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Article #572 (730 is last):
From: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson)
Newsgroups: freenet.sci.comp.atari.mags
Subject: ST Report: 1-Mar-96 #1209
Reply-To: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson)
Posted-By: xx004 (aa789 - Bruce D. Nelson)
Date: Fri Mar  8 10:21:09 1996




                                      
                            Silicon Times Report

                  The Original Independent OnLine Magazine"
                                (Since 1987)
                                      
  March 01, 1996                                                   No. 1209

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 03/01/96 STR 1209  The Original Independent OnLine Magazine!

 - CPU Industry Report - Fonts on the WEB  - Intranet Genie
 - WOW! Is it?         - ThumbsPlus 3.0a   - ZEOS R.I.P.
 - Wildcat! 5 95/NT    - IRS on WEB        - AT&T : ISP
 - Kid's Computers     - MS Direct 3D      - Micrografx News
 
            Online Firms Sue Over Telecom Law
              Amelio Confidant Joins Apple
               Seagate Offers Super Disc

                                   
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Florida Lotto - LottoMan v1.35
Results: 2/24/96: 3 of 6 numbers with 2 matches in 1 play


>From the Editor's Desk...

     Acquisitions, Mergers, Buyouts, Sellouts. the scrambling is on!  Much
like the game of Monopoly, the stakes are high, the game is fast and the
rewards are big time all the way.  That's what's been going on throughout the
computing world's business end.   The scenarios to watch at this time are
actually in two areas.  The world of Internet servers and the recognition of
certain fonting procedures in the world of HTML 3+.  Seems Adobe, Apple and
Netscape want their choice of fonts (type one $$$) and Microsoft is offering
the TrueType Technology at the opposite end of the "schtick".  Personally, I
prefer TTF.. Why??  It offers extremely nice fonts and you are not "hammered"
every time you wish to obtain a new font.  In the server area,  Microsoft has
taken the first steps to remove the ridiculously high price levels often
associated with setting up an Internet Site.  Of course, there are going to
be casualties but then. back when I was in school, the key phrase was
"diversify".. Those who failed to listen then failed.  Those who are not
diversified in the world of the Internet will likely do so at this time too.
If you listen carefully, you can almost hear the crying about MS knocking
down the exorbitantly high prices.

     Have you tried the NEW Microsoft Internet Explorer??  Version 2.0?  It
embarrasses the "competition".  Once you run it, you'll never look back.
WebSites literally come alive with motion and music when setup to be
compatible with IE2.0..  The part is it does not "eat up" half your hard disk
at installation time like some "nifty" can't do without browsers do.  Expect
some spectacular "happenings" now on the Internet side of things at
Microsoft. Keep an eye on the "human dynamo, Brad Silverberg, (Mr. Win95).
He is now at the helm of the Internet division.  Its going to get very
interesting.  Odds are, MS comes on in a very big way with the Internet and..
it will get done right the first time with Brad calling the shots.

     On a sad note. Windows 95 has been out now since August 24th, 1995.. NT
since when??  Its now March 01, 1996 and STILL CANON has yet to produce the
often promised 32bit drivers for their scanners.  Whatever became of
dependability and customer support??  CANON???  Oh, Canon. will there EVER be
drivers??  Or, are you simply killing time `till a stupendous announcement of
a new piece of whatever to take the place of the current crop of ORPHAN
SCANNERS??  According to our research, Canon has blown away a good 40% of is
scanner customer base with their footdragging, "DRIVERGATE".   Canon is HP's
best scanner PR advantage.. Ask anybody waiting for the 32 bit drivers for
Canon's Scanners which crop of scanners they'd recommend.

                                   Ralph..

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                           STReport Headline News
                                      
                      LATE BREAKING INDUSTRY-WIDE NEWS

                   Weekly Happenings in the Computer World

                        Compiled by: Dana P. Jacobson


                      Online Firms Sue Over Telecom Law

CompuServe is among 23 information providers and computer companies filing a
federal lawsuit today against the new ban on indecency on the Internet. The
coalition's suit characterizes the new law as misguided and unenforceable.
The suit seeks to overturn the Communications Decency Act, which, signed
earlier this month, imposes a $250,000 fine and up to six years in prison for
transmitting indecent material in such a way that children could find it on
the Net.

As reported earlier, enforcement of the "Cyberporn" provision already has
been blocked temporarily as a result of another lawsuit, filed by a coalition
led by the American Civil Liberties Union. U.S. District Judge Ronald
Buckwalter said the definition of indecency in the act was too vague.  The
Justice Department said Friday that it would not investigate or prosecute
Internet users for indecent or offensive material until it receives a ruling
from a three-judge panel of the U.S. District Court in Philadelphia, which is
to consider the issue beginning March 21.

Reporting from Philadelphia, Associated Press writer Christopher McDougall
says today's suit "broadens the battlefield" by including more than 50 pages
of explanation about "why the Internet is a new technology deserving of new
laws."  Attorney Bruce Ennis, who filed the lawsuit on behalf of the Citizens
Internet Empowerment Coalition, noted anyone can anonymously post images and
messages over the Internet from anywhere in the world, adding, "How can you
track down offenders in a worldwide and often anonymous system? Something
like 40 million now have access to the Internet."

Besides CompuServe, members of the coalition filing the suit includes Apple
Computers Inc., Microsoft Corp., America Online, the American Library
Association and the Society of Professional Journalists.  McDougall notes the
federal government has a history of restricting broadcast speech because the
channels are limited and listeners and viewers don't have much control over
what they see and hear. The lawsuit maintains that Internet companies are
more like book or magazine publishers than TV stations.

"The coalition contends that rather than a ban, there are less restrictive
means, such as in-home blocking software, to protect children or other users
from offensive content," AP observes.  The full text of the new complaint is
available at the Web site of the Center for Democracy and Technology (which
can be reached at Web address http://www.cdt.org/).

                      Telecom Bill Suits to Be Combined

A suit brought by a coalition of information providers, computer companies,
and writers and editors against the new federal ban on indecency on the
Internet is likely to be combined with a similar action filed earlier this
month by civil libertarians.  As reported, the suit filed by 23 firms --
including CompuServe, America Online, Prodigy, Netcom On-line Communications
Services, Apple Computer Inc., Microsoft Corp., the Newspaper Association of
America, the American Library Association, the Association of Publishers,
Editors and Writers and the Society of Professional Journalists --
characterizes the new Communications Decency Act, signed into law earlier
this month, as misguided and unenforceable.

Meanwhile, in another development, Playboy magazine has filed yet a third
suit against the controversial new law. "The Communications Decency Act is a
dangerous attack on constitutionally protected speech," CEO Louis Rossetto of
Wired magazine's parent Wired Ventures Ltd. told Linda Dailey Paulson of
United Press International. "Wired magazine -- whose content is completely
legal and acceptable in print form -- would be prevented from reproducing
portions of the magazine online, or from offering an online forum for free-
spirited debate about the stories we publish."

Wired editor Todd Lappin adds, "This is not a leftist freak issue.  It is not
a 'card-carrying member of the ACLU' issue. It is a First Amendment
infringement issue that is intolerable."  The suit augments a similar action
spearheaded by the American Civil Liberties Union earlier this month and
seeks to have the legislation of this section of the Telecommunications Act
declared unconstitutional.  The new suit also seeks to have the unique
characteristics of the Internet formally recognized within a legal context.
The law at issue imposes a $250,000 fine and up to six years in prison for
transmitting indecent material in such a way that children could find it on
the Internet.

Paulson reports the new suit differs from that filed by the ACLU in that "it
represents the unique interests of those who rely on the Internet as a mode
of communication."  Says UPI, "In addition to challenging the 'indecency'
language, this suit holds that because the Internet is a uniquely democratic
medium, it deserves robust First Amendment protection."  Another plaintiff in
the suit is an umbrella group known as the Citizens Internet Empowerment
Coalition, which hopes to mobilize individual Internet users by encouraging
them to join the organization and the suit, thus demonstrating the unique
character of the Internet in court.

Writing in an essay distributed on the Internet recently, Microsoft chief
Bill Gates said, "The Bill of Rights is the foundation on which our nation is
built. The Internet is an enormously valuable place in which those rights
must continue to thrive. Both the Bill of Rights and the Internet are
potentially fragile. Mess with either of them too much, and we might ruin
them. We can't let this happen."  On the other side of the debate, Sen. Jim
Exon, one of the law's sponsors, accused the computer companies in the new
lawsuit of being "more interested in profits from pornography than protecting
children."  Associated Press writer Christopher McDougall quotes a statement
from Exon (D-Nebraska) as saying, "We don't allow children to walk into adult
bookstores, and shouldn't allow them to freely browse the red light districts
of the Internet either."

As reported earlier, enforcement of the new act has been blocked temporarily
by the ACLU's suit, filed Feb. 8. U.S. District Judge Ronald Buckwalter said
the definition of indecency in the act was too vague.  (The law defines
indecency as "any comment, request, suggestion, proposal, image or other
communication that, in context, depicts or describes, in terms patently
offensive as measured by contemporary community standards, sexual or
excretory activities or organs.")   Bruce Ennis, Washington attorney for the
coalition, told McDougall the new complaint will be consolidated with the
ACLU lawsuit. A three-judge panel of the U.S. District Court in Philadelphia
is to consider the issue beginning March 21.

Meanwhile, Playboy Entertainment Group Inc. has sued the U.S. Department of
Justice, Attorney General Janet Reno and the Federal Communications
Commission in a constitutional challenge to the telecommunications act.
Reporting from Wilmington, Delaware, the Reuter News Service quotes an
information paper filed yesterday in the U.S. District Court in Delaware as
saying Playboy seeks a restraining order against the same controversial
section of the Communications Decency Act.  "Playboy's constitutional
challenge invokes the First and Fifth Amendments," Reuters says.

                       Playboy Suit Challenges TV Law

Playboy magazine's suit against the new Telecommunication Act targets the
law's provisions on cable TV, contending the ban on obscenity discriminates
against adult-oriented services.   As reported, Playboy has filed the third
suit against the Telecommunications Act since its signing in law earlier this
month. Associated Press writer Jeannine Aversa reports this morning that at
issue in the Playboy suit is a section of the telecommunications act that
requires cable companies to block sexually explicit programs so
nonsubscribers can't hear them or see even distorted images.

The section, which takes effect March 9, applies only to channels that are
"primarily dedicated" to sexually explicit programs -- for instance,
Playboy's channels, Spice or Adam & Eve -- but not to sexually explicit
programs carried on HBO, Showtime or other cable channels.

Playboy has asked a federal court in Delaware to suspend enforcement of the
provision on the ground that it is unconstitutional.  As noted, the new law
also is being challenged by a coalition of information providers, computer
companies and writers and editors who characterize its Communications Decency
Act as misguided and unenforceable. The suit likely will be merged with a
similar action filed earlier this month by the American Civil Liberties Union
and 19 other groups, questioning the constitutionality of the online
obscenity ban.

                      Compaq, Packard Bell Settle Suits

Compaq Computer Corp and Packard Bell Electronics Inc. have apparently
settled the unfair competition lawsuits they filed against each other last
year.  The Reuter News Service reports that documents filed in U.S. District
Court of Delaware show a settlement between the computer makers, with only
details yet to be completed. Trial had been scheduled to start on Monday.

In a suit filed last April, Compaq alleged that Packard Bell had violated
federal law by failing "to disclose to potential purchasers of their products
that they may be buying a computer that contains used components." In a
countersuit, Packard Bell accused Compaq of unfair competition and defamation
and alleged that Compaq had failed to disclose that its PCs could contain
"retested" components.

Reuters says the documents show that no money is involved in the settlement.
The settlement includes the dismissal of Packard Bell's libel charges against
Compaq Senior Vice President Ross Cooley, but doesn't include a patent
lawsuit brought by Compaq against Packard Bell in U.S. District Court in
Houston. In that suit, Compaq alleges infringement of patents for power
conservation, video display and high-speed switching.

                       Court Lets Stand Copyright Rule

Without comment, the U.S. Supreme Court today let stand a copyright ruling
that observers say could jeopardize the existence of independent companies
that service and maintain computers.  Reporting from Washington, Associated
Press writer Richard Carelli says the justices rejected an appeal "that urged
them to say a temporary, electronic copy of a computer program created in a
computer's random access memory is not capable of being a copyright
infringement."

Last year, a federal judge in San Francisco ruled Southeastern Express Co., a
small computer service and maintenance business, had infringed on the
software copyrights of Triad Systems Corp., maker of computers and software
programs. (Triad's products are used by automotive parts stores, enabling
them to automate their sales, inventory and accounting tasks.)

Carelli notes Southeastern was founded in 1989 by former Triad employees and
is in business to service Triad computers, putting it in direct competition
with Triad.  The 1992 lawsuit alleged Southeastern infringed on Triad's
software copyrights by routinely maintaining Triad computers for owners who
sign Triad licensing agreements. To service a Triad computer, a Southeastern
technician used the software in a Triad customer's possession.

In the lower court ruling, U.S. District Judge Fern M. Smith ordered
Southeastern to stop servicing Triad computers after concluding that the
loading of Triad's operating system software into the RAM made a "copy" under
federal copyright law. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the
preliminary injunction against Southeastern last August.

In its Supreme Court appeal, Southeastern was supported in friend-of-the-
court briefs submitted by various electronic service business groups, one of
which commented, "The 9th Circuit's misinterpretation of copyright law will
prevent independent service companies from competing with manufacturers" in
various high-tech endeavors that use computer software programs.

                        Bills Address Net Encryption

A deadlock between the White House and the Internet industry over software
encryption is addressed in two bills to be introduced in Congress soon, but
observers find industry executives lukewarm to the proposals.  Writing in The
Wall Street Journal this morning, reporter Jared Sandberg says the bills --
sponsored by Democratic Sen. Patrick J. Leahy of Vermont and GOP Rep. Robert
W. Goodlatte of Virginia -- seek to loosen government restrictions on
encryption, the mathematical formulas used to scramble data beyond
recognition of eavesdroppers.

At issue is the government's banning export of strong encryption because, it
says, it hampers its efforts to monitor the actions of terrorists and foreign
governments. As noted, the Clinton administration wants to set up government
approved repositories that keep copies of mathematical keys for decoding
encrypted information, so law enforcement officials can decode private
communications if granted a court order.

Net executives counter that widespread use of strong encryption is essential
to the success of electronic commerce over the Internet, arguing export
restrictions on strong cryptography hurt business abroad where competitors
can freely offer stronger encryption software.   "Producing a separate weaker
version of encryption software for foreign markets," says Sandberg, "not only
raises costs but is becoming pointless because hackers can now access
computers powerful enough to break the weaker code."

Leahy told the paper, "The federal government's ideas on encryption are based
on a situation which may have existed 10 or 20 years ago with very little
realization of the realities of today. We're not going to sell our computer
programs if we have outdated computer technology, especially if people can
buy it in Europe or Asia." The Journal says the two new bills would allow for
the export of much stronger encryption provided that level of security was
"generally available."

Leahy's proposal states the key-escrow scheme will be voluntary, and
establishes rules by which companies -- rather than government agencies --
would hold the keys for decoding data. These companies would be liable for
abuse of keys and subject to strict procedures for releasing the keys to law
enforcement.  While industry executives welcome the bills, "they say the
measures don't go far enough to unshackle high-tech companies," Sandberg
reports.

For instance, product manager Thomas Parenty of Sybase Inc. told Sandberg
that while both bills represent "a good start," allowing U.S. companies to
export encryption only as strong as that which is available overseas, the
bills won't allow them to innovate and produce superior products. And, he
said, putting keys in the hands of third-party companies is still likely to
meet industry opposition.  Sandberg adds, "People familiar with the bills
said one motivation is to build support for a private version of the key-
escrow concept, which could be an opportunity for several companies who are
selling products based on the idea."

                         Silicon Graphics Eyes Cray

Word is 3-D graphics leader Silicon Graphics Inc. is set to acquire control
of supercomputer maker Cray Research Inc.  Citing anonymous sources, The New
York Times reports this morning that Eagan, Minnesota-based Cray initiated
talks because it has been struggling financially and government customers
were reluctant to continue buying.  "There are certain obvious synergies
between the two that could be explored through other ways than an outright
acquisition," analyst Gary Smaby at Smaby Associates in Minneapolis told Eric
Auchard of the Reuter News Service.

Smaby said Cray computers use chips from Sun Microsystems Inc. and Digital
Equipment Corp., two of Silicon Graphics's biggest competitors.  Auchard says
an acquisition or other form of alliance could give Silicon Graphics a new
market for its computer chips as well as access to Cray's supercomputer
expertise, which could be used in machines aimed at businesses managing big
databases.  Reuters notes the market for supercomputers has been shrinking
because of declining government sales and competition from Silicon Graphics
and other companies.  Of a possible acquisition of Cray, Gruntal analyst
Roxane Googin says, "What it shows to me is that (Silicon Graphics is)
continuing to retreat from the low end into a rather profitless high-end
business.

The best thing for them to do is to face the pressure of (Microsoft Corp.'s)
NT and Intel Corp. and the low-end computer makers head-on." (She refers to
growing popularity of PCs based on Microsoft Windows and Intel's Pentium
processors.)  Meanwhile, the Associated Press quotes "one person familiar
with the talks" as saying Silicon Graphics is to acquire a majority interest
in Cray, but not buy the entire company, a plan meant to protect the firms'
stock prices.

                       Cray Research Deal Put at $739M

In a stock and cash deal valued at $739.2 million, Silicon Graphics Inc. has
agreed to buy supercomputer maker Cray Research Inc.  As reported, Eagan,
Minnesota-based Cray initiated talks because it has been struggling
financially and government customers were reluctant to continue buying.
Writing in The Wall Street Journal this morning, reporters Joan E. Rigdon and
William M. Bulkeley say Silicon Graphics's buyout is "a move that it hopes
will eventually bolster its presence in corporate America's back office."

