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Article #515 (730 is last): From: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson) Newsgroups: freenet.sci.comp.atari.mags Subject: ST Report: 17-Mar-95 #1111 Reply-To: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson) Posted-By: xx004 (aa789 - Bruce D. Nelson) Date: Sun Mar 19 11:44:34 1995 SILICON TIMES REPORT ==================== INTERNATIONAL ONLINE MAGAZINE ============================= from STR Electronic Publishing Inc. A subsidiary of STR Worldwide CompNews Inc. March 17, 1995 No. 1111 ====================================================================== Silicon Times Report International OnLine Magazine Post Office Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32221-6155 R.F. Mariano, Editor Featured in ITCNet's ITC_STREPORT Echo ----------------------------------------- Voice: 1-904-783-3319 10am-4pm EST STR Publishing Support BBS * THE BOUNTY INTERNATIONAL BBS * Featuring: * 45GB * of Download Files Operating with * Mustang Software's WILDCAT! BBS v4.01 * Fully Networked within the following Nets: ITCNet 85:881/253 JAX HUB ~ FIDO Net 1:112/35 Prowl ~ USPOLNet ~ FNET 350 ~ Nest 90:301/3 Delivered via Subscriber List through Internet 904-786-4176 MULTI-NODE 24hrs-7 days 2400-115.2 bps V.32-34 v.42 bis 28.8 Hayes Optima 28.8 V.FC Data/Fax USRobotics D/S Data/Fax 28.8 V.34 Everything FAX: 904-783-3319 12am-6am EST ----------------------------------------- The Bounty STReport Support Central .... 1-904-786-4176 FNET. 620 : Leif's World ................1-904-573-0734 FNET. 690 : PASTE BBS....................1-206-284-8493 FNET. 489 : Steal Your Face BBS..........1-908-920-7981 MNET - Toad Hall BBS.....................1-617-567-8642 ______________________________________________________________________ > 03/17/95 STR 1111 "The Original * Independent * OnLine Magazine!" """"""""""""""""" - STR INDUSTRY REPORT - PC's IN 33% of Homes - DEC Starion - MPEG V Standard Released - Toshiba; Tiny LCD - Math Ace - FIFO 16550 TIPS - Checkered Flag Review - WIN'95 - CENSORSHIP PETITION - Jaguar News - STR Confidential -* 400,000 WIN95 BETA PACKS TO SHIP *- -* INTEL PLANNING 'P7' CHIP *- -* APPLE STOCK FALLS AMID RUMORS! *- ========================================================================== STReport International OnLine Magazine The Original * Independent * OnLine Magazine -* FEATURING WEEKLY *- "Accurate UP-TO-DATE News and Information" Current Events, Original Articles, Tips, Rumors, and Information Hardware - Software - Corporate - R & D - Imports ========================================================================== STReport's BBS - The Bounty BBS, invites all BBS systems, worldwide, to participate in the ITC/Fido/Internet/PROWL/USENET/USPOLNet/NEST/F-Net Mail Networks. You may also call The Bounty BBS direct @ 1-904-786-4176. Enjoy the wonder and excitement of exchanging all types of useful information relative to all computer types, worldwide, through the use of excellent International Networking Systems. SysOps and users alike worldwide, are welcome to join STReport's International Conferences. ITC Node is 85:881/250, The Fido Node is 1:112/35, Crossnet Code is #34813, and the "Lead Node" is #620. All computer enthusiasts, hobbyist or commercial on all platforms and BBS systems are invited to participate. ========================================================================== CIS ~ DELPHI ~ GENIE ~ BIX ~ FIDO ~ ITC ~ NEST ~ EURONET ~ CIX USENET ~ USPOLNET ~ CLEVELAND FREE-NET ~ INTERNET ~ PROWL ~ FNET ~ AOL ========================================================================== SOFTWARE CREATIONS BBS is proud to distribute Silicon Times Report STReport International OnLine Magazine -------------------------------- With more than 130 Lines of PCBOARD access, Internet, Telnet and X.25 local access in every major city world-wide through SprintNet Software Creations delivers the files! -------------------------------------------------- Silicon Times Report joins names like Apogee Software, Borland, id Software, TriSoft, Interactive Gaming, PC Techniques, Coriolis, Fastgraph, PC Information Group, and many more. -------------------------------- Real-Time Credit Card Approval and Membership Upgrades The Software Download Store - for on the spot purchase/approval and download ability! -------------------------------- Call 1-800-4SWCBBS (479-2227); Fax 1-508-365-7214 for more information! ----------------------------------------------------- So, Get the latest releases from SOFTWARE CREATIONS BBS "Home of the Authors" * Software Creations, Voted #1 BBS for 1993 & 1994 * 1200/2400 V.42/MNP Lines : (508) 365-2359 2400-14.4k HST US Robotics Lines : (508) 368-7036 2400-16.8k V.32/V.42bis US Robotics lines : (508) 368-7139 14.4-28.8k V.32/V.42bis/V.fc Hayes Optima lines: (508) 365-9352 14.4-28.8k V.32/V.42bis/V.32terbo/V.fc US Robotics lines: (508) 368-3424 ======================================================================== COMPUSERVE WILL PRESENT $15.00 WORTH OF COMPLIMENTARY ONLINE TIME to the Readers of; STREPORT INTERNATIONAL ONLINE MAGAZINE """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" "The Original 16/32bit OnLine Magazine" NEW USERS; SIGN UP TODAY! CALL: 1-800-848-8199 .. Ask for operator 198 You will receive your complimentary time and be OnLine in no time at all! "Enjoy CompuServe's forums; where information is at its very best! """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" LottoMan Results: 03/11/95: four 2# matches ---------------- > From the Editor's Desk "Saying it like it is!" """""""""""""""""""""" As I stepped outside to see what the weather was going to do... I tripped over a brown box in the doorway. After noting we were in for some rather nasty weather. (Thunderstorms) I went inside to see what was in this box. Lo and behold its Windows'95! And it sez; "Final Beta Build!" How about that I mumbled to myself... they're right on schedule. That's new and different to any computer user. After reading the docs I proceeded to install this baby. While the installation took close to two hours.. (there is a reason) It really did go smoothly and efficiently. Its gorgeous! Look for a full review of Win'95 beginning with the first article next week. At this point.... all that can be said is... "Win'95 is _very_ impressive." Its much faster than WFWG 3.11. Faster in every respect of the word. The graphics, the I/O..everything. I am in hog heaven doing this week's issue with WordPerfect for Windows 6.1 running on Win'95. Look out Apple... this is a good one! Its plug n play all the way. Even the SCSI, SCSI2 and SCSI Wide goodies went right in without so much as a hiccup. Something tells me I am going to enjoy doing this review. If you are so inclined, Microsoft is going to be releasing Win'95 to some four hundred thousand users worldwide.. Give 'em a call and get yourself on the list. You won't be sorry. Ralph... Of Special Note: ---------------- STReport will be branching out further to Internet's userbase in the very near future. We've received numerous requests to receive STReport from a wide variety of Internet addresses. As a result, we're putting together an Internet distribution/mailing list for those who wish to receive STReport on a regular basis, and we'll UUENCODE each issue and mail it to you. If you're interested in being added to our mailing list, please, send your requests to either "firstname.lastname@example.org" or, RMARIANO@DELPHI.COM. Look for mailings to begin by October first. We are also considering a number of Internet ftp sites in which to post our issues for as well. Whatever we can do to make STReport available to you. we'll try it! """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" STReport's Staff DEDICATED TO SERVING YOU! """""""""""""""" Publisher -Editor """""""""""""""""" Ralph F. Mariano Lloyd E. Pulley, Editor, Current Affairs Section Editors """"""""""""""" PC SECTION AMIGA SECTION MAC SECTION ATARI SECTION ---------- ------------- ----------- ------------- R.D. Stevens R. Niles J. Deegan D. P. Jacobson STReport Staff Editors: """"""""""""""""""""""" Michael Arthur John Deegan Brad Martin John Szczepanik Paul Guillot Joseph Mirando Doyle Helms Frank Sereno John Duckworth Jeff Coe Steve Keipe Guillaume Brasseur Melanie Bell Jay Levy Jeff Kovach Marty Mankins Carl Prehn Paul Charchian Contributing Correspondents: """""""""""""""""""""""""""" Dominick J. Fontana Norman Boucher Clemens Chin Eric Jerue Ron Deal Mike Barnwell Ed Westhusing Glenwood Drake Vernon W.Smith Bruno Puglia Paul Haris Kevin Miller Craig Harris Allen Chang Tim Holt Patrick Hudlow Tom Sherwin Please, submit letters to the editor, articles, reviews, etc... via E-Mail to: CompuServe................... 70007,4454 Delphi......................... RMARIANO GEnie......................... ST.REPORT BIX............................ RMARIANO FIDONET........................ 1:112/35 FNET........................... NODE 620 ITC NET...................... 85:881/253 NEST........................ 90:21/350.0 America OnLine..................STReport Internet.............RMARIANO@DELPHI.COM IMPORTANT NOTICE ---------------- STReport, with its policy of not accepting any paid advertising, has over the years developed the reputation of "saying it like it really is". When it comes to our editorials, product evaluations, reviews and over-views, we shall always keep our readers interests first and foremost. With the user in mind, STReport further pledges to maintain the reader confidence that has been developed over the years and to continue "living up to such". All we ask is that our readers make certain the manufacturers, publishers etc., know exactly where the information about their products appeared. In closing, we shall arduously endeavor to meet and further develop the high standards of straight forwardness our readers have come to expect in each and every issue. The Staff & Editors """"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" > STR INDUSTRY REPORT LATE BREAKING INDUSTRY-WIDE NEWS """"""""""""""""""" IBM/POWER-PC/PC SECTION (I) =========================== Computer Products Update - CPU Report ------------------------ ---------- Weekly Happenings in the Computer World Issue #11 Compiled by: Lloyd E. Pulley, Sr. ******* General Computer News ******* >> Oracle Enters Video Data Market << Database software publisher Oracle Corp. is targeting the news in- dustry as a market for its Oracle Media Server video server. Oracle Vice President Farzad Dibachi is quoted as saying that Oracle is talking to a half a dozen news organizations. He predicts the quick storage and retrieval devices will make it easier for journalists on deadline to quickly organize and edit the typical newsroom's large array of news feeds coming in from the field. Oracle reportedly has a deal with Sony Corp. to develop and sell digital electronic newgathering video systems, involving Sony's hardware for video production and editing. Dibachi said Sony and Oracle will demonstrate a prototype of their digital video news system at a National Association of Broadcasters meeting next month. >> MPEG Video Standard Released << The Open PC-MPEG Consortium has released the OM-1 DOS MPEG API (Applications Programming Interface), the industry's first standard set of MPEG DOS commands for PC game developers. The organization notes that the OM-1 standard provides PC game devel- opers with a set of MPEG commands which will work on the wide variety of MPEG playback boards now entering the market. It adds that software developers will be able to produce high-quality MPEG video titles with the assurance that they will work on all PCs with OM-1 compliant MPEG playback boards. According to OM-1, the standard will allow software companies to take advantage of the video and audio compression provided by MPEG. Current digital video titles can be converted from grainy, jerky playback in a small window to full-screen, TV-like video and CD quality audio. >> Poll: Home Computing at 33 Percent << More than a third of U.S. households now have computers, according to the Software Publishers Association's fourth annual study of computers in the home. A SPA statement says, "A full 57% of IBM compatibles purchased in 1994 contained '486 chips. In addition, PC users are making far more informed and educated hardware decisions than they did one year ago. The number of respondents answering 'Don't Know' declined drastically over the past year." In addition, of all the computers purchased for home use in 1994, more than 60% of buyers said this was their first home PC. Three- quarters of both first-time and experienced PC purchasers said that at least one person in their household uses a computer at work. SPA research director David Tremblay said in the statement, "If the home PC market in 1994 were described in a word, it would be 'more.' Far more households are using PCs now than were a year ago. They are spend- ing more time on their PCs, and are using more types of application." Other findings: -:- 55% of all PCs purchased were equipped with CD-ROM drives. -:- 73% of 1994 buyers said their systems included modems and 25% said presently use an online service. -:- While the survey showed a dramatic rise in Windows use over the past year (from 53% in 1993 to 79% in 1994), only 31% of present non-Windows users said they would begin using that platform in the coming months. -:- Word processors, used on 87% of home PCs, and entertainment soft- ware (78%) are the two most commonly used types of applications on home PCs. -:- 70% of those surveyed supported the idea of a games rating sys- tem. "This coincides," says the SPA statement, "with a vast increase in the use of recreational software, with 59% of re- spondents saying they utilize their PCs for entertainment. When given a choice of rating systems, PC users favored one that discloses potentially objectionable content over a system which gave general age group recommendations by 55% to 37%." >>DEC Unveils New Starion Line << An entire Pentium-based PC line called the Starion will be offered in the retail market by Digital Equipment Corp., which says the units will start at $1,999, including monitor. The computers will carry a 3-year limited warranty. Sources quote the computer maker as saying it has signed agreements with Tandy Corp.'s Incredible Universe and Nobody Beats the Wiz to sell the Starion line. After entering the retail market last November, Digital offered Starion models exclusively through Wal-Mart Stores Inc.'s Sam's Clubs and CompUSA. >> New CD Technology Demonstrated << At the International Tape Association (ITA) annual meeting for the optical and magnetic media industry, Sony Corp. and Philips Electronics held the first public demonstration of 3M's dual-layer, single-sided CD technology. The dual-layer technology will be implemented in the 7.4GB disc players that Sony and Philips have proposed in their High Density MultiMedia CD specifications. The dual-layer demonstration used a standard-density disc with an extra information layer on it. Each dual-layer, single-sided disc will provide up to 270 minutes or four and one half hours of uninterrupted digital video. The Philips/Sony specifications will be fully backward compatible with all existing CD formats. Additionally, High Density MultiMedia discs can be produced at existing disc manufacturing facilities. >> Toshiba Marketing Tiny LCD << Japan's Toshiba Corp. has begun selling what it claims is the world's smallest liquid crystal display panel for use in portable computers. It's reported that the 9.5-inch, 0.45-kg panel is on sale for use in compact computers smaller than notebook size with a sample price of 150,000 yen. The panel can display 260,000 colors by using six-bit LCD driver integrated circuits. A Toshiba spokesman said the firm plans to start mass production of the display in May at a rate of 20,000 units a month, adding it expects Japan's LCD market will grow 40% to about 784 billion yen this year. >> Apple Stock Falls Amid Rumors << Apple Computer Co.'s stock took a beating this week. The fall is attributed to concerns over sales of its high-end Power Macintosh products, as well as rumors that a powerful rival may be about to make a major acquisition that would threaten Apple's market share. Apple insists sales of its Power Mac machines, on which it has staked much of its future, are ahead of expectations. However, analysts said investor concerns about Power Mac sales persist, due partly to conf- licting views about whether personal computer sales in general are beginning to slump. Apple said it still expects second quarter earnings of about 95 cents a share. One rumor that hurt Apple's stock is that Hewlett-Packard Co. may buy Packard Bell Electronics Inc., although Packard Bell flatly denies the story. Investors are worrying such a combination could damage Apple, since it would create a PC giant that could cut prices so much that Apple's market share would shrink further. >> Oracle Wants to be Closer to Apple << Responding to rumors that his software firm wants to take over Apple, the chief of Oracle Systems Corp. says his firm has been seeking "tigh- ter alliances" with Apple Computer Inc. Oracle CEO Larry Ellison said, "We are trying to do tighter alliances with Apple. It has not been easy; all these rumors have made them uneasy." Reports say that Oracle and Apple have an alliance to jointly produce set-top boxes for interactive TV and that Ellison has been a vocal ad- mirer of Apple's Macintosh operating system and their other computer technologies. Said Ellison, "We think they have great technology -- their OS, their QuickTime technology," referring to Apple's operating system and a new software movie innovation. He added he thinks Apple would be a better company if it only made software and not hardware also, "but he acknowledged that such a transition would be difficult for any company." >> Apple Reduces Performa, Quadra $$$ << Prices on Apple Computer Inc.'s Macintosh Performa 630 and Quadra 630 computers have been cut by up to 20% and the company says it has improved the speed of others. In a statement, Apple said it also has: -:- Increased the hard-drive configurations of its PowerBook 520 and 520c models to 240MB. -:- Doubled the speed of the internal CD-ROM drives on the Power Macintosh 6100 DOS Compatible system. Under the new pricing, $2,759 will buy a Power Macintosh 6100 DOS Compatible powered by both a PowerPC 601 microprocessor and a 486 DX2/66 microprocessor and equipped with 16MB of RAM, a SuperDrive floppy disk drive, a double-speed CD-ROM, 500MB hard disk and built-in Ethernet port. Also Apple says it cut the price of the PowerBook 520c 4/160 to $2,280 from $2,499 and the price of its Quadra 630 to $1,039 and its Performa 630 to between $1,199 and $2,049. >> Schedule+ Joins Office Suite << Microsoft Corp. says it will enhance Schedule+, a calendaring and scheduling program, and incorporate the product into the Windows 95 version of Microsoft Office. Microsoft notes that more than three million people currently use Schedule+, making it the industry's leading time- management product. Microsoft Office is a business software suite with more than 9 million users. Microsoft Schedule+ is scheduled to become available this summer, shortly after the release of Windows 95. A stand alone version will be offered for $99 ($79 for current users). >> 400,000 Win95 Beta Packs to Ship << More than 400,000 test versions of Microsoft Corp.'s Windows 95 soft- ware are to ship this month in order for beta testers to work out the bugs ahead of the official launch in August. According to Microsoft chief Bill Gates, he does not expect any more delays in the shipment of the next generation Windows. The exact sche- dule will depend on the feedback they get from the beta testers, but it is