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Article #449 (730 is last):
From: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson)
Newsgroups: freenet.sci.comp.atari.mags
Subject: Atari Explorer Online: 2-Apr-94 #0306
Reply-To: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson)
Posted-By: xx004 (aa789 - Bruce D. Nelson)
Date: Wed Apr  6 15:54:22 1994


 ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
 :: Volume 3 - Issue 6       ATARI EXPLORER ONLINE          2 April 1994 ::
 ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
 ::                                                                      ::
 ::  ATARI .............. News, reviews, & solutions ............ ATARI  ::
 ::    EXPLORER ............ for the online Atari .......... EXPLORER    ::
 ::       ONLINE ................. Community .............. ONLINE       ::
 ::                                                                      ::
 ::    Published and Copyright (c) 1993-1994 by Subspace Publishers      ::
 ::                         All Rights Reserved                          ::
 ::    """"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""      ::
 ::  Publisher ........................... Michael Lindsay   EXPLORER    ::
 ::   Editor .................................. Travis Guy   AEO.MAG     ::
 ::    Assistant Editor GEnie................ Ron Robinson   EXPLORER.1  ::
 ::     Assistant Editor CompuServe.......... Albert Dayes   AEO.1       ::
 ::      Assistant Editor Delphi......... Andreas Barbiero   AEO.2       ::
 ::       Assistant Editor Internet........ Timothy Wilson   AEO.8       ::
 ::        Atari Asylum ... [Closed] ...... Gregg Anderson   AEO.7       ::
 ::         Unabashed Atariophile ..... Michael R. Burkley   AEO.4       ::
 ::          Atari Artist ................... Peter Donoso   EXPLORER.2  ::
 ::           Jaguar Junkie ............... Tal Funke-Bilu   EXPLORER.5  ::
 ::                                                                      ::
 ::                             Contributors:                            ::
 ::                             """""""""""""                            ::
 ::                       Duncan Brown, Ron Whittam,                     ::
 ::                   Michael Robinson, Patrick Roelandt                 ::
 ::                                                                      ::
 ::                                                                      ::
 ::                      Telecommunicated to you via:                    ::
 ::                      """"""""""""""""""""""""""""                    ::
 ::                             GEnie: AEO.MAG                           ::
 ::                         CompuServe: 70007,3615                       ::
 ::                             Delphi: AEO_MAG                          ::
 ::                      Fnet: AEO Conference, Node 319                  ::
 ::                  AtariNet: AEO Conference, Node 51:1/10              ::
 ::                                                                      ::
 ::             Internet mailing address: aeo.mag@genie.geis.com         ::
 ::         FTP AEO Volume 3 issues from: rahul.net:pub/wilsont/AEO      ::
 ::              Search gopherspace under "aeo" for back issues          ::
 ::                                                                      ::
 ::   Internet subscription service: stzmagazine-request@virginia.edu    ::
 ::                 (Internet subscription requests ONLY!)               ::
 ::                                                                      ::
 ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::


                              Table of Contents


* From the Editors ......................... A day late and a dollar short.

* Digital Briefs ................................ Computer, high tech, and 
                                                  video game industry news.

* Dateline: Atari! ............. Atari is moving Jags and running ads - no
                                 fooling there in this April Fools Edition
                                         of Bob Brodie's monthly GEnie RTC.

* Jaguar Tackboard ...................... New developer & more Jaguar news.

* Jeff Minter - Stoked on the Jag ....... The brain behind LlamaSoft talks
                                              about Atari coding with Tal.
                                                Have a cuppa and settle in.

* Waiting for Tempest / Tips ............ Haven't played Tempest 2000 yet?
                                           Or have you, yet you're seeking
                                               help? Tal's beaten Beastly,
                                                     and offers his advice.

* Will Jaguar make Atari King again? ......... A view on Atari's situation
                                                  with the Jaguar from the
                                                    Netherlands. Can Atari
                                                        make it back to #1?

* AEO Interview: Lyra F'lalsi Polo ....... The one-woman Polo GameWare wiz
                                                  talks about her solo Jag
                                                   effort, BattlePong 2001!

* Andreas' Den ........... Back from flying with the Aussies in San Diego,
                                       Andreas mulls over jazzed-up Ataris.

* Scoping Out Jaugar RGB ........ New Jaguar developer Duncan Brown wanted
                                     to learn the secrets behind the Jag's
                                        RGB outputs. He shares them, along
                                          with arcade monitor connectivity.

* "From a Saved Backup" ............... In this installment, Ron discusses
                                           how to make user group meetings
                                             serve the users and the group.

* The Unabashed Atariophile ................... PD and Shareware files for
                                                     _your_ Atari computer.

* Gadgets By Small Update ................ Dave's online with Spectre news.

* GEnie News ........................... New files & happenings on Atari's
                                                  Official Online Resource.

* Developing News ......................... 1994 Michigan Atari Fair
                                            Calamus AMNESTY/Upgrade Offer!
                                            M.A.G.E. Update
                                            STraight FAX 2.20
                                            Digital Disk Magazine
                                            JV Converts PAC to Shareware
                                            New GEM-View 3.xx Module Packs

* Shutdown ............................ Around the world and up your block.


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||  From the Editors ....... Atari Explorer Online: The Next Generation
 |||  Travis Guy
/ | \ GEnie: AEO.MAG   Delphi: AEO_MAG   Internet: aeo.mag@genie.geis.com
      -------------------------------------------------------------------

Wow. Another jam-packed issue of AEO. I'll try to keep it brief here.
First up, notice the sub head for my editorial in the Table o'
Contents, "A day late...." I wanted to bring this issue out yesterday,
but due to various late-breaking news events couldn't. There's a
special little joke inside that I couldn't have carried out without
the assistance of Assistant Editor Ron Robinson's son Michael. Y'all
have been warned.

Jaguar ads are appearing on cable, and in an expanding group of local
markets, Tempest 2000 is officially out, and it's earning RAVES! (See
the last issue of AEO for two T2K reviews.) The first Tempest 2000
grandmaster, Tal Funke-Bilu has joined the ranks of AEO writers in a
dashing manner. He's contributed a in-depth interview with Jeff
Minter himself, as well as a list of Beastly Mode-beating tips for
everyone. I hope all of you will make Tal feel at home here.

Ok, ok, I said I'll keep this brief. Both Andreas and Albert are back
and writing; Michael Burkley has an Atariophile that's fitting to the
holiday season; Ron Whittam continues his series on user groups;
Patrick Roelandt, a new AEO coorespondant from the Netherlands, has
an insightful look at Atari and its future with the Jaguar; Jaguar
developer Duncan Brown scopes the RGB pinouts on the Jag for us; I
have an exclusive interview with an unheard of Jaguar developer (a
GIF of her game, BattlePong 2001, is included in the archive!); Dave
Small updates us all on Spectre; GEnie ST RT News; TOS developer press
releases... what more could you want?

It's here in this issue of AEO - your Window on events in the World
Atari. Enjoy, and we'll see you back in a few weeks.

America sets her clocks ahead one hour tonight, be there... and your
shoelace is untied. April Fools!


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   Digital Briefs - Industry News
 |||   By: Albert Dayes
/ | \  CIS: 70007,3615      GEnie: AEO.1
       -----------------------------------------------------------------

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Atari News
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

For Immediate Release
March 24, 1994

       Atari Corp. Announces Fourth Quarter and 1993 Results
         and Additional Equity Investment by Time-Warner

Sunnyvale, CA -- Atari Corp. (ASE:ATC) today reported results of
operations for the fourth quarter and year ended Dec. 31, 1993. Net
sales for the fourth quarter 1993 were $8.5 million as compared to
$25.5 million for the same quarter 1992. For the fourth quarter of
1993 Atari incurred a net loss of $22.6 million as compared to a net
loss of $21.9 million in the same quarter in 1992. In the fourth
quarter of 1993 the Company took charges which included the writedown
of $12.1 million in inventory and other items and $6.0 million for
restructuring charges associated with the completion of the company's
consolidation of its European operations and closure of its Australian
subsidiary. For the year 1993 the Company reported sales of $28.8
million as compared to $127.3 million in 1992. For 1993, the Company
incurred a loss of $48.9 million as compared to $73.6 million for
1992.

Commenting on the results, Sam Tramiel, president of Atari, said,
"While we are disappointed in the magnitude of our losses in the
fourth quarter and 1993 as a whole, we believe that we have
substantially completed our transition from our older technology
products and the consolidation of our worldwide operations. In the
fourth quarter of 1993, we successfully launched the Atari Jaguar, the
64-bit interactive multimedia entertainment system. The intense game,
Tempest 2000 for the Atari Jaguar, ships this week and was recently
awarded "Game of the Month" by Die Hard Game Fan and Electronic Gaming
Monthly magazines. In addition to the initial launch markets of New
York and San Francisco, we have now introduced Jaguar in Los Angeles,
and as availability of Jaguar hardware and software increases, we will
broaden our distribution throughout the United States.  As a result of
increased spending for marketing activities and until such time as
shipments of Jaguar products are made in substantial volume, we do not
expect to achieve profitability."

                         Time Warner Investment

In addition, Atari Corp. entered into an agreement to sell 1.5 million
shares of its common stock to Time Warner Inc. at a price of $8.50 per
share for an aggregate investment of $12.8 million. The transaction
would increase Time Warner's interest in Atari Corp. from
approximately 25% to 27%. The agreement is subject to regulatory
clearance and other formalities of closing. Sam Tramiel said, "We
welcome the additional investment by Time Warner. These funds along
with our existing cash balances will be used to expand Jaguar
throughout the United States."


For Immediate Release
March 24, 1994

        Atari Corporation And Nintendo Reach Settlement
                  In Patent Infringement Case

Sunnyvale, CA -- Atari Corporation (ASE:ATC) today reported that
Nintendo of America, Inc. and Atari Corporation have settled
litigation concerning Atari Corporation's '114 Patent. The '114 Patent
relates to horizontal scrolling in video games. The '114 Patent is
part of Atari Corporation's portfolio of pioneering patents in the
computer and video game field. For a cash payment, Atari Corporation
granted Nintendo a license to certain patents in Atari Corporation's
portfolio. The License does not include Atari Corporation's patents
related to LYNX or patents pending relating to the JAGUAR technology.

Sam Tramiel, President of Atari Corporation, stated "This is an
important settlement that will hopefully lead to resolution of other
patent infringement claims." The '114 Patent and two other Atari
Corporation patents are the subject of litigation between Atari
Corporation and Sega which is pending in the United States District
Court, Northern District of California.


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Operating Systems
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

//// OS PINK? - IBM and Apple formally announced the new Taligent
=============   operating system. It was introduced to close to 500
people at the PC Forum trade show in Arizona. This new operating
system is designed using OOT or object oriented technology to be the
new standard in operating systems software. Its main target is
Microsoft Corp, which has a very strong hold on the current operating
system software market.

//// Network Services - AT&T and Novell (maker of Netware, one of the
=====================   most popular networking software on the
market) announced Netware Telephony Services. The joint use of
telephones and computers in this fashion will allow for EMail,
voicemail, fax, schedule conference calls and desktop video mail to be
integrated directly into applications. The applications will allow
users to create conference calls just by highlighting names and
clicking on an icon. Over 40 software developers are currently working
on new software applications.


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Computer Stats
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

//// One in Four - Over 25 percent of households in the USA own
================   computers according to a recent study by the
Software Publishers Association. Recent price drops in computer prices
is one of the reasons given for the increase in computer ownership.
Computer Software also surged during the recent price drops of
computing hardware as well. CD-ROM software led the way as the fastest
growing market.

//// Standard Query on Top - SQL Access Group said that the SQL
==========================   Access standard is in greater demand
than any other emerging standard, according to a national survey on
strategic business applications conducted by The Standish Group.

SQL Access was named most often out of 12 emerging standards as the
standard to which companies will demand compliance within the next
three years. The objective of the national survey on strategic
business applications was to identify and track major application
development and migrations trends. Companies participating in the
survey were asked to name the five most important strategic business
applications and then answer a series of questions regardingthose
applications.

SQL Access rated a full 14 percentage points higher in demand than any
other standard, including: X/Open XA, IBM SAA, DEC AIA, IBM DRDA, and
ISO RDA.

//// Piracy Cost High - Software theft totals for 1993 were $7.45
=====================   billion dollars worldwide. The US led the way
with a $1.57 billion dollar loss, which was down from $3 Billion from
a few years back. An SPA study on global piracy and intellectual
property product use in international markets is expected to be
available in June, 1994.


=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Mergers
=-=-=-=-=-=-=

//// Adobe (creator of the PostScript language and Acrobat software)
========== and Aldus (creator of PageMaker DTP package) will merge
operations. Aldus will benefit from the deep pockets of Adobe while
Adobe will have one less competitor to deal with. Both companies
together will have a strong portfolio of digital video, digital
pre-press and desktop publishing related products.

//// Novell (a large network software maker) will purchase WordPerfect
===========  Corp. for $1.4 billion dollars in stock. Lotus Corp. was
also fighting for WordPerfect but eventually lost out to Novell.
Novell, which also owns Unix System Labs (USL), will also take over
the Borland spreadsheet Quatro Pro for $145 million dollars cash. This
new arrangement will create one of the three largest software makers
in the USA.


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Smart Weapons
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

//// TRW's GEL propels - TRW will provide six complete propulsion
======================   units, consisting of feed systems and
engines, for six flight demonstrations of The Army Combined Arms
Weapons System (TACAWS).

The TRW-developed propulsion systems will enable the TACAWS missiles
to slow down and search for targets, speed up and maneuver precisely
to home in on them, shut down and restart. This versatility is
achieved with gel propellants,;very thick, jelly-like fuels that offer
the same throttling capability as conventional liquid fuels but are
inherently safer.

Gel propellants don't leak, don't spill and aren't supposed to blow
up. They also enable these "smart" missiles to manage fuel use and
thus extend their range. "Gels' high viscosity at low storage pressure
limits the amount of propellant that can leak and mix if the storage
tanks are punctured," TRW Program Manager Don Fritz said.

//// Hide Behind a Tree - In June, Power Spectra announced that its
=======================   Bulk Avalanche Semiconductor Switch (BASS)
had been used as a transmitter in a successful demonstration of a
Foliage Penetration (FOPEN) Synthetic Aperture Radar. As a consequence
of that demonstration, Boeing and Power Spectra are involved in a
cooperative program, with ARL, to perfect such a system. Power Spectra
has provided ARL with an improved transmitter with four times the
power of the original one.

Michael Gamble, Power Spectra's president said: "This new effort is
the first step toward demonstrating that, on an airborne platform, a
foliage penetrating (FOPEN) radar can perform the militarily useful
function of finding uncooperative targets under forest or jungle
cover.

"The earlier demonstration, conducted by ARL, was performed on the
ground. We're now going to explore whether the same surveillance can
be done from the air, where it would be extremely useful to military
commanders in the field, as well as law enforcement authorities. We
have long held the belief that such a radar could be constructed using
the BASS as its transmitter, now the Army is giving us the opportunity
to prove the premise."

//// Top Gun Computer - Applied Data Technology was recently given
=====================   a contract to expand the present Tactical
Aircrew Combat Training System (TACTS) range complex at NAS Fallon, NV.

TACTS ranges are designed to provide realistic training for tactical
aircrews using actual air-to-air and air-to-ground combat tactics
employing electronically simulated weapons firings. Training missions
can be monitored on the ground in real time through computer-generated
graphics and subsequently replayed for aircrew debriefing and mission
analysis.

The training received by Navy aircrews on this and other TACTS ranges
has been credited with the excellent performance of the combined air
forces in Operation Desert Storm.

NAS Fallon is home for the Naval Strike Warfare Center. The
combination of "Strike U" and the TACTS range complex provide
graduate-level tactical training for Navy aircrews prior to deployment
overseas.

The U.S. Navy Fighter Weapons School ("Top Gun" at NAS Miramar,
Calif.) will be moving to NAS Fallon by the middle of the decade. NAS
Fallon and the TACTS range will continue to play a larger and more
important role in tactical training and readiness of the U.S. Navy,
Marine Corps and Air Force.


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// In the Chips
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

//// 100 MHZ Power - IBM/Motorola demonstrated a new PowerPC 601 chip
==================  that will run at 100 MHz. In addition to the speed
increase the size of the package was reduced to 0.5 micron CMOS
technology. The chip is supposed to be available in limited quantities
during late 1994.

//// 68K Family Expands - Heurikon Corp announced Nitro, the first
=======================   CPU board based on Motorola's new MC68060
microprocessor. Motorola is expected to introduce the new cpu at the
Embedded System Conference in April. The '060 is compatible with the
68040 chip with extensive cache improvements. The '060 employs a dual
4-stage integer pipelines, an 8-kbyte instruction cache, 8-kbyte data
cache, and 256-entry branch cache. Running at 50 MHz the new chip
gives around 100 MIPS (Million of Instructions Per Second) peak
performance.


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Court Battles
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

//// Stac'ed Deck - Microsoft and Stac continue their dualing in court
=================   with each company attempting to block shipments
of the other's products. The fight continues over intellectual
property that each company accuses the other of taking.

//// Apple Sliced? - Over 400 Apple dealers filed a class action
==================   lawsuit against Apple Computer Inc. Fraud and
unfair business practices are some of the charges in the suit. The
main issue seems to be over an agreement between dealers and Apple
concerning the education market. It was claimed that the confidential
information Apple gained from its dealers was then used by Apple to
sell its products directly to the education market.

//// Court Games - Atari Games and Nintendo of America settled several
================   different legal disputes disputes between them
last week. Atari Games is a privately held company and is not related
to Atari Corp.


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Goin' Digital
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

//// 3D Press - Triad Technologies introduced a new technology that
=============   permits high resolution, 3-D images to be produced on
conventional offset or silk-screen presses thereby lowering the cost
of producing dimensional graphics materials by as much as 70 percent.

Reginald Saxton, chief executive stated that, "The printed images
boast vivid color in all half tones and, unlike holographic or
lenticular images, can be viewed from any angle and under virtually
any lighting conditions." Saxton noted that the company's patented
technology, referred to as Hologravure was developed by a French
scientist after 18 years of research.

//// Saved by EMail - At work one day, 56-year-old Jack Miller began
===================   having severe chest pains and tried to call his
doctor. After being stuck on hold, he entered the message "HELP. FEEL
SICK. I NEED HELP." in his company's EMail system. Soon afterwards,
he collasped.

Quickly, other office workers came running to adminster aid and called
for additional help. Today Jack thinks of EMail as Emergency Mail,
since it was truely a life saver in his case.

//// Digital Pix - Kodak formed a new digital imaging group which
================   will initially be made up of several existing
Kodak units. These units include Applied Imaging, CD Imaging (Compact
Disc) and Printer Products.

The new unit will serve image users who need the benefits of speed and
flexibility offered by digital imaging," said Jack Thomas, president
of Kodak's Imaging group. "These image users include news photographers,
magazine and broadcast publishers, archivists, desktop publishers, and
personal computer users, among others who use images in conducting
their businesses."


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Video Games
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

//// New Tank Wars - Atari Games introduced T-Mek, at the ACME
==================  (American Coin Machine Expo). T-Mek is a four (or
more) person tank fighting game. Look for it to appear in the early
summer of 1994.

//// Project Unreality? - Nintendo introduced the Super Game Boy
=======================   system. This new sytem allows one to play
over 350 Game Boy cartridges on the SNES (Super Nintendo Entertainment
System) in up to four colors. Unlike existing Game Boy games, new Game
Boy games will be able to display 256 color graphics when played
through the Super Game Boy cartridge.

//// Sega's 16/32 - Sega introduced a new 32-bit chip upgrade that
=================   will work in existing Sega Genesis 16-bit game
machines. It will allow for improved speed and other capabilities in
new game software designed for the system, while permitting current
Genesis games to be played. The system, dubbed Super 32X, will retail
for around $149 later this year.

//// Mario Instinct - Nintendo of America has signed Rare Ltd., and
===================   Rare Coin-It Toys & Games, Inc. to develop
"Killer Instinct", a "futuristic 3D fighting game" for the Nintendo
Project Reality video game system. Nintendo also reports that WMS
Industries will distribute the arcade version of Killer Instinct in
late 1994. A private showing of the game will be held at the Summer
CES this June.


                            --==--==--==--==--


---------------------------------------------------------------------------
--       --==--==--      Delphi Sign-Up Information      --==--==--      --
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--  To enroll as a Delphi subscriber, modem call 1-800-365-4636. Press   --
--  [Return] until you see "Password:", then type IP26 [Return]          --
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--                                                                       --
--       --==--==--      Delphi Sign-Up Information      --==--==--      --
---------------------------------------------------------------------------


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   Dateline: Atari!
 |||   With Bob Brodie
/ | \  File Courtesy of GEnie
       ------------------------------------------------------------------

=========================================================================
(C) 1994 by Atari Corporation, GEnie, and the Atari Roundtables. May
be reprinted only with this notice intact.  The Atari Roundtables on
GEnie are *official* information services of Atari Corporation. To sign
up for GEnie service, call (with modem) 800-638-8369.  Upon connection
type HHH (RETURN after that). Wait for the U#= prompt.Type XTX99437,GENIE
and press [RETURN]. The system will prompt you for your information.
==========================================================================

                     Dateline Atari with Bob Brodie
                              April 1, 1994

                            Host - Lou Rocha

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Welcome to the April session of Dateline Atari with
Bob Brodie! This is a GEnie holiday weekend and the message traffic
has been heavy all day. Over the past weeks there has been a lot of
interest in Tempest 2000, the newest Jaguar entry and many messages
have praised the technical qualities of this game. On the down side,
there is also some disappointment about shipping delays.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> In other news, many GEnie users have posted sightings
of Atari ads in their local media. No, I'm not pulling an April Fool's
prank on you. It's true! From the sound of things, Atari is really
headed towards some heavy marketing of the award-winning Jaguar game
system.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Bob is ready with his opening comments so join me as we
check in on the world of Atari. Without further ado, here's Bob.....

 A wise man once said not to believe everything that you
hear. The same thing could be said for things that you read, too.
Happy April Fools Day! Here's just a sample of some of the "foolery"
that's been floating around about Atari the last few days online:


               TIME WARNER & ATARI CORP FORM AVID SOFTWARE!