The deal calls for 3-D graphics leader Silicon Graphics to offer $30 a share
for 19.2 million Cray shares, or 75 percent of the company. It would then
convert Cray's remaining shares to Silicon Graphics stock on
a 1-for-1 basis. The deal is expected to close April 1.  "Some analysts said
Silicon Graphics got a good price, given Cray's $437 million order backlog
and its expectations to complete a turnaround this year," the Journal
comments. "But analysts said Cray, which is an unprofitable leader of a
shrinking supercomputer market, could not have gotten a higher bid."

                        Amelio Confidant Joins Apple

Apple Computer Inc. has named George M. Scalise to the position of executive
vice president and chief administrative officer, effective March 11.  Scalise
will be a member of Apple's executive leadership team, reporting to Chairman
and CEO Gilbert F. Amelio.  Scalise, 62, worked with Amelio at National
Semiconductor Corp., where he was also executive vice president and chief
administrative officer. At the chip maker he oversaw the company's human
resources, business development, corporate communications and external
affairs.

He will handle similar functions at Apple although his role is not yet fully
defined, says the computer maker.  Before joining National Semiconductor in
1991, Scalise was president and CEO of disk drive maker Maxtor Corp.
Previously, he held various executive management positions at Advanced Micro
Devices and Fairchild Semiconductor.  "George Scalise has been an outstanding
member of the senior management team at National Semiconductor and has
exceptional skills and experience in a number of business areas," says
Amelio.

"At a time in Apple's history when flawless execution is particularly
important, he will be a valuable addition to our management team. We're
delighted to have him aboard."  "Apple has a tradition of excellence in
people, products and technology," says Scalise. "I look forward to building
on that foundation as a new member of the Apple team."!

                      Motorola, Sun Set Cyber Alliance

Motorola Inc. and Sun Microsystems Inc. are joining forces to help cable
operators bring high-speed data communications and Internet services to the
home.  The deal will merge Motorola's cable modem technology with Sun's
highly touted Java Web-oriented programming language.  The partners describe
their new "Cyberspace Alliance" as a significant step toward the industry's
overall goal of interoperability of broadband data technologies based on open
standards and protocols.

The companies will integrate Motorola's CyberSURFR cable modem technologies
with Sun's head-end server and Internet server and Java software. Sun's
Solstice Enterprise Manager software will be used for integrated network
management of telephony and data solutions.   Motorola will also work to
optimize the performance of its CableComm and CyberSURFR data systems for
Java applications as well as future Java-based network appliances.

Sun and Motorola say they will establish a team to formulate technical
guidelines for open systems-based solutions. The companies notes they will
work with industry leaders and standards bodies to promote open protocols for
broadband solutions.

"Sun's server and systems implementation expertise will strengthen Motorola's
ability to deliver complete voice, video and data solutions to our broadband
customers and accelerate the deployment of high-speed data networks
throughout the U.S.," says James M. Phillips, Motorola's corporate vice
president.

"We believe the powerful combination of Sun's Internet and server
technologies with Motorola's cable modem technology will give cable operators
a distinct competitive advantage in delivering consumer based broadband
services," adds Scott McNealy, president and CEO of Sun Microsystems.
"Similar to the Internet revolution, the widespread deployment of broadband
Internet services to the home will be driven by technologies that are based
on open -- not single vendor -- standards."

                         Oracle Previews Net Machine

Oracle Corp. says its new $500 system designed specifically for accessing the
Internet is expected to go on sale in September. Demonstrating a prototype of
the company's new Network Computer in San Francisco, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison
told reporters the device will let people exchange e-mail, do word processing
and get onto the Net. He expects the machine also will have voice mail and
fax capabilities.

Business writer Karyn Hunt of the Associated Press observes, "In addition to
being less expensive than a typical $1,500 personal computer, the device most
used for going online now, Oracle's machine is supposed to be easier to use.
But it will not perform many of the useful tasks that personal computers do,
such as running the huge variety of existing programs for balancing their
checkbooks, planning new gardens or figuring out taxes. Eventually, programs
sent over the Internet may provide such capabilities."

Oracle Vice President Andy Laursen of the network computing unit told Hunt,
"It's not so much a computer as it is an information device. We're not trying
to build a stripped down PC. It's not competitive with a PC. A PC does a lot
but is complicated to learn to use. A network computer is more like a
telephone set in that it's easy to use."

AP says the Network Computer will come in several designs:

˙    One plugs a keyboard and mouse into a television set to use the TV as
     the screen.
˙    Another uses a remote control device with the television screen.
˙    A third plugs a small screen into the telephone.
˙    A fourth is more like a laptop computer.
˙    A fifth is a desktop version, like a personal computer.

Hunt reports Ellison says several consumer electronics companies have agreed
to license Oracle software to make the devices, though he did not identify
them.  Oracle hopes greater usage of the Net will drive demand for its server
software, which allows storage and transmission of virtually any type of
data, including video, music, maps, text and numbers. As reported, Oracle is
not alone in this new market. Several other manufacturers also are exploring
the possibility of offering lower-cost, less powerful computing machines that
can access the Net and other data networks.

                     HP to Install Zip Drives in New PC

Under a deal with Iomega Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co. will become the first
retail PC vendor to install a Zip drive in one of its systems.  The new HP
Pavilion 7110Z PC minitower system will ship with a built-in 100MB Zip drive.
The machine also features a 120MHz Pentium microprocessor, 16MB of RAM, and a
1.260MB hard disk. HP says it expects the new model to become available this
spring for $2,349.

The Zip drive, which uses removable floppy-like disks, is designed to store
to store infrequently used data as well as to back up files. "Iomega's Zip
drive enables HP to give Pavilion PC customers built-in storage capabilities
that they cannot currently get from any other retail PC vendor," says Harry
W. McKinney, general manager of HP's home products division.

"The ability to back up programs and files, expand hard disks and simply use
a higher capacity disk for today's popular multimedia applications lets
customers extend the capabilities of their HP Pavilion PC."  The Zip drive is
also available in external and internal add-on versions for most PC and
Macintosh systems.

                          Seagate Offers Super Disc

A disc drive capable of storing 23.4 billion bytes of data - the highest-
capacity to date in the industry -- has been introduced by Seagate Technology
Inc., which says the device will be on the market by the third quarter of
this year.

Reporting from Seagate's Scotts Valley, Calif., offices, United Press
International quotes company officials as saying the 5.25-inch Elite 23
provides more than 2 1/2 times the capacity of the next largest disc drive
currently available and can be used with mainframes, servers and digital
audio/video applications.  Seagate did not disclose what it plans to charge
for the device.  The company said the drive can transfer data at speeds of up
to 12.1 million bytes per second.

                      Softbank Completes Ziff-Davis Buy

Japan's Softbank Corp. says it has completed its acquisition of Ziff-Davis
Publishing Co. from Forstmann Little & Co., a New York investment firm.  As
previously announced, the purchase of Ziff-Davis was made in conjunction with
Mac Inc., Softbank's majority stockholder. The purchase price was $2.1
billion, with $1.8 billion coming from Softbank and $300 million from Mac.

Softbank says Ziff-Davis will continue to be operated and managed as a single
entity. Its current management team will remain in place and Eric Hippeau,
chairman and CEO of Ziff- Davis, will report to Masayoshi Son, president and
CEO of Softbank. All of Ziff-Davis's current business units and products will
remain together and all of its development projects will stay on their
respective courses, says Softbank, which affirms there will be no changes in
the way Ziff-Davis interacts with the marketplace.

"Since we first looked at acquiring Ziff-Davis more than a year ago, the
company has performed above expectations," says Son. "We look forward to
strong growth ahead for its core business and also see Ziff-Davis as
a source of major new ideas and initiatives. Its exceptional management team
and world-class employees should feel excited to be part of Softbank. We
respect their expertise and dedication, value the quality of their products
and fully endorse their extremely high standards of editorial excellence,
independence and integrity."

"We are very proud and happy that Ziff-Davis attracted such an ardent
suitor," says Hippeau. "Masayoshi Son is committed to the computer industry
and shares our belief in its continued growth. He has a long-term vision for
Softbank and it includes investing aggressively in its various groups.

Founded in 1981, Softbank is Japan's largest distributor of computer
software, peripherals and systems, as well as Japan's largest publisher of
computer-related magazines and books.  Ziff-Davis publishes a wide range of
computer magazines and online computing content. In the U.S., the company
publishes PC Magazine, PC Week, PC Computing, Computer Shopper, MacUser and
MacWEEK, among other titles. Internationally, Ziff-Davis publishes computer
magazines in Britain, Germany, France, Mexico and China.

                         New Web Type Fonts Planned

Adobe Systems Inc., Apple Computer Inc. and Netscape Communications Corp. say
they will work together to define and deliver HTML extensions that will allow
a new array of type fonts on the World Wide Web.  The three companies expect
to provide an open, cross-platform technology solution for using Type 1 and
TrueType fonts in Web HTML and Adobe Acrobat PDF documents.

The firms say the new web font technology marks a significant advance in the
visual appeal of Internet  information. They note that people viewing
information on the Web will benefit from a rich font assortment on a page
with excellent performance. People creating information for the Web will be
able to choose from numerous fonts and ensure that users see their pages as
they were originally intended to be seen.

The companies plan to submit the technology to the World Wide Web Consortium
(W3C) and Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) as a proposed extension to
HTML. The technology will be usable by style sheet designs, such as the one
the W3C is developing for HTML 3.0.

"This new web font technology adds dramatic new dimensions to the Internet
experience enabling Netscape users to view and create pages with new
richness," says James Clark, chairman and founder of Netscape.
"We intend to bring to the Internet the kind of visually compelling
information users have come to expect in other media, such as print
publications and CD-ROMs," adds John Warnock, chairman and CEO of Adobe.

                      WOW! CompuServe Names New Service

CompuServe Inc. has unveiled the official name and logo of its new consumer
online service.  The service will be known as "WOW! from CompuServe." The
company says it made the name selection after extensive consumer market
research.  "WOW! from CompuServe is a dynamic new online service. Its name
reflects the excitement and energy of the service itself," says Scott
Kauffman, CompuServe's vice president of consumer markets and general manager
of WOW! "Furthermore, the WOW! name allows us to build upon the established
credentials of CompuServe -- the most extensive online information service in
the world -- in a consumer-friendly way."

WOW! from CompuServe is a new consumer online service created specifically
for at-home use. CompuServe notes that the service offers each household
member easy access to information, entertainment and communication --
including the Internet -- combined with the flexibility to customize and
control the online experience. It includes distinct views for grown-ups and
children, easy electronic mail, seamless Internet access and multimedia that
enlivens the service with sound and motion.

"All elements of WOW! from the design and structure of the service to the
marketing and distribution channels -- and even the selection of its name --
have been developed with the consumer in mind," adds Kauffman. "We intend to
establish ourselves in the increasingly competitive online marketplace as the
best service for the at-home consumer, backed by the most comprehensive and
sophisticated systems infrastructure in the industry."

The WOW! from CompuServe logo features the word "WOW" with a gray starburst
behind it. A key feature of the logo is the distinctive exclamation mark in
bold red. The words "from CompuServe" are an integral part of the mark.
CompuServe will preview the new service and announce the start date and
pricing at a press event in New York City on March 13. Windows 95 users can
reserve their copy now by calling 1-800-9GETWOW (1-800-943-8969).

                      AT&T Announces Internet Services

AT&T today unveiled its plans to offer access to the Internet nationwide,
saying existing long-distance customers will get the service for free for the
first year if they use the network for five hours a month or less.  The free
access is available only for a year to people who sign up during 1996.

Business writer Evan Ramstad of the Associated Press quotes AT&T will charge
$19.95 a month for unlimited access to the Net by existing customers, while
customers of other long-distance or cellular services will be able to sign up
for AT&T's Internet access at a higher rate.

"The move," Ramstad comments, "represents a price challenge to other
services, which generally start with monthly charges of $5 to $10 and can
range to many times that for heavy users. It also represents another step in
the company's ability to combine several kinds of telecommunications
service."

Vice President Tom Evslin of AT&T WorldNet Service told Ramstad his employer
is able to offer the service because it faces lower costs for signing up
customers than companies that just provide online access. "It's a lot cheaper
to sell a new service to an existing customer," he added, noting AT&T has 80
million long-distance customers.

AT&T said it will take orders immediately for WorldNet Service, which begins
March 14.  AP says AT&T will charge people who do not use any of its other
phone services $4.95 for three hours of access per month, plus $2.50 per hour
for each additional hour. Unlimited monthly access will cost $24.95 to non-
AT&T customers.

Meanwhile, the Reuter News Service says AT&T planned to phase out the
Interchange Online service, which it bought from Ziff Communications Co. in
December 1994 for an estimated $50 million. Worldnet will include Netscape
Communications Corp.'s Web browser software, Reuters added.

                      Toshiba Unveils Fast CD-ROM Drive

Toshiba America Information Systems Inc. says it has developed the
industry's fastest slimline CD-ROM drive.  Toshiba's new XM-1402B is a six-
speed internal drive that offers a 900K per second data transfer rate as well
as 160ms random seek and 190ms average access times.  Toshiba says the
drive's performance, attributable to its high rotation speed, was
accomplished by accelerating the processing speed of the digital signal
processor used in error correction and by improving the pick-up motor to
support higher speed data accessing.

Designed for use in notebook computers, the drive has a 3.7 watt average
power consumption. The unit incorporates a power-saving function that cuts
consumption to 85 milliwatts when the drive is in a wait state. The drive
operates with a 5 volt power supply.  The XM-1402B is priced from $140 in
manufacturer quantities.  Toshiba America Information Systems Inc. is
headquartered in Irvine, California.

                           ZEOS PCs Bite the Dust

Micron Electronics Inc. reports that it will discontinue sales of its ZEOS PC
line. The Boise, Idaho-based company also says it will close its Minneapolis
manufacturing operations effective April 30.  Approximately 300 jobs will be
eliminated by the shutdown. Micron notes that qualified candidates will have
the opportunity to apply for other positions within the company, including
positions in the firm's Minneapolis call center and other locations.  Micron
plans to take an approximate $30 million restructuring charge to pay for the
closing. The company notes that the charge will result in a net loss for its
second fiscal quarter when results are announced in March.


Intranet Genie STR Infofile

              Frontier Technologies Announces Industry's First
                     Turnkey Intranet Software Solution

Intranet Genie Uses Web-centric Paradigm to Enable Companies to improve
internal communications and automate  everyday procedures

Mequon, WI -- February 26, 1996 --Frontier Technologies today unveiled the
first ready-to-use Intranet solution designed to bring the benefits of the
Internet computing paradigm to businesses that do not have extensive in-house
computing  expertise.  Intranet Genie provides both client and server
software that will, from day one, allow employees to improve  internal
communication and automate numerous everyday functions.

"Although 1995 was a watershed year for the Internet, it is clearly still the
domain of early adopters," said Dr. Prakash  Ambegaonkar, Frontier
Technologies Chief Executive Officer.  "Frontier's goal is to offer turnkey
solutions for companies that are not populated with UNIX gurus and who do not
wish to make a large investment hand-crafting an  Intranet system. Now small
to medium-size companies can realize the benefits that large firms have found
from using internal web servers."

Intranet Genie offers -- on a single CD-ROM -- both the client and server
software required to install a secure, fully-functional Intranet.  The
components include Frontier's Windows NT-based SuperWeb Server, complete with
advanced  search capabilities and numerous small applications, as well as
client software, including an Internet browser, web  administration and
authoring tools, and secure email.

"Intranet Genie is a ready-to-use solution but is based on open standards
such as TCP/IP and HTTP," said Dr. Ambegaonkar.  "That makes the system
completely customizable and extensible.  Our customers will never be locked
into a single-vendor solution, and this is what makes the Intranet paradigm
so much more valuable than proprietary  groupware solutions."

Intranet Genie will work either with the provided browser and web server or
with platforms of the user's choice such as  Netscape Navigator or Microsoft
Information Server.

Frontier Technologies Unique Advantage The strength of Intranet Genie
offering rests on three distinguishing features:

High-performance Web Server:
SuperWeb Server, designed from the ground up for Intranet use, is optimized
for Windows NT, making it especially suited for smaller companies that have
no UNIX experience.  The server supports remote administration and content
creation, allowing multiple people within a company to create and update web
pages.  For example, the HR manager can  not only update employee benefit
information directly from his or her desktop, but can also control access to
the  information, perhaps limiting access to confidential data to a select
group of employees.  The remote administration tools  are extremely graphical
and intuitive, with full WYSIWYG editing capabilities.

Single interface for finding information:
A common problem in any organization is finding internal information quickly,
whether it is last month's press release,  or a product spec sheet.  Frontier
Technologies' award-winning CyberSearch has been enhanced to allow users to
search  any collection of data indexed by the Verity search engine, internal
information stored on Intranet web servers or file servers, internal
discussion groups, or any live data feed such as Reuters financial
information.  The information can be "bookmarked" in user-defined categories.
CyberSearch is unique in that it also includes a version of the well-
respected  Lycos catalog of the Internet, allowing users to locate both
internal and external Internet information through one interface and a single
query.  The Lycos catalog is available both on CD or for LAN access.

Overall value proposition:
Complete Intranet solution on one CD:  Intranet Genie is designed to be
installed within hours.  Frontier's unique web builder set-up program is a
step-by-step guide to establishing an Intranet.   WebBuilder will set up
folders for each department, convert existing documents, such as press
releases, from their original format into web pages, and also establish lists
of users with appropriate access levels.   The Web Builder will also allow
the user to  choose whether to install or customize a number of useful web-
based applications provided by Frontier to automate  everyday internal tasks,
such as conference room management or purchase requisition.

Security For Internal Information
When used in conjunction with a firewall product, Intranet Genie offers
protection of internal communications.  Only  authorized users may access
both Intranet and Internet resources.  Intruders are prevented from obtaining
sensitive  company information.

Frontier Technologies will partner with several Firewall vendors to ensure
interoperability of each supplier's products.

Pricing Strategy and Availability
Intranet Genie will be available in 2Q, 1996. Pricing will be announced at
that time and will be extremely competitive.   Some components (for example,
email and TCP/IP, which many customers will already have) will be charged a
la carte.   Frontier expects this product will be very attractive to its
distribution channel, which has experience in targeting the small  to medium
sized business.  Frontier is therefore committed to building a strong
Frontier Technologies Internet Partners  program which gives resellers the
marketing and training required to profitably sell and support Intranet
Genie.

