PC SHORTAGE Some businesses are reporting a shortage of high-end personal computers, and Intel is confirming that demand has outpaced supply of its popular 200 MHz Pentium Pro microprocessor. An Intel spokesman says the company is noticing "a general tightness across the board" as sales of high-powered PCs exceed projections in what was predicted to be a relatively flat fourth quarter. (Miami Herald 11 Nov 96) DIAMOND SYSTEMS TO OFFER DVD-ROM KITS Diamond Multimedia Systems says it plans to incorporate Toshiba's DVD-ROM drives into its multimedia kits for PCs, with shipments planned for early 1997. The Diamond kits are likely to be the first DVD (digital video disk) products for computers to hit the market. (Investor's Business Daily 12 Nov 96 A18) IBM FORMS NETWORKING UNIT IBM has formed a separate unit to concentrate on building and selling network computers, or NCs, targeted at customers who require specific functions, such as Internet connectivity, but don't need a full-fledged PC to accomplish that. "Customer interest in our NC initiatives has been extremely high," says Chairman Louis Gerstner. "Customers are looking for solutions that lower the cost of desktop computing and provide access to networks." (Investor's Business Daily 12 Nov 96 A18) IBM AND SIEMENS TO USE NET TO LET UTILITIES DO POWER TRADES IBM and a unit of Siemens will work together to develop an Internet-based system to allow utility companies to reduce costs by making it easier for them to temporarily use each others' transmission lines. Currently, 70% of this specialized market is controlled by the small Austin, Texas company TradeWave and two partners. (Wall Street Journal 12 Nov 96 A6) DIGERATI LESS INCLINED TO SEE A LIBRARY IN THEIR FUTURE A survey by the Benton Foundation, which advocates wider public access to libraries, concludes that computer users are far more likely than non- computer users to think that libraries will become less important in the future; the survey also indicates that persons between the ages of 18 and 24 are less willing to pay higher taxes to support libraries. < http://www. benton.org > (Atlanta Journal-Constitution 12 Nov 96 C3) FULL MENU FROM APPLE In partnership with Mega Bytes International, a firm owned by London real estate developers, Apple Computer will be opening an international chain of "cybercafe" restaurants offering customers Web access, videoconferencing at every table, and a full menu of international foods. The restaurants will also be used to sell Macintosh software, and will be designed by Landmark Entertainment, a theme-park development firm that has undertaken such projects as "Jurassic Park: The Ride." (Los Angeles Times 12 Nov 96) INTERVAL RESEARCH TO SPIN OFF THREE START-UPS Closely held Interval Research -- founded by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen -- is spinning off three separate start-up companies in an effort to commercialize some of its more viable inventions. One company, Purple Moon, will focus on developing interactive software and related products for girls age 7 to 12. Much of the product line is inspired by computer-design expert Brenda Laurel, whose work has focused on discovering why many girls don't find today's videogames entertaining and how to engage their interest. Another, Ogopogo Studies, will use live video combined with computer- generated images to enable children to create imaginary landscapes and situations. The third, Carnelian Inc., will market technology developed for online publishers, incorporating new payment mechanisms and copyright protections. "These represent the things that were ripe to take to market," says Interval CEO David Liddle. "We don't want anybody to conclude that they are the whole scope of what we are doing here." (Wall Street Journal 13 Nov 96 A3) INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY TREATY WORRIES SOME ACADEMICS A multinational treaty on intellectual property protection for databases, slated for consideration at the World Intellectual Property Organization's meeting next month in Geneva, has scientists, librarians and some scholarly societies concerned over what they view as overly broad protections for information contained in a database. While database publishers need some protection against digital piracy, any solution should also protect "the interests of society and the full and free flow of information for scientific research," says the president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Academy has joined with the Institute of Medicine in recommending that the U.S. take "no precipitous action" on the treaty. A lawyer at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has called scientists' concerns about fair use overblown. He says the draft treaty contains provisions to allow the U.S. to enact a fair-use exemption in the legislation it would pass to enact the treaty. (Chronicle of Higher Education 15 Nov 96 A31) INTERNET TRANSACTION TAX URGED Acting to stem the tide toward broad taxation of Internet-based activities, the Interactive Services Association has called for state and local taxation entities to target online purchasers rather than the entire information technology industry. "The industry believes that the only type of tax that can be applied effectively to Internet and online transactions will be a transaction tax that is imposed upon the purchaser, not upon the industry," says the executive summary of a soon-to-be-released ISA white paper on the topic. The paper also urges one uniform tax rate within each state: "The greatest threat to the type of tax system contemplated here is any requirement that a remote seller have to account for a multiplicity of taxes at lower levels of government." ISA warns that "relieving the industry of such a requirement is the key to obtaining the industry's cooperation" in collecting such taxes, and suggests that states move slowly in developing their tax policies for the online industry. "A deliberate and cooperative approach will avoid the dangers that lurk in precipitate and uninformed action on the part of the states." (BNA Daily Report for Executives 8 Nov 96 H3) IBM TO BUY EDUCATIONAL SOFTWARE COMPANY IBM is buying Edmark Corporation, the Redmond, California company that sells educational software to schools and homes. Because of its small size, Edmark has had difficulties convincing large retailers to place its products on the shelves. With this acquisition, IBM will be placing new emphasis on selling to consumers, and may also use Edmark's strong presence in schools to sell more hardware there. (New York Times 14 Nov 96 C4) MCNEALY PREDICTS SUNNY FUTURE Sun Microsystems CEO Scott McNealy predicts that in five years, Sun will be one of the "Big Three" hardware providers: "We want to be a computer equipment supplier providing the `Web tone' and `data tone' to MIS departments and Internet service providers. We'll provider the servers. We'll do chips, software, the whole deal. Who do I think will be the big three players? ...IBM is the leader in the host-based computing market. WinTel is the leader in the desktop stand-alone computing market. We're the leader in the network computing model. I think the network computer model is the only one that matters down the road." (Investor's Business Daily 14 Nov 96 A8) POINTCAST RIDES WAVEPHORE'S NETWORK PointCast Inc., which offers a real-time newscast service via the Web, is teaming up with WavePhore to offer businesses a subscription-based service using WavePhore's proprietary satellite or FM wireless data broadcast network as the delivery vehicle. The OneCast service will offer a combination of public news, internal company news and business-to-business news, using its Pro-Server software. "The premium service will run alongside the PointCast service and the internal newscasts," says PointCast's marketing VP. "Every time something happens, it flashes on your screen in a headline." (Broadcasting & Cable 4 Nov 96 p67) IBM TARGETS WEB SERVER MARKET IBM says it's happy to let Netscape and Microsoft duke it out on the Web browser front -- what Big Blue's really interested in is the server software that runs the computers hosting Web sites and other information. "Nothing helps us more than competitors that become distracted," says IBM Internet division head Irving Wladawsky-Berger, who says Microsoft is "out of their league" when it comes to developing industry-specific Internet applications capable of operating on a global basis. Meanwhile, Lotus president Jeff Papows thinks Netscape lacks the experience and workforce numbers to support and maintain Web server software that could compete with Lotus's Domino. "We've got more people in Akron, Ohio than they've got worldwide." (Wall Street Journal 13 Nov 96 B6) JUNK FAX CRACKDOWN IN CANADA The Canadian federal regulatory agency for telecommunications has limited the hours during which uninvited "junk fax" calls can be made in British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec, and has reduced (from 30 days to 7 days) the amount of time telemarketers can take to remove a name from a junk fax list when asked to do so. (CTV Network 7 Nov 96) FTC SHUTS DOWN PYRAMID SCAM The Federal Trade Commission has shut down a pyramid scheme run by a California company called The Mentor Network, which induced people to pay $30 a month to the network and to recruit three additional subscribers, for a promised eventual payoff of about $12,000. The company claimed to be helping raise money for a children's charity. (Atlanta Journal- Constitution 14 Nov 96 G12) MICROSOFT JOINS MCI/BT TO DEVELOP GLOBAL INTRANETS Microsoft is joining forces with MCI and BT to manage private communications networks for global corporations and their clients. In the heated competition to provide intranet services for multinational companies, the Microsoft/MCI/BT team will be facing off against such opponents as Sprint, AT&T, and IBM. (Wall Street Journal 14 Nov 96 B6) Edupage is written by John Gehl (firstname.lastname@example.org) & Suzanne Douglas (email@example.com). 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: firstname.lastname@example.org 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: email@example.com and in the body of the message type: unsubscribe edupage... Subscription problems: firstname.lastname@example.org. 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 email@example.com. 