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Article #61 (214 is last):
From: xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Atari SIG)
Newsgroups: freenet.sci.comp.atari.product.8bit.zmag
Subject: Z*Magazine: 22-Jun-87 #58
Reply-To: xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Atari SIG)
Date: Fri Jul 16 10:21:14 1993


_____________________________________
ZMAGAZINE               JUNE 22, 1987
             ISSUE 58
_____________________________________
PUBLISHER/EDITOR-----> RON KOVACS

ASSISTANT PUBLISHER--> KEN KIRCHNER

80 COLUMN EDITOR +
ASSISTANT PUBLISHER--> SUSAN PERRY
_____________________________________
ZMAGAZINE OFFICIAL HEADQUARTERS:
40 The Syndicate: (201) 968-8148
80 The Gateway  : (609) 931-3014
_____________________________________
Xx ZMAG INDEX 58

-1- Publishers Page
-2- Zmag User Group of June (RIACE)
-3- Zmag Software Capsule Reviews
-4- FCC Proposal
-5- IBM Emulator Update
-6- Hardware Update
-7- ZMAG Newswire
-8- Online Magazine News
-9- Next Week in Zmagazine
_____________________________________
Xx PUBLISHERS PAGE

Welcome to another edition of Zmag.

I received news this week about the
current status of the ST Transformer.
ANALOG MAGAZINE is purchasing the
program and it will appear in the
August or September issue. Stay tuned
for details.....

You might have noticed in a few 
issues, spelling errors!!! Well the
errors are not because of my lack
of correct spelling.  If the system
you read ZMAG on is an Express BBS,
you will see the errors.

I failed to remove the SHIFT 6 
character from the issue. When you
read any issue online that contains
this, you will either find letters
missing or even strange things like
your name, numbers, etc...

In this and future editions that
character will be replaced by the
character (+). Sorry for any
inconvience.
_____________________________________
Xx ZMAG USER GROUP OF THE MONTH JUNE
.....Rhode Island Atari Computer
     Enthusiasts RI ACE.....
_____________________________________
You can become a member of RI ACE by
sending a check or money order to:

       RI ACE
       c/o Steve Dunphy
       192 Webster Ave.
       Cranston, R.I.

The dues are $20.00 yearly. 24 hr BBS
#  401-521-4234 in Prov. R.I.
_____________________________________
Xx ZMAG SOFTWARE REVIEWS
_____________________________________
By:James Delson

Battle of Antietam

Strategic Simulations, Inc.
1046 N. Rengstorff Ave.
Mountain View, CA 94043
(415) 964-1200

PRICE: $50

RATINGS:
Overall performance:  Excellent
Documentation:  Excellent
Play system:  Excellent
Graphics quality:  Good
Ease of use:  Difficult
Value for money:  Excellent

Although there have been only two
Civil War computer games in the past
four years (The Road to Gettysburg
and The Battle of Chickamauga), each
marked a significant innovation in
the field of strategy and tactics.
Now, the latest, Battle of Antietam,
follows its predecessors by taking
the war-game genre into fresh
territory.

A re-creation of the bloodiest day in
American military history, Antietam
equals the best from Chickamauga, and
more.  Antietam's added details are
abundant, with the ability to plot
and then take back moves, view
line-of-sight for all units, achieve
flanking fire in attack and defense,
and have routed units rally and
rejoin the battle.

Playtesters went wild over Antietam.
Over the course of several weeks, as
many as three games were going on at
once.  The key to the game's success
is its easy-to-use command-control
system.  Once you master the lengthy
but well-written rules, every hour
spent at the keyboard makes using the
refined play system closer to second
nature.  This allows full
concentration on the superb game.

You're offered three levels of play
and a host of options.  They include
one- or two-player modes, hidden
movement, and gradual activation of
the historically superior Union
forces to balance play.  More fine
details can be found, and the
computer opponents are challenging,
too.
_____________________________________
Borrowed Time for ATARI ST

Activision
2350 Bayshore Parkway
Mountain View, CA 94043
(415) 960-0410

PRICE: $30-$50

RATINGS:
Overall performance:  Good
Documentation:  Average
Play system:  Good
Graphics quality:  Excellent
Ease of use:  Difficult
Value for money:  Good

The city's a lonely place for a
private eye, especially when you've
got assorted torpedos out there
waiting for the chance to air
condition your skull.  But if your
job's solving crimes, the risks come
with the territory.