About Frontier Technologies
Frontier Technologies Corporation's mission is to pioneer Internet and
Intranet applications that make individuals more  productive and businesses
more competitive in a global market.  The company is a proven technology
leader with award- winning networking products for Microsoft Windows,
Windows95, and Windows NT environments, including SuperWeb  Server,
CyberJunction, SuperHighway Access 2, CyberSearch, and SuperTCP Suite 96.
Frontier Technologies is a  global company with headquarters near Milwaukee,
Wisconsin.  With offices in California, Pennsylvania, and India,  Frontier
Technologies now employs more than 150 people worldwide.

SuperWeb Server, SuperHighway Access, SuperHighway Access 2, CyberSearch,
CyberJunction, SuperTCP Suite 96, SuperTCP Suite, SuperTCP/NFS, SuperTCP,
SuperNFS, SuperX, Internet Organizer, and CyberMark Organizer are  trademarks
of Frontier Technologies Corporation.  Other trade names,trademarks, and
registered trademarks are the property of their respective holders.

Contact:
Ann M. Krauss
Tel: 520-797-0583
Fax: 520-797-0182
Email:Ann@Frontiertech.com

Nicole E. Rogers
Tel: 414-241-4555 x293
Fax: 414-241-7084
Email: NicoleR@Frontiertech.com


Wildcat! 5 95/NT STR Focus     "The Best Keeps Getting Better!"


        Wildcat! 5 - Project Annihilator  - Preview Information Sheet
                                      
                               January 1, 1996

The Overview

Interactive Multimedia Reaches the On-line Application Market

Mustang Software is developing a system to empower the corporate, business,
small office and hobbyist community to offer full on-line multimedia to
customers, staff and prospects. The development name of the project is
Annihilator and it has entered beta testing at several hundred locations. It
will be released as Wildcat! 5 for Windows 95 and Windows NT.

Annihilator is a true Windows 95 or Windows NT client/server application
designed to provide a BBS-based solution for a broad range of customers. It
delivers an exciting interactive multimedia experience for callers by
allowing the system operator to make use of familiar multimedia tools,
including JPEG and GIF editors, for customization of the caller interface.
For backward compatibility all aspects of the system are accessible via
standard ANSI connectivity but when accessed using the free remote client,
the caller is greeted with an exciting multimedia experience. The support
engine for offering remote graphics to the caller is included at no
additional cost, and the Wildcat! Navigator suite is slated for free
distribution.

Annihilator takes full advantage of the new multitasking in Windows 95 and
the robust server operations in Windows NT to provide a solution for every
online need. The Windows 95 platform has been selected to support small to
medium load systems while the Windows NT platform was chosen to provide high
performance on-line solutions utilizing its single and multi-processor
support.

True Client/Server Technology

The Bulletin Board System arena is the latest market segment to be courted by
advertisements touting the benefits of "client/server" technology.  However,
upon closer inspection, "client/server" is often used to refer to the use of
a proprietary remote program (the client) to dial into a BBS application (the
server). While the use of a remote graphic client is an exciting aspect of
many of the newer BBS technologies including `Annihilator', it does not
represent true client/server functionality at the application program level,
the location where its true power can be unleashed.

So What is Client/Server?

Client/server, at its simplest level, is an architecture that involves client
processes requesting service from server processes.  Client/server computing
recognizes that those client modules need not all be executed within the same
memory space, that is, the processes that distribute the information need not
all be a part of the same single program. Separation of the client and server
modules provides improved security and performance. By implementing a BBS
with a core information server, and routing that information using a number
of application clients at the sysop's location, a system can be established
that delivers more information at greater speed, even on a single PC running
Windows 95.

Isn't It Complicated?

Client/server can be as simple as running two or three familiar programs on a
single PC or as intricate as a multiple-PC network running several
applications on each PC. The beauty of client/server model is that once you
understand the relationship between the different executable programs (the
clients and the server) you can set it up in any of several ways that best
meet your needs.

The client/server model of Annihilator above is a simple setup with the
server and all clients running on a single PC (inside the dotted line). The
computer can operate under Windows 95 or Windows NT Workstation or Server.
This configuration offers the most compact system and allows for total
management from the single BBS computer.

An alternative to operating all client executables on a single PC is to
distribute the processing over a Microsoft Network. The server executable
runs on a Windows NT (workstation or server) PC while the client modules can
be run on either the server PC or networked PCs running either Windows 95 or
Windows NT.  The advantage of separating some client operations from the
server is increased power through distributed processing.  For example, in an
extremely active system the sysop may find it advantageous to establish three
PCs, one for the Server and TCP/IP connectivity, including WWW access, and
two others, each running a rack of 32 modems with its own copy of the Modem
Controller Client.

Use of the client/server model provides a number of advantages:

˙ 32-bit Windows multitasking means no additional multitasking software is
  needed and 16-32 lines can be run easily without loading multiple copies of
  the BBS.

˙ The entire BBS configuration in our client/server model can be modified
  even while in full operation, but only by authorized personnel. The system
  server accepts change requests and implements them as soon as usage permits.

˙ The number of inbound sessions on a single computer is significantly
  increased. Thanks to the enhanced multitasking of both 32-bit Windows
  platforms, a much larger number of connections is possible on any given PC.
  As inbound access (via modem, telnet, HTTP, etc.) reaches the processor
  limits for any given PC, additional client PCs can be added which communicate
  automatically with the server. Clients for modems, HTTP, telnet and other
  activities can be operated on a single PC or on a variety of additional
  systems, depending on load.

˙ This new generation BBS can truly isolate the core of the host
  activities, providing secure, private system access even to local users. The
  server portion of the system is established in an area on disk with
  restricted user access.  The server controls all access to messages, files
  and other system information. Requests are submitted to the server by all
  support programs and third-party utilities through an easily adopted
  application program interface (API). This methodology has the added advantage
  of allowing the actual BBS program-flow code to be written in wcCODE and to
  be fully customizable.

True Client/server technology provides total flexibility.  It allows the
sysop to offer a BBS on a desktop platform and to expand the system
capabilities as desired.

Standard Annihilator Modules Included With Every BBS Create a Foundation

The following modules and clients come with the standard Annihilator Wildcat!
5 package.

Server module
This module provides the base functionality for processing all database and
configuration requests through a published API structure.

Local or LAN Client
This module is included with every package and is used by anyone connecting
at the host PC.  It can also be used by anyone on the network for local
login. It is an ANSI text connection. Note that the graphical Wildcat!
Navigator which is designed for remote connection also can be used locally
for a graphical local connection.

Online Client
This module is included with every package and answers the phone for all dial-
in lines. It can present the BBS information to a caller in ANSI, ASCII or in
full graphics when called with the free Wildcat! Navigator.

QWK Echo Client
This module is included with every package and handles QWK mail exchange
processing between the host and other BBSs.

TAPI Client
This module is included with every package and provides a link to the Windows
Telephony Application Program Interface.  It talks to TAPI-aware add-on cards
or hardware that offer ISDN, X.25 or other connectivity.

Wildcat! Navigator
This module is a set of freely-distributable Windows programs for callers to
experience full multimedia when connected.  This program suite operates on
Windows 3.1, Windows 95, Windows NT and any OS/2 release with Windows
support. It can also be run locally, over a LAN or via a telnet connection.
The core language of the Wildcat! Navigator is HTML, the language of the
World Wide Web.

Optional Annihilator Modules Increase Client/Server Power

The following modules are optional add-on accessories and are purchased
separately.

Internet Connectivity Package
This optional accessory package handles Internet connectivity and includes
several individual clients:
                                 UUCP Module
     This module handles Internet email and newsgroup support via UUCP. It
     includes a program for connecting to an internet service provider via
     dial or UUCPD, and tosses messages into the Wildcat! system. Callers can
     send and receive Internet email and participate in newsgroup message
     exchange. It also supports feeding messages to downline nodes.
     (available as part of the  initial release)
                                Telnet Module
     This module enables the Online Module to also answer inbound telnet
     callers. It connects callers to the BBS when they connect from a remote
     internet site. In this mode it acts as a telnet server. With the telnet
     module installed the BBS also supports outbound telnet sessions
     requested by callers, connecting them to other locations on the
     internet. In this mode the BBS acts as a telnet client for the caller.
     Inbound telnet connections support ANSI, ASCII and the Wildcat!
     Navigator interface. (available as part of the  initial release)
                                 FTP Module
     This module enables the Online Module to also answer FTP connection
     requests. It responds to inbound FTP file requests and functions as a
     FTP server. Requests can be made anonymously for a restricted file set,
     or using a name and password on the BBS for FTP access to files based on
     the caller's access profile. This module also allows callers to make FTP
     requests to locations outside the BBS. (available as part of the
     initial release)
                                 WWW Module
     This module functions as an HTTP proxy server that allows inbound
     callers using the Wildcat! Navigator to surf the World Wide Web.  It
     also supports inbound HTTP connections from callers using any browser,
     allowing them to view the BBS HTML screens. (available as part of the
     initial release)
                                 PPP Module
     This module allows callers to make a connection to the BBS with any
     Winsock layer to establish a path for true TCP/IP connectivity. With a
     PPP connection callers can run their choice of applications while
     connected to the net, including mail applications such as Eudora, other
     telnet clients, and browsers other than the Wildcat! Navigator, such as
     Netscape. (available as part of a maintenance update after initial
     release)
                             Dynamic HTML Module
     This module provides BBS connectivity to inbound callers connecting
     using a WWW browser. It functions as an HTTP server that dynamically
     creates HTML files for file and message data and is fed by a  set of
     display files in HTML format customized by the sysop. (available as part
     of a maintenance update after initial release)
                                SMTP  Module
     This module provides support for simple mail transfer protocol. It
     provides full management for sending and receiving internet email.
     (available as part of a maintenance update after initial release)
     
                                 IRC Module
This module provides a link to internet relay chat to expand the live
discussion capabilities of the BBS. It functions as an irc client for
callers.  Note that standard inter-node chat is supported without this
module.
                                 NNTP Module
This module provides support for network news transfer protocol messaging and
processes mail from an Internet NNTP server (many providers offer nntp mail
services). It provides the link to allow callers to read and reply to usenet
newsgroups.

Exchange Mail Client
This optional module provides a link to Microsoft Exchange using the Windows
Mail Application Program Interface.  It provides a mechanism to have both
email and conference mail be routed to Exchange on a local area network.

wcCODE Development Package
This optional package is a new, enhanced high-speed 32-bit development
language so powerful that all standard BBS functions are written in it. The
wcCODE package allows the sysop to create custom BBS operations and programs
to be run by the caller.

Source Code
For total customization of all online activity the wcCODE source for all BBS
functions is available for purchase. (Requires wcCODE)

Database Client
This optional module provides remote connectivity to database processing
using the ODBC standard, accessible via wcCODE applications.

Reports Client [wcPRO]
This optional module provides extensive reporting on BBS usage and
activities.

Billing Client [wcBILLING]
This optional module provides a complete billing for pre-pay or post-pay
systems.

How Do I Set Up a Client/Server BBS?

The configuration of Annihilator is very similar to the DOS Wildcat! BBS
except that all configuration programs are 32-bit graphic Windows
applications. Once you have run the installation and configuration programs
you maintain the BBS using other Windows applications that provide
functionality similar to the DOS Wildcat! MAKEMENU, MAKEWILD, MAKEQUES,
wcFILE, and other support programs.


How Do Callers Connect?

There are several methods for callers to connect to your Annihilator
(Wildcat! 5 ) BBS and several types of presentation:

˙    Dial-in modem callers using a standard comm package receive standard
  ANSI screens, just like WC4.
˙    Dial-in modem callers using the free Wildcat! Navigator package receive
  a full graphical HTML presentation. The BBS main "page" and all other
  informational pages such as bulletins, etc. are created by the sysop as HTML
  (www) documents using any HTML editor.  We expect to bundle an HTML authoring
  tool with the package.
˙    Telnet inbound connections using a standard telnet or comm package
  receive ANSI screens, just like WC4. (requires the Internet Connectivity
  Package)
˙    Telnet inbound connections using the Wildcat! Navigator receive a full
graphical HTML presentation.  (requires the Internet Connectivity Package)
˙    FTP inbound connection requests can log in as "guest" or "anonymous" for
  limited file access as set by the sysop, or can log in as a BBS user with the
  correct password for full file lists based on BBS access profiles. (requires
  the Internet Connectivity Package)
˙    HTTP inbound can be made using any browser (Netscape, Mosaic, etc.) and
will receive dynamically generated HTML pages for files and messages, with
other information and other "pages" prepared by the sysop as HTML documents.
(requires the Internet Connectivity Package with the Dynamic HTML Module,
expected in 2nd qtr '96).

What Internet Services Can I Offer?

If you add the Internet Connectivity Package your callers can make use of a
number of Internet services by dialing in using any ANSI terminal. By
connecting to you over a standard phone line they are able to establish an
internet email address, telnet to any other internet location, access files
via  ftp at any other location, and they can participate in internet
newsgroup discussions.  If they dial-in  using the free Wildcat! Navigator
they can do all the above plus surf the World Wide Web using the browser
included in the Navigator.

After the release of the additions to the Internet Connectivity Package
expected in 2nd quarter '96, callers can expand their Internet connectivity
to allow them full use of any internet applications they desire since you
will be able to provide them with a PPP connection.

What Hardware Will I Need?

Annihilator was designed to provide a platform for everything from a single
line BBS to a 1,000 line corporate connectivity server. The same set of
client/server modules are used in all installations.

For a simple one or two line BBS the easiest installation platform would be a
486/66 PC with 8 MB of memory running Windows 95. The standard communications
ports in the PC can be used and the sysop just needs to run the Server Module
and the Online Client.  Minimize these two programs on the desktop and your
BBS is operational.  To login locally you run the Wildcat! Navigator for a
full graphical BBS session.

As the BBS expands the sysop might add a multiport card from Digi, Comtrol,
Stallion, Equinox or any other manufacturer that offers Windows 95 or NT
support. A 4 or 16 port card can be installed in the same 486 PC to increase
line count and the only additional hardware changes might be to add
additional memory to 16 MB. The same Modem Client will handle the additional
lines with the installation of a line count increase module.

Further expansion of the BBS can be accomplished in many ways. As line count
increases the power of the PC can be increased to handle the added load by
moving to a Pentium 90-120 MHz CPU. With the technology available today it is
entirely possible to operate a single-box PC that can address hundreds of
incoming lines and other connections by taking advantage of the multi-
processor capabilities of the Windows NT platform.  Multiport cards from 16
to 128 ports are readily available for the NT platform.

For those that would rather make use of a LAN environment for BBS
connectivity the Annihilator project also has a solution. By using Windows NT
(Server or Workstation) the sysop can establish a server PC that handles the
core server duties and allows separate PCs to handle different aspects of the
remote connection. Each Client module can be operated on a networked PC
running Windows 95 or NT, and will communicate with the server PC
automatically. No messy drive mappings and no specific Networking components
are required, other than those that come with Windows NT (workstation or
server) and Windows 95. This type of distributed processing system really
make sense for large systems with several different types of access,
including local, TCP/IP, modem, X.25 and ISDN.  Different client processes
can be run on less-powerful PCs depending on their load.

What about Novell and LANtastic Networks?

Annihilator is totally compatible with NetWare or LANtastic. A workstation PC
on a LAN can run Windows 95 or Windows NT and operate the complete BBS. Other
LAN PCs can access the BBS using the Local/LAN client.

Although the BBS PC can access files located on the NetWare or LANtastic
server drives, all BBS server and client files must be located on PCs running
NT or 95 with the exception of the downloadable files, which can be located
anywhere on the LAN.  The same cabling for NetWare or LANtastic connectivity
(ethernet is assumed) is automatically used by the Windows networking to
share BBS client/server data using TCP/IP.

Can it Run Doors?

Annihilator supports DOS-based doors on all port connections, and includes a
program for DOS program redirection. However, operation of 16-bit DOS doors
does limit the number of lines that can be supported on any given PC.
Programs specifically written in the new 32-bit wcCODE are an exception, and
do not cause this system degradation.  Testing is the only method to
determine the actual impact of a specific DOS door on your Annihilator
system. Each DOS door affects system performance differently depending on the
language it was developed in and what resources it uses.

Doors under Windows NT

     Doors do not require any modification and operate in their own memory
     session for each node. Door operation is virtualized, a process that
     isolates the door itself from the port, and prevents it from knowing
     whether it is talking to a standard com port, a DigiBoard or a telnet
     connection.  All doors all think they are talking to a standard COM 1.
     For specifics on how to run doors, see Part 2 of this document.

Doors Under Windows 95

     Doors must be able to talk to the actual port in use for each node via
     DOS. Unless the door is written in wcCODE it will not be able to access
     multiport boards that use a Windows 95 driver. For specifics on how to
     run doors, see Part 2 of this document.
     

Release Information and Pricing

No specific release date has been set for project Annihilator, but the target
date is early 1996.  The majority of the program modules are expected to be
available in 1st quarter `96 but some optional modules will not become
available 2nd quarter or later.

The Wildcat! Navigator will be posted for download and wide-area testing in
January.  A patch upgrade to the wcSERVER component of the Preview CD ROM
will also be made available at that time to enable CD owners to make use of
the Wildcat! Navigator for their callers.
How to order Wildcat! 5 for Windows95/NT

To order or get more information on Wildcat! for Windows 95/NT, call the
Mustang Sales Office at 1-800-208-0615 or 1-805-873-2500. We encourage
Annihilator CD owners, currently registered Wildcat! Sysops and Sysops with
competitive products to call for limited-time, special pricing.