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: firstname.lastname@example.org 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 email@example.com. 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 firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject "subscribe"; or see < http://www.ijs.com >. For the Hebrew edition, send mail to email@example.com containing : SUBSCRIBE Leketnet-Word6 <name> or see < http://www.kinetica.co.il/ newsletters/leketnet/ >. For the Hungarian edition, send mail to: send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. 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: <email@example.com for info. For the Portuguese edition, contact firstname.lastname@example.org 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 Crash Bandicoot Strategy Guide Below is a specific strategy guide which will help you beat the game. Not all the level hints are complete, but it does tip you in the right direction. This strategy guide will allow you to find between 95% and 100% of the gems (if you're good enough). Good luck and may the mango be with you! Gems The Gems are the most sought after item in Crash Bandicoot. If you find one, you can consider yourself an avid gamer. However, if you happen to find them all, you will be praised by whoever witnesses this feat, and be hailed among the ranks of Zeus and Icarus as the ultimate gaming God. There are two different kinds of Gems, the white and the multiple colored. White Gems can be considered as the easy to find generic brand. These only come into play at the very end of the game, forming a path to something terrific. The colored Gems are one per color and are used as links to hidden areas that will allow you to find certain boxes on specific levels. Example: z Let's say you find the Blue Gem on The High Road level. This Gem will open up other areas in certain levels (such as Cortex Power) where it forms a bridge across a slime pit. Before you find these colored Gems you may see a glimpse of a placement piece which is the same color as the Gem. This means you need that colored Gem to pass a certain feat on the level. Now, begin your hunt. To find one Gem is a task in itself. You must pass a level without dying and destroy every box on the level. Most boxes are easy to reach, although maybe one or two are hidden. If you beat a level without dying, you'll be greeted with either a Gem Screen (if you find all the boxes), or a Box Screen (meaning you've missed one or more). This screen will show you how many boxes you missed by dropping them on Crash's head. Do the level over, until you get a perfect. Bonus Level The Bonus Level is the only point in the game where saves or passwords are available. To find a Bonus Level you'll have to find three strange clown- like icons hidden within a level. Once the third one is picked up, you'll instantly be teleported to the hidden area where certain obstacles must be overcome before a save can be managed. There is also Boss Bonus Icons and Super Bonus World icons. Collecting three Boss Icons brings you to a Bonus Level that doesn't allow you to save, though it does offer many free lives. The Super Bonus Icon acts in the same manner, but it holds a great surprise for those who find its three icons. These icons are spread throughout the land. Three icons, three islands. Hint. Hint. Aku Aku Meet Crash's mighty sidekick. He not only journeys with Crash but also gives him hit points. The hit point meter goes up to two (once two Aku Aku masks are obtained). If you pick up three, Crash will throw on the Aku Aku mask and promenade around with partial invincibility. Look for this mask in boxes, around corners, and sometimes floating in the open. Boxes These are what you're looking for. Seek and destroy! The boxes come in all different shapes and sizes. Some are damaging to your health, others are bonuses that will put a smile on your face. Here's a breakdown of what to look for. Aku Aku Smash one of these and Crash will gain a hit point. 1-Up This box has a picture of Crash on it. Open it and add the 1-Up to your arsenal. Exclamation This box will trigger all the clear silhouette boxes you see. Breakable Arrow Jump on this to reach new heights. Question Mark What's inside is a mystery...? Unlabeled These boxes always contain one mango. Unlabeled With Stripes These boxes always contain ten mangos. Must be jumped on or bumped from the bottom to access this delicious fruit. Dynamite Ouch. These hurt Crash. Nonetheless, they come in handy for destroying multiple boxes while on the run. (Island 1 ) This island acts as both an introductory course for the gamer and an essential base for Gem collecting. Learn how to move and pick up the accessible Gems before you proceed to Island 2. LEVEL 1 -- Sanity Beach (White Gem) z Hint: The only trouble on this level will probably occur at the exclamation switch. The consecutive box jump is difficult but can easily be conquered by timing the jumps. Watch Crash's shadow to see where you are going to land. LEVEL 2 -- Jungle Rollers (White Gem -- requires Green Gem) Access to Bonus World 1 z Hint: It's impossible to find all the boxes without having the Green Gem accessed (The Lost City - Island 2). The rest of the level is a walk in the park. LEVEL 3 -- The Great Gate (White Gem -- requires Yellow Gem) Access to Bonus World 2 z Hint 1: Don't bother trying to find all the boxes on this level unless the Yellow Gem is accessed (The Lab -Island 3). z Hint 2: When you approach a breakable arrow box that appears to lead nowhere (sky background), jump on it and push towards the background. A hidden 1-up is awaiting your arrival. Do the same on the next breakable arrow box to find the hidden box on this level. LEVEL 4 -- Boulders (White Gem) z Hint: Run like a mad dog! Use Crash's spin move to break the boxes on the boulder paths. Don't try to jump on them, you'll die a horrible death. LEVEL 5 -- Upstream (White Gem -- requires Gold Gem) Access to Bonus World 3 z Hint 1: The first waterfall holds a box with a 1-Up behind it. Carefully jump across the Gold Gem path to find it. The Gold Gem is found in The Generator Room - Island 3. z Hint 2: The second Gold Gem path is at the very end of the level. Two boxes are found through this path. Papu Papu (Boss) Dodge Papu Papu's swinging stick attack and jump on his head. Do this procedure three times and he'll be beaten. LEVEL 6 -- Rolling Stones (White Gem -- requires Blue Gem) Access to Bonus World 4 Access to Boss Bonus World 1 z Hint: Half-way through the level you'll encounter an unstable platform with a rolling rock in front. If you look closely you'll see the Blue Gem (The High Road - Island 3). Jump down the Blue Gem path to uncover the missing level boxes and three extra lives. LEVEL 7 -- Hog Wild (White Gem) z Hint: Get on your hog and ride! Utilizing skillful jumps and accurate timing is the only way to be a flawless victor in Hog Wild. LEVEL 8 -- Native Fortress (White Gem -- requires Pink Gem) Access to Bonus World 5 z Hint 1: Once on the top screen (sky background), locate a ledge with a turtle, a plant and an unmarked box. Jump on the turtle so it flips on its back, exposing the bouncy stomach. Jump on the stomach and break the unmarked box. On the second bounce, flip yourself up to the ledge in the background. Walk on the path to find one of the hidden boxes. z Hint 2: As in hint one there are two more "bounce into the background" spots. Both are on the same plain as the first and are accessed by jumping off of a fire ledge. z Hint 3: The majority of hidden boxes on this level are hidden in the clouds. The Pink Gem (Slippery Climb - Island 3) needs to be accessed in order to find these. (Island 2) Island 2 holds the first key and the first colored Gem. The stages are tough but not unbeatable. LEVEL 9 -- Up the Creek (White Gem) Access to Bonus World 6 z Hint: Once you've located and accessed the Exclamation Box, trek back across the lily pad path to the waterfall. You'll notice that four lily pads are constructing a path across to the two boxes sitting on the ledge. You can either walk the lily path and collect an extra life, or simply jump from the log towards to the two boxes. Set the timer on the dynamite and use the breakable arrow box to shoot back up to the log. The dynamite will destroy the last boxes for you. Ripper Roo (Boss) The objective here is to detonate the TNT boxes when Ripper Roo is on a nearby square. Memorize his patterns and time your jumps. Hit him three times and he's a goner. LEVEL 10 -- The Lost City (Green Gem) Access to Bonus World 7 Access to Boss Bonus World 2 z Hint 1: To destroy the first two boxes behind the steel girder at the level entrance you simply must jump from the background ledge. Then, to return to the playing field, jump around the girder. z Hint 2: There is an Exclamation box hidden in the fourth cubby hole on this level. To activate it, simply jump on top of the unmarked crate and hit the jump button for a bigger boost. z Hint 3: As you start to ascend to the top of this level, look closely to your left. A second Exclamation box is waiting to be activated. Once active six boxes will appear at the beginning of the top part of the level. LEVEL 11 -- Temple Ruins (White Gem) z Hint 1: When you see a mango dangling off to the left side of a platform, make a gigantic leap into the empty void. You'll land on invisible boxes that will appear as you step on them. Several boxes are located here. z Hint 2: The rest of the level should be a cake walk. Be sure to check behind every pillar. LEVEL 12 -- Road to Nowhere (White Gem-- requires Red Gem) Access to Bonus World 8 z Hint: At one of the checkpoints you'll notice that a Red Gem is near. Jump on it and allow it to take you to a hidden area. The first order of business here is to activate the Exclamation box to the right. Use the box that appears to activate the one to the left. The last feat is to activate the box in the middle. Jump off the box that appears (from activation #2) and land in the middle of the floating metal. Four boxes will appear in the background. Easy taking! LEVEL 13 -- Boulder Dash (Key and White Gem-- requires Red Gem) z Hint: Find all the boxes to access the Key which will open the Island 2 Bonus level (Whole Hog). Smash all the boxes on Whole Hog to receive the White Gem for Boulder Dash. LEVEL 