expected that shipping will start in August. >> Intel Already Planning 'P7' Chip << P6 isn't out yet, but Intel Corp. already is thinking of P7. Reports this week say that Intel is at work with partner Hewlett- Packard Co. on the next-generation microprocessor, code-named P7, which is to appear in 1997. The chip is expected to work at about twice the rate of today's top-of-the-line Intel chip, the Pentium. >> Digital Adds Three to Celebris Line << Three more Pentium-based models have been added to Digital Equipment Corp.'s Celebris desktop PC line. Digital reports the new new models are the Celebris 575, priced at $2,449, the Celebris 5100 slim-line model priced at $3,399 and the Celebris FP5100 full-profile model priced at $3,499. This brings the number of systems in the Celebris line to eight and all models now are available. >> NEC Unveils CPU for PDAs << NEC Electronics Inc. says it has developed a new high-speed, low- power 64-bit MIPS RISC- based microprocessor. The device is designed for use in personal digital assistants (PDAs) and other mobile computing systems. The company reports that the CPU, dubbed the Vr4100, is an embedded processor and is part of NEC's 64-bit MIPS RISC microprocessor series that includes the Vr4000, Vr4400 and the Vr4200. The company expects to offer sample quantities in June. "Manufacturers of battery operated devices such as PDAs and other personal communicators are demanding low-power, high-performance CPUs that will enable them to provide an attractive solution to end users," says Basheer Ahmed, a product marketing manager for NEC Electronics. NEC says the Vr4100 includes more than 450,000 transistors and has a die size of 5.0 x 5.0 millimeters. The device has an operational voltage range of 2.2 to 3.6 volts. The chip's external clock runs at 10MHz while the internal clock operates at a maximum 40MHz. >> Apple Named Tops in Multimedia << Market researcher Dataquest has named Apple Computer Inc. as the leading worldwide multimedia personal computer vendor. Reports are that Apple, which sold 2.4 million CD-ROM-based units in 1994, has 22.9% of the worldwide market share of multimedia personal computers. In its 1995 "Multimedia Market Trends" report, Dataquest reported that the worldwide multimedia personal computer market grew by 312% last year, largely driven by a strong U.S. home computer market. Multimedia PC shipments reached 10.3 million units in 1994 -- a dramatic increase from the 2.5 million units sold in 1993. Dataquest defines a multimedia personal computer as one that has a CD-ROM player and sound capabilities. >> Canada Finds Virus Just in Time << A potentially damaging virus in the electronic version of the Canadian government's budget has been found just before it was distributed across the country. Sources say that Medialand Ltd., an Ottawa software duplicator, detected the virus as it was preparing to duplicate for the government thousands of copies of the budget on diskette. This is the first year that Canada provided the complete text of the federal budget and all its supporting documents in electronic form. Banks, accountants, and tax consultants can load the government software into their computers to provide fast analysis for their clients. Canada's Finance Department screened the budget's master disks twice for viruses before turning them over to Medialand for duplication, and found no problems. As an added precaution, Medialand used an advanced screening system named ThunderByte to check the master disks one more time -- and this time spotted a virus. >> New Zealand May Be Cut From 'Net << If a new anti-pornography bill becomes law, New Zealand's primary link to the Internet may have to be cut. Reports from Wellington, New Zealand say parliament member Trevor Rogers "is pushing his Technology and Crimes Reform Bill through the house, saying it was designed to prevent computer pornography from falling into the hands of minors." Officials with Waikato University in Hamilton, which is the country's main Internet connection, are quoted as saying implementing the require- ments of the bill would be impossible as it stands. Says AFP, "The bill proposes hefty fines and confiscation of equip- ment for anyone who broadcasts, transmits or receives 'objectionable material' over their network for pecuniary gain. However, it gives a defense to 'network operators' who have no knowledge or reason to believe that the information was objectionable." The bill defines "network operators" as telecommunications companies which are registered under the Telecommunications Act, such as Telecom, Clear and BellSouth, but doesn't include third-party operators, such as anyone else who runs a network for profit. John Houlker, manager of the Waikato gateway, said the national links would also have to go, adding, "We will take further legal advice, but so far it looks like we would have to shut down." Also, Victoria University would be forced to sever its network con- nections if the bill went through in its present form, according to Frank March, its director of information services. Meanwhile, MP Rogers says opponents are losing sight of the intent of his bill, which he says is to prevent harmful pornographic material ending up in the hands of minors. He said it was never his intention to restrict information flows, and he was prepared to "substantially change and clarify" the bill to make it work. And New Zealand Attorney-General Paul East is advising parliament the measure would breach the Bill of Rights guarantee to freedom of expression and appears to violate the prohibition against unreasonable search or seizure. _______________________________________ > FIFO TIPS STR FOCUS! """""""""""""""""""" FIFO & 16550A TYPE SERIAL PORTS =============================== If you are using WFW, you will want to check if the QLII installed a comm driver. In your system.ini file, there is a section called [boot]. Make sure there is a line that says COMM.DRV=COMM.DRV, if not, change it. Also, I do not remember if I sent you this. Make sure you have done these changes. BTW, S11 register changes the dial speed. Windows for Workgroups 3.11 COMM.DRV ------------------------------------ Unlike previous versions of Windows 3.x and Windows for Workgroups 3.1, WFW 3.11 uses a new and different internal architecture for the Com port driver. The COMM.DRV in WFW 3.11 uses what is known as the "VCOMM architecture". The COMM.DRV supplied with WFW 3.11 can properly handle 16550A type serial ports, but ONLY if additional entries are inserted into the [386 Enh] section of SYSTEM.INI. By default, only the receive FIFO is enabled on a 16550A serial port. Without the additional SYSTEM.INI entries, the transmit FIFO capability of the 16550A serial port will be inactive. If the transmit FIFO is not activated, 14400bps, and even 9600bps, fax SENDING may experience random or frequent failures. Note: Microsoft's Technical Reference documentation on serial port FIFO settings continues to be INCORRECT. The following settings were determined by examining the WFW 3.11 SERIAL.386 source code and verifying FIFO operation using a hardware monitor. Enabling FIFO support in WFW 3.11 --------------------------------- To fully enable the FIFO capabilities of a 16550A serial port, insert the following entries into the [386Enh] section of SYSTEM.INI; COMXFifo=2 <-- This entry can be omitted, but if present, MUST be set to 2, not 0 or 1 COMXTxFifo=1 <-- 1 activates 16 byte (non configurable) transmit FIFO, default of 0 deactivates transmit FIFO COMXRxTrigger=8 <-- Receive FIFO IRQ threshold, must be 1, 4, 8, or 14 (if entry is omitted, default is 8) - where X is the Com port number Note: These entries will be ignored if: --------------------------------------- * You do not have a 16550A type serial port * You are not running the VCOMM version of COMM.DRV (which comes with WFW 3.11) * You are using WFXCOMM.DRV (which is not compatible with WFW 3.11) ___________________________________________ > MATH ACE! STR Feature Frankie's Corner """"""""""""""""""""" The Kids' Computing Corner -------------------------- Math Ace CD-ROM versions for Windows and Macintosh ages 8 to 14 suggested retail $39.95 from Sanctuary Woods 1825 South Grant San Mateo, California 94402 415-286-6110 IBM Requirements Macintosh Requirements CPU: 386SX CPU: ? RAM: 4 megs RAM: 4 megs Video: SVGA Video: 256 colors/13" monitor Hdisk: 1 meg Hdisk: 1 meg CD-ROM: Single-speed CD-ROM: Single-speed OS: Windows 3.1 OS: System 7.0 Misc: Sound card, mouse by Frank Sereno Math Ace combines an arcade game with animated math lessons to provide a rich learning experience. More than three thousand math programs involving seventy math, geometry and algebra concepts are presented to the student. Questions advance in topic and difficulty as the child develops proficiency at each level. The program consists of several modules. The first is the arcade game which is played on a game field of computer chips. Children will guide a robot helper, Bit-Bot, to surround a virus which destroys the math archives by consuming the computer chips. The child can choose from two levels of questions and three virus speeds. In higher levels, two or more viruses must be eradicated. Some twists are added to the game in higher levels. The virus will challenge players to a duel to prevent them from capturing a chip. If the challenge is refused or lost, another virus may hatch. Winning a duel will scramble an unhatched virus egg. The duels become more complex as the child advances in the game. Another feature is the code breaking game. Some chips will have a key on them. Winning that chip will start the code game. The child must rearrange the six numbers to match the computer code. The player is not penalized for an incorrect answer, but his last three guesses are shown on the screen to aid in breaking the code. This game module will not make a youngster forget Doom, but it is challenging while teaching children math concepts. The next module is the Smart Lab. The child can choose to study specific concepts at a particular grade level or he can answer random questions. On the right-hand portion of the screen is a Help Panel which will display and explain several problems similar to the one to be solved. The top of the screen shows an answer meter to show the child's level of knowledge. Once a series of questions has been answered, the program will show the percentage of correct answers, the length of time between each correct answer. It will also recommend the speed of the virus that the child should compete against in the arcade game. The program also includes an indexed reference section that contains text information to rival most mathematics textbooks. The information can be rather dull and complicated. Personally, I think presenting the lessons orally would make it more interesting and easier to digest. The final section of the program is the Video Bytes section. Here math concepts are presented to the child in humorous animations. About thirty topics are covered with forty-five minutes of video. Most of the concepts are simpler and for younger students. These animations are very well done. I think older students would have benefitted if more complex concepts had been given such video treatments as well. The graphics in Math Ace are varying in quality. The basic game screen is a bit plain and could use more color to be eye-catching. Some animations are excellent while others are merely good. The sounds are good. Sometimes it is difficult to understand Bit-Bot or the virus because those voices were altered to sound more computer-like. The music is okay but I didn't find it appealing for my tastes. Math Ace uses a point and click interface. In some screens, the interface had many options which could confuse younger players. Help is available for most screens but it is text rather than spoken. The program user manual explains the program very thoroughly but contains no information for troubleshooting problems. Technical assistance is available by calling directly to Sanctuary Woods at your expense. Math Ace can be challenging and stimulating but it doesn't rank high on fun. The game requires math skill and some strategy but it doesn't provide much excitement. Many Video Bytes are amusing but those will only be viewed a few times before the child memorizes and tires of them. The program does have a lot of educational value. I was amazed to learn how much higher math I had forgotten since high school. I do believe the program would be a better teacher if more audiovisuals had been used to explain more difficult math concepts. Math Ace is a fairly good value. It does have a sound educational basis but the gameplay may not be enticing enough for children to take full advantage of it. The program includes a $10 offer for Wizard, an add-on designed for students in grades nine through twelve. Also included is an offer, valid through May 31, through which Sanctuary Woods will donate one copy of the program to your local school system. The program does not come with a satisfaction guarantee but defective media will be replaced for free during the first ninety days. The licensing agreement does not allow the purchaser to sell this product without the permission of the publisher and the warranty cannot be assumed by a second buyer. My recommendation is that you preview this program before purchasing. Ratings Graphics ............ 7.5 Sounds .............. 8.0 Interface ........... 8.5 Play Value .......... 7.0 Educational Value ... 9.0 Bang for the Buck ... 7.0 Average ............. 7.83 Thanks for reading! __________________________________________ > Creative NewsWire STR Spotlight Creative Technology News & Updates """"""""""""""""""""""""""""""" Creative Announces Sound Blaster Multimedia Home 4x Edutainment and Productivity Multimedia Upgrade Kit Includes High Performance Quad-Speed CD-ROM Technology SINGAPORE -- March 1, 1995 -- Creative Technology Ltd. (Nasdaq: CREAF) today announced Sound Blaster Multimedia Home 4x, the newest addition to its expanding multimedia upgrade kit product line. Sound Blaster Multimedia Home 4x offers an internal quadruple speed CD-ROM drive, Sound Blaster 16, speakers and a hands-free microphone. With 24 software titles from leading publishers including Microsoft, Electronic Arts and Intuit, Sound Blaster Multimedia Home 4x is the ultimate upgrade kit for both edutainment and productivity. The kit has a suggested retail price of USD$579 and is expected to ship in March of 1995. Sound Blaster Multimedia Home 4x features industry standard hardware. The quad-speed CD-ROM drive provides a 600KB per second transfer rate; a better than 250ms access rate; and is multi-session, Kodak Photo CD-compatible. Its IDE (Integrated Drive Electronics) interface, unlike proprietary inter-faces, is better suited to handle the high-speed transfer rates of quad-speed drives. Sound Blaster 16, which provides CD quality stereo sampling and playback, is upgradeable to wave table synthesis for symphonic instrument sounds and special effects. "Not only does this kit offer the consumer the latest in quad-speed CD-ROM technology, the bundled software represents a tremendous value," said W.H. Sim, chairman and chief executive officer of Creative Technology. "With 11 premiere titles from Microsoft and additional titles from other software vendors, the Sound Blaster Multimedia Home 4x kit is a complete offering for the whole family." Sound Blaster Multimedia Home 4x features the following software from The Microsoft Home Collection: Microsoft Cinemania '95 Microsoft Golf, Multimedia Edition Microsoft Encarta '95 Microsoft Bookshelf '94 Microsoft Ancient Lands Microsoft Dangerous Creatures Microsoft Musical Instruments Microsoft Works 3.0, Multimedia Edition Microsoft Publisher Microsoft Scenes: Undersea Collection Microsoft Publisher Design Pack: Special Occasions Three entertainment titles from ORIGIN Systems, Pagan:Ultima VIII, Strike Commander and Wing Commander II; two entertainment titles from Electronic Arts, Syndicate Plus and Seawolf; one productivity offering from Intuit, Quicken Deluxe; and seven audio utilities from Creative are also bundled in the kit. "Sound Blaster Multimedia Home 4x gives the PC user an interactive center to learn, work and play," said Kim Federico, product marketing manager, multimedia kits for Creative Labs, Inc., Creative Technology's U.S. sub- sidiary. "It's perfect for family use because it brings together quality hardware and strong educational, entertainment and productivity software from multimedia leaders." Creative Technology Ltd. develops, manufactures and markets a family of sound and video multimedia products for PCs under the Blaster family name. The company's Sound Blaster sound platform enables PCs to produce high- quality audio for entertainment, educational, music and productivity applications, and has been accepted as the industry standard sound platform for PC-based software. # # # Sound Blaster and Sound Blaster Multimedia Home 4x are trademarks of Creative Technology Ltd. E-mu is a registered trademark of E-mu Systems, Inc., ShareVision is a registered trademark of ShareVision Technology, Inc., Microsoft is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation, Intuit is a registered trademark of Intuit, Inc. and Electronic Arts is a registered trademark of Electronic Arts. All other products mentioned herein are trademarks of their respective owners and are hereby recognized as such. Creative Technology Ships New Edition of Best-Selling Multimedia Kit Sound Blaster Discovery CD Revamped to Offer Exciting New Software Titles SINGAPORE -- February 6, 1995 -- Creative Technology Ltd. (Nasdaq: CREAF), the leading multimedia provider, today began shipping a new edition of the highly popular Sound Blaster Discovery CD multimedia kit. Sound Blaster Discovery CD New Edition combines the Sound Blaster 16 technology with added educational and entertainment software titles from EA*Kids and ORIGIN Systems respectively, two subdivisions of Electronic Arts. The previous edition of Discovery CD, in addition to being the best-selling multimedia upgrade kit in 1994, earned PC World's World Class Award and Multimedia World's Reader's Choice Award for the best multimedia kit. "The PC is playing an increasing role in children's education and is making it easier for adults to access data," said W.H. Sim, Creative's chairman and chief executive officer. "By bundling quality educational and entertainment software titles in Discovery CD New Edition, Creative will further its commitment to provide solid, high-performance progressive products at attractive price points." With a suggested retail price of USD$379.95, Discovery CD New Edition includes a total of 18 titles together with the same great hardware provided in the previous edition of the kit. Besides Creative's Sound Blaster 16, the industry standard 16-bit sound card, Discovery CD New Edition features a double-speed, internal CD-ROM drive and stereo speakers. Four new entertainment titles, Electronic Arts' Syndicate Plus, ORIGIN Systems' Pagan: Ultima VIII, Strike Commander and Wing Commander II; and two innovative educational offerings, EA*Kids' Peter Pan: A Story Painting Adventure and Eagle Eye Mysteries: Original, are bundled within the kit. Also provided in the kit are six standard utility programs and the following software titles: The Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia Altamira Composer SE HSC's Digital Morph Aldus Gallery Effects, Volume 1 HSC's Kai's Power Tools Aldus PhotoStyler SE "By offering consumers an exciting combination of strong titles from Electronic Arts, one of the top educational and entertainment software publishers in the world, along with the foremost in sound card technology from the PC audio leader, Creative continues