March 25, 1994
For Immediate Release

   TIME WARNER AND ATARI CORPORATION FORM NEW SOFTWARE PUBLISHING
                                 FIRM

Sunnyvale Ca.--Atari Corporation today announces a new software firm
in collaboration with Time Warner, Inc.. Avid Software, Incorporated
will commence operations within the next thrity (30) days.  Space will
be provided initially within the executive suites of Atari Corporation
in Sunnyvale, California. A development lab will also be established
at the Warner Bros.  Studios in Burbank, California. The two
facilities will be linked by high technology satellite WATTS services
for real time software development.  Warner Bros. will focus on story
lines and intense animated graphics. The operation in Sunnyvale will
assemble the hardware-based and software-based graphics engines as
well as game play models and prototypes.

The new operation is announced just months following Atari
Corporation's successful launch of a new 64-bit gaming system dubbed
the Jaguar. Avid Software will dedicate 100% of development time for
the first year exclusively to the Atari Jaguar platform. Although core
development teams have been assembled for the Avid Software project,
executive decisions will be made by Mr. Sam Tramiel, President of
Atari Corporation, until a permanent executive staff has been
selected. A panel assembeled by Time Warner will review all long range
goals every ninety (90) days.

The first four software titles to be developed by Avid Software and
scheduled to be released within the fourth quarter of 1994 have also
been announced.  They promise a unique blend of realistic digitized
graphics, powerful high-definition animations, unique gaming plots and
topical story lines.

HARDING FALLS(tm)--- Just outside of Portland, Oregon a small
unincorporated town adopts a new name; Harding Falls. Made popular by
a local young girl who fought her way to the '94 Winter Games, the
town unites to launch a new young starlet on to a promising athletic
career. Harding Falls is where it all begins.  Local challengers test
all of their physical savoy against each other for overall performance
virtues. Players pre-select their character from an arsenal of
determined challengers. Each stage consists of a practice session in
which a complete skating routine must be rehearsed. Obstacles such as
untied skates, boos from the crowd and irate family members distract
your performance. With each small win, a weapon toward victory is
awarded for use during the performance levels. Sometimes it might be
deadly capped teeth. Other times it may be a stick or a steel club.
Play against 64-bits of automated power or one-on-one with an
aggressive challenger by your side; either way you either win gold or
cry your way back to Harding Falls to try all over again.
Cartridge-based game features hidden secrets, multi-player action,
high resolution graphics and a five dollar coupon toward the purchase
of "The Club".

WARNER'S STUNT SPECTACLES(tm)--- With so many action games designed to
fight and kill opponents, Warner Bros. calls upon their army of stunt
professionals to reveal their best kept secrets of staying alive. Take
a 125-level backstage studio tour through Warner Bros.  hottest action
films such as Superman, FreeJack, Batman Returns, The Last Boyscout
and The Fugitive. Race through high definition scenes of your favorite
films and pick up props such as breakaway chairs and candy glass
bottles. Battle friendly adversaries, but don't hurt them... after
all, they are really your friends. Pick up the wrong prop as a weapon
and you may kill your supporting actor and lose your part in the
greatest film ever made. Don't lose your union card! This fast paced,
action game includes the thrills of thrillers and the secrets of a
great mystery. The ultimate object is to win without hurting anyone,
but don't think for a moment there is no blood! One player action.
Cartridge-based game includes a $5 off coupon for select Warner Bros.
videos.

BOBBY BOBBIT AND FRIENDS(tm)--- Here's an animated interactive cartoon
for adults only! At first glance, it looks harmless enough...  Bobby
Bobbit is a bouncy bunny that likes to make friends.  Collect points
by finding carrots and hidden treasures. Unlike most treasures,
though, Bobby doesn't want to collect coins and tokens. He collects
shears, razor blades and carving knives. Usually Bobby's friends help
find treasures, but sometimes his friends get too rough and Bobby must
take corrective action! Game includes vivid cartoon violence unlike
any other you have ever seen. Let's just say it's a Saturday morning
cartoon that will increase attendance at Sunday Mass.

FOOL'S REVENGE(tm)--- A new concept in virtual world gaming, Fool's
Revenge is a hardware and sofware based interactive entertainment
package. Included is a unique, direct connect mini printer which
installs to the second joypad port of the Atari Jaguar 64-bit gaming
system. The cartridge-based program includes over 200 megabytes of
compressed text and 2 megabytes of graphic icons. World headlines and
events are changing everyday. You and your opponents review your
options. At risk is your dignity and pride and the prize is a lot of
laughs. For one player to an entire family. Look another bogus press
release on the mini printer! Did you fall for that one too?

Products named are properties of their owning companies. Text and
concept (c)1994, Artisan Software. (209) 239-1552.

                             ### END ###

For those of you unfamiliar with Artisan Software, it's a company that
Don Thomas of Atari Corporation runs in his spare time.
Congratulations for a beauty of joke, Don.  The gang at ST Report had
this press release up as news flash on Delphi in a hurry.  In fact,
it's STILL THERE!!!

Some of the folk over on CompuServe didn't laugh very much, so Don had
to do a follow up job on them:

WARNING: Look for clues! You are about to be had! This may be it!

March 32, 1994 (Clue: This date doesn't exist) [commented for the
mentally impaired] JAGUAR OWNERS EXPOSED TO BOGUS PRESS RELEASE (bogus
headline)

Members dismember each other (overstated) over ethics debate -
alledged tainted press release blamed (not true, bogus subhead)

Allover, US-- An unnamed source (unsubstantiated) today reported that
users of the popular 64-bit Atari Jaguar gaming system have banned
together (typed online messages) in an effort to discredit the
infamous "bogus" press release just days before the dreaded April
Fools holiday is to be celebrated throughout the world (run on
sentence-hate 'em!).

Unlike a bug that cripples a computer until the entire system can be
reboot, the sinister press release causes unusual chemicals to form in
the brain (lions and tigers and bear a thought, oh my!).  Dr.  Ima
Knotheir (alias) of the Institute of Preventive Thinking (I.P.T.)
states that while "some (most everyone) finds some humor as the feared
press release propagates over the networks, clear laboratory study
(personal opinion) of those who are without brains indicate there is
no humor in anything classified as funny." Dr.  Knotheir was unable to
indicate a direct association of his study to the specific press
release that launched this one, however.

In support of the doctor's findings, Jaguar owners have launched an
attack against any and all bogus press release that contain
misinformation.  Within six weeks, a committee will be formed to
establish a panel that will elect a professional staff to advise a
supervisory board for a new team of advisors to appoint a cabinet to
determine whether a bogus press release may contain accurate
information (Government funding is anticipated).  In the interim, all
bogus press releases must be labeled to contain artificial ingredients
which have been known to cause brain activity by the I.P.T.  (huh?)

In their first official action, the Jaguars Owners Bogus Press Release
Action Committee has classified this bogus press release to be
impounded and not read.  In compliance with this declaration, the
following statement has been appended for your safety:

IMPORTANT: DO NOT READ THIS!

Products named are properties of their owning companies.  Text and
concept (c)1994, Artisan Software.

Don strikes again!!  Anthony Shubert, publisher of the Game Master
Journal online magazine called me for comments about the formation of
AVID Software.  When I told Anthony it was all a joke, he moaned and
wailed for quite awhile on the phone.  Feeling guilty, I decided to
help him out with a few ideas to unleash on an unsuspecting
readership.

My suggestion was a bogus press release from Sega, announcing that
they could no longer, in good conscience recommend that their
customers spend their money on out-dated 16 bit game carts with new
systems on the horizon.  Instead, they were to announce a new savings
program called the Sega Saturn CD in cooperation with some of the
leading financial institutions in the country!  Rather than spend
their hard earned cash on inferior products, Sega customers would
invest in a CD that would mature in the future when a new machine is
available.  Anxious customers to taste the latest technology could do
so by calling toll free 1-800-465-2827.

Some of you might recognize that line as our 1-800-GO-JAGUAR number.
:-)

Anthony didn't do quite as well as I did (oh well, I tried!):  Here's
Here's his piece that was published in Game Master Journal:

Nintendo, Sega call for product boycot

Los Angeles, (March 32, 1994)

   The Big Two announced today that they are removing all Genesis and
Super NES products from stores effective immediately.  A Nintendo
representative said "We cannot in good conscience allow our inferior
technologies to be sold with Project Reality and Saturn/32X coming so
soon - only 18 months away." She went on to say that anyone selling
the product will be fined by the FTC for selling antiquated
technology.  Sega's reps echoed Nintendo.  They also said that no more
voilent games would be allowed on any Sega product.. all games must
fit their GA rating.  In a related story, Nintendo signed a deal with
Midway, saying that MK2 will be exactly like the arcade, blood and
all.  MK2 will be out this summer, with MK3 hitting the SNES before
the arcade, probably in time for Christmas.



 This past week Atari concluded a trial against Bill
Yerger, of Zephyr Computer, MicroWorld, and ST Plus. During the
course of the trial, we were surprised to learn that Mr. Yerger's
attorney's were calling Ralph Mariano as a charecter witness for Mr.
Yerger. Rumor has it that Mariano was compensated for his appearance
at the trial by a supply of hard drives and modems. Hmmmmm....

Unlike Lee Siler, who was given a gold Atari label pin by Leonard
Tramiel, Mr. Mariano didn't get a gold pin.

Enough of the fun and games. Hope you all enjoyed them as much as I
did.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> CHARACTER WITNESS ????????

 Yep.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Ready for some questions?

 With that, I'm ready to get down to business and answer
any questions that our friends present tonight might have, Lou.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> We have six in the queue... five are newcomers.... be
gentle :-) First we have Lancer

<[Lancer] S.FOSKETT> Hi Bob!  I can't believe it!  My first DateLine
ATARI and I scoop the opening file and get the first question too!

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Welcome, Lancer. Please ask your question

<[Lancer] S.FOSKETT> Ok, here it is:  What's the word on the Black
Page Syndrome and Atari Works 2.0?  I love AW, BTW!

 Hi Lancer! Welcome to Dateline: Atari. We're glad that
you have decided to join us in the CO tonight. Pradip has issued a
fix to a selected number of Beta testers on the Black page problem.
Some of them are pleased with the results of the fix. The same
testers are reporting that the Black Page problem is also present in
Works 2.0 beta, so we need to check that out as well. It is being
worked on. In the interim, if you have the Black Page problem, you
may return your diskettes to me at Atari and I will provide you with
an earlier version of Works that doesn't have the BPS.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> On to Dave Shorr

<[Dave] D.SHORR> Will the Jaguar's pack-in be changed from Cybermorph
to Alien vs. Predator?

 We haven't made a firm decision about that yet, Dave. It
is something that we've talked about.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Hassen is next, Bob

<[Hassen] H.HAMMOUD> Hello Bob, nice to "see" you again. Is there any
chance of Atari selling Falcons thru chains, such as Sears. They all
have clones and Macs, why not Ataris? Also, when will the Jag CD
player be released?

 Hassen, at this point I don't think that we'll have much
success selling Falcons thru chain stores like Sears. The Jaguar CD
is set to be completed in the late Summertime at this point.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Now we have Steve Elek

<[Steve] S.ELEK> When will educational games be ready for the JAG, CD
ROM disks for Atari, and when will 64 bit RISC computer from Atari be
in.

 Hi Steve, long time no type to! At this point in time I
haven't seen any firm educational titles for the Jaguar yet. There
are some developers looking at ports of other educational titles, but
they haven't committed to them yet. There has been no announcement of
a 64-bit RISC computer from Atari, so whatever you have heard about
that is pure speculation. And there was a recent CO on GEnie with the
gang from Walnut Creek Software discussing their CD for the Atari, I
am certain that you can obtain a copy of the transcript from the
library here on GEnie. I understand it is an excellent CD.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> OK. Paul Blagay. Ooops Scott is next. Then Paul.

<[Scott] FIZSOFT> Hello Bob, Can you give any release dates, prices,
titles, or specs on the Jaguar Virtual Reality HMD? Will it be cart
based or CD-ROM based?

 Hi Scott, we're very, VERY interested in Virtual Reality
HMD for the Jaguar. However, almost everything that we have looked at
so far is incredibly expensive. We're working hard with a couple of
key third party developers to try to create something that will more
in line with the cost of the Jaguar. So at this point I'm afraid that
I have no info regarding price, titles, or availability for that end
of the product line. I can assure you that we are working on it,
though.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Paul Blagay is next up 

<[Paul] P.BLAGAY> Hi Bob, happy Easter! I was wondering when we will
see some Linkable games for the Jag. I hope Doom will be fully
linkable. Also, any news on possible Jag to Lynx hookups? Maybe CF2
linking to the Lynx version! Also, will the CD come with extra Ram,
along with the MPEG cart?

 Hi Paul, the version of DOOM that we have in the office
right now is linkable...and we like it lots!! :0 Our developer staff
is taking pains to make sure that the developers know how to take
advantage of the Lynx-Jaguar connections, and are preaching the
advantages of it. Re the CD, I'm not sure at this point.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Whew! Busy back here... OK, Barry is next

<[Barry] B.CANTIN> Hi, Bob - got my Lynx question for you. There has
been a lot of talk on the Internet about "what games would you like to
see most for the Lynx", etc. and two of the most (MOST) popular
responses were "Rescue on Fractalus" and "Ballblazer". Anchance
they'll see daylight? Also, what titles are forthcoming (dates?) for
teh Lynx?

 Wow, I'd rather see those titles for the Jaguar,
especially Rescue on Fractulus!! There aren't any plans to do those
games on the Lynx at this point. Rescue might be really tough to do,
because of the detail used to spot the Cannons in the canyons....could
be really hard to read. At this point, we have at least four Lynx
titles ready on the software end of things, but I don't have
manufacturing dates for them yet; Eye of the Beholder, Raiden,
Battlezone 2000, and Fat Bobby (no, it's not named after me!) Other
titles were working on incldue Missle Command, Super Asteroids, Road
Riot 4WD, and Alien Vs. Predator. Full Court Press, and Relief
Pitcher.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> That's a healthy list! Next we have Sir Fransis

<[Sir Fransis] K.DRAKE> Do you think it possible that sometime next
year (after the chip integration) we will see an integrated Jaguar/CD
setup? With varied pack-in's? eg Movie Set w/MPEG cart, Action Set
w/AvP?

 I'd be surprised if we went with a Jag/CD integrated
setup. There is still a very healthy market for cartridges on all
platforms. The pack ins certainly have the potential to change, and
we are looking at Movies/Videos with an MPEG cart.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Shadow is back, Bob!

<[Shadow] D.VANTREASE> RE: on-line offers, some are disappointed
because 1) no confirmation of order, 2) no replies to private e-mail,
and 3) no activity from Atari in the RT. Also, Atari told me my T2K
was sent last Monday, but 'rumor' says theyve been delayed. Not to
discourage on-line offers... WE LOVE UM!! Any comments?

 Hi Shadow! We were flat SWAMPPED and OVERWHELMED with the
online offers. Don Thomas was able to respond to most of the people
that wrote to him, but I got HUNDREDS of letters...far too many for me
to be able to respond to. I've been working very hard with the
Magazines of late, so I haven't had quite as much time for the RT as
I'd like to. I'll be online quite a bit this weekend and get caught
up. The delay in the T2K carts is really not a delay. The original
offer that was put out indicated that it might be as long as a month
before the orders were shipped. They should go out early next week,
so the delay is really only a couple of days.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Seventeen people in the queue, Bob. Next we have Rod
Martin from Network 22!

<[Network 23] R.MARTIN22> Please elaborate on the MPEG carts. Will 1
& 2 be seperate carts? Will the carts be usable with anything other
than CD-based movies?

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Thanks, Rod

 Rod since that product is still in development, I really
can't comment on it. My understanding is that it is an MPEG 2 cart.
I don't think we're doing both MPEG 1 and MPEG 2 carts.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> On to Davey....

<[Davey] D.HAUPERT> Ah, hello dar' Bob! My question is concerning
production times. I guess it took roughly 8 weeks for T2K to go
through manufacturing. I'm wondering if all games are going to take
about that long to produce. I know that at my job, we can get
different time frames for production of our boards for varying prices
;) So is Atari going to try and rush the production of games like AvP
so it won't be an 8 week production lag again? I'd like to know that
there isn't going to be another 2 month lull before the next game!

 Hi Davey, your figures are a little bit off, perhaps by
a week or two. It's hard for me to look into a crystal ball and guess
about some of those things in regards to production. For example,
Cybermorph was delayed a little bit because of problems with the
keyboard overlays for the game; the color was off at first, and then
the size of the overlay was too large. It was sitting up on the
controller. When those things happen, I think it's good business to
delay the production in order to correct those problems. We want to
be sure that our customers are happy with the products that they
purchase from us. So I guess that the answer is if everything goes
well, it won't take 8 weeks. But there are a number of different
companies involved with the production of the product; art, printing,
roms, cart assembly, art work, etc.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Gary is next, Bob

<[Gary] G.DULLECK> I've yet to see the Jag displayed well at a store.
What is Ataris policy on getting kiosks into stores. Also what game is
due out next and when (for the jag) ?

<[Lou] ST.LOU> From deep in the heart of Texas, here's JL Battey!
 Gary, we are making some very nice kiosks for the stores
to use to display their Jaguars. They were used at CES to display all
of the games, and include stereo speakers, and a secure method for
displaying the Jaguar to minimize the risk of theft, and yet be
attractive, and utilitarian. They are available for order, and can be
ordered from us now!! We have several Jaguar games under development
at this point, Club Drive looks like it is the furthest one along at
this point.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> JL.... ya' been introduced already so speak up! :-)

<[I.DOTTER] J.BATTEY1> The folks at Incredible Universe in Dallas &
Arlington say they have "stacks" of Jaguars. Any idea when the tv ads
will start in this market so they can sell a few more of them? (PS:
Their display of the unit is not real good.) GA

 Stacks of Jaguars??? Really???? Have you seen them???

<[Lou] ST.LOU> JL, you can talk again....

<[I.DOTTER] J.BATTEY1> It's a 20 mile drive, I only quote what they
said on the phone.

 The TV ads are running again, I'm afraid that I don't
have the media list on hand to tell you when the ads will be in Texas.
I can assure you that we also have a very liberal co-opt program for
retailers that are carrying the Jaguar. 20 miles? Isn't that just
'down the road a piece' in Texas? :-)

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Lancer is back... Then Sam.

<[Lancer] S.FOSKETT> Bob, my second question is about Atari's computer
software developments of late: I know that SpeedoGDOS has been
updated to 4.2 and the AES is up to 4.1 and the new MultiTOS is in the
hands of developers. So when will Atari Corp be releasing these bits?
I I'm not too happy to pay Compo $20 for some Speedo bug fixes...
(also, Nobody Beats The Wiz in Conn really DOES have stacks of Jags!)

 We've authorized COMPO software to do the release of
Speedo 4.2 Lancer. We don't have a firm release date on the AES or
MultiTOS at this point.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Sam Rapp is here!

<[Sam_030] SAM-RAPP> Hi Bob! Can you give us a rundown on the next
half dozen Jag games to be released with approximate dates? Also,
can you update us on Computer status at Atari? What happend to all
those Falcon games? I just plugged in T2000! Wow!

 Hey Sam! How are ya???

<[Sam_030] SAM-RAPP> Still looking for a T-shirt, but fine!

 Re the next Jaguar games; bear in mind that I don't have
any of the third party info on hand, just titles that we're looking
for. from our producers; Checkered Flag II, Club Drive, Kasumi Ninja
(which is really lookin' nice!) and AvP are the closest to completion.
Re the computer status; we're really trying to make sure that we focus
on the Jaguar right now, Sam. All of our efforts are going toward
that. In order for Atari to prosper, we need for the Jaguar to be
done the right way. I'll see what I can find out about the Falcon
games.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> The esteemed Charles S. Smeton of STraight FAX fame is
next.

 Bob, earlier tonight you were asked about selling
Falcons in chain stores. Why do you feel that this would not be
successful? What is it about the Falcon and other Atari computers that
would prevent it from successfully being sold in this manner? ga

<[Lou] ST.LOU> I will have to put a hold on any other /RAIses at this
time. There are too many in queue for the time we have left. If
things go real quick, I will let everyone know that we can take more
questions. There are 17 waiting....

 Hi Charles, well for one thing it would require a
tremendous investment in advertising and marketing. Those dollars at
this point would be better spent on the Jaguar, which looks to be a
big hit, than the Falcon. While there are a number of compelling
applications on the Falcon for musicians, the mainstream hasn't been
as successful. Also, stores like Sears although they carry computers,
haven't always done as well in selling or demonstrating them.

 Thanks Bob, I just find that is is very strange that a
year ago the Falcon was released and now, it is computer-non-gratta at
Atari Why not put a Falcon flyer in all Jaguar boxes?

 Educating the sales people in why Atari computers would
be a better choice for their customers would be a huge task, and
frankly...I'm not sure if we would be successful in educating them.
Even with the Jaguar, we find that some of the retailers have problems
doing much more than saying "Yes, we have it. The price is x" or "No,
we don't have it."

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Clint is next, then Jason, Chris, Scott, James and
Tony....

 I don't share your view that the Falcon is computer non
gratta at Atari. Having an insiders view of Atari, I know what our
resources are, and if we are to be successful, we must focus
carefully.

<[CLINT/APE] C.SMITH89> Bob, have you heard what the first available
third party Jaguar game is going be? Anything you can tell us about
the significance of WMS Industries signing up?

 Clint, I missed the first part of your question. Can
you type it again?

<[CLINT/APE] C.SMITH89> Bob, have you heard what the first available
third party Jaguar game is going be? Anything you can tell us about
the significance of WMS Industries signing up?

 It's tough to say which third party game might be first.
I have seen some very nice stuff from id Software; Doom and
Wolfenstein both are coming along nicely. I've also heard that
Microprose is working on Gunship 2000. But I really can't say who will
be first. The signing of WMS Industries is very significant. They
are the leading arcade game manufacturer in the world. Some of the
finest arcade games, like NBA Jam, Mortal Kombat, and others have come
out on the Willaims platoform. This means that future Williams hits
can be readily ported to the Jaguar for home use.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Jason from NJ!

<[Jason] J.BRUNKEN1> HiBo,Eceletwok nTepes K! M hub RALYhrs t te urret
aeof elas forJg gms,doyuthnktha 50b he nd fteya i pssbe? Alo wati
hrutmserwokig n fo te aua?Mabea onecin with h icorsegae A

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Try that again, Jason....

<[Jason] J.BRUNKEN1> ook, hold on.. sorry

 whew, I thought I was really tired for a minute there!

<[Lou] ST.LOU> ;-)

<[Jason] J.BRUNKEN1> Great work on Tempest 2k Bob, my thumb really
hurts? Anyway, what is thrustmaster working on for the Jaguar?