14 -- Sunset Vista (White Gem) Access to Bonus World 9 Access to Boss Bonus World 3 Access to Super Bonus Icon -- Obtaining this icon is fairly self explanatory. Follow the box stairs on the top level and jump onto the moving wall containing the icon. z Hint 1: At the top of the level you'll see an Exclamation box that is out of reach. Lure the goon from the right to stand underneath the box. Jump off its back and propeller yourself into the box. The boxes you are looking for are directly behind you in the background. z Hint 2: Always look in the background on this level. Boxes are hidden all about. Koala Kong (Boss) Hint1: Dodge the four boulders that Koala Kong throws. The fourth one will roll in front of you. Use your spin attack to send it back for a definite hit. Repeat this process four times to advance to the next stage. (Island 3) All but one of the colored Gems are located on this island. If you want to conquer the game thoroughly, you'll need to find all the boxes on each of these difficult levels. LEVEL 15 -- Heavy Machinery (White Gem) Access to Bonus World 10 Access to Boss Bonus World 4 z Hint: To find the first Boss Icon, locate two steam and two ice pipes right next to each other. To the right should be a pit with two flying spike bots. Drop between them and proceed to the left to receive your prize. Several boxes are also hidden down here. Beating the level should be a breeze. LEVEL 16 -- Cortex Power (White Gem-- requires Blue Gem) z Hint: Take the path to the right all the way until it ends (be sure to hit the exclamation box). Now backtrack down the stairs to the second fork in the road on this level. Take the left route (you'll see a Checkpoint box) and go up. Collect all the boxes until the next fork in the road (you'll see a breakable arrow box). Now go back to the right (where you just where) and go to the first fork in the road on this level. Go left and take the Blue Gem path even further to the left until you reach a breakable arrow box. This is the final run and a tough one at that. Break all the boxes from here on out and you'll receive your White Gem. LEVEL 17 -- Generator Room (Gold Gem) Access to Bonus World 11 z Hint: There's only one troublesome area in the Generator Room. At the beginning of the level you'll run into an area where the Exclamation box is needed (you should have already activated it). Time your jumps and make sure you get the boxes on the platform first (don't spend too much time here or the platform will fall). Now go back and take out the boxes on the path. The rest of the boxes are easy to get to. LEVEL 18 -- Toxic Waste (White Gem) Access to Bonus World 12 z Hint: This level will pull a Bandicoot on you time after time. Basically, all you have to do is run the straight line and hope for the best. Taking two Aku Aku's with you is a good idea Pinstripe (Boss) Beating this guy is fairly easy, you just have to keep your eyes peeled. Hide behind the couch until he jumps off the table. Wait until he stops shooting and spin into him. The only way to dodge his shoots is to hide behind the two couches in the foreground. Duck out and spin in is a great strategy for this smelly mouse. LEVEL 19 -- The High Road (Blue Gem) Access to Bonus World 13 z Hint: At the beginning of the level, walk back and you will see a floating mango. Jump directly over the mango and two boards will appear to catch your fall. Continue on taking giant leaps towards the screen. You'll eventually get past the ghost boards and land on solid land with four hidden boxes at your disposal. LEVEL 20 -- Slippery Climb (Red Gem) Access to Boss Bonus World 5 z Hint: Pushing Crash to the limit and making accurate jumps is the only way to solve this level. Patience is the key. LEVEL 21 -- Lights Out (Purple Gem and Key #2 -- requires Yellow Gem) z Hint 1: Once the Yellow Gem is activated (The Lab - Island 3) you will find a alternative level end. Using this will give you the key to Fumbling in the Dark. Note: The Yellow Gem is placed half-way through the level. z Hint 2: Break all the boxes on Fumbling in the Dark and you will receive the Purple Gem for Lights out. LEVEL 22 -- Jaws of Darkness (White Gem-- requires Blue Gem) Access to Bonus World Icon 13 -- Located in the bottom box in the pillar at the first Checkpoint. z Hint: The Blue Gem is located right after the Checkpoint. This is the longest bonus area in the game and careful jumps are a must. LEVEL 23 -- Castle Machinery (White Gem -- Needs Green Gem) z Hint: The Green Gem will only give you access to twenty-five free lives. This level can be defeated without any gems. None of the boxes are hidden on this level. Nitrus Brio (Boss) z Hint: Defeating this mad scientist is an easy task. Dodge all of the red and green beaker bombs. The green ones will turn into moving blobs, jump on their top to send them flying into Nitrus Brio. Once his hit points are down to three, Brio will transform into a repulsive demon. Jump off the platform and whack him in the head. Repeat this process until he collapses. LEVEL 24 -- The Lab (Yellow Gem) z Hint: All the jumping skills of classic platformers are combined into this fairly perplexing level. Time your jumps and don't be afraid to veer off to the side when you're in trouble. Get to the end of this level without dying and you'll receive the Yellow Gem. LEVEL 25 -- The Great Hall (requires all White Gems) z Hint: Choose your path. Go straight to the deadly Dr. Neo Cortex; or if you've collected all the White Gems, go for the super bonus! What awaits is a super bonus! LEVEL 26 -- Dr. Neo Cortex (Boss) z Hint: It's the last battle! Dodge his red and blue attacks and send the green ones back at him! Enjoy the ending! STReport's "Partners in Progress" Advertising Program The facts are in... STReport International Online Magazine reaches more users per week than any other weekly resource available today. Take full advantage of this spectacular reach. Explore the superb possibilities of advertising in STReport! 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STReport is published and released weekly on Fridays Evenings. All sizes based on a full color, eight and a half by eleven inch page. Email us at or, for quick action call us at: VOICE: 904-292-9222 10am/5pm est FAX: 904-268-2237 24hrs Support BBS DATA: 904-268-4116 or, write us at: STR Publishing, Inc. P.O. Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32205 STR hopes you will take full advantage of this wonderful opportunity to provide information concerning your company and your product line to Computer Users, world wide via STReport International Online Magazine (Since 1987). And, at the same time, helping to keep the very best Independent Online Magazine available each and every week for many years to come. N64/JAG64 STR Spotlight "Shades of the Tramiel Mystique" N64 Tracing JAGUAR'S Footsteps ? By Ralph F. Mariano How many of you have a "Game Console" or two in use at home or work? As most experienced Gamers will tell you, the single most tragic story in the gaming world in the last decade is/was Atari. You see, they're gone now.. and as one learned observer said "without so much as a whimper". Atari's inept leadership (the Tramiels) squandered opportunity after opportunity with superb and highly marketable products because they seemingly expected the world to beat a path to their door. They avoided advertising like it was a plague, fought like cats and dogs with their developers and demanded gouge-like fees for third party participation in "their" Jaguar platform. Well, the end result is fairly obvious now. the Jaguar is all but dead and the Tramiels are in fat cat lala land. Why am I bringing all this heartache up? Simple. there is ANOTHER so called Game Console Industry Leader doing just about the very same things. In fact, I get a creepy feeling of DeJaVu when thinking of the uncanny similarities. Of course, I am speaking of the Mighty Nintendo with their 64bit "bone crusher" N64 Gaming Console. This sucker is HOT on the heels of the 64bit Atari Jaguar. headed straight for oblivion. As for market penetration. Sony is staring at well over nine million sold to consumers and the end is nowhere in sight. The only "close" contender is the N64 with its three or four hundred thousand units sold. One must ask one's self the "big" question as a developer of games would. Which machine would sell more copies of my game? The answer is fairly obvious. So where do you think the larger variety of new games will appear? If I were asked my recommendation for this Christmas, even if Nintendo were to load the US market with three quarters of a million machines and perhaps six more games for the day after Thanksgiving's sales push, as far as which Game Machine to purchase is concerned it would be the SONY PlayStation. Atari shot themselves in the foot with their CD-ROM for the Jaguar it was far too late, too little and too expensive! Nintendo could've incorporated a CD-ROM in their package. They did not. Instead, they've opted for an expensive proprietary disk drive to be made available "sometime" in the future. They have made the N64 a cartridge based machine and have, as industry analysts indicate, taken a serious loss on the few games they've released with a sixty dollar or so price tag. You can expect the future releases on cart to approach one hundred dollars and possibly, a short while thereafter, exceed that amount easily. Perhaps, Nintendo "imported" the head Whigs from Atari? Nah. nobody's that far into the ether. But then. please take a good look at what's going on!! If the N64 isn't in hot pursuit of the Jaguar's fate, shot for shot, then its a surprisingly close second. Why hasn't Nintendo learned from Atari's Tramiel blunders? Do we have to see a repeat of the very same levels of marketing and promotion genius? God help the Gaming Industry in general if this is the case. Solid competition is healthy. Will Sony have any real competition at all? As for SEGA, according to all the indicators (where is Ted Hoff?? . at SEGA!) and our own information, Sega will go "software only" in the very near future. (Sega Interactive?) Nintendo seems to be choking on their "nifty" N64 lean marketing techniques. Meanwhile, Sony is cruisin' to new heights in both software and hardware. The bottom line is as it has been for decades; "he who has plenty of product on the shelves for Christmas (from mid-October on..) pulls his annual report out of the doldrums". Miss the Christmas sales season and you've literally "missed the boat"! What could the "brains" at Nintendo be thinking of?? (A last minute MIRACLE?) After their Virtual Boy disaster, you'd think they'd push for a successful Christmas. But no. they appear to be waiting for the world to beat a path to their door.. someone ought to tell `em.. it simply ain't gonna happen. In this reporter's opinion, Nintendo's N64 is now almost in the same leaky boat as the Jaguar 64 was before its demise. (The "infamous" STR Crystal Ball wasn't needed for this folks. its as plain as day!) Special Notice!! STR Infofile File format Requirements for Articles File Format for STReport All articles submitted to STReport for publication must be sent in the following format. Please use the format requested. Any files received that do not conform will not be used. The article must be in an importable word processor format for Word 7.0.. The margins are .05" left and 1.0" Monospaced fonts are not to be used. Please use proportional fonting only and at eleven points. z No Indenting on any paragraphs!! z No Indenting of any lines or "special gimmickery" z No underlining! z Columns shall be achieved through the use of tabs only. Or, column format in Word 6-7 Do NOT use the space bar. z No ASCII "ART"!! z There is no limits as to size, articles may be split into two if lengthy z Actual Artwork should be in GIF, PCX, JPG, TIF, BMP, WMF file formats z Artwork (pictures, graphs, charts, etc.)should be sent along with the article separately z Please use a single font only in an article. TTF CG Times 12pt. is preferred. (VERY Strong Hint) If there are any questions please use either E-Mail or call. On another note. the ASCII version of STReport is fast approaching the "end of the line" As the major Online Services move away from ASCII.. So shall STReport. All in the name of progress and improved readability. The amount of reader mail expressing a preference for our Adobe PDF enhanced issue is running approximately 15 to 1 over the ASCII edition. Besides, STReport will not be caught in the old, worn out "downward compatibility dodge" we must move forward. However, if the ASCII readership remains as high, rest assured. ASCII will stay. Right now, since STReport is offered on a number of closed major corporate networks as "required" Monday Morning reading.. Our ascii readers have nothing to worry themselves about. Many grateful thanks in advance for your enthusiastic co-operation and input. Ralph F. Mariano, Editor STReport International Online Magazine Kids Computing Corner Frank Sereno, Editor The Kids' Computing Corner Computer news and software reviews from a parent's point of view Blinky Bill's Ghost Cave Dual-format CD-ROM approximate price $30 for ages 3 and up by Forest Interactive Published by DreamCatcher Interactive, Inc. 416-638-5000 Program Requirements IBM Macintosh OS: Windows 3.1, Windows 95 OS: System 7.1 CPU: 486DX2/66 CPU: 68040/25 HD Space: 0 HD Space: ? Memory: 8 MB Memory: 8 MB Graphics: 640 by 480 with 256 colors Graphics: 640 by 480 with 256 colors CD-ROM: Double-speed CD-ROM: Double-speed Audio: 8-bit Windows compatible sound card Other: mouse reviewed by Frank Sereno The carefree capers of the cute and cuddly koala Blinky Bill are the basis of a new interactive storybook, Blinky Bill's Ghost Cave. One of Australia's favorite characters is now available for fun and learning on computers the world over via this multimedia CD-ROM. The program features bouncy music, humor and games. The program consists of the storybook, several games and a slideshow presentation on Australian fauna. The host for this assortment of activities is the friendly, yet reserved Mr. Wombat. In the storybook, children can increase their reading comprehension and vocabulary while the program reads the story to them. A play option permits children to find hotspots that will trigger delightful animations. Mr. Wombat will pronounce individual words when you click on them. If you choose the re-read option, the program highlights the words as it reads them. The program has three types of games. First, it has a puzzle game. You choose a character and then it falls to pieces. You must rebuild the character using an outline as a guide to place the pieces. A second game is the painting game. The program presents a colorful background that has movable scenery. You then choose a character to paint. Simply select the color with the paintbrush and then click on the part of the character you wish to be that color. You can further customize your artwork by dragging and dropping props into the picture. The final set of games is memory games. If you paid attention to the story, you can answer the questions the program asks. The story itself is cute and funny. Blinky and his gang try to help the Rabbit family find a new home because their current one is too small. They find a cave that is more than large enough. There is only one problem! The cave is rumored to be haunted. Blinky and his friends help the Rabbits move. Once they leave, some "ghosts" scare away the Rabbit clan. Blinky goes back to the cave and discovers that a family of dingoes had posed as ghosts to steal the Rabbit's belongings. He schemes with the gang to chase away the dingoes with some ghosts of his own. The dingoes are frightened into leaving the cave and the Rabbits return to live happily ever after. The graphics in this program are delightful. The illustrations are very colorful and the characters are well-drawn and undeniably cute. The animation may be a bit choppy on a 486 computer, but it is very smooth on a Pentium system. Running the storybook in read mode is akin to watching an excellently animated cartoon. The program uses an enchanting musical track. Professional voice characterizations complement the appealing graphics. Some characters may be difficult to understand on first listen due to the characters' accents, but your children will quickly learn to understand them. Blinky Bill's Ghost Cave offers a good variety of activities and learning content. Children will be enchanted by these adorable characters so they will spend more time with the program. The interface is very straight- forward and audible help is always a mouse click away. The program supports the autoplay feature of Windows 95. The program does have a few areas that could use improvement. In the slideshow, Blinky seemed to delight in making fun of the characters on the screen. This is not desirable behavior and Blinky would seem to be encouraging it. The program doesn't permit printing. This would be a wonderful option to add to the painting game. In the storybook, I think the words should be highlighted during the first reading. Several memory games require that the player be able to read. That makes these activities very difficult for children ages six and less. However, this does have the benefit of getting parents or older siblings to help prereaders with these activities. The program has a warranty against defective media but it has no satisfaction guarantee. Be sure to check the return policies of your software vendor. Overall, Blinky Bill's Ghost Cave is a solid program that is sure to entertain and enlighten most youngsters. Parents will find this to be a nice addition to the home software collection. This program is an excellent chance for children to get a bit of exposure to Australian culture. Parents' one problem may be that their children will ask for stuffed versions of these cuddly characters. Is anyone importing Blinky Bill dolls? Gaming & Entertainment Section with Atari User Support Editor Dana P. Jacobson >From the Atari Editor's Desk "Saying it like it is!" Brrrr!! It seems that winter is rearing its cold and ugly head a little early. And what about those poor folks in the Great Lakes area?! Ouch! Anyone know the going rates for a winter stay in Tahiti? Pretty much the same 'ol stuff happening in the Atari computing arena this past week. Atari Computing magazine clarifies some information recently released; apparently the first issue sold out rather quickly. Also, the folks at Gribnif Software have been busy and there's a new Geneva update file available online, according to Dan Wilga (see below). Barring any problems due to Murphy's Law, we looking forward to adding a "new" regular column in this section of STReport, starting next week. An old face will be returning to the online pages with one of the most popular and informative columns that I can remember. I won't "jinx" the debut by naming names and adding to the pressure; you'll be pleasantly surprised, and rewarded, by your patience. Stay tuned! Until next time... Geneva 005 Patch now available From: Dan Wilga (Gribnif Software) After much procrasti ...er... "beta testing", the new version of Geneva, release 005, is now available in the form of a downloadable patch program. Both it and a new demo version of Geneva can be obtained from our Web site: http://www.pair.com/gribnif/ After you have completed the patch, be sure to check out the new version of GenevaRun, a shareware program launcher, and also the demo of the Geneva Macro Editor 2.0. These files are written to your Extras disk. The Macro Editor is a nifty companion to Geneva which allows you to easily create and edit macros to automate typing, mouse movement, and more. New in this version is the ability to type date and time strings, as well as to put up user-defined messages. Macros can now also be started automatically at certain dates/times, and even repeated periodically. Please note that this Geneva 005 patch works only with English language versions. Patches for other languages will become available in the coming weeks. Dan Wilga Tel: (413) 532-2434 Gribnif Software Fax: (413) 532-2540 PO Box 779 email: email@example.com Northampton, MA 01061-0779 ATARI COMPUTING MAGAZINE PRESS RELEASE - 6 NOVEMBER - MJK Just to clarify matters, here is an official statement from the subscriptions/distribution part of AC magazine: As many people know, issue 1 of AC sold out at the Atari shows in September. All people whose order/payment had been received by us before the show weekend either picked their copies up in person, or had them despatched to their home addresses early the following week. These people were guaranteed a copy, and they have now