to provide consumers with unprecedented value and demonstrate its position as the industry's primary multimedia provider," said Rich Buchanan, director of video and CD-ROM technology. Creative Technology Ltd. develops, manufactures and markets a family of sound and video multimedia products for PCs under the Blaster family name. The company's Sound Blaster sound platform enables PCs to produce high- quality audio for entertainment, educational, music and productivity app- lications, and has been accepted as the industry standard sound platform for PC-based software. # # # Sound Blaster and Sound Blaster Discovery CD are trademarks of Creative Technology Ltd. E-mu is a registered trademark of E-mu Systems, Inc. and ShareVision is a registered trademark of ShareVision Technology, Inc. All other products mentioned herein are trademarks of their respective owners and are hereby recognized as such. Creative Announces TV Coder External New Output Device is Portable and Features up to 16.7 Million Colors SINGAPORE -- March 1, 1995-- Creative Technology Ltd. (Nasdaq:CREAF) today announced TV Coder External, an external video output solution that features up to 16.7 million colors and allows users to connect a PC or notebook computer to virtually any video display device, including a tele- vision, RGB projector and VCR. Because the product is portable and easy to use, individuals now have a simple way to bring full multimedia presentations to any video display unit. TV Coder External has a suggested retail price of USD$229.95 and will begin shipping in March. "TV Coder External is a practical tool for individuals who want to enhance the effectiveness of their presentations by enlarging them from a standard VGA screen," said Hock Leow, vice president of video and graphic products for Creative Labs, Creative Technology's U.S. subsidiary. "For example, sales people can bring their presentation to a large TV or projection system through a TV Coder External connection. The product can also assist instructors in creating their own training video by attaching it to a VCR to record images from a computer onto a tape." Features Of TV Coder External TV Coder External provides multiple video output connections, including composite video, S-Video and RGB output for projection, and is compatible with virtually all SVGA cards. It features output of up to 16.7 million colors at 640x480 in NTSC and PAL modes and up to 64K colors at 800x600 in PAL mode. The product includes simultaneous output of both VGA and video timings, and a built-in filter for a flicker free, easy to read output display. The user can adjust brightness, contrast and color for optimal viewing conditions. In addition, TV Coder External supports both Microsoft Windows and DOS interfaces, and is compatible with any PC. "Even gaming enthusiasts will enjoy using TV Coder External which can turn any game, usually played on a 14-inch computer screen, into a larger interactive entertainment experience on their television," added Leow. Creative Technology Ltd. develops, manufactures and markets a family of sound and video multimedia products for PCs under the Blaster family name. The company's Sound Blaster sound platform enables PCs to produce high- quality audio for entertainment, educational, music and productivity app- lications, and has been accepted as the industry standard sound platform for PC-based software. # # # Sound Blaster and TV Coder are trademarks of Creative Technology Ltd. E-mu is a registered trademark of E-mu Systems, Inc. and ShareVision is a registered trademark of ShareVision Technology, Inc. Microsoft and Windows are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation. All other products mentioned herein are trademarks of their respective owners and are hereby recognized as such. Creative Announces Sound Blaster Value CD Multimedia Upgrade Kit New Product Provides Cost-Effective Entry Into Multimedia SINGAPORE -- February 13, 1995 -- Creative Technology Ltd. (Nasdaq: CREAF) today announced Sound Blaster Value CD, a new multimedia upgrade kit that offers high performance hardware and twelve quality software titles at a suggested retail price of USD$349.95. Sound Blaster Value CD is a solution for PC users who desire a complete multimedia system and the flexibility to customize their own software collection. The product includes a 16-bit Sound Blaster sound card that is upgradeable to advanced signal processing and wave table synthesis. Sound Blaster Value CD is expected to ship this month. "Whether you're an end-user or systems integrator making a purchase for the home, school or corporate environment, Sound Blaster Value CD is a cost-effective way to incorporate multimedia technology into your PC," said W. H. Sim, chairman and chief executive officer of Creative Technology. "Users will find that a multimedia computer can provide them with a complete center for reference, interactive entertainment and productivity." Sound Blaster Value CD features Sound Blaster 16, a double-speed CD-ROM drive, speakers, six utility titles from Creative and the following bundled software. The Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia HSC Digital Morph Aldus PhotoStyler 2.0 SE Altamira Composer SE Aldus Gallery Effects, Volume 1 HSC Kai's Power Tools "Sound Blaster Value CD is a wonderful way for PC users to enter into multimedia computing because it provides industry standard hardware and a strong foundation of software titles on which users can build," said Kim Federico, product marketing manager, multimedia kits, for Creative Labs, Inc., Creative Technology's U.S. subsidiary. Creative Technology Ltd. develops, manufactures and markets a family of sound and video multimedia products for PCs under the Blaster family name. The company's Sound Blaster sound platform enables PCs to produce high- quality audio for entertainment, educational, music and productivity applications, and has been accepted as the industry standard sound platform for PC-based software. # # # Sound Blaster and Sound Blaster Value CD are trademarks of Creative Tech- nology Ltd. E-mu is a registered trademark of E-mu Systems, Inc. and ShareVision is a registered trademark of ShareVision Technology, Inc. All other products mentioned herein are trademarks of their respective owners and are hereby recognized as such. Creative Announces Wave Blaster II for the Sound Blaster 16 Family New Wave Table Synthesis Daughterboard Builds on the Success of Sound Blaster AWE32 SINGAPORE -- January 23, 1995 -- Creative Technology Ltd. (Nasdaq: CREAF) today announced Wave Blaster II, the newest addition to its expanding Blaster family of innovative multimedia products for the PC. Wave Blaster II is a general MIDI wave table synthesis daughterboard for Creative's line of upgradeable Sound Blaster 16 audio cards. Wave table synthesis enables users to produce realistic instrument sounds. Wave Blaster II, which has a suggested retail price of US $199.95 and begins shipping today, uses E-mu Systems' EMU8000, the same integrated audio digital signal processor found on Creative's popular Sound Blaster AWE32. In 1994, Sound Blaster AWE32 received much acclaim through numerous awards, including PC/Computing's prestigious MVP (Most Valuable Product) Award in the multimedia hardware category. Sound Blaster AWE32 represented 19 percent of Creative's North American sound card sales during the fourth quarter of last year. The product also ranked third out of ten listed on Ingram Micro's Best Seller list in December. "Because of the dramatic acceptance of the Sound Blaster AWE32 platform, an increasing number of wave table software titles have become available in the marketplace. As a result, the demand for high performance, wave table synthesis audio boards continues to grow," said Steffanee Foster, audio product marketing manager for Creative Labs, Inc., Creative Technology's U.S. subsidiary. "Wave Blaster II is a perfect solution for Sound Blaster 16 audio card users who want enhanced audio playback capabilities from their entertainment titles as well as for those who want to create and edit their own high-quality MIDI music." Using E-mu Systems' patented digital sample playback synthesis, Wave Blaster II provides 2 MB ROM of samples, including 128 instruments and sound effects and over 400 percussion sounds. The product also incorp- orates 32-note, 16 channel polyphony. Wave Blaster II supports General MIDI, Sound Canvas, and MT-32 sound sets. Additionally, it offers users special effects such as pan, chorus, reverb and QSound. Included with Wave Blaster II is Cakewalk Apprentice for Windows, a 256 track graphic MIDI sequencer that has an interface that is easy to use and allows users to view and edit music in piano roll, event list and staff notation. A MIDI adapter cable is included for connecting MIDI instruments to Sound Blaster 16 audio cards. Creative Technology Ltd. develops, manufactures and markets a family of sound and video multimedia products for PCs under the Blaster family name. The company's Sound Blaster sound platform enables PCs to produce high- quality audio for entertainment, educational, music and productivity applications, and has been accepted as the industry standard sound platform for PC-based software. CONTACT INFORMATION ------------------- Theresa Pulido Lisa Kimura Creative Labs, Inc. Copithorne & Bellows (408) 428-6600, ext. 6416 (415) 284-5200, ext. 209 Creative Technology Ltd. was incorporated in 1983 and is based in Singapore. Creative Technology's U.S. subsidiaries include Creative Labs, Inc., E-mu Systems, Inc., Digicom Systems, Inc. and ShareVision Technology, Inc. Creative also has other subsidiaries in China, Europe, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore and Taiwan. The company's stock is traded on Nasdaq under the symbol CREAF and on the Stock Exchange of Singapore. # # # Sound Blaster and Wave Blaster are trademarks of Creative Technology Ltd. E-mu is a registered trademark of E-mu Systems, Inc. and ShareVision is a registered trademark of ShareVision Technology, Inc. All other products mentioned herein are trademarks of their respective owners and recognized as such. """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" A T T E N T I O N -- A T T E N T I O N -- A T T E N T I O N FARGO PRIMERA PRO COLOR PRINTERS - 600DPI For a limited time only; If you wish to have a FREE sample printout sent to you that demonstrates FARGO Primera & Primera Pro SUPERIOR QUALITY 600dpi 24 bit Photo Realistic Color Output, please send a Self Addressed Stamped Envelope [SASE] (business sized envelope please) to: STReport's Fargo Printout Offer P.O. Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32205-6155 Folks, the FARGO Primera Pro has GOT to be the best yet. Its far superior to the newest of Color Laser Printers selling for more than three times as much. Its said that ONE Picture is worth a thousand words. Send for this sample now. Guaranteed you will be amazed at the superb quality. (please, allow at least a one week turn-around) A T T E N T I O N -- A T T E N T I O N -- A T T E N T I O N """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" :HOW TO GET YOUR OWN GENIE ACCOUNT: _________________________________ Set your communications software to Half Duplex (or Local Echo) Call: (with modem) 800-638-8369. Upon connection type HHH (RETURN after that). Wait for the U#= prompt. Type: XTX99587,CPUREPT then, hit RETURN. GENIE Information Services copyright 1995 by General Electric Information Services/GENIE, reprinted by permission """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" ___ ___ _____ _______ /___| /___| /_____| /_______/ The Macintosh RoundTable /____|/____| /__/|__| /__/ ________________________ /_____|_____|/__/_|__|/__/ /__/|____/|__|________|__/ /__/ |___/ |__|_/ |__|_/____ Managed by SyndiComm /__/ |__/ |__|/ |__|______/ An Official Forum of the International Computer Users Group *** STReport available in MAC RT *** ASCII TEXT for ALL GENIE users! MAC/APPLE SECTION (II) ====================== John Deegan, Editor (Temp) > STR Editor's Mail Call "...a place for the readers to be heard" """""""""""""""""""""" Editor's MailBag """""""""""""""" Messages * NOT EDITED * for content ----------------------------------- Subject: #88296-Apple mktg fails again - Msg Number: 88300 From: Larry Buchan 100012,651 To: Lofty Becker(SYSOP) 76703,4054 Forum: MACCLUB Sec: 03-Community Square Date: 12-Mar-95 19:26:45 (It also, in my opinion, means that those of us who have built up expertise on a particular platform are a little defensive about that - and upset at the thought that our hard-won investment will be of little value. Yeah
-- I told my students this week about the "baby duck syndrome". The first thing you see becomes "mother" and you follow it HW or SW wise for ever! As to file naming, I don't see why you prefer a system that disallows longer file names. Nobody makes you use more than two characters if you prefer ( Simply because so many people [ ie 3rd party APP providers ] WILL USE long filenames -- simply BECAUSE the facility is there. That means I have to do a LOT more typing to get the filename specified. Apple has never limited who can develop for its machines. At one point it had a "certified developer" program that required some showing of likely capacity to produce software. OK -- I have to admit I'm talking of the late '70s to mid '80s. It just struck me that Apple programming was confined to a pretty closed and elitist society. It's so far back though that I've probably confused several related issues for other firms. As a footnote -- I've just read ST1108.ZIP in the IBMSW forum SILICON TIMES REPORT ==================== INTERNATIONAL ONLINE MAGAZINE ============================= from STR Electronic Publishing Inc. A subsidiary of STR Worldwide CompNews Inc. February 24, 1995 No. 1108 ====================================================================== And it's very interesting on the Apple vs IBM issue -- AND on opinions from an Amiga/Atari [ I can never tell the difference ] convert to Win95 . Maybe interest you to read it. It certainly filled me in on the DETAILS of the opposing claims which I hadn't read to date. I'll watch future issues with interest. March 30th appears to be the day of decisions ?? Larry Larry, I am that "convert" and believe me, when I say I ran MAC wares for quite some time on my Atari with the Spectre Emulator I did. I might add, I enjoyed the environment. But.. Now, with all that behind me and seeing all the powerful programs found on the mac also appearing with great haste on the PC platform.. (Where I am now and have been for three years) things are rapidly changing. Photoshop V 3.0 from Adobe, for example, on the PC in Win'95 is a veritable powerhouse and 32bit speed demon all wrapped in one. It all happening as fast a one of those microwave popcorn bags grow. As the "video" news breaks ...we'll have there for you. Ralph... **** Date: 03-14-95 Msg # 2 From: TDAUBENSPECK Conf: (0) New Mail To: RMARIANO Stat: Public Subj: petetion Read: Yes Hi. I just read your most recent newletter (which I enjoy weekly), and found a bit to complain about in the section about censorship. Specifically, it is not a good idea to ask people to place their names on a petetion that they haven't read. Even if they are told it is a good idea by a respected person like yourself. I would prefer to think that folks would have a chance to review the bill itself (on the internet?) and then have the chance to read the petetion statement before signing on. We have the technology. You have to admit that signing a blank check is not a good idea. Tracy Daubenspec Tracy, We felt that the issue of censorship on the internet was so important that the readers should be made aware of the situation. But you are correct and we appreciuate your taking the time to let us hear from you. Here is the petition and the signature instructions as you request. Ralph... Date: 03-07-95 Msg # 7172 From: PAUL SIMARD Conf: (121) ITCSysopOpsE To: ALL Stat: Public Subj: Net Laws Read: Yes I had a user upload this to my bbs. I have found it to be interesting and figure others will too. Since it affects us all. *** PROTECT THE MAIL-NETS READ THIS MESSAGE *** This document is an electronic Petition Statement to the U.S. Congress regarding pending legislation, the"Communications Decency Act of 1995" (S. 314) which will have, if passed, very serious negative ramifications for freedom of expression on Usenet, the Internet, and all electronic networks. The proposed legislation would remove guarantees of privacy and free speech on all electronic networks, including the Internet, and may even effectively close them down as a medium to exchange ideas and information. For an excellent analysis of this Bill by the Center for Democracy and T echnology (CDT), refer to the Appendix attached at the end of this docum ent. The text to S. 314 is also included in this Appendix. This document is somewhat long, but the length is necessary to give you sufficient information to make an informed decision. Time is of the ess ence, we are going to turn this petition and the signatures in on 3/16/9 5, so if you are going to sign this please do so ASAP or at least before midnight Wednesday, March 15, 1995. Even if you read this petition after the due date, please submit your si gnature anyway as we expect Congress to continue debating these issues i n the foreseeable future and the more signatures we get, the more influe nce the petition will have on discussion. And even if Congress rejects S. 314 while signatures are being gathered, do submit your signature anyway for the same reason. Please do upload this petition statement as soon as possible to any BBS and on-line service in your area. If you have access to one of the major national on-line services such as CompuServe, Prodigy, AOL, etc., do try to upload it there. We are trying to get at least 5000 signatures. Even more signatures are entirely possible if we each put in a little eff ort to inform others, such as friends and coworkers, about the importanc e of this petition to electronic freedom of expression. Here is a brief table of contents: (1) Introduction (this section) (2) The Petition Statement (3) Instructions for signing this petition (4) Credits (Appendix) Analysis and text of S. 314 (LONG but excellent) ******(2) The Petition Statement In united voice, we sign this petition against passage of S. 314 (the " Communications Decency Act of 1995") for these reasons: S. 314 would prohibit not only individual speech that is "obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, or indecent", but would prohibit any provider of te lecommunications service from carrying such traffic, under threat of stiff penalty. Even aside from the implications for free speech, this would cause an undue - and unjust - burden upon operators of the various telecommunications services. In a time when the citizenry and their law makers alike are calling for and passing "no unfunded mandates" laws to the benefit of the states, it is unfortunate that Congress might seek to impose unfunded mandates upon businesses that provide the framework for the information age. An additional and important consideration is the technical feasibility of requiring the sort of monitoring this bill would necessitate. The financial burden in and of itself - in either manpower or technology to handle such monitoring (if even legal under the Electronic Communication s Privacy Act) - would likely cause many smaller providers to go out of business, and most larger providers to seriously curtail their services. The threat of such penalty alone would result in a chilling effect in the telecommunications service community, not only restricting the types of speech expressly forbidden by the bill, but creating an environment contrary to the Constitutional principles of free speech, press, and assembly - principles which entities such as the Internet embody as nothing has before. By comparison, placing the burden for content control upon each individual user is surprisingly simple in the online and interactive world, and there is no legitimate reason to shift that burden to providers who carry that content. Unlike traditional broadcast media, networked media is comparatively easy to screen on the user end - giving the reader, viewer, or participant unparalleled control over his or her own information environment. All without impacting or restricting what any other user wishes to access. This makes regulation such as that threatened by this S. 314 simply unnecessary. In addition, during a period of ever-increasing commercial interest in arenas such as the Internet, restriction and regulation of content or the flow of traffic across the various telecommunications services would have serious negative economic effects. The sort of regulation proposed by this bill would slow the explosive growth the Internet has seen, giving the business community reason to doubt the medium's commercial appeal. We ask that the Senate halt any further progress of this bill. We ask that the Senate be an example to Congress as a whole, and to the nation at large - to promote the general welfare as stated in the Preamble to the Constitution by protecting the free flow of information and ideas across all of our telecommunications services. ******(3) Instructions for signing the petition ====================================== Instructions for Signing This Petition ====================================== It must first be noted that this is a petition, not a vote. By "signing " it you agree with *all* the requests made in the petition. If you do not agree with everything in this petition, then your only recourse is to not sign it. In addition, all e-mail signatures will be submitted to Congress, the President of the United States, and the news media. Including your full name is optional, but *very highly encouraged* as that would add to the effectiveness of the petition. Signing via an anonymous remailer is highly discouraged, but not forbidden, as an attempt will be made to separately tally signatures from anonymous remailers. Because this is a Petition to the U.S. Congress, we ask that you state, as instructed below, whether or not you are a U.S. citizen. We do encourage non-U.S. citizens to sign, but their signatures will be tallied separately. Signing this petition is not hard, but to make sure your signature is not lost or miscounted, please follow these directions EXACTLY: 1) Prepare an e-mail message. In the main body (NOT theSubject line) of your e-mail include the ONE-LINE statement: SIGNED You need not include the "<" and ">" characters. 