 A controller for use with Jaguar Games, Jason.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> I think Jason wants to know if there is more news
since our last RTC? on Thrustmaster, that is...

 They just came on board about a month ago, we really
need to allow them some time for planning and production. It's also
appropriate for them to contact the other Jaguar devs at some of our
developer conferences to let them now about their products.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Chris from Alberta has been waiting to ask his
question....

<[Chris] C.KROWCHUK1> Hi Bob! I read somewhere that 1040STE's, MEGA
STE's and STACEY's were available, is this another April fool's gag or
is it for real? Also, what is Atari's position on modifications to the
Falcon, Warranty? Such as hard drives, ram upgrade and boards etc.

 I'm afraid that's an April Fools Gag by someone, Chris.
Sorry about that. Check with JAMES-GRUNKE here on GEnie regarding the
warranty. I know that he was very interested in trying to retain the
warranty for some of the ram upgrades if they were dealer installed.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Scott has a second question....

 I don't know that I raised my hand>. but I'll ask.. Does
Atari have any kiosks in any retail stores?

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Ooops, Scott left

 Hi Bill! We've just now made the kiosks available for the
dealers, so you will probably have them in RSN. We have one in the
lobby here at Atari if you want to stop by and see it. (Bill is local
to us, gang!)

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Lucky Bill! James Vogh is next....

<[James] J.VOGH> Bob, do you have any info on Star Raiders 2000 yet?
ga

 Not yet, James. They must be hiding the programmer from
me, I haven't seen it yet!! Sorry!!

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Tony Wetmore....

 Hiya Bob! I have a real easy question, then a follow-up to
an earlier question... (1) How many players can you link up in DOOM?
(2) I noticed how you quite deftly side-stepped Sam Rapp's question
earlier about the release dates for the next set of Jag games... Could
you give those estimated dates/quarters?

 Hi Tony, I've only seen two players on DOOM so far.
I'll have to check with the developers to see how many can link up.
Re the game delivery dates....oh, I don't think I was _that_ deft. I
would just rather underpromise and over deliver. Which is something
we haven't been very good at over the years. But if you're really
going to push me.... I would say that there looks to be a good list of
games coming out in the May-June timeframe.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Iver heads up the next list....

<[Iver] I.POSSEHL1> This question comes from a long term friendly
supporter, but it has an edge :-> Bob - Here is a theory I have on
buying a Jaguar. When the machine and games are available in my
retail community, then I will buy it. Why should I drive 200+ miles or
go mail order for a game I have not seen or been able to check out
first hand? What can you say to reduce my fear of becoming an Atari
loner again?

 May I ask what area of the country you are in?

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Sell you a PC? :-)

<[Iver] I.POSSEHL1> Minnesota N. Dakota

 You shouldn't have to drive 200 miles to purchase a
Jaguar. We have already gone National with Electronic Boutique and
Babbages. Soon, Toys R Us will also be on a national basis with us as
well. We also have distributors selling the products to independent
retailers throughout the US. Those same distributors are also selling
the Jaguar into Canada as well.

 As far as buying mail order, that's an evaluation that
you have to make. Many companies conduct mailorder business in a fine
fashion, such as STeve's Software in California, or TOAD Computers in
Maryland. It is a perfectly viable way of doing business. You are
the only one that can decide if you are comfortable with doing that.
Many people are. As far as a concern about being an "Atari loner"
again....I suggest your friend check out some of the latest video
games magazines. I don't get a sense from any of them that the Jaguar
is going to be anything other than a success.

<[Iver] I.POSSEHL1> Believe it or not The closest EB, Babbages, TRU
IS 200 miles away in Minneapolis.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> On to Dan Iacovelli....

<[Dan I] D.IACOVELLI1> Hi Bob,Does Atari have any plans for either
light gun games (like mad dog ) or even a light gun for the Jag?

 Even publications like Electronic Gaming Monthly, which
can hardly be described as friendly to Atari, have been very favorable
in their coverage of the Jaguar, especially Tempest 2000. (Sorry Lou,
still finsihing my answer to the last question)

<[Lou] ST.LOU> My error. GA, Bob.

 If your friend is 200 miles from major retailers like
EB, TRU, and Babbages, may I ask what major retailers are close to
him? Feel free to send me an answer in email. On to Dan's
question... Actually, yes we do Dan. We have already tested a light
gun with the Jaguar, and since we signed up American Laser Masters
(who is doing Mad Dog) there will be a light gun available.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Paul Blagay, then Scott...

<[Paul] P.BLAGAY> Any news on 486 boards, etc for the Falcon. I heard
that Wizztronics was making one, along with CompoBTW. Everyone who
played my Tempest loved it. If Tempest was on TV then I know it will
sell Jags for sure. It sold 2 to work mates already. Any plans?PS. How
about getting HudsonSoft to do Super Bomberman on the Jag? :)Thanks.

 Hi Paul! Here on GEnie, I believe that COMPO has already
indicated in their BB CAT/TOPIC that they are working on a 486 board
for the Falcon. The product that Wizztronics is working on isn't a
486 board, it's an 040 board for the Falcon. And you're right,
Tempest will help sell Jaguars. We've got a new commercial in the
works for it. First tape came in late yesterday.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> OK, Scott at FIZSOFT

<[Scott] FIZSOFT> In the current mags there are Jaguar adds that have
a couple of pictures of Checkered Flag II. The pictures look
disappointing I was expecting a Virtual Racing KILLER! P.S. A little
texture mapping and or different viewing angles might do the trick.

 Scott, a lot of people told me that the pics for Tempest
weren't that hot either, but they LOVE the game. Don't worry,
Checkered Flag isn't finished yet, and you'll be pleased!!

<[Lou] ST.LOU> There are 7 people in line but Bob is willing to spend
some extra time here. I will take 5 more /RAIses! Sir Fransis is
next!

<[Sir Fransis] K.DRAKE> Have you spoke with any developers who are
seriously considering a cart/CD combo release? (Also, make sure that
any Atari nvRAM doesn't act like on that "other" machine :)

 Yes, there are some talks about that, Kenneth. Also,
there is some discussion about having a cart game, and then following
up with a CD version of the product that would work with the cart as
well.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Davey has a 2nd question. Then Rod Martin

<[Davey] D.HAUPERT> Hello again, Bob. What's the scoop on Kick off 3?
I heard that it was featured in a British Mag. Also, can WMS develop
MK and NBA Jam for Jag?

 One of our UK developers is the author of Kick Off, and
it should come as no suprise that the British are "quite keen" on
having a good Soccer game for the Jaguar.

Re MK and NBA Jam; my understanding is that they have a license with
Akklaim that runs thru the end of this year for those products. So,
either at the end of the year they can do it, or they could do an MK
III or NBA Jam II before then. Please don't interpret that as an
indication that they are in fact doing those new titles, though.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Rod Martin

<[Network 23] R.MARTIN22> Should retailers like Babbage's have
problems getting games/units for sale? The local Babbage's never has
enough Jag stuff to display, so not many people know it's here! They
say they get one or two games in and they usually are ones pre-
ordered. They've never had any Jag stuff on display.

 No, they shouldn't. In fact, in view of a comment made
earlier tonight about one retailer having "stacks" of Jaguars, I'm
confused about what's going on.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Time to go on the road again, Bob? 

 I don't know if those guys in Texas are just trying to
get JL to drive the 20 miles to their store , Or if Babbages is
just better at sellin' Jaguar than thos fellas down in Texas.

<[Network 23] R.MARTIN22> If it makes any difference, I'm in
Springfield Illinois. Whenever I ask...

  Maybe I'll have Barry Switzer take a look for me.

<[Network 23] R.MARTIN22> about the Jag stuff, they pull things out
of the back room!

 Is the Babbages in Springfield?

<[Network 23] R.MARTIN22> Yes, in White Oaks Mall.

 I'll call them on Tuesday. We'll chat.

<[Network 23] R.MARTIN22> Thanks!

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Dave Shorr

<[Dave] D.SHORR> Sega will be bringing the arcade home with titles
such as Virtua Racing and Virtua Fighter; will there be any Atari
coin-op games that use the Jaguar chipset?

 Yes, there are plans for that. Also, Sega's version of
"bringing the arcade home" is on a 16-bit system, which isn't close
of what the arcade power is.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Scott is back in line with another ?

<[Scott] FIZSOFT> Any word on any RPGs for the Jag?

 Yes, but I can't talk about them yet. Sorry.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Shadow's turn....

<[Shadow] D.VANTREASE> Hi again, Bob! I just heard about a "Shadow"
JagCD game coming (based on the upcoming movie). Can you tell us some
details on this game? And are you pursuing LucasArts (or whomever) to
get "X-Wing" on the Jag/JagCD? And lastly, on a technical note, are
MPEGs "interactive" (ie. in a _game_), or are they display-only?

 This is the first that I have heard about a Shadow game.
Sorry, I have _zero_ information on this one. Re the MPEGs....I just
don't know. I'll check with our guys and get back to you.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> We have a very interesting question coming up next,
Bob. Here is Steve Elek again....

<[Steve@Sears] S.ELEK> Bob, as a Sears Office Center Account
Executive at University Park Mall, Mishawaka, Indiana, I don't agree
with your evaluation of Atari's potential at Sears. You'd be
surprised as to how many of us are computer owners that know computers
inside and out. We'd love to sell Atari! Please don't be bashful in
getting Sears back into the Atari fold. Since the JAG will be coming
to Sears, the Atari computers should too. More of a statement than a
question.!!

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Steve, what Atari computer do you own and use?

<[Steve@Sears] S.ELEK> Mostly the 1040ST but also have the 800 and 130XE.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Bravo! Thanks

 Hi Steve, I appreciate the fact that things might be
different in your store. However, I don't base my beliefs on just
sitting behind a chair. I've been in Sears stores before looking at
their comptuer products, and it's not been a rewarding experience. I
can say the same for our local WalMart, too. We also went to other
retailers here in the Bay Area, like Macy's, when Commodore placed the
Amiga in there. The machines were never properly demoed, they were
often crashed (ok, so it was an Amiga), and the sale staff was less
than helpful. Very often, if you knew what you wanted, you could buy
it. But that was really about it. Even the local Montgomery Wards
does a very poor job of retailing computer products IMHO. I own a
Star printer, and went there for supplys at Stars suggestion. You
would have thought that they would have inventory, and knowledgeable
sales staff. That was not the case.

<[Steve@Sears] S.ELEK> Bob, Sears introduced the Office Center
concept in April 1993 at our store in confunction with Fort Wayne. It
is a very different environment. Come see one that placed 10th and
11th in sales out of 798 Sears stores last year in June and July.

 They'd never heard of the printer that I owned, or knew
what supplies I needed. Steve, I think you've just proven that your
store is truly exceptional! I think we can all agree that Mishawka
isn't the 10th or 11th biggest city, so why are their sales so high?
The staff is the key there! Congratulations on doing such a great
job!!

<[Lou] ST.LOU> I agree! Now we have Tony Wetmore then 3 more

<[Tony] WETMORE> Any idea when we can expect some sports games for the
Jaguar (hockey and football, mostly), so I can retire my antiquated
Sega Genesis? [;-) [Oh yeah, Tempest 2000 RULES! What's Jeff Minter
doing now, other than sipping margaritas in the Islands?]

 Actually, Jeff is back home in the UK, and is starting to
frequent the onlines. I'm going to try to get him on here. :)

<[Tony] WETMORE> (that's AMERICAN "football" naturally )

 Re the sports titles, we had a problems with the
developer that was doing the Football game for us, so we had to cancel
that contract. We're now looking at another developer, as well as at
a version of Troy Aikman Footabll that another developer (TradeWest I
think) is doing. The various titles that we licensed from Accolade
are in the process of being signed out to other software houses, so
we're looking forward to getting that done, and the coding started. ga

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Mr. Atariophile is next!

 Bob, when might we get the Lynx games featured in the recent
two-for-one promotion? Thanks for the call. I appreciate the
personal touch! --Michael

 Hi Michael, our shipping time is typically 5-10 business
days via UPS ground after the order has been entered. I'll look in to
your order on Tuesday (we're closed on Monday) and see what's up.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Rob Zalischuck is next

<[Robert] R.ZALISCHUK> ouch Lou, only 1 c :)

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Sorry 'bout that :-)

<[Robert] R.ZALISCHUK> Bob, is it unreasonable to expect Atari to use
the Jaguar promotions to piggyback *computer* promotion even if it is
only a brochure?

 I don't think it will be inappropriate in the future,
Robert. I do think that it's a problem now. I know I'm not telling
you what you want to hear about this. However, it's important for you
to accept what I'm telling you: we need to focus on the Jaguar. If we
lose focus on it, we will have big problems. It is not our intent to
abandon the computer business. However, we must be successful with
the Jaguar, which means doing the right things in the right way at the
right time. Things like the quick replacement of the defective RF
switches are possible because of our focus. Getting quality
developers up and running on the Jaguar is possible because of our
focus. We must retain that.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Our last question of the night comes from Travis Guy at
Atari Explorer Online.

<[F-S-U!] AEO.MAG> Bob, Happy Holidays to you and to yours. Two quick
questions. One, has Checkered Flag II's name been changed to "Redline
Racing" or was Juli joking? Next, will American Laser Masters be
producing a light gun for the Jaguar theirselves, or will that come
from someone else? That's the first we've heard about Mad Dog McCree
for the Jaguar - it's good to see a lot of "head to heads" with 3DO
softs.

 Hi Travis, Happy Holidays to you...hope the Easter Bunny
brings you lots of good stuff! We're kicking around a number of things
with Checkered Flag II. Redline Racing, some kind of sponsored Indy
race car game, and a few other things. I haven't seen Juli's
post....and she will joke around from time to time. But I've heard the
name Red Line Racing mentioned a few times. Not sure about the light
gun, my understanding was that some production light gun was tried out
and worked. I'm not sure who the manufacturer was of the gun. My
personal feeling is that the gun is really needed for a game like Mad
Dog to be a success.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> If I may pop one question.... does Sunnyvale have
supplies of 804 drums and toner on hand? Third party suppliers are
getting ridiculous! 500 CDN for a drum!

 I believe that we do, Lou. You might also want to check
with Lasertek at 800-252-7374. I met with them at COMDEX in '92 and
they had a good supply of those products then. Drums have always been
pricey.

<[Lou] ST.LOU> Thanks for the tip... In closing I would like to thank
Bob for joining us from his home on this holiday evening. I am sure
you treasure family time and we appreciate your effort in attending
tonight. As usual, lots of Jaguar news but it's obvious that the folks
around here are not ready to give up on their Atari _computers_! I
would also like to wish you advanced congratulations on your upcoming
BIRTHDAY! Rumour has it that you hit a new decade on Monday! Thanks
also to all our attendees, especially the newcomers. I hope you make
this a regular stop on the first Friday of every month. Finally,
thanks to everyone who asked questions. You all did a marvellous job!
Over to you, Bob!

 As always, I have enjoyed our session of Dateline:
Atari.  I hope that everyone enjoyed my opening Aril Fools remarks. I
had more, but decided that the file was big enough...and Ron Luks
might not have had a very good sense of humor. :-) Although I'm not
telling many of our customers what they want to hear about our
computer line, I want to assure you that I personally share your
views: Atari Computers remain my personal machines of choice!! And
you're corrct, Lou. Monday I hit 40! Atari is allowing me to start
that decade off by taking the day off.  Thanks to all of your
for taking the time to come tonight, and don't forget to change your
clocks this weekend!! Goodnight!

/|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\ /|\

Our next session of Dateline Atari will be held on Friday, May 6st
at 10:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Real Time Conferences in the Atari ST
RoundTable are held every Monday (Desktop Publishing and Graphics) and
Wednesday (Open House) night at 10:00 p.m. and a HelpDesk is available
evry Sunday at 9:00 p.m. On the first and third Thursday there is a
Programmer's RTC at 9:00 p.m.

If you miss a conference, transcripts are made for all formal RTC's
(where there is a special guest) and the programming RTC. You will
find these transcripts in Library 13 - Atari Archives.

Please send your questions, suggestions and comments to RTC$ via
GEmail. Thank you.


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   Jaguar Tackboard
 |||   Confirmed information about Atari's Jaguar
/ | \  Compiled from online and official sources
       -----------------------------------------------------------------

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Independent Association of Jaguar Developers
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The IAJD (Independent Association of Jaguar Developers) has started
accepting members on GEnie. The IAJD is a private group where
confidential discussions can be freely held. (Category 64 of the ST
RoundTable is the IAJD meeting place.) Consequently, membership in the
IAJD is limited to Jaguar developers who are registered with Atari
Corp. To apply for membership, send EMail to ENTRY$ on GEnie (or
 if you're not on GEnie). Regular EMail
correspondence with the IAJD should be sent to IAJD$ (again, or
 if you're not on GEnie).


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Developer / Game List 1.7
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

//// Editor: The following developers, licensees and game titles have
been confirmed to the best of AEO's ability as of April 2, 1994.
Entries in the "S"tatus column reflects any "e"rrors, "u"pdates, "n"ew
titles, or new "d"evelopers since the last AEO list. The "?" entry
represents developers or titles that once were confirmed, but are now
in questionable status. Titles in brackets (e.g., [Cybermorph]) have
been completed and are available in the US. AEO ratings have been
added to the list. A key to the ratings follows.

Park Place Productions appears to be no more - therefore, I've pulled
their name from these listings.

                            1-10        Titles
S Developer/Licensee       Rating  under development
" """"""""""""""""""       """"""  """""""""""""""""
  21st Century Software       -    Pinball Fantasies
  3D Games
  Accent Media Productions
  Accolade                    -    Al Michaels Announces Hardball
                              -    Brett Hull Hockey
                              -    Busby in Clawed Encounters
                                          of the Furried Kind
                              -    Charles Barkley Basketball
                              -    Jack Nicholas Golf
  Activision                  -    Return to Zork CD-ROM
u All Systems Go              -    Hosenose and Booger CD-ROM
u                             -    Jukebox - cart multiplexer
d American Laser Masters      -    Mad Dog McCree
  Anco Software Ltd.          -    Kick Off 3
                              -    World Cup
  Anthill Industries
  Argonaut Software           -    Creature Shock CD-ROM
                                   (For Virgin)
  Atari Corp.                 -    Battlezone 2000
                              -    Chaos Agenda CD-ROM
                              -    Club Drive
                              5    [Crescent Galaxy]
                              -    MPEG 1 and 2 carts
                              -    Star Raiders 2000
                              -    Tiny Toons Adventures
                              -    VR Helmet
                                   MORE
  Atari Games Corp.
  Attention to Detail         -    Battlemorph: Cybermorph 2 CD-ROM
                              -    Blue Lightning CD-ROM
                              7    [Cybermorph]
                                   (For Atari)
  Audio-Visual Magic
  Bethesda Softworks
  Beyond Games Inc.           -    Battlewheels
                              -    Ultra Vortex
  Black Scorpion Software
  Bjorn Joos/Kris Van Lier
  Borta & Associates
  Brainstorm                  -    [x86 Jaguar Development System]
n Bullfrog Productions Ltd.   -    Syndicate
n                             -    Theme Park
                                   (For Ocean)
  Clearwater Software
  Computer Music Consulting
  Cybervision
  CyberWare
  Delta Music Systems Inc.
  Dimension Technologies
  Domark Group Ltd.
  DTMC
  Duncan Brown
  Elite
  E-On
  Eurosoft
  EZ Score Software Inc.
  GameTek Inc.
  Genus Microprogramming Inc.
  Gremlin Graphics Ltd.       -    Zool 2
                              -    UNKNOWN TITLE (racing) - MORE?
  H2O Design Corp.
  Hand Made Software          -    Kasumi Ninja
                                   (For Atari)
  High Voltage Software
  Hisoft
  ICD Inc.                    -    Cat Box (AV & comm expansion box)
  id Software                 -    Doom: Evil Unleashed
                              -    Wolfenstein 3D
  Imagineer Company Ltd.
  Imagitec Design Inc.        6    [Evolution Dino-Dudes]
                              6    [Raiden]
n                             -    Freelancer 2120 CD-ROM
  Interplay                   -    BattleChess CD-ROM - MORE?
  Jaleco
  Krisalis Software Ltd.      -    Soccer Kid
  Limelight Media Inc.
u LlamaSoft                  10    [Tempest 2000]
                                   (For Atari)
n                             -    MORE MINTER!
  Loricel S.A.
  Manley & Associates Inc.
  Maxis Software
  Microids                    -    Evidence
                              -    Commando
  Microprose                  -    Gunship 2000 - MORE SIMULATIONS
  Midnite Software Inc.       -    Car Wars
                              -    Dungeon Depths
  Millenium Interactive Ltd.
  NMS Software Ltd.
n Ocean Software Ltd.         -    (Movie title "The Shadow") CD-ROM
n                             -    Apes--- - MORE
  Phalanx                     -    Phong 2000
  Photosurrealism             -    Galactic Gladiators
  PIXIS Interactive
  ReadySoft Incorporated      -    Dragon's Lair CD-ROM
                              -    Dragon's Lair II CD-ROM
                              -    Space Ace CD-ROM
  Rebellion Software Ltd.     -    Alien vs. Predator
                              -    Checkered Flag II
                              -    Legions of the Undead
                                   (For Atari)
  Rest Energy
  Sculptured Software Inc.
  Silmarils                   -    Robinson's Requiem
  Software Creations
  Team Infinity
  Team 17 Software Ltd.
  Tecnation Digital World
  Techtonics
  Telegames                   -    Brutal Sports Football
                              -    Casino Royale
                              -    European Soccer Challenge
                              -    Ultimate Brain Games - MORE?
  Teque London Ltd.
  Thrustmaster
  Tiertex Ltd.
  Titus
  Tradewest                   -    Double Dragon 5
                              -    Troy Aikman Football - MORE?
  Trimark Interactive
  U.S. Gold Ltd.              -    Flashback
  UBI Soft International      -    Jimmy Connors Pro Tennis - MORE
  V-Reel Productions          -    Arena Football
                              -    Horrorscope
  Virgin Interactive
       Entertainment Ltd.     -    UNKNOWN ("Movie title")
  Virtual Xperience           -    Indiana Jags
                              -    Zozziorx - MORE?
  Virtual Xperience
  Visual Concepts
  Williams Brothers
  WMS Industries


Pts Stars  AEO Ratings
""" """""  """""""""""
 10 *****  GAMING NIRVANA!!! - You have left reality behind... for good.
  9 ****+  Unbelieveable GAME!! - Your family notices you're often absent.
  8 ****   Fantastic Game!! - You can't get enough playtime in on this.
  7 ***+   Great Game! - Something to show off to friends or 3DOers.
  6 ***    Good game - You find yourself playing this from time to time.
  5 **+    Ho-hum - If there's nothing else to do, you play this.
  4 **     Waste of time - Better to play this than play in traffic.
  3 *+     Sucks - Playing in traffic sounds like more fun.
  2 *      Sucks Badly - You'd rather face an IRS audit than play this.
  1 +      Forget it - ... but you can't; it's so badly done, it haunts you.
  0 -      Burn it - Disallow programmer from ever writing games again.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Jaguar Quotes
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

//// Don Thomas <75300.1267@compuserve.com> annouces the availability
     of Jaguar kiosks for commercial use:

[] As noted a few weeks ago, Atari has an elaborate hands-on display
   designed for in-store use. It looks a lot like an arcade machine
   and houses the Jaguar as well as stereo speakers a monitor, cables,
   controller and more. It comes complete with exception to the Jaguar
   itself.