received them. Due to the overwhelming number of orders for issue 1 which we received after the show weekend, and were unable to meet, we decided to do a reprint. This reprint was not economically good for us, but we knew the disappointment that would be caused if many people didn't get a copy of issue 1. Hence our decision to reprint. Unfortunately the printers were not able to do the reprint immediately, and it was only recently that we received the reprint of issue 1. Since then we have had to process a further 300 names and addresses and payments (many of which were unfortunately incorrect due to confusing/unchecked info published by other organizations). However, the good news is that the vast majority of the reprint has now been despatched. The final 75 or so will be sent out shortly. All people who's order was received by us at either the Troon or the Sheffield address by last weekend will be guaranteed a copy from the reprint. However, we have now, effectively, sold out of issue 1. Any orders received on or since Monday 4 November will have their subscriptions, or requests for evaluation copies, started/met with issue 2, which is due out in early December. Contacts: In an effort to streamline our operations, all future email and snail mail General Enquiries should be addressed to the following points: E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or NeST:90:email@example.com Snail-mail: Atari Computing "Rois Bheinn" Overton Crescent Johnstone PA5 8JB Please enclose an SAE for reply. IRC if enquiring from outside UK. Telephone: Unfortunately we have had to withdraw our telephone enquiry service due to the large number of calls, many at very unsociable hours (!), from people who thought we were operating a general Atari helpline, rather than being there to answer queries on the magazine. This helpline is now closed, and callers will simply hear a recorded message to that effect. Therefore all future enquiries about any matter concerning Atari Computing MUST be made in writing either via email or by snail mail. And send to the above points. Subscription Payments: These payments should still be made to the address published on subscription forms, which are available via email or snailmail About the magazine: In case anyone is not sure about the status of Atari Computing, it is an enthusiasts' magazine compiled and distributed by Atari enthusiasts. Unfortunately, we don't have the resources of a 'full-time' publishing company, so all our efforts must be directed to getting the magazine out every two months, rather than try to run an Atari 'helpline'. Our apologies for the delay in sending out the reprint copies, but there's only a very small group of volunteers doing the work in their spare time, and we've been a victim of our own success! Who said the Atari scene was dead! ATARI COMPUTING - the new 60 PAGE printed magazine for all Atari users NEWS - GOSSIP - FEATURES - REVIEWS - HUMOUR - HOW TO DO IT - Q&A email for subscription details and further information to e- mail:firstname.lastname@example.org or NeST:90:email@example.com Richard Spowart firstname.lastname@example.org Newsbytes NewsReel - 12 Years Ago This Week MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA, U.S.A., 1996 NOV 13 (Newsbytes) -- By Nick Gorski. Twelve years ago, these Newsbytes stories were filed: Breakthrough From Digital; Apple Attack; AT&T Muscles; and PacTel Are Us. In These stories were taken from the extensive archives at the Newsbytes Website at http://www.newsbytes.com Breakthrough From Digital It was code-named "Crystal" when IBM was developing a similar project dubbed "Glass." Now it's been released under the title "GEM," which stands for Graphics Environment Manager. The software essentially gives IBM computers, the AT&T personal computer, Tandy 2000, TI Professional, and IBM-compatibles equipped with a mouse, qualities that, until now, have only been found in Apple's Macintosh. We're talking about pull-down menus and with icon-guided commands. DRI has gotten the jump on IBM, which won't have its own TopView (code-named Glass) software environment ready until next year. What does all this mean for Apple? It can't be very good. Maybe that's why Apple is making an unprecedented push to sell as many Macintosh computers as it can by year's end. Speculation has it that GEM is wrapped around Jack Tramiel of Atari's finger, for use in the new Mac-alike. Entertainment Section Jaguar Games Still Waiting! Tom Clancy & Games? PSX, Sega New Games Galore! And more... >From the Editor's Controller - Playin' it like it is! I'm still a single game console owner, with a Jaguar. However, if I were to consider adding to my console gaming hardware, there's plenty to choose from these days. I have to admit that with all of the online time and "research" to keep abreast of what's available and what's coming, I'd be inclined to go with the PlayStation as my next choice of hardware. There's a TON of stuff out there; and a lot of the games that are hitting the streets sound terrific. Sony appears to be doing everything right. I keep hearing how Nintendo is going to blow past Sony, with the N64 machine. Sorry folks, but Nintendo appears to be moving 20 steps backwards and "adopting" some of Atari's business principles one of which seems to be: "Build It And They Will Come!" It's been fortunate for Nintendo that their reputation has managed to help them so far, but with limited quantities of hardware, PLUS the lack of games, one can only wonder. I really believe that Nintendo is going to be playing second fiddle to Sony, and not catch up (at least for quite some time). Until next time... Industry News STR Game Console NewsFile - The Latest Gaming News! 2 Xtreme Debuts for PlayStation Game Console FOSTER CITY, CALIF. (Nov. 8) BUSINESS WIRE -Nov. 8, 1996--Sony Computer Entertainment America today unleashed 2 Xtreme, available exclusively on the PlayStation game console. 2 Xtreme captures the intense challenge of popular extreme sports and allows game players to race, compete and interact in 3D-rendered landscapes. 2 Xtreme has 12 tracks, each with its own challenges and obstacles, where players can choose to race a mountain bike through Africa, inline skate in Las Vegas, rumble through Los Angeles on skateboards and shred the mountain ranges of Japan on the all-new snowboard course. "Our previous extreme sports title was a huge success because we captured the personality of each of the extreme sports and plugged game players into a fast-paced and challenging game," said Peter Dille, senior director, product marketing, Sony Computer Entertainment America. "2 Xtreme builds on its predecessors' success by adding new environments with interactive elements and all -ew special moves. Plus, the new snowboarding tracks have been a huge hit with our focus groups." Each of the four locations in 2 Xtreme has three unique courses that grow in difficulty. To overcome the challenges of each race, players can collect health, strength, jumping and speed burst "power-ups." Players must balance extreme speed with the occasional round of "fisticuffs" as opponents attempt to knock each other down. The point system and power-ups add a whole new dimension. Players can earn points based on their finishing position, number of knock-downs, gates cleared and the amount of tricks successfully executed. The combination of these elements not only adds to the competitive challenge but also adds a lot of replay value. "2 Xtreme takes game play to new heights in the extreme series," said Dille. "The locations are much bigger and have increasing levels of difficulty; equipment has been outfitted with more special moves; and gameplayers can now compete with some of the hottest gear in exotic locations." Twisted Metal 2 Explodes On To Retail Shelves FOSTER CITY, CALIF. (Nov. 8) BUSINESS WIRE -Nov. 8, 1996--Sony Computer Entertainment America released today Twisted Metal 2, the sequel to the highly successful and award-winning original video game. This much- anticipated sequel is available only for the PlayStation game console. Twisted Metal 2 is a high-action, car-to-car combat game that puts players in control of heavily armed vehicles. Gameplayers hunt down their opponents through incredibly rendered, 3D environments. There are no pre-set tracks, allowing gameplayers to comb through city streets, interact with elements in the environments -- including blowing up world landmarks -- and do whatever it takes to defeat the competition. "Twisted Metal 2 builds on the elements found in the original game and really plays up the interaction within the environments," said Peter Dille, senior director, product marketing, Sony Computer Entertainment America. "Players can now enjoy the deep gameplay improvements, most notably in level design, character design and combo attacks. Every feature was added to increase the excitement of this 3D car combat game." Twisted Metal 2's new features include eight new battlegrounds; 12 new cars; deeper, more "wicked" gameplay; and, a host of new weapons, including ricochet bombs, remote controlled detonating bombs, napalm bursts and multiple missile attacks. Also, a new interface has been created that makes the many new combos faster to execute. Twisted Metal 2, a collaborative effort between Sony Interactive Studios America and SingleTrac Entertainment Technologies, Inc., starts off following the devastation and ruin from the original Twisted Metal. Calypso and his merry group of marauders felt that the original site for their competition was too small and decided to take their contest global. As the automotive death match goes worldwide, gameplayers will inflict destruction in bigger, more interactive locations such as New York, Paris, Moscow, Hong Kong and the shifting ice Antarctica. Some of the locations also include famous landmarks that are prime targets. In addition to favorite vehicles such as the Ice Cream Truck, Dune Buggy and Cop Car, there are several new supped-up contenders: a hearse; a bulldozer with a menacing front loader; a race car; and, an armed man strapped to two giant wheels, affectionately nicknamed "Axel." Videogame Industry's First True 3D Fighter FOSTER CITY, CALIF. (Nov. 8) BUSINESS WIRE -Nov. 8, 1996--Further asserting dominance in the next-generation videogame industry for its breadth and depth of software titles, Sony Computer