      Product          MSRP     Availability
 Wildcat! 5 M2 (two    $149    Initial Release
   node + local)
 Wildcat! 5 M16 (16    $349    Initial Release
       node)
 Wildcat! 5 M32 (32    $699    Initial Release
       node)
                                      
8 Pack Node Increase   $199    Initial Release
    32 Pack Node       $699    Initial Release
      Increase
                                      
      Internet         $249        Initial
Connectivity Package              Release*
     wcExchange        $499    Initial Release
 wcCODE Development    $149    Initial Release
      Language
 wcSource Plus Pack    $349    Initial Release
 HoTMetal Pro with     $129    Initial Release
    Metal Works
                                      
  Platinum Support     $199    Initial Release
        Plan
  Auto Update Plan     $149    Initial Release
       If paying       34.95   Initial Release
  monthly, first 3
       months
       If paying       12.95   Initial Release
monthly, additional
       months
    1 year (paid in    $149    Initial Release
      advance)
   2 years (paid in    $275    Initial Release
      advance)
                                      
ODBC Database Client   $799    Second Quarter
  wcReports Client     $149    Second Quarter
  wcBilling Client     $149    Second Quarter
    wcSubscribe         $99    Second Quarter
                                      
* Portions of this product will be added following the initial release, see
previous text for details.
MSRP - Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price

What are the Plans for the DOS Version of Wildcat!?

The current DOS version of Wildcat! will continue to be supported and updated
by its own separate team of engineers.  We have no current plans for a native
OS/2 BBS system and do not anticipate such development in the foreseeable
future.

  
TrueType Fonts for the WEB STR Focus


                                      
                 Microsoft Extends TrueType Fonts to the Web
                          Enabling Richer Web Pages

For Release 6 a.m. EST

27 February 1996

Forty Industry Leaders Including Hewlett-Packard, Macromedia and Oracle
Support Solution Based on Industry-Standard TrueType Technology

BOSTON  -  Feb. 27, 1996 - Microsoft Corp. today announced that its TrueTyper
font  technology has been extended to the World Wide Web, allowing  designers
to  create  great-looking Web pages that consumers can view -  even  if  they
haven't bought the specific typefaces for their PCs. Forty industry leaders -
including  Hewlett-Packard  Company,  Macromedia  and  Oracle  Corp.  -  have
announced  support  for  the  Microsoftr solution.  The  TrueType-for-the-Web
solution  will include a core set of no-charge fonts designed for superb  on-
screen  appearance  and  readability;  embedding  technology  that  downloads
TrueType  fonts  to consumer PCs as needed; and a royalty-free cross-platform
licensing program for Microsoft's high-performance TrueType rasterizer, which
allows all platforms to support TrueType technology.

"For  too long, Web designers were free to use any font - as long as  it  was
Times,"  said Brad Silverberg, senior vice president of the Internet platform
and  tools division at Microsoft. "Web designers have been demanding the same
typographic  flexibility on the Web as they have in print  and  in  other  PC
applications. By extending the industry-standard TrueType technology  to  the
Web,  we have combined the best of Windowsr with the best of the Internet  to
unleash  a new generation of dazzling creativity, style and individuality  on
Web  pages that will make the Internet a more attractive and compelling place
to be."

Microsoft Builds on Font Expertise to Offer Complete, Cross-Platform Solution
for Web
Today,  most Web designers who want attractive typefaces are forced  to  turn
their  type  into bitmapped graphics that are memory-intensive, take  a  long
time  to  download, cannot be updated easily, cannot be resized by the  user,
and  are  invisible to search engines looking for text. By extending TrueType
to  the Web, Microsoft will expand the typographic options for Web designers.
TrueType  is already integrated into the Microsoft Windows 3.1, Windowsr  for
Workgroups,  Windowsr 95 and Windows NT TM operating systems as well  as  the
Appler Macintoshr, making it the most-used font technology in the world, with
over  3  billion TrueType fonts shipped. Unlike other font technologies  that
optimize type for the printed page at the expense of the screen, anti-aliased
TrueType fonts provide the highest-quality text on screen as well as  on  the
printed page.

"TrueType  is  the best solution for type on the screen," said  Roger  Black,
president of Interactive Bureau. "Microsoft's new set of fonts gives people a
better  way to read the billions of words available on the Internet, and  the
font-embedding  technology allows content providers to show  their  sites  in
their  own  chosen  typefaces. It's like getting to  wear  your  own  clothes
instead of a uniform."

"Microsoft's  TrueType  and  anti-aliasing  technologies  give  everyone  the
opportunity to use and experience better fonts," said David Siegel, president
of   v  e r s o. "This technology will take the quality of on-screen type  up
two full notches."

Also,  TrueType  technology can be supported on all computer  platforms  with
Microsoft's high-performance TrueType rasterizer, which extends the  TrueType
solution  to  platforms,  such as UNIXr, that  do  not  already  support  the
technology. Hewlett-Packard is the first to announce that it will license the
TrueType  rasterizer, for implementation on HP-UXr, and will  distribute  the
core set of fonts to HP-UX users. The TrueType rasterizer is already shipping
with HPr printers and HP personal computers.

"The  licensing of this technology means that the same set of fonts and  font
technology  will  now be available across the entire HP product  line,"  said
Richard  (Dick) C. Watts, vice president and general manager of the  computer
systems organization at Hewlett-Packard. "For document authors, these  common
fonts   and  font  technology  will  provide  enterprisewide  sharing  across
heterogeneous environments."

TrueType  Font-Embedding Technology Enables Faster Download, More  Functional
Web Pages
With  TrueType font-embedding technology, Web designers and users can  access
high-quality  fonts without having to download entire font files  across  the
Internet.  Authoring  tools  will provide the option  to  download  only  the
characters  used,  saving bandwidth and enabling pages  to  download  faster.
Users  can  view  Web sites as intended by the designer,  without  having  to
purchase special font software. In addition, a font manufacturer can  specify
an embedded font as read-only, for viewing and printing; editable within that
particular  document;  or fully installable, therefore  helping  protect  the
intellectual  property of font designers. The technology will be incorporated
into   Microsoft  Internet  Explorer  and  Microsoft  authoring  tools  later
this year.

"The ability to embed TrueType fonts creates a clear market for fonts on  the
Web,"  said  David  Berlow,  president of The Font  Bureau.  "It  allows  Web
publishers  to  buy  and include read-only fonts in their Web  sites  without
licensing  hassles.  It  gives readers the quality  of  well-hinted  TrueType
fonts, and gives font publishers protection, with read-only embedding. It's a
win for everyone concerned."

TrueType Fonts and Technology Broadly Available
Microsoft  will  make  available to developers a  core  set  of  world-class,
royalty-free  TrueType fonts designed to look good on computer screens.  They
include  fonts developed by Matthew Carter, one of the world's  premier  font
designers.  The first set of TrueType fonts designed for the Web is  expected
to  be  available this quarter from the  (http://www.microsoft.com/truetype).
Any  Internet browser that implements the proposed hypertext markup  language
(HTML)  stylesheet standard from the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) can  use
these core fonts immediately.

Microsoft will submit the technology for embedding TrueType fonts to W3C as a
proposed specification to support the W3C's efforts to define stylesheets,  a
standard  graphic design language for HTML. Microsoft has been  working  with
W3C and its members on HTML stylesheets since last fall.

Microsoft  will also freely license the technology for downloading  fonts  to
developers of browsers, authoring tools and other applications, enabling  the
thousands of TrueType fonts already on the market to be used on the Web.

Broad Industry Support
Web site and font designers, publishers, software developers and hardware
manufacturers supporting TrueType for the Web technology include:
AGENCY.COM, Chan Suh or Kyle Shannon, (212) 522-6882
Agfa Division, Bayer Corp., Greg Porell, (508) 658-0200 ext. 2015
Atomic Vision Inc., Jennifer Petersen, (415) 522-5542
Benjamin Graphics, Frank Campanaro, (805) 642-9080
Blue Hypermedia Inc., Timothy Roven, (212) 995-2096
Carter & Cone Type Inc., Matthew Carter, (617) 576-0398
Cerebral Systems Development Corp., Leslie Owens, (416) 651-6818
Ethos Corp./Investors Edge, Patrick Connolly, (415) 389-4799
FontHaus Inc., Andrew Schwartz, (203) 367-1993
Font Shop, Bruno Schmidt, +49 (30) 69579200
Galápagos Design Group Inc., Larry Oppenberg, (508) 952-6200
Garagefonts, Betsy Kopshina, (619) 755-4761 or (619) 755-3913
Glyph Systems, Steven Reef, (508) 557-9001
Hewlett-Packard Company, Gary McCormack, (970) 229-2370
House Industries, Rich Roat, (302) 888-1218
InContext Corp., Marianne Kupina, (416) 922-0087
Interactive Bureau, Michael Kaminer, (212) 627-8098
Lanston Type Company Ltd., Gerald Giampa, (902) 676-2835
Macromedia, Mary Leong, (415) 252-2118
Meta Design, Bruno Schmidt, +49 (30) 69579200
Micrografx, Margaret Turbeville, (214) 994-6288
Monotype Typography Inc., Steve Kuhlman, (312) 855-1440
NCSA Mosaic, Briand Sanderson, (217) 244-7404
NetManage, Donna Loughlin, (408) 973-7171
Oracle Corp., Jennifer Keavney, (415) 506-3429
Projective Solutions Inc., Henry Pinkham, (212) 678-6595
QMS Inc., Robson Grieve, (415) 363-0982
s.a.x. software GmbH, Aurel Chauane deDalmassy, +49 (72) 1490020
SoftQuad, Lucy Ventresca or Linda Hazzan, (416) 239-4801
Spyglass Inc., Randy Pitzer, (217) 355-6000
Starwave Corp., Rebecca Levy, (206) 637-9097
Sub Pop Advanced Media, Ian Dickson, (206) 441-8441
The Font Bureau, David Berlow, (508) 627-9042
Treacyfaces Inc., Joseph Treacy, (203) 389-7037
TypeHaus Inc., Bill Bailey, (214) 690-1770
Type Solutions Inc., Sampo Kaasila, (603) 382-6400
URW America, Henry Mikiewicz, (603) 664-2130
(URW) ++ Design & Development GmbH, Gerald Gabriel, +49 (40) 606050
US News & World Report, Bruce Zanca, (202) 955-2578
Visio Corp., Morgan Brown, (206) 521-4449

Founded  in  1975,  Microsoft  (NASDAQ "MSFT") 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.

Microsoft,  Windows,  and  Windows  NT are either  registered  trademarks  or
trademarks  of  Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other  countries.
Apple,  TrueType  and Macintosh are registered trademarks of  Apple  Computer
Inc.   UNIX  is  a  registered  trademark in  the  United  States  and  other
countries, licensed exclusively through X/Open Company Ltd.  HP and HP-UX are
registered trademarks of Hewlett-Packard Co.


Fonts for the WEB STR InfoFile


                      Core fonts for the World Wide Web

Microsoft Internet Explorer supports the  extension to HTML that
lets Web page designers choose which fonts should be used in their on-line
documents.

However, it has been difficult for authors to fully exploit this feature, as
they can not be sure which fonts a Microsoft Internet Explorer user will have
installed on their system.  This is where the Internet Explorer Font Pack
will come in. The pack will provide a range of high quality TrueType fonts
which Internet Explorer users can download and install free of charge. Web
page designers can specify these fonts for use with their pages in the
knowledge they are freely available to any Microsoft Internet Explorer user.

Unlike bulky bitmap fonts supplied as GIF graphics, the "hinted" TrueType
fonts included with the pack are fully scaleable, so they are extremely
legible on screen and do not become distorted or jagged when output on high
resolution laser and inkjet printers.



Discussion Summary


Summary
The last thing the world needs is yet another font format for the World Wide
Web, especially since one exists today which is already available on the vast
majority of Web clients, could easily be made to run on all systems, has had
hundreds of man-years of development, was specifically designed for high-
quality screen display, and in which thousands of typefaces have already been
produced to support a huge range of languages from English and Cyrillic to
Japanese, Thai, Simplified Chinese, Arabic and Hebrew.

TrueType. It already ships on every single Windows and Macintosh computer,
and will appear on other systems.

TrueType was designed from the outset for high-quality screen display, and
can be hinted to give screen text of unsurpassed quality. A core set of fonts
already ships on every single Macintosh and Windows machine, and this core
set could be easily extended. Under Windows, TrueType can be anti-aliased "on
the fly", giving all the visual benefits of anti-aliased bitmaps without
sacrificing the portability, editability and other advantages of keeping
content in raw HTML text.

TrueType is an outline format, already well-understood by all of the font
manufacturers, and thus resolution-independent and infinitely scalable. It
carries no royalty to either Microsoft or Apple.  It is easily embeddable in
documents, while still protecting the Intellectual Property Rights of the
font vendor. The embedding process was agreed by all the major font vendors
in 1992 at a Windows Open Services Architecture (WOSA) review, and gives four
levels of embedding: read-only (print & preview), editable, fully installable
and do not embed. Fully installable allows fonts to be distributed and
installed freely when required. This functionality exists on both Microsoft
Windows and the Apple Macintosh today. Development work is part of our cross-
platform development strategy for our own applications such as Microsoft Word
and PowerPoint. Microsoft will license TrueType to developers of other
platforms as well.  Fonts are rapidly becoming one of the hottest topics on
the Web. As Web page design becomes more and more like the design of
conventional magazine pages, designers want to have the same level of access
to fonts as they have today for print publishing.

A great deal of misinformation is being disseminated by groups and companies
whose agenda is to push their own products.  Issues have been raised
regarding portability of documents and fonts, rendering at screen
resolutions, character encoding, anti-aliasing, and more. Fortunately, the
font industry has already developed and standardized solutions addressing
many of these issues.

Microsoft believes that the logical choice for a font format for the Web is
TrueType, for the following reasons:

˙    It is a scalable outline font format that allows screen rendition and
     printing at any size.
˙    It was designed from the outset for better screen readability, and can
     be hinted to give superior screen quality at the low resolution of monitors.
˙    Thousands of fonts already exist in the marketplace, including core
     fonts on both Windows and Macintosh in a huge number of languages, and many
     of them have been hinted for excellent screen quality.
˙    The tools and expertise needed to make it are already in place in the
     font industry.
˙    It is free of royalties to either Microsoft or Apple.
˙    Technologies for embedding fonts within documents already exist and can
     be extended to cover Web documents.

With a minimum amount of development work, TrueType can support all Web
authoring/browsing needs.


Future developments

As part of Microsoft's commitment to the Internet, we plan to:

˙    Assemble a set of high-quality multiple-language, Web Fonts.
˙    Work with browser manufacturers and Operating System vendors to help
    implement TrueType on Unix browsers in addition to the current Macintosh and
     Windows platforms.
˙    Continue to develop solutions for font embedding, compression etc. in
     collaboration with font vendors, operating systems manufacturers, and
     Independent Software Vendors.



Microsoft's strategies


               TrueType fonts, browsers, and operating systems

The TrueType fonts a user sees on Web pages result from the interaction
between the operating system, font files, the browser, and the HTML source.
Web font solutions may have engineering ramifications at many levels.

˙    Operating system - handles rasterization, scaling, anti-aliasing,
     hinting and installation.
˙    Font - contains outline and hinting information.
˙    Browser - allows user to control relative font sizes and default faces.
˙    HTML source - may contain font face and size information.



The TrueType font file format
TrueType was designed to address the many issues surrounding on-screen
display of text. The TrueType Font File Format is well-established and
currently supported by the bulk of Web clients.  The TrueType Font File
Format is a publicly-available font specification and fonts can be created
with no royalties due to either Apple or Microsoft. There are several mass-
market tools for creating TrueType fonts, and there are well-developed
specialty tools available to higher-end font developers.

Thousands of TrueType fonts exist, including many free. Core sets of fonts
exist on both Macintosh and Windows platforms, allowing users certainty that
common fonts will exist on client machines.  For more information on the
TrueType Font File Format, see our Introduction to TrueType. TrueType
specification documents may be accessed from our Specifications page.

TrueType Open
TrueType Open is an extension to the TrueType font standard. TrueType Open
fonts contain additional information that extends the capabilities of the
fonts to support high-quality international typography:

˙    TrueType Open can associate a single character with multiple glyphs, and
     - conversely - it can associate combinations of characters with a
     single glyph.
˙    TrueType Open includes two-dimensional information to support features
     for complex positioning and glyph attachment. TrueType Open contains explicit
     script and language information, so a text-processing application can adjust
     its behavior accordingly.
˙    TrueType Open has an open format that allows font developers to define
     their own typographical features.


The rasterizer
The TrueType Rasterizer is built into Windows 95, Windows NT, the Macintosh,
and a variety of printer hardware. The Rasterizer is extremely stable,
efficient, and well-tested. The TrueType Rasterizer can be licensed for use
on other operating systems or within applications.

Core fonts for the Web
Microsoft currently ships a selection of common fonts as "Core Windows
Fonts." (For a list of fonts supplied with Windows 95, the Plus! pack and
Microsoft Office please see our Popular fonts list.) Knowing that these fonts
are available under Windows on any machine allows users more certainty in the
portability of their documents. Microsoft is enlarging the set of core fonts
to include on-line and Web-related fonts, thus avoiding issues of embedding
or downloading for common documents. This set of core fonts will contain
large international character sets, and virtually guarantee that users can
view text on any Web page in the world.


Hinting
Quality hinting is essential to ensure the readability of text on screen.
TrueType fonts can be hinted to higher standards than other font formats
because the TrueType instruction set is so rich and powerful. To ensure the
availability of well-hinted TrueType fonts, Microsoft and others have created
TrueType hinting tools that are available under license.


The above examples show hinted and unhinted text. On the left an example of
unhinted text. On the right an example of hinted text where stroke weight is
consistent, diagonals and curves are controlled, and the overall effect is
much more appealing than the example at left.

Anti-Aliasing / grayscaling / font smoothing
Microsoft has built anti-aliasing into the Windows 95 operating system (and
soon into Windows NT). ANY TrueType font can be anti-aliased on-the-fly in
Windows 95. Font vendors can put information into TrueType fonts controlling
the size ranges at which anti-aliasing occurs. Users can turn anti-aliasing
on or off.


The above examples show a passage of text, before and after smoothing is
switched on.

Embedding fonts
TrueType embedding technology has already received approval during a Windows
Open Services Architecture review by major font vendors. In fact, TrueType
pioneered font embedding and the industry has been supportive of these
embedding methods. Font vendors can specify several levels of distribution
and use within a font file, and the operating system and applications legally
mediate license protection. Subsetting and core Web fonts can provide good
solutions to the problem of downloading and embedding large fonts.