'SIGNED' should be capitalized. As stated above, your full name is optional, but highly recommended. If you do supply your name, please don't use a pseudonym or nickname, or your first name -- it's better to just leave it blank if it's not your full and real name. If you are a U.S. citizen, please include at the end of the signature line a 'YES',and if you are not, a 'NO'. All signatures will be tallied whether or not you are a U.S. Citizen **************************************************** Example: My e-mail signature would be: SIGNED email@example.com Dave C. Hayes YES **************************************************** 2) Please DON'T include a copy of this petition, nor any other text, in your e-mail message. If you have comments to make, send e-mail to me personally, and NOT to the special petition e-mail signature address. 3) Send your e-mail message containing your signature to the following Internet e-mail address and NOT to me: PLEASE, WE NEED EACH OF OUR READERS TO DO THIS NOW.... send an e-mail message to: S314firstname.lastname@example.org ********************************************************************** IMPORTANT NOTICE! ================= STReport International OnLine Magazine is available every week for your reading pleasure on DELPHI. STReport's readers are invited to join DELPHI and become a part of an extremely friendly community of enthusiastic computer users there. SIGNING UP WITH DELPHI ====================== Using a personal computer and modem, members worldwide access DELPHI services via a local phone call JOIN --DELPHI -------------- Via modem, dial up DELPHI at 1-800-695-4002 then... When connected, press RETURN once or twice and... At Password: type STREPORT and press RETURN. DELPHI's 20/20 Advantage Plan 20 Hours for Only $20! ----------------------------- Advantage Members have always enjoyed the lowest DELPHI access rates available. On the new 20/20 Advantage Plan, members receive their first 20 hours of access each month for only $20. If you happen to meet someone OnLine or find some other diversion, don't worry because additional usage is only $1.80 per hour. 20/20 Advantage rates apply for access via SprintNet or Tymnet from within the continental United States during home time or via direct dial around the clock. Home Time is from 6pm to 6am weekdays. Access during business time carries a surcharge of $9 per hour. These rates apply for most services, but note that there are some surcharged areas on DELPHI which are clearly marked with a "$" sign. Who is eligible to take advantage of the plan? Any DELPHI member in good standing. Applications are reviewed and subject to approval by Delphi Internet Services Corporation. It's easy to join. If you meet the eligibility requirements, you can apply OnLine -- at any time -- for membership in the DELPHI 20/20 Advantage Plan. Your membership becomes active at 4 a.m. Eastern Time on the first billing day of the following month. The $20 charge will be billed to you at the beginning of the month to which it applies. Any portion of the 20 hours not used in any month does not carry forward into the next month. Advantage rates may be changed with 30 days notice given OnLine. TRY DELPHI FOR $1 AN HOUR! For a limited time, you can become a trial member of DELPHI, and receive 5 hours of evening and weekend access during this month for only $5. If you're not satisfied, simply cancel your account before the end of the calendar month with no further obligation. If you keep your account active, you will automatically be enrolled in DELPHI's 10/4 Basic Plan, where you can use up to 4 weekend and evening hours a month for a minimum $10 monthly charge, with additional hours available at $3.96. But hurry, this special trial offer will expire soon! To take advantage of this limited offer, use your modem to dial 1-800-365-4636. Press once or twice. When you get the Password: prompt, type IP26 and press again. Then, just answer the questions and within a day or two, you'll officially be a member of DELPHI! DELPHI-It's the BEST Value and getting BETTER all the time! -* ANNOUNCING: DELPHI INTERNET JET *- -------------------------------------- Windows-based graphic interface for the otherwise text-only Delphi online service. In addition to providing the user with a graphic interface, Delphi Internet Jet can be configured to automatically gather Delphi Internet e-mail and forum messages, and place them into a QWK packet for the user's existing QWK mail reader! Complete instructions for setup, operation, Delphi membership, and a FREE five hour trial included in the INTJET.TXT file. ************************************************************ ATARI/JAG SECTION (III) ======================= Dana Jacobson, Editor > From the Atari Editor's Desk "Saying it like it is!" """""""""""""""""""""""""""" In the last week or so, I've come to appreciate my Atari computers just a little bit more. Ironically, this appreciation is due to a couple of my employees who have recently purchased PC systems. Even more ironic is the fact they aren't experiencing problems with their machines to make me appreciate mine. Quite the contrary, they're having a ball. Listening to them, both novices, talk about the fun that they're having exploring this technology reminds me of the excitement that I had when I got my first ST back in 1987. I still enjoy using the ST (whichever one I decide to use at a given moment) to this day. It's familiar, fun, and extremely reliable. It does any of the tasks that I require in a computer system; and it's ten years old! By today's standards, my systems should be in a museum somewhere! Sure, my systems aren't as fast as today's, but so what. Sure, PCs today visually more attractive with better graphics, but after awhile, who notices those things? But for me, and many people, a computer system is a tool in which to get things done. My livelihood doesn't depend on getting a project done a few hours or days faster. In fact, my life doesn't depend on anything that can be accomplished by using a computer. It's simply a tool in which I can do things which I enjoy; and couldn't do otherwise. It fits my needs well. Sure, it might be fun to have a Pentium machine with all the latest technology accompanying it. But you know what? All the glitz would wear off after awhile, either due to repetitiveness or something even newer. Eventually, a newer machine would become just a tool, again. Same cycle, different machine. What I do miss about staying with my machine of choice is much of the atmosphere that I could rely upon. The local dealer(s) that I could visit any day of the week and browse the shelves of endless software and talk with my fellow Atarians. The various local bulletin boards that were proud to state that they supported Atari computers. The banter on these systems was fun, and educational. The online services were deluged with literally hundreds of new messages daily. If you missed a day, either locally or on the services, you were buried in messages! The hundreds of new files to choose from and download from any given system. I used to spend hours accumulating these files for myself and my BBS users! The disks that I used to fill up in any given week! I could probably go through them today and delete 75% of the stuff that's sitting on them - I'd be in floppy disk heaven with hundreds of "new" disks to fill (and free up some much-needed hard drive space!). The developers whom I grew to know and rely on for updates and new programs. Atari developers were the finest people around. Nowhere have I experienced such camaraderie. AtariFests! These shows, themselves, are unique to Atari users. Nostalgia is fun. As with most things, things change over time. Technology is always moving forward; these days it seems to move faster than most things in life. Everything's changed for the Atari user of yesteryear, unfortunately (to some extent). The only thing that will remain a constant is the enjoyment that my Atari systems still provide. I seriously doubt that that will ever change, completely. Thanks for the opportunity to let me be in a different frame of mind for a change. For today, I can bask in the enjoyment of things Atari; tomorrow I'll hear about some of the new things my employees have learned about their new "toy" - something that I can relate to from my own first experiences. Until next time... ___________________________________________ Delphi's Atari Advantage! TOP TEN DOWNLOADS (3/15/95) (1) DL VIEWER V.1.10 *(6) WORLD CLOCK 1.0A *(2) HACE 9412 *(7) 3X CD-ROM ON AN ATARI (3) LYNX - WWW TEXT BROWSER *(8) PIANO MOD FILES + BONUS (4) HSMODA06 SERIAL PORT ACCEL *(9) MAGGIE V.13 *(5) ATARI E-MAIL ADDRESS LIST *(10) HACE 9501 * = New on list HONORARY TOP 10 The following on-line magazines are always top downloads, frequently out-performing every other file in the databases. STREPORT (Current issue: STREPORT 11.10) ATARI EXPLORER ONLINE (Current issue: AEO: VOLUME 4, ISSUE 3) Look for the above files in the RECENT ARRIVALS database. _____________________________________________ > Zero-X! STR MIDI InfoFile! - Digital Sound Processing Software """""""""""""""""""""""""" ____________________________________________________ -= Zero-X =- DIGITAL SOUND PROCESSING SOFTWARE for Atari computers ____________________________________________________ Who is Zero-X made for? Anyone who uses a sampler, sample-player or a hard disk recording system and has access to an Atari computer. What is Zero-X? Zero-X is a tool for helping you with the tedious and sometimes hopeless work of looping your sounds. Zero-X is a tool for editing your sampled sounds or BeatLoops. Zero-X is a tool for fast transfer of your samples, to and from your sampler/sample-player. Zero-X is a tool for conversion of audio files, to and from different file formats (programs). Zero-X is a product of lots of research. The development team consists not only of computer engineers but also of musicians & sound engineers. We started out talking to friends and colleagues (musicians and sound engineers) and quite soon realised that there were lots of people (including us) looking for a product like Zero-X. We use Zero-X ourselves professionally in our studio. We have been concentrating on usefulness, high quality result, speed and ease-of-use. And low price! Zero-X AutoSearch, a time saver! What took months using the best competitor's most powerful autoloop tools is done in a minute with Zero-X AutoSearch (and the result is usually even better). With Zero-X you will have time left to be creative. Hardware recommendations Zero-X can be run on "any "Atari computer, but to take full advantage of all the features in Zero-X a Falcon with at least 4 MB RAM is necessary. A hard disk is recommended but not required. Monitor: 640x400 mono or better. Falcon : Crystal clear 16 bit, 8 to 49 KHz, monitoring of your samples. Very fast DSP calculations. SCSI dump. TT : 8 bit monitor of your samples, SCSI dump. STE : 8 bit monitor of your samples. ST : no sound (as yet!) The Future of Zero-X Zero-X is a fast growing product. Even though we will be concentrating on getting as much out of Atari Falcon as possible, we will continue supporting the ST/E and TT. High priority are given to features such as supporting more Midi and SCSI dump protocols, fast time stretch/pitch shift etc. There will always be very generous upgrade offers. Features: ========= True AutoLoop (AutoSearch) The fastest and most powerful true autoloop (autosearch) on any Atari computer. Zero-X is able to find the most optimal loop positions in your sample, i.e. best fitting start and end, we call it AutoSearch. It can also, at the speed of light, return the best fitting loop start to a loop end defined by the user, i.e. the classic AutoLoop. All of this with a single mouse click! Loop prepare Powerful features for modifying your sounds for a better loop result Gate, change a fading part in the sample to equal volume. Visual Crossfade, makes a smooth fade between loop start and loop end. Edit features Very useful functions, such as Cut, Copy, Paste, Fade Out, Optimize volume, Silence, SmartCut, Digital NoiseGate, Mix etc BeatLoop Lots of functions for editing a drum loop. - AutoDrumLoop - Calculate BPM, - DrumSplit; split up your drum loop into individual drums and send them as individual drums to your sampler - Create a standard Midi file from your drum loop, so you can change the tempo in a sequencer program without the need of timestretch and exchange some drums etc. (something like Recycle on Mac and PC) Sample Conversion Convert files of any size to and from: - CuBase Audio (non compressed .AIF) - Avalon (Sound Designer 1 .SD) - PC/Windows (.WAV) - DAME (.TKE) - WinRec (.DVSM) - "Standard Atari" (.AVR) - Raw sample data (.RAW) - 8/16 bit, Stereo/Mono, Signed/Unsigned Sample Transfer With features such as batch dump/receive etc. - Standard Midi Sample Dump - Standard SCSI Sample Dump-SMDI - Manufacturer specific sample dump (Ensoniq etc) Free demo version! Distributors: UK : the Digital Village (Paul or Simon) US : Wizztronics (Steve Cohen) Germany : SoundPool (Thomas Baumgaertner) Distributed in Sweden by Copson Data, Linkvping. Ph & Fax +46-13-16 41 04, Fax +46-31-81 21 39. Internet email@example.com Please contact your local dealer or Copson Data for more information. USA, NY, Wizztronics, Steve Cohen Internet :firstname.lastname@example.org Fax & Phone :Int+1-516-473-2507 Germany, SoundPool, Thomas Baumgaertner Fax :Int+49-07046-90 215 Phone :Int+49-07046-90 315 UK, Digital Village, Paul or Simon Fax :Int+44-81-447 1129 _______________________________________________ > Tetrhex! STR InfoFile! - Tetris-like Games """""""""""""""""""""" ******************************** * * * TETRHEX 1.23 * * * * written by Vincent Lefevre * * * ******************************** TETRHEX is a shareware game, or rather a group of Tetris-like or Columns-like games, being played on a hexagonal board, with hexagonal cells. TETRHEX runs on the Atari Falcon 030 with every kind of color screen, but should be able to run on any Atari (or other TOS-based computer) having at least a 68030 and a Falcon compatible (i.e. interlaced planes) graphic mode 256 colors >= 640 * 480, possibly with a substitute operating system (TOS/GEM compatible). Main features: _ You can modify existing rule files and create your own rules in a TETRHEX-specific language. _ TETRHEX uses GEM functions, except for some displays. Therefore it is compatible with many system programs (in the AUTO folder): NVDI, SpeedoGDOS, Screen Blaster card, Outside, MiNT/MultiTOS, ... _ TETRHEX can display outline fonts if SpeedoGDOS or NVDI 3 is active. You can choose the fonts. TETRHEX automatically selects the most suitable font height, according to the font and the text to display. _ Many options; configuration on 2 levels as Unix-like options: permanent (in a file) and at the start. _ You can play on the whole screen or in a GEM window (AES 4.1 is supported: the window can be iconified). _ List of languages to use in order of preference, particularly useful because of the help in rule files. By default, the language of the system is preferably used. _ The hexagonal board has a variable size (4 different sizes). _ TETRHEX can save up to 255 scores for each rule and each size of the hexagonal board. _ You can give a group of re-locatable routines enabling TETRHEX to communicate with the outside. Possible applications (some routines don't exist yet): playing with the Joypad (instead of the keyboard) or even playing using your voice (thanks to the DSP), having .MOD modules played in background at given moments, putting images at the background, making the computer play, ... Vincent Lefevre e-mail: email@example.com _______________________________________ > STR NewsPlus """""""""""" -/- Prodigy Glitch Zaps E-mail -/- Nearly 5,000 electronic mail messages from the Internet to subscribers of the Prodigy online system have been lost because of a glitch in new Prodigy software, officials with the company say. Prodigy officials have told The Associated Press the trouble occurred during a two-hour period Thursday after the system installed new software for speeding up e-mail to and from the Internet. After the problem was discovered, it took about five hours to correct, AP says. "The lost messages were sent from 11:51 a.m. to 1:58 p.m. EST Thursday," says the wire service. "In addition, there were 473 messages sent to the wrong people. Some Prodigy customers received multiple copies of mis-delivered e-mail." Prodigy says it notified its customers of the problem and was also able to electronically contact senders of the misdirected messages but not the senders of the lost messages. Said Prodigy spokesman Brian Ek, "We sure don't feel good about it. We figure the best thing we can do is go out to our members and the electronic community and let people know what happened." -/- CompuServe to Buy Spry Inc. -/- Seattle-based Spry Inc., producer of the Internet in a Box software, is to be acquired by