Entertainment America has teamed up with Squaresoft to introduce a true 3D fighting game, Tobal No. 1, available exclusively for the PlayStation game console. While Square is well known for its best-selling and ground-breaking role- playing games (RPGs), Tobal No. 1 marks the company's first venture into the "fighting" arena. Dream Factory, the top-rated development team, and world renowned anime artist, Akira Toriyama (creator of Dragon Ball Z and Chrono Trigger) were brought together to bring Tobal No. 1 to life. Featuring a Battle System with full 360 degree movement, Tobal No. 1 allows gamers to have absolute control within a 3D environment, offering a full range of motions and the ability to attack your opponents from all angles. All character movements utilize fully, motion-captured animation running at a solid 60 frames-per-second, resulting in fluid gameplay with incredibly realistic controls and profound speed. "Having Squaresoft bring their development expertise to the PlayStation certainly validates our position within the industry," said Peter Dille, senior director, product marketing, Sony Computer Entertainment America. "The combination of Tobal No. 1 packed with a Final Fantasy VII interactive sampler disc will be a tremendously compelling product and a huge success." The game is set on the planet Tobal in the year 2048, where agile humans and monstrous alien life forms gather together in a winner-takes-all fighting competition sponsored and judged by the King. Fighters compete in an arena where brute strength is pitted against savage skills -- all looking to become the greatest fighter in the universe. Tobal No. 1 features a complex and very unique Grappling Technique which gives a whole new meaning to hand-to-hand combat. Instead of the standard grab and throw technique used in other fighters, gamers can hold onto their opponents and deliver head-butts, knee bashes or toss their opponents aside. There are eight characters to choose from, three bosses and three different modes of play: Tournament Mode, Vs. (the computer) mode and a Quest Mode. "The new Quest Mode takes Tobal No. 1 beyond the traditional platform fighting games," added Dille. "This innovative and original feature plays like a fighting RPG and opens hidden areas and characters for a whole new challenge. It allows gamers to move through five dungeon-like mazes, battling enemies designed specifically for this mode and in full fighting- game style. This innovative, never-attempted feature places Tobal No. 1 in a genre all of its own." Squaresoft Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Square Co. Ltd., in Japan, is headquartered in Costa Mesa, Calif. A high quality RPG game developer and publisher in North America since 1989, Square is currently developing multiple titles for the PlayStation game console. Jet Moto Races to Stores Across The Nation FOSTER CITY, CALIF. (Nov. 8) BUSINESS WIRE -Nov. 8, 1996--Sony Computer Entertainment America announced that it has released Jet Moto, available exclusively for the PlayStation game console. Jet Moto is a unique racing game that incorporates real racing physics with a variety of highly realistic 3D environments in a fast paced, high action racing game. Jet Moto puts gameplayers in control of a next generation motocross bike. The jet powered bike hovers just above the ground and is able to ride over multiple surfaces; water, snow and land. The races take place in huge, highly interactive 3D environments where gameplayers are encouraged to choose their own way through vicious topographies. "The TruePhysics element of Jet Moto is unbelievable," said Peter Dille, senior director, product marketing, Sony Computer Entertainment America. "The control is so realistic you find yourself leaning into turns and stomaching 200 foot jumps." In most racing games, the track is something the gameplayer must race through, whereas with Jet Moto, the environment in which you race is the track, complete with obstacles such as broken freeways, tree stumps and switch-backs that the gameplayers can ride through, over or jump. Jet Moto has 10 courses that incorporate a wide variety of terrains -- from muddy, tree-filled swamps of the backwater to the choppy waves, volcanic rock and sandy beaches of a tropical island paradise. The bikes are equipped with a magnetic grappling hook that gameplayers can use to negotiate tight turns. Designed for one or two players, gameplayers can choose between a vertical and horizontal, split- screen. Jet Moto is the latest collaborative effort between Sony Interactive Studios America and SingleTrac Entertainment Technologies, Inc. Previous titles include Twisted Metal, WarHawk, and the just released Twisted Metal 2. Get Ready To Rumble In The 23rd Century! SAN JOSE, CALIF. (Nov. 11) BUSINESS WIRE -Nov. 11, 1996--Accolade is leaping into the 23rd century with today's release of Pitball for the Sony PlayStation game console, a new multiplayer cyber-sport competition set in the future. Twelve alien races from 12 planets square off in this new contact sport where players shoot powerful Orbs to score goals. Players can earn points through competition, sponsorship or bribes, allowing them to buy new equipment and power-ups. Players compete in unique arenas throughout the universe, each with varied gravity, weather conditions and power-ups. In keeping with Accolade's multiplayer strategy, Pitball is playable with up to four players using Sony's Multi Tap. Four players can play at a time, taking on opponents with special moves, fighting attacks and death moves. Pitball also offers full season league play for single game play. The legendary Michael Buffer, known for calling out "GET READY TO RUMBLE" at professional boxing tournaments, provides the voice-over to each match. "Pitball stands alone as one of the most unique games available on the market, offering the best multiplayer 3D action on the PlayStation," said Jim Barnett, CEO of Accolade. Pitball will be available this week for the Sony PlayStation game console at an estimated street price of $49.95. Zany Racing Game Takes Whole Family on a Wild Ride FOSTER CITY, CALIF. (Nov. 8) BUSINESS WIRE -Nov. 8, 1996--Sony Computer Entertainment America launches a cartoon racing game -- Motor Toon Grand Prix(TM) -- that appeals to people of all ages. Set in a magical 'toon world, this fun and non-violent racing game available exclusively for the PlayStation(TM) game console -- allows players to race through an animated world. "The brilliantly designed and playful graphics of Motor Toon Grand Prix makes the game perfect for the whole family," said Peter Dille, senior director, product marketing, Sony Computer Entertainment America. "Game enthusiasts and industry publications have touted 'Motor Toon' as one of the best racing games on the market and, at the same time, it's a great game for any family with older and younger kids." Motor Toon Grand Prix puts the player in the driver's seat of a wild and zany racing game with a choice of eight different characters and their vehicles. Race through the magical 'toon land filled with 10 topsy-turvy courses including Toon Village, Toon Island II, Crazy Coaster and the Haunted Castle. Motor Toon Grand Prix offers fun and playful action in a cartoon-style racing game. Featuring stunningly colorful animation, the player battles opponents with loads of wacky weapons including fire balls, bombs, dynamite, 32-ton weights, missiles and even crazy mushrooms. During the course of the race, players acquire coins found throughout each track and exchange them for these weapons randomly selected for the player. Additionally, gamers can grab onto oil cans, wonder clocks, magic hands, power shields and power ups to gain a host of strategic moves to propel you to the finish line. The amount of gameplay in Motor Toon Grand Prix is nearly limitless with the option of selecting various difficulty settings; easy, normal, hard, professional and expert. For an added bonus, Motor Toon Grand Prix has three completely hidden games and is Link Cable-compatible, allowing players to enjoy a heated one-on-one battle. Tom Clancy Forms Games Company Red Storm Entertainment Inc. is the name of a new company formed by author Tom Clancy to develop and market interactive computer games, with the online market in mind. The Wall Street Journal reports this morning Clancy will own half of Red Storm -- named after one of his best-selling novels, "Red Storm Rising" -with Virtus Corp., a Cary, North Carolina, developer of tools for creating computer products, being co-owner. The paper says Clancy will be chairman and Doug Littlejohns, a former commodore in the British navy and adviser on "Red Storm Rising," will be president/CEO. "The first Red Storm games are to be released next year," says the Journal. "They will emphasize strategy rather than shoot-em-up skills." Acclaim Entertainment releases Iron Man/X-O Manowar GLEN COVE, N.Y. (Nov. 14) BUSINESS WIRE -November 14, 1996--- Marvel and Acclaim Heroes Clash in First-Ever Video Game-Comic Book Crossover Acclaim Entertainment, Inc. (NASDAQ:AKLM), a leading worldwide interactive entertainment company, today announced the release of its Iron Man/X-O Manowar In Heavy Metal video game, available now on the Sega Saturn(TM), Nintendo Game Boy(R) and Sega Game Gear(TM) platforms with the PC CD-ROM and Sony PlayStation(TM) versions available for the holiday season. The title, featuring Marvel Comics' Iron Man and Acclaim Comics' X-O Manowar, marks the first time that a comic book crossover, or clash between two icons from different companies, has been brought to the interactive entertainment marketplace. "Iron Man/X-O Manowar In Heavy Metal sets the pace for next-generation gaming," said Steven Lux, Acclaim vice president of marketing. "Not only is it the first video game to feature a crossover from two comic book universes, it's also the interactive debut of Acclaim Comics' characters. This breakthrough storyline, combined with our proprietary motion capture technology and graphics, ensures the games appeal to both video game fans and comic book fans alike." "Iron Man/X-O Manowar in Heavy Metal is yet another excellent game in a long line of Acclaim/Marvel products," said Justin McCormack, executive vice president, consumer products of Marvel Characters, Inc. "This will be an instant hit with comic fans