   A lot of people asked about this unit in E-Mail and at that time I
   didn't have any literature on it. I do now.

   This unit is NOT intended for end users and is NOT inexpensive. In
   some situations I can see it to be very economical though. I could
   easily see it being used in a Dentist's office or any other
   professional waiting area. It would be nice in rec rooms or in many
   clubs and organizations.

   If you have a SERIOUS interest in purchasing this, I wuld be happy
   to send specifications. Send a SASE to:

    Atari Corporation
    P.O. Box 61657
    Sunnyvale, CA

    Simply ask for the stand-up display fact sheet.


//// Mike Fulton <75300.1141@compuserve.com> shares his views on
     video frame rates:

[] The frame rate at which a game updates its screen doesn't
   necessarily correspond in a particular way to the television or
   monitor's frame rate.  In fact, ideally the game's screen refresh
   _should not_ be tied to the television's frame rate, because
   otherwise the game plays differently on different types of TV sets.

   And a TV really does do 60 frames per second, although a broadcast
   TV signal is only 30 frames per second.  Televisions use a method
   called interlacing to increase the apparent vertical resolution of
   the image.  The electron gun of a picture tube paints the display
   60 times per second, but it can only display about 262 lines of
   vertical resolution in each frame, which isn't really very good.  A
   broadcast TV signal wants to have about 525 lines of vertical
   resolution, so what they do is have the signal show only 30 frames
   per second, but each frame is broken down into two 'fields'.  One
   field contains all the odd-numbered scanlines for a frame, and the
   next field contains all the even-numbered scanlines.  Each field is
   displayed in one of the picture tube's 60hz frames, and the result
   is that the eye sees a higher resolution picture than you'd
   otherwise get.

   Interlacing is a tricky thing, however, and if you have significant
   differences in brightness or color between one scanline and the
   next in the same frame, you get a flickering effect on screen
   because the same part of the screen is changing back and forth 60
   times per second.  You don't notice this much in regular TV stuff
   because they use tricks like anti-aliasing to get around it.
   However you do see it in some instances, like in the overlay
   lettering for some mail or phone-order commercials.

   So while a regular broadcast TV signal is only 30 distinct images
   per second, each image is actually using 2 frames of the picture
   tube.  I don't know for sure if this works on a TV, but I suspect
   that if you don't interlace your signal this way, and settle for
   lower resolution, you can get the full 60 frames per second.

   I don't know what the actual frame rate of Wolfenstein 3D on the
   Jaguar is, but I do know they had to slow it down to keep you from
   running into the walls.  We got a new, higher-resolution version
   today and it's looking pretty good.  You also have to consider that
   the Jaguar can connect to higher quality monitors as well as
   televisions.


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// JagDaptor Announced - PR
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The ultimate game machine - the Jaguar Interactive Multimedia System
from Atari - has just been granted a new range of versatility...
through the introduction of the JagDapter. The JagDapter allows the
Jaguar to interface completely with a wide range of video and audio
peripherals - maximizing the gaming experience for consumers in a way
other systems simply cannot. The JagDapter features -

   * Composite video AND stereo output (take video to tv and
                        the stereo to your amplifier or tv if
                        you have stereo tv)
   * Split composite signal capabilities for luma and chroma
                        (for older composite monitors)
   * RGB signal output (completely compatible with the Atari
                        SC1224 (color) and Atari SC1435 (stereo
                        color) monitors)
   * s-video output (for connection to s-video tvs)

This exciting new interface extends the connectivity of the Jaguar...
sealing its position as the Number One gaming system available to
consumers. And best of all, the JagDapter is completely affordable.

Boasting made-in-America quality and ingenuity, the JagDapter is
priced at just $49.95... making it a perfect add-on accessory for any
Jaguar owner. For the price of a single game, a Jaguar owner can
purchase the JagDapter and dramatically expand their gaming pleasure
and horizons.

The JagDapter is available now at local Jaguar dealers and
retailers, or can be ordered directly from Mark at:
        MARS Merchandising
        1041 E. St Charles Rd;
        Lombard, Illinois 60148
                (phone (708) 627-7462)

(Jaguar is a registered trademark of Atari Corp.)


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Get a Free APE on your back!
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Would you like to check out a FREE issue of the APE [Atari Power
Entertainment] Newsletter? All you have to do is give me your address.
You can GE-Mail the info to me at Genie via my address, C.SMITH89.
[Internet: c.smith89@genie.geis.com] If you don't have access to Genie
you can mail your free issue request to:

APE Newsletter
2104 North Kostner
Chicago,IL 60639

You'll be sent a free issue and a subscription form listing the back
issues of APE. Here's the special deal I mentioned earlier. When you send
me your address, mention that you read about it in APE Online. You'll
get $1 off the usual subscription rate plus you'll get to choose a free
back issue.


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   Jeff Minter - Stoked on the Jag
 |||   Interview conducted by: Tal Funke-Bilu
/ | \  GEnie: EXPLORER.5   Internet: tfunkebi@hmc.edu
       ----------------------------------------------------------------

//// Tal: Jeff, I first read your columns in ST Action about 6 or 7
     years ago... was the ST your first Atari love or were you a 2600
     man? (Or should I say "a 2600 Yak"?)

Jeff - When I was at University I blew quite a bit of one term's
grant on a VCS. Late nights playing Space Invaders and Superman... got
my Dad into games with that VCS: I brought it home one holiday and had
it set up on the TV with Space Invaders, when my dad came home, I
offered him a go and got the usual bollocks about 'I can't do those,
I'm too old'... I insisted he have a go and I didn't get a look at the
joystick for a couple of hours. My dad now has a Snes, a PC-Engine
CD-ROM, a Lynx, a Genesis, a Gameboy, an Atari ST, an Amiga, a
Vectrex, a Colecovision from way back, likewise an Intellivision, and
he'll have a Jag as soon as I can get him one, and he plays at least
three hours of games a day... but I digress.

The VCS was my first console, but for a long time all the programming
I was doing was on Commodore kit - from my first P-50 programmable
calculator, then the PET, then the Vic-20 and to the C64, it was
Commodore all the way.  Then I switched to the Atari ST, then the TT,
the Falcon, and finally the Jaguar. So I guess you'd have to say that
my first games love was Atari, but for programming it was Commodore,
and remained so until the Tramiels left.

//// How did the Yak get his start in programming? When did you first
     STart programming the ST?

Well, I started by writing games for my fellow students at college, on
the 8K PET they had, the old one with the little keyboard and the
built-in tape drive. You were allowed half an hour access a day,
which I'd spend frantically typing in hex pairs, execute, and then
trying to find out where it crashed... I got quite good at doing jump
offsets in hex in my head. I actually used to get up early (an
unheard-of thing) and stay late to get more time. Never sold any of
the games I made, but it was good practise having the games played by
a bunch of critical mates - you pretty soon learned about playability,
if a game sucked no-one would play it! After college I went to
university where I spent a year playing about on the college mainframe
and also on the obligatory ZX80, and definitely not much maths and
physics, which is what I was supposed to be doing; consequently I was
ejected after a year. Still figuring I ought to do the "right" thing,
I got a place on a polytechnic course (still maths and physics, but
with the option to switch to computing in the second year). However,
three months in I copped a pretty nasty virus and was ill for three or
four months, so I had to drop out of the course.

By then I had a Vic 20 and while I was in, I coded a fairly crude
Defender game called "Andes Attack", in which you had to protect
llamas instead of humanoids. At some point we decided to try to sell
the game, and under the name Llamasoft we went to a Commodore computer
show in London. We took a TV and my Vic and loaded up the game and let
people play. We were surprised when we sold out of games on the first
day... then this guy from a US outfit called Human Engineered
Software came by and asked me if I could do a ROM version for them to
sell in the States. That was the break which really got Llamasoft
started. I wrote a game for HES called Gridrunner which did pretty
well and we copped for a lot of royalties.

I got into the ST right when it first came out. At that time, I'd been
coding the C64 for a few years, and then the Amiga and ST both came
out, and they both looked pretty interesting. Commodore, however, had
a shitty attitude towards game programmers at the time; they wanted
the Amiga to be perceived as a business machine, so game programmers
didn't get invited to the previews, and it just didn't feel like they
wanted to help us get our hands on the new wonder-machine. Atari,
however, were most co-operative, and I had one of the first 30
machines to arrive in Europe.

//// At the time, what was the most inviting aspect of programming on
     the ST... what put it ahead of the competition?

Obviously, the speed was part of it, also proper colour pixel-
accessible graphics - characters and sprites are OK but they do
constrain you. I had started to work on the light synthesiser idea on
the C64, and the prospect of a good colour bitmapped display and a
mouse for input to the lightsynth was irresistable. The first ST
program I wrote was "Colourspace". As for being ahead of the
competition, well, at the time the Amiga was really overpriced - well
over a grand, I remeber - so the ST outsold it massively. I also found
that in my experience TOS/GEM just felt more solid than early
AmigaDOS/Workbench. Too many Guru Meditations for my liking.

//// In your ST Action columns you often bragged about your various
     Lynx high-scores or accomplishments.... Have you ever been
     tempted to sit down and develop for the Lynx? Is it a possibility
     in the future?

At the time it came out I would have killed to write Lynx games.
However Llamasoft wasn't a big enough company to sustain the cost of
developing and publishing our own games on ROM, and I didn't know of
any larger companies who would let me do the kind of games I wanted to
do - so I carried on with the ST. As for now, I guess Atari want me
chained to a Jag for awhile - and I can't say I'm complaining.

//// How do you feel about the state of video games today? 10 years
     ago there weren't flashy graphics or sound, just downright good
     gameplay. Where do you think we are going with all the FMV and
     stereo sound? Can a bad game cover up its flaws with flashy
     graphics and sound? Elaborate. (Easy for me to say.)

Well, I think that we're about to see a repeat of the old "laser game"
syndrome with the current obsession with FMV. Remember back in the mid
Eighties when everyone was predicting the demise of traditional
coin-ops in favour of the all-new "Laser Games" based on Videodisc
technology? Sure, the first time you saw one, it definitely made you
go "wow" to see real video in a game. Then you played the games and
found out that they were either traditional games superimposed over a
noninteractive background, or else they were simple affairs where
you'd make a series of decisions interspersed with noninteractive
video clips. You soon got bored; the laser-game era quietly passed
away. The key word in this context is "noninteractive".

Laserdisc and FMV alike are excellent media for watching films, just
like a VCR. However, the nature of games is the interactivity - the
creation of a little world within which you can do whatever you like,
constrained only by the rules of gameplay. Laserdisc, FMV and your VCR
are excellent at linear playback of pre-recorded scenes - but the only
degree of freedom you have is to say where playback starts or ends.
Sure, you can have different sections of video present themselves
according to certain player action, but you're never going to be able
to show every possible view for every possible player action even with
the storage capacity of CD. Since you can't show all the views, the
only option is to constrain the player's actions.

That is not to say that CD as a medium for games is bad - far from it.
The true advantage of CD is the immense data storage capacity. By
using a system like the Jaguar - capable of rendering detailed 3D
worlds which are fully interactive - with the CD-ROM to hold details
of levels, graphics of enemies, loads of tunes etc., etc. (and maybe a
couple of unintrusive FMV for breaks in the gameplay, scene-setting
etc.), it will be possible to design games with incredible depth and
detail, the like of which would never be possible on a ROM.

Games like this are the future, definitely not the constrained
stringing-together-of-film-clips type stuff you currently see so much
of on the Sega CD and 3DO. In a way I think that it's good that the
Jag *doesn't* have a CD-ROM drive straight away, as developers have to
concentrate on getting the most out of the Jag's hardware instead of
going down the route of "let's make a pretty game by spooling lots of
pre-rendered images off the CD-ROM, at least the screen pictures will
look good in the magazines." By the time Jag CD comes out, developers
will already know the power they've got in the Jaguar, and hopefully
won't want to waste that power by using it to emulate a VCR.

As for covering up bad gameplay with great graphics and sound, yes, it
goes on all the time. I think a lot of the reason people say "the old
games are the best" is that Way Back When, you had very limited
resources to play with in terms of RAM, colours onscreen, processor
power, etc. If you wanted someone to get addicted to your game you had
to put everything into the playability. Games such as Defender,
Asteroids, Missile Command and Tempest were not very large, but by
Ghod they were nigh-on perfectly balanced. The learning curve was
perfect, dedicated players could get really skillful, beginners
weren't too intimidated, there were no great discontinuities in the
gameplay... now, it seems that a lot of games just take an
off-the-shelf gameplay basis, like vertical-scroller, platform game,
yet-another-Rtype clone, etc., and dress it up with great graphics and
sound. I have a friend who works at Sega and I went round to see him
once and he showed me a lot of new Genesis stuff, and by the time I
saw the ninth R-Type, I was begging him to stop... in a lot of games
on current 16 bit systems players have *less* control than they did
in, say, Defender or Asteroids. Game design seems almost to have
become a forgotten art.

I think, and hope, that is going to change with the introduction of
high-powered systems like the Jag. Now that we have the power to
create fully-interactive 3D game scenarios, players will demand more
interaction; game designers are no longer constrained by limitations
of the hardware. Some people will just port the old formulas to the
new environment - Star Fox is only R-Type in 3D, you can't actually
fly anywhere you like. That's unlike Cybermorph, which gives you a
world and a craft to make your way around it and leaves the rest up to
you. At last game design is becoming important again. That's not to
say that in a year's time we will not be seeing "yet-another-DOOM" or
"yet-another-polygon-world", 'coz there will always be those who see a
successful game and clone it to the max; but I think that there will
also always be some people who want to do something entirely
different.

//// You are well known for your EXCELLENT adaptation of Tempest for
     the Jaguar in the form of Tempest 2000. When did you first hear
     about the Jag and what convinced you that it would be worth
     developing on?

I got invited to a Jag devcon in the UK at the end of '92, where we
were shown Jag for the first time. They had Tigercube (which has since
mutated to become the spinning Jaguar logo) and various demos of the
colour capabilities, spriting and Gouraud shading. I was interested
then, and they gave us the tech notes to take away and they made
interesting reading, but I didn't fully realise what Jag was actually
like until a few weeks later. Atari invited me out to Sunnyvale to
write some demos for the Jag. I remember the moment the penny dropped
- I was learning the blitter and I wrote this warp effect using only
the 68K and the blitter. I assumed that, as it was quite a nasty warp,
it would be a non-realtime effect - something you'd do once to a
bitmap and then display the result. I got it going, it ran, and warped
this image of a girlie I was using as source. Then Leonard came by and
said, how about putting it in a realtime loop? I said naaah, didn't
intend it to be realtime, but I put it in a loop that altered some
parameters and tried it out anyway... and it went in realtime - that
girlie was warping about like she was on a sheet of rubber, and I just
went F###! Then it just took over, the hardware sprite scaling, the
rotation, the shaded blitting, it just blew me away again and again.
At that point my soul belonged to Jaguar.

//// Let's be up front about this... I'm sure a lot of people would
     like it if you completed the following sentence and elaborated on
     the subject: "Programming on the Jag is soooo bloody fun because
     ______"

... you can politely ask the processors to do a billion insane things,
and they'll do them and still have time left over to make you a cup of
tea, do the laundry, nip down the shops and tidy the house, before the
next frame interrupt..

//// A lot of people want a cart or CD packed with a bunch of old
     classics... Defender, Phoenix, etc.... Are you going to be the
     man to bring those to life on the Jag? We know Joust is rumored
     to be an Easter egg in an upcoming release... are we going to see
     more old games hidden this way?

Depends on the individual developers I suppose. Nice idea, if you
have the spare memory and time in the schedule to fit them in.

//// OK Jeff, what game are you most looking forward to on the Jag?

Provided they can capture the essence of the original and transfer it
to 64-bit, definitely "Star Raiders".

//// What do you think of the statement "The Jag has the power to
     _REDEFINE_ video games..." ?

I think that could be true.. if a bit advertising-hypey... the Jag is
particularly exciting as it's the first console platform to offer
gaming satisfaction to two previously separate segments of the market
- the Nintendo/Sega area, where the emphasis is on cutesy, sprite-
based scrolly games, and the high-end gamer who until now has bought a
fast 486 with CD-ROM etc. to play polygon-based simulations and more
complex strategic games. The Jag can do better scrolly/spritey games
than the current 16-bitters, and we all know how good it is at doing
fast polygons.... Consequently, people who might turn their noses up
at Sega/Nintendo, who have a reputation for serving the 14+-year-old
market, may well buy a Jag, 'coz it's a lot cheaper than a top-end
486... so in this respect I can see Jag redefining the console market.

//// What's the story with Mollie and Flossie?

Molly and Flossie are my two pet sheep. Molly is bigger than Flossie,
but Flossie is better-looking. They both like a digestive biscuit
first thing in the morning, and bleat piteously outside the door if I
don't give. Flossie is the most friendly, she comes running over for a
scratch in the fleece every time I step outside. Have you heard the
sheep bleating in T2K?

//// Are they Molly and Flossie?

Sadly they're not. Imagitec obviously have me correctly pegged as an
ovophile and stuck some sheep bleating samples in the tune which
accompanies the Bacon. You never get to hear them in normal gameplay,
as the bonus level completes before the tune wraps, but if you pause
and press "A" for music volume adjust, you can hear it all the way
through. Needless to say I was well tickled by it when I first heard
the tunes!

//// Your personal best on Tempest?

While I was out at Atari, level 97, just over two million. Haven't
played daily recently as my Jag is running lightsynth all the time and
its a hassle loading it into the Romulator each time I want to play -
I still don't have a Tempest 2000 cartridge.

//// Do you feel the joypad lives up to the paddles of the arcade
     classic?

As well as it ever could. Nothing beats the original flywheel control,
but I think I got about as close as I could get with a joypad, to
giving you the same amount of control. It takes a little while to get
used to the way it accelerates and the orientation with respect to
circular webs, but it soon becomes instinctive.

//// Most annoying bug pointed out by the Tempest Beta-Testing team?

Definitely all the little bastardy glitches I had with the sounds.
You'd fix one, up comes another one. Oh yeah, and the dreaded
"locked-Pause" fatal I was *sure* I'd nailed about six times.... ;-)

//// Ever make it through Beastly Mode? Know anyone who has? :)

Nope; Level 97's me best. Hank at Atari Test got there the day after I
left. You're the only other guy I've heard of doing it, and I've
certainly not heard of anyone going double-Beastly. I honestly believe
that next time Atari Test are looking for a demon thumb they should
get in touch with you... double-Beasty in two weeks, that's going
some.

//// What does the Yak eat while he's coding?

Junkfood normally; I am largely fuelled by lakes of tea. I like liver
pate sandwiches for a snack, once a day I cook something, inasmuch as
the verb "to cook" can be applied to "getting something out the
freezer, putting it in the microwave, pressing the button and waiting
for it to go 'ding'". Which is not to say that I dislike good food;
just that, living alone I can rarely be asked to make it for myself.
If it takes longer to cook than it does to eat I don't bother....

//// What is your favorite type of tea?

Good, honest PG Tips. As the ad campaign says, "There's no other tea
to beat PG!" 

//// Your favorite Pink Floyd album?... Are you going to try and catch
     their world tour?

Ummm... difficult, I find that my favourite Floyd varies to suit my
current state of mind, but I guess overall probably Wish You Were
Here, although I do like "Meddle" very much (especially Echoes) and
The Wall when I'm feeling alienated....

//// Your all-time favorite video game (any platform?)

 ummm StarRaidersDefenderStarRaidersDefender...

Star Raiders. It's the only game I've ever had quite that feeling of
just joy at waking up in the morning and knowing I could play..

//// Lets wrap things up with a discussion on your future with the
     Jag. What is the scoop on your CD-lightshow? (Is that a proper
     name for it?) Where do you plan to go after that? What games are
     in the Jeff Minter coding line-up? Any last minute comments (the
     entire Atari community is waiting...)?

The lightsynth is called the Virtual Light Machine. I've been working
on lightsynth stuff since 1984 on various platforms. the Jag CD-ROM
lightsynth draws on that past expierence, using the best algorithms
from those earlier generations and applying Jag specialities to them,
like shaded poly drawing and digital feedback ("Melt-o-Vision", as
Atari call it). Parameters governing pattern generation may be
controlled by oscillators, modified by an audio spectrum analyser to
produce patterns which respond to the music from CD, and altered by
the "player", or any combination of the three, effectively allowing
you to "jam" in graphics along to your favourite music.

VLM is not a Llamasoft project; a few years ago I teamed up with a
couple of other guys who were also interested in the lightsynth idea,
and we formed the Virtual Light Company to develop our ideas (and we
formed the Co. a year and a half before Gibson's latest book came out,
BTW). The VLM is a VLC-developed program; I'm doing the graphics and
the very excellent Dr. Ian Bennett is doing the audio frequency
analysis, as his Maths is better than mine!

After the VLM, Atari have asked me to get involved in a team who are
doing a CD-ROM game, which I can't spill any beans about yet but which
should be really excellent, from the scenarios I've read. And no, it's
not going to be simulating a VCR. After that I'd like to do another
complete game myself, I have yet to talk to John at Atari about what,
I know I'd kill to do to Defender what I did to Tempest, or else do
Super Llamatron... hey if Sega can have a flipping hedgehog why can't
Atari have a llama, especially a laser-spitting take-no-prisoners
bad-ass rock hard llama? 