CompuServe Inc. Writing in The Wall Street Journal this morning, reporter Jared Sandberg says the deal calls for the exchange of about $100 million in stock and cash, "believed to be the largest Internet-related acquisition." Spry's software offers a suite of Internet-related utilities, including a web browser called "Air Mosaic" that enables users to enter and browse through the multimedia portion of the Internet known as the World Wide Web. CompuServe and Spry are "just a really nice fit," CompuServe President/CEO Maury Cox told the Journal. Cox noted the two already had signed an agreement in October to help CompuServe's commercial customers, such as Visa International Inc. and Federal Express Corp., gain access to the Internet. Noting Internet software, access and consulting expertise, is expected to become a $4 billion industry in two years, Cox added, "It just seemed if we were together we could move faster." -/- Internet Writer Released on Bond -/- A college student accused of threatening a classmate by writing a rape-torture fantasy on the Internet has been freed on $10,000 personal bond pending his trial April 3. In Detroit yesterday Jake Baker, 20, was released into the custody of his mother and allowed to return with her to the family's Boardman, Ohio, home. In making the order, U.S. District Judge Avern Cohen also ordered Baker to stay off the Internet, United Press International reports. Baker had been jailed without bond at a federal prison in Milan since his arrest last month. Judge Cohen said psychiatric exams he ordered this week indicated the suspended University of Michigan sophomore was neither psychotic nor an imminent threat to society. Baker was indicted last month by a federal grand jury for allegedly using the global computer network to threaten a woman he met in a Japanese class at the University of Michigan. Prosecutors allege Baker broke the law by naming the woman in his graphic tales of death and sexual torture. UPI quotes Baker as contending he did nothing wrong, that his writings were fiction, but also said he apologized after leaving the courtroom yesterday. Said Baker, "I'm sorry to even have used a real person's name. It's not going to happen again." -/- Second Man Named in Internet Case -/- A five-count superseding indictment has been issued against a college student accused using Internet to post threats against a female classmate. And, for the first time, another man has been indicted for allegedly joining an e-mail exchange involving threats. In Detroit, United Press International says the latest indictments supersede the original charges against 20- year-old Jake Baker, a Boardman, Ohio, student indicted last month on allegations he transmitted threats against an Ann Arbor woman he met in a University of Michigan class. The new indictment also adds Arthur Gonda of the Toronto area to a case, according to U.S. Attorney Saul Green. "Gonda's whereabouts, age and information about his possible arrest were unavailable," UPI said. As reported earlier, the case centers on text posted on the Internet in the form of stories about rape, torture and murder. Notes UPI, "Baker has admitted he wrote at least one rape-torture fantasy and posted it on the Internet, using the computer access he received as a UM sophomore. After he was freed on a personal bond last week after a month in jail, Baker apologized for using the name of a student as the victim of the fantasy. But his attorney said he'll argue Internet stories are protected by the right to free speech." Baker has been released into the custody of his mother in Ohio. A judge also ordered him to stay off the Internet. Originally, Baker's trial was to begin April 3, but it's now unclear whether the latest indictments will change the trial date. Green allege Baker and Gonda broke the federal law against transmitting threats across state or international borders. The new indictments charge Baker wrote and transmitted "numerous stories and e-mail messages over the Internet" between September and December 1994. Details of the messages were included in the indictments but were not reported by UPI. -/- Film Rights to Mitnick Book Sold -/- Worldwide film rights to a book about how the FBI caught fugitive computerist Kevin Mitnick last month in Raleigh, North Carolina, have been acquired by Miramax Films. The Associated Press quotes a story in the Hollywood Reporter as saying Miramax paid an undisclosed amount for rights to the book "Catching Kevin: The Pursuit and Capture of America's Most Wanted Computer Criminal," by consultant Tsutomu Shimomura and New York Times reporter John Markoff. AP says the book will be published by Disney-owned Hyperion, a sister company of Miramax. As reported earlier, Shimomura helped track down Mitnick who was indicted last week on 23 counts of computer access fraud. -/- BBS Sysop Sentenced in Privacy Case -/- The operator of the Massachusetts-based Davey Jones Locker bulletin board system, who pleaded guilty in December to violating copyright protections of commercial software, has been sentenced to 24 months probation with six months home confinement. Richard D. Kenadek also will be monitored by use of an electronic bracelet for the first three months and will forfeit all computer equipment related to the operation of the BBS. The 43-year-old Kenadek of Millbury, Massachusetts, had faced up to one year in prison and a fine of $100,000. The Software Publishers Association's four-month investigation of the BBS precipitated an FBI investigation that concluded with Kenadek's indictment last August. In a statement from Washington, D.C., Sandra A. Sellers, the SPA director of litigation, said this was "the first time the criminal statute under the copyright law has been used to prosecute a bulletin board operator," adding, "This is a crucial turning point on the road to eliminating piracy among bulletin board operators." She said Kenadek's prosecution "sends a message to bulletin board operators that both civil and criminal remedies will be vigorously pursued for the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted software." At the time of the FBI raid, more than 200 commercial copyrighted programs were available to subscribers for downloading from a special section of the Davey Jones Locker BBS. The SPA also filed a civil suit against Kenadek, which was settled in conjunction with Kenadek's guilty plea. Settlement terms include a provision prohibiting him from operating or assisting in any BBS for one year. _______________________________________ JAGUAR SECTION ============== More Checkered Flag! CatNips! Atari 4th Quarter Finance Report! Mortal Kombat III! Defender 2000! Minter News! And much more! > From the Editor's Controller - Playin' it like it is! """""""""""""""""""""""""""" I apologize for my negligence in last week's issue; I had announced the week earlier that we were going to reveal our "Name the First 20 Jaguar Titles" contest winners last week - I forgot to include that information. If you remember, we started the contest sometime before Christmas. At the time, we felt that 20 games would be a reasonable number of games available and that this contest would run a month or two and we'd have plenty of titles to make things interesting for this contest. Well, as we all know, the numbers of games didn't quite make it out in time. We decided to extend the contest in the hopes that we'd have 20 titles out without the need to prolong the contest. It didn't happen, at the time. So, we decided that after about 15 titles were out, we'd stop at 17 (knowing that two more games were imminent at the time!). We had a number of entries that were close to being correct; and couple that were "perfect scores" to that point. Anyway, with the excuses out of the way, let's get to the winners! We had two entries that had the first 17 Jaguar game releases correct! Both winning entries were received within four days of each other, so the first winning entry received will be awarded the first prize; the second getting second prize - real scientific! The winners: 1st prize - Karen Anderson and Andre Pomerleau, a team effort from SUNY (State University of New York) Prizes include the Jaguar dealer banner and a Jaguar teeshirt. 2nd prize - Jason Wheatly, a 17-year old high school student from Los Angeles. Prizes include a Jaguar teeshirt and the "Jag Rules" rubber stamp. Both winners will also receive an AvP and Iron Soldier poster. Congratulations to our winners!! And thanks to the many who sent in entries. Some of your guesses were extremely interesting! There were some titles that were included that haven't even been mentioned as possible games yet! We're looking forward to putting together another contest, so look for it in the near future. By the way, we've decided not to print the winning entries a we're considering a similar contest, but with many more titles to put in order by release. We don't want to make a future contest too easy for you all! There have been a few games released for the Jaguar: Troy Aikman Football, Syndicate, and Theme Park. Other than the football game, these releases haven't been getting the usual online activity as their predecessors have received. Perhaps these games haven't had too much activity with regard to distribution yet. Hopefully, we'll hear a lot more news about these games soon. And, we hope to have reviews of them, and upcoming games, soon! With March, and the first quarter of 1995 almost at a close, it appears that the Jaguar CD-player isn't going to make it out on time. Although the player is ready, it appears that the games just aren't ready yet. If you recall, Atari stated some time ago that the CD- player wasn't going to be released until there were six CD titles available. Current estimates for the release is now April or May. As we learn more specific details, we'll bring them your way. Although the Sega settlement makes it look much better, Atari's financial report for their 4th quarter report for 1994 was released earlier in the week; and it's improving. Imagine what might have happened had Atari had an impressive Christmas season this past year! Details of this report can be found later in this issue. We've got a lot of ground to cover this week, so let's get to the rest of this week's issue. We hope you find it interesting! Until next time... _______________________________________ > Jaguar Catalog STR InfoFile - What's currently available, what's """"""""""""""""""""""""""" coming out. Current Available Titles ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ CAT # TITLE MSRP DEVELOPER/PUBLISHER J9000 Cybermorph $59.99 Atari Corp. J9006 Evolution:Dino Dudes $49.99 Atari Corp. J9005 Raiden $49.99 FABTEK, Inc/Atari Corp. J9001 Trevor McFur/ Crescent Galaxy $49.99 Atari Corp. J9010 Tempest 2000 $59.95 Llamasoft/Atari Corp. J9028 Wolfenstein 3D $69.95 id/Atari Corp. JA100 Brutal Sports FtBall $69.95 Telegames J9008 Alien vs. Predator $69.99 Rebellion/Atari Corp. J9029 Doom $69.99 id/Atari Corp. J9036 Dragon: Bruce Lee $59.99 Atari Corp. J9003 Club Drive $59.99 Atari Corp. J9007 Checkered Flag $69.99 Atari Corp. J9012 Kasumi Ninja $69.99 Atari Corp. J9042 Zool 2 $59.99 Atari Corp J9020 Bubsy $49.99 Atari Corp J9026 Iron Soldier $59.99 Atari Corp J9060 Val D'Isere Skiing $59.99 Atari Corp. Cannon Fodder Virgin Syndicate Ocean Troy Aikman Ftball $69.99 Williams Theme Park Ocean Available Soon ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ CAT # TITLE MSRP DEVELOPER/PUBLISHER CatBox $69.95 ICD Hover Strike $59.99 Atari Jaguar CD-ROM $149.99 Atari Hardware and Peripherals ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ CAT # TITLE MSRP MANUFACTURER J8001 Jaguar (complete) $189.99 Atari Corp. J8001 Jaguar (no cart) $159.99 Atari Corp. J8904 Composite Cable $19.95 J8901 Controller/Joypad $24.95 Atari Corp. J8905 S-Video Cable $19.95 > Industry News STR Game Console NewsFile - The Latest Gaming News! """"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" 13-MAR-1995 09:39 ATARI CORPORATION ANNOUNCES RESULTS FOR THE YEAR AND FOURTH QUARTER 1994 SUNNYVALE, Calif., March 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Atari Corporation (AMEX: ATC) reported today its results for the year and fourth quarter ended December 31, 1994. For the year ended 1994, NET SALES were $38.4 million as compared to $28.8 million for the year ended 1993, an increase of 33%. Increased sales were a result of the sales of Jaguar, the Company's 64-bit multi-media interactive entertainment system and related software. Primarily as a result of settlements of patent litigations, the Company reported NET INCOME for the year 1994 of $9.4 million as compared to a NET LOSS for 1993 of $48.9 million. For the fourth quarter 1994, NET SALES were $14.9 million as compared to $8.5 million for 1993, a 75% increase. Primarily due to significant marketing expenses of $8.0 million and an inventory valuation adjustment of $3.6 million, the Company incurred an operating loss of $12.6 million in 1994 as compared to $21.9 million operating loss for the fourth quarter of 1993. As a result of the Company's ongoing research and development, the wholesale price of Jaguar was reduced in the first quarter of 1995 to allow retailers to sell Jaguar at a price of $159.99. Accordingly, the Company has adjusted the value of its existing inventory and anticipated purchases through the period until cost reductions become effective. During the fourth quarter of 1994, the Company closed its transactions with Sega Enterprises Ltd. which resulted in an income item of $29.8 million after contingent legal expenses and the sale of approximately 4.7 million shares of the Company stock for $40.0 million. As of December 31, 1994, the Company had $81.0 million in cash and marketable securities and shareholders' equity of $67.1 million. As a result of the items previously discussed, the Company reported for the fourth quarter of 1994, NET INCOME of $17.6 million as compared to a NET LOSS of $22.6 million for 1993. Commenting, Sam Tramiel, Atari Corp. president, said, "We are very pleased to offer Jaguar for $159.99, thereby making new 64-bit technology competitively priced against older 16-bit systems. Although we are disappointed that our expectations for Jaguar were not met in the fourth quarter due to delayed game software, we believe we have taken corrective actions to ensure an ongoing stream of software through 1995 and beyond. Today, we have announced a publishing arrangement with Williams Entertainment for 'Mortal Kombat III' and will be announcing another significant arrangement with a major software publisher shortly. Those titles, along with some of Jaguar's current hit titles such as 'Tempest 2000,' 'Alien vs. Predator,' 'Doom and Val d'Isere Skiing' will be added to the list of titles that will be available for Jaguar." ATARI CORPORATION Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations (in thousands, except per share) Three Months Ended Twelve Months Ended Dec 31, Dec 31, Dec 31, Dec 31, 1994 1993 1994 1993 Net Sales $14,921 $8,525 $38,444 $28,805 Operating Income (loss) (12,595) (21,861) (24,047) (47,499) Exchange Gain (loss) (5) (709) 1,184 (2,234) Other Income (Expense) Net 77 288 484 854 Settlement of Patent Litigation 29,812 -- 32,062 -- Interest (Expense) Net of Interest Income 316 (291) (289) (251) Income (Loss) Before Income Taxes 17,605 (22,573) 9,394 (49,130) Credit for Income Taxes(a) -- -- -- (264) Net Income (loss) $17,605 $(22,573) $9,394 $(48,866) Earnings Per Common and Equivalent Share: Net Income (loss) $0.30 $(0.39) $0.16 $(0.85) Weighted Average number of shares used in computation 59,460 57,177 58,962 57,148 (a) No income tax expense as a result of the utilization of the Company's Net Operating Loss Carry forward and Deferred Tax Assets. -0- 3/13/95 /CONTACT: August J. Liguori, 408-745-2069, or Sam Tramiel, 408-745-8824, both of Atari/ (ATC) CO: Atari Corp. ST: California IN: CPR SU: ERN -/- Atari Stock Falls On Disappointing Results -/- SUNNYVALE, Calif. (Reuter) - Atari Corp., which makes personal computers and video game systems, reported an operating loss in the fourth quarter Monday, sparking a drop in its stock. The stock fell 43.75 cents or 11 percent lower at $3.4375 on the American Stock Exchange. The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company said it had an operating loss of $12.6 million in the quarter ended Dec. 31, after it spent $8 million in marketing costs and adjusted the value of its inventory by $3.6 million. This compared with a $21.9 million operating loss in the year-ago period. Sales rose 75 percent to $14.9 million from $8.5 million. After one-time gains, Atari reported net profits of $17.6 million for the quarter, compared with a net loss of $22.6 million in the year-ago period. Reuter/Variety ___________________________________________ CONTACT: Ron Beltramo Terry King Atari Corporation Williams Entertainment Inc 408/745-8852 903/874-2683 For Immediate Release "MORTAL KOMBAT III" WILL BE AVAILABLE ON THE ATARI JAGUAR SUNNYVALE, Calif., March 13 - Atari Corp. and Williams Entertainment Inc. are pleased to announce that Atari will be publishing "Mortal Kombat III" for the Atari Jaguar 64-bit multimedia system. "Mortal Kombat" is one of the most frequently requested video game titles from Jaguar enthusiasts. "Letters have been pouring in daily telling us that gamers want `Mortal Kombat' for the Atari Jaguar," indicated Sam Tramiel, president of Atari Corp. "We at Atari are dedicated to the mission of giving the enthusiastic Jaguar game players exactly what they are looking for and `Mortal Kombat III' will give them the latest version of the `Mortal Kombat' series of arcade hits." "Mortal Kombat III" is the third in a series of outstanding coin-op games incorporating true-to-life graphic images into a challenging fighting experience. Williams Entertainment Inc. is the home video subsidiary of WMS Industries Inc., the company that created "Mortal Kombat" and "NBA Jam" for the arcades. "Mortal Kombat III" for the Atari Jaguar will feature true-color graphics and all the sounds and action of the arcade version of "Mortal Kombat III." Planned release will be within the second quarter of 1996. Williams Entertainment already has other popular video game titles scheduled for release on the Jaguar platform. "Troy Aikman Football" is currently available to be followed up shortly by "Double Dragon V." Electronic Gaming Monthly says of "Troy Aikman Football," "... the Jaguar version is the best yet." Saturday morning cartoon fans will recognize the fighting lineup in "Double Dragon V" with eye-popping animated action. Other software hits being developed in partnership between Williams Entertainment and Atari Corp. include new adaptations of classic games such as "Joust" and "Defender." "Defender 2000" is being developed with three distinct play modes (the classic favorite, "Defender Plus," and "Defender 2000") for the Jaguar by Jeff Minter of "Tempest 2000" fame. According to Bill Rehbock Atari's VP of Software Business Development, "`Dactyl Joust' will bring the classic game alive as a first person perspective, fully texture-mapped Joust in a realistic, three dimensional environment." Atari will market these games for the 64-bit Jaguar system while Williams Entertainment will license and market them for high performance PCs. These distinct agreements between Atari Corp. and Williams Entertainment are indicative of the strong relationship these two companies have established. Williams Entertainment is one of the first third-party licensees to begin working with Atari on the Jaguar 64-bit platform and remains a strong supporter of the system with top software titles. Atari Corp. markets interactive multimedia entertainment systems, including Jaguar, the world's first and only 64-bit system and the