and gamers alike!" Head-to-Head Heavy Metal Action Starring Marvel Comics' Iron Man and Acclaim Comics' X-O Manowar, the video game features Acclaim's advanced motion capture technology, SGI 3-D rendered graphics and more than 30 action-packed stages of game play. In Acclaim's Iron Man/X-O Manowar In Heavy Metal, gamers assume the role of either Iron Man or X-O Manowar as they battle against the evil forces of the Marvel and Acclaim comic book Super-Villains, including Baron Zemo and Mistress Crescendo, who have joined forces to resurrect the most powerful object ever created - the Cosmic Cube. Acclaim's Iron Man/X-O Manowar In Heavy Metal offers an exciting array of game play features, including: z Appearances by Marvel Comics' masters of evil featuring: Yellow Jacket, Absorbing , Melter, Titania, Goliath, Mr. Hyde, Arnim Zola, Blackout and Baron Zemo; as well as Acclaim Comics' Mistress Cresendo, Crescendo's Vizier, General Krytos, Dromak Gladiator, Armorines and Spider Aliens; z Realistic character movements as a result of Acclaim's advanced motion capture technology; z Object scaling and rotation techniques, yielding incredibly realistic visual depth; - Variable lighting effects, which set the tone for each battle sequence; z Iron Man and X-O Manowar trademark weapons and powers; z Action-packed fighting, shooting and flying game play; z Intuitive game controls that provide reactive player involvement; z Artificial intelligence that increases the level of difficulty as the game progresses, providing the ultimate game play challenge. In addition, Acclaim Comics and Marvel Comics each published an Iron Man/X-O Manowar comic book, which proved to be immediate sellouts and included numerous game play hints and tips. Fabian Nicieza, Acclaim Comics editor-in- chief, wrote both books to ensure a high-quality, consistent storyline. Iron Man/X-O Manowar requires a 486 DX2/66 MHZ PC, 8MB of RAM, 2MB Hard Disc space, double speed CD-ROM drive, 1MB VESA-compatible SVGA graphics card, game pad, and a recommended 100% Sound Blaster compatible sound card. Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc. (NYSE:MRV) is a diversified entertainment company with an extensive library of internationally celebrated properties, including Spider-Man, X-Men, and the Incredible Hulk. Other operations of Marvel include Fleer/Skybox, leading marketers of sports and entertainment trading cards; Panini, marketers of children's activity stickers; and Toy Biz, an innovative toy producer. The No. 1 comic book company in the world. Marvel has attracted licensees in categories ranging from toys, games and sporting goods to apparel, home products and interactive media. Spider-Man and the X-Men are stars of their own top-rated television shows on Fox Children's Network, and the Incredible Hulk animated series premiered this fall on UPN. IRON MAN and all other Marvel characters:(TM) & (C)1996 Marvel Characters, Inc. All rights reserved. Acclaim Entertainment, Inc., a leading worldwide publisher of software for Nintendo, Sega, Sony and personal computer and CD-ROM hardware systems, also publishes comic books under a variety of imprints. In addition, Acclaim develops coin-operated arcade and ticket-redemption games; operates motion capture studios; and, through A.D.I., globally sells and distributes products from a variety of entertainment software publishers including Ocean, Interplay, Marvel, Pulse Entertainment and Take 2. Acclaim also has a joint venture with Tele-Communications, Inc. for electronically distributed interactive entertainment. Visit Acclaim's web site at http://www.acclaimnation.com. She's Tough, She's Sexy, She's Lara Croft in Tomb Raider SAN FRANCISCO (Nov. 14) BUSINESS WIRE -Nov. 14, 1996--Eidos Interactive, a developer and publisher of entertainment software for the PC, Macintosh, and console platforms, announced today the much anticipated simultaneous release of Tomb Raider for the PC CD-ROM, Sony PlayStation, and Sega Saturn. Tomb Raider is a state-of-the-art, third person perspective action-adventure game that takes place in a series of massive real-time 3D environments. Within the realm of Tomb Raider, the gamer enters the mysterious and action- packed world of the infamous adventurer, Lara Croft, who sets out on a quest that will lead her from the Incan ruins of Peru to the Egyptian pyramids and beyond. It combines puzzle, action, and adventure game elements within 15 massive 3D levels accompanied by visually stunning, action-packed FMV sequences that provide valuable clues and information about the adventures that lie ahead. According to Mike McGarvey, President and CEO of Eidos Interactive, Tomb Raider and the Lara Croft franchises could play an important role in the future of Eidos Interactive. "A unique idea, a great 3D gaming engine, and a strong character combine to make what some in the gaming industry are touting as the game of the year," added McGarvey. To support this effort Eidos has launched a significant marketing campaign which includes TV and print advertisements. What makes Tomb Raider so special? Lara's character sprite contains over 2000 frames of animation allowing her to perform fluid and natural movements as she runs, jumps, climbs, swims, and flips her way through tunnels, ancient palaces and dungeons containing deadly traps and a barrage of deadly enemies. In addition, the true 3D environment and unique camera system create a gaming experience that lasts for hours. "We are very excited about the simultaneous launch of Tomb Raider. Our goal is to appeal to all gamers of all three systems by combining the best of gaming elements in one package," added McGarvey. Eidos Interactive develops and publishes interactive entertainment software for the PC, Sony PlayStation, Sega Saturn, Macintosh, and Internet. Eidos Interactive is part of the Eidos group of companies combining Eidos Technologies, a software-based video compression and decompression company, and Glassworks, a state-of-the-art post production facility specializing in digital effects. Jaguar Online STR InfoFile Online Users Growl & Purr! What's "Zot"?? Oddities Abound! Hi everyone.... I E-mailed this guy, and here's the response I got back. >Hey, >Read your posts on JagTalk. About this Zot game....Is it shareware? >How far along is it, and who is gonna publish it. I'm all for new Jag >games, and I hope this "Zot" comes out. What kinda game is this...what >kinda main-character....then I'll see if I could come up with some sort >of name. > >Laterz, > >Wes Powell >Jagu-Dome >http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Park/main-page.html REPLY: Well, ZOT looks like Pacman, but with boogerglasses (they're like sunglasses, only they are extremely reflective, but only on the outside, and they can focus energy, known as "BOOG" into a blast that blows apart creatures and machines) and he's got a chameleon-type tongue that can be aimed, extended, retracted, and flicked out to get it stuck on something. You can detach it with OPTION. Using his tongue, he can swing around, confine moving objects' paths to a circle by anchoring them, hitch rides on frisbees, and other cool stuff the player thinks up. In the multiverse ZOT lives in, the forces of normalcy and weirdness are threatening to overwhelm and destroy one another, and it's ZOT's job to set the balance right. Major imbalances caused by extremely huge and/or twisted things must be countered by either creation or destruction, player's choice. ZOT can eat any object his size and gain size with a special BOOST powerup. ZOT can also add these objects, some of which may be parts of creatures he blasted, onto himself, and these objects become body parts, which can be used with the numpad: 1: upper left arm/hand object 2: head gear 3: upper right arm/hand 4: middle left arm/hand 5: midsection 6: middle right arm/hand 7: left leg/foot 8: tail 9: right leg/foot Any properly sized object can be used in any slot (eyeballs for legs, hotdogs for headgear), and any objects can be used locomotively, player's choice(walk sequence example: head, foot, tail, head, foot, tail, etc, always in a counter-clockwise pattern using the selected parts, which can still use their special functions). Every object does something, and some whole creatures can be used. If ZOT gulped, but not ate (gulping gets it in your mouth, eating an object "destroys" it and gives you it's boog) a frisbee, it would be in his mouth and he could hover around like a flying saucer, and spit it out any time he wanted, maybe to knock a telephone off of the nail clipper springboard (everything in this game is strange, even in it's normalcy, becuase of the imbalance, which causes "wormholes" to appear in imbalanced locations). The entire game will be true 3-D, and I got it all down on paper, so I just need to get it in Wordperfect and send it to ATARI so they can have the coolest game on the coolest system. I can't make it myself, though, but I designed all the terrain (ice,snow, lava, water, bricks, dirt, steel, crystal, retro, etc.), some of the creatures (plabber, psychlops, choconids, wheelies, flashplungers, etc), some contraptions (catapult, nail clipper, rocket pod, etc), the controls, the gameplay, ummm, and the powerups (football, particle shield, cloak, etc) and lotsa other cool stuff, including the fact that it's a combo cart and CD game, to allow faster load times, more details in saved games, and more data. My brother helped me design the flashplungers and the kamikaze bunny troopers :) I also determined that cool explosions will combine to create a larger one instead of being seperate small ones side by side, which is kinda unrealistic, but they only combine during the first stage of an explosion, and not during the collapse, so they don't start fading, then go XTREMELY KABLOOEY! just watch out for flying pizzas, because they try to stuff your face with peppers and make you run around breathing fire everywhere, but only if you hit them will they divide into 8 seeker pieces. Well, I hope that's enough info for ya, and if anyone hears about the design I already submitted : Club Drive 2-High Impact, could they tell me? tanks, bye :) Bi Zarro, a.k.a Shokwave, signing out, with these words of wisdom: Don't give your thrustmaster a cowboy hat, or it might get ideas and drift. (no offense, cowboys :) Sounds like he's going to Atari to get this