//// Thank you for your time... I wish you all the success in the
     world with your upcoming endeavors... if they are half as good as
     Tempest, I'm sure we'll all be pleased!

No problem... I'll do me best... I just hope I can follow Tempest!

\
(:-)  - loop: Play that Floyd again
/             jr loop
              drink tea                   ;** branch optimisation

//// Ahhh... nothing like a nice cup of root beer.

P'fffaaggh bleuuuchh eeuuurghhh.


                            --==--==--==--==--


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                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   Waiting for Tempest
 |||   By: Tal Funke-Bilu
/ | \  GEnie: EXPLORER.5   Internet: tfunkebi@hmc.edu
       ----------------------------------------------------------------

O.K... by now enough of you have rushed out and purchased Tempest
2000. If you haven't then, well, I'm sorry, but you are missing out.
I don't mean to be harsh, but that is the blatant truth. It's probably
not your fault. You might have been number three on the waiting list
and the store only got two in. You might be waiting for your pre-order
from Atari to arrive on your doorstep. In any case, you are missing
out. Not only are your missing out on a great game, you are missing
out on a _REVOLUTION_. Sure, you will be able to join this revolution
in a few days, but for now you have to sit back and read numerous
posts, all saying how great this game that you don't have is.

Why do I torture you like this? I mean, I've already completed Tempest
2000... in Beastly Mode. I'm practically bored with the cart...(well,
maybe not), but you don't have it yet. BECAUSE YOU ARE THE LUCKY ONES.
You own a Jag now! You are waiting a couple extra days for what will
be the most intense home-arcade-action EVER in the history of gaming.
And you will have it in your hands... you won't have to gawk at your
friend's machine... you won't have to regret forking over $700 to get
a machine that can't even display floors and ceilings (read Monster
Manor)... you won't have to wait weeks to get A JAG ITSELF. You
already have your console. You have in your posession the most
powerful arcade machine ever to make it to the home market...and it
will stay that way for at least another two and a half to three years
before anything comes out that could even be considered a rival in
power and price to the JAG.

So what are you whining about? Go back and play Cybermorph one more
time, and when you do that, you might even to laugh a little,
considering that game began development well over a year ago. Get a
little extra work done around the house/dorm/apartment, cause when
this cart gets in your Jag, you won't take it out for a LOOOONG time.

Oh, and here's a personal challenge to all the people reading this
article and grinning, knowing they have spent the last couple hours
spinning around a web: 2,668,015 points. I completed Beastly Mode in
under two weeks. If any of you pull this off, I'll let you in on one
or two little known "eggs" (keep in mind that that score is only
temporary)... ;)

//// The Official AEO Tempest 2000 Strategy Guide

O.K. You've put up with the previous bit, and think you can give my
score and accomplishments a shot? Here's some help 'cause you're gonna
need it....

[] 1. You need to be able to control your blaster with PRECISION!
Make sure you can stop in any given lane at any given time... once you
get to the 70s and 80s there is no room for any overshoots.

[] 2. Try to make it through the red levels without using JUMP at all.
This will force you to look at new ways to pass levels, because
popular to contrary belief, jump isn't gonna help you all the time.
(Especially when you don't have it.) You learn weird things this way,
like while a fuseball is moving between lanes you can move through it
without getting hurt.

[] 3. Learn when to pass a warp. If you haven't found out yet, the
last quarter of wave two (the red one (and every second wave from then
on)) consists of probably the toughest web designs in the game. If you
get stuck on a level, it will probably be one of these. When this
happens, don't keep playing the same level(s) over and over and over
again for hours. Think of an alternate route... try starting two or
three levels before the dreaded "impassable" one and get to the warp
screen. A victory there and you jump ahead 5 levels, most likely
skipping the one you were having trouble with.

[] 4. Learn when not to pass a warp. Similarly if you are playing for
points, it is almost always beneficial to almost complete the warp and
then die at the end, since you will most likely obtain more than
20,000 points over the next 5 levels.

[] 5. Shoot and move. Shoot down the lane a tanker is in, then, before
your shot reaches it, move left and right, and shoot down the
adjoining lanes. When done correctly, both contents of the tanker will
be destroyed immediately after the tanker itself is hit.

[] 6. Don't let demon heads scare you... if you shoot them from a
distance, their horns are unstoppable. But if you let them get to the
rim, they can be destroyed after one shot.

[] 7. On later levels don't use your superzapper until you have gotten
the first "2000" zappo... that way you should be able to survive long
enough to get a "JUMP." Even then, the levels can get tricky.

[] 8. Kill UFOs and mirrors quickly, if you don't have "JUMP" these
can be a real nuisance. Often times it is more beneficial to
concentrate on destroying these monsters while allowing flippers to
reach the rim. They block valuable lanes!

Those should get beginners pretty far... if you are really good, this
will help your Beastly Endeavors.

Learn how to push the fire button... there is no way you can even come
close to passing Beastly if you don't know how to fire...even an
"amphetamine-crazed bongo-player" (Jeff Minter's words) won't be able
to press the buttons fast enough. While in Beastly Mode, stop on a
level and just hold down the fire button... you will notice that you
fire a continuous stream of about 5 or 6 shots, then a pause, then 1,
then another pause, and finally another 5 or 6. Every time you repress
the fire button the sequence starts over from the beginning. You need
to learn (especially to counter the super-flippers) to hold the fire
button down (so to get the stream of 5 or 6) a fraction of a second
before the flipper hits you. This way you will be guaranteed a stream
of 5 or 6 shots and there won't be any possibility that the flipper
will "get by" between your rapid presses.

This is all the help I can give you at this time... hey, it's all I
used to pass Beastly Mode...

There are three "secrets" to T2K, and Atari wants to keep 'em that
way, but if you EMail me solid evidence that you passed Beastly Mode
(i.e., write what it says on the screen), I might be able reveal one
or two of them. If you can't make it through Beastly Mode, hey, there
is an 8 directional joypad and 20 other buttons... you can figure out
the right number of button pushes, can't you?


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   Will Jaguar make Atari king again?
 |||   By: Patrick Roelandt
/ | \  Internet: patrol@hacktic.nl
       ------------------------------------------------------------------

//// Once upon a time....

We all know the distress signals Atari users from all over the world
have been sending out. Many of them are mad at Atari for "letting them
down". The Tramiel family is often blamed the most. "If I was managing
Atari, then.."

However, after the recent 1993 financial figures were released, I
realized how lucky we are that Atari is still here. Only one fifth of
the sales compared to 1992! And even 1992 was a bad year if you
compared it to 1991, and so forth....

Of course, more advertising, swifter management decisions, other
product lines,  could have/would have helped. But the fact is, in the
computer branch, both C= and Apple aren't doing that great either.
Commodore appears to be on its last legs, but with the Power Mac,
Apple could be rise again. The Jaguar could do the same for Atari, but
for the computer line (TOS)... I personally think the PC has won.
That's not to say Atari won't be able to fill some niche markets in
the graphics and music department, but they will never reach the same
scale again like with the ST (in my humble personal opinion).

Only by drastically cutting costs, has Atari been able to survive
until now. Do you really think Atari's Falcon would have been a huge
success with a lot more advertising? A slight chance, but the
advertising cost probably would have burned up all their extra income
and even more. In which case, Atari wouldn't have had money left for
Jaguar. Which gets me to my point.

//// Jaguar will save the day, but...

People have complained about the slow start of the Jaguar, but think
of this: Atari claimed to have $40 million to support Jaguar. The same
amount of money is spent by Sega and Nintendo every year in UK
commercials! The bottom line is: you need money to make money. What
Atari's strategy appears to be - buy as much production with IBM as
you can while still allocating enough dollars to advertise. While at
the same time, slowly try to win back users (sales increasing),
supporters (stock market up), dealers (number of retail outlets
growing) and developer support (86 and counting....).

My conclusion: Atari is succeeding on all points up until now.
Looking at the financial figures, I came to the conclusion that there
is NO OTHER WAY for Atari to proceed. Atari has little financial
resources left, so they've had to use initial revenues from Jaguar to
buy more production and advertising, as well as expand the company
again. This way they will hopefully get things going in an upward
spiral.

Other people may say: why doesn't Atari borrow money or raise more
stock? Concerning extra loans; interest can kill a company, and with
the low stock value Atari had, you're not in a very strong position!
Only now, with Atari stable at near $7 a share, is it strong enough
to survive the issuing of extra stock or borrowing extra money.

//// Why will Atari make it

A quick summing up on why I see that Jaguar will save Atari:

Outside Atari:

- Stock value. People who buy stocks are no fools. They want to make
  money and look very carefully at the company and its future. Stock
  purchase is always future oriented (You hope they will do better so
  the stock goes up)

- Backing of Time Warner: they just bought 1.5 million extra shares at
  almost $1.5 above market value! Obviously they think/now great
  things about Atari! Rumors are that Time-Warner has other options
  to pick up additional Atari stock in the next half year.

- Jaguar itself is a true innovation; a quantum leap above the 16 bit
  game consoles out now. Nobody took Atari serious, so the "underdog"
  has a nice headstart. This product is "wanted".

- Retailers, customers, developers, the general press, and game
  magazines are taking the Jaguar serious: there are plenty of
  publications, awards, etc., for Jaguar to be proud of. Several
  developers have quickly changed their pessimistic tone once they got
  their hands on a Jaguar development system.

- Jaguar is selling very well in areas where there are NO commercials.
  I live in Holland, where Jaguar should be a secret, but the name has
  already popped up in various publications. One shop imports NTSC
  Jaguars and can't keep them in stock despite the steep import price.
  People are screaming to become a member of the Dutch Jaguar Club,
  even if they don't have a Jaguar. The last time the world of
  consumer electronics witnessed this kind of enthusiasm was about a
  device called 2600....

Inside Atari, there are some more clues about Jaguar success to be
found:

- The restructuring of the Sunnyvale organisation and the confidence
  everybody at Atari expresses over the Jaguar.

- The startup of a real advertising campaign both on T.V. and in
  print. Atari can only afford it if they expect some return on
  investment. Heck, Atari at CES alone was almost a miracle!

- Atari's policy on "one game for the world", liberal developer
  agreements and pursuing of large retail chains is promising to say
  the least. It will help when people look at Atari and don't see the
  restrictions they have at other platforms.

- The name in gaming that Atari still has from the 2600 days, combined
  with the "special" feel, playability and originality many Atari
  games seem to have.

- Jeff Minter. :-)

//// The future according to Patrick

Jaguar will probably make Atari a prosperous company again. This could
mean better news for TOS users all around, but don't expect miracles
too soon! For games players, there will be plenty more good news
ahead. Atari has indicated successors, peripherals (VR helmet, CD-ROM)
and a lot of titles to come. These titles promise to be innovating and
not more of the same.

In the long run, Atari will have to make sure they stay in touch with
the customers and watch their expenses. This won't be a problem, as an
ancient study book on various management styles used on my univerity
mentions Jack Tramiel in the sentence "...this type of management
control obviously takes place at Commodore International, where CEO
Jack Tramiel keeps track on expenses as little as $25". While
everybody has been making fun about this in the past few years, the
point about this article is that maybe these measures are exactly the
thing that has kept Atari alive!

So if Atari watches its steps closely, somebody can write "the Rise
and Fall and Rise of Atari" in a few years.

Maybe somebody will remember this article by then....


Bio: I'm a 24-year old Dutchman. My current job is automation
coordinator at a production company. I'm currently also doing a
part-time University study in EDP Auditing. Besides videogaming, my
other hobby is music (trumpet/bassguitar/singing in several bands)

My enthusiasm for Atari began in the 2600 days, and was revived with
the Lynx, for which I did a lot of promoting efforts. I also try to
import Lynx-games (e.g., Battlewheels) to the Netherlands. When I
first heard about Jaguar I immediately started following its story.
Now I'm starting up a Jaguar Club in Holland which will be bringing
out a printed magazine.


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   Following the Bouncing Pong Ball
 |||   Interview with Lyra F'lalsi Polo
/ | \  By: Travis Guy
       ------------------------------------------------------------------

//// Editor: As I said in the last issue, there's news of a new Jaguar
game, programmed by the first independent Jaguar developer, Ms. Lyra
F'lalsi Polo. Ms. Polo is a programmer who's working with a registered
Jaguar developer, but who has chosen to start her own private company,
Polo GameWare to market games she says, "My boss wouldn't touch with a
ten foot pole - heck, Atari won't even sanction them." Here's an
interview I conducted with her today, and coupled with a GIF of her
first Jaguar title (enclosed in this AEO archive), makes this a
special AEO exclusive.

//// Travis: Good evening Lyra.

Lyra: Hi, Travis. Aren't you going to ask me about the weather?

//// No. Why, should I?

Don't you usually waste a lot of time in your editorials talking about
"It's spring in Atari's Garden," or some such as that?

//// Sometimes. But I want to talk with you about your games. Tell me
     a little bit about your company, Polo GameWare. Why are the games
     you want so make so different?

I like the playability of good solid games, but I have a sadistic
streak. I feel that video games should be a natural outlet for violent
urges, and I feel cheated when games wimp out. Donkey Kong for
instance.

//// Donkey Kong?

Yes. The first time I dropped a quarter into a Donkey Kong machine, I
thought I was going to get to bop the big ape on the head with my
hammer. I was soooooo disappointed. I was 8 years old then, and I
knew then that one day, I'd learn to make video games the way -I- want
them to play.

I spent six years on several design teams that worked on various games
for the Fairchild and Colecovision systems. Neither system did well.
The games we worked on did worse. After twelve long years of
Republican rule, it looked like Atari was due for a comeback, and I
wanted to ride along on the Fuji's coattails. Last year, I had the
chance to join a company that signed on as a Jaguar developer.

//// And that company is?...

I can't say. One of the terms of the agreement under which my boss
allows me to use the development system for personal use is that I
can't say who my boss is. He's funny that way.

//// What has Atari said about your arrangement? Does what you're
     doing violate any agreements you or your boss have with Atari?

I don't know. Frankly, it's no skin off my nose - I'm out to make
money.

//// I see. Well, let's get on to your first game. You say it's a
     update of the all-time classic video game "Pong".

I don't have to say it, it is. Pong was a great game. I remember I was
working tables in the Midwest when Pong first came out. I played it
all the time. Sure, it was fun, but where was the violence?

//// Maybe Pong didn't need a violent aspect. After all, isn't Pong an
     abstraction of table tennis?

Whatever. My point is that Pong -could- have been more exciting, more
intense. Instead, it was a square white dot that bounced back and
forth on a black screen.

But with the advent of the Atari Jaguar, all of that can be changed.
When we received our Jaguar development equipment, the first thing I
did was to code up Pong. It only took me ten minutes. Then I added a
gun to one of the paddles, and the idea took off....

In my adaptation of Pong, which I've named BATTLEPONG 2001, the two
players face off on a 3-D texture mapped playing field. In the middle
of the field, where Pong only had a white line, BattlePong has a
swirling vortex, out of which appear weapon powerups.

The two players, or one player with an Artificially Intelligent
opponent, move their paddles up and down the screen, just like in
Classic Pong. The catch here is, if the ball (3D rendered and realtime
raytraced) hits one of the powerups, the ball bounces off the powerup,
sending the powerup moving across the screen towards one of the
players. If the player can catch the powerup with their paddle, they
obtain that particular weapon.

//// What kind of weapons are featured in BattlePong 2001?

Neat ones. Twin Rapid-Fire blasters; difficult to avoid, but they do
little damage. Plasma Cannon; slow firing, but they'll take out a
paddle with one hit. My favorites are the Magneto-guided charged
particle rings. They're guided towards your paddle, and when they hit,
they carve your paddle in half.

//// And when your paddle is destroyed?...

You have five lives to start with. Depending on the feroicity of the
attack, your next paddle may not appear for a few seconds. Time enough
for your opponent to volley across a couple of Pong shots unopposed.
Pong -is- the basis of the game, remember?

//// Anything more to add about BattlePong 2001?

I've just added ComLynx and modem support, so Jaguarians will be able
to link up all over the world and fight it out in the 21st Century's
first electronic Ring of Death.

I'm also working with several big record companys to have their
leading recording artists lay down some heavy metal tracks for the
cartridge.  I've got a lot of space in there to fill.

//// So, what's on the horizon for Polo GameWare? I mean, after you've
     trashed Pong, what's next? Pac Man on a rocket sled? Frogger
     with a bazooka?

Hmmmmm. No. Actually, I've already got an idea. I'm about to start
negotiations with Atari for use of the AvP engine. I've got an idea
that will settle the video game wars on screen, once and for all.

//// You don't mean?...

Tramiel vs. Trip! Don't worry, it'll sell.

//// I'm sure it will. Thanks for your time Lyra. Uh, by the way, has
     anyone ever mentioned that your name is an anagram?

I've heard that for years. But for the life of me, I still don't know
what a "y'all" is.

//// Goodnight Lyra.


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   Andreas' Den
 |||   By: Andreas Barbiero
/ | \  Delphi: ABARBIERO     GEnie: AEO.2
       ----------------------------------------------------------------

//// The Good, the Bad, and the parties in San Diego.

Prologue: After a desperate battle for power, the two sides regain
some semblance of peace. This was not so much a struggle for an
ideology, but of something deeper, more sinister. Control.

Yes I have won, I actually get to write my own column this time!
After defeating my own personal force of evil and neatness, my wife, I
can now resume my regular ramblings. I won this time, but for the
next?... Will Evil NEVER cease?

After spending the last few weeks without the benefit of being online
and having the use of my TT030, I can truly say that the computer
world is a grim one. I spent quite a few hours trying to decipher and
configure some of my mates' computers. These guys, being sucked into
the so called "computer revolution" are still dealing with the
realities of a computer based on a 1981 design. These new PCs may be
fast, but for all intents and purposes, power unharnessed is power
unusable. Apple is moving in the right direction with the introduction
of the PowerPC based Macs, but they are indirectly admitting a problem
with themselves here. They are losing developers, they are losing
users, they are losing. This is similar to what has happened with us
and the Atari.

I won't bore you with more info on the PowerPC, but I will say this,
that while it is a step in the right direction for many reasons (DOS
and Windows emulation being only a small one) they are not the full
blown machines that they need to be. I am not naively expecting them
to produce a computer with all the bells an whistles for $200, but
there are a few things that need to be done. System 7 is not yet
completely optimized to run as natively as possible on the PowerPC,
SoftWindows could use some reprogramming, and if it were written as
well as GEMulator is, it would be a lot faster than only about 80% of
the speed of a 486SX-25. Mac people will have to wait for applications
to be recompiled to run ON the PowerPC before they will see a great
deal of speed in their day to day applications.

//// Plastic Surgery 101: The Atari Face-lift

In face of the changes in the computer community, 100MHz '486s,
PowerPC computers and all, what can Atari do to maintain viability in
the near future. My TT030 is still a very viable computer, I use it
with pleasure in the face of the "faster" DOS machines out there. The
Falcon030 is not the electronic marvel it once was, but it is still
amazing in front of the expense and compatibility problems posed by
trying to make a PC or Mac do the same.

I read through a lot of computer gaming magazines with software for
other platforms, and for the first time in a long while, I am becoming
impressed with the quality of the software. They are still bloated and
too slow considering the number crunching of the newer computers, but
the competition has resulted in some FINE games, that challenge the
even the term GAME. I have my Jaguar and love it, but after seeing
what an F-14D, F-18 and others can do IN the air (Ever been in a plane
flying at 300kts and see two Tomcats form up on you only 50 feet away
from your window, then kick in the 'burners and climb straight up?
Makes you glad that they are on your side.) seeing a simulation that
can let me fly them like they are SUPPOSED to fly is true excitement.
(OK Spectrum Holobyte, where is F-16 Falcon 4.0 for the Jaguar?)

Why don't we have programs like this on the Atari? Well, simply
because the way these programs are written, they require the same
thing that a semi truck does. Horsepower is the word. When you get to
the DOS world, the sledgehammer school of programming takes place.
Won't run fast enough? Get a faster computer! I have seen things done
on the Atari that could never be done on a PC without say, a 100MHz
Pentium, Viper PCI graphics card, and a DSP audio card. "$5000
please... your order will be filled immediately after Intel can figure
out how to do it without the air-conditioner card option."

OK, so now I have repeated what I say every month again, and preached
to the converted. What can be done to get this stuff on the Atari?
Well with a few small improvements, the Falcon030 could be the
turbocharged 4 Cyl. Grand National to the IntelDX4 6.2L Diesel
tractor. I am going to be rational here, and not expect Atari to
retool massively to fill a niche marketplace, but here goes.

Falcon-TSi

(TSi- "the second incarnation")

50MHz '030
MSTe case
8 SIMM slots (72 pin)
*JPEG/MPEG hardware CODECs

Internal SCSI-2 bus 
External SCSI-2 Wide bus
128-256K Write-Back cache RAM
*1,2, or 4 MEG V-RAM

1280x960x256
1024x768x32K
600x800x65K down to 320x200x16.2M

Put all this in a MSTe/TT030 case and you will have a machine
competitive with anyone. MultiTOS would absolutely FLY on this
machine, and with a max of 256 MEGs of RAM (with 72 pin SIMMs you can
get up to 32 MEGs of non-composite RAM in a single SIMM!), X-Windows
might be a reality. The DSP port could be used to connect to an ISDN
line with some awesome implications. ST and TT RAM is another problem.
The Falcon030 is a 24bit clean computer, but that gives us the darn
ST-RAM, TT-RAM debacle that we have on the TT030.

Software like Backwards gives a huge amount of compatibility with
older ST applications, and while I really would like to see developers
work towards a 32bit/64bit standard for addressing, maybe having an
ST-RAM "compatibility mode" button selecting 24bit addressing to 12
MEGs of RAM for ST program work. I don't know how feasible that would
be, but it is in the "nice" category. Also in the nice category would
be a faster DSP, with the higher clock rate of the F-TSi a
clock-doubled DSP would be fantastic. I don't have any info on the
clock rate limits of the DSP, but again, in the "nice" category.