only video game system manufactured in the United States. Atari is headquartered at 1196 Borregas Ave., Sunnyvale, CA 94089. ### Jaguar is a trademark of Atari Corp. Atari is a registered trademark of Atari Corp. Other products named may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their owning companies. > Jaguar Game Title STR Review - "Checkered Flag" """""""""""""""""""""""""""" - Available Now - Review By: Dominick J. Fontana (CIS: 74766,2154) Date of Review: 3/12/95 Basic Information: Difficulty Level: Very Difficult Type of Game: Car Racing Format: Cartridge Developed by: Rebellion Published by: Atari Corp. List Price: Originally $49.99 (Now it can be found on sale for $29.99.) Opening Comments: I wanted to like Checkered Flag (CF), but I didn't. The main reason was that it was much too difficult to use the joypad to steer the car. How To Play: CF is a one-player car racing game. The object is to race your car around a track for a certain number of laps in the shortest possible time, in order to beat your computer opponents. There are nine options that you may select before playing. The options are as follows: Color - You may select the color of your car. Weather - You may select from Sun, Rain, or Fog. Airfoil - You may select Low or High. This affects the drag on your car and therefore how the car handles. It also affects the speed of your car. A Low Airfoil allows you to achieve higher speeds, at the expense of car handling. The car is more difficult to control with this setting. It is better used on straight tracks. A High Airfoil makes the car easier to control, but it slows you down. It is better used on curvy tracks. Tires - You may select Dry or Wet. Generally, you may want to use Dry tires for Sunny weather and Wet tires for Rain or Fog, although some experimentation is in order. Gearing - You may select Auto5 or Man6. Auto5 is an automatic transmission with 5 gears. The game shifts gears for you automatically when you attain the proper speed. Man6 is a manual transmission with 6 gears. You must change gears yourself with the joypad. It is more difficult to control, but your car can go faster. Drones - You may select from 1 to 5. This represents the number of cars you will be racing against. Race - You may select from Single Race, Free Practice, or Tournament. In a Single Race, you have one race and then the game is over. It is useful to practice racing against the competition on the different tracks before you enter a Tournament. Free Practice allows you to race on a single track without any competition. This mode is useful to learn how to control your car on the different tracks. Tournament engages you in a full racing season that consists of racing against 5 computer opponents on all 10 available tracks. Laps - You may select from 1 to 99 laps. This determines the length of the race. Track - You may select from one of ten tracks, except in Tournament Mode, where you race on all ten tracks. After selecting options, you may go to the Configure Screen. This allows you to change the Controller Configuration, change the Track Map, and change the Tachometer Display. For the controller, you can change the functions of the A, B, and C buttons. For the Track Map, you can turn it off, have it on but static, or have it on and spinning. Spinning means that the map changes directions as your car changes directions. The Tachometer display can be turned on or off. You can also adjust the music volume and the sound effects volume. These volume settings, plus the best lap time, your car color and transmission type, selected track, number of laps, configuration options, and the top five Tournament results are saved to cartridge. The play screen displays your car and the other cars on the track, together with the speed of your car, the gear you are in, the tachometer, your position, best lap time, current lap time, the track map (an overview of the track with the position of all cars and with your car circled), and the lap counter. On the controller, by default the A button is used to accelerate, the B button is used to brake, and the C button is for cruise control, while it is held down. Keys 1 to 6 on the keypad allow 6 different views of your car. Key 0 toggles the music on and off, while * and # reset the game. Joypad left and right steer your car in the respective directions, while joypad up and down shift gears up and down when in manual transmission mode. Option toggles between the Options and Configure Screens and Pause is used to pause/un-pause the game and to set volume levels. There is no keypad overlay for the game. The Game Manual is adequate. Opinion: I was disappointed with this game. The biggest problem is that I found it very, very difficult to steer the car with any degree of accuracy using the joypad. By its nature, the joypad is not a good controller choice for a driving game. But in this game, the steering was programmed to be much tougher than it should be when using the joypad. The steering was awkward and non-intuitive and detracted tremendously from my enjoyment of the game. No matter how hard I tried or how many hours that I practiced, I just couldn't get the hang of the steering controls. This ultimately affected my opinion of the entire game. I have played other driving games with a joypad and the steering was better than it is in this game. As such, I would say that it is the fault of the programmers for making the steering controls so unwieldy. Because of the problematic steering, I would often crash and this became very frustrating very quickly. As a result of this major flaw, the game simply wasn't much fun for me to play. It's a shame because if the steering had been implemented properly, the game would have had a lot more playability. I enjoyed Pole Position on the old Atari 5200 much better than CF, and that game is about 13 years old. I also didn't like the graphics. They were polygon rendered and looked blocky. In particular, the tires on the cars looked funny and didn't convey the feeling of movement. The scenery was also unspectacular. The tracks were varied in their layouts, but there was still a similar look from track to track. The grandstands were dull and uninspiring. It did not create the impression that there were actually fans in the stands rooting you on. There are pit-stops, but they are just for effect. You can't use them and there is no purpose to them other than as scenery. One nice touch is the inclusion of yellow arrows on the tracks to warn you of upcoming turns. You have 6 different views of your car. One view places you in the car where you can see your driver and how he turns the steering wheel and shifts gears. In this view, you can see your car's two rearview mirrors. I expected this to add a nice touch to the game, since you could monitor the car's approaching you from behind. However, in practice, the mirrors were not really useful, since if and when cars passed you, they passed you in a flash. Another view is slightly behind your car at ground level. Two other views place you slightly behind your car and give aerial views at two different low levels of elevation. The final two views place you further behind your car and give aerial views at two different high levels of elevation. There is music during the game, that can be toggled off. I enjoyed the music and kept it on. The music was neither spectacular, nor offensive. I found that it kept my adrenaline pumped up during the races and enhanced my enjoyment of the game. The sound effects were generally good. I particularly liked the screeches that the car made, and it made them in the right places, too. If you gunned the accelerator or made a turn too fast, the car would screech. However, I was a bit disappointed with the engine sounds. It sounded more like a tank than a racing car. I would have also liked audience cheers when you passed the stands, but all in all, the sound effects were good and enhanced the gameplay. There is no qualifying lap before each race in order to determine your pole position. However, in Tournament Mode, your starting position is based upon the results of the previous race. At the start of each race you cannot see the other cars around you. You feel as if you are racing in isolation. There is a digitized male voice that says, "Gentleman, start your engines," and then lights flash. When the green light flashes, the race begins. The endings of the races are also a disappointment. There is no flag, bell, or any other indication when you are on the last lap (other than the lap counter). There is also no checkered flag when you cross the finish line, which is a bit odd, considering the name of the game. The ending is almost anticlimactic. You are never really sure where the finish line is. You just cross the line as you do for all the other laps, and then your car is automatically slowed down and stopped by the game before you go to the Results Screen. If you are behind the leaders, then when they finish the race, the game automatically ends. You are not permitted to finish the race yourself. You are then taken to the Results Screen, which shows pictures of all the cars, in what place all the cars finished, the total time to finish the race, together with the best lap time and best lap speed for each of the cars. This screen was also poorly implemented. There is absolutely no indication as to which is your car. You have to remember what color you picked for your car and then look for that color on the Results Screen. It seems it would have been a simple matter to at least have an arrow pointing to your car on the Results Screen. The actual races themselves would have been fun, if the steering had not been so difficult. Basically, you press the A button to accelerate. When you release the button, your car will start to slow down. If you want to keep your current speed, you press Button C to engage cruise control, which functions only if you continue to keep the button pressed. You use the B button to brake. While cruise control sounded like a good idea, in practice, I wasn't that fond of using it. If I were able to maintain my speed without crashing so much, it might have been more useful. But with all of my crashes, I found it was a bit of a nuisance to have to repeatedly accelerate and then use cruise control to maintain my speed, and then release cruise or use the brake to make turns, and then accelerate again to get back up to speed, use cruise again, and then crash, and have to start the process all over again. All in all, controlling your speed in the game wasn't that bad, but I never really felt that I mastered the technique. On the other hand, steering your car was a total nightmare. I practiced for days on end, but I could still never master the technique. Ultimately, the horrendous steering control is Checkered Flag's downfall. In certain instances, when I was able to maintain a good speed without crashing, the game was exhilarating. The movement of the car was exciting and I derived tremendous enjoyment from speeding around the track, especially when I was able to pass the other cars. There was no slowdown, even with a number of cars on the screen at the same time. The game did capture the thrill of driving and was a lot of fun, whenever I was able to drive for a period of time without crashing. But because of the steering, I was not able to drive for long, without crashing. As a matter of fact, after all the hours that I played the game, I was rarely able to complete even one lap without crashing, if I used a speed of 90 mph or higher. And even if you could maintain that speed without crashing, you would still come in last. So you needed to maintain an average speed of well over 100 mph in order to be among the leaders, and at that speed, I simply could not control the car for very long, without crashing. And this was in Auto5 Mode, where you don't have to shift gears yourself. In Man6 Mode you also have to use the joypad to shift gears. So I am a bit annoyed at the programmers for denying me the pleasure of playing what could have been a fun game, because they made the steering too difficult. Another problem with the game was the cars that you raced against. You really could never find yourself neck-and-neck with another car, zooming down the track. If you crashed, the other cars would pass you in a flash. If you caught up to another car, you could usually pass it right away. So normally, you felt as if you were racing by yourself, since you didn't see your opponents that often. Also, many times the other cars would bump you from behind, forcing a crash. Or if you tried to pass a car, the car would get in front of you, forcing an accident. The game seemed to be a matter of catching up to the pack, bumping a few cars to make them crash, and then passing them. If you were able to maintain your speed, then fine. But the moment you crashed, the other cars would zip by you in a second. You then had to try to catch the pack again. After awhile, I felt it was better to be the pursuer, rather than the pursued. If I took the lead at the beginning of the race, it seemed as if the pack would stay right behind me waiting for me to crash. Yet it seemed that none of the other cars crashed while they were pursuing me. It was tough to keep up this pace for the entire race. But it seemed that when I fell behind the pack, they went slower, giving me some time to catch them. So I would generally try to stay right behind the pack for the entire race and then try to pass them on the last lap. I was never able to win even one race in all the time that I played, and I came in second only once. The rest of the time, I placed third, fourth, or fifth, and many times, sixth. The bottom line is that the race didn't seem realistic to me. And if you crashed 3 or 4 times at the beginning of the race, which I often did, it was virtually impossible to ever catch the pack. That's why the game was no fun for me. I found myself resetting the game, time after time, after I had crashed a lot on the first lap. And to make matters worse, one crash seemed to cause another crash, which caused another crash, etc. It's one thing to crash, when you miss a turn. But after the crash, I wanted to recover as soon as possible. The game made that difficult to do, especially in tunnels or where there were walls involved. Whenever I hit a wall and crashed, I just couldn't seem to straighten out right away to get back on track. I would sometimes crash into the wall 3, 4, or 5 more times before I could straighten the car out and get back in the race. This was very frustrating for me and took away from my enjoyment of the game. If you are able to master the steering controls, the game can be very enjoyable, and would be well worth its new discounted price. I have heard of some people who have mastered the controls and who have enjoyed the game very much. Despite the game's other flaws, if you can steer the car at top speeds for extended periods of time, I think you will have a lot of fun with this game. I was not able to, and therefore found the game a disappointment and not much fun to play. Closing Comments: The game would have, could have, and should have been fun, if not for the very difficult steering controls. To me, this was a major design flaw in the game. The steering and control of the car should have been easier. You can't enjoy the game, if you can't play it. Ratings (based on 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest): Graphics: 6.5 Sound FX/Music: 7.0 Control: 3.0 Game Manual: 7.0 Entertainment: 5.5 Overall Rating: 6.0 Quick Ratings Comments: Graphics: I don't like polygon graphics. Sound FX/Music: Decent music and good sound effects, but the engine sounds could have been better. Control: Horrendous. The car was too hard to steer. The steering controls were the major impediment to my enjoyment of the game. I've played for countless hours and I still don't have the steering down pat, although I have improved. Even if I am able to eventually master the steering and have fun with the game, it shouldn't take so much time before you are able to enjoy a game. Game Manual: Okay, but I don't like the new manuals that are written in three different languages. I also thought that the Steering and Wheel Memory sections of the Maneuvering chapter could have been elaborated on and made much clearer. Entertainment Value: Very low entertainment value because of the problematic steering controls. You can't race for very long without crashing (at least, I wasn't able to). It's tough to be competitive and that detracts from the game's entertainment value. Reviewer's Overall Rating: I gave it a just passing mark of 6, primarily due to the steering controls. I also didn't like the polygon graphics. Despite a few other minor complaints, if the car were easier to control and steer, I probably would have given the game about 7.5 or 8. Summary: At its original price of $49.99, I would have said to stay away from this game because the car is very difficult to steer and control. You will crash an awful lot at first and that makes the game tedious to play. However, at the discounted price of $29.99, and if you have the patience and time it takes to master the steering controls, you might want to give Checkered Flag a try. _____________________________________ > Jaguar Online STR InfoFile Online Users Growl & Purr! """""""""""""""""""""""""" THE UNOFFICIAL |\ | \ _____________________________________ | \ | | \ ___ __ ___ | ___ _ ____| | / __ |_ __ |\ | __| __ |_| / __ __ __ |__/ ___ | ___ | \| |__| ___ | \ / | | | | | | | |__| |__| |__| - F A Q - |_________________ /_\ ========== ____/ > > > /_\ /_\ \ " _____ _____ _____ __ " | O O | _____ | O O | __ | O O | |::| " | O O | | O O | __ | O O | |::| | O O | |::| X | O O | | O O | |::|| O O | __|::|___| O O |__|::|____"__X___| O O |_| O O |__|::|| O O | Maintained by JAM \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\ This FAQ is in no way connected to Atari Corp. All information is tentative to final release. Certain features/elements may not be included in the final version. This game is being developed by Jeff Minter's muse, and therefore anything can change without notice on a whim. No portion of this document can be reproduced with the intent for profit. Notification of reproduction would be nice! :) Send comments/contributions to: MARSTELLER@wcdc03.pgh.wec.com Last update: 3/7/95 ################################################################ - WHAT IS DEFENDER 2000? Defender 2000 is based upon the original arcade game manufactured by Williams in the early eighties with a 90's spin. It is being programmed by Llamasoft, namely Jeff Minter. It will offer fast, smooth graphics while retaining excellent playability. Jeff's personal goal for the game: "To make your thumbs bleed!" ################################################################ - WHAT IS THE PLOT? As society evolved, our natural resources became depleted. We searched for other ways to supplement these resources. Today, teams of Miners excavate a nearby Asteroid Belt for its life- supplying minerals. As a member of an elite System Defense Team, it is your job to ensure the safety of the Asteroids and the workers that live on them. But all is not roses. The hostile Alpha Proximian Empire has failed at an invasion of our planet. With their failure, they have issued an attack on the Asteroid Mining Belt. The Alpha Proximian Empire knows that if they can destroy our resources, we will be helpless - and they will rule. The invasion fleet has orders to abduct the Humanoids working in the belt. Knowing that their life is doomed, the Humanoids will kill them selves upon leaving the Asteroid's atmosphere. In this situation, the 'energy' of the Humanoid will be absorbed into the Lander's ship and turn it into a Mutant. This is were you come in, with