Unicode
The TrueType Font Format has supported Unicode from the start. Unicode
encoding provides the only means of unambiguously identifying characters,
especially across different fonts. Windows and NT support Unicode. Apple has
stated that Unicode will be supported in the next generation of Mac
system software.

Specifying fonts and sizes in Web documents
Microsoft supports a strategy allowing designers to specify fonts and size
ranges, but also allowing users to override designer choices. The Microsoft
Internet Explorer allows HTML authors to specify font face and font size
using the  and   tags.

Font naming and mapping
To help mediate font naming conflicts and assist the operating system (or
application) in mapping fonts appropriately, TrueType fonts contain
information that identifies vendor ID, PANOSE information, and character
sets. Font vendors are responsible for making their font names unique. An
operating system can legally contain tables that map copyrighted font names
to alternate fonts.


                          Welcome to TrueType Open

TrueType Open is an extension to the TrueType font standard. TrueType Open
fonts contain additional information that extends the capabilities of the
fonts to support high-quality international typography:

˙    TrueType Open can associate a single character with multiple glyphs, and
  - conversely - it can associate combinations of characters with a
  single glyph.
˙    TrueType Open includes two-dimensional information to support features
  for complex positioning and glyph attachment. TrueType Open contains explicit
  script and language information, so a text-processing application can adjust
  its behavior accordingly.
˙    TrueType Open has an open format that allows font developers to define
  their own typographical features.

This overview introduces the power and flexibility of the TrueType Open font
model. The rest of the document describes the TrueType Open components in
technical detail that will be useful to font vendors and software developers
creating TrueType fonts and the text-processing applications that use them.

TrueType Open at a glance
TrueType Open addresses complex typographical issues that especially affect
people using text-processing applications in multi-lingual and non-Latin
environments.   TrueType Open fonts may contain alternative forms of
characters and mechanisms for accessing them. For example, in Arabic, the
shape of a character often varies with the character's position in a word. As
shown here, the ha character will take any of four shapes, depending on
whether it stands alone or whether it falls at the beginning, middle, or end
of a word. TrueType Open helps a text-processing application determine which
variant to substitute when composing text.
                                      
Figure 1a Isolated, initial, medial, and final forms of the Arabic
character ha.

Similarly, TrueType Open helps an application use the correct forms of
characters when text is positioned vertically instead of horizontally, such
as with Kanji. For example, Kanji uses alternative forms of parentheses when
positioned vertically.


Figure 1b Alternative forms of parentheses used when positioning Kanji
vertically.

The TrueType Open font format also supports the composition and decomposition
of ligatures. For example, English, French, and other languages based on
Latin can substitute a single ligature, such as "fi", for its component
glyphs - in this case, "f" and "i". Conversely, the individual "f" and "i"
glyphs could replace the ligature, possibly to give a text-processing
application more flexibility when spacing glyphs to fill a line of
justified text.

Figure 1c Two Latin glyphs and their associated ligature.

Figure 1d Three Arabic glyphs and their associated ligature.

Glyph substitution is just one way TrueType Open extends font capabilities.
Using precise X and Y coordinates for positioning glyphs, TrueType Open fonts
also can identify points for attaching one glyph to another to create cursive
text and glyphs that need diacritical or other special marks.  TrueType Open
fonts also may contain baseline information that specifies how to position
glyphs horizontally or vertically. Because baselines may vary from one script
(set of characters) to another, this information is especially useful for
aligning text that mixes glyphs from scripts for different languages.

Figure 1e A line of text, baselines adjusted, mixing Latin and
Arabic scripts.


TrueType versus TrueType Open
A TrueType font is a collection of several tables that contain different
types of data: glyph outlines, metrics, bitmaps, mapping information, and
much more. TrueType Open fonts contain all this basic information, plus
additional tables containing information for advanced typography.  Text-
processing applications - referred to as "clients" of TrueType Open - can
retrieve and parse the information in TrueType Open tables. So, for example,
a text-processing client can choose the correct character shapes and space
them properly.

As much as possible, the tables of TrueType Open define only the information
that is specific to the font layout. The tables do not try to encode
information that remains constant within the conventions of a particular
language or the typography of a particular script. Such information that
would be replicated across all fonts in a given language belongs in the text-
processing application for that language, not in the fonts.

TrueType Open terminology
The TrueType Open model is organized around glyphs, scripts, language
systems, and features.

Characters versus glyphs
Users don't view or print characters: a user views or prints glyphs. A glyph
is a representation of a character. The character "capital letter A" is
represented by the glyph "A" in Times New Roman Bold and "A" in Arial Bold. A
TrueType font is a collection of glyphs. To retrieve glyphs, the client uses
information in the "cmap" table of the font, which maps the client's
character codes to glyph indices in the table.

Glyphs can also represent combinations of characters and alternative forms of
characters: glyphs and characters do not strictly correspond one-to-one. For
example, a user might type two characters, which might be better represented
with a single ligature glyph. Conversely, the same character might take
different forms at the beginning, middle, or end of a word, so a font would
need several different glyphs to represent a single character. TrueType Open
fonts contain a table that provides a client with information about possible
glyph substitutions.


Figure 1f Multiple glyphs for the ampersand character.

Scripts
A script is composed of a group of related characters, which may be used by
one or more languages. Latin, Arabic, and Thai are examples of scripts. A
font may use a single script, or it may use many scripts. Within a TrueType
Open font, scripts are identified by unique 4-byte tags.

Figure 1g Glyphs in the Latin, Kanji, and Arabic scripts.

Language systems
Scripts, in turn, may be divided into language systems. For example, the
Latin script is used to write English, French, or German, but each language
has its own special requirements for text processing. A font developer can
choose to provide information that is tailored to the script, to the language
system, or to both.

Language systems, unlike scripts, are not necessarily evident when a text-
processing client examines the characters being used. To avoid ambiguity, the
user or the operating system needs to identify the language system.
Otherwise, the client will use the default language-system information
provided with each script.

Figure 1h Differences in the English, French, and German language system.

Features
Features define the basic functionality of the font. A font that contains
tables to handle diacritical marks will have a "mark" feature. A font that
supports substitution of vertical glyphs will have a "vert"  feature.

The TrueType Open feature model provides great flexibility to font developers
because features do not have to be predefined by Microsoft Corporation.
Instead, font developers can work with application developers to determine
useful features for fonts, add such features to TrueType Open fonts, and
enable client applications to support such features.


Figure 1i The relationship of scripts, language systems, features, and
lookups for substitution and positioning tables.

TrueType Open tables
TrueType Open comprises five new tables: GSUB, GPOS, BASE, JSTF, and GDEF.
These tables and their formats are discussed in detail in the chapters that
follow this overview.

GSUB: Contains information about glyph substitutions to handle single glyph
substitution, one-to-many substitution (ligature decomposition), aesthetic
alternatives, multiple glyph substitution (ligatures), and contextual glyph
substitution.

GPOS: Contains information about X and Y positioning of glyphs to handle
single glyph adjustment, adjustment of paired glyphs, cursive attachment,
mark attachment, and contextual glyph positioning.

BASE: Contains information about baseline offsets on a script-by-script
basis.

JSTF: Contains justification information, including whitespace and Kashida
adjustments.

GDEF: Contains information about all individual glyphs in the font: type
(simple glyph, ligature, or combining mark), attachment points (if any), and
ligature caret (if a ligature glyph).

Text processing with TrueType Open fonts
A text-processing client follows a standard process to convert the string of
characters entered by a user into positioned glyphs. To produce text with
TrueType Open fonts:

1.   Using the cmap table in the font, the client converts the character
  codes into a string of glyph indices.
2.   Using information in the GSUB table, the client modifies the resulting
  string, substituting positional or vertical glyphs, ligatures, or other
  alternatives as appropriate.
3.   Using positioning information in the GPOS table and baseline offset
information in the BASE table, the client then positions the glyphs.
4.   Using design coordinates the client determines device-independent line
breaks. Design coordinates are high-resolution and device-independent.
5.   Using information in the JSTF table, the client justifies the lines, if
  the user has specified such alignment.
6.   The operating system rasterizes the line of glyphs and renders the
  glyphs in device coordinates that correspond to the resolution of the
  output device.

Throughout this process the text-processing client keeps track of the
association between the character codes for the original text and the glyph
indices of the final, rendered text. In addition, the client may save
language and script information within the text stream to clearly associate
character codes with typographical behavior.

TrueType Open fonts in Windows 95
The core system fonts in the Middle East and Far East versions of Windows 95
are TrueType Open fonts. These fonts demonstrate aspects of TrueType Open's
versatility.

Middle East Windows 95
Middle East Windows 95 uses several Arabic TrueType Open fonts: fixed regular
weight, proportional regular weight, fixed bold, and proportional bold. These
fonts take advantage of many glyph substitution features available in
TrueType Open, namely simple substitution (one-to-one contextual), ligature
substitution (many-to-one), and mark set substitutions. In Middle East
Windows 95, the operating system itself handles glyph substitution, using
data in the GSUB table of each font.

Far East Windows 95
Far East Windows 95 also uses several TrueType Open fonts: fixed serif,
proportional serif, fixed sans serif, and proportional sans serif. The
Japanese fonts take advantage of a subset of TrueType Open features,
including vertical glyph substitution and baseline positioning. As with
Middle East Windows 95, the operating system in Far East Windows 95 will
handle glyph substitution, using data in the GSUB table in each font.
However, the text-processing client will need to handle baseline positioning,
using data in the BASE table in each font.

Frequently asked questions

Q Is TrueType Open a new font format?
A No. TrueType Open fonts are TrueType fonts with extensions. TrueType Open
introduces new table structures that contain additional typographical data.

Q To ensure compatibility, do I need to revise all my fonts to be TrueType
Open fonts?
A No. TrueType fonts that do not contain TrueType Open information are still
valid fonts. A client can determine which, if any, TrueType Open features a
font contains and make decisions accordingly.

Q Can I use TrueType Open fonts on Windows 3.1x?
A Yes. Because the basic TrueType font format has not changed, TrueType Open
fonts can be used by operating systems and applications that support TrueType
but do not implement TrueType Open functionality.

Q Which TrueType Open features are supported by Windows 95?
A A text-processing client can access all TrueType Open tables by using the
GetFontData API and requesting a TrueType Open table by name. The client is
responsible for placing text appropriately according to the information
retrieved.
Q Is Microsoft developing tools for creating TrueType Open fonts?
A Microsoft is working with Independent Software Vendors (ISV's) to enhance
their font development tools to handle TrueType Open information. Internally,
Microsoft uses a proprietary tool for assembling TrueType Open binary tables
from TrueType Open data in text format.

Q What is the difference between Apple's TrueType GX and Microsoft's TrueType
Open?
A TrueType Open and TrueType GX address some of the same issues, especially
those arising from one-to-one relationships between characters and glyphs.
However, TrueType Open has a richer two-dimensional positioning model than
TrueType GX. TrueType Open also contains explicit script and language
support, so a text-processing application can adjust its behavior
accordingly.

Another major difference between the two font formats is that TrueType GX
fonts contain "state machines," which choose and position glyphs. This format
requires that clients follow a particular model of text processing, and
TrueType GX fonts are difficult for a client to decode. In comparison,
TrueType Open fonts are simple to read and support clients in making their
own decisions regarding text processing.

Q When will the TrueType Open Font Specification be finalized?
A The TrueType Open font format is essentially final. The specification will
be enhanced during the next few months to include more examples and
illustrative art. The specification for TrueType Open System Services will be
available at the end of 1995.





            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

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            A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N-A T T E N T I O N



EDUPAGE STR Focus    Keeping the users informed




                                   Edupage
Contents

Compaq And Packard Bell Settle
Lawsuit
Wisconsin Gov. Wants To Get Wired
Silicon Graphics Planning To Buy
Cray Research
Tax Man Targets Cyberspace
IBM Developing Low-Cost PC Devices,
Agrees To Buy Object Technology
HP Buys Internet Security Firm
High-Tech Superfund
Obstacles To Digital TV
Computer Arts
University Online
Cashless Society To Cost Governments
The Cost Of Dawdling
Porn Distributor Nets Five Years In
Prison
Plug And Play Together
Artificial-Life Simulation Software
Fun And Taxes On WWW
Oracular Pronouncement
Challenge To Communications Decency
Act
Court Upholds Software Copyright
Protection
Congress Tackles Encryption Issue
Motorola, Sun Shoot For High-Speed
Access
AT&T To Offer Internet Access
Picture Phone Makers Target Desktop
Video
Networked Schools Up 35%
Defamation Liability Knows No Bounds
Cheaper Chips Could Spell Trouble
For Japan
Investors Trade Shares On Line
Newspapers Caught By The Web
Paychecks Sweetened At IBM
Offshore Programming
AT&T Internet Offer Leverages On
"Free" Local Access
AOL Offers Connections To U.K.
Secondary
$500 Box Doesn't Worry Andy Grove
AT&T Abandons Network Notes
General Magic Conjures Up Payment
Software
HP Offers Multimedia PCs With Built-
In Scanners
Librarians At Odds Over Charging For
Access
No Safety On The Net
These Chips Keep Their Cool
Micron Backpedals On $2.5-Billion
Chip Factory
Thomson Buys West Publishing
Self-Patrolling The Web
Phone Company Buys Cable Business



                   COMPAQ AND PACKARD BELL SETTLE LAWSUIT
Compaq and Packard Bell have settled the legal actions begun after Compaq
accused Packard Bell of obtaining a  competitive advantage by including used
parts in computers sold as new.  One of the attorneys said the lawsuit was
dropped because of the likelihood that state and federal regulators would
soon force computer companies to disclose when  a new machine includes
recycled parts.  (Houston Chronicle 24 Feb 96 1C)

                      WISCONSIN GOV. WANTS TO GET WIRED
The governor of Wisconsin used his annual State of the State address to
present plans for a $10-million project to link all  26 public university
campuses in the state via computer, and to begin offering high school classes
online by 1997.  The  University of Wisconsin system already offers Advanced
Placement courses in mathematics and engineering via the  Internet, as well
as nursing courses to adult learners.  (Chronicle of Higher Education 23 Feb
96 A21)

               SILICON GRAPHICS PLANNING TO BUY CRAY RESEARCH
Silicon Graphics is expected to announce that it is acquiring supercomputer
maker Cray Research, a company whose  fortunes have declined as a result of
lower sales to the federal government and stiff competition from companies
such as Silicon Graphics.  (New York Times 24 Feb 96 p18)

                         TAX MAN TARGETS CYBERSPACE
The Nova Scotia government announced the province's 11% sales tax will be
applied to Internet services, including flat  monthly charges, time charges
and registration, effective March 1. (Toronto Globe & Mail 23 Feb 96 B3)

                     IBM DEVELOPING LOW-COST PC DEVICES
                       AGREES TO BUY OJECT TECHNOLOGY
IBM is developing prototype set-top boxes that will both carry cable signals
and offer Internet access.  "We have  prototypes and concepts that we're
working on from the low-end consumer side of the business all the way to the
commercial side," says VP "Ozzie" Osborne, who envisions a consumer appliance
that's "hassle-free."  The new devices  will emphasize practical applications
such as home banking and shopping, in addition to entertainment functions,
such as  game playing.  (Broadcasting & Cable 19 Feb 96 p60) Meanwhile, IBM
has announced its intention to acquire Object  Technology International Inc.,
a maker of object-oriented software.  The company says its decision will
speed up its  efforts to build object-oriented products, making software
development easier, faster and cheaper.  (Investor's Business Daily 24 Feb 96
A7)

                       HP BUYS INTERNET SECURITY FIRM
Hewlett-Packard has purchased most of the assets of SecureWare Inc., a maker
of security software.  SecureWare's  technology is used by the Pentagon to
encrypt transmission of classified military secrets, and has been used in
various  products made by HP, IBM and Sun Microsystems.  SecureWare's team of
about 40 programmers is considered one of  the most advanced groups in the
field of encryption technology.  "These are a substantial fraction of the
hired guns  available in the online security world," says an industry
consultant.  SecureWare's "trusted operating system" imposes an  additional
layer of hacker-proof security on existing firewalls and more conventional
measures.  (Wall Street Journal 24 Feb 96 B2)

                             HIGH-TECH SUPERFUND
Canada is about to create "high-tech superfund" aimed at creating high
quality, high paying jobs and developing new  technologies and products, not
as a subsidy but a partnership between business and government.  The total
amount of  funding remains unknown at this time.  (Toronto Sun 22 Feb 96 p33)

                           OBSTACLES TO DIGITAL TV
The head of a Canadian task force on digital TV in Canada warns that such
advances could be jeopardized if industry  players, including cable and phone
companies, satellite service providers, equipment manufacturers, and
broadcasters, do  not agree on standardizing equipment as a mutual advantage
and continue to divert resources away from the programs  consumers want by
spending money on incompatible technologies.  (Ottawa Citizen 22 Feb 96 D13)

                                COMPUTER ARTS
Prix Ars Electronica 96, an international competition for computer arts,
organized by the ORF - Austrian Broadcasting  Corporation, will award prizes
totaling $125,000 in four categories:  WWW sites, Computer Animation,
Computer Music and Interactive Art:  < http://prixars.orf.at >

                              UNIVERSITY ONLINE
University Online, a small Internet publisher that licenses 200 ready-made
high school and college courses, is working  with George Washington and
George Mason Universities to create tutorials and more online courses at the
higher  education level, and is seeking more universities for similar
alliances.  The company's president is working with textbook  publishers to
obtain the electronic rights to their materials, and will then pay the
publishers' royalties and split the tuition  with the universities that
license its products.  (Wall Street Journal 24 Feb 96 B5D)

                    CASHLESS SOCIETY TO COST GOVERNMENTS
A report prepared for the Bank of Canada says that the advent of the cashless
society could cost the federal government  hundreds of millions of dollars
annually through a drop in the use of coins and bank notes that generate
monopoly  royalties for the central bank.  (Toronto Financial Post 21 Feb 96
p1)