TT-TSi

33 or 40MHz '040
12 SIMM slots (72 pin)
*25-50MHz 68882 co-processor

SCSI-2 Wide
256/512K write-back cache
*JPEG/MPEG/Quicktime CODECs
*PCMCIA type III card slot
1,2,4 MEGs of V-RAM
buffered PCI card slot

(same as Falcon030TSi, PCI card can upgrade video to custom specs)

The biggie here is the PCI card. PCI is a major step for computer
peripheral cards. Designed to be fully buffered from the CPU, they are
totally independent from the CPU. Unlike local bus or VESA which are
linked to a '486, a PCI card could be used on any computer that
implements the PCI standards. There are some incredible 64bit graphics
cards out there already for the PCI, and even with a 32bit bus on the
TT030, custom processors (like a Jaguar chipset on a PCI card) could
perform everything from real-time video capture and FMV to 32bit color
and DSP audio. Basically, except for the built in graphics, memory
expansion, and the cache RAM, there is very little changed from the
TT030 we have now, which should help keep costs down.  Write-back
cache is a quantum level above normal caches, allowing for greater
access to the cache, and on Pentium systems, write-back will give
about 20% increase in system performance over standard caches.

Items beginning with a "*" are optional, just having the socket or
slot available is enough. Video RAM will really help things out by
getting rid of the contention in RAM that the STs used to have.
SCSI-2 wide is an enormous upgrade over standard SCSI, giving a max of
about 40 MEGs/sec will really help with Direct to Disk recording and
full motion video (FMV). These are just suggestions, but I really
believe that with similar features, the sales of Atari computers could
continue and give us what we want in the way of computing for the next
5-7 years, and give Atari the chance to regroup and wait to see what
happens with the PowerPC, which should be the next step in the 680x0
chain rather than a '060. Let the other guys fight it out!

//// Price!

How expensive will all this be?  More expensive than prices now, but
not much more. 50MHz '030 boards for the Mac run about $600 with FPU,
and you can get a 68040 with FPU bare for about $300. I could
reasonably see the processor upgrading for the Falcon030, as
manufactured by Atari costing only $300 more than a Falcon030 costs
now, and hopefully the other upgrades will only run about $100. This
is not like an aftermarket upgrade where you add the costs together,
but they are offset by the deletion of original hardware. If you can
get a Falcon030 for $1200 then the TSi should only cost ~$1500. A VERY
reasonable price. Even at ~$2000 it would be a great deal. The TT-TSi
should be as proportional, costing at maximum $800 more.

That's it for this time, and enough dreaming for now. If Atari cannot
fill in the missing pieces, then maybe the 3rd party channel can.


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   Scoping out Jaguar RGB
 |||   By: Duncan Brown
/ | \  GEnie: D.BROWN38   Internet: BROWN_DU@Eisner.DECUS.Org
       ----------------------------------------------------------------

There are a lot of connector pinouts floating around for the A/V
connector on the back of the Jaguar. None of them enabled me to
successfully construct an RGB cable, so there was only one answer:
SCOPE IT! Here, then, is what an hour with my trusty oscilloscope has
taught me. I now have my development Jag feeding a 19" RGB monitor
salvaged from an old video game (Stargate, in this case.) To anyone
still doubting that the Jag provides arcade-quality graphics in a $250
console, you need only see it on an arcade monitor to be convinced!

The biggest point of confusion on the various connector pinouts seems
to be the numbering scheme. I will try to clear that up. Here is how
the connector appears in several Atari documents (like the one
provided in GIF format by AEO):

                 TOP (duh)

1A  2A  3A  4A  5A  6A  7A  8A  9A  10A  11A  12A

1B  2B  3B  4B  5B  6B  7B  8B  9B  10B  11B  12B


The important point is that this is looking at the PCB edge connector
from the BACK side of the Jag. (Or, if you prefer, looking at the
cable connector from the side the *wires* connect.) Pin 1 is on the
side towards the DSP connector.

And here are their functions:

1A     Left audio
2A     Audio GND
3A     GND
4A     GND (chroma)
5A     RGB Blue
6A     Horizontal sync
7A     RGB Green
8A     Chroma
9A     GND (?)
10A    +5V (?)  No warranty expressed or implied on these....
11A    +5V (?)
12A

1B     Right audio
2B     Audio GND
3B     GND
4B     RGB Red
5B     Composite (Vertical) Sync
6B
7B     GND (Luminance)
8B     Luminance
9B     GND
10B    GND (composite vid.)
11B    Composite video
12B


Some specs on those signals:

 RGB pins: range from about .9V (black) to 1.2V (full drive)
 Hsync:    baseline is about 3V, with 20uS pulses to ground about
           every 62uS
 Comp Sync: baseline is about 5V, with 20uS pulses to .2V for hsync,
            and 250uS pulses to .2V for vsync (about every 16.6mS).
            Each vsync pulse is surrounded on either side by about
            200uS of double-frequency (about every 31uS) hsync-type
            pulses.

Which all means that to hook your Jag to an RGB monitor, it must
accept *analog* RGB signals, be able to sync to a horizontal frequency
of about 16KHz, and a vertical frequency of about 60Hz.

In the case of an old arcade game monitor, the specs are dead-on, but
there is one thing to note: you must hook the sync signals to the
"negative sync" inputs of your monitor. In the case of my Stargate
monitor (an Electrohome) that meant using the sync signal connections
on the little 3-pin connector, which is normaly unused by Stargate. If
you have a monitor that only accepts composite sync, then the 5B
output should work fine. If you need separate syncs, use 5B for the
vertical sync.

//// Some background on me:

I have "spent" (some would say "wasted"...) a lot of time and energy
throughout my life fooling around with video games. My love for
pinball and video games actually led me to own my own arcade for 3.5
years, starting in 1982. During that time and beyond, I
reverse-engineered several arcade games, generally for some specific
purpose. I created heavily modified versions of Asteroids for a
Psychology researcher at the University of Denver; I created new tube
shapes for the Tempest in my arcade; I wrote a complete new game from
scratch to run on Williams hardware (Stargate, Robotron, that era);
and so on. More recently I have been helping a researcher at the
University of Virginia who is using an Atari Race Drivin' Panorama
(3-screen version) as a driving simulator.

Other than tiny amounts of pay for the research work, all of this
stuff has mainly been for my own amusement; there was never any real
purpose to it all. But now it has finally become clear: it was all to
prepare me for my true destiny: JAGUAR DEVELOPER! I am offically
enrolled as a 3rd-party Jaguar developer, and am very impressed with
the platform. In fact, until now I had never even purchased a home
video game console system. With a few real arcade games scattered
around the house, why would I want to buy some cheesy toy system? But
the Jaguar has changed all that. It truly is an arcade-class machine
in a $250 box!

I have a (fairly) understanding wife, and two boys aged 2 and 6 who
obviously enjoy my odd love of video games! I drive a 1960 Land Rover
88 as my daily transportation, and enjoy going off-road with it with
the area Land Rover club. The Rover is 2 years older than I am....

I have a day job as Manager of World-Wide Systems Operations (whew!)
at a contract research firm located in Charlottesville, VA. The
Jaguar development is strictly nights and weekends... but I don't
sleep much, so that helps.

So, that's me in a nutshell. I hope these RGB pinout specs will be of
some help to someone, as I know I wasted a lot of time trying to do
this based on incomplete information, but now that it's working, the
results are worth it!


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   "From a saved backup..."
 |||   By: Ron Whittam
/ | \  GEnie: R.WHITTAM
       -----------------------------------------------------------------

//// Laying it on the Desktop.

In this column I hope to foster communication and support for 8-bit
and ST computer owners... presenting a positive and directive
approach. This will help to strengthen the users group base and
encourage the executive element.

I wrote last time that the users group is needed now more then ever.
Just because the product isn't being made anymore is no reason to stop
supporting those who own it. When people sell an old Atari computer,
someone BUYS an old Atari computer. This person needs all the help and
support they can get. This is where the users group comes in. This is
the niche.

The users group needs to be more then just a social gathering of
fanatic computer technicians. While it is logical for the code heads
to congregate at the meetings, the meeting must reach beyond those who
already know how to operate the computer. It must reach the computer
owner who wants to use his computer. There is a large gap between
technical computer people and those who utilize computers. It is
important to choose a meeting agenda that targets the real needs of
the members in your group. Also consider the people you want to become
members of your group.

The best meeting agenda is the one that works. This may sound largely
ambiguous yet it is true. One style of meeting will not fit all the
needs of every group. The meeting agenda will need to change
occasionally to keep the atmosphere of the meetings from becoming
stale. The agenda is your plan of attack. It is the plan for both the
battle and the campaign. Any group has some agenda, a plan or goal to
accomplish. The adage "if you fail to plan, you plan to fail" is very
true when it comes to a successful meeting. The battle is the monthly
meeting. The campaign is the year of meetings and activities.

While I cannot speak for the host of users groups, I can share my
experience in this area. For the past three years I have been planning
meetings month to month. Largely the burden of the meeting agenda was
on the president of our group. The executive members never met
together except at the monthly meeting. We conducted the users group's
business at this meeting. We would make decisions about what to cover
in the next meeting at each meeting. "Well, what do we want to do next
month?" This question was the general plan of attack. It worked well.
We managed to reduce our membership to six diehard Atari enthusiasts
who were fanatical over their Atari computers. The officers did their
jobs. The treasurer handled the cash and payments of the group. The
president ran the meetings. The editor produced a meager newsletter.

The general attitude of the six was to blame the Atari Corporation.
Atari did not seem to be supporting Atari computers. Each assumed this
was what caused our membership to drop. Something had to change. The
group put it to a vote. We would either disband, dispersing the groups
assets among the remaining members, or stay together and do something
to increase the membership. This vote nearly ended this users group.
By a narrow margin (more then half), those who voted to "keep on
keeping on" won the day. That was a year and six months ago. Today
this users group grows steadily. The membership is increasing by at
least one member each month. The members are getting involved with the
group and contributing to some very successful meetings.

What made the difference may not be just one thing. However, the
element of planning was definitely a major factor.

I read a very interesting book: HACKERS by Steven Levy. This book
provides a history of the computer revolution. Beginning in the early
sixties, Steven Levy writes about the hackers that shaped this world
of computers we have today. A portion of the book reflects on the role
that users groups played in the early days of home computers. In this
section there is an explanation of what users group meetings were
like. In brief, the group opened with what they called a "mapping
session" where members of the group could share ideas and ask
questions. The questioners would be directed to people who could help
them (later in the meeting). This mapping session set the tone and
direction for the meeting. Then there was a DEMO session in which
computer vendors and programmers could show their wares. Finally,
there was the "Random Access" session. The group would break up in
small groups and chat, share programs, and answer questions raised
during the mapping session. I found this information interesting, so I
set up our users group meeting this way.

These three parts are necessary components to any users group meeting.
Whatever you call your sessions, these need to be done at some point
in your meeting. Since communications makes the community a community,
the first component is important. Some members need an structured
outlet to share what they are doing with their computers. Others need
an opportunity to ask questions of the entire group. Often it is far
easier to ask a group of people a question then to get the undivided
attention of the resident computer guru. The "mapping" session
provides this.

The second component provides information. Demonstrations of hardware
components and software programs are interesting and entertaining.
They also provide buyer confidence. If you see how a program really
works, you are more apt to purchase it and use it. A demonstration
will give your members opportunities to see if that particular item is
worth their money, or not.

Finally, the last required component is open informal discussion. This
time develops strong alliances and friendships. The casual and
informal communication will help to develop a better group. This is
one reason many people show up to any type of meeting.

I began to run the meetings with these three elements. I found that
those who attended were enjoying the meetings more. The visitors that
showed up came back. The nonmember Atari computer owners began to
rethink their decision to drop the membership. They got out their
checkbooks and paid the fee. Quite a few ex-members began coming back.
I feel that these three components were meeting a need that all
computer owners have. As a result, the group began to grow.

The real growth took more then just a three-part agenda. It took a
concerted effort. I called a meeting. Those invited were the executive
officers of the users group and the SysOp of a local Bulletin Board
Service that featured an All-Atari-Only BBS, the ROVER BBS. The plan
for the meeting was to come up with an overall agenda to provide a
directed approach to Atari support. Three major areas were included.
These were the users group meetings, the newsletter, and the BBS. We
began our strategy by listing the perceived needs of our membership.
We came up with monthly topics of items to cover at each meeting. The
plan was to orchestrate these into the ROVER BBS discussions and the
newsletter's articles. The ROVER BBS would be the hub of our
communication during the month. Now that the plan was in place, we had
to work the plan.

Meetings have maintained the general structure. Each meeting has some
form of a structured sharing time, demos, and an informal time.
Diversity was provided by encouraging members of the group to
participate. A programmer that is knowledgeable about computers gave
us a brief talk on how emulation works. An electrician shared with us
some tips on electrical care and precautions. A technician will be
sharing how to take apart the Atari properly, offering tips from his
experience with electrical components. A programmer will show how to
write a simple "hello world" program in C. The list goes on. As more
are getting involved, the group is getting more interesting. This is
like a snowball rolling downhill.

Another factor that infused this users group was what the newsletter
editor did during the year after that fateful vote... but that is
another story.

In the future we will cover Newsletters, Membership (methods of
increasing it), Demo (where and how), etc., and I will share from my
own exploits as a users group president; the frustration and the
elation. Stay tuned.


Ron Whittam is a Customer Support Specialist for a small software firm
in Boise, Idaho; and the President of the Atari Boise Users Group. He
can be contacted on GEnie or through the Internet at
 and on ROVER BBS (208-362-2243).


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   The Unabashed Atariophile
 |||   By: Michael R. Burkley
/ | \  Delphi: MRBURKLEY    GEnie: AEO.4
       -----------------------------------------------------------------

I received a note this week from a friend of mine, Carl Hafner, or as
his multitude of software packages describe him, Uncle Carl. It was a
disturbing letter from a dedicated Shareware author. Briefly (and with
no guarantee of accuracy since I can't find the note now!), he said
that had kept a record of downloads of one of his Shareware programs.
Over a given three month period there were about 75 downloads, but
only two registrations. He said that he could understand that because
perhaps people downloaded it and then didn't like it and so didn't
register. But at the end of that three months he uploaded a patch
program to update his original program. Mind you, this patch program
was described as being no good without the original program. Over 50
downloads of the patch program in a short time and not a single
additional registration! He asked me, "What? Am I to believe that 50
people didn't use my program, but kept it on their systems,
downloading an update patch, and are still not using the program?
Come on!"

That's what I say as well: Come on! Folks, we have to support
shareware authors or we won't have any. Carl's comments are the same I
hear for many shareware authors. Some people register, most don't.
It's not that most shareware is outrageously expensive because it
isn't (I think he was asking $10 for the program). I think it's
because most of us want something for nothing. Robert Heinlein coined
a catchy word, TANSTAAFL: "There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch."
He was right, someone has to pay for everything we get. We have no
right to take without paying unless we receive a gift that someone
else has already voluntarily paid for. Let's not ask Shareware authors
to pay the price for their software to us!

As I write this it is Good Friday evening. Palm Sunday was almost a
week ago, Easter is in two days. It's a low point in my week. It's a
low point in my week both in energy and in attitude. In energy,
because I have been BUSY!! with evening services and breakfasts and
preparing for Easter services (two hours of sleep last night - I'm
zonked!). In attitude, because I remember that my gift of life has
been paid for by Jesus' death on the Cross. Who was responsible for
his death? I was, in part, as are all who trust in him. That's
something he did for me, and for all who accept it. How can I pay for
a gift like that? I can't, which makes it a true gift. Thanks!

I received two other gifts these past two weeks, minor in comparison,
but much welcomed indeed. I tuned into two GEnie online conferences,
one telling about the new Walnut Creek CD full of Atari PD and
Shareware software (and more), and the other telling about the new
Atari magazine, Processor Direct. At one conference I won the CD and
at the other I won a copy of the first issue of Processor Direct! If
you remember a few months ago I won a copy of JV Enterprises PAC 520
and 1040 game sets. I think I'm on a roll! Come out to the next
conference yourself and maybe win something, too!

Well, it's time to get on to the software. There's not a whole bunch
this week, not because of a lack of uploads, but because of a lack of
time on my part to describe them. Here they are:

[] 3D-ANIM is a program by CU, Flatliner, and Nemrod of Belgium which
will allow all of you Falcon030 users out there to display .3D2
objects with shading through use of the Falcon's DSP chip. 3D2 files
are from Tom Hudson's Cyber series of programs. Simply choose the 3D2
file using the item selector and then view it! Rotate using the mouse
buttons. Viewable 3D2 files are 7 Kbytes or less and not larger than
the screen size. Numerous 3D2 sample files are included. English Docs
included. Dated sometime before April, 1994).

[] ATARIINT is a very interesting introduction to Internet. It is
designed to "to help keep ya from becoming roadkill on the information
highway :-)" by RJA (Dated Feb. 15, 1993). It contains a glossary of
InterNet terms, a list of various FTP sites with Atari files; there is
also a short description of how to use FTP (for those with the access
to InterNet file transfer tool). Also it contains a listing of most of
the files from the Atari section of the FTP site
"atari.archive.umich.edu." Finally, there is an example session of
using one of the "Archie" internet databases, doing a scan on the word
"Atari." Both GEnie and Delphi allow InterNet access (GEnie with mail
and Delphi with both mail and file transfers). You might also contact
a local college or university about getting public access through
them.

[] BALLON is an .IMG file entitled "Balloon Adventure." It shows a hot
air ballon with a smiling balloonist sitting in a basket underneath.
The balloon has a large blank banner on it which may be used for
messages in your DTP work. Nicely done. Uploaded by GUAMBOMB, the
Delphi .IMG expert!

[] CA is a beautiful in-depth 70 frame Spectrum animation of a flight
through the chess board scene created by Ville Sari for the POV
raytracer. Don Dakin is the one who made it move for the Atari. This
animation requires a hard drive (uncompresses to almost 3.6 meg!), 4
meg of RAM, and a computer which can display Spectrum pictures. The
view is of a chessboard set up under a sunny blue sky. The pieces are
made of light and dark woods, and the board is wood edged with marble
inlays. SPSLIDEX.PRG included to view the animation. Dated Feb. 20,
1994. Recommended.

[] DEAD_MON is a very well-written text file by Randy Constan, Elfin
Magic Co. (the author of ElfBoot 2, and excellent Shareware GEM-like
boot up utility). This file details the repairs needed to fix an Atari
SM124 mono monitor that has died on you (the ones manufactured by
GoldStar which have the control dials on the right side of the
monitor). The problem will likely occur on any of these monitors over
time, but is particularly likely on those monitors adjusted to provide
a full screen view. It's not a difficult "fix" but it does require
someone with good soldering and de-soldering skills. If you have a
mono monitor get this file!

[] DEV_DEMO is a demo of DEV_SHELL v.2.0 available from MajicSoft and
written by David Munsie. This is shell program for GFA BASIC v.3.5/3.6
which will magnify the power available to GFA Programers. This program
provides you with a handsome and useful interface that allows you to
quickly access the various tools provided through GFA BASIC. You can
configure Dev_Shell to run your favorite external programs at the
touch of a button, toggle between 50/60 Hz modes, and even edit,
compile, and modify compiler options for up to 5 source codes at a
time. This demo works in ST medium res. on any ST--Falcon (the full
version will work with ST res. and some others, with reservations).
Limited docs and functionality, but it's easy enough to figure out and
enough to whet your appetite.

[] F1 is a very playable demo of Domark's new game, F1. This Formula
One Grand Prix racing game is excellent! My son and I both enjoy
playing it! He recommends it to you. The graphics are as good as any
arcade game I've played and the controls (mouse or joystick) are very
smooth. You can only play one track, but it's fully playable
otherwise. For all ST's, but not TOS 2.06 - now why couldn't they have
fixed that?!) with at least one meg. Color only. This must run from a
floppy (uncompresses to 366K).

[] HD_TECH is an ASCII file listing phone numbers where you can get
manufacturer's support for a variety of Hard Drives. Sometimes it's
easier just to give them a call!

[] ICONEDIT is the TOS 4.xx Color Icon Editor by Sam McGee (GiftWare
version 0.02). This program edits the color desktop icons used in TOS
versions 4.xx and greater (found in the DESKICON.RSC file). It will
only work on a Falcon030 in 80 column 16 color VGA resolution. It does
not work with multitasking or desk accessories yet. Docs included. I
found this on the CodeHead BBS.

[] MAGEDEMO is the M.A.G.E. Demo Disk. M.A.G.E. stands for the Majic
Arcade Graphics Engine designed by David Munsie and now marketed
through MajicSoft. Using this tool, which has produced some of my
favorite games (like Evader, KID_GP, Kaboom!, Cud Lee, and Dark Pearl,
you too can easily (well, if you know how to program!) excellent
arcade action games using GFA BASIC. Compatible with the ST--Falcon,
this programming utility provides you with four editing tools designed
to help you create the background graphics and animations for your
games. This demo provides you with a demo game for you to play with
(blazingly fast sprites, excellent joystick control and a fun
shoot-em-up play - all created in two hours!), and the tools you need
to modify those games to your heart's content. Docs included. This
looks to be one useful programming tool!

[] STORM! is the ASTRAsoft Storm! Demo by David Oakley, the author of
Desktracker (dated March 18, 1994). This excellent program is a new
ProTracker MOD editor and player compatible with all ST ProTracker
editors. Using the standard GEM interface for ease-of-use Storm!
allows you to play MODs in the background (at 12.5, 25, or 50 Hz
playback capabilities). Running in a window as either a program or
.ACC, on any 1 meg or better STe, TT, or Falcon, Multi-TOS compatible,
and in ST-High res or better, this program will allow you to edit and
display (with notes on a staff or with symbols representing the
various voices available) Protracker MOD files, AVR, and signed (.SAM)
or unsigned (.SPL) sound files. This demo is limited in many ways, but
it provides both a visual and aural demo of the programs capabilities.
Docs and online help included. The complete program should be
available by May, 1994.

[] ST_TOOLS is ST Tools Version 1.93 by Stephen Cornio (dated early
1994). As the name implies, the program is a set of tools for use on
the Atari ST (through Falcon, too!). ST Tools is reminiscent of PC
Tools for MS-DOS computers. The main display includes a directory tree
and a listing of files by directory. This provides you with a very
fast and easy way to see what files are in your directories and where
they are placed in relation to each other. Current functions include
listing/editing of File Allocation Tables, Hex dumping of files,
sectors or memory, undelete files, searching files, sectors or memory,
check, repair and optimize file structure on your Hard drive (large
BGM partitions supported, too) or floppy.

One very nice thing about this optimization process is that it occurs
file by file so that a minimum amount of data is lost in case the
computer's power fails or something else causes it to crash in
mid-process. The program is entirely GEM based, with the standard
drop-down menus, scrollable windows and dialog boxes. ST Tools
requires a minimum of 450K of free memory to execute, but as always
(almost) the more free RAM the better. One limit of the program which
I run against is that only 512 or less directories (folders) per disk
or partition are allowed (more and the program bombs). Since I keep
all of my programs in separate folders I can't use this program except
on two of smaller partitions of my hard drive. The program will run in
both High and Medium resolutions and is ST--Falcon compatible.
Shareware. Docs included.