made....I'm afraid he's not going to have any luck doin' that....Maybe...just maybe Telegames, but they haven't even seen if they'll reach the numbers necessary to make a profit. I guess we'll see. Laterz, Wes Powell Jagu-Dome ONLINE WEEKLY STReport OnLine The wires are a hummin'! PEOPLE... ARE TALKING On CompuServe Compiled by Joe Mirando CIS ID: 73637,2262 Hidi ho friends and neighbors. Thanks to all of you who did not comment (all three of you) on last week's column, which contained commentary on David Brinkley's seemingly off-handed swipe at the president. It's not something I do often, but when it's something that I feel is important, I simply do it, and to hell with being 'proper'. And would you believe that I actually had to explain the last line in last week's column to about a dozen readers who didn't get it? Jeez, how old are these people anyway? Nevermind... I'm feeling old now. <grin> On the Atari front, it's slowing down again in the forums and it's getting harder to 'grub up' interesting stuff. If you ever feel the need to tell me (and other readers) about some facet of Atari computing that I've been neglecting, feel free to drop me a line at the above email address (it's email@example.com for all you internet users). Well, let's get on with what news and info there is. >From the Atari Forums on CompuServe "Big" Tom Edwards posts: "Just a quick couple of questions. I hope someone can help out. I've just bought 1040ST. It has the old 1986,1987 TOS. Is it possible to upgrade this to the Rainbow TOS that I have in my newer 520 ST? The other question is does FREEZE DRIED TERMINAL work with Compuserve. I've tried it on other BBS's and seems to work OK but just get garbage when dialing Compuserve. I'm probably being a bit daft asking these questions but any help would be much appreciated." Our own Atari/Entertainment editor, Dana Jacobson, tells Big Tom: "The 1040 is actually newer than the 520, but that won't make a difference. The answer to your Rainbow TOS question is yes, you can upgrade your 1040's TOS. Make sure you get the right "set" of ROM chips - some systems had a 6- chips set, and others a 2-chip set (I believe it was two). As to Freeze Dried, I believe it orks on CIS; you may have to alter your settings, however. Someone here should be able to clarify as I'm not a believer in Freeze Dried." Our friend and intellectual benefactor, Albert Dayes, adds: "You can upgrade to TOS 1.4 (rainbow TOS) it comes in both 2 chip and 6 chip sets. You have to open your 1040ST and see what type you have. I have not used Freeze Dried Terminal so I cannot really talk to much about it. Are you using the same terminal settings on the telecommunications program as your are on Compuserve? You might consider getting a different telecommunciatons program from the library like Storm and see how well that works. Of course there are also commercial programs like FLASH II v3.0x (a demo is in the library) and STALKER." Bill Anderson tells us that he's... "...been using Magic Mac on a Power Book. It makes a very nice Atari notebook computer!" Bernardo Kramb tells Phil to... "Have a look at http://www.komkon.org/~stiles/emulation/ .There are some links to pages in the internet." Phil tells Bernardo that he's... "BEEN THERE. The emulation available is staggering isn't it? I found the answer to my problem with the printer. The magic Mac will not work with a dedicated " mac" printer. (SUCKS!!) Oh, well, I needed to sell the DeskWriter anyway." Michel Vanhame tells Phil: "For what it's worth, I think it will if you buy NVDI for Magic Mac." P.Walding tells Phil: "If you get NVDI for Mac , you can use your Mac Localtalk printer for all GDOS and desktop type printing. It won't work for programs like Pagestream." Bernardo tells Phil: "I did not know what staggering means, but if you mean the demo of MagicMac now I know. About printing problems because of the printer type I could not think the problem is the printer type. Michel and P.Walding gave you a tip to that problem. I had never tried MagicMac besides the demo some days ago. I have a Mac and still my Atari, but I use only the Mac now. I thought it would be fine to use MagicMac, but the costs of it and NVDI 3.XX ( or is there a never one available ? ) are to high for me, I have changed completely to the Mac. The demo is really staggering, the restrictions are OK, but it seems to be the first beta version of MagicMac, although I haven't seen the newest version. ApplSys should release a demo of the newest version, restricted. After that test of the demo I would never buy that thing, even not for $5. I have enough problems with my Mac freezing with Mac-software, I daily have to do with an emulation ( 68k on PPC ) and I daily have that problem also with native PPC software ( not really, the system is a mix of PPC-code and 68k-code in emulation ). Magic Mac : no, thanks. It could be fine, but not with such a demo and not for that price." Alex Magdaleno asks: "Is there anyway I can use my phasar files on my IBM? I'm ready to give my 1040 ST to a cousin, but I have my house basis records on phasar in my Atari. Was phasar ever written for the IBM?" Lee Zion tells Alex: "I went through the same thing when I moved my household furnishings, book, record and "collectables" inventory (2500+ records) from the ST (Timeworks database program) to the IBM. I have not heard of a IBM Phasar program. But you don't need one. If Phasar has a file export function, it can probably create a comma (or any other unique character) delinated file that _almost_any_ IBM (Windows?) database or spreadsheet program can import. If Phasar is without an export function, you can always "print to ASCII file" (with a page length set longer than the number of lines in your database) to create a column based file with the records on separate lines. MS Excel, to name one Windows program, has a data parsing function that can separate record entrys based on user defined data field lengths. Just strip any headers and page breaks introduced by Phasar and let the IBM program parse the records into data fields. The second approach is the way I had to go to transfer my database from TimeWorks on the ST to MS Windows Excel since TimeWorks wouldn't export comma delinated files. The mechanics were easy. I formated a floppy on the IBM and then printed my database to an ASCII file on the disk using the ST. I opened the ASCII file in Excel and stripped the headers/footers/page breaks. Excel handled the data field parsing with very few (easily corrected) errors. If you are buying an IBM/Windows spreadsheet or database program, check its data import/parsing functions first! MS Works came bundled with my IBM clone computer and didn't seem to have any at all (except cut and paste from a text file)! I could't face breaking up 2500 line entry records into 8 data fields using "cut and paste". For a small database though even this approach would be "workable"." Richard Gersh asks: "Can I use my old ST monitor for anything else? I don't use the computer anymore, though I may set it up for my kids someday. In the meantime, can I use the color monitor in any other way, perhaps with some kind of adapter?" Dennis Bishop tells Richard: "It can be used with A Falcon030 and also with the right adapter with a JAG." Albert Dayes adds: "You can use it With an Atari Jaguar." Curt Vendel puts adds this bit of info: "If you call up TOAD computer in Baltimore, MD. They have adapters to allow you to use monitors on PC's and PC monitors on ST's. go WWW.TOAD.NET or WWW.TOADNET.COM for their web page." On the subject of re-living the 'frontier days' of computer gaming, Bob Cummins posts: "There are some collections of old 8-bit games that have been ported over to the PC, such as Frogger, and River Raid. They require a 486 or better to run, though. I believe they're sold under the Activision label." Clay Moore tells Bob: "That's true, but they aren't Star Raiders, even the ST couldn't do the 3d scaling like the 800, although the ST version was higher resolution, it just wasn't as good for playing. I would like to see an emulator do those things." Richard Catterall tells us that there is... "No news on what if anything Atari is doing within JTS. JTS however appears to be doing well. News indicates shipments of $30 million in their 3rd quarter and they state they expect them to double in their 4th quarter. They also announced a 2.0 gig drive that's available for desktops and distribution for most areas outside of US. New releases available on the Yahoo News site if you have an interest or on Silicon Investor site." Well folks, that's it for this week. Tune in again next week, same time, same station, and be ready to listen to what they are saying when... PEOPLE ARE TALKING EDITORIAL QUICKIES 13 Symptoms of Computer Addiction z During a 2 a.m. call to the bathroom you check your e-mail. z When your neighbor mentions taking a drive, you think not miles but megs. z When channel-surfing the infomercials, you grab the remote control and double-click. z Down at the local computer store they know your name and favorite chip. z Your favorite movies are Brainstorm, Tron, War Games, and, of course, 2001; your preferred Murder She Wrote episode is the one in which Jessical solves the case of the fatal disk error. z So many relatives and friends call you when they need help with their computers that you're considering installing a 900 number. z There's an ISDN line running into your home, and the notion of low baud rates reminds you of nursery schools and training wheels. z You have chronic lower back pain, knots in your shoulders, and a cramp in your mouse finger, and you can't see more than three feet in front of your face. z Your penmanship looks worse than it did in the fourth grade. z You call your PC "Cousin 'Puter". z You call your computer chair "The Seat of Power." z Never mind those old 5.25-inch floppies, you still have those hoary 8.5 inchers! z For that matter, you don't throw out bad floppies, you decorate them and use them as drink coasters. STReport International OnLine Magazine [S]ilicon [T]imes [R]eport http://WWW.STREPORT.COM AVAILABLE through OVER 200,000 PRIVATE BBS SYSTEMS WORLDWIDE 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" November 15, 1996 Since 1987 Copyrightc1996 All Rights Reserved Issue No. 1246
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