In this text/graphic detective tale,
your moniker's Sam Harlow.  From the
moment your tired tootsies first
appear on your desk, you're in for
more trouble than a cat in a dog
pound.  You've got seven cases open,
and if you're good, I mean real good,
you just might be able to solve 'em
all before some slug from a .45 buys
you the farm.

If you can solve all seven cases in
24 hours, you're the leading gumshoe
everyone thinks you are.  But one
false step and you're deader than
last week's meatloaf.  Try talking to
people, following leads all over
town. 

Collect evidence, no matter how
unimportant it might seem.  And soon
the pieces will fall together. You'll
need smarts to solve the mystery, and
there's plenty of action here, too,
so move fast, keep your eyes open,
and don't forget to use a map.
_____________________________________
Super Boulder Dash

Electronic Arts
1820 Gateway Drive
San Mateo, CA 94404
(415) 571-7171

PRICE: $15

RATINGS:
Overall performance:  Excellent
Documentation:  Good
Play system:  Excellent
Graphics quality:  Good
Ease of use:  Average
Value for money:  Excellent

Super Boulder Dash is the successor
to Boulder Dash--one of the first
(and still one of the best) strategy/
arcade games.  Both games are
joystick -operated, multi-screen
challenges of timing, hand-eye
coordination, and strategic planning.

Don't worry if you've never played
the original because, as a bonus,
it's included as side one of the
disk.  Novices are urged to complete
side one before trying the new
version, since the difficulty level
of even the easiest Super screen
requires an hour or more to crack.

Practice is essential.  Remember, in
this type of game there's always a
proper way to get through a screen.
Generally speaking it will involve
using elements which initially appear
dangerous or unsolvable.

We couldn't get some playtesters away
from the game, even for snacks.
Everyone agreed that Super Boulder
Dash is one of the best strategy/
arcade games for people at all levels
of play ability.
_____________________________________
Xx FCC PROPOSAL
_____________________________________
Phone-Access Fee Is Proposed For
Computers

FCC Would Make Firms Pay to Link
Networks To Local Phone Loops

By:Bob Davis
Staff Reporter of the Wall Street
Journal

WASHINGTON -- The FCC proposed a fee
that would steeply increase
telecommunications charges for many
business and residential computer
users.

Under the FCC proposal, companies
such as US Sprint Communications
Co.'s Telenet subsidiary and
McDonnell Douglas Corp.'s Tymnet unit
would be charged as much as $5 an
hour per user to hook up their
computer communication networks to
local telephone loops.  Currently,
computer networks are exempt from
these so-called access charges.  The
charges would almost certainly be
passed on to consumers and business
customers.

US Sprint is a joint venture of GTE
Corp., of Stamford, Conn., and United
Telecommunications Inc., Kansas City,
Mo.

Price increases would be a big blow
for millions of personal-computer
hobbyists who depend on computer
networks to communicate cheaply with
one another and to call up such
information services as H&R Block
Inc.'s CompuServe Inc.  Currently,
most consumers pay only a few dollars
an hour in telephone costs.

The proposal also would be a major
setback for Telenet an Tymnet, which
have attracted consumers and business
customers with discount computer
telecommunications rates.  These
companies rent private telephone
lines, which previously haven't been
subject to access charges, and spread
the costs among thousands of computer
users.

Rate increases "will dry up the
marketplace for new and innovative
computer services," said Joseph
Markosi, counsel for Adapso, a trade
association of computer service
companies.  "Prices will go through
the roof."

He added that the proposal would
improperly discriminate between
computer network companies and other
companies that maintain their own
data networks.  The later companies
apparently wouldn't be charged access
fees under the FCC proposal.  Clark
Woodford, a CompuServe executive vice
president, said any access charges
"will cause us to reassess our
pricing structure."

The FCC voted 4-0 to seek comment on
a plan to end the access-charge
exemption beginning Jan. 1, 1988. The
commissioners said the exemption
amounted to a subsidy for the
computer network companies that was
being paid by business and
residential telephone users.  "We
don't want the (telecommunications)
network to evolve in response to
various subsidies and anomalies,"
said FCC Charman Dennis Patrick.