[] TARTAN is Tartan v.1.7 by Christoph Zwerschke. This is a very nice
GEM-Based chess game in which you play against the computer. An editor
allows you to set up the board to your liking, and you can set the
computer at a variety of skill levels. The program and docs are in
German, but you can figure it out!

Since it's Easter Week I thought I would share with you some Christian
oriented programs. I don't know where I've found most of these. I
suspect that most of them can be found on both Delphi and GEnie, at
least that's where I can find just about everything!

[] BIBLPWR2 is Bible Power by Joseph Rodriques. This program provides
you with a means of searching through the Bible book by book for key
phrases, read specific verses, or read whole books at a time. Each
book is provided with a brief summary giving the author (if known),
the date, location and theme. Well done. A BBS and voice # is given to
get the whole program (only the King James Version of the Gospel of
Mark and the Book of Revelation are included). This seems to be an
update of the previous version I've found (BIBLPWR). No version date
except 1990, but this has a fancier input screen than the "previous"
version.

[] BIBLSERS is The Bible Series New Testament v.1.3 by Irving W.
Risch of Christian Software Developing. Run from either a Hard drive
or from floppy, this program will allow you to search through and view
the New Testament. The text includes the program author's annotations
and cross references. Two (of many) interesting parts of this program
are its Parables file and index file that allows you to search through
the NT by subject. Docs included.

[] BIBMIXRF is ST Bible Mixer, one of the Agape Bible games series.
This program uses biblically based facts to teach spelling. Color
only. Docs included.

[] BIBTRAPF is ST Bible Trap, one of the Agape Bible games series.
This program teaches the order of the Books in the Bible. Color only.
Docs included.

[] CH_TREAS is a complete package developed to support a Church
Treasurer's work. It is configurable, thereby offering use for other
record-keeping needs. It promotes efficient and friendly data entry
and provides numerous screen and hardcopy options along with
"fun-to-use" features. Needs 1-Meg of RAM, color monitor and
double-sided drive. Includes 60-page instruction manual. Shareware by
William Austin.

[] CONCRD22 is the SpiritWare Concordance Program v.2.2 (dated March
7, 1992). The SpiritWare concordance program is a Bible-study tool
that makes maximum use of mouse, window, and menu capabilities of the
GEM desktop system to provide the user with a fast, easy and powerful
way to access words and phrases that occur in Scripture. It is
designed to be used on STs that have at least one megabyte of memory.
This file contains the concordance program, the King James Version of
the Pauline epistles from the Bible, the SpiritEd GEM-based .ACC text
editor, and documentation for all of the above. This is one excellent
package. I have both the KJV and the New International Version (both
available from SpiritWare). It's fast, with excellent ability to
access the complete text surrounding the word for which you searched,
and very easy to use. You can search for individual words, parts of
words, multiple words at one time, or any combination of the above. I
recommend it highly. These are fully functioning programs. In order to
get the complete text of the KJB or the NIV and printed docs for these
programs contact SpiritWare. Color or mono.

[] SPRTED13 is SpiritEd v.1.3. This is a GEM-based text editor that
operates as a desk accessory. It is now compatible with all
resolutions and any TOS version (MultiTOS compatible as well). It is
written to provide an ability to take notes and prepare lessons from
within SpiritWare's Bible concordance program (see above), but since
it is a general-purpose text editor, it can be used to edit text from
within any application, including the GEM desktop. Spirit Ed uses a
MAC-like pull down menu system (like STalker and STeno). It provides
basic editing capabilities including cutting, copying, pasting,
searching, and replacing. It also has an undo function that allows you
to cancel the last operation that was performed. Several new and
useful features have been added to this well-supported .ACC. Mouse
and/or keyboard controlled. Saves are allowed. SpiritWare products are
produced by servants of the Lord Jesus Christ at Fifteenth Avenue
Bible Church in Seattle, Washington for the edification of His body.
Color or mono. Docs included.

[] GNCIPHER is GNCIPHER - CHALLENGES FROM THE CRYPTO by The Good News
Software Co.. It is a phrase decoding game which is mouse driven and
comes with a large library of pre-entered phrases called CIPHER
CHALLENGES (500 of them!). This is an excellent and challenging game.
You have to decide, based on letter frequency and position, which
letters represent the correct letters in the uncoded phrase (sort of
like "Wheel of Fortune" with clues - for example FIID might represent
TOOL - of course you could only find that out from a larger sample
which is why phrases are used instead of words). You will find that
some of CIPHER CHALLENGES vary from the easy to the extremely
difficult. You can easily create your own phrase dictionaries for
inclusion in GNCIPHER. Color or mono. Docs included. The info section
of this program includes a concise and clear presentation of just what
it means to be a Christian, and how to become one. TOS 1.0--1.62
compatible (at least). SHAREWARE (with 100% of the Shareware fee going
to registered charities!).

[] GODSPEED is a limited functioning demo of GodSpeed, the Bible
search program from Kingdom Age Software and Thomas E. Zerucha. This
demo only contains the Gospels, while the complete program includes
the whole Bible in King James version. A New International version is
in the works. The full version supports multiple word searches and
many other options.

[] GODWORD2 is God's Word 2. This is a comprehensive Bible concordance
tool and more from Glenn W. Ulrich & Adam M. Ulrich. This program
allows you to search through the Scriptures for specific words or
phrases, compare two passages, easily reference a long list of
commonly used biblical topics, print out your results, and much more.
I really like this shareware Bible program. The complete text of the
Old and New Testaments is included (King James Version). This package
requires a hard drive, a color or mono monitor and one meg of RAM is
recommended. Online docs.

[] MMATCH01 is Maker's Match, a concentration type game where you use
your memory to match hidden symbols. It is one of the Agape Bible game
series. What makes it a bible game is that the symbols are from the
Bible or the other Agape games, plus hymns for music. Color only.
Docs included.

[] STBWRDSR is ST Bible Word Search, a part of the Agape game series.
This program contains a puzzle generator, about 20 puzzles and the
Bible Word Search itself. The puzzles range from the books of the
Bible to Bible characters, geography and events. Color only.
Excellent teaching tool (in other words it's fun!) Docs included.

[] STKGLORY is ST King's Glory, one of the Agape Bible game series.
This program is a maze game with a maze generator. Excellent!

Here are some other files that I recommend, but haven't had a chance
to really descibe (next time).

[] EVRST32E: Everest v.3.2 (now in English) Excellent!

[] RDD320: The Revenge Document Displayer v.3.20 Shareware! ST--Falcon

[] AGENDA_C (and AGENDA_M): a WOW graphic calendar creator from F10
Software. Shareware and now fully functional.

[] GIO_PI4B is a program by Gio Ciampa which calculated the decimal
expansion of Pi to whatever amount you wish. I was looking for this
and am glad to have found it!

[] TRANSDEM is misnamed in that it is NOT a demo of Transcendence BBS.
It is the latest version (2.4.01 dated 2/19/94) and is now fully
working and FREE. The author has paid for the work and now you don't
have to! Requires Hard drive, color or mono, and at least one meg of
RAM (more is better).

[] TRIYAHOO is Triple Yahoo. Excellent! GEM based ST--Falcon. Get it
if you like Triple Yahtzee. MultiTOS, Geneva, just about anything
compatible!

[] TTERM212 is Teddy Term v2.12. This terminal program is 16 color
ANSI compatible and does PILES of stuff! By M.J.Matts.

Finally is a text file I downloaded some time ago:

TANSTAFL is a text file taken from the summer 1985 NASA Tech Briefs
(and to there from the April 28, 1975 issue of "Industry Week." It is
a parable that describes a society based on the assumption that there
is such a thing as "a free lunch." To that Robert Heinlein would say
(he coined the phrase) TANSTAAFL (There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free
Lunch). While I think most of us would like free lunches in the short
term, this file shows what long term free lunches do to us all.
Interesting.

I have to go! Take care folks, and I'll try to send more your way the
next time!

All of these files can be found on one or more of the following
on-line services: GEnie (M.BURKLEY1), Delphi (MRBURKLEY), The CodeHead
BBS (213-461-2095), and at Toad Hall, now the official BBS of the
Boston Computer Society (617-567-8642) (Michael R. Burkley). Drop me a
line!


Michael lives in Niagara Falls, NY. He is a former Polyurethane
Research Chemist and is presently the pastor of the Niagara
Presbyterian Church.


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 |||   Spectre Update
 |||   Courtesy: Dave Small
/ | \  GEnie: DAVESMALL   -   Gadgets By Small RoundTable
       ----------------------------------------------------------------

OK. Here's 3.1's status.

 As you know, we looked at System 7.0 when it came out. It crashes
with an "out of memory" error. We traced that to an  IPL (Interrupt
Priority Level) test, which was simple: If you were running IPL 0, you
passed; if not, you crashed, with the error selected as "Out of
Memory". Since Ataris MUST run at least 2-3 to avoid horizontal blank
interrupts (and dreadful slow speed), I could almost believe this is
an attempt at an emulator killer. I don't know. I DO know it took an
all-night trace, the trace running 9600 baud into a fast PC clone that
stored it in a disk file (ever tried to find a telecomm program that
can do SUSTAINED 9600?) and waited until it crashed NEXT MORNING. At
the end of this huge file (ever tried to EDIT a really big PC file?
WordStar finally did it.) I found the IPL crash. WEIRD. They also had
unhooked the 128K ROMS from everything ... serial interrupts, mouse
interrupts, Line A, Bus Error, Vertical Blank, One Second tick, and so
on. I really don't know how much or little of the ROMs they even use
on 7.1.

 3.1 gradually became stable. There were the usual bugs in
development, because we added and changed a lot in preparation for
what's coming (Spectre does NOT stop at 3.1!!!) The CONFIG file would
not save SCSI status. You could not select a boot drive more than the
first drive displayed. Things like that -- annoying, and all in "C", a
language I'm real expert in (hoot! *haw!*) But found and fixed.

 There are now two menu entries, ACSI and SCSI. If you don't have
SCSI (e.g., not TT) then SCSI is greyed. Each has 12 or 16 partitions
(can't remember, it's midnight) displayable. You can turn
on/off/format into OOP partitions either ACSI or TT SCSI drives.

 Then, basically, you can use your TT SCSI drives as Spectre drives.
It sounds simple, it was really BAD to implement. I had to finally
bring in a SCSI whiz to help me debug it. Simple: SCSI problems on the
motherboard. (1st production run TT). We had a "newer" TT, that fixed
it, essentially.

 We also did our best to de-timing-loop the machine, so you can set
your TT or SST or whatever to warp drive. As far as we know, you're
safe up to whoever knows Mhz. Maybe that 64 Mhz 040 board would fail,
I don't know. (Like to try!). But this should get rid of the annoying
"turn off caches" stuff. It seems very solid; I used it a lot while
debugging 7.1.

 So, in 3.1, you have the boatload of little fixes we've been adding
from bug reports since Jan. 1991 (3.0's release date!), a machine
independence for speed (although 8 Mhz cruises along just nicely),
TT-SCSI support (and in general, that sort of speed support). I know
several people who would chew my arm off for  TT-SCSI drive support,
and others that want to turn up their accelerators, and I can dig it
... I like it too. That's why the Camaro.

 As it happens, we "froze" the code in January, and I went after 7.1
when I was, errr, mentally able. (quit smirking, you!) I believe the
problem is the CLASSIC MultiFumbler zero-READ (not write), which does
not cause a bus error.  It is not reading 0, it's like reading 2 or 4
or 6, the ROM locations. Bad data, etc, crash. I have to sic the Zax
on this one to find and fix it. Good news is we FIXED this stuff
before -- this was what crashed Microsoft Word 3.02 (remember that
war?) and MultiFinder 6.x.x.

 So rather than hold you up any longer on 3.1, I'm going to "shoot the
engineers" (old saying: "Somewhere in the life of a project, you're
going to have to shoot the engineers and actually ship.") and ship
this thing out of here.

 3.2 will follow on with the 7.1 with MultiFumbler fix. (Remember,
when they went to 7, MultiFumbler became mandatory... no more Finder.)

 About TT Memory --

 I've done some really tricky experiments (in terms of getting them
to run) in swapping TT memory around to speed up performance. I have
to do several BIG changes to Spectre before this can be fully done and
you have like a 12 meg machine. (Caution: Not all programs will
tolerate 12 meg of freespace. A common bad MacHabit is to request 8
megs of memory, knowing it will fail "because of course a Plus has 4
megs only", and that causes a memory compaction in the Heap. Well, if
you have 12 megs and it works, that program may flop. 8 Megs appears
more stable, and is a more "supported" Mac size, whatever that means
-- programs are more willing to "see it").

 I have solved the problem of getting TT memory to be ST memory,
which one Pundit has been telling folks is impossible. However, there
are such big changes required, like a whole new buffer setup, that I
am not comfortable putting them into this code. I think it is a far
far better thing to get the TT users and high Mhz users up and solid
than to crash them on an untested RAM scheme. I have a 12 meg TT, I
understand you want it, but hang in there a bit longer.

 The memory menu thus goes to 14 Meg (Falcon, remember), but above 4
meg will probably be greyed, since the 3.1 is frozen and I'm working
on 3.2 now. You never change a frozen version except for bug fixes,
and then you line up various ST versions and test. So far, so good.
Even the Mega STE no longer has the 4 meg bug, where non 4-meg Mega
STE's would crash (a cache conflict).

The Falcon030 is not yet supported. It's just greatest good for
greatest number; System 7.1 is needed by more people.

Color Quickdraw I won't comment on, because of all the work I've
done. Enough said.

For now, there isn't much point in Revving the manual, since it will
change in 3.2, when other things come up. (For example, you will see
menu options to enable or disable ST and TT RAM, to do it YOUR way.)
But they're not going to let you select all TT RAM yet; not until
people run the new buffer scheme and I'm sure it works. MMU stuff can
be mighty tricky, and persuading a 24-bit machine (e.g., Mac) to allow
me to swap in 32-bit memory (where TT RAM is is "past the end" of
24-bit memory, past 16 Megs; it starts at 16 megs) was most
entertaining. Jeeze, I can feel the knee brace still digging into my,
errrr, ankle.

I would recommend the bug fixes to anyone. We found a couple lulus
that should not have gone out in 3.0. Ooops... well, it worked well.
3.0 was a VERY good release.

I believe the "disk hiccups" and "keyboard freezes" some users have
reported will stop with 3.1. The disk routines are TOTALLY REWRITTEN
(again!) with an eye for machine speed independence. This is really
not easy; there is no easy way to force a given time on the machine,
when you can't easily find out what sort of machine you're running on,
if there is an accelerator, and so forth.  For you programmers, just
TRY doing a tst.b on MFP bit 5 (GPIP) to slow you down. Everyone SAID
that would cause an 8 Mhz cycle. On a ST, it does. On a TT in cache,
it runs twice as fast. Without cache, 1.5 times as fast. I don't know
why, I just measured it on the scope instead of taking it on faith.

The timing-independence was difficult but the TT seems steady now,
been using it for months (on 3.1, of course). But I'll head back to
the Zax now, and that's 68000 only, on one of the Megas.

The next two goals are to finish stomping 7.1 into the ground, and to
bring online the extra TT RAM. Most of the code is there, the menu
options are there (greyed sometimes), but I know there are borderline
situations I am going to HAVE to test. (Border conditions between ST
and TT RAM are especially tricky, and they positively will happen).

All the goodies like tailorable menus remain the same.

On XGM (Atari's past 4 partitions formatters since AHDI 3) WE NOW
SUPPORT XGM PARTITIONS. We can handle 14 per drive, since Atari more
or less set that limit. (Actually we could go higher, but good
heavens, 16 icons on your desktop?!?) We have an adjustable total of
16 partitions mountable; I can increase that if someone needs it.
(What, running a 5 gig hard disk?)

XGM partitions required a plane trip up to Oregon and seeing an old
pal again.  Hint: He's helped me before a lot with "C" stuff.

The SCSI stuff required bringing in a pro and logic probes and stuff,
until we figured out the out-of-sync condition was the machine (which
we could regularly lock up as it got hot). Welp, that's how ya learn.

GCR code was already pretty time independent, since it slams on the
cartridge port so much. This just gives it more overhead to work with
than on 8 Mhz machines.


 So. With XGM, we're current with Atari's disk drivers. With SCSI,
we're current with TT. With high Mhz independence, we can handle
various accelerators, even one called SST at 40 Mhz. That is
trans-warp drive, folks.

 And the bug fixes are ever-welcome.

 So. That's the delay, what we have NOW, and what is coming soon.

 I no longer walk the dog with a leash; I never want to get shots
under the kneecap again. Whooooooo.


 We'll post some details about how you can get your hands on this as
soon as the literature is complete (I'm writing, I'm writing!). Sandy
just got a pack of 1500 fonts and is dying to use them, too, to format
this.


 Tell you what. There are a LOT of people not on GEnie who would like
to know that Gadgets is still alive and 3.1 is done. If you feel like
it, could you repost these as necessary to the Net? My Visa/MC just
ran out (of course) and my Internet access is closed until the new
card "wakes up". (I have the card; Visa/MC does not have it in their
blasted computer yet, nor given me the PIN code.) Probably
comp.sys.atari.st would be a nice place to put this; it goes to a
great number of Spectre customers.

 (Let's not have 15 posts of it, though, ok?)

 Thus, for reposting, while these notes on 3.1 are copyright, you are
free to reproduce them as long as you do so completely, so the next
person gets the news same as you did.

 Questions I won't answer: What was the stupidest thing you did
programming while taking weird stuff a week before your operation?

 (Fortunately, I can't remember a lot of them.)


 Anyway. I'll try to be online more now that the intense war for 3.1
is behind, and if any bugs show up, we'll catch them in 3.2. I don't
think it will take long to show up (knock wood) because we spent so
much time researching how to find and kill zero-reads...

 We have had someone answering our Gadgets line (or at worst,
returning calls) for quite some time now.

 PLEASE DON'T BUG HER ABOUT 3.1 EVEN IF YOU NEED IT YESTERDAY. Until
we have something to ship, we don't want to say "Go!", ok? It takes
time to get disks duped and CHECKED (we have been loused up so many
times we must check them!), and I kinda wanta do a new PD disk if time
allows.

 Naturally, when it's "Go" time (which is a LOT sooner than "Real
Soon Now"), feel free to call.


 I'm sure I've forgotten some things in 3.1, but the point is, we're
moving and have a definite direction. And yes, we think a lot about
Spectre 4.0 on the horizon, with all those neat color cards out there.
I wonder how hard it really is to program a Tseng Labs ET-4000 chip?

 It's good to be back.

 Thanks for being patient with us, folks. Wow, have we had our share
of fun.

 Enjoy 3.1.


 -- thank you, Dave Small / bottle washer, coder, VP / Gadgets by
Small


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   Atari ST RT News
 |||   By: John G. Hartman
/ | \  GEnie: J.G.H.
       -----------------------------------------------------------------

Atari RT Weekly News 3.4

 = FROM THE BANNER =

       -- Dateline Atari! RTC Friday, April 1st at 10:00 pm EST --
       The next Dateline Atari! will be held on Friday, Apr.1st. Stay
       tuned for what is happening in the world of Atari from Atari!
                 Don't FOOL around and miss this one!

       Gribnif Software's Geneva and NeoDesk 4: Productivity for the 90's
       Wednesday, April 13th, at 10 p.m. with Dan Wilga and Rick Flashman

           MajicSoft RTC (M.A.G.E., Dev_Shell 2.0) with Dave Munsie,
         John Stewart, & Larry Scholz!! Wednesday, April 20th at 10 p.m.

                    Coming 27 April!! Current Notes RTC!!!

         Can't make it to a RTC? Leave a question in cat 1, topic 11.

 = ATARI RT LIBRARY =

 = RTC TRANSCRIPTS =

      ------------------------------------------------------
32363 WAL_RTC.ZIP              X BRIAN.H      940326    9856     70  13
      Desc: Walnut Creek GEMini RTC 23 Mar 94
32149 BRODIE19.ARC             X ST.LOU       940305   21376    375  13
      Desc: Jaguar Staff! Ads! Tempest 2000!
32053 PRGRTC07.ARC             X MIKE-ALLEN   940223    6784     33  13
      Desc: Programming RTC 17Feb94
31915 PRGRTC06.ARC             X MIKE-ALLEN   940211   16256     43  13
      Desc: Programming RTC 3Feb94
31865 BRODIE18.ARC             X ST.LOU       940205   17152    624  13
      Desc: TT's, Falcons, Jaguars and more...
      ------------------------------------------------------

 = LAST TWO WEEK'S PRESS RELEASES =

      ------------------------------------------------------
32386 AMNESTY.TXT              X POTECHIN     940328    9856     87  14
      Desc: DMC Calamus Upgrade/Amnesty Offer!
32348 GLMPR355.LZH             X R.FAULKNER4  940325   56576     79  14
      Desc: GEnieLamp Press Release #3.55
32336 TOADMAR2.ZIP             X TOAD         940323    7040    257  14
      Desc: News & $109 Hand Scanner from Toad!
32299 CT_SWAP1.TXT             X D.FINCH7     940319    2560     27  14
      Desc: Connecticut Swap Meet on April 9
32288 GLMPR354.LZH             X R.FAULKNER4  940318   46208    108  14
      Desc: GEnieLamp Press Release 3.54
32229 JAG_RAFL.TXT             X J.PERRY13    940313     896    102  14
      Desc: Win an Atari Jaguar!
      ------------------------------------------------------

 = LAST TWO WEEK'S DEMO RELEASES =

      ------------------------------------------------------
32369 MAGEDEMO.LZH             X D.MUNSIE     940327  182784     12  10
      Desc: Demo of the GFA BASIC game tool-kit.
32356 CVTRAN30.ZIP             X H.WOLFE1     940325   94208     79  10
      Desc: Multilingual translation program
32329 DEV_SHEL.LZH             X D.MUNSIE     940322   30464     27  10
      Desc: Demo of a new GFA Shell!
32237 AUDIOCAL.ZIP             X K.CAVAGHAN2  940314   60032     83  10
      Desc: Prof. Audio Calculator
32225 VOXMAIL.ZIP              X K.HULET      940313  165504     63  10
      Desc: Voice mail for FALCON!
      ------------------------------------------------------

 = LAST TWO WEEK'S TOP 10 DOWNLOADED PROGRAMS/FILES =

      ------------------------------------------------------
32305 BOBBITT.ZIP              X J.EIDSVOOG1  940320     896    164  16
      Desc: Animated mouse file
32281 PROFLE15.ZIP             X GRMEYER      940317   76032    160   2
      Desc: Profile v1.5 system info display
32223 DESK_INF.ZIP             X B.BRESNIK    940313    4608    158  21
      Desc: Description of DESKTOP.INF format.
32342 AGENDA_M.ZIP             X F.VUOTTO     940324   42368    155   2
      Desc: Mono Calendar Creator-Fully Enabled!
32345 SUPRVIEW.LZH             X GRMEYER      940325   97152    150   2
      Desc: SuperView SHOW replacement
32343 AGENDA_C.ZIP             X F.VUOTTO     940324   39936    149   2
      Desc: Color Calendar Creator-Fully Enabled
32306 JOINT.ZIP                X J.EIDSVOOG1  940320     768    140  16
      Desc: Animated mouse - smoking cigarette
32318 SPEEDOM.ZIP              X E.MONACO     940321    6400    137   2
      Desc: NEW! How fast do u multitask?
32349 MINDRAFT.ZIP             X GRMEYER      940325  102400    133  28
      Desc: MiniDraft CAD program
32321 BATRISK.ARC              X W.TROY       940322   24832    124   8
      Desc: RISK clone
      ------------------------------------------------------


                            --==--==--==--==--


 |||   Developing news!
 |||   Items of interest from TOS platform developers and supporters
/ | \  -------------------------------------------------------------------
       -------------------------------------------------------------------

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// 1994 Michigan Atari Fair                            April 23, 1994
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Attention Atari owners, user groups, dealers, vendors!