                            THE COST OF DAWDLING
An econometric study issued last year by the WEFA Group estimates that the
cost of delaying implementation of the  telecommunications reform bill by
three years will cost 1.54 million new jobs, and about $1.4-billion in gross
domestic  product.  In other words, "Each month the FCC dithers around
potentially costs us 35,000 fewer American jobs and  about $3.1
billion...What's this potential loss in "human terms"?  Well, to pick some
U.S. communities at random,  35,000 is about the same size as the total
workforce of Charleston, South Carolina," says the editor of
Telecommunications Policy Review.  (Telecommunications Policy Review 18 Feb
96 p1)

                 PORN DISTRIBUTOR NETS FIVE YEARS IN PRISON
A distributor of online of child pornography was sentenced last week to five
years in prison for sending sexually explicit  photos of children via his
America Online account.  The New York judge imposed the lengthy sentence in
light of the  man's crime and previous pedophile convictions.  The conviction
was the result of a nationwide FBI investigation of  online porn.  (Tampa
Tribune 24 Feb 96 A6)

                           PLUG AND PLAY TOGETHER
A coalition of software companies, manufacturers and two universities are
joining together in a $23 million effort to  develop plug-and-play software
for factories, linking production planning, scheduling and plant-floor
execution.  The  ultimate goal is to help manufacturers migrate from one
software package to another when their automation needs change.
(Information Week 12 Feb 96 p22)

                     ARTIFICIAL-LIFE SIMULATION SOFTWARE
Software developed at New Mexico's Santa Fe Institute uses 3-D satellite maps
of a geographical region and software  "agents" that model such variables as
weather and crop yields to study why an ancient Native American culture
collapsed  suddenly in the 12th century.  The artificial-life simulation
software, called Swarm, produces a generic modeling tool for studying
ecological systems, economic theories and other complex systems. (Business
Week 26 Feb 96 p75)

                            FUN AND TAXES ON WWW
The IRS is getting good reviews for its new Web site,
.  An IRS executive says: "The
IRS is actually getting fan mail.  We're not used to that."  (New York Times
25 Feb 96 p24)

                           ORACULAR PRONOUNCEMENT
Oracle founder and chairman Larry Ellison, who says "we're moving toward a
world where all of your data will be  managed centrally," is now ready to
demonstrate the stripped-down "network computer" (or NC), designed solely for
connecting to the Internet and intended for sale at a price less than $500.
Oracle is also ready to begin shipping a new  version of its database
software capable of storing and handling large quantities of multimedia
information.  (New York Times 26 Feb 96 C2)

                   CHALLENGE TO COMMUNICATIONS DECENCY ACT
The legal challenge to the Communications Decency Act has grown stronger with
the merger of two civil lawsuits into a  single action in which the
plaintiffs include the American Library Association, the Center for Democracy
and  Technology, the American Civil Liberties Union, a number of other civil
rights groups, America Online, CompuServe,  Prodigy, Microsoft Network,
Netcom, and Microsoft.  The CDA makes it a felony to knowingly transmit
"indecent" or  patently offensive sexual material over communications
networks where children may see it.  Judith Krug of the ALA says:   "The
Internet is the communications medium for the 21st century, and the most
important thing that has happened  to communications since the printing
press.  Our main argument is that you cannot limit ideas and information to
the  lowest common denominator, which is what this law does.  It is
unconstitutional to force adults to limit the information  they can see to a
level suitable for children."  (New York Times 26 Feb 96 C2)

                 COURT UPHOLDS SOFTWARE COPYRIGHT PROTECTION
The Supreme Court yesterday upheld a lower-court ruling that said the act of
making a temporary electronic working  copy of a software program, which
happens automatically when a software program is accessed on a computer, can
violate the software company's copyright -- especially if the person using
the computer is someone other than its owner.   The original case arose when
Triad Systems Corp., which sells customized computer systems to auto parts
stores, had  sued Southeastern Express Co., an independent computer repair
firm, for violating the copyright on its diagnostic  software.  Triad
maintained that while the diagnostic software was included in the systems it
sold, it was intended to be  used only by either the owner of the computer or
Triad.  Critics say the ruling potentially turns every person who uses
someone else's computer into a criminal.  (Investor's Business Daily 27 Feb
96 A11)

                      CONGRESS TACKLES ENCRYPTION ISSUE
Encryption software companies are trying to rouse congressional interest in
an issue near and dear to their hearts -- the  Clinton administration's ban
on exporting encryption software more powerful than a 40-bit code.  Sen.
Patrick Leahy (D- Vt.) and Rep. Robert Goodlatte (R-Va.) plan to introduce
bills in the Senate and House to loosen those restrictions:   "This is a
matter that should be decided by legislation," says Leahy.  "We're talking
about billions of dollars in revenues   and thousands of jobs if we're
handicapped in our global market, especially if what we're told to do is to
build an export  encryption program that is so outdated that our 12-year-old
computer experts would laugh at it."  (Washington Post 25 Feb 96 H1)

                  MOTOROLA, SUN SHOOT FOR HIGH-SPEED ACCESS
Motorola and Sun Microsystems have formed an alliance to develop a turnkey
package of digital modems, computer  network servers and networking software,
along with installation and service, aimed at cable and telephone companies
eager to offer Internet access.  The Motorola-Sun products will compete
directly against offerings by AT&T's Lucent  Corp. and Hewlett-Packard, which
are both developing their own strategies for garnering market share.  "We'll
give  them a truly advanced multimedia platform, not just a bunch of
components," says a Motorola VP.  (Wall Street Journal 26 Feb 96 B4)

                        AT&T TO OFFER INTERNET ACCESS
AT&T Corporation will offer dial-up access to the Internet through its
Worldnet service.  Pricing will "be aggressive  enough to make the industry
sit up and take notice," says an AT&T spokesman.  An update on New York Times
Online  says AT&T will give free subscriptions to its existing customers if
they use the network for less than five hours a month,  or charge existing
customers $19.95 a month for unlimited Internet access. (New York Times 27
Feb 96 C1)

                  PICTURE PHONE MAKERS TARGET DESKTOP VIDEO
With prices of all computer-related peripherals continuing their downward
spiral, desktop video conferencing equipment  is no exception.  A group
manager for Connectix, a software company that sells a video-phone system for
$150, says:   "Within five years, every PC will have a built-in camera."
Elliott Gold, who's covered the teleconferencing business for  years, says,
"We still don't know if people really want picture phones," but predicts that
whether or not they want it,  desktop video communications "will sneak up on
them, like fax did."  (Wall Street Journal 27 Feb 96 B1)

                          NETWORKED SCHOOLS UP 35%
A Department of Education survey shows the number of schools linked to the
Internet is approaching 50%, with bigger,  wealthier, suburban schools
comprising the majority.  Schools with 1,000 or more students are most likely
to have access  (69%); the Northeast has the highest number of connected
schools (69%), followed by the Midwest, the West and the  south; and the
number of schools involved in accessing the Internet is up 35% from last
year.  (Miami Herald 19 Feb 96 p25)

                    DEFAMATION LIABILITY KNOWS NO BOUNDS
Steven Lieberman, an attorney specializing in First Amendment law, points out
that the global reach of the Internet  means added liability for U.S.
companies that put information up on the Web:  The defamation issue "has
enormous  economic implications for U.S. companies with assets overseas.  It
is theoretically possible for a company with a Web  site accessible in
Singapore to be sued in Singapore for defamation if someone puts up a message
critical of the Singapore  government.  The same thing could happen in China,
for that matter."  (Investor's Business Daily 27 Feb 96 A10)

                 CHEAPER CHIPS COULD SPELL TROUBLE FOR JAPAN
The recent dip in prices for memory chips is bad news for Japan's Big Five
(NEC, Toshiba, Hitachi, Fujitsu and  Mitsubishi Electric Corp.), which rely
on memory products for about a third of their semiconductor revenue.  Even
more  distressing, analysts estimate that sales of memory chips account for
one-third to three-fourths of the companies' entire  profits.  Some observers
think the downturn is just a temporary phase that should level off in a month
or two, but the  Japanese press already is predicting "The Crisis of 1997,"
when a glut of new chipmaking capacity is expected to drive  down prices
further.  In response, Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry
recently announced a $100 million  research program to develop "next next
generation" electronics technologies.  (Wall Street Journal 27 Feb 96 B4)

                       INVESTORS TRADE SHARES ON LINE
A New York-based brewery that raised $1.8 million from investors through an
Initial Public Offering made via the  Internet will now be allowing investors
to trade shares online.  < http://www.interport.net/witbeer/ > (Atlanta
Journal-Constitution 27 Feb 96 E5)

                        NEWSPAPERS CAUGHT BY THE WEB
A Kelsey Group/Editor & Publisher survey of 190 U.S. daily and 205 weekly
newspapers with circulations over 30,000  found that 44% of the dailies and
51% of the weeklies have a Web site;  of those that didn't, 81% of the
dailies and 46%  of the weeklies are planning to create one.  (Financial
Times 26 Feb 96 p13)

                         PAYCHECKS SWEETENED AT IBM
IBM employees this year will receive (according to their merits) new salary
increases that will average out at 8%, which  is twice the amount workers at
most other companies will be receiving.  In the past decade, the company has
restored its  profitability by cutting jobs by more than half.  (New York
Times 27 Feb 96 C3)

                            OFFSHORE PROGRAMMING
India, Brazil, Ireland and Russia are countries whose software engineers
increasingly are used as a resource by U.S.  companies.  India has about
130,000 software engineers;  Brazil, 64,000;  Ireland, 13,000;  Russia,
60,000.  A skilled  programmer in India with five years' experience is paid
about $10,000 (U.S.);  top programming salaries in the other  countries are:
Brazil, $32,500;  Ireland, $45,000;  and Russia, $12,000.  (Computerworld 26
Feb 96 p1)

            AT&T INTERNET OFFER LEVERAGES ON "FREE" LOCAL ACCESS
Because of a 1983 FCC exemption inserted into telephone accounting rules to
promote the development of the young field  of data networking, Bell regional
phone companies now find themselves unwilling and uncompensated partners in
AT&T's plans to provide up to 5 hours of free Internet usage to AT&T
customers.  Whereas AT&T has to compensate  Bell companies for "access
charges" when customers use local phone systems to connect to use AT&T long
distance  services, they are exempt from access charges when the customers
are using the lines for data transmission.  (New York Times 29 Feb 96 C1)

                  AOL OFFERS CONNECTIONS TO U.K. SECONDARY
America Online and its European joint venture partner, the Bertelsmann media
group, is offering to provide all British  secondary schools with a free
Internet connection.  (Financial Times 27 Feb 96 p8)

                      $500 BOX DOESN'T WORRY ANDY GROVE
When asked about the impact that the $500 Internet PC might have on Intel's
PC business, CEO Andy Grove says :   "Remember, the PC is not a thing.  It's
an organic phenomenon -- like a river, it flows.  It constantly adapts to
underlying technology changes, user demands, even market surprises.  For
instance, desktop conferencing was not  anticipated.  The profound and
pervasive use of messaging mail wasn't anticipated.  Commercial online
services were not  anticipated.  And now the Web.  The PC has perfectly
adapted to all of these.  Now compare that to the $500 box, which  is a
restricted viewing device that is going to have a restricted use...  I don't
think it will ever hit the tens-of-millions-of- units-a-year volume.  And if
I'm wrong, and they do, it will take several years for that to happen.  Just
think how great  the PC will be in several years."  (Forbes ASAP 26 Feb 96
p63)

                         AT&T ABANDONS NETWORK NOTES
Adjusting its strategy to reflect the growing importance of the Internet as a
vehicle for corporate communication, AT&T  is closing down its AT&T Network
Notes service, which was designed to run on a private communications network.
A  vice president of the company says:  "I am very proud of this decision
because it shows that AT&T is committed to the  Internet."  (New York Times
29 Feb 96 C4)

                 GENERAL MAGIC CONJURES UP PAYMENT SOFTWARE
General Magic has developed payment software that runs on its Magic Cap
operating system, allowing customers to use  handheld devices made by Sony
and Motorola to pay bills, transfer funds and conduct other electronic
commerce.  The  company will provide the new software to Visa International,
which will distribute it to member banks.  (Wall Street Journal 28 Feb 96 B4)

               HP OFFERS MULTIMEDIA PCs WITH BUILT-IN SCANNERS
Hewlett-Packard's latest line of Pavilion home PCs offer a new perk - a built-
in color scanner right below the CD-ROM  drive in the mini-tower.  The
PhotoDrive is designed to scan photos up to 5 x 7 inches in size, allowing
users to create  electronic photo albums, Web pages or newsletters.  The
RealLife Imaging line of computers will come with imaging and  publishing
software included, and should be on the shelves next month.  (Investor's
Business Daily 29 Feb 96 A6)

                 LIBRARIANS AT ODDS OVER CHARGING FOR ACCESS
While libraries all over the country strive for the American Library
Association's goal of "equity on the Information  Superhighway," opinions
differ on what that actually means.  Some libraries view the idea of charging
as "anathema,"  says a spokesman for the Public Library Association, but in
Baltimore County, for instance, a director says, "We're into  fees big-time"
as an additional revenue source.  South Carolina libraries don't charge for
computer costs, but do pass on  the connection fees, and while more than half
of New York libraries offer free access, the rest charge modest fees.  Some
libraries have even established their own debit cards to handle the payments.
(Wall Street Journal 29 Feb 96 A1)

                            NO SAFETY ON THE NET
A recent survey of businesses found nearly one in four are staying away from
the Internet because they worry about  electronic security breaches.  For
instance, Merrill Lynch refuses to use the Net for any "value-bearing"
business and has  doubts about allowing customers to link up via the
Internet.  Meanwhile, if your company uses an Intranet, you're not  immune to
security problems -- experts estimate that as much as 80% of all security
losses are committed by company  insiders.  The technical staff manager at
Bell Labs notes:  "Our firewall keeps the bad guys out.  But you can't say
there aren't bad guys inside the company."  (Information Week 19 Feb 96 p34)

                         THESE CHIPS KEEP THEIR COOL
A Purdue University professor has developed a technique to keep superfast
chips cool, embedding thermal microchannels  in printed circuit boards.  The
heat is then drawn away by a special liquid flowing in the channels.
Meanwhile,  Superconductor Technologies Inc. has come up with a technique to
chill chips to -55C or lower, using a small cryogenic  cooler.  The company
says its device can speed up PC performance by 50% or more.  (Business Week 4
Mar 96 p83)

               MICRON BACKPEDALS ON $2.5-BILLION CHIP FACTORY
Micron Technology has stopped work on a $2.5-billion chip factory it was
building in Lehi, Utah.  The company said  falling prices of memory chips and
an anticipated chip glut as other new fabrication plants come on line caused
it to  rethink its strategy.  Micron still plans to finish the plant within
three to five years, but says the start-up date will depend  on market
conditions.  (Investor's Business Daily 28 Feb 96 A5)

                        THOMSON BUYS WEST PUBLISHING
Canadian publisher Thomson continued its diversification strategy to become a
leader as an electronic information  provider with the purchase of West
Publishing for $3.4-billion.  West holds hundreds of millions of dollars
worth of  communications assets in the U.S., and is the biggest fish in the
niche sector with its massive online and CD-ROM  database of American federal
and state statute and case law.  (Toronto Globe & Mail 27 Feb 96 B1)

                           SELF-PATROLLING THE WEB
The World Wide Web Consortium is pushing the Web page rating system that it
developed in cooperation with the  platform for Internet Content Selection, a
group of 22 online firms.  Operators at about 20,000 Web sites have already
coded themselves using the Internet Relay System, which is similar to the
rating system for films.  To rate your Web site,  go to the SafeSurf site at
< http://www.safesurf.com/ > and fill out the form that helps them come up
with a rating.   PICS members plan to pitch the system to European
governments in an effort to avoid continental content restrictions.
(Investor's Business Daily 28 Feb 96 A6)

                      PHONE COMPANY BUYS CABLE BUSINESS
Regional Bell telephone company U S West is paying $10.8 billion to acquire
Continental Cablevision, the country's  third-largest cable TV operator,
which has access to about one in every three American homes with cable TV
service.   The deal is the first under the new telecommunications laws that
allows cable and phone service providers to compete in  both lines of
business.  (Atlanta Journal-Constitution 28 Feb 96 F1)



Kids Computing Corner
Frank Sereno, Editor

                         The Kids' Computing Corner
                                      
                                 Mathemagics
                               Windows CD-ROM
                                  ages 10+
                              street price $30
                               L3 Interactive
                            3000 W. Olympic Blvd.
                           Santa Monica, CA 90404
                                310-264-4188
                                      
                            Program Requirements
                              OS:           Windows 3.1
                              CPU:         486SX/33
                              HD Space:  8 MB
                              Memory:    10k
                              Graphics:    640 x 480, 256 colors
                              CD-ROM:  Double-speed
                              Audio:       16-bit sound card
                              Other:        mouse, printer optional


Have you been amazed by friends or coworkers who can easily add or multiply
large numbers?  Mathemagics  teaches you their secrets and more in an
entertaining video presentation.  If you apply the lessons taught in this
program, you will soon be the envy of your friends too.

The program is hosted by Dr. Arthur Benjamin, a college math professor.  He
has been using these techniques to amuse and amaze audiences at live
presentations and on television for many years.  Each technique is
demonstrated and explained in a series of twenty-seven video and text lessons
which are arranged in a three by three by three cube.  The award-winning
Learning CubeT interface allows the user to easily move from lesson to
lesson, from video to text and then back again.  The glossary expands and
defines terms used in the lessons.  All information in Mathemagics is only a
mouse click away.  Another plus for the program is that it supports Autoplay
in Win95.

The program teaches old math tricks such as "casting nines" and multiplying
by eleven's to finding the cube root of any perfect cube.  Benjamin  also
demonstrates addition, subtraction and multiplication of two- and three-digit
numbers, squaring two- and three-digit numbers, and techniques for memorizing
long strings of numbers.  Most concepts are explained for mathematical
soundness and can be used for everyday living.