Agency staffers and other said the
Jan. 1 date wasn't firm.  Page
Montgomery, vice president of
Economics & Technology Inc., a Boston
telecommunications company, urged the
agency to delay the decision for
perhaps a year until the local phone
companies change their networks to
give competitors equal connections.

Otherwise, the regional Bell
companies, which are trying to enter
the computerized-communications
field, would have a big advantage.
That's because the computer-service
companies would be burdened with
price increases and also wouldn't be
able to offer hook-ups to the local
telephone netowrk that are as good as
those offered by the phone companies.
"It would be a serious policy
mistake" to end the exemption Jan. 1,
1988, Mr. Montgomery said.

The FCC said that access charges
should decline over the next few
years, by about a dollar per hour, as
the agency increases residential
charges for connecting to the 
telephone network.  Much of the
revenue from these assessments is
used to reduce the access charges
paid by telecommunications companies.

The FCC proposal came as a surprise.
In March, the agency decided that
computer network companies should
remain deregulated, which industry
observers interpreted to mean that
rates wouldn't increase.  But now the
FCC said that only purely private
networks, operated by some big
companies for their internal
communications, would remain free of
access charges.

[Ed. See CompuServe's comment on this
     matter below.]
_____________________________________
Xx IBM EMULATOR UPDATE
....Courtesy CompuServes Atari16....
_____________________________________
#: 66890 S5/Business Users 16-Jun-87
Sb: Info on PC-Ditto
Fm: David and Sandy Small 76606,666
To: Pc-Ditters

I spent awhile on the phone with
Avant-Garde (like three hours)
talking about PC-Ditto, so I thought
I'd pass some info along, since
there's a lot of curiousity about it.

Jerry called me up from Comdex and
said it was amazingly good. He'd done
all the things like under the table
for a PC or inside for an 8088; it's
a software emulator, all right. Then,
he got a bunch of his own software to
test it on.. and lo and behold, it
worked. He ran LapLink and DesqView
on it, and while he says it's slow,
it does work. Apparently the
emulation is at the chip level.

The guy who did it is an ex-IBM'er
and sales type -- he was a pro
salesman, believe me -- who's working
on it with his wife. Mom and pop
shop, so to speak. They've had lots
of marketing offers and are very very
busy. Don't expect to get through on
the phone, it's always busy.

My own experience with emulators is
that you lose a 4X in clock speed
with necessary overhead. So I'd
expect about a 1-2 Mhz IBM out of
this. The good thing is that I/O is
done at 68000 speed, 8 Mhz, so it
will only appear slow when you get
computation-bound..like recalcing a
spreadsheet. Burt just copying files,
etc, it ought to scream along pretty
nicely.

The big thing that they told me was
they wanted everyone to know they
weren't connected at all with the
MS-EM people. Apparently they had
received mucho negative feedback on
that other product.

They've tested and certified it with
lots of different IBM products; they
went through a top-40 IBM product
list and it ran all that stuff. The
guy who's doing it sounds technically
competent and is a good salesman.

Caveat: this is all based on a
telephone conversation, but he does
know what he's doing with emulators,
and it's for real.

I'd suggest getting them online on
CIS a.s.a.p. to answer questions. It
sounds like it'll be a good product.

 -- Dave
_____________________________________
Xx HARDWARE UPDATE
_____________________________________
By:Ed Chop

Did you know that Atari made two 1050
drives?  The newer drives are Tandon
drives and the older drives are WST
(World Storage Technologies).  It
seems that the WST drives are quieter
and more reliable, but the belts are
more expensive.  The WST drives are
generally not marked as to
manufacturer, but they have NOVACON
motors.

What about these cheap SD drives you
see advertised in Computer Shopper
all the time? Can you use them on
your Atari?  Well....yes ....and no.
You can't use them without modifying
the drive or your computer.