your attack ship AKA "Threshold", the salvation of the planet relies in your many years of training. Kill all the aliens before the Humanoids are sacrificed or the Asteroid will be destroyed along with the place that you call "Home". ################################################################ - WHO ARE THE *KNOWN* PLAYERS? YOU: The Threshold 2000 (Attack Ship) FEATURES: Sub-light engines, hyper-reverse, hyperspace. WEAPONS: Lazer torpedo gun unlimited ammo (feeds off engines). Smart bombs, Limited. Llightning Llaser (Classified, but kicks butt). A.I. Droid, Extra set of eyes and lazers that thinks for itself. THEM: Landers- Capture Humanoids and kill them. Mutants- Hyper fast kamikaze killer. Bombers- Plant stationary charges. Baiters- Very fast with very accurate aim. Pods- Not hostile until engaged. Swarmers- Small, mean enemies (formerly Pods). ################################################################ - WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT GAMES IN D2K? Defender 2000 is a combination of three games: 1. Defender Classic 2. Defender Plus 3. Defender 2000 DEFENDER CLASSIC: The name says it all. A carbon copy of the original. This version will contain sampled sound effects from the original arcade game. DEFENDER PLUS: Defender Plus retains the same format as the classic With a few twists. Expect to see more detailed animations of the game characters, new weapons, and most of the features of Defender's sequel - Stargate! There will also be a new control method. A new routine for the game's explosions will cause the average player to enter a hypnotic state and worship llamas. The A.I. Droid from T2K will make a return appearance with a larger dose of intelligence. These Droids, I say Droids because you can accumulate two, will toast nearby enemies as well as rescue falling humanoids. DEFENDER 2000: Anything Goes! Look for lots of new meanies and mega weapons. Go Vertical, scroll that is. 2000 will offer horizontal and vertical movement of your Defender allowing for some big guys to fill the screen. Beautiful, detailed backgrounds will offset the nasty bad guys. Just for variety each level will have multiple and different themes. ################################################################ - WHAT KIND OF MUSIC WILL THE GAME HAVE? YES! The score for D2K will be performed by the same musicians (Imagitec) that created the rippin tunes from T2K. The musicians should have at least twice the MEG to work with (the project is leaning toward the CD media). A feature call "Q Sound" will be utilized in the game. "Q Sound" is a recording process which produces three dimensional sound from conventional stereo speakers. A music feature that was absent from T2K, a sound check, may be available in the finished version of D2K. Expect to hear some sweet samples in the soundtrack. And don't be surprised to hear a beastie bleating or mooing in there somewhere! I wonder who thought of that? :) ################################################################ - HOW MANY PLAYERS? Right now the main focus is on a one player game. But there are a few maybes: Two players with player #2 controlling the A.I. Droid Two players with a split screen for the 2K version. JagNET and Modem capabilities not yet decided. * Remember that these are NOT definite! ################################################################ - HOW MANY LEVELS? Lots! Expect it to surpass T2K by containing 100 or more levels! ################################################################ - WHAT IS THE GAME CONTROL LIKE? In Classic there are two modes: 1. Standard: up/down/left/right on the joypad, no Thrust button 2. Arcade: a configurable pad with Thrust/Reverse buttons In Plus/2K contains Standard controls with the additions: Holding the fire button will produce continuous rapid fire. While firing use left/right, and you can accelerate in either direction while holding the ship orientation constant. This will allow you to shoot at an enemy while retreating from it. Button C: Smart Bomb Button B: Fire Button A: Llightning Llaser/Tractorbeam Keypad keys 3,6,9,#: Hyperspace ################################################################ - WILL THERE BE ANY EASTER EGGS? Yes. Jeff is planning to have a lot. The more there are, the more people will talk about the game. Some of the EEs being considered: Turn all the humanoids into llamas. Turn you ship into Flossie the Prettiest Sheep in the World. Some hidden Llamasoft classic games. ################################################################ - WHAT OTHER FEATURES WILL THE GAME CONTAIN? Bonus Rounds! D2K will contain transitional bonus rounds similar to T2K. Expect them to be based upon the same mind altering 1st perspective rounds in T2K. Game AI. One of the major complaints of the original Defender game was the difficulty of learning how to play the game. The learning cure has been flattened to allow 'Greenhorns' to become addicted to the game instead of becoming frustrated and tossing the cart. Expert players need not fret, for the higher levels are challenging even to the gamers with three eyes. This way everyone will enjoy the game. If the game is pressed to a CD. There may even be some Defender history worked into the game. The possibility of an interview with Eugene Jarvis the creator of Defender, Stargate and Robotron has been discussed. 60Hz, 60Hz, 60Hz! This game is going to be FAST! ################################################################ - RUMORS - There may be an occasional 'Offender' wave where you get to commit alien genocide. ################################################################ - OTHER D2K SOURCES - HTTP sites: The Jaguar Homepage http://www.bucknell.edu/~svensson/ - contains general game information Yak's Zoo http://hyrax.med.uth.tmc.edu/misc/zoo/zoo.htm - Get it from the goat's mouth ################################################################ - CONTRIBUTORS/SOURCES - Jeff Minter and Flossie Me, Myself and I Electronic Games: Volume One, Number Six - August, 1982 Special Thanks: Christian "SVEN" Svensson Atari, for planting the seed when I was 10. Can't get any simpler than this! ################################################################ Send Comments, Suggestions and Contributions to: Internet mail: MARSTELLER@wcdc03.pgh.wec.com Jim Marsteller Jr. - JAM 412-244-6667 From CompuServe's Atari Gaming Forums: 10-Mar-95 04:21:11 Sb: #Sega Saturn Announced Fm: SYSOP*Jeff Kovach 74777,3071 To: All On Thursday, Sega officially announced that their new Saturn game system will make it's US debut on September 2nd. The event is being called 'Saturnday' by company officials. While the price is not yet set in stone, it was announced that it is expected to be between $350-$400. Also, they are planning to sell 500,000 units in the US during the 4th quarter. Over 20 games should be available upon launch, with 100 in the stores for Christmas. Things are beginning to heat up! And more from Jeff: Okay, I've gotten an answer from Jeff Minter regarding the ability to duplicate effects on the VLM by playing the same music using the same VLM settings: --------------- Newsgroups: rec.games.video.atari From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Jeffrey Minter) Subject: VLM Question for Llamaman Date: 15 Mar 1995 01:19:48 GMT > Are the patterns generated by VLM somewhat random, or are they >completely dependent upon the music? For example, if I find >that a specific cool-looking pulsing effect, will I get this >exact same thing if I play the same song again with the same >parameters? Just curious... thanks! They are dependent on the music input and the settings of various parameters, some of them under user control. So, for any given setting, you should get similar effects if you play the same tune. \ (:-) - *very* surreal test of my parallax/tiling scroll on the Jag - / floating Flossies over pulsing plasma... CATnips.... Jaguar tidbits from Don Thomas """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" I am pleased to confirm rumors that "Theme Park" is in some stores now and being shipped so that your favorite Jaguar retailer should have copies this week. "Theme Park" is a product by Ocean and follows their recent release of "Syndicate". In "Theme Park", you design and operate the functions of an amusement park with unbelievable attention to detail... from the layout of a world class roller coaster to the small change of a hot dog sale, you must close the season profitably. If you cannot find a retailer in your area with a copy of "Theme Park" or other recent releases such as "Syndicate", "Cannon Fodder" or "Troy Aikman Football", contact one of the fine mail order firms below: ~*~ GREAT MAIL ORDER PLACES TO BUY JAGUAR GAMES ~*~ B&C Computers ...................... (408) 986-9960 Steve's Software ................... (916) 661-3328 Toad Computers ..................... (410) 544-6943 I have heard that some "Cannon Fodder" fans might encounter a quirk on a snowmobile level. I haven't seen that level yet myself, but I am told that the problem is solved if the player presses 'B' during the rank promotion routine. If you happen to encounter this and want more information, contact Virgin @ 805/546-9036. By the way, I am getting a lot of feedback praising "Cannon Fodder". That game has a lot of appeal to watch as well as play. ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Those looking for great Atari Lynx software, don't forget to keep in touch with your favorite Lynx mail order company. B&C tells me they have new shipments of "Bubble Trouble" ($44.95) and "Super Off-Road" ($44.95) in stock. Both of these games are by Telegames. B&C also has received a new game called "T-TRIS" which is based on a similar game by a similar title. They tell me the sound is okay and the graphics are a little less than stunning, but the game play is fantastic. It sounds to me like this game is perfect for "Klax", "Pinball Jam" and "Shanghai" fans. For more information regarding the availability of "T-Tris" for the Atari Lynx, call B&C ComputerVisions at 408/986-9960. _________________________________________ > ONLINE WEEKLY STReport OnLine The wires are a hummin'! """"""""""""""""""""""""""""" PEOPLE... ARE TALKING ===================== On CompuServe ------------- compiled by Joe Mirando CIS ID: 73637,2262 Hidi ho friends and neighbors. I hope everyone enjoyed St. Patrick's Day... It's the one day of the year when we _all_ get to be just a little bit Irish. I'm always a little bit Irish... 1/8 to be exact. Along with the 1/2 Polish, 1/4 Italian, and 1/8 German (A friend of mine tells me that that's a recipe for a guy who gets mad easily... and can't figure out why. What gets me is that that sometimes fits! ) Well, anyway, I hope that everyone enjoyed the day and observed it safely. Drinking and driving... Saint Pat don't play dat!" I'd like to use an old Irish greeting in keeping with the day... God bless all here. Okay, let's get on with all the interesting and useful news and information that magically appears every week right here on CompuServe... From the Atari Computing Forums =============================== "LW" asks for: "Help! I use my Atari 1040st for MIDI/music but I think I should upgrade my operating system. BUT... I have no idea how or where or what! My current system configuration is: TOS Ver 1.2 (22.04.1997, "BLiTTER TOS") GEM DOS Ver 0.19 AES Ver 1.32 Questions: What is 22.04.1997, "BLiTTER TOS" ???? What is AES? Should I upgrade TOS & GEMDOS (are there a later versions)?" Albert Dayes of Atari Explorer Online tells LW: "You can upgrade to TOS v2.06 which is the most current version. There are boards from various manufactures that allow you to use it in older Atari machines. An easier upgrade is to TOS 1.4 which would just involve swapping chips in your 1040ST. It has quite a few benefits over TOS v1.2 or lower. LW asks Albert: "Where would I purchase either of there things (chips or boards)? Is there any reason I should stay away from v2.06? Any idea on either's cost?" ALbert replies: "Toad Computers (410)-544-6943 should probably have everything you need. I'm not sure on the pricing but I would assume the TOS chips would be under $100. The issue with TOS 2.6 is that it would require a hardware modification. The TOS 1.4 update would not require one. That was the main issues between the two chip sets that I wanted to bring up. There are boards or other hardware modifications that do allow for both TOS 1.4 and TOS 2.06 to be present in the same machine also." Our old pal Simon Churchill tells LW: "Just a note for you as your main question has been answered previously. TOS Ver 1.2 'Blitter TOS' Blitter Tos was the first ST operating system to include the routines and space on the mother board for an extra CHIP called the BLITTER. I beleave the STE has the chip fitted as standard. A socket can be put onto the motherboard and the chip added, however I have done this and it's not much fun soldering 64 or more pin's! GEMDOS The 'Graphics Enironment Manager Disk Operating System' - GEMDOS is the hardware controling part of TOS and has nothing to do with GEM. What it dose is control disk managment, memory allocation and other function's very similar to MS-DOS. No guesses to were most of it come from. AES The 'Application Environment Services' - AES which is a part of GEM is a large library of routines which provide window's and the likes which you see. The AES also talk's to the lower level's of TOS via the VDI section. Naturaly there is more than the above in the O/S. I have not included the VDI, BIOS and XBIOS section's, Also there is the GDOS area which is an external program that run's with TOS to add and expand certain funtion's: I.E. Printing, Font's and some Vector graphics. The O/S has seen many undates and TOS 2.06 is the fastes, safest and most reliable version. Although TOS 1.4 would be an improvment it dose suffer from a few added bug's and requires patches to help thing's run that bit smoother. Hope this has expanded your understanding and helped." Chris Allison adds: "There is an upgrade available for your machine. In the UK the best people to talk to would be Compo Software in Huntingdon. The version of TOS in your machine is v1.2 which was called BLITTER TOS 'cos support for the Blitter chip in the mega series was added. THe other version numbers you mention are parts of the operating system. The OS is split into two main areas - TOS and GEM. Tos handles things like Memory management and disk i/o and Gem gives you all the pretty icons on the screen and handles the user interface. Gem is split into two other parts - a program control part -the AES and a device interface part - the VDI. I hope this hasn't confused you." Myles Cohen asks Sysop Jim Ness, the author of QuickCIS: "How do I disable call waiting while using QuickCIS... Where does the *70 go in the CNF file... I've dialed *70 outside the program and I get a dial tone... Does that mean I have to put a few pauses in before the CIS phone number... How does one put pauses in the phone number... Please write a short, pithy treatise on the above questions..." Sysop Keith Joins tells Myles: "Include it in the phone number entry. It should look like ATDT*70,,5551212 or whatever your connect number is. The commas create a pause to allow you to get back to the dial tone before the phone number is sent." Sysop Jim agrees: "As Keith said, just add the *70 and one or more commas in front of the phone number being dialed." Myles tells Jim: "Both you and Keith deserve a big pat on the back...Thanks to both of you..." See that? Myles is not only an interesting and informative guy to talk to, but he's well-mannered too. Meanwhile Byron Followell tells us that he's been... "scoping out the net, trying to learn as much as I can and find a local provider. I've finally found one that'll give me over 420 hours of access per month for only $19.95. No extra, no hidden costs, that's it! I'm sorry to say (not really) that i'm going to have to go with that and drop Compuserve. This is just to say goodbye to everyone i've met here and say, to the few I've helped, glad I could be of service, and, to the ones who gave me help, a heartfelt thank you. Now i've got one more favor to ask of one and all. I know there are bound to be several (possibly many) Atari sites on the net. I'd really aprreciate any addresses for Atari related (Jag, Lynx, ST, and 8-bit) Usenets, FTP sites, WWW sites or anywhere else I can turn to for Atari news and files on the net. As usual, any help would be GREATLY appreciated. Again, I hate to say goodbye to everyone, but, I have to go where the best deal is and, with CServe nickel and dime-ing me to death every month, the net seems to be that place to be. Hope to hear from you all soon and maybe i'll see you 'round the net." Sysop Bob Retelle, a real net surfer (just watch him hang ten) tells Byron: "Maybe we'll see you back here once you *really* experience the "net"... :) In the meantime, one of the primary atari sites is: atari.archive.umich.edu Unfortunately they're almost always busy, but even if all their ftp slots are filled they'll give you a message listing several other "mirror" sites that have the same content they do. Usually you can find one of those that isn't too busy." Ringo Monfort of Lexicor tells Byron: "Well, I'm sorry to see you go away from CIS, regarding Internet information please email me at "email@example.com" on the net and give me your internet mailing address. I will send you FTP, gopher and www information. Take care. Ringo @ Lexicor Tech. Support. PS, On the net you can find Lexicor Software at: ftp ftp.std.com and try the cd pub/atari/graphics/lexicor." Dave Faulk posts: "I would like to be able to view some of the grafics in this forum on my PC. 486 Color. Using windows would be a plus. Is there a Shareware I should download?" Albert Dayes of Atari Explorer Online Magazine tells Dave: "There should be a few programs in the library that allow you to do that. Search the library using the keyword IBM and you should find most if not all of them." Michael Godfrey asks: "Can someone tell me how to get on the Internet?, I would like a local dial in for Atlanta Ga. I have no idea even how to get an account." Sysop Bob Retelle tells Michael: "To access the Internet you need what's called a "service provider" to get you into the net. Some BBSs are now providing that service, and local Internet only services have begun offering access too... you'll need to check any local computer newspapers in the Atlanta area to find out how to contact them (for example, here in Michigan we have the "Michigan Computer User" newspaper which is given away free at computer stores.. it lists several local Internet service providers). In the meantime, you can access many Internet services right here on CompuServe. Just GO INTERNET for more information." On the subject of Atari computers vs. , Richard Brown posts: "I've read this string with much interest. However, when we're talking the pros and cons of the various systems, some seem to think my favoring Atari has something to do with blinders. I should, perhaps, preface my comments with: I have various flavors of Silicon Graphics, all manners of Macintosh, all manners of 486, all manners of Pentium, and all manners of Atari around here. And I'm willing to bet my "average" system on each of these platforms would spell "extreme power user" by any standard. I often think of RAM in 128Mb chunks - hard disks in 80Gb or larger arrays - so, when I'm sitting there at a high end IBM running OS2/Warp and find that copying from the hard disk to a floppy causes an irrecoverable system crash - don't tell me that OS2/Warp on a Pentium 100 with 64Mb RAM and gigs of HD beats even an Atari 1040 ST - for THAT function, Atari is the winner. Sure, I think that bug will get fixed in Warp, but many