Announcing the 1994 Michigan Atari Fair And Swap-meet, Saturday April
23, 1994 from 10am - 4pm Elizabeth Lake Church Of Christ (near M-59
and Elizabeth Lk. Rd.) Waterford, MI (near Pontiac, MI).

Sponsored by the Michigan Atari Computer Enthusiasts (M.A.C.E.). Table
space (limit 2 per customer/business) will be available to those who
pre-register on a first-come first-serve basis.

To register: send $10.00 per table to:

 M.A.C.E.
 P.O. Box 2785
 Southfield,  MI 48034

Your pre-registration is your admission ticket. you may bring with you
2 other persons to help at your table(s).

Admission charge:  $2/person
                   $5/family

refreshments/food will be available.

Wanted: User groups,dealers and product developers to participate.
this is an inexpensive opportunity to reach many potential customers
and members. This show will be advertised through computer stores,
user groups, BBSes, etc. in Michigan, surrounding states and Canada.

Do you:

* Have new or used Atari computer equipment/software to sell?
* Have a program or peripheral for Atari computers that you could
  demo?
* Have expertise in an Atari program that you would teach in a
  seminar for a fee?

If so, plan on attending the show.

For more info, contact:

Mark Tappen (810-443-1989) N.W. Detroit/Southfield
Rev.Bob Hodgman (810-682-2785) (810-682-5140)Waterford/Flint area
Ray Simmonds (313-295-0581) Downriver


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Calamus AMNESTY/Upgrade Offer!
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Last week I received issue No. 90, the February/March 1994 publication
of FEEDBACK, an Atari user group magazine published by the Adelaide
Atari Computer Club. I read it from cover to cover, always interested
in things happening in Australia as I rarely have the opportunity to
drop in and visit around those parts (small understatement) ;-). On
page 10 was an article entitled "Rise and Fall of Atari Oz". I had
already heard many of the details via private email on GEnie from a
few friends in Perth and Sydney. Regardless, I found the article quite
informative. One paragraph in particular though, caught my eye. On the
top of page 12 it says:  "Calamus SL is light years beyond anything on
any other platform but does it sell well in Australia? No! Pirate
copies outnumber legitimate versions 10 to one."  Ouch!

My pleasure at the compliment to Calamus SL was eclipsed by my
chagrin at this glimpse of the reality of being a software publisher.
Just perhaps, I thought to myself, I can actually do something about
this! It's tough enough running a business with serious software on
the Atari platform without giving up 9 out of 10 potential sales to
pirates. It's also hard in light of Atari's lack of commitment to
their own computer division, says I, as tactfully as possible. I am
determined to bring these people into the fold as it were, or at least
offer them that opportunity.

With that in mind I fired off a letter to FEEDBACK offering their
readers a thing or two. Concentrating further on the very concept, it
occured to me that I would be doing DMC a grave injustice if I didn't
make the same offer through all Atari publication's in North America.
I immediately sat down to write this letter to all and sundry.

I have a message to deliver and perhaps the three hard copy Atari
magazines in North America: Current Notes, ST Informer and Processor
Direct as well as Atari Explorer Online, can assist us in delivering
that message to a larger audience.

My message is fairly straightforward and should come as no surprise to
many of you. Simply put, it's tough supporting a serious computer
product on the Atari platform today. I'll guess that it's been over 2
years since Atari sold anything approaching a viable level of
computers, one that would actually justify new product development!
That said, "So what!" says I. We have an excellent product in Calamus
SL. We continue to support it, update it, upgrade it, add new modules
and basically ignore the reality of Atari Corporation's computer
division in favour of the needs of our own well-established customer
base. We all know that some people have chosen to leave the Atari
platform but I know for a fact that many have stayed because of
products such as Calamus SL. We are told so by our customers daily. At
DMC, every single customer is important. The larger, stronger and
broader the user base, the better off we will all be. Of course
reality does rear its ugly head every now and then which is why DMC
will soon release the Windows NT version of Calamus, for all those
non-Atari types. I heard they were starting to feel deprived or
something. ;-)

In that vein, if you own an illegal copy of Calamus SL, I want you to
go legit! No more hiding that pirate copy. If you use Calamus SL,
please, buy the real thing. I'll assume you have at least a few megs
of RAM and either an Atari monochrome monitor that handles 640 x 400
or a multi-frequency monitor that does at least 640 x 350. Calamus is
compatible with all graphics cards in 1, 4, 8, 24/32 bit as well.

As we continue to develop and support Calamus SL and new modules are
released, it is imperative that we reach out to as many people as
possible so I'd also like to address all non-Calamus Atari DTP program
owners at the same time. It is quite common, for example, to find
those interested in desktop publishing with both Calamus SL and
Pagestream. I extended an offer to Pagestream customers online some
time ago but I never did go direct to all Atari publications. It's
time. For all those with a pirate copy of Calamus SL, stand up, put
the past behind you. For all those with any other desktop publishing
software on the Atari platform, i.e.; Pagestream, Fleet Street,
Publisher ST or even Deskset II, I'm making it as easy and as
cost-effective as I can for you to also obtain the best desktop
publishing software on the Atari platform and arguably one of the best
in the world on any platform at any price. It's time!

On behalf of DMC, I am proud to announce a special offer for all those
without Calamus SL who are desktop publishing on the Atari platform.
Effective immediately, DMC Publishing will offer those of you that
currently own Pagestream, Fleet Street, Publisher ST or Deskset II,
the option of also obtaining Calamus SL. Keep your copy of whatever
you are now using while expanding your possibilities with Calamus SL.

                    UPGRADE AND AMNESTY OFFER

DMC will upgrade any other Atari DTP program to Calamus SL for US
$200.00 or $260.00 CDN. (A pirate version of Calamus counts during
this one-time offer. This amnesty will not be repeated).

Simply put, I am offering you the exact same upgrade price that I
offered to my own Calamus 1.09N customers. I think you'll agree that I
cannot do better than that. Please take advantage of our offer. You
will not be sorry.

To order, send DMC a photocopy by mail or fax of your original DTP
program disks from whichever program you are using, (a screen snap
shot of your Calamus info screen located in the top left-hand corner
of the program if you have a pirate version or just mail in the disk)
your name, address, telephone number and a listing of the computer
equipment that you own, plus the upgrade fee of US $200.00, or $260.00
CDN. and $10.00 for shipping and insurance in North America. Payment
made be made by Visa, Mastercard or Money Order in Canadian or US
dollars by telephone, fax or email.

DMC recognizes that you can become comfortable using a program.
Further, we acknowledge that there are many excellent features in
other DTP programs which may be of value to you. We do not ask you to
trade in your original disks. Keep them. We're confident that once you
learn Calamus SL you'll never look back!  This offer, extended to all
Atari computer owners in North America, will expire May 30, 1994 and
will not be repeated.

//// Calamus SL

As was anticipated, the new modular design of Calamus SL has become
the centre of a powerful and ever-expanding universe of desktop
publishing tools.

The standard Calamus SL package contains:

[]   A 600 page manual
[]   Four program disks with 12 standard modules:
[]   Clipboard Module
[]   Page Module
[]   Frame Module
[]   Text Module
[]   Text Style Module
[]   Line Module
[]   Raster Area Module
[]   Document Converter Module
[]   System Parameters Module
[]   PKS-Write Module
[]   Raster Generator Module
[]   Focoltone Module
[]   Printer Driver Generator Utility

The above, along with the main Calamus SL shell, contains over 1,000
features!

For those of you familiar with Calamus 1.09N, new features and
powerful enhancements from Calamus 1.09N to Calamus SL include:

The ability to accept modules, internal or third party. The ability to
process and pre-process large passages of text with speed and
precision.  Extended raster control with freely definable raster
angles and widths.  Intensity and contrast can now be corrected, while
an integral histogram allows you to optimize an image for your output
device. The PKS-Write Module provides standard word processing
functions plus the ability to edit layout information. The addition of
Cache and Virtual Memory speeds up and extends memory-dependent
functions. Create hundreds of macros, each assigned to a definable key
binding which can be saved and automatically installed in each work
session.

[]   Open up to seven documents at a time.
[]   Cut & paste to our new scrolling clipboard.
[]   Create and assign master pages (style sheets).
[]   Create and save text style lists.
[]   Expand, compress and skew text.
[]   Rotate and mirror frames, including group frames.
[]   Control frame placement and size to (7) seven decimal places.
[]   Print parts of pages (tiling).
[]   Define more than 16 million colours and save in colour lists.
[]   Set units of measurement for pages, fonts and lines.
[]   Choose write modes: transparent, opaque and inverse.
[]   Align frames to other frames.
[]   Define vertical alignment settings.

DMC brings "WYNIWYG" (What You Need Is What You Get) to desktop
publishing. The modular concept means that you purchase exactly what
you need today, with the knowledge that additional modules are
available when you require them. Your choice is now easier and more
economical, since you will be purchasing specialized modules, rather
than entire packages.

Currently, more than a dozen modules and scores of drivers are
available for use with Calamus SL. We will publicize the availability
of new modules, drivers and upgrades through our normal Customer
Support channels, as well as through periodic mailings to our
registered users and press releases to all serious Atari publications.

Sincerely,

Nathan Potechin - President
DMC Publishing
2800 John Street, Unit #10
Markham, Ontario Canada L3R 0E2
GEnie: DMCPUBLISH       Tel: (905) 479-1880
Delphi: DMCPUBLISH      Fax: (905) 479-1882
Compuserve: 76004,2246
Internet:DMCPUBLISH@GENIE.GEIS.COM


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// M.A.G.E. Update
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

We now have an update disk available for owners of the M.A.G.E. system.
The update disk includes the following:

[] Updated character editor
[] Updated anim editor
[] Text file explaining MS_BLIT & MS_ZONE commands.
[] The source code to "Dave Munsie's Frogger". (Fully...intact!!)

To get this disk you must have sent your warranty card in, or you may
send your card in with this order.

 Send $5.00 to:
 MAGE Update Disk #1
 c/o MajicSoft
 348 Meredith Square
 Cola, SC 29223

Please include your waranty card number with the order. Thanks....


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// STraight FAX 2.20
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

NewSTar Technology Management will soon be releasing STraight FAX!
version 2.20. While the official release date has not been set for
release of version 2.20, we would like to offer registered owners of
STraight FAX! version 2.00 or higher the opportunity to use this new
version prior to its official release.

The pre-version 2.20 of STraight FAX! has been under beta testing by
our crack expert team of beta testers for the past few months. Their
testing and suggestions for features in STraight FAX! has been
extremely helpful.  However, due to the rapidly changing FAX Modem
marketplace, where new FAX Modem models and firmware are released
almost weekly, there are probably a number of FAX Modems that have not
yet been tested with the new beta version.

Any STraight FAX! version 2.00 or higher owner can now request the
pre- version 2.20 beta via GEMail here on GEnie or via the Toad BBS as
F-Mail. To qualify, you must be a registered owner of STraight FAX!
version 2.00 or higher, which means that we must have your
registration card on file. To request the pre-version 2.20 beta,
please send PRIVATE GEmail to "C.S.SMETON" here on GEnie or to user
"Charles" on the Toad BBS (410-544-6999, 300-14400 baud). It is very
important to include your 10 digit Registration Number in the request.
Please do not post requests for this beta version in public.

We will be begin Emailing the pre-version 2.20 beta in about a week,
so there is ample time to send in a request and mail in the
registration card if necessary.

Version 2.20 has a number of additional features and enhancements in
both the user interface, commands, features and FAX Modem operation.
A number of changes in the FAX Modem operation have been made for the
US Robotics Sportster and Courier FAX Modems. If you have one of these
FAX Modems, you will probably want to get this pre release version of
2.20.

When version 2.20 is officially released, it will become the "shipping
version" of STraight FAX! at no change in the list price. Once version
2.20 is released, it will be made available to registered STraight
FAX! 2.xx owners free of charge (outside of on-line connection costs)
via GEnie as an attached file in GEMail or F-Mail on the Toad BBS. In
addition, updates will be provided at a small handling cost via postal
mail.

Thank You,

Charles Smeton
NewSTar Technology Management


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// Digital Disk Magazine
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

DD is a new multi-format disk magazine, available on ST, Amiga and PC
formats. We promise to be a little different from the rest of the
magazines, as some tend to be a little elitist (e.g., you have to be
in a demo crew to understand what they say).

We cover various topics such as:

[] News Network - News for all formats.
[] Dmail - Your letters page.
[] Digital Art - Graphics from our GFX artist and from you.
[] Interactive adventure - where you choosw what happens next.
[] 68000 tutorial series (starts this issue!)
[] Guide to MUD's.
[] Reviews of games and hints/tips.
[] Short stories.
[] Computer Debate board (basically a slag/flamer section)

and many many many more (Issue 5 contains 36 sections!)

There are also pictures, PD software and music modules.

The files are of .msa type. This means to decode the file into
something executable, you'll have to get your hands on "The magic
shadow archiver".  It is a different type of packer in the fact that
it stores the disk format as well as the data. It'll format the disk
WHILE the data is being unpacked, so use an unwanted or unformatted
disk! I am not taking any liability for any disks unexpectedly erased!

This issue (5) has many inprovements as it was released around
christmas, so expect a few holly leaves and snowmen on the screens ;-)

The mag is very easy to use, just run the program from GEM and wait
for the first screen (the computer should have been cold booted). The
first screen list some of the articles that you can read. At the
bottom of the screen you will see a '+' and '-' button, these will
scroll through the various screens (we cannot list all of the articles
on one screen you see ;-).  To read an article just click on the name
with the mouse, it couldn't be simpler.  Click on the 'Help' button
will bring up some help (handy that!) regarding graphics and changing
the music!

If you would like to get in touch with me, to ask about Digital Disk,
anything contained in it, or just for general chat, you can reach me
or my brother at the following Email addresses:

sh1aoy2@greenwich.ac.uk - ( Brother, Coder, Graphist, Editor )
ph1ane2@greenwich.ac.uk (ME!. Co-Editor, Public Domain Software)

Enjoy Digital Disk!

Paul and Steve Hill.


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// JV Converts PAC to Shareware
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

JV Enterprises, the maker of TOWERS, is releasing the PAC line of
software as Shareware. Keep a look out for these programs. All
programs have a $5 shareware fee. So, if you like them you can
register them. Registering these programs will insure future release
of programs for the Atari line of computers.

Thanks for your support....

 ======
TOWERS.....

A 3D, one or two player, dungeon game for the Atari line of
computers.  Available on-line or from your favorite PD house.
The cost to register TOWERS is $15.
 =====
Coming soon.............

We are currently working on a game for the Falcon 030 computer. If
you liked TOWERS, wait till you see this one! :)
 ======

JV Enterprises
PO Box 97455
Las Vegas, NV  89193
(702)-734-9689


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
//// New GEM-View 3.xx Module Packs
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

                                  Release:     A2
                                  Last Update: 31.03.1994

The following text briefly describes the contents of the newly
released add-on module packs for Dieter Fiebelkorn's popular GEM-View
3.xx File and Image Viewer for the Atari ST/TT/Falcon computers.

The module packs are are self-extracting archives and have been named:
GVW_NMxx.TOS (GEM-View, new modules #xx) for easier handling and short
download times.

If you have any questions regarding these modules, please leave us a
message in CATegory 7 (Graphics), TOPic 33 (GEM-View).

Note: To utilize these modules, please make sure that you have
GEM-View Version 3.00 or later. A complete GEM-View 3.xx package with
a 14-days FREE trial period can be downloaded from the on-line
libraries.


GVW_NM01.TOS: (now contained in GVW_V302.PAX)
=============================================

Contents: (Freeware = D. Fiebelkorn)

- HP DeskJet Driver Version 1.08 for Mono/Color(YMC/YMCK)
- Updated conversion module (thanks to H. Neukirchen)


GVW_NM02.TOS:
=============

New Modules for LOAD and SAVE:

- INSHAPE      LOAD/SAVE = Cybercube Research Ltd.
- STraight-FAX LOAD/SAVE = NewSTar Technology
- ARROW R24    LOAD      = Ton von Overbeck


GVW_NM03.TOS:
=============

New Modules for LOAD and PRINT:

- QFAX/COMA-Fax LOAD/PRINT = John McLoud


GVW_NM04.TOS:
=============

New Modules for SAVE and PRINT:

- GDOS Printer (21) SAVE/PRINT (Freeware = Dieter Fiebelkorn)
  Tested with Mono/Color Monitor and the HP550C (mono)
  DJ5.SYS (60600 Bytes from FontGDOS) works.
  DJ5.SYS (60539 Bytes from FSM-GDOS) works.
  DJ5.SYS (62287 Bytes from SPD-GDOS) does not work correctly.


GVW_NM05.TOS:
=============

New Module for LOAD:

- TIFF 1.01 (March 5, 1994) LOAD (Freeware = Dieter Fiebelkorn)


GVW_NM06.TOS:
=============

New Modules for LOAD:

- Apple II          Screens (B&W)
- Commodore C-64    Screens (B&W)
- Calamus Raster    Graphic (B&W)
- Apple Imagewriter Files 
- Mac Startup       Screens (B&W)
- Megapaint         Images
  normal/compressed
- MGF
  normal/compressed Images
- Monostar  *.OBJ   Images  (B&W)
- Printfox/Pagefox  Images
- Signum II         Fonts
- Thunderscan       Images

New Module for SAVE:

- MGF Monochrome Graphic Format


/// How to obtain more information:
===================================

For more information about GEM-View, please refer to the GEM-View
files in the libraries (search for keywords like GEM-VIEW).


/// Please support the SHAREWARE concept:
=========================================

GEM-View 3.xx is a SHAREWARE program. Please register your personal
copy of this excellent program now! There are several easy ways to do
this.

GEM-View can be obtained either directly from Dieter Fiebelkorn in
Germany:

                    Dieter Fiebelkorn
                     Gruener Weg 29a
                  4370 Marl 1 (Germany)

           bank routing code   BLZ: 426 610 08
           account number      Kto: 607 984 800

GEM-View registration fee: DM 40,--

Please send a pre-formatted disk (720 KB) and two CRIs (coupon
response international).

To obtain updates, please send a pre-formatted disk (720 KB), two CRIs
(coupon response international) and an update fee of DM 10,--. All
registered users of GEM-View <2.30 can obtain their update by sending
a pre-formatted disk (720 KB) as well as two CRIs (coupon response
international).


Or send your registration requests to:


                 Cybercube Research Limited
                   126 Grenadier Crescent
             Thornhill, Ontario, L4J 7V7, Canada

GEM-View registration fee: US $30.00 or Cdn $42.00

Personal cheques or money orders accepted. Make cheques payable to
Cybercube. No disk or CRIs required! Allow 4-6 weeks for delivery.

  Note: Please do NOT forget to include your address and
        CLEARLY identify your payment. Thanks.

Cybercube Research Ltd. is the only authorized North American
representative for Dieter Fiebelkorn's GEM-View.


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 |||  Shutdown ............................ Power off, EXIT, BYE, Logoff
/ | \ ------------------------------------------------------------------

We welcome feedback from all of our readers; feedback both positive
and negative. Whatever you think of our efforts, we sincerely would
like to know. Our EMail addresses are sprinkled throughout each
issue - with the new Internet gateway into GEnie, you can reach us
through the Internet also. Append "@genie.geis.com" to any of our
GEnie addresses.


Until the next issue of AEO, I remain,
Your Editor
Travis Guy
Internet: aeo.mag@genie.geis.com


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                (This issue printed on recycled photons)

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                                  DNFTEC

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                                    #1
                        Wide_left > 2*(Wide_right)

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                          No Inflation Necessary

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Atari Explorer Online Magazine is a bi-weekly publication covering the
entire Atari community. Reprint permission is granted, unless
otherwise noted at the beginning of the article, to registered Atari
user groups and not for profit publications under the following terms
only: articles must remain unedited and include the issue number and
author at the top of each article reprinted. Other reprints granted
upon approval of request. Send requests to .
Opinions presented herein are those of the individual authors and do
not necessarily reflect those of the staff, or of the publishers. All
material herein is believed accurate at the time of publishing, except
for that BattlePong bit, it was an April Fools joke.


                            --==--==--==--==--


Atari, ST, Mega ST, STE, Mega STE, TT030, Atari Falcon030, TOS,
MultiTOS, NewDesk, BLiTTER, Atari Lynx, ComLynx, Atari Jaguar, Atari
Portfolio, and the Atari Fuji Symbol are all trademarks or registered
trademarks of Atari Corporation. All other trademarks and identifying
marks mentioned in this issue belong to their respective owners.


                            --==--==--==--==--


                      Atari Explorer Online Magazine
                       "Your Source for Atari News"
               Copyright (c) 1993-1994, Subspace Publishers

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 :: Volume 3 - Issue 6     ATARI EXPLORER ONLINE            2 April 1994 ::
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