By adding a microprocessor and
interface circuits to the drive you
could probably get it to work with
your Atari just like a 1050.  But an
easier way may be to take the
mechanical drive assembly from the
cheap drive and wire it to the 1050
electronics.  And why go through all
this trouble?  Because the cheap
drive that you want to buy should be
gear-driven.  They are MUCH quieter
and reliable.  According to Bob
Wooley, from the Compuserve Atari Sig
Community, the drive must be one that
draws less power than the original.
Bob says that you may burn up your
driver transistors, although he
hasn't tried it himself, yet.

Another way would be to add a PIO to
your computer.  That's a parallel I/O
aadapter.  Mmmmmmmm....sounds
interesting, huh? Well it seems our
friend Bob Wooley is working on such
a project.  The PIO board will plug
into the PIO port in the XL with a
24" cable.  The information for
building the PIO will be available on
the Atari Sig when he has it
completed.  By adding the proper
controller chip to the PIO, you can
run the new drive with your Atari.
But Bob has a better idea.  How about
a parallel 1050 drive that can load a
disk in 10 seconds?  Got your
attention, huh?  Well, he has an
interface card planned that will plug
into the PIO to run your 1050.  That,
too, will be available on the Atari
Sig.  We'll be looking forward to
that hardware project.

What's Atari doing to enhance their
drives?  Well, to start with, Bill
Wilkinson is working on a new DOS
called A-DOS.  Although originally
planned for the promised 3.5 inch
disk, now scrapped, A-DOS is being
designed for a new DD 5.25" drive
from Atari.
_____________________________________
Xx ZMAG NEWSWIRE
      ....June 15-June 19....
_____________________________________
COMMODORE SUES RATTIGAN

Online Today on CompuServe reported
that the turmoil at Commodore
continues. The firm has filed a
countersuit against Thomas J.
Rattigan, the company's former
president and chief executive
officer.

Rattigan left the company in April
after the board suspended him and
said it was considering dismissing
him. He immediately filed a lawsuit
against the company for $9 million in
damages, charging his employment
contract had been violated.

In the counterclaim, filed in US
District Court, Commodore said
Rattigan failed on several occasions
to carry out the decisions of the
company's board of directors and that
his actions had been costly to the
company. The Associated Press reports
that Commodore is seeking at least $5
million in compensatory damages and
as much as $13.7 million in punitive
damages.
_____________________________________
COMPUSERVE BLASTS FCC PROPOSAL

The following is the text of a
statement released June 15th by
CompuServe regarding the Federal
Communications Commission proposal to
lift the access charge exemption.

The Federal Communications Commission
proposed on June 10 to eliminate an
exemption from certain telephone
access charges for computer-based
services and information retrieval
systems.  The commission created the
exemption several years ago to allow
computer services to adjust to new
interstate access rules. The FCC
voted 4-0 to seek comment on a plan
to end the access charge exemption
by Jan. 1, 1988.

CompuServe opposes lifting the
exemption and will, as it has in the
past, work aggressively against any
proposal designed to increase the
cost of data network communications
for its customers.  The company will
actively petition the FCC and make
known its opposition to the proposal.
Further, CompuServe will encourage
its customers -- who will be most
deeply affected by any new access
charges --  to voice their opposition
to the proposal by writing a letter
to FCC Chairman Dennis Patrick and/or
their local Congressional
representatives.

While the FCC proposal will raise
costs for commercial customers of
CompuServe's network and information
services, it is the individual home
subscriber that could be most
affected by price hikes of 40 percent
or more. Such a  price increase could
effectively place online information
services out of the reach of many
Americans and squelch the growth of a
booming industry still in its
infancy.  Such consequences seem to
fly in the face of the original
intent of the access fee exemption:
to protect and foster the growth of a
relatively new and fragile industry.

In light of the serious ramifications
of the FCC proposal, several
mitigating points should be made to
clarify the situation:

  -:-Some media reports have stated
     that the access fees could be as
     much as 9 cents per minute
     ($5.40 an hour), nearly doubling
     current per-hour charges of $6
     for access to the CompuServe
     Information Service.  In fact,
     the access charges are likely to
     be far less, probably closer to
     3 and a half cents per minute
     ($2 an hour). CompuServe bases
     its estimation on the track
     record of other similar charges
     in the communications industry
     and upon information received
     directly from Bell Operating
     Companies.