aspects of that OS is a BIG, roll on the floor and laugh 'til you're blue, joke. BTW, I am a DEVELOPER on the IBM platform, and that's because that's where the MARKET is, but, surprise! A LOT of the development happens on my Atari TT - that is, the creative part - because, even though I have ALL the programs on ALL those other machines, they simply can NOT match the Atari in many important areas. Call it biased, but as a developer, time is money, and my Macs and IBM's waste money. If the Mac 8100 or Pentium outperformed the TT, I'd be there in a heartbeat. From where I sit right now, I can touch a TT, a Mac PowerBook, and two IBM's pigged out in the extreme ($15,000+). Even though Atari has ceased machine production, I find that all too often, push comes to shove, and due to the INABILITY of these other platforms to perform, I am FORCED to jump on the TT, and even, sometimes a Mega 2, on which we have developed some intense text facilities to do things you CAN'T do on a Mac or PC (that is, until we port the code and sell it on those OS's). Why do it on the Mega? It's a free machine and the coding, unlike Mac and Windows, et al, took only HOURS. The PC version will take days, at least. In the real world, no single computer can hack it for all things. We use Macs for what they're worth. Same for PC's. Same for SGI's (ever try word processing on an SGI? Why?). The point is: it astounds me how viable this "ancient" Atari technology is, in SPITE of all things Mac, PC, and SGI (which you find upon your $40K-$400K (or more, MUCH more) purchase has about an 18 month lifespan until it is hopelessly obsolete.) The problem, IMHO, is that when Atari users decide another platform offers something they need, they ABANDON their Atari and have no way to objectively compare their decision. Or they have a limited focus on what they expect from their machines. I have IBM graphics hackers around here that scoff at all things IBM _except_ 3D Studio. And then the Mac guy says "3D Studio is a joke next to Electric Image!" to which the SGI says "Get real. Alias yawns in your general direction!" So, here I am, pecking on a PowerBook thinking the ST Book was kinda nice... and now that I think about it, about 10 times faster than this clunker on anything to do with the file system." Sysop Bob Retelle tells Richard: "I agree that each different system has its strengths and weaknesses.. The Atari systems were always easy to use and usually represented very good value. Unfortunately we'll never be able to see how far they might have gone. (Incidentally, I run OS/2 all the time, and do lots of copying from HD to floppy, sometimes at the same time as multitasking one or two other processes, and have never had it crash.)" Carl Katz asks: "Is there a company that makes a "modem switching" box? I use a music program that uses my modem port as part of the program's hardware hookup and I am constantly plugging and unplugging my modem and syncbox from my 1040- it can't be the best thing for the modem port plug over the long run." Sysop Bob tells Carl: "You can get what's known as an "A-B Switchbox" to hook between your modem port and the two devices you want to switch between.. then you can change from one to the other with the turn of a knob. Check at any well equipped computer store.. be sure to get a box that matches the type of connectors you have (most likely they're standard DB-25 RS-232 connectors). You'll also need a short male to female cable to run from the switchbox to the computer. Also check the "gender" of the connectors. You'll probably want the common connector to be female (the one that goes to the computer), and the switched connectors to be male (the ones that go to the modem and sync box). I use this kind of box to switch my modem between my ST and PC..." Carl tells Bob: "Thanks... I knew that this type of box had to exist, it's just that two of the stores that I called here in Montreal said they had never heard of such a switcher for modems, only for printers. I guess I'll try calling another store here or consult one of the vendors on Compuserve." Bob replies: "Keep on checking, as those "serial switchboxes" really do exist. Actually the companies who make the printer switchboxes also make quite a wide range of other styles too, in addition to the serial and parallel boxes. There are switchboxes allowing you to use one IBM keyboard and monitor for several different PCs, others for switching different styles of connectors, and even what they call an "X" switch that allows reversing two connections.. I originally planned on using that for my ST/PC modem setup, as it would let me reverse the connections between my old 2400 baud modem and my 9600 baud newer one, so both computers would always have a modem attached, but I could decide which one had the faster modem just by turning a switch. I found the regular "A-B" switch first though, and just got that one. Let me know if you still have trouble finding a suitable switchbox, and I'll look up the names of some electronics catalogs I know have them for you." From the Graphics Support Forum =============================== On the subject of PNG, the front-runner for a new graphics standard, Steve Sneed Posts: "I think you'll see freeware GIF->PNG converters popping up very soon after PNG is ratified. Other alternatives may well come into being as well, but PNG looks like it has the best chance of succeeding." Larry Wood, the Graphics Support Forum's Administrator, tells us: "As the Forum Administrator for The Graphics Forums on CompuServe, I can state catagorically that GIF will not be left behind as the new 24-bit format emerges. CompuServe and The 'Go Graphics' Group, along with every Forum Administrator and most BBS Operators I have spoke with, are planning on supporting three formats, GIF, JPG and the new 24-bit, whatever that turns out to be. Also, I would note that many of the shareware authors who support their programs here on CompuServe, have already signed up with Unisys in order to continue GIF support. For the most part, although they see the bookkeeping as being a pain, they don't feel the royalty is out of line. Also, I would add that in my opinion, independent communications software developers, like Steve, are making a mistake by dropping GIF, but of course, that is their choice to make, not mine. I think it will continue to be around for a long time to come." Steve Rimmer of Alchemy Mindworks tells Larry: "Just to keep in touch with reality, we're one shareware author which DOES feel the Unisys royalty is WAY out of line." Glen Tippetts posts: "Let me see if I can add some perspective to this little Unisys inconvenience. NeoSoft has three programs that allow users of these programs to create their own salable executable programs. Up until a few weeks ago these three programs supported including GIF images into the compilation, and displaying them at run-time. We saw no problem with this since we had licensed the graphics handling from Genus, a very reputable company. We have a large number of registered users of the three products. When we learned about the Unisys situation, we immediately took GIF support out of the products, notified our user base of the demand for royalties by Unisys, and sent out new upgrades free of charge to registered users (this all took about 2 months). Unfortunately a number of users had developed fairly complex publications (programs) over the past few months, and are therefore exposed to the Unisys royalty claim. Since we have no way to monitor what or how many publications (programs) are created by a registered user we cannot make an accountably to Unisys. We charge $90 to register NeoBook Pro, no run-time fee, no royalty. We have already been contacted by the attorney of one of our users, stating that if Unisys claims a royalty from them they will in-turn sue us for the costs. I would hope that we would win the case, but even if we did, all it would take is about 1% of our user base suing us to put us out of business because of legal fees. And as far as I know we have done nothing wrong. And in my opinion everyone should drop the Unisys encumbered GIF as quick a they possibly can. Perhaps I'm just sensitive." Diana Gruber tells Glen: "Let's see... your customer writes a GIF-based program. Unisys sues them for royalties. They in turn sue you. You in turn sue Genus. Genus in turn sues CompuServe. Not a lot of software development getting done, but the lawyers sure are having fun. :) BTW, as you know, Genus is our number one direct competitor. And although I like them very much (Chris Howard and I are great friends) I disapprove of the way they are handling this. They immediately signed up with Unisys and passed the costs along to their customers. They didn't put up much of a fight. :( We could have used them on our side." Roderick Frank interjects: "...You could then turn around and in-turn sue Compuserve for misleading us all about the free-to-use nature of the format. Somebody at Compuserve clearly didn't do thier homework, or ignored it. I know no one wants to bite the hand that leads us but it seems to me that CIS has gotten off pretty lightly in this whole discussion." Well, that's an interesting spin, but _I_ for one don't see any culpability on CompuServe's part. They paid their royalties, which allowed them to provide the LZW-bearing code that allowed users like you and me to view GIF files. I don't remember ever seing a post here on CompuServe (or anywhere else) that said "Hey! The LZW algorithm that makes GIF work is free... You can use it in a program and never have to pay for it". It would seem to me that anyone interested in using the LZW algorithms in a program would do the research required to find the patent and patent-holder. CIS has never made a secret of the fact that they had an arrangement with Unisys... you just had to look and listen to know about it. That's about all for this week folks. Tune in next week and be ready to listen to what they are saying when... PEOPLE ARE TALKING _____________________________________ > STReport CONFIDENTIAL "Rumors Tidbits Predictions Observations Tips" """"""""""""""""""""" - Louisville, Colorado NAVCIS Version 2 to be HMI -------------------- NavCIS, the powerful CompuServe Navigator, is about to become even more powerful. Our roving reporter discovered just this past week, NAVCIS version 2 will be fully HMI compliant. That's powerful and fast. Version 1.6 is scheduled to be the last ASCII version. HMI, the heart of the CIS system, allows superior features to be access including the new FTP facility CIS offers. - Sunnyvale, CA ATARI HAS A WINNER WITH JAGUAR ------------- Atari Corp. Long known for superior hardware designs and anemic marking and advertising, is about to become the "comeback kid" of the gaming world if all the chips fall in the right places.. Their latest offering "JAGUAR" is a true 64bit game console that will soon be offering a CDROM and a strong CDRom library. While their most recent earnings statement leaves something to be desired, it sure does read a great deal better than those from their computing days. Most market analysts are quietly murmuring that if Atari blitzes the market within the next sixty days they'll walk away with the American consumer's confidence and entertainment dollars. As one observer said; "Time will tell." - Philadelphia, PA WIN'95: A TRUE "QUANTUM LEAP?" ---------------- Mr. Super Snoop.. Always diligent with the big ear... came up with these few tidbits. A group of "system" lovers had an opportunity to see and work with WIN'95 for a few hours. Unanimously, they felt that it was indeed a threat to their favorite "system" setup. They saw the Plug N Play work flawlessly and marveled at how easy the setup is. At the same time, other, more experienced users from the world of MSDOS, were thrilled at the power, speed and versatility Win'95 offers. One was overheard saying this version of Windows is "no doubt, a quantum leap over anything that was ever called windows in the past. MS will sell millions of copies." - Redmond, WA MICROSOFT SHIPS FINAL WINDOWS 95 BETA; ----------- ON TRACK FOR AUGUST RELEASE Microsoft Corp. today shipped on schedule its final test copy for the Microsoft(R) Windows(R) 95 operating system to 50,000 beta testers worldwide, confirming that Windows 95 is on track for delivery in August 1995. This latest release, known as beta three, marks the final testing release of Windows 95. Microsoft also confirmed that it is on schedule to begin shipping the Windows 95 Preview Program release to 400,000 corporate evaluators at the end of the month. "Beta three is a solid release and an important step in meeting our time line for shipping Windows 95 in August," said Brad Silverberg, senior vice president of the personal systems division at Microsoft. "Our goal continues to be to deliver a high-quality product that will unlock the potential of personal computing for everyone. Feedback from beta testers is critical to us as we focus on this goal." The Windows 95 beta test program, the most extensive ever conducted by Microsoft, has involved numerous software developers, corporate customers, VARs, system integrators and consultants in a rigorous 18-month test cycle. According to Silverberg, this unprecedented level of quality testing is critical to help ensure that Windows 95 is compatible with existing hardware and software, stable and as easy-to-use as possible. Beta Reviews Positive --------------------- Selected early recipients of beta three, who received the build last week, report that the code is stable and broadly compatible with legacy hardware and applications they have tested. "This is the most solid build of Windows 95 Microsoft has released," said beta tester Hank Coleman, chief financial officer for Southern Hospitality Systems. "The product is living up to its promise of offering a new version of Windows that is powerful, easy to use and fully compatible with legacy hardware and software." "The beta three release exceeded our expectations in quality and performance," said J. Paul Grayson, chairman and CEO of Micrografx Inc. "Micrografx is fully committed to offering Windows 95-based versions of our leading graphics applications, such as ABC FlowCharter, Micrografx Designer(TM)and Picture Publisher(R). Our customers will enjoy increased performance and productivity with Micrographx's new 32-bit applications for Windows 95, which will include OLE 2.0, multithreading and the Windows 95-based interface." "Compaq is excited about the final beta release of Windows 95," said John Rose, senior vice president and general manager of the desktop PC division at Compaq Computer Corp. "Through the joint testing efforts of Compaq and Microsoft, we see increased high-quality with each new release, which is in line with Microsoft's commitment to provide a high-quality Windows 95 product this August." "This beta release of Windows 95 provides our customers with a great tool to help them start their migration to Windows 95," continued Rose. "Compaq also will use the final beta release to plan our internal corporate migration. We will continue to jointly test Windows 95 on Compaq(R) PCs to ensure that our customers receive a high-quality solution. Because all Compaq products now shipping are Windows 95-ready, we look forward to delivering the final Windows 95 release to our customers." Windows 95 Preview Program -------------------------- Beta three will become the foundation of the Windows(R) Preview Program, a preshipping copy of Windows 95 that will be distributed to more than 400,000 individuals and organizations to facilitate their migration to Windows 95. A nominal charge of $32 for the Preview copy of Windows 95 covers the cost of materials and technical support. The Preview Program release is scheduled to begin shipping at the end of this month. Individuals interested in participating in the Windows 95 Preview Program should subscribe to the WINNEWS newsletter by sending an electronic mail message to Enews@Microsoft.nwnet.com with the words SUBSCRIBE WINNEWS as the only text in the subject of the message. The retail version of Windows 95 is scheduled to be available in quantity in August 1995. Brazilian Portuguese, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Pan-European and Swedish versions of Windows 95 are scheduled to be available 30 days after the English version of Windows 95 ships. Founded in 1975, Microsoft is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day. NOTE: Microsoft and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. Micrografx Designer is a trademark and Picture Publisher is a registered trademark of Micrografx Inc. Compaq is a registered trademark of Compaq Computer Corp. """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" STReport's "EDITORIAL CARTOON" """""""""""""""""""""""""""""" > A "Quotable Quote" A true "Sign of the Times" """"""""""""""""" Really ..GOOD STUFF! If you think you have a problem with computer addiction.. you probably have. Here are the warning signs: HOW DO YOU KNOW WHEN YOU'RE HOOKED? 13 Symptoms of Computer Addiction 1. During a 2am call to the bathroom you check your e-mail. 2. When your neighbor mentions taking a drive, you think not miles but mbs. 3. When channel-surfing the infomercials, you grab the remote control and double-click. 4. Down at the local computer store they know your name and favorite chip. 5. Your favorite movies are Brainstorm, Tron, War Games, and, of course, 2001; your preferred Murder She Wrote episode is the one in which Jessica solves the case of the fatal disk error. 6. So many relatives and friends call you when they need help with their computers that you're considering installing a 900 number. 7. There's an ISDN line running into your home, and the notion of low baud rates reminds you of nursery schools and training wheels. 8. You have chronic lower back pain, knots in your shoulders, and a cramp in your mouse finger, and you can't see more than three feet in front of your face. 9. Your penmanship looks worse than it did in the fourth grade. 10. You call your PC "Cousin 'Puter". 11. You call your computer chair "The Seat of Power." 12. Never mind those old 5.25-inch floppies, you still have those hoary 8.5 inchers! 13. For that matter, you don't throw out bad floppies, you decorate them and use them as drink coasters. Remember, DENIAL IS NOT A RIVER IN EGYPT. ....David Winograd(SYSOP) 71333,1574 """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" STReport International OnLine Magazine -* [S]ilicon [T]imes [R]eport *- AVAILABLE WORLDWIDE ON OVER 70,000 PRIVATE BBS SYSTEMS """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" STR OnLine! "YOUR INDEPENDENT NEWS SOURCE" March 17, 1995 Since 1987 copyright 1995 All Rights Reserved No.1111 """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" All Items quoted, in whole or in part, are done so under the provisions of The Fair Use Law of The Copyright Laws of the U.S.A. Views, Opinions and Editorial Articles presented herein are not necessarily those of the editors/staff of STReport International OnLine Magazine. Permission to reprint articles is hereby granted, unless otherwise noted. Reprints must, without exception, include the name of the publication, date, issue number and the author's name. STR, CPU, STReport and/or portions therein may not be edited, used, duplicated or transmitted in any way without prior written permission. STR, CPU, STReport, at the time of publication, is believed reasonably accurate. STR, CPU, STReport, are trademarks of STReport and STR Publishing Inc. STR, CPU, STReport, its staff and contributors are not and cannot be held responsible in any way for the use or misuse of information contained herein or the results obtained therefrom. """"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""