While many of these concepts are useful and some tricks can be very
entertaining, the program could use improvement.  It should have had more
examples and more sample problems for the user to solve to practice these new
techniques and integrate them into his habits and thinking.  The video from
the professor's television show was too dark.  The program permits printing
of the TransporTextT lessons, but only one screen at a time rather than an
entire lesson.  You can print an entire lesson but you will be wasting a lot
of paper in the process.

Mathemagics offers some intriguing educational and entertainment
opportunities, but I feel it falls short of the mark.  You may decide
differently, but be warned that L3 Interactive only offers a warranty against
defective media.  Be sure to check with your local store on its return policy
or try it in the store before purchasing.

                            New Offer from Sierra
                                      
I recently reviewed two titles in the Adi's Comprehensive Learning System.  I
found these titles to be challenging and entertaining.  Each program is a two-
disc set which covers two grades' worth of curriculum for each subject.  Adi
modules are available in second/third or fourth/fifth grade in math, English
and Science.

These titles usually sell for $50 or more.  However, Sierra is offering these
titles direct to parents for $42.95 plus tax (where applicable), shipping and
handling.  As an added bonus, Sierra will include the latest version of Print
Artist with any Adi purchase.  Sierra is a name that means quality software.
Every Sierra software package is backed by a 30-day moneyback guarantee.  For
more information, call 1-800-757-7707 and refer to offer AD96J.

                                   #  #  #
                                      
>From Internet Wire News for immediate release:


         VELOCITY ANNOUNCES ACTION-PACKED ADVENTURE FOR GAMING GURUS


Strife Combines Blazing First-Person 3-D Combat With Captivating Role-Playing
                                 Excitement

SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- Velocity Inc., the pioneer of the industry's first
commercially successful multi-player networked game, today announced the
release of its latest title Strife. Scheduled to begin shipping May 1, Strife
is a challenging action adventure game that combines fast-action, first-
person 3-D combat and the mythic intrigue of the best role-playing games.
Strife thrusts players into a world of high stakes virtual combat while
challenging them to successfully navigate through 28 levels of a tyrannical
ruled city-state. Written using the enhanced id 3-D engine, Strife takes DOOM-
like gaming to a higher dimension.

"Strife constitutes a whole new type of 3-D combat game," said Russell
Rheingrover, vice president of sales. "We expanded on the tradition of DOOM
in a number of ways. Both by intensifying the fighting action with new
weapons such as the Flame Thrower and by providing an enthralling interactive
plot line complete with dramatic voice-overs, we've made Strife an example of
what the next generation of PC games will look and play like."

Set in a world inspired by both alien and ancient medieval influences, Strife
challenges players to an epic adventure in which they encounter a host of
life threatening enemies, obstacles and mysteries. Players must defeat the
Order, a quasi religious dictatorship that keeps the world of Strife mired in
eternal warfare. The challenges take place throughout a virtual world of 200
square miles and 28 different levels of play, all of which represent varying
states of technological development. Players interact with members of the
underground rebellion, the Movement, who hold the keys to success. The allies
are imperative to attaining information, conducting secret missions and
furthering the cause against the tyranny of the Order.

                             New Weapons Systems

As players fight their way through the fanatical ranks of the Order, they
encounter some of the most hideous and powerful adversaries imaginable
including the Entity which feeds on violence, bloodshed and destruction.
Fortunately, players will find a virtual arsenal of innovative and powerful
weapons to combat the massive firepower of the Order.  Weapons include the
blistering Flame-Thrower, highly explosive Grenade Launcher, silent but
deadly Crossbow, that shoots poisonous and electric arrows, the rapid fire
Micro-Missile Launcher and the ultimate weapon of mass destruction: The
"Sigil."

Strife contains a number of unique features not found in other action
adventure games, including:

˙    Non-linear Plot Lines. Players experience different adventures and
       endings as they exercise the wide variety of choices that are available
       throughout the game.
˙    Complete Dialogue Interface. Players can interact with every character
in Strife in order to unravel the story's insidious plot, complete with well
directed voice overs by talented actors.
˙    Amazing Graphics. From medieval architecture to alien high technology,
players of Strife will find graphics with a degree of depth and complexity
unrivaled by other combat games.
˙    8-Player Gaming. Strife offers improved multi-player real time gaming
with up to eight opponents over a network and a 2-player option that works
with a modem or null serial cable.
˙    Fully Interactive Environment. Players can trade gold for goods from
characters like the Weaponsmith, explore vast cities and experience deadly
confrontations with a dark cult of machines.
˙    As players complete special missions, skills such as weapon accuracy and
       stamina will improve.
˙    Extended Game Time. Players are challenged with more than 100 hours of
       non-repetitive game play ensuring long-term, intriguing play.
     
In addition, Strife has integrated a vastly improved 3-D engine that
dramatically enhances the gaming experience.  "The super-fast id engine has
been enhanced to provide features like alpha blending, creating see-through
stained glass and smooth fades between levels," said Gregory Slayton, acting
president and CEO of Velocity.  "This, along with intelligent interaction
with a variety of game agents, provides players with a virtual world they
will want to explore over and over again."

Strife runs on a 486 or higher processor and requires 4MB of RAM, a 256-color
VGA monitor, a CD-ROM drive and supports most major sound cards (16-bit
Soundblaster compatible or higher recommended).  Strife requires 22MB of free
hard drive space and MS-DOS 5.0 or higher. Strife will be available May 1 at
an estimated street price of $49.95. Demo versions of Strife can be
downloaded from Velocity's world wide web site at
"http://www.velocitygames.com"

Strife is the product of a partnership between some of the PC gaming
industry's hottest companies. Strife was produced by Rogue Entertainment and
utilizes the id 3-D engine as the basis for its graphical interface.
Chairman and founder of Velocity, Inc. Moses Ma remarked, "We're absolutely
thrilled to work with id Software.  They're terrific to work with and we look
forward to additional collaborations in the future."  Velocity is a leading
developer and publisher of fast action multi-player network games. The game
play in Strife reflects the various strengths of each firm's contribution.

For additional information contact: Russell Rheingrover, Velocity
Incorporated, Four Embarcadero, Suite 3100,
San Francisco, CA 94111. Telephone (800) VLOCITY or (800) 856-2489, Fax:
(415) 776-8099,
Internet: strife@velocitygames.com



Portable Computers Section
Marty Mankins, Editor

Micrografx NewsWire STR Focus


       Micrografx Announces Agreement to Acquire Visual Software, Inc.
  Critically Acclaimed 3D Technology Innovator to Complement Award-Winning
                      Graphics Products from Micrografx

Richardson, Texas (February 27, 1996) - Micrografx(R), Inc. (NASDAQ:  MGXI),
a leading graphics software developer, today announced it has signed an
agreement to acquire Visual Software, Inc., a leader of 3D graphics,
animation and publishing tools, for approximately 880,000 shares of
Micrografx common stock subject to certain adjustments.  The merger, which is
subject to regulatory approval and other customary conditions, will be
treated as a pooling of interests for accounting purposes and is expected to
be accretive to Micrografx fiscal 1997 results.  Revenues from Visual
Software products were approximately $5 million for the twelve months ended
December 31, 1995.

"With the power of today's computers, 3D is clearly the next progression for
the PC graphics market," said J. Paul Grayson, chairman and CEO of
Micrografx.  "The acquisition of Visual Software allows us to both leverage
Micrografx's previous experience in 3D, and infuse new concepts and talent
into our development efforts.  The result will be a rich set of graphics
capabilities available for Windows(R) 95 and Windows NT."

"As a worldwide developer of 3D graphics and animation products since 1991,
Visual Software has been focusing on developing tools to enable designers and
artists to work easily and affordably in 3D,"  said Doug Richard, CEO of
Visual Software.  "The combination of both companies is a natural step toward
shaping the future of the multimedia and 3D graphics arenas."

Visual Software's product line addresses the creative needs of home users,
Web page creators and sophisticated 3D designers, and will become a key
component of Micrografx's strategy to provide computer users with a full
range of products to empower visual communication.  In addition, Micrografx
will leverage its core competencies in worldwide distribution, product
localization, and award-winning interface design to bring even more
compelling solutions to an increased number of PC users worldwide.

 "Micrografx's acquisition of Visual Software, a leading maker of 3D tools
and content, is a great leap ahead for this earliest pioneer of Windows-based
desktop graphics," said Bill Caffery, Gartner Group's vice president of
advanced technology strategy.  "Second only to the Internet itself, 3D
graphics will continue to be a realm of white-hot innovation.  The rapid
commercial evolution of 3D applications will effectively leverage such
innovation to drive the future growth of the Internet to new heights."

"With approximately 85% of Visual Software's revenue coming from U.S.
markets, we are poised to leverage their existing product line into our
worldwide distribution, sales and support organizations," said Greg Peters,
CFO of Micrografx.  "Micrografx has successfully grown its business through
acquisitions in the past, and these products are a natural fit with our
existing customer base."

While specific plans are not yet public, Micrografx intends to continue
marketing existing Visual Software products, while effectively integrating
the company's advanced and comprehensive 3D technology into its award-winning
graphics products, including Micrografx ABC Graphics Suite(TM) and Windows
Draw(R).  A strategic benefit of merging the two companies and product lines
is the ability to deliver robust, easy-to-use tools and extensive 3D content
required to create compelling virtual worlds.

Visual Software publishes a full range of 3D tools and extensive 3D data for
Windows, Windows 95 and Windows NT.  Their products include Instant 3D(TM),
Visual Reality 2.0, Simply 3D, and Simply 3D SuperPack.  Visual Software's
products will continue to be available as standalone titles in retail outlets
during the transition period, and through Micrografx channel partners in the
future.  Visual Software customers can be assured of continued quality
service and support.

Micrografx is the global leader in developing and marketing graphics software
which   enhances  visual  communication  and  empowers  creative  expression.
Founded  in  1982,  Micrografx  has become a leading  software  publisher  by
responding  quickly  to customer and worldwide market needs.   The  company's
U.S.  operations  are  based in Richardson, Texas with a  development  office
located  in San Francisco.  International subsidiaries are located in Canada,
the  United  Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Australia  and
Japan.

Microsoft  and  Windows  are either registered trademarks  or  trademarks  of
Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.


ThumbsPlus Update! STR Infofile                           STR's Editor's
CHOICE!



                        ThumbsPlus 3.0a Release Notes


NOTE: Several changes to the database format (both to fix problems and add
functionality) mean that this latest release is not compatible with databases
created with the first two 3.0 beta releases. You will need to delete any
databases (.TDB files) created with these betas.  This release is compatible
with databases created using Beta 3.

Bugs fixed in 3.0a:
˙  Volume change problems (removable media), where ThumbsPlus would store
   the incorrect volume label in the database.
˙  After thumbnailing or viewing, fonts were left installed on Windows 95.
˙  Catalogs did not print correctly on Windows 95.
˙  The file list display was slow in directories with many files.
˙  If thumbnail display was not enabled, the file list was empty.
˙  Volume aliases are implemented.
˙  Superfulous "unable to retrieve volume data" messages no longer occur.
˙  Replacing thumbnails (thumbnail from selection or from video frame) did
   not work
˙  Clicking "OK" (or pressing ENTER) in the Comments windows would mark the
   image modified even if the comments had not changed.

Here are some additional new features not listed in the Help file:
˙  You can view images while loading them (Options>Preferences^Viewing).
   This works well with most video cards on most platforms, but it may make
   the overall time to load slower under some conditions.
˙  Shortcut menus have been added to change characteristics of the displayed
   file list (Options>Show for files, Options>Sort by and Options>Thumbnail
   size).
˙  You can select whether the default directory for saving files is the last
   directory saved or the current directory (Options>Preferences>General).
˙  In the shareware version, you can enter registration information and
   print (or fax) a form to register (File>Register).
˙  You can store assumed image gamma values for individual images in the
   database so they are always displayed with that gamma setting
   (View>Assumed Gamma).
˙  When copying or moving files, the "Replace" confirmation dialog box has
   been enhanced to show the thumbnail (if available) and information about
   both files, along with several option buttons: "Yes to all," "No to all,"
   "Yes to Newer," "Yes," "No," and "Cancel."
˙  Most image editing functions can now be canceled using the ESC key.
˙  The ESC key is now the "off" key for the view window: if an operation is
   in progress, it is aborted; if an area is selected, it is canceled; if
   the image is full-screen, it is reduced to a normal window; otherwise,
   the window is closed.
˙  Most cursors are now in color on Windows 95 and NT.
˙  ThumbsPlus no longer accepts a username and code to eliminate the nag
   screens while waiting for the released version to arrive. This was being
   abused, and several codes were floating around on the Usenet newsgroups.
˙  The program to repair and compact (purge) databases is only available
   with the registered vesrion. It will also convert version 2 databases to
   the new format, with a few restrictions.

Known problems and limitations:
˙  Picture>Annotate is not functional. You can change the database
   annotation (comment) for a graphic using the Picture>Properties^Database
   tab.
˙  The background file option for contact sheets is not yet functional.
˙  You may occasionally have problems positioning buttons correctly when
   configuring the toolbar.
˙  TIFF images which are stored bottom-up do not display properly when "View
   While Loading" is on from Options>Preferences^General. You can resize or
   minimize and restore the window to see the image properly.
˙  "View while loading" is only implemented for TIFF, JPEG, PNG, PSD
   (Photoshop) and PCD (PhotoCD) files.

                         Contacting Cerious Software

                           Cerious Software, Inc.
                       1515 Mockingbird Lane Suite 209
                             Charlotte, NC 28209
                             Voice: 704-529-0200
                              Fax: 704-529-0497

E-mail addresses:
   Sales & Support (CompuServe):   76352,142
   Sales & Support (Internet):     cerious@vnet.net
   Sales & Support (AOL):     CeriousSW
   Author                     pcrews@cerious.com

Please visit our World Wide Web pages at: http://www.cerious.com



Atari Interactive - software/Jaguar/Computer Section
Dana Jacobson, Editor



>From the Atari Editor's Desk      "Saying it like it is!

     It's been an extremely quiet week for Atari computing news.  On the
personal front, I have managed to finally obtain the Falcon donation (thanks
go out to the Boston Computer Society's Atari group!) and a couple of Supra
14.4 modems.  Since I'm currently running a MichTron bulletin board system
with two lines, I decided to "pull the plug" on one of the lines and put the
RATSoft BBS software on the second line to test it out "live".  So far, it
seems to be going well.. only one 'crash' while chatting with a friend of
mine.  Turns out that one of the configuration data files got zeroed out and
the system went down.  Easy to fix and all is well again.

     Now I'm just waiting for the gigabyte hard drive and a CDROM or two to
be approved so I can make the complete transfer of all existing files and
such.  The "new" system is essentially a message-based system for my old
users to get accustomed to the new software, add a few downloads just to test
downloading, etc., and a few other odds and ends to test out some of the
feature.  It's definitely different from the old software!  Having fun, which
is really what matters.  If you feel like dropping by and adding to the
message activity, feel free to give us a call.  We're in Boston, in case you
have an aversion to long distance madness - the number for the present system
is 617-567-8642 and the new "test" system number is 617-569-2489.  The
initial call is a "register-only"; and validation occurs in less than 24
hours.  Drop by and say hi!

Other than that, there's little else on the agenda this week.

Until next time...

                               Jaguar Section

More JTS/Atari News
Ultra Vortek "Cheats"


All's Quiet...


>From the Editor's Controller  -  Playin' it like it is!

     After last week's deluge of Defender 2000 messages courtesy of Atari's
Don Thomas' and his CatNips edition, it's been extremely quiet online.  The
UseNet still continues to be a forum for speculation with regard to the JTS
merger, along with the usual game questions and the like.

     I usually talk to some of the folks at Atari once or twice a week just
to see what's new, but this week there didn't seem to be anyone around when I
called!  I made sure that my deodorant was still working and then the
lightbulb appeared.  My surprise turned to the realization that this week was
likely a madhouse inside Atari headquarters as they're probably in the midst
of a move to the new offices, as it's the end of the month (Happy belated
Sadie Hawkin's Day!).  As a result, there's no new "tidbits of info" for me
to pass along to you this week.  Oh well...

     There's little to report this week (no new games are out) and there
still hasn't been any kind of announcement of pending releases.  We so have
some information dealing with the Atari/JTS merger, perhaps old news for some
of you, but here nonetheless.  We also have some Ultra Vortek cheat notes for
those of you who have been screaming for them, courtesy of the folks at
Beyond Games.

     It appears that a few of our reviewer staff members have become a little
despondent over the merger news and been a little lax in their reviews as of
late.  We're working on them and hope that their reviews will be forthcoming!
We're also trying to cut through the new red tape at Atari to get our hands
on the latest batch of games for review ¬ it's amazing what a bunch of
layoffs can do to the normal routine of a company!  And, with the current
move of staff and equipment, I just know that it'll still be awhile before
the "normal" routine is re-established.  So, like everyone else, we've
adopted a waiting mode and hope that things get back on track, or at least
some semblance of one.

     So, we'll keep it short this week and start to get ready for a new week
and issue.  I hope that we'll have some new information regarding the merger,
new games, and whatever else we come across in our travels!

Until next time...


Industry News STR Game Console NewsFile  -  The Latest Gaming News!

                      Microsoft Unveils 3-D Technology

Microsoft  Corp. has unveiled Direct3D, a new programming specification  that
aims  to  give interactive 3-D technology to mainstream PC users on both  the
desktop  and  the Internet.  Microsoft says more than 80 software developers,
hardware  vendors and PC manufacturers have already pledged their  intent  to
deliver  products  for  the  technology. Direct3D  support  software  is  now
shipping to developers in beta form as part of a software development kit.

"Direct3D   combines  state-of-the  art  technology,  high  performance   and
unprecedented industry support," says Brad Silverberg, senior vice  president
of Microsoft's Internet platform and tools division. "PC users worldwide will
soon  experience a whole new level of 3-D realism in Internet, entertainment,
education and business applications."
Direct3D  is  a  major  enhancement of the Reality Lab  3-D  technology  that
Microsoft  acquired  last year through its purchase  of  RenderMorphics  Ltd.
Reality Lab has been used as the rendering engine for many groundbreaking 3-D
games  and  Internet  virtual world applications, notes Microsoft,  including
Microsoft Internet Explorer 2.0.

Microsoft says Direct3D and compatible tools will give developers access to 3-
D  hardware  acceleration, integral support for the mapping  of  photographic
textures  and  videos, the efficient mixing of animated 3-D and  2-D  objects
within a single scene and sophisticated object animation and scene management
services.

"We  believe  Microsoft's Direct 3-D initiative will bring unprecedented  3-D
graphics  to  home PCs and we are very supportive of this effort,"  says  Rod
Schrock,  vice  president of the consumer division at Compaq  Computer  Corp.
"For  the first time ever, consumers will be able to experience special  game
effects  on  their home PCs that surpass the performance of the  latest  game
players  and even today's arcade machines. By delivering a comprehensive  3-D
standard   for   the  industry,  Direct3D  should  greatly   accelerate   the
availability of exciting 3-D products in the marketplace."


Jaguar Cheats, & Hints STR InfoFile  -  Solving Those Riddles!

>From CompuServe's Atari Gaming Forum, thanks to Larry Tipton, a couple of
Ultra Vortek tips:
The first confirmed POOPALITY in the game Ultra Vortek has been released by
Beyond Games. It is for the character Lucius.  Here it is:
 POOPALITY!
          * Down, Down, Away, Forward, Away, "A", Jab, Hold "B"
 Ummmm, enjoy!
Beyond Games has released a new code for the Game Ultra Vortek.
Here it is:
Press and hold simultaneously 1, 2, 3, 7, 9, Option and you access Test Mode.
 Enjoy!
 --Larry T.


>From the Usenet and AEO's Mark Santora:
Here you go guys!
At the EYE Press Simultaneously 1,2,3,7,9 Option.
A NEW option screen will appear over the eye.

New Options Include
-1 hit kills player 1 -1 hit kills player 2
-# on back to daze (hits to daze someone)
-H Flip(flips every screen 180 degrees
-Annihilation Extra Time
-Tablet On
0 - fight all matches
1 - fight 6 matches
2 - fight 5 matches
     etc.
LUCIUS POOPALITY D,D,A,F,A,P,J,Hold K Enjoy!
Mark @ AEO


Jaguar Online STR InfoFile    -    Online Users Growl & Purr!

The following was printed in TWICE, This Week in Consumer Electronics. It's
not new news but probably will clear up some of what's going on.

              "Atari, JTS merge for production of disk drives"

"Atari is making its expected investment in the computer disk drive industry
in an unexpected way - through a merger that will create new company in which
no current Atari executives will hold a senior management position.
Subject to shareholder approval, Atari will merge with privately held JTS, a
drive maker founded just two years ago by disk drive pioneer Jugi Tandon. Tom
Mitchell, a co-founder of Seagate Technology, and one time president of
Connor Peripherals is president of JTS.

Atari and JTS have agreed to merge into a new company that will retain the
JTS name and be publicly traded. Although current Atari Shareholders will
receive about 60% of the shares, all officers will come from JETS. The family
of Atari chairman Jack Tramiel will have about a 28% stake in JTS.

Atari will continue as a separate, entertainment products division, but for
just how long has become a subject of debate. Both Atari and JETS management
say there is no current plan for Atari to abandon the video game and software
business.

Atari laid off most of its game marketing and development staff last month,
but there has been no sign yet of a widely predicted liquidation of Jaguar
Game, peripheral and software inventory. There is speculation that Atari will
seek to license out rights to Jaguar."



ONLINE WEEKLY STReport OnLine          The wires are a hummin'!




                            PEOPLE... ARE TALKING



On CompuServe

compiled by
Joe Mirando
73637,2262



Hidi ho friends and neighbors.  It's been kind of a quite week here in
AtariLand.  Most of the talk is still about Atari  buying into JTS and what
will become of us poor Atari computer and game console users.  I can't say
for sure what will happen to our Jaguars, but I can make an educated guess
about the computer portion...

Those of us with Atari computers will continue to use them to their fullest
extent until they no longer do everything we  want them to do.  Then we will
move on to other platforms.  Of course, we will all reach that point at
different times so  the effect will be of a slow, gradual decline in usership
from where we are now to oblivion.

Let's face it... when you look at the advances in the computer industry in
the last... let's say five years, it's easy to see  that any computer will
quickly become obsolete.  It's a miracle that computers last more than a
year.  To tell the truth, I  think that the newer and bluer machines will be
retired at a much higher rate than our old faithful STs.  It's probably not
because of the machines themselves, but because of the users.  We ST users
have learned to do much more than simply  run programs.

We've had to learn how the machines work, how to get the most of what we have
instead of running out  and buying a new machine or a new suite of programs.
That has made us what we are.  Keep that in mind when your  friends talk
about their shiny new Pentiums with all that memory, hard drive space, and
CPU speed.  Then you can sit  back and wait for the "easy" questions to
start.  You know, questions like "I paid good money for these blank disks,
why  should I have to format them?"  Sometimes I wish that PC came with a
special dial so you could turn up the intelligence.   The monitor has one
labeled "brightness", but it doesn't seem to work.    Thanks Gallager!

Well, let's get on with the reason for this column... all the great news,
hints, tips, and info available every week right here on CompuServe.


>From the Atari Computing Forums


Kris Gasteiger talks about a particular software mogul:

"I'm beginning to wonder when the anti-trust suits are going to break up
Microsoft like they did AT&T. When one  person has the control of such a huge
portion of an industry, I get these huge doubts about their benevolence. I
prefer to have a choice or two in all things."

Mark Kelling tells Kris:

"I do have to agree with you that most of us will be forced to use WINTEL
machines if the current trend in disappearing computer platforms continues.
When I bought my first ST there were Amiga, Mac, Atari, Intel(DOS & Windows),
IBM(OS/2), and NeXT all selling  what they felt was the perfect home computer
or office computer or whatever type of computer.  And you could find  _all_
these machines in local computer stores.

Today, you have Windows or Mac.  True, some of the others still exist in  one
form or another, but you can't just pop down to a local dealer and pick one
up.  One of the major reasons for this is  price.  Those now missing
companies could not, or would not, keep up with the downward spiral of
hardware prices.  An example follows:

Several years ago, when I got my Mega 4 ST with color monitor (no hard drive
or other extras included) I paid $2500.00  for the system.  I purchased a
hard drive for it later (a Mega file from Atari) and paid $500 bringing my
total cost to  $3000.  Today, a Falcon (new) with 4 Meg RAM and no hard drive
or other extras goes for about $1000.

In comparison, I purchased a Mac in November last year.  It included 16Meg
RAM, math coprocessor, 1.3Gig hard drive,  4X CD ROM, 28.8 fax modem, 15"
color monitor, a load of software (including Works, Dictionaries,
Encyclopedias,  Fax software, etc), one year in home warranty service, an A/V
card (TV tuner, direct to disk audio recording capabilities)  and other
things I'm sure I still haven't found yet! ;-)  How much you may ask?  $2500,
the same

I paid for a bare bones  ST in 1990.  Looking through the Toad catalog and
trying to put together as comparable Falcon as possible (14Meg  RAM; 811M
hard drive; 4xCD-ROM; inexpensive monitor) I come up with a grand total of
$3260 ... and still no  software included.  Why would someone spend that much
extra to get less hardware?  At one time Atari could boast  "Power Without
the Price!" and that is why I bought the ST instead of something else way
back then.  I could have bought a Windows machine with nearly the same specs
as my Mac (8Meg of RAM instead of 16Meg) for nearly $1000  less.  But just
the mention of a WIN.INI file and my skin begins to crawl! ;-)

This shows the change in the market over the years.  Most people getting
computers today are _not_ doing it because they  like to tinker and "hack" at
the thing, they are getting one because it's the "cool" thing to do.  After
all, _everyone_ has a  WWW Home page today, don't they?? When you are buying
something that has become a household appliance sold in  stores one aisle
over from the clothes washers, are you going to put out the equivalent cost
of a small used car?  No way,  you want something that costs about as much as
your TV or sound system.

There will always be a market for other operating systems.  Look around now
at the specialty markets such as video,  CAD, or digital music recording.
There are Sun Systems, Silicon Graphics and the new B Box out there.  They
fill a  special niche in the market place.  And the best thing is these
systems are what will lead to the eventual replacement of the  WINTEL
monopoly.  People once thought IBM was the only type of computer to use in a
big business setting -- look  around nearly any big computer center today and
Big Blue has one Small Corner of the floor.  Faster, more flexible and  less
monolithic machines have pushed the giant into new directions (mainly out the
door!).  So shall Intel and Microsoft follow."

On the subject of the Tramiels' astounding reverse-alchemy trick (turning
gold into lead), Gregg Anderson posts:

"So far everything the Tramiels have touched has died a horrible death after
betraying their most loyal supporters time  after time.  I wonder if JTS
realizes yet what they've put at risk by bringing them into their director's
boardroom?

Anyway, I'm keeping my TT for as long as it will continue to run. Despite the
lousy management they still put out some of the best computers on the
market."

Paul O'Brien asks:

"...How can I transfer files from my Atari ST to a Mac?"

Keith Morton tells Paul:

"You have several options for transfer.  Null modem transfer (slow).
Disconnect hard drive from ST reconnect to Mac  and access via Magic Mac.
Copy files onto disks and recopy them to Mac.  Use ST Zip to compress and Mac
Zip to decompress.  There are probably other ways too."

Albert Dayes of Atari Explorer Online Magazine adds:

"This forum is as good place to start. What type of files are transferring?
The easiest method is to format a 720K disk on  the MAC using Apple File
Exchange and copy all your ST files to it. Then you can read them on the MAC.
Exporting  your data to ASCII first is the easiest way to move it over."

Mark Kelling jumps in and tells Paul:

"If you have one of the newer Macs which let you simply insert PC disks into
the floppy drive and access them directly  things are super simple!

You need to use 720K disks formatted on a PC or the Mac in 720K PC layout.
(You can buy preformatted 720K PC  disks too.) Copy the files you want to
move onto the disk with your ST then place it into the Mac and move the files
to  where ever you want them.  If you have a disk previously formatted on
your ST you want copied into the Mac read the
next paragraph carefully ;-)

IMPORTANT NOTE: _Always_ write protect the Atari disk _Before_ placing into
the Mac drive.  The Mac will write at  least two files onto every PC disk it
reads:  FINDER.DAT and RESOURCE.FRK which will be used to hold information
about any Mac file which may be copied to that disk.  If the disk you insert
in the Mac has been formatted to anything but  standard 720K the Mac can
trash it!  I had an irreplaceable disk of data from my ST which I wanted to
use in MagicMac.   When I inserted it into the Mac, I didn't get the "This
disk is Unreadable; Initialize it?" dialog you should get if the disk  is
unreadable; I just got a blank window.  Taking the disk back to a PC, I
discovered that it had been formatted originally  on the ST with extra
tracks.  The Mac wrote its two files where it thought was empty sectors,
totally destroying the  structure of the files on the disk.

Chances are, if you attempt to read an ST disk formatted in any way other
than pure 720K (such as Twisted, extra  sectors, extra tracks, any Magazine
format which is readable by single sided disk drives in the ST, etc.) all
that will  happen is you will get the "Unreadable" dialog box. But don't
count on it because the Mac is trying its best to read that
disk as a favor to you! ;-)

If you have an older Mac, things get more complicated.  But overall, just
treat the ST disk as if it were a 720K PC disk  and use whatever method you
have in your Mac to read those type PC disks."

Corey Klemow asks about the "grass-roots" effort to bring CompuServe's HMI
protocol to the ST:

"Has there been any progress recently on an Atari HMI terminal program?  Last
I heard, a development team had been assembled."

Since I'm involved with the project, I tell Corey:

"I can only assume that Steven is awaiting a response from CIS about whether
they are going to release the specs, code,  or whatever to him...  They said
that they'd make it available, they didn't say that they'd make it easy. :^(

Yes, the development team has been assembled and we are anxious to get to
work.  I'm sure that Steven and the rest of  us will begin posting when he
hears from CIS."

Sysop Ron Luks tells us:

"After a CIS executive announced that CIS would make some HMI info available
to outside developers (albiet without  any guaranteed support) they were
literally OVERWHELMED with requests.  I personally passed along requests from
5  different develop groups supporting a variety of platforms including the
Atari.  Multiply that by the dozens of other  people like me and you can
understand that CIS was simply bowled over.  There is some necessary
paperwork involved  and its (unfortunately) not trivial (you know how lawyers
can be) but they are working to satisfy all the requests.  Its just  going to
take a bit longer than anyone imagined or that CIS expected it to take."

I reply to Ron:

"I have no doubt but that CIS personnel are working at top speed to go
through all of the requests.  I can imagine that the  interest and the
associated requests for information is staggering to say the least.

My point was that just because CIS said that they would make it possible
doesn't mean that they will simply be handing  out copies of the HMI source
code on every street corner.  They have an interest in making sure that those
involved are  capable of releasing something that doesn't give CIS a black
eye... or at least clog up their customer support lines. (Even  though the
responsibility for support will not fall on the shoulders of CIS, you _know_
that there will be those calling CIS  and asking things like "do I need a
modem to use COLUMBUS?")

And I'm sure that the announcement of the CIS public stock offering is just
adding to the commotion.... I'll have to look into getting some shares.

Mark Kelling adds:

"We can hope that the overwhelming response may have woke up CIS to the fact
that we _need_ the service they provide  and don't want to lose access.
Also, maybe they may have completely underestimated the numbers of people who
still  refer using a text based access system for whatever reason (simple
reluctance to change or simple impossibility of  obtaining a system to run
the supplied software on).

Although the chance on CIS not going ahead with plans to eliminate text based
access are probably zero, maybe they will  take it a bit slower till the
third party developers get a chance to put the HMI software out there.  Or at
least they may be  more willing to help us get things done!"

Ron tells Mark:

"This may sound like double-talk or twisted semantics, but I promise its not.
CIS is not doing anything to their existing  software to eliminate ASCII
access.  i.e.-- its not a feature they plan to remove from the current system
just to [tick] off current users.

Here's the story:

The CompuServe Information Service (as we know it) is 2 complete sets of
system software (an ASCII interface and a  graphical (HMI) interface) running
on old 36-bit DEC mainframes.  Highly modified, but dinosaur hardware
nonetheless.  CIS *has* to upgrade the system hardware.  They have opted to
use the plentiful and cheap 32-bit dual Pentium hardware  in a client-server
environment.

Therefore, the entire system's software needs to be rewritten for the new
hardware.  Its a complicated, expensive, time  consuming process. The ASCII
interface software was the original systemware and has been around since 1978
or 79.  The graphical systemware was introduced in the mid 1980's and CIS has
continued to update and improve both software  systems over the years.

To switch to the new hardware (which is desperately needed because the old
stuff has low capacity and cannot be  replaced/fixed any longer), CIS needs
to have the systemware completely re-written from the ground up.

Writing systemware for a multi-user, multi-server system that support
thousands and thousands of simultaneous  worldwide users in a proprietary
environment is a huge task.  90% of the current users access the service
under the  graphical HMI interface while less than 10% use the old ASCII
interface.  The HMI userbase keeps growing and the  ASCII interface userbase
keeps shrinking.

Faced with these stats, CompuServe management decided to put 100% of their
resources into developing the graphical  HMI interface for the 32-bit
environment first.  Will they ever get around to developing the second ASCII
interface for  the 32-bit systems?  I dunno, but THATS what people should be
petitioning for if they want to have this (ASCII) again.

So, to make a long story short-- CIS is not taking away ASCII.  They are just
developing for HMI on the new hardware.   Addressing 90% of the userbase
first makes complete sense.  The ultimate question will be: "after the HMI
interface is  ready, will CIS try to develop ASCII for the remaining minority
(at considerable expense) or does it make more sense
to try to convert the minority to HMI?"

Mark tells Ron:

"Sometimes my choice of words is not the best.  "Eliminate ASCII access" I
guess is not exactly what I meant.  "No  longer provide service upgrades for
ASCII users" I guess is closer.  There are many examples of this --the new
mail  system for HMI users only, new forum software for HMI users only --
which make us feel like we are being eliminated.   True, CIS will not change
or go away for us, it will just seem to get a little smaller when we can't
access those other areas.

I can fully appreciate the complexity of the task CIS has set itself to.  I
work for a large bank which manages the entire  Automated Teller network for
the Texas Louisiana area.  We must provide constantly improved and expanded
services to  both the end user (the person getting cash out) and the provider
(the bank who issued the card).  Also, we must _never_  experience any system
outages for any reason.  This means even when we installed new mainframes
last year, the  network never missed a transaction while the swap was made.
We have approximately 30 thousand simultaneous users.  CIS probably has more,
but the overall picture is the same.

I don't see CIS reinstituting the dual system software.  This would not only
be outrageously expensive, but would really  defeat the purpose of updating
the whole thing.  One of the benefits of the new system to CIS is the fact
that everything  will be neatly packaged HMI "events" and won't be strings of
ASCII text.  Now, if someone is logged in with an ASCII terminal system,
every time a key is pressed the system has to take time to examine that
character and decide if it  requires action (such as a control Q to stop text
output).  This takes massive amounts of overhead. Under HMI, the user  can
type for hours composing a message (like this one! ;-) but the system can go
do other things until the user selects "Send"  then the entire message zips
into CIS for processing.  A much more efficient system.  Also, the actual
body of  text of the message is compressed by CIM before sending and can be
stored that way.  When "read" it is transmitted and  the receiver
decompresses it and displays it.  All in precise HMI "event" packages.  So,
instead of a full dual system, all  that is needed is a program to take our
ASCII stuff and repackage it as HMI data for the new CIS to work with.  A
routing system such as that used for PPP logins to move ASCII users' input
over to an HMI translator sounds like a good  idea if the development of
third party HMI software does not produce acceptable products.  Guess I'll
contemplate that  idea a while and go chat with Feedback.

Sorry to go on so long.  Hopefully all this will lead somewhere for someone."

Well folks, that's about it for this week.  Tune in again next week, same
time, same station, and be ready to listen to what they are saying when...

                             PEOPLE ARE TALKING



                             EDITORIAL  QUICKIES



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                                   . Judith Krug,  Feb. 1996


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