  -:-There is likely to be a
     differentiation between "prime"
     daytime and "non-prime"
     nighttime rates, with lower
     access fees at night. Such a
     scenario would be better for
     home users who most frequently
     access information services at
     night.

  -:-Any access fees, regardless of
     how they are applied, would be
     levied on all competitors in the
     information industry.

Some competitors who do not own their
own networks, as CompuServe does,
would have even higher costs
associated with a lifting of the
access charge exemption.

Despite these ameliorating
circumstances, CompuServe views any
additional communications surcharges
with the utmost seriousness and will
continue its efforts to defeat the
implementation of such charges. 

It is CompuServe's opinion that the
FCC's action is in conflict with the
government's stated position of
creating an atmosphere of free and
fair competition in the
communications industry and of
devising ways to put information
services within the reach of all
Americans. The FCC's proposed
surcharge will only further
disadvantage the average home
subscriber and impede access to
online information for millions of
Americans. 
_____________________________________
ATARI HOLDS COMPUTER EXPO

Atari Corp. held a computer expo in
Santa Clara, Calif., June 19 and 20.

The show will featured about 80
companies demonstrating hardware and
software for desktop publishing, word
processing, database management,
graphics and spreadsheets. Atari
offered a 520ST personal computer as
a door prize.

In addition, the exposition featured
a computer game tournament. According
to Atari, as many as 16 participants
at a time will got a chance to play
MIDImaze, a game created by Los
Angeles music software developer
Hybrid Arts. The tournament winner
received a Casio synthesizer.

The show, which was held at the Santa
Clara Convention Center, was open to
the public between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.
each day. Admission was $5 at the
door. Participating Atari user groups
and computer stores sold tickets for
$3.50. Children 12 and under
accompanied by an adult were admitted
free.
_____________________________________
Xx ONLINE MAGAZINE NEWS
_____________________________________
By:Ron Kovacs

As many of you know by now there are
other online publications available.
This week we highlight TeleTalk. The
following text was taken from the
12th edition.

*OnLineOnLineOnLineOnLineOnLineOnLin*
*OnLine                       OnLine*
*OnLine      TeleTalk...      OnLine*
*OnLine                       OnLine*
*OnLine  The BBSer and SysOp  OnLine*
*OnLine       RESOURCE!       OnLine*
*OnLine                       OnLine*
*OnLineOnLineOnLineOnLineOnLineOnLin*
*OnLineOnLineOnLineOnLineOnLineOnLin*
*                                   *
* (C)opyright 1987    Public Domain *
*  Vol.2, Issue 12    Page 1 (of 2) *
*                                   *
*************************************
*   "An AUTHORIZED T/TalkNET BBS!"  *
*     John Peters - Bob Connors     *
*                                   *
* T/TalkNET           (303)392-6631 *
* The Graphics Dump  *(201)469-0049 *
* The Data Store     *(214)520-1412 *
* The Vault          *(303)796-0539 *
* Modern Times       *(414)384-1701 *
* Sorman (Sweden) 1-11-46-470-22183 *
*         * = PC Pursuitable        *
*************************************
INDEX
=====================================

 LOG ON .................... [LOG]
  News from Sweden!

 DOCTOR BOB ................ [BOB]
  Talks about Xmodem and "(non)
  standard" communication protocols.

 MESSAGE OF THE MONTH ...... [MSG]

 FCC UPDATE ................ [FCC]
  You can breathe easier, for awhile
  anyway.

 SYSOP'S CORNER ............ [COR]
  First impressions DO count!

 HOT PURSUIT! - Why is Xmodem
 soooooo slow?

 DEC WARS! - Part II.

 BBS networking with the Apple //
 computer.

 TeleTalk OnLine - Who, When and
 Where.

In the weeks ahead we will arrange
publication of some articles which
are of interest to our readers.
_____________________________________
Xx NEXT WEEK IN ZMAG
_____________________________________
+++ Part 2 of Antics CES Report
+++ Software Review by Steve Godun
+++ General Users Magazine Excerpts
+++ BBS Update
_____________________________________
ZMAGAZINE JUNE     (c)1987 Ron Kovacs
June 22, 1987                Issue:58
Reprint